Monday, 14 April 2014
OK So I Have Clarity.......Now What?!
Clarity is a wonderful thing. And it took me 40 years to get it! Clearly I am a slow learner! But here's the thing about clarity.....now that I have it, I don't know what to do with it.
As I sit here on this rainy Monday, sipping tea and listening to the dogs snore on their beds, I have a very clear picture of how I got to where I am. How I became this person that I have become. The way I was raised. The choices I've made. The inevitable mistakes I've made. (sometimes more than once, just to be sure)
And I know who I am now, who I wish to become, and what I want for myself and the new family I am building. It's a wonderful feeling! Knowing who you are and where you wish to go. And knowing you have people willing to make that walk into the future with you. Believe me, I've waited a long time!
But there is a darker side to clarity. It's the side that has prompted many of my recent blog posts. The side that shows you that the kind of relationships you thought you had with friends and family members may not be what you always thought they had been. You may realize that these relationships have grown and changed over the years, and have become something different than what they started out to be. Maybe they have improved and grown stronger - which is wonderful. Or maybe you have outgrown them. Maybe circumstances in your life (or theirs) have changed, and thus the friendship changes too. I think I have a few instances of this happening in my life right now. Does it hurt that these people no longer consider my friendship a priority? Hell yeah it does! But at least I see it clearly. Doesn't make it hurt any less, but I can make sense of it. Which I always need to do!! I don't like things that don't make sense - in case you haven't met me! ;)
Clarity allows you to look at these people, sometimes friends, sometimes parents, sometimes siblings, and understand who they are. Just as I have done with myself, the 40-something clarity has allowed me to look at people close to me and understand why they treat me the way that they do. How the circumstances of their lives and their childhoods have shaped who they are and how they interact with the world around them.
So does this power of clarity help me understand why they treat me (and others) the way they do? Yes, yes it does. But it still leaves me wondering what the heck to do with it!!! I can look at a person's past and understand how the tragedies of their childhood, or the abandonment by a parent, or the emotional abuse, or the quest for perfection, etc, etc, have shaped them. I can see how the way they treat the people around them is a defence mechanism, or a wall to ensure real feelings are not allowed in or out. I can see that they have built these walls and "been this way" for 40, 50, 60 years and are unlikely to change at this point. Yup, seein' it all. Crystal clear!
OK, so I have clarity......now what?!
No seriously! Now what? What the heck am I supposed to DO with this new-found clarity? This understanding of why the people in my life choose to treat me the way they do does nothing to help me toward that goal of figuring out how to have them interact with me in a respectful manner. To have them treat me like an adult, as a responsible parent, as a smart, intelligent, funny human being who deserves nothing less than their respect.
Or maybe it does.....maybe every time I blog about, chat about it with a friend over coffee, rant about it to my wonderful guy or cry about it to the dogs when no one is home......maybe every time I do that I am taking one tiny baby step closer to figuring out what to do with this thing called clarity.
And maybe those baby steps closer to figuring it out, are the baby steps back from those toxic and hurtful relationships.
Maybe every time I have a conversation (be it in person, over the phone, or via text) that makes me feel "less than", I am taking one tiny step back. The conversations become shorter with more time in between, the visits are not as often and I find myself turning down invitations. Baby steps back. Moving myself slowly out of situations that have left me feeling sad and frustrated and broken and less than for many many years.
So now that I've gotten my thoughts out in a rather rambling manner (I apologize for that) it seems that maybe I did know all along what to do with this clarity. It's baby steps.
Baby steps toward that new life, that new beginning. That safe, secure, supportive home with my wonderful sweetheart and my amazing son. Where we are free to be ourselves. To make mistakes and be supported. To laugh, to cry, to love, and to be who we are meant to be.
And baby steps back, from those that have made me feel less than..........slowly but surely, I am stepping back.
"Clarity - your soul is guiding and supporting you every step of the way."
~ The Lazy Gourmet