Wow. I had a great post written about constipation, but it lacked context because I never posted the story about a decision I made back in late January. So today's post will be a rough explanation of January's event. Mind you, I did deliver a talk about my Beloved in February, that made me very "seen." It was a great experience and did share deeply, not at all what is described below; but what is described below is a self-indulgent exageration for the sake of keeping me in shame.
You'll have to wait until tomorrow for the constipation piece. Edge of our seats...
January 31st I explained thus:
My fear of being seen, of speaking my mind, of telling my story is deep and wide and it’s all about how people will SEE me. Not at all about how I see me. I want the accolades, but I can’t take the judgements, the pokes, the quizzical silences and non-reactions. Those make me crazy. Those make me crazy. THOSE MAKE ME CRAZY.
So, I only hint at what is inside. I only tell bits and pieces of my story. Then, through time, my confidence builds and more and more of me slips out as I grow in trusting others around me and trusting myself until a point comes when someone or some group of people slap a negative judgement or look silently at one another after I’ve spoken or, or what, or I stop making sense to myself. There, that’s the edge. Eventually I come to a place where I recognize my limited talent for expression. I recognize the edge of my ability to tell my story. So, I stand at the edge, that wall, that precipice where across the way I know is completion and fulfillment and I watch others leap their way across or I see others watching quizzically because they just realized I’m not “all that.” They see from the other side that I am, for all my talk and expression, still not across that chasm.
So, I sit down. I melt down actually. Into a puddle of muck. And I feel utter disgust and disdain and loathing for myself. And I know this will never ever change, this pattern and I will never ever cross the barrier. I can’t possibly know how to. I lay there in my mess while I feel the ridicule and pokes and disdain of others and their disappointment and eventual turning away. And I eventually turn away too and leave myself, that puddle of muck, there at the edge of myself; and I retreat back inside. Back to the beginning of the cycle. Back to playing at life, pretending half my story is enough. Back to cutting off pieces of myself to stay sane. To stay safe, to stay understood or at least accepted. Back to getting away with joyful living because I am invisible and don’t have to feel the edge.
The edges of me are where other people are. I recoil at the edges. Pull them up short. Tuck them under. Pretend they aren’t’ there. Because I am afraid they will get stomped on but more-so, because my edges are crusty and irregular and definitely not pretty. They smell bad too.
I’ve been living in the soft middle part of me. What if I lived at the edge? What if I don’t retreat with apologies or explanations? What if I don’t deny this too is me? What if I live a bit at this edge? Crusty and mucky. Just Be Here.
Deep breath. Stay with myself. Ok, my skin feels as if it’s all come off. It’s all dry and crusty, like the edge of me; and my guts are all mush. Black and formless. At the edge of me.
Can I sit with this disaster? Can I love? Can I Love the fallen apart me? Can I just stay here a while? Not retreat? In regret? In shame? In deference, to bystanders’ feelings? Can I just be fallen? Fallen apart. Just stay with myself?
No scrambling for redemption. No apologies. No spackle, to patch back together the image of me that people like, or that I like, or that we all just allow to be me. The moment. The many moments of unrest. Of yuck. Of pain. With no movement. No promise of movement. No future. Only Now. Can I allow that? Can I finally just be a mess? And love at the edges?