We never discussed emotions in my family. I didn’t gain one perspective or another of emotions, whether good or bad. It seems to me that our household must’ve been absent of emotion if I think of how often we discussed the reality of them. But my memory serves me well. Emotions were everywhere! They ruled the place as tyrants- completely out of control!
I’ve always been a ponderous individual who observes and feels sentiment, energies, interactions, dreams; nostalgic, a deep feeler and thinker. Over the years, through much and various experiences, joy and pain, happiness and grief, compliance and trespass, love and hate, faith and doubt, surprise and let down, I’ve come to realize that true love is the key to true success individually and communally. But true love requires vulnerability. Vulnerability requires courage.
Love is ultimately the feeling of connection and appreciation. From this place we find our richest relationships. But with out the courage to be vulnerable we can not fully know ourselves nor Love. Yes, vulnerability is about self-discovery and making oneself known to those who we care about the most and trust care about us as well. To “know thyself”, as Socrates said, we must be vulnerable first with our self. If we avoid vulnerability we can not fully know and therefore, can’t fully love our self.
In such a place of ignorance we will find ourselves in habitual patterns of reaction, avoidance and unaware instead of response, engagement and consciousness. Coping habits and negative emotions are unleashed as our discomfort grows or goes unaddressed. Yes, those who are around us will have to experience these actions and reactions of ours. We end up hurting ourselves and others, wondering why we didn’t make better decisions; why our most valuable relationships are lacking or failing. We suffer the experience of, “I’m bad.” or “I’m not good enough.” or “They’re bad/They’re not good enough.” We deal with guilt and regret in unhealthy ways. We master how to flee from what’s truly happening inside us and masking it or distracting ourselves with busy-ness- work, family, pets, hobbies, entertainment, food, sex, alcohol… But the pain doesn’t just go away. It calcifies and makes warm hearts cold. It pushes away the very thing we are longing for: true connection and empathy- to be truly known and truly know. The habitual expectation of simple smiling faces and cheap, surface-level conversation where no one really knows anyone except by the number of these sophomoric conversations we’ve had together, are just more ways to avoid our personal reality.
The courageous aren’t afraid to be curious about what they feel, the negative stories they imagine and how they can show up better for them selves and the people around them. They’re committed to the process because they know there’s a better version of themselves awaiting with greater love, creativity, freedom and peace. That better version will lead to a life of greater satisfaction.
The courageous aren’t afraid to be curious about what others are feeling either because such is the nature of true love, true relationship, true vulnerability- actually caring about someone else.
It’s not an easy road. It’s certainly the road less traveled. But, it’s the road of truly living; truly knowing the wonderful breadth, height and depth of who you are, where you come from and where you’re headed.
I’m committed to the process because it is the way I can show up best and continue growing into that better version of myself for myself and for my loved ones. I see The Process as the truest way to be a better human and it places me in a larger space, a sacred space- that is much larger than just my simple self and my matrix of false beliefs, excuses and insecurities.
“Other’s have excuses. I have my reasons why.” – Nickel Creek “Reasons Why”
I’m tired of my excuses. I make them in defense of my irresponsibility. I’m not satisfied with my pretense of omniscience. It’s my own way of assuring myself that I’m good or even great. Oh, to have the courage to feel the wave of fear rise and face it head on and ask, “Why? Why, are you here, wave? I’m tired of being swept away by you. I’m going to swim your depths and tread your surface until I’m no longer afraid.”
I can not allow the hurricanes of this life to silence my love… The value Love brings to my life, is ultimately all I really desire. Love is really all I have to live for.