My heart is racing and my mind is paralyzed in a self-hating cycle of fear and shame. I’ve done it again. I can’t escape from myself. When am I ever going to learn? When will I finally grow up and just be good?
I drove around with these thoughts walloping my infantile inner strength and eating away at my soul. I had felt this way before – many times, in fact. Sometimes the cycle would start from the smallest of perceived hurts and other times it was the direct result of my own questionable decision making. For a multitude of reasons, throughout my life and on many occasions I’ve driven, walked and talked in circles with these thoughts fueling my downwardly spiraling progress. But this time is was different…this time I remembered that I am a divinely-sparked “ghost driving a meat coated skeleton made out of stardust.”* And when I remembered this quote, I also remembered that I am a soul. And when I remembered I am a soul, I remembered to give my tired old ass a break, stop driving in circles and grab some breakfast. And on my way to my favorite breakfast spot to grab my favorite oh-so-not-myfitnesspal-friendly-carbfest breakfast, I stopped and picked up a wide-lined single subject notebook and some new gel pens. “Self”, I said. “You’re going to grab some breakfast, figure out why this will all be ok and you’re going to write that shit down so that you will remember it and won’t go home and lose your shit again.” So I did. I ate. I thought, I figured and I wrote. And, without any editing, this is what brought me home. And, so far, I haven’t lost my shit again.
Is it just me or does everyone else battle a voice inside themselves that says “You’re bad” and “You’re not good enough?” I hear it constantly. I feel so…impure, damaged and unworthy every second of the day. Since I feel like a bad person, I don’t trust myself. And since I don’t trust myself, I can’t truly trust anyone else. If someone loves me, I consider them foolish. If someone withdraws from me, I assume they’ve uncovered the truth about me. If someone doesn’t like me, I agree wholeheartedly with them. “You’re right, ” I say to them silently. “I’m glad you figured that out.”
I want to be a good person. And all my life I’ve thought that meant I had to be someone else. I’m still trying not to blink so that I won’t unsee the truth I’m just starting to glimpse. I don’t have to change or be someone else to be good. I’m already good…I am a good person. Yes, I struggle with my demons, but everyone does. This makes me human. Who I am to others and to the world around me, despite my demons, is what makes up my humanity. Yet I have habitually persisted in trying to change myself; every time my human-esque shortcomings show up, I see this as some damnation as being, and continuing to be, a bad person; of having a corrupted humanity.
Isn’t it time for me to just stop this cycle of self-hatred? Isn’t it time for me to just accept myself and try to the be very best me I can be? How can I start making decisions in my life and let them be just that…decisions? Mine to make alone without explanation or apologies to anyone else. What a phenomenal concept! I am a grown up and I get to make my own decisions! And I get to be ok with each and every decision I make as long as I’m always watching my humanity. And if I’m not okay with a decision I make, I get to make the decision not to make that decision again! I need to throw away my broken internal thermometer that asks the question “Am I good enough?” and start trusting myself to come from a good place. I need to trust my good source. From there, I can examine or question individual situations, unique decisions and interpersonal interactions and determine them, independently from myself as a whole, as worthy or unworthy of my humanity. Wow! Can I even imagine what life will be like from this paradigm? Can I hold onto this beautiful view? What can I do to help me remember?….Sunsets. My sunsets will help me remember.
When I watch my sunsets, there is a brief period of time before when I can see the sunset coming, but the light is still too harsh and the faults of the horizon too obvious and distracting. And there is that time later when the moon sets up shop and the sun just barely peeps its reminder of the day over the lip of the horizon; making everything look gloomy or ominous. Then there is that time in between when the majestic spectrum of colors shines just as the sun kisses the horizon…that breathtaking moment when you can remind yourself to believe everything is exactly as it should be. When you can look at the sky and say, without a single doubt or criticism, “This is good. And it is beautiful.”
So today I’ll return home a woman victorious – not over myself, but over my fears and shame of being my self. I’m tired of fighting my own colors and my own sunset. I am not perfect and I am still figuring things out, but I am good. And I am beautiful.