I’ve always found it a little funny that every time a chapter closes in my life I read through what’s been written over again with new eyes, wide, wondering if I can glean something about the future from the past. Occasionally I think I do, but I usually walk away from this somewhat futile exercise of reliving the past imbued with thanks and gratefulness for certain little details concerning loved ones but never concerning my own sense of self, self worth or self accomplishment.
No matter how often or from which loved one praise comes from I’ve never been able to recognize it for what it is. I’ve noticed that, as soon as eyes glaze over with the loving stare I’ve come to know so well in my young adulthood, my brain automatically shuts off despite my yearning inner being. Walls go up and my mind goes into lock-down at the hint of any positive remark. Why is this? I’m quite confused and have tried so hard to fight this process of “taking compliments” gracefully, but still, I fail. Every time, I fail and I’m withering away inside due to the nourishment I deprive from me. It really is strange. I wonder what I am so afraid of?
As this new chapter in my life begins, I realize that the more I focus on just, being the harder it seems to be for my outdated coping mechanisms to activate and keep bound within myself, my self, my being, my own truth of existence. I had to travel to the opposite side of the world to come to this realization and, as I read back through the past I walk away with again, a strengthened sense of thanks for everyone who has helped me get to this turning point.
The time off I’ve taken to re-evaluate things has been worth so much already. I’ve not been able to define my self by the money I’m making or by the efforts I’m putting into my business, I haven’t been able to define my self by my business, business contacts, quality (or lack there of) of email writing, logo making, project development or design, I am essentially cut off from my tribe by the time zone difference so I haven’t been able to define myself through my family, friends or conversations henceforth- all I’m left with is, well, me, my physical body, the associations in my mind and how I choose to spend my time.
Like a scared rodent, I’ve been scrambling internally to try and get out of this drastically uncomfortable position by ferreting back and forth into old minsets, saying old phrases that used to be excuses for behaviors and feelings only to find that they’re all emptier than they were the last time I used them as a crutch. Pressing the “play” button on old video tapes is always a great way to gain insight but I find that I, along with many others have unfortunately lost many, many days to replaying old mental movies of what happened in the past wondering why the present seemed so empty.
But that’s the glory and tragedy of the past I suppose. What’s there is there and it ain’t commin’ back. I can choose to let it haunt me or I can choose to let shine. But the basic fact of the matter is that all things, positive and negative remain as an album of things I like to visit when I’m lonely. And that’s all it should ever be.
But like many, I often get lost wandering in the library of “Mollie Coons” only to realize, weeks later that I’m still looking for a memory or photo that doesn’t exist yet because I haven’t given present the time of day long enough to actually create it. Every Graphic Designer knows this, a google search is only a great way to spike your own creativity. You can search google for the perfect photograph for whatever you’re working on for days and days only to find that you’re going to have to get out from behind your computer screen, grab your camera and a sandwich, get outside and take the damn thing yourself.
So, as I’m stripped of my excuses, I find myself feeling like Siddatha before his profund awakening…daft, confused and empty, despite an extensive collection wisdom and teachings from wonderful, venerable people.
I leave with this…
” ‘But what is this, what you have sought to learn from teaching and from teachers, and what they, who have taught you much, were still unable to teach you?’ And he found, it was the self, ‘the purpose and essence of which I sought to learn. It was the self I wanted to free myself from, which I sought to overcome. But I was not able to overcome it, could only deceive it, could only flee from it, only hide from it. Truly, no thinking in this world has kept my thoughts thus bust, and this my very own self, this mystery of me being alive, of me being one and being separated and isolated from all others, of me being Siddartha! And there is not thing in this world I know less about than about me, about Siddartha!”