I’m five days into 2012, and I am not writing to tell you that I want to trade my word--STAND--in for a new one. I’m not. I knew I was going to need that word. That’s why I chose it.
While I would love to say that I am starting the year off strong--STANDING in the face of the waves of grief that are foaming and roaring all around me--the truth is that right now I want to sit and rest more than anything else.
And you know what? I know I can. I know I can sit. And rest. And that I’m not being unfaithful to my word for the year.
STANDing is an attitude. It is a commitment to not give up. It is a commitment to go again. It is a commitment to stay engaged with life.
NO word ever prohibits me from being human. Or weak. Or feeling frail.
I said in my last post that I see myself standing on a shoreline and I am being pelted by incessant waves. I’m digging my feet into the wet sand and I am bound and determined that I am not going to give up.
That’s still my stance.
But something else (that may seem quite contradictory) is equally true. When I think about where I am at in life, I see myself somewhere else too. I’m in a field. It looks dry and barren and like it’s been pillaged and touched by fire.
I am surveying what’s been burned and damaged beyond repair and I am sifting through the ashes—letting them fall through my fingers. I am taking stock of what I have lost. I am allowing myself to face what’s gone, and now the value of what I still have is ever so much clearer.
I am putting this out there because for the past ten years my default--my unhealthy coping mechanism--has been denial.
Denial twists, perverts, covers up, minimizes, pacifies, rejects, cajoles and scoffs at the truth. It parades as padding for the soul.
It seems like it’s protecting my heart from whatever threatens to puncture and pierce it, but instead it drives the most painful wedge into my being and keeps me in perpetual separation from health and clarity. (That was a heavy sentence, but if you have been married to and subsequently divorced your own denial, then you know what I’m talking about.)
So I want to make sure that I’m not saving face when I say that I am going to STAND in 2012. (Even though I am going to.)
Because I may also have a meltdown in the middle of the storm I have so valiantly declared that I am going stare into the face of. In fact, I may fall right down in a puddle of tears and momentarily get swallowed up by the foaming waters that ebb and flow over me. But I will get back up. I won’t give up.
Maybe I need to have this written and posted so that when I feel like I’ve lost my footing, I’ll remember. I scroll back to this page and I’ll sigh with relief and find the strength to get back up.
Or maybe simply giving myself permission to falter and fall and not do it perfectly will help me stave off my performance anxiety so that I can funnel my energy into the task before me. I don’t know. Because like I said, I’m only five days in.