Somewhere between fifth grade and sophomore year, I’d developed the part of my brain that convinces me I suck and everyone will think I’m a failure.
Knowing my guilt is relational—that is, that it happens in the context of people and relationships and the judgment I perceive them having of me—has been a blessing and a curse (as are most adulthood, therapy-induced revelations).
This really is a trust exercise: my present self trusting that my past self has my best intentions at heart. And that my future self will thank my present self for keeping a promise. But if the person I’m supposed to trust is telling me that I’m a failure for not living up to expectations, for not getting my lazy ass off the couch, then of course it will be impossible to build that trust.
Living in the limbo of having identified an obstacle but not yet having the tools to address it.
These days, it’s the starting that’s the hard part. Once I’m going along on a task or project or activity, whether it’s for work or pleasure or both, I am fine (and usually wonder why it took me so long to get going). I wonder why that is. Why the getting going is hard, even for something I truly want to do and know I’ll enjoy doing?
Some of us still curl in our cocoons, waiting for our time to be right. We can now see both the butterflies, free and saving us all, but we can also see the raging worms. We know we want to be a butterfly, but it is tempting to escape early. To stay as we were. Because at least the worms are out there, in the world, not enclosed with only their thoughts and dreams and despairs and anger and fear.
Because we’re all so vulnerable, it means we have to put more trust in each other to take care of the collective. Because of this added trust, we become even more vulnerable to the actions of others.
If I can find the words here, and put them out into the world, I know that I have the words to say. If I can say them here, I can say them out loud, to the people in my life.
This month's theme: Vulnerability and Trust