- Posted by drodriguez
- On November 26, 2018
“It’s dark because you are trying too hard. Lightly child, lightly. Learn to do everything lightly. Yes, feel lightly even though you’re feeling deeply. Just lightly let things happen and lightly cope with them. So throw away your baggage and go forward. There are quicksands all about you, sucking at your feet, trying to suck you down into fear and self-pity and despair. That’s why you must walk so lightly. Lightly my darling…” -Aldous Huxley
It’s easy to hide behind someone else’s purpose. I sit thinking, What am I doing? I sit quietly, Where am I going? I sit hoping, Why am I here? But the point is: I sit.
I do not move. I do not blink. I try to keep my mind within the paradigms of comfort. Even still, I wonder. I want to walk away from the Not Knowing. I cannot make sense of why nothing makes sense. The confusion is enough to keep me passive, isolated, and mute. I know I am not the only one who’s been here – resisting the Not Knowing.
Instead of being with the lack of control, I take on projects. At least then I have something I can manage. A good friend of mine called and asked me to help her create a non-profit. Of course! A co-worker asked me to edit the content of her website. I got you! A woman I met once at a networking event last year emailed me to rewrite her bio. With pleasure! All the while I add bullet points of priority above my own innate quest for answers. I reason, I’ll finish her bio, her website, her business plan, then I’ll get to me. I tell myself this every day: eventually I’ll get to me.
The thing is, I never seem to get around to me. I have not been my priority, in fact my relationship with Self has often felt more like an obligation – I don’t understand myself, or why I am here. This unclarity has frustrated me to the point of inaction.
So I sit.
And I wonder how many folks can relate to the experience of being out of control. The anxiety that comes from not having it all together. The overwhelm that comes from comparing myself to everyone else and thinking, “I’m failing at this.”
In my second year of college I was sitting (you see the pattern here, right?) with a book by Lord Tennyson. In it, I found a poem that read:
Forgive these wild and wandering cries,
Confusions of a wasted youth;
Forgive them where they fail in truth,
And in thy wisdom make me wise.
It hit me then. The distractions. I was so petrified, mortified, terrified of engaging myself that I filled my life with obligations to keep me busy and disconnected from Self: projects, parties, socializing, work, lovers, pets, eating, not eating – anything to keep me as far away from my wondering heart as possible. Why? Simple: what if I looked within and found that who I am was not enough? What if I engaged myself and was disappointed with my spirit? Or, what if I turned out to be too much? Then what? I can’t walk away from that. But I can walk away from Not Knowing.
So I sit. Cause it feels safe and comfortable.
The thing is, I don’t want a life that’s safe and comfortable. I desire adventure and joy and connection. I spent years without engaging myself. Years running and avoiding. Even now, I catch myself putting myself last at times. The difference is: I am getting the Life doesn’t happen within my control. Control itself is an illusion. The only thing I do have power over is the stories I make up about my experiences. I choose to believe that I am enough, regardless of what I’ve heard in the past. I get to embrace the surrender and trust that life has my back. Suddenly, the Not Knowing loses its intimidation. If I have my back, what I do and where I go becomes hugely irrelevant. What is my purpose? I am. What is my message? I am. What are my plans? I am. And the confusion? Well, I’ve learned that if I trust my heart to guide me, the confusion becomes exciting, not paralyzing. So I dance with it. I join in, allowing it space and understanding. You see, I no longer shame how I feel. If I’m frustrated, I scoop myself up and love myself. If I’m sad, I scoop myself up and love myself. If I’m angry, I scoop myself up and love myself. I honor my process, both the Knowing and the Not Knowing. Both of them are honorable and both are extraordinary teachers. I accept them both. I encourage you to invite them into your table and have a chat.
And when you feel like running – ‘cause you will – tell yourself: I am safe. I am significant. And I’ve got you. Say it as many times as it takes for your heart to feel nurtured and accepted and free.