Monday, October 24, 2005

I like this house. I like houses as metaphors and so I will continue to post images of them here. I'll let you extrapolate your own from this one. Strangely, I see this image as a positive one. Like Autumn, which feels like a time of reflection and things returning to the earth, so is this house, so is my consciousness going a little deeper this time of year.

I never realized how all my life I have had a running commentary at the very bottom of my consciousness, just low enough that I didn't really know it was there. The line? It's dangerous to be yourself. I don't know what that means, exactly, only that it's clear to me that in so many ways I resisted/withheld/clamped down my real self in order to let others be big. I'm not playing victim here. It was a survival skill, I did it because I thought I had to do it, because the interior walls of my self-esteem were built out of leaves and twigs, not brick.

But now that I'm an adult, I don't do it as much anymore, and as a result I find there is more conflict in my life. And that's probably what I was avoiding all along while defending myself, because I didn't like that abrasive feeling of conflict, because I've always been just a tiny bit tender (overly-sensitive was the old label). I'm better at conflict now. I still don't like it. I still get easily wounded, but I'm learning to take things less personally.

The only problem with conflict is that I like being connected with people. I like to break through to the muck so that the relationship can deepen. And I'm more adult now so that I can even admit my own bullshit. I like vulnerability and openness, and when I receive it, you can bet your bippy I'll give it back. I don't like it when something I say causes someone to go away. In fact, that's the most painful feeling of all. Even if I HAD to say what I did for my own sanity; even if there was nothing left to say but the truth, which was ugly and raw and unpleasant. Still, I find that I've lived a lot on the seesaw of saying what I feel or not saying what I feel, because the outcome is so unpredictible. Certain people hear what you have to say and respond in a way that's amazing, like, "Wow, I had no idea that when I did X, you felt/believed Y. That's a bummer, thanks for pointing it out." Other times you get the: "You're a fucking asshole for speaking YOUR VERSION of the truth, you deceitful little tramp."

Fortunately, I've had more kindness than not in my life.



At 11:58 PM, Blogger Debra Broughton said...

I loved reading this post - especially "the interior walls of my self-esteem were built out of leaves and twigs, not brick" - which struck a chord.

At 7:33 PM, Blogger erik said...

Isn't Jordan Rosenfeld (my wife) just the greatest!



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