Thursday, August 27, 2009

Human Being: A Tough Gig

Blah, blah, blah, holy ground, blah, blah, mindfully barefoot in the now.

Do you ever wish you could take yourself off like an itchy sweater, hang your self up somewhere, and come back when you're ready to wear yourself again?

I'm trying to think of analogies, metaphors, images that describe the sheer weariness of dealing with my own repetitive crap. Whack-a-mole? Dusting in a sandstorm? Carrying water home in a sieve?

Or just not realizing the laptop was unplugged and the battery ready to die--thereby losing most of what I'd written here. Talk about living in the now--.

I've misplaced my debit card AGAIN. For a while now, I've been mostly careful. Mindfully putting the card back into my wallet and my wallet into my purse. (This is a major improvement over the whole drop it in my purse, pocket, car seat--or the bag of whatever stuff I've just bought--routine that I've kept for years. ) However, now not only will I be inconvenienced but I will have the opportunity to impose on others. Hey, if I give you a check, could you deposit in your account and then give me the cash back? Or, god forbid, I will have to actually walk into the bank and talk to a human person. Makes me wonder--am I distracted, human, or do I like to impose on other people and mess with myself at the same time?

You can't pretty up your shit either--it's like lighting a stick of incense in a locker room piled to the ceiling with week-old unwashed gym socks.It won't make any difference, no one will notice, and the place will still stink.

Worse are the stupid, self-centered, hurtful things I say and do while I keep trying to be this serenely loving person who embraces all of humankind, and dances barefoot on the holy blessed ground.With all those other holy blessed creatures.


Like all god's children I have feelings. Nice ones, exaggerated ones, hurt, lonely, peaceful, angry, anxious, fearful, jealous. All kinds.

Like everyone else.

Oh, look a bear inspires action--scared inspires doing something. Something seems to be wrong with a loved one--anxiety can inspire action.

Being pedantic, aren't I? Intellectualizing feelings, distanced and detached. But it IS true that feelings are...well, feelings. Emotions. The only reality they sometimes indicate in the weather in my head, the pinging in my brain.

Which avoids the whole reason for wishing I could shed myself and wondering, as I write, why I'm writing about it. Therapy, confession, or self-flagellation, the fingers keep hitting the keyboard.

The other day I pitched a fit. Not just a snit, a pout, but a true angry fit.

The kind nobody wants to talk about afterward--not the objects, the collateral damage, or the perpetrator.

One of those actions for which the phrase "and we will never speak of it again" was created.

The details of what triggered this outburst really aren't relevant. Some one did something that hurt me. I like that phrasing. It's very close to "see what you made me do." which can be used to excuse just about anything from spilled milk to genocide.

The point is I felt some crazy, conflicted, jealous emotions. Very, very real--that sick hollow feeling in my stomach. Tears that feel like a river at flood stage, ready to spill over the levee--that hit by a truck, panicked gut response.

Which is fine in that whole not fine way. An honest, instructive response.

Worth a discussion later. Much later.

But, oh, I discussed it then. First in that tightly pitched, everyone has done something rotten tone but with the superior edge that says I will rise above it. Next step, in my repertoire, is the cool, controlled, rational explanation of my point of view and the reasons I am most justifiably hurt and upset.

The feelings I have and the physiological response ARE unpleasant. I have every right to those feelings.

The horrible thing is knowing that abusing the other person--and verbal abuse IS abuse--is effective in reducing my tensions. The cycle of I'm hurt, I am a victim here, a victim I tell you, excuses the relentless pounding of how could you do this, you are so selfish, so thoughtless, so mean to me--see how I'm hurting.

Worse than that is the finale. I feel better. The tension in my body has lessened. The powerless child has regained some power, and the screaming tantrum throwing two year old has "shown them."

Now is the time for apologies. The fact that these apologies are sincere, the regrets deep--the equivalent of the abusive spouse's flowers--doesn't change the fact that hurting someone else has been used as therapy to ease my own pain.

The itchy sweater doesn't come off, not even sleep is enough to rid one--me--of my self. It's more like housework than anything. If you cook, if you eat, pots, pans, dishes get dirty and one way or another have to be washed. If you walk, the floors get dirty. Toilets have to be scrubbed because our bodies do what bodies do into the toilet--every day you get up to chores that never stay done because there is no done, not really.

And the bigger mess you made the day before, the more work today. I could stretch the analogy like silly putty of course--sheesh, you can throw the dishes, walk on the shards of the glass that can't be unbroken, choose to make pies of the shit and pretend it's blue ribbon....

Doesn't matter.

Human. You feel--I feel. Sometimes I--you too if you want to join the party--feel like crap, are treated like crap--and like any good primate, starting flinging the crap, and rarely only at the one who threw it.


It's a tough gig.

Do you ever wish you could take your self off...?


  1. Oh, boy. When I was pregnant, I loved being able to just let it rip. Part of my knew my hormones were overloaded, but part of it is because I had spent so much of my life being Understanding, of squelching down my hurt because I knew that the other person hadn't meant to hurt me so I "shouldn't" feel the hurt. The hormone shift just pushed me over the edge, gave me the excuse to unleash years of suppression and rage against the gods (and my poor husband, who walked on eggshells for months.)

    Now, I try to use my pain as a flag. Why am I hurting? What is inside me that is reacting? How much of it is what the other person did, and how much my interpretation?

    I'm doing much better. Unfortunately, for whatever reason, there are a couple people with whom I've gotten into a twisted pattern where I can't help but hurt them. It's as though some part of me has decided that, in this area, it's okay to treat them badly. I'm not proud of it, but I have yet to figure out how to change it.

  2. I use that--and this particular incident was a wake up to issues I hadn't realized were still troubling me.

    I am so damned understanding and kind and forgiving--oh, and did I mention understanding.