Being Me, In My Own Eyes, For My Own Sake

Today I have tightness
A tightness in my head
A tightness in my heart
A tightness in my soul
An anxiety. An annoyance
A shimmer of violent energy
It has to be released onto a page

I am drained by all this ”Proving”
All this proving “Who I am”
Proving “I am worthy”
Proving “I can match up”
Proving “I am clever enough”
“I am sociable enough”
“I am trying hard enough”
Proving “I am worthy of your/their praise”
Proving “My thoughts are valid”
“I am moving fast enough”
“Sharp enough”
“Outspoken enough”
“Tell it like it is enough”
“Chatty enough”
“Quiet enough”
“Sharing enough”
“Caring enough”
“Well read enough”
“Cultured enough”
“Bubbly enough”
“Have enough friends”
Proving “I have fought enough”
“I have felt enough”
“Have lived enough to know the things I know in my heart”
“Have been hurt enough to feel the way I feel today”

Proving I am enough of every damn thing that every damn person expects of me every damn day

What about “Being me” enough?
Just that
Just being me

No, it is not you
I am never going to “Be you” enough
I shouldn’t have to apologise for that
I won’t apologise for that
I shouldn’t have to try, and fail, so you can feel better …
That you “Did you” better than my ill advised attempt
But I have a really good shot at being “Me”

I care deeply, but I won’t measure my emotions on a scale for you
I share what I can, when I can, how I can
It is not always enough. It is not always eloquent
But it is what I’ve got to give in the moment, and I will give it as honestly as I can
Sometimes it is just hard to share,
Like handing someone your innards on a plate
I won’t do it with a filter applied so you find it more palatable
And I won’t tie my value as a person to a “Like” button – so you can ratify my soul

I have valid ideas. I have strong opinions
Sometimes I can express them well (sometimes)
Sometimes I choose not to and that is my choice
I have a lot of thoughts (a lot, a lot!)
Sometimes they are overwhelming
Sometimes they are overwhelmed by the weight of others
Their strong characters, their voluminous opinions, their …
“Do you understand?” “Do you get it?” “Because I said it and you didn’t?”
“If you aren’t being as vociferous as me, can you really think it?”
“Do you really think at all?”

I love being sociable, sometimes, for a short time
Sometimes I like to be quiet.
Please let me
Even in a room full of people.
Please let me

I don’t like to be outspoken so much
When it happens I spend days analysing and berating
Is that what you want for me?
Then can I just “Be me” in my way, not your way?

I don’t like to state all my lived accomplishments every time I meet a person
Or go online
Or sign up for something
When did meeting someone,
I mean TRULY meeting someone, involve a CV?
Can’t we just be? Together?

I know what I know
I’ve lived what I’ve lived
I’ve achieved so much!
And other things have brought me to my knees
And you know what?
I am proud of how I’ve come through it all

So, I make a commitment today and for always
I am going to be me
To the very best of my ability
And try and curb the contamination of others judging my success whilst I do it


Copyright © 2018 · Forty and Everything After

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As You Be What You Will Be. As You Go Where You Will Go.

I sat, and as I breathed, I looked around inside my head. And in there, there were dark masses. Masses I had created, formed, sculpted, thought into life. Some of them were jagged, some of them too hot to touch, some of them now smoothed through the tossing in my mind’s waves but heavy nevertheless. I looked at these dark masses and I said …

“It is time”

I said to the accumulation of anger, formed from the frustrating exchanges. That cooling lava of irritation, of injustice and unexpressed indignation. With steam still rising from its surface … 

“It is time”

I said to that boulder of sadness, about that sad thing, the thing that will always be sad but is taking up space I now need back …

“It is time”

I said to the shame, those stinging leaves of derision, those thorns of remorse, that I cultivated and watered with bitter tears …

“It is time”Read More »

Hoodlums & Heroes

And so I suddenly stopped, in the middle of the street, and in that instant I saw it all. The illusion that we all occupy. That busy street, full of people and puddles and pictures we believe into reality. Who are all these humans? Who are these actors, these holograms? Who are the hoodlums, and who the heroes? Who amongst them will have drama, who trauma, who triumph?

And I wish for a moment I could step off set, consult the script, see it all from behind the lens. Pause the action and place myself at some other moment, perhaps in some other street, where would that illusion lead me?Read More »

Conversation With A Tortoise – Part II

T & Me – On Faith And Freedom

Me: It is my last morning. And I have been having the most miserable time. Here I am, sitting on this seat for the final time, crying my heart out. Then I hear some rustling and I think to myself …

“That can’t be another tortoise can it?
On my last morning –
As I saw one on the first.
That would be quite something.”

So, I wander over to the fence where I had seen you before and, after a quick scour on my side of the fence, I spot you. On the other side of the fence! Sitting in the sunshine, looking calm and content. Read More »

Conversation With A Tortoise – Part I

First Encounter With An Unlikely Spirit Animal

Me: So, I came to this seat on that first morning, to spend a little quiet time, to watch the butterflies and the paragliders floating by. It was beautiful, serene, the closest to Heaven I had ever felt. And then you came along. My first wild tortoise. I could hear scuffling in the undergrowth. For some time I heard it, but didn’t know it was you. Eventually I had to go and explore and there you were. My heart filled up with joy to see you.

I thought …

“This is perfect.
Look at who I have found.
How lucky am I”

Read More »

The World Is My Oyster

Recently I started a course in Counselling and Psychotherapy. As part of this course I have to undertake my own training therapy. My first session was last week. I am already hooked. I find this stuff absolutely fascinating. The things I have been learning just make so much sense to me. I want nothing more than to dive into a bath of all of these books I have been buying, until their nutrients seeps through my skin and I have become a knowledge-filled, prune-skinned, wise woman.

It reminded me of a favourite blog piece of mine, written whilst I was undergoing my own counselling a year or two ago … when my head and my heart hurt and I couldn’t say why.

That whole process was life-changing for me, and it has now inspired me to finally follow my passion for all things human, and sign up for the course I am now engaged in.

And so, as a new year approaches, and the world seems to be my oyster once again, I wanted to share this personal fairytale one more time.


The Path To Wise Counsel – A Tale

Once upon a time there was a small version of me. This girl had chutzpah, she had self-confidence and just the right amount of sass. This small version of me had utter certainty that the world was her oyster, and she fully intended to be the creator of pearls.Read More »

Today I Am Grateful For …

I have spent the last few days at my best friends house. Circumstances had sadly prevented me from visiting for a while, so I am especially delighted to be here now. I’ve been having lots of fun with her two sons who are full of cuddles and “I Love You!!”s. I can soak that kind of stuff up all day long. Who wouldn’t enjoy such squishy salutation every half an hour or so?

In a quiet moment (which to be fair come few and far between in a house that contains young boisterous boys) I thought I would share a little practice I took up a few years ago, which helps me to capture such smile inducing moments as these, as well as giving me a space to consider the gifts that the harder days in life may have to offer.Read More »