I have been carrying around a belief for a long time that all I need to do to recover from something is to be aware of it (understand it, more or less). And it’s true! Awareness is, in and of itself, curative–if I let it be.
Still, it used to get frustrating to have this belief because this is how it played out in life:
1. become aware of something
2. declare myself instantly cured
3. be affected by it again at a later date
4. feel cheated/experience related devastation
oh… yeah… not so effective.
then I heard this: “ideas don’t change people, practice changes people.”
and that felt true too. Hmmm.
Thing is, the two things are almost opposites if examined from a certain perspective, so the first thing we’re going to do is avoid that perspective, because really… why complicate things and make them harder than they have to be?!
I woke up on Monday and I was all sorts of grumpalicious. What does that look like? I just felt kind of blah. I wasn’t interested in doing any of the things that I know will make my day better (eating breakfast, preparing lunch, wearing something fun and playful, eyeliner… really deep stuff here), and my head and heart felt full, but not in a solid, centered sort of way… more of a floaty, wiggly, active sort of way. Full of stuff that needed to get out.
And about halfway through the day when I was just starting to feel blah long enough to feel the urge to label it (and myself) as “bad,” I came up with another way of defining my experience.
I wasn’t having a “bad” day.
I was having a “processing” day.
|who could be mad at a journey this beautiful?|
It had been a big weekend… I had lots of new experiences, sensations, feelings… and they were all still present in my body. Just floating around, waiting for a discharge (oh shoot, just figured that part out right now this minute–that would have been helpful on Monday).
And the reframing began:
1. not a “bad” day, a “processing” day
2. not, “oh great, here we are again! why the F do I always come back to this?” instead I got “oh, hello. you feel familiar, but you’re new aren’t you? i wonder what you’re about…”
…and with those simple choices I went from a place that could have easily disintegrated into self-loathing and tension to a place of gratitude for the journey.
No, I didn’t particularly want to be having a “processing” day. I felt like I had just been coming off of a series of them and I could have used a little rest… but really, am I going to complain that my processing days have too short of breaks between them because I am on the fast track to perfection? (*wink*)
I think not.
Here’s a question I am borrowing from Dr. Ron Hulnick of University of Santa Monica: If you used a ladder to climb a mountain and it was a challenging climb with many obstacles… once you got to the top, would you be mad at the ladder?
I’m still in “it” and “it” is turning out to be a lot of anger directed outward at all sorts of situations… and I’m still sitting in that anger and trying to figure out what to do with it, but the anger isn’t directed at the process or the journey… and that’s different. and different is good.