I came to the realization today that I am an oxymoron. I mean really, there is an exception to every rule with me and I may approve of something in one instance but in a different set of circumstances feel completely different about whatever that thing is. I sometimes wish I was more consistent. But there is constancy in my inconsistency.
I am a self-proclaimed wall flower and happy to be there. Unnoticed in a crowd and quite content to observe. Unlike many other people with the leo birth right of center stage, I prefer to stay in the shadows. But this isn’t always the case. Sometimes I am perfectly comfortable being the center of attention, the go-to, the axis by which others move. For instance, my job is place I am very comfortable in that role. But move me outside that role and I shrivel up and that blossoming beautiful flower that reached out toward the sun in all its fullness, shouting here I am, look at me, suddenly folds up and shrinks down into the shadows, mellow and delicate – and is happy and content there. The same flower but so different.
So I began to realize all the ways in which I could benefit if I could just figure out a way to translate that confidence and strength in other parts of my life. I am at a loss on how to do that. It’s like that little kid riding a bike for the first time. When they know that someone has a hold of the back of the bike and that they are in control they ride with a confidence that is beyond themself. Becasue they trust the other person holding on to the back. But as we all know, eventually that person is going to let go of the bike and we will ride with boldness until we realize that they aren’t back there any more. And we almost always inevitably crash. That’s how it is with me in life. I do fine when someone’s in control in back but as soon as I realize that they have let go, down I go – crash and burn. How do you keep riding? How do you keep from falling? How is it that we move from not being able to stay up on the bike to after years fo not doing it we can just get up and do it, like we have alwys done it – like riding a bike?
Once upon a time, like with my job, I was like a little baby learning to walk. You crawl, you get to your knees, you brace yourself, you try to take a step, you fall. You get back up again. And sometimes, you see something you have to have and that is all you think about. You are so focused on what you want that how you get there doesn’t seem to matter. And so you get up and you walk over to it, and then when you get there, you realize that you walked there. A feat you had been unable to accomplish prior to that moment. My job was very much like that, there was something I wanted and I was going to accomplish that goal. I walked! Or rather, I broke free from what ever stigma had kept me shackled in the previous position and I got what I wanted. I walked the talk I had seen others do for years. And it worked! And it has continued to florish that way for me ever since – in my work. Not personally, not socially. Socially I find that I am timid and unsure of myself and how others will receive me. But why? Why do I worry? Why do I care? Perhaps if I could figure that out I would be free of it? Of caring and feeling restricted by the rules of do’s and don’ts and what people will approve of and what they won’t. It is a task, like a check list to determine what others expect of me and then to perform accordingly. Unfortunately, as much as that might be a strength it has proven to be my weakness in so many ways. I want to be strong and carefree. Free like a bird to go and fly where ever the wind blows with concern for my responsibilities. Without fear of the duties I have sworn myself to. And then perhaps I would break free personally. I would launch my self on the next wave that comes my way and ride that wave with confidence and joy.
This blog has been a culmination of several weeks. Several different stages of thought and I think that its evolution has been good. I am trying my best to take my lot in life and be content with it. Recently I have had the chance to reconnect with some people I have not seen or talk to in years. And it is funny that at some point it always comes back to whether or not I am in a relationship? Married, etc. I am not. And, for those of you who wonder, it isn’t the end of the world. In many ways it is a simpler life, I am sure. Though truthfully, I wouldn’t know about the other side, I have never been married. Nor have I ever been in a realtionship that was long term. Or even one where I am sure that I was loved, so for me the other side is unknown. I can imagine what it must be like, but I do not know. All I know is what singlehood is like. And I am comfortable there.
As I sit in my hotel room looking out over the fog enclosed ocean, I can imagine what life is like here, and I can talk to people about what it’s like and I might think it would be great, but until I experience it myself, I won’t know for sure. I hear people say that a wise person will learn from the choices of others. Unfortunately, I am mostly a fool. I have to learn things on my own. I have to experience some things for myself. And I realize that the results of other people’s choices may not translate the same for me or for others. So, for me being single is all I have known and it is a strong tool that I can use to benefit others in a way that I never could if I was a couple or married. One of things that I have realized in recent months is that I am extermely selfish. I do not have to consider any body else but me when I make decisions in my life. When I bought my car, it was all about me. When I decided I was going on this vacation I didn’t have to ask anyone else. I just went.
My most precious gift is time. I hold on to it tightly and I do not give it away easily and I can be reluctant to commit it to anyone or anything. But I have realized that I use that gift to benefit others. I have been trying to figure out ways that I can refocus my attention onto others. One way is by volunteering at church. I know it sounds easy but it is not. I do not like giving my time away but by giving my time to others is a way I can let go of self and learn from others. The children’s ministry has been looking for people for months. And I know that I need to go and give of my time. I know that there are lessons there for me to learn and to grow.
Another area that I really want to stretch outside my comfort and move into new areas of boldness is to volunteer a soup kitchen. To put myself into the service of others. This is how I can give and love others. This is what I can do. What can you do? What is it you whiteknucle almost to death? What do you reluctantly give? Where can you let go and fly freely?
In trying to finish this blog, it has disconnected half a dozen times. And each time I think I have saved it and I have accomplished what I wanted with it, it comes back online unsaved. I have rewritten it multiple times. I can only think that there is something that doesn’t want me to speak. There are words that you need to hear, need to read and chew on and it si trying to keep me from it. So understand this has been a difficult journey.
I want to convey to you how difficult it is for me to translate my boldness in my work into my socialy and private life. I hoep to do that by giving the only thing I have to give and hopefully inspire you to consider that which you hold onto and find a way to give that as a gift to others.
For me time is a sacrifce that I have been unwilling to give. But I find now that I need to otherwise I think that I will continue to fold up into myself and suffocate and die. I want to blossom. I want to flourish and think that by giving the gift of my time to serve others will be a way that I can learn to translate my life into something more.