To the woman secretly crying uncontrollably

Friday, March 30, 2018

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It's my birthday (Jan 2018), the last one in which I'll be turning 20 something.  I think to myself that I am an adult, this is not new to me, nothing I haven't thought about before but it feels more real this time.  I'm not scared but I'm sad, I cry. I think about everyone who's not here celebrating with me and blame myself for it.  I tell myself I should go to sleep. I caught a cold and I have taken some medicine, luckily this has made me sleepy enough to stop over thinking, questioning why I'm here.

***

2017 was that year in which I decided to let go of a lot of things. I don't know if we are all suppose to have one of those years. Something I do know is that, even though sometimes I have to remind myself why I moved here, I made the right decision.  It's hard to put your hands in the air when you're at the edge, to be brave and feel whole when you're doing something by yourself.

Becoming an adult is difficult, in theory it's easy.  You can do this by looking at yourself and deciding which is your better version. You take a pretty damn look at who you've been and what you've done. Then, you try to dig out all the bad and cut it by the root.  But the 'Old You' will not give up so easily, it won't let go, give itself up. It has gotten used to slowing you down, to make you doubt yourself and keep you away from anything adventurous that make life lovely and extraordinary.

For years I told myself that I didn't want to grow up, yet I aspired to feel like a person who's –confident, independent, successful, wise, self-sufficient, ambitious. Isn't that what we're suppose to do?  Even once I had decided that this is who I wanted to become, it didn't happen all at once.

You take the first steps (e.g. move out of your parents house) and you think you'll just keep going like that until you've finally become who you want.  But in reality it doesn't happen like that.  You will take a step and then pause, sometimes you'll keep going but other times you'll agonize and will look backfind a road blocked and cry. You will hang stricken in an empty space, between states, between the way you’ve been and the way you’re going to be. You'll ask people for directions and they won't know sh*t either, and this will lead you to many nights looking at the ceiling thinking 'Is this it? Is this the best life has to offer?'

I am not the type of person who has a plan, but I'm also not the kind that says 'the plan is to not have a plan'.  I really haven't been able to come up with one because well.. I still don't know what I want.  Limiting myself has always been scary simply because if things don't turn out the way that I want then that means I've failed.  The truth is that people (myself included) don't like to talk about their failures, it's embarrassing and we have gotten used to keeping them to ourselves as if it's some sorta taboo. It's okay to want to get up by yourself, to be independent and to not depend on others but it's also good to talk to someone.  It's surprising what a person can say to you, and what you'll discover by allowing yourself to fall apart every once in a while.

***

It's Easter Friday (yes, today), lunch time but I am not hungry because I've been keeping my mind occupied like I always do.  Last night I did something I usually wouldn't do.  I went to a women's circle, a safe place, a refuge of trust and love.  I normally would have said something judgmental like 'that's for hippies' or stayed away simply because I had never felt confortable hanging out with a bunch of women (especially if I didn't know them). But I went, and allowed myself to be vulnerable around them, and it felt good. I discovered that I'm like a werewolf, one self is not big enough to hold the other.  I am not perfect, there's a lethal side of me that is not always selfless and empathetic. This side is also not a monster, it's just bigger more lethal and is bursting out of me. But you know what? It's okay to be lethal in the ways you fight for your life.  Be lethal in your demands for joy, respect, progress. Step out of what is used up and useless, be lethal and unmoved in your certainty that there's serenity ahead.

...........but how do you get there?

By accepting people into your life. The ones we start with are rarely the people we end with. Ask yourself these questions about the people currently involved in your life: Do they make you feel safe? Do you feel able to show all parts of yourself to them? Do they feel like your people? If yes, then breathe easier. Lucky you. If no, then why?

Slow down, I ended up in so many shitty situations by not thinking things through, by not recognizing the pull of my own toxic behaviors or the obvious signs that someone was bad news and wouldn't leave me better than when they had found me.  Take a few minutes, follow the map back.  Remember, in the past you did this, then this, then this, and ended up here, without anything.  Nod like you’ve discovered something, even if you’re just as confused. 

Learn to be by yourself and for yourself. It comes from movies, I think, the belief that in order to experience love we have to surrender to it. Be consumed by it, or else you’re not doing it right. Be captured, or else what’s the point? Be eaten whole by it or whatever. I don't think I believe this anymore, I've gotten my heart broken twice. Love's not a dinosaur, it’s two people doing right by one another again and again and again until the last time they speak. I enjoy so much to spend time by myself, to cycle somewhere with a book and the music I want playing softly in the background.

Okay, here we go, this one is a difficult one. Let go. It may mean letting go of people you’ve grown out of, ideas that don’t make sense to you anymore. Plans that didn't work or won't fit anymore. It may mean simply saying 'I don’t think I want eggs for breakfast today. I actually hate eggs and I’m a vegan now.' Because holding on to what doesn’t nourish you is like wearing an old pair of shoes that don’t fit and are full of rocks. They’re slowing you down. So take them off.

But it’s haaaaaard. I know. But not forever. It will be easier. It will be good. You will be good.

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