Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Reflective Response

The other day I almost deleted this blog.  Perhaps one day I'll get into the reasons I had for doing so, but for now I'll just say I hit a wall, and after hitting it I had some decisions to make.  At one point, thanks to some very good friends, (you know who you are :), I woke up to the fact that my response to a situation occurring in my life was to self destruct.  Why would I do that, I asked self?  In the end, it doesn't matter why I would do it, but more that I don't go through with it.  I looked to destroy something of such value to me, something I've been working toward for a long time now, and to kill it while the momentum, and enthusiasm for what I'm doing here is ripe would be like a kind of suicide.  Worse, actually. 

That night I received a comment in response to a post of mine, then hopped over to the new post by Zebra Sounds author Judy Clement, (who left the comment on my blog), called "On Mondays, I Talk About Love."  With her comment, then her blog, I felt the final nail go into the coffin of my self destruct tendency.  It left me completely.  No more destroying things I love.

I left a comment on Judy's blog in response to her recent post, thanking her, and in light of my looking at reflections in my life, I want to share with you the comment I left for her, and her response:

[My comment]:  I actually go thru what you are walking through writing a book every time I write a blog. It is a challenge for me to click “publish” every single time I write. My heart picks up a beat in fear, with all the questions you are asking yourself. I am a beginner, j, and you are an inspiration to me, and help give me courage. For reasons I’d rather not go into here, I damn near deleted my blog today, even after I wrote what I did. If not for your comment, and for a couple of other encouraging acts today, my blog would surely be gone now.

I believe what most folks don’t understand about writers is it’s not all about writing. I’ve had many people critique my writing and I’ll ask, “But what did you think or feel about what I said?” Writing is just our form of expression of what is inside us. And for me anyway, it’s what I’m writing more than how I’m writing that is important. I could care less if my writing is “correct,” just as long as what I’m trying to convey is understood.

For me personally, I’m not writing like I’m giving a performance on stage. I mean the shit I say, which means I feel like I just took all my clothes off in public. I feel like I’m doing that every time I write a blog! Here you are, “blog savvy,” and you are worried about a book! One day, when I grow up, I desire to write a book, just like j :), and dream of having it published.

You give me hope that I can do it. You give me courage to do it. Thank you for your courage, and your perseverance. One of my favorite quotes is: “Courage is fear that has said its prayers.” Courage isn’t the absence of fear. Courage wouldn’t be necessary without fear. You, in your courage, are the deep breath I needed today. Just thought you should know.

[And her response]:
      I’m so glad I commented. Your post was wonderful, and the big bad blogosphere needs more wonderful posts.  I’m not blog savvy. I get nervous when I hit publish too. And the closer I write to my heart, the more nervous I get. Will people relate to what I have to say? Is it too much, too little, too personal, not personal enough? (That’s before I even get to the question of whether I said what I meant to say.)

      I kind of think that your nervousness and nakedness are the very things that will make you worth reading. Maybe it’s when you stop feeling that way that you should stop blogging. xo

Look at that last paragraph!  Isn't that fantastic??

I take risks.  I feel more alive when I take risks.  Pushing against a wall inside myself to express more, to love more, to put myself out there, expose.  The reason I decided to live this way is about trust, which is synonymous with love.  I'm learning to trust self, trust God, trust life, trust.  The only way to test that, and in my humble opinion to strengthen that particular muscle,  is to do  Lay it all out there.

But I realized something with Judy Clement's response:  I've been trying to get rid of this self conscious feeling I've had in me for longer than I can even remember.  Stage fright, whatever you'd like to call it, is something I don't particularly like experiencing.  So I've been trying to find some way to destroy it too.  Judy's response had the effect of letting me see that perhaps it's not such a bad thing to have inside me.  That maybe, just maybe, acceptance of it within me is the way to go.  Because she's absolutely right.  It is the feeling that lets me know I've just taken a risk...that I've just gotten honest, gotten naked.  I can't tell you how excited I am about accepting this part of me that has caused me havoc my entire life!  I didn't realize it was my view of it within me that was creating the havoc.

One of my favorite movies is French Kiss, starring Meg Ryan, and one of my favorite scenes, (besides the one where she says, "Happy people make my ass twitch."), is when she says, in response to what she thinks men want from women, "I'm supposed to be this pouty little girl, who says yes when she means no, and no when she means yes, and I cannot do it, okay?  Happy--smile, Sad--frown, use the corresponding face with the corresponding emotion."  That is so me.  And frankly, I'd rather be that person who is that honest.  Anything else, in my book, is me trying to cover up, pretend, playing a game with myself first, then another.  That's not living to me.  Because that isn't expressing what is true inside me.

So I thank my friends who let me express the other day, and who helped me get back on track.  And I thank Judy Clement for pointing out that a very big part of me is actually a good thing.

A very good thing.  :) 


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