Saturday, April 18, 2015

A Compass Not A Destination. Redefining “Being Whole."

When a random conversation with a best friend turned into a huge epiphany that  would re-direct my entire life, I shrugged, made some notes in EverNote (my new favorite app) and began the unraveling of yet another part of myself. I’m strangely comfortable with being a fluid concept. 

Historically,  I didn't care what "whole" meant. In my teens and twenties, I knew, unequivocally, that I was broken, but had no real interest in doing the work to be "whole." I only started trying to define what it meant for me after kids. The deficit between your "Best, energetic, vibrant, groomed" self was so large in comparison to early motherhood. So, I worked towards being those adjectives. That is hardly being whole. 

After my life cracked open and everything as I knew it was lost, gone or in need of repair, I thought I had a pretty keen idea what it meant. In my conversation with Julia, the concept came up.

“I believe it means to be as close as possible to being fully ‘in yourself’. To be aware and accepting of who you are.”

I felt pretty confident in this one, with the added:

"I’m sure even Gandhi has had doubting moments, so entirely whole is impossible, but as close as possible."

She replied, in the casual blasé tone she usually has:

“No. I just want to be balanced.”

I took the point and and agreed, thinking it further affirmed my point:

“Right! You can’t be balanced though, if not whole(ish) because what would you ground or center yourself  TO in order to  pull away from the extremes. The high points and the disappointing lows are too hard to handle, hence, needing to be solidly 'In yourself.’ "

“Hmmmm...No. I know who I am.” 

She said with zero affect, and she can, because she does. She’s always had this weird sense of self from a young age.

I cut her off and said: "That's it!” 

Again, I was wrong. I'm going to even preeminently say that I'll probably have this wrong too, but I've built in some wiggle room. 

As I now think I may see it: 

I renounce the term “to be whole.”  The very idea insinuates a completion, or a destination. No. I realize now, it's about figuring out who I want to be, and setting my inner compass to HER. The constant sprint, fall, forward, small-stepping, inching towards the woman I hope to be. 

I realize that some days I’ll trip off path, or deviate but then my hope is that I correct myself. If I am moving both forward and towards that “north star of the true self” everything seems to FEEL right. There is a great difference between that, and what I thought I wanted. 

My life hurts, change is uncomfortable, but I am seeing that when I stay on course with “The woman I hope to be” things feel right. Even if I fall, I fall forward, towards her. Events, people, life is falling in order of that compass. Not all of it is what I thought I’d want.

Most of it hurts but it feels RIGHT. It feels RIGHT to me. So I keep moving in that direction. 

Thank you, Julia for being you!

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