Friday, November 12, 2010

Unfamiliar Territory

I thought of something intriguing today . . .

So far I've spent all of my adulthood trying to slay a few different dragons, different but related:
1. Stomping out a bad self-esteem and nurturing a good one up from the musty basement.
2. Telling fears to go screw themselves and find new boundaries for my comfort zoning map
3. Figuring out how to make the seven year old and the seventy year old in me fuse into one cohesive person.
4. Be happy.

Basically numbers 2-4 stem from issue number 1 -- the mischievous, little . . . no, exasperatingly huge thorn in my side.  Each of these dragons has, at one time or another (and occasionally all at once), kicked my ass.  Obviously they have been somewhat dominant, hence the "all of my adulthood" part.  And unfortunately, my name being drawn out of the Goblet of Fire was not the reason behind it all.  Unfortunately, the blame is on me.  
Little by little I have been chipping away at my Berlin Wall of issues, slowly seeing some daylight and breathing in some fresh, unfiltered air from the other side.  Each glimpse, each breath has been both encouraging and depressing.  Each has given me hope that the lousiness is only temporary and that "this too shall pass."  But if it were only that simple.  Nothing is.  (Or maybe it is.  Perhaps my underlying issue is turning everything into a paradox.)  While some hope seeps into my pores, there is always that bit of sadness that fleets out -- sadness that the journey is not yet through and that so much time has been wasted in allowing the issues to manhandle me.

I realized something today . . .
I realized that right now, more than any other time in my life, I feel the most "together" that I have ever felt.  Right now I feel like nearly all the pieces of my life are coming together and functioning properly, like they were always meant to do.  

Then I had another realization . . . 
I realized that that is kind of scary.  Scary, you ask?  Why?  Well, I'm not quite sure why just yet.  But there was definitely an intrinsic and cautionary, "Hold on just a minute" that emerged just after the revelation of "togetherness." 

Maybe the caution comes from the fact that for nearly 20 years I have harangued my worth into a docile ball of fright hiding in the corner.  I have become so accustomed to, become so familiar with, grown so attached to my deficiencies and inferiorities that to part with them, no matter how negative, is terrifying.  They're what I know.  They're part of who I am, though an ugly and cancerous part they may be.  A world without them, though better in the long run, is at first, a bit alarmingly foreign.  

It's sad how we can so easily get used to the pain we hold in our lives.  If we deal with it long enough we may not even notice that it's still there.  And getting rid of it is not as easy as it maybe should be.  Once the door has opened and we begin to usher it out into the cold a new pain comes knocking and asking to stay in the guest bedroom.  But this pain is temporary . . . I suppose you could call it growing pains (it's not just a show about the Seavers!).  Eventually, once the newness has worn off, the pain eases, and a new normal has been formed.

My new normal is in transition.  I'm working on fashioning it into not only what I've always wanted to have, but what I was always meant to have.  I often have to remind myself that I, that none of us, were meant to live in pain, or in fear, or in apathy.  Those are just things we get used to because, well, sometimes we have to.  Sometimes we do it to survive.  We all do the best that we can -- trying to find that slice of happiness amidst a lot of bad, bad things.  Sometimes though, I wonder if, instead of just a slice, we are all meant to have the whole, damn pie!