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Don't Forget Yourself!

Posted in Adventures With Humans

Feather Start

For some reason, I wake up with the bottom dropped out, no bumpers, no life jacket, no training wheels, and no brakes for that matter. Where did this come from? Before I’m to the coffee maker, I’ve got a big ol’ knot in my craw; I’ve let go of all of the posturing, the reframing, the clocking so that things are bearable, and I’m left with the reality that things really were lousy, for one simple reason–I TRUSTED.  I know in past essays, that I’ve spoken of forgiveness, and that’s right and good, but you know I think there’s something in the idea of trust that came to me this morning. I think maybe it’s okay to acknowledge that I was supposed to, yes, trust in the universe–that’s our organic setting, my only job as a newborn and onward, but things were crummy, so my trust was betrayed and I was in “sucker” mode.

…why am I feeling like this right now? I really thought I had moved on. The intensity of today came out of nowhere, although Jung would disagree with that assessment. Nothing comes out of nowhere.
And then THIS pops into my feed:
Forgiveness is one of the really difficult things in life. The logic of receiving hurt seems to run in the direction of never forgetting either the hurt or the hurter. When you forgive, some deeper, divine generosity takes over. When you can forgive, then you are free. When you cannot forgive, you are a prisoner of the hurt done to you. If you are really disappointed in someone and you become embittered, you become incarcerated inside that feeling. Only the grace of forgiveness can break the straight logic of hurt and embitterment. It gives you a way out, because it places the conflict on a completely different level. In a strange way, it keeps the whole conflict human. You begin to see and understand the conditions, circumstances, or weakness that made the other person act as they did.
JOHN O'DONOHUE,  Excerpt from his book, ETERNAL ECHOES
Jesus. Synchronicity. I had been thinking about O’Donohue this morning, grateful for him.
Coolio. Say more!
In  "Anam Cara,” he spoke about thresholds, and I was thinking about the hard time I was having, and aware that, though a bit scary, it was a valuable experience, access to further deepness; I know what it’s like to be so close to the edge, to not be sure how you’re going to make it through the next five minutes, let alone the rest of the day. I know what it’s like to sit, and hang on to the arms of the chair and hold your body in it, despite the inner yearning that is fighting you, battling with you.
I’m sorry.
Well thank you. It’s not wonderful, but pull back and observe and it is true that I can offer sincerity and compassion to others riding the white-knuckler from actual experience, not from a text book. It’s really something to be aware; “Wow, this is happening. I am really having these thoughts.”
I’m not leaving that subject–because it’s a doozy, but I want to ask you about O’Donohue’s synchronistic quote. What is your reaction?
You’ll think that it sounds cheesy.
I love cheese.
Well…I suppose that when I drop all of the reframing and get to the real dirt, I think I could stand to forgive myself. Does that sound selfish? I mean, the reframing is essentially taking dickishness and making sense of it, though the root cause did not involve me. I get the freeing part but I’ve never felt it fully.
Well, say more.
Look, I will barf if I have to go back over everything. I’m giving myself a pat on the back for doing my best.

How about a little something for the kid over here!”

I think that in the effort to forgive, it’s important that we don’t dismiss ourselves, throw ourselves out with various babies in various tubs of bathwater. Yes, as O’Donohue says, “it places the conflict on a completely different level.” But in my trust– my naked, fledgling human, pre-flight-beak-agape, I am loaded with potential. I am bright-eyed, the feathers poised to fill me out are grand, exotic and will hold me in the air with such grace and focus that you can hardly believe it; I have so much trust. And I can feel this good energy, fired up for coming flights–but if it doesn’t happen–left hungry and with a tumble out of the nest, I have done nothing wrong. To be charged with reframing so that I can hold others without holding myself is to drain completely. In this depleted state, I might as well not exist at all. I am nothing but feet for shoes, and head for hat and who cares?

I think you’ve hit on something.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard, “You have to forgive,” but there is no mention of forgiveness of self, and do you know what?
Tell me.
I think it’s our task to fulfill our potential as best we can. Go big, because you were built that way, otherwise you wouldn’t be suffocating–I am suffocating here... If you were meant to pander, you’d have the whole outfit with the knee pads, and you’d be blissfully happy.
Yikes. ME help us!
Nobody will respect you if you’ve sold out, settled for lesser-than, because they’ll be able to sense it. You won’t be lit up.
Lit up?
Anyone who goes through this tough journey with the falling-out-of-nests, having the rug pulled out from them, and other metaphors, has the potential to rise higher than someone who…who fell asleep in the nest and has feathers covered with cracker crumbs. Be true to yourself and the drive that you feel. Don’t go all timid and refrain from taking fuel. You need it, and we all need you to have it because we want your loot, to paraphrase a Salinger quote again. You go through all of this, you get your fuel, and then you grace the world with so much more, with your potential gifts, and not just a forgettable safe squawk and a bunch of crumbs.
Back to the other thread; you’re okay?
I’m really glad you’re here. Must be the stars.