When

I wonder if there will ever be a time when my life and identity feel settled and I am able to just look at my life and say “This is it. Well done. Embrace it. Relax and enjoy.”

No matter how good things seem or settled I feel, or how OK I become with my status quo, invariably something disrupts the calm and suddenly, what seemed like solid ground and sure thing yesterday, seems unsteady and questionable. It could be a change at work, home, schedule, weight, health, social circle, etc.; but just when I feel like its all cool, something shakes me up and I’m struggling between staying put and uprooting and running (figuratively speaking.)

I want to be OK with myself, my life, my choices, my world. But that damn voice resurfaces time and again whispering “This isn’t it. This isn’t you. Things aren’t ok. You’re wrong. Watch out.” Old emotions, fears, anger, hurt, longings, hopes bubble to the surface and put me through the emotional wringer. I get paranoid and distrustful and start to withdrawal and doubt everyone and everything in my life and I feel like I don’t belong anywhere.

I worry that I’ll never learn to be ok with who I am, what I do, where I live, etc. I look back at my life and see my past self as a stranger. All those people now gone, homes and jobs left behind, plans never followed through. I’m not who or what I imagined and hoped I would be and I’m sometimes scared of who I’m becoming. But even if I try to change, am I doing it because I want to, or because I think I should? Will I be happy with the product when all is said and done? Is it weird that I like the person some people think I am more than the person I know I am?

Doubt has become the only thing I can rely on these days, and I’m tired from asking myself the same questions over and over again.

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10 Responses to When

  1. javabear says:

    Deep thoughts, Sean. Thoughts that I think many of us can relate to on some level. Myself, I’m waiting for my teenagers to leave the nest before I can start my life. I fear it won’t be there for me when I get there.

    I wish you well in your search for you.

  2. Ron says:

    “Human beings are not created as perfect figures. Many of us get the message that we’re defective or fear when we’re imperfect. We can acknowledge the concept that we are imperfect, and that is the way we are supposed to be. It’s what is called perfectly imperfect. True healing allows us to eliminate our adapted self, and rediscover our authentic self.” This is something I just read this morning of all places in former New Jersey governor James McGreevey’s book “The Confession.” It is a quote my Pie Mellody, a drug-addiction expert and college of John Bradshaw, the therapist famous for his work claiming and championing “the inner child.”
    Her model of recovery involves returning to childhood to reexperience your original traumas with the eyes of an adult. Through out our lives, Mellody believes, we adapt certain unhealthy behaviors and patterns in response to our faulty childhoods. Our attachment to these behaviors eventually take on addictive forms.

    Her answer is to tear down everything-our adult constructs (which she calls our “adapted self”) and our childhood injuries (our “wounded child) and then rebuild our lives around a spiritual core that allows us to be imperfect.

    Now this is the important part: “Human beings are not created as perfect figures. Many of us get the message that we’re defective of fear when we’re imperfect. We can acknowledge the concept that we are imperfect, and that is the way we are supposed to be. It is what is called the “perfectly imperfect.” True healing allows us to eliminate our adapted self, and rediscover our authentic self.

    I know this is a long reply (there I go making excuses) but I found this explanation for our feelings very profound. A long time ago, longer than I can remember, I accepted myself as I am and refused to allow others to define me. That was my road to recovery and self acceptance and contentment with my life and the world around me. Works for me.

    Just a thought. 🙂

  3. Zak says:

    That is why I live one day at time. I never plan too way ahead.

  4. “Man finish house, man die.” We’re always growing, and learning. And defining our “self”. Hopefully.

  5. Urspo says:

    Whenever you find yourself ‘looking back into the past’ I suggest you catch yourself, pause, take a breath in and call your spirit back from the past into the present. Pause again and tell yourself you and everything in the now is fine as it is, and proceed forward. Repeat as many times as needed.

  6. jayinva says:

    If I were half as talented, I could have written this. It was like looking in a mirror.
    Peace ❤
    Jay

  7. Richard says:

    Hugs from me to you. I don’t think things will ever reach a point where all is settled and we can relax. But I also think that’s the beauty of it all, in some ways. I’m sending much love and good vibes your way.

  8. rjjs8878 says:

    I feel like you’re describing my life. There is always something out of place in my life. I’ve somehow managed to accept it and go on each day.

  9. Sorry you’re struggling with the existential questions. I do that often as well and I rarely come out of it feeling like it was time well spent.

    For whatever it’s worth..

    Looking back and seeing your past self as a stranger might be a sign of growth. Looking at a former self and seeing a mirror imagine of current self means you have not changed…or been changed… by all the good & bad that has happened along the way.’

    That fact that you “…like the person some people think more than the person know is more likely to be about perception & perspective than likability. Everyone has things they choose to hide but, like hearing the sound of ones own recorded voice, the objectivity of the outside observer is often more accurate than what one sees though the filter of all the stuff in ones own head.

    …but what do I know? Feel better soon.

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