It has taken a long time to go from the more fiery personality I was to the more equanimity-oriented personality I’m working through now. I don’t miss it. Not one bit. The explosive dynamic is not appealing to me. I spent most of my life trying to validate myself or protect myself from being invalidated. I was working on the premise that I was hoping, trying, praying to be worthy, and I was trying to be worthy, and I was pretty sure I should be worthy, but without the approval and validation of key archetypes in my life, it wasn’t in the bag. And that was incredibly hard, because that approval and validation was slippery and not reliable and I was desperate for it and interpreting everything that didn’t feel like approval as pure threat.
Marrying Tucker was amazing because I feel so completely loved and supported all the time. It’s remarkable and it’s freed me to rest in a place of pure love and work out from there. Really, I never could’ve imagined feeling as consistently loved as I do with Tucker, and so he, clearly, is the most enormous blessing – and he taught me to bring this same sensibility into parenting, which tempered me in the most beautiful way (without his influence, I couldn’t be the person I am, and as the person I am is so much less stressed and anxious and wanting things to go a certain way, I am forever grateful.
And yet I have my moments. And often they come after a certain amount of “letting things slide” and not using my voice, so it stores and comes out at once. Ten or twenty years ago (I can’t believe I can say that, and yet, here we are) it would’ve come out pretty venomous, entitled and angry. Today, it came out probably pretty angry, but mostly just saying “enough” and giving the reasons why it’s enough, and how I’m feeling and how I’d like to be treated. I’m grateful to be learning.
And, of course, present moment awareness doesn’t cling to old identities. Doesn’t assume I’m going to behave the way I used to behave. I mean, there are a lot of habits and thus are easy to fall into. But present moment awareness is asking what’s possible in THIS moment, and knows how to tend to mishaps and errors and isn’t so hell-bent on scheduling the whole universe. Present moment awareness lets me feel curious. Habitual awareness always had me looking to apply “me” to whatever was going on… what do I know about this, how would “I” react, what’s my sense of justice that is being infringed upon? But these questions weren’t inquiries so much as split-second assessments so I could act and triumph. Yeah, triumph. that was a trip.
I wanted some grand triumph. All the time. Finally, my aspirations are far more humble.
Being awake in the present moment. Wouldn’t that be a triumph?