I was talking with a friend this evening and remarked how sad it is that we make life more difficult for ourselves. This friend and I share a lot of qualities, which can make for some pretty deep conversations as we share thoughts and explore them together. I am incredibly grateful for this friend, woven from a similar cloth.
Chronic analyzation and heavy handed surveillance of ourselves are two qualities that we share…for better and for worse. While we are both grateful for the insight and depth of experience that comes with such reflection….boy is it tiring. And difficult. And far to often, a kill-joy.
Self-analyzation is a very helpful tool and I am grateful to possess the ability to wield it with skill and ease. It has helped me become who I am. Someone what is kind and strong, thoughtful and persevering. But like a hammer in a tool box – – – to bring it out for every task will lead to many a broken object and dented wall. A hammer is just not always needed.
Far to often, I’ve got a bouncer sitting at the doorway to my life. She is analyzing emotions and experiences as they approach, checking to see if they are on list of “okay” party guests. The thing is, joy doesn’t often get in. Joy is often so fleeting, so tender, that to be analyzed and scrutinized is too much for it to bear. It won’t hold- it will become mist and be blown away before I’ve even registered it’s knock at the door.
This summer I went on vacation with this same dear, deep-thinking friend. We shared a wildly joyful boat ride one afternoon, complete with dolphins and birds and sunshine. The waves rocked us about and we held on for dear life as we sped across the water, hair flying and hearts soaring. It was simply and utterly wonderful. And to enjoy it – to feel it – to let. it. in.- this is all that was asked of us. Thankfully, we were able to do so. And it was so good.
To trust myself. This is everything. This is not to say that I need only myself. Where would I be without friends and Spirit and my dog and trees….no where good, that’s for sure.
The alternative to self-trust is a bouncer that tries to keep out every emotion and experience I may not handle “right” or that may bring discomfort or pain (not that these can actually be kept out). Goodness this makes for a boring life. A sad life. And self-confidence resembling Swiss cheese.
I am able to live a good, satisfying life without analyzing every move and emotion. I can be kind and responsible without a constant checking of whether I am being sufficiently kind and responsible. I am learning to trust this. To trust myself to grow and change as needed while respecting that I’m pretty lovely as-is.
I can ride the wave of each experience that comes in the door. Even if it knocks me down and holds me under till I’m gasping for breath. I want this – living – far more than the illusion of safety my inner-bouncer has sought to provide. I appreciate her efforts, which at times have been very needed. But she’s gotta loosen up. Joy and difficulty, grief and satisfaction are congregating at the door.
Life is knocking.
Come. On. In.