Posted by: LLS | July 15, 2012

Shadow Self

Lately I have felt like the world is spinning out of control. Not just out of control, but like it has tipped on its axis and I’m hanging on by a thread. My creation I know, but I feel there is more to it than that alone. Change is in the air, it makes me restless and scared of what may be around the corner. I’ve tried to grasp at old personality traits and old standbys to help ease the pain of change, only to make matters worse. A dear friend once told me, “if you are living in the past you can’t move into your future, you are just standing still looking behind you and reliving what was and what didn’t serve you then. Why would it serve you now? You weren’t happy then, why relive it now?” Well, in so many words that’s what he said. He’s right, I know that, yet some days I pull up memories of what felt good about the past in order to feel better right now. My heart forgets that tied to those good memories and terrible ones. All strung together like a badly beaded necklace. Some beads are pearls, some are diamonds, a few are broken, some missing, some jagged and just plain ugly. Right next to that badly beaded metaphorical necklace however, I wear a simple silver chain with a charm that says LOVE. I really do, one of my best friends gave it to me. When I look in the mirror I see it, everyday, and I am reminded of her and her love and all the good memories I have. I think about Love and all the different kinds there are in my life. I think of my other dear friend who sends me hugs when she can’t hug me in person. But at night, alone in the dark, I reach up and feel my necklace. I can even trace the raised letters but I can’t feel what it stands for, at least not in these moments. In these dark moments I feel unlove. The very absence of love. The disconnection one gets when they have forgotten who they really are. That’s how I feel, disconnected. Believe me if you don’t know what I’m talking about, consider yourself very fortunate.

It’s what I imagine Christians mean when they speak of someone losing their faith. I don’t consider myself a Christian because I don’t believe there is only one way to God, and I think Jesus would agree. The road to God or Enlightenment or the Universal Spirit or whatever you choose to call it are many, but that’s a different subject for a different day. I feel it’s all about being connected by Love and I’m simply not feelin’ the Love these days.

Instead of reaching for a better feeling place in the here and now, I reach back into the darkest places of my past and drag out old habits that in the end will have me miserable in no time. Why? Not sure. I guess I feel blue and I haven’t learned how to let go, not completely, of a love that almost killed me. Not in the  psycho murderer sense, but in the self-destructive, codependent relationship sense. Because as those who have had these types of relationships know, the highs are incredible high, the sex is phenomenal and the chemistry is undeniable. But with all those awesome things comes awful lows, terrible arguments and heartbreak. Not to mention low self-worth, low self-esteem and lots of second guessing your every thought. Need I go on? I think you get the point.

So what now? How do I face another long day of work and life and kids and chores and the feeling of lack. I can begin by deciding to choose my thoughts carefully. I won’t allow my mind to wander. I’ll stay focused on what I do want, not what I don’t. It’s so easy to be the shadow of who I want to be. I know that shadow-self better than anyone I’ve ever known. I have only just met the chosen-self, the one I am creating every day, adding bits and pieces to her with each new moment. Letting her discover what she truly loves about her life, letting her discover that she is okay just the way she is, letting her find grace in her actions and interactions. She is growing and changing and deciding every minute and if I can just get out of her way, if I can keep the negativity to a minimal, if I can envision things as if they already are here, she will discover Love., in all it’s glory, delivered in a myriad of ways she/I couldn’t have even imagined.

I think tonight, when I turn out the light and I close my eyes, I’ll fall asleep knowing the new me, the chosen me is going to wake up tomorrow happier and rested and I’ll let shadow-self sleep in peaceful slumber.


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