I’m finding that the longer I’m on this planet, the less I feel I understand about life. It’s amazing how I don’t feel like I know myself as well as I had thought I did. Very humbling realizations are hitting me in the gut. A pro fighter is punching me hard, and knocking all of the wind out of me.
I don’t always like the new Wendy, that comes to my attention. I don’t like admitting that I’ve been wrong. I’ve had such confidence about how well I’ve understood myself. After decades of therapy, it’s becoming clear to me how much remains hidden, when we’re not ready to see the truth.
I’m nearly 50, and I’m beginning to understand myself better(I hope!). All of us are multi-faceted, and impossible to define in any cogent way.
I’ve read that our brains are wired to notice and remember the negative encounters we have from moment to moment. It has been, at least for myself a real struggle to acknowledge that behind the shadow of intense pain, is great light. The light of possibility, of hope. The chance to become more like the person I’d like to be, and less controlled by old ways of thinking and interpreting reality.
I am realizing that it’s not really possible to label my chronic illness as physical, or emotional in a pure sense. I’ve known this for awhile, but I’m starting to discover it in a way that doesn’t involve my rational mind.
It’s kind of like trying to understand what an apple is, from an analytical place, having never seen or eaten one. Then there’s holding the fruit in your hand, crunching into the apple and realizing that you had no idea of what an apple really was. Sensing, and feeling, rather than overthinking.
I’m getting the opportunity to understand myself in layers, instead of in a simplistic head based way. I’ve found that all of the thinking has lead me away from myself.
Do you know who you are? Not the you that other’s see you as, but the you that is real, that sparkles, and suffers, and glows. The you that is trapped by the perception you grasp onto so tightly of yourself. I would bet that you are more, not less worthy of great joy, than you imagine yourself to be. That you are tied to the story of yourself that has been reflected in your family’s eyes, in the eyes of acquaintances, of lovers, of dear friends.
Try to remember, especially on those dark days, where despair is looming over you, that there is more to know about yourself than you do. That certain self-discoveries are painful, but that they can serve you, too. The darkness makes clearer the light.