Hello, lovelies. I haven't been writing as frequently here because I've been writing essays and more thought out posts, vs. letting myself just write. And I miss just writing. So here's a little of that. Happy Saturday morning.
Behind every pair of eyes, there's someone
like us. - Neil Gaiman
The longer I'm around the more I realize we all have a little bit of everything in us. I am both dependent and independent, generous and selfish, discontent and full-up, spiteful and deeply forgiving. We're all made of the same bits. That doesn't mean we all express the same personalities, or that we all have the same strengths and weaknesses, or can deal with things in a similar fashion, or show up for our lives in similar ways. But I do believe we've all got traces of everything in us--from the stunningly bright, to the endlessly dark. And at some point along the path, we choose what parts of us we want to cultivate and which parts we recognize but don't feed.
There were so many things I thought I'd never do, or couldn't understand and judged in others, then as a result of pain or addiction or confusion, I found myself doing them. Hurting people I love, lying to get what I wanted, mixing up my priorities, going against what I knew to be kind and right, choosing alcohol over my daughter. And not because I am a sociopathic asshole, but because I am human.
I've also made judgments about people's relationships, parenting styles, desires or life choices only to come up against the experience myself and see just how little I knew. I knew nothing; less than nothing. Being a mother is a perfect example--The Great Equalizer, as I like to call it--of an area where I had lots and lots of ideas and judgments before I became one, and then I became one and, “Ohhhhhhhh, so that's why people don't see their friends for six months.” Or, “Ohhhhh, so that's why she wasn't 'handling' things the way I thought she should have."
Same goes for marriage.
Same goes for families.
Same goes for choices about work, or religion, or the way we dress.
Same goes for loss, or the grief process.
Same goes for addiction.
Same goes for just about everything.
We just don't know what other people are fighting, and why, and the specific way that life feels to them.
This doesn't mean we allow people to treat us badly, or that we don't create boundaries, or that we blindly accept all behaviors. But it does mean that none of it is personal. None of it! ISN'T THAT FREEING? That we are so interconnected, and so similar, and that we need each other, but all our paths are individual and deeply personal. That we all have a little bit of everything inside of us.
We can look in anyone’s and see a bit of ourselves. This goes for the wretched and the terrifying and also the extraordinary and magical.