On being unapologetic
This one goes out to Deirdre, my therapist in my late 20s.She and I had been working really hard on getting me to stop saying, "I'm sorry". She gave me a book: "The Drama of the Gifted Child"
here's a little book review on that:
'Why are many of the most successful people plagued by feelings of emptiness and alienation...?' One word: survival. Good work surviving. Now, you don't have to do that anymore. Stop it. Figure out who you are and go be awesome.
Lifework for you: 1. Start your Project: Love, Me. 2. Commit to it. 3. Read that book. 4. Seriously.
Now, I was still saying, "I'm sorry", years later, when I began my Project: Love, Me. So, I pulled that good old drama out again.
And I saw this:
In my 20s I'd come to the end of an adventure in my life and that end looked a lot like failure.
PSA: Sometime, after EVERY success, there is a fallout.
It's the law of impermanence, people.
Every awesome thing that happens will eventually deteriorate. That's why you gotta do you...and not go doing stuff to get attention and to win and to prove something. That's why you have to be inspired and whole and excited and KEEP ON CREATING.
5. Get that. 6. Seriously.
(Because you don't want to go through this)
I had my first death of a dream. I'd failed. I turned on myself. I started hearing how angry people were that I'd done something different.
It may not even have been anger they were expressing at all - likely misunderstanding, disbelief, jealousy, or fear...regardless of what was actually expressed, I heard anger. Because that worked for me, judging and ridiculing myself for falling apart.
Underneath it all, where that little light of love flickered, I wanted support.
Underneath it all, I was sad I didn't get the support I wanted (and deserved - PSA #2: every last living thing on this planet is ENTITLED to support. Anybody who doesn't agree, go away).
And instead of honoring that sadness, I pretended it wasn't true and just kept asking the same people. The people I was "supposed" to be supported by. The people that I "could" reach out to.
I wanted them to understand. I wanted them to believe. I wanted them to be proud. I wanted them to be fearless with me.
They didn't. They wouldn't. They weren't. The'y couldn't.
And I was angry. I was stubborn. I was jaded. I was embarrassed. I was fearful.
They were a mirror, reflecting what my fear had me telling myself I deserved.
I'm sorry. I'm so so sorry.
When it was time to forgive, release, let go and LOVE, I saw that fear. I was frightened to reach out for what I wanted, like standing on the edge of a cliff, stepping out and praying to whatever diety, universal element or higher version of myself might catch me as I swiftly plummeted.
I swore there was no one like that there.
So I tried to do it myself again.
And I continued, passionately apologizing to everyone around me.
Funny turn of events: Suddenly, this new crew around me just wasn't in the business of accepting apologies.
I'd taken the step without knowing.
I'd intended to be supported, to be loved. I'd intended to come back, to thrive, to do what I wanted, to create something fresh and new and powerfully beautiful in this world.
My intention had been HEARD.
A new support had come. They waited, patiently for me to stop apologizing.
I refused. I feared. I saw so many reasons to believe they'd let me down. I saw so many reasons I didn't deserve to take that seat and be the words that another could hear to step out of her own hell, out of her own lonely world where she was sorry,
for being herself.
And then I started apologizing to myself.
"I'm sorry that I say I'm selfish that I did what I wanted to do." "I'm sorry that I made myself wrong that I don't go visit." "I'm sorry that I don't speak up when people speak to me that way." "I'm sorry that I blamed myself for letting him do that to me." "I'm sorry that I apologized for changing my mind." "I'm sorry that I thought I couldn't have more." "I'm sorry that I wasn't letting this amazing, gifted child be present for this world."
And then I stopped apologizing.
I am NOT sorry that I want to be somebody. I am NOT sorry that I want to see the world. I am NOT sorry that I want to be bright and alive and full of every bit of happiness that I can conjure up. I am NOT sorry that I get that it is my job to have the life I want. I am NOT sorry that it is each and every person on this planet's job to get that for themselves. I am NOT sorry that I'm sitting here, writing and willing each person I meet to step out of their hell and find company in their greatness.
I am. I can. I will.
Unapologetically. Unapologetically, life is here, for the taking, the living and the loving. Unapologetically, get up and go where you want to be.
Unapologetically, find the people who want for you what you want for you.
Unapologetically, stand that they rise to you and that, when they step forward, they stand for you to come along too. Unapologetically, screw up and learn. Unapologetically, get your hands dirty. Unapologetically, speak up if you don't like something. Unapologetically, never ever settle. Unapologetically, be you.