That makes twice now that I have switched my posts from public to private. I am really hoping not to panic again, but I cannot make any guarantees. Therefore, patience is a virtue I hope my readers already possess in abundance. If not, maybe you are here to have it developed, and apparently I am more than happy to oblige. Well, maybe happy is not the correct word, but no worries, most likely there will be follow up lessons regardless.
All kidding aside, I started this blog to let the people in my life get to know me. The reality of my crippling shyness has kept me from face to face sharing of my thoughts, likes and dislikes, dreams and beliefs……….. fill in the blank space with anything and I haven’t shared it; ever.
I have actually spent large portions of my life pretending to be something other than myself. The beginning set of years of pretending were the antithesis of the life I lived in my mind. I consciously did this because then no one could really wound my inner core. Not when it was bound, buried and locked away from view.
The second set of years was spent trying to fit into what I mistakenly thought would be a socially advantageous life for my children. Also to keep my core hidden from a husband who didn’t like the real me, but did like the pretenders, both the liar he married and the shadow I became. This did not go so well.
About ten years into that second set, I had a life changing event. I found unconditional love and acceptance on a scale I had never experienced and didn’t know existed. God is so very good.
After my acceptance of this unexpected love and grace, my fear of life began its downward tick. I still have good and bad days throughout which the fear continues to gradually diminish. And as with all difficult journeys, there are still mountains to scale and oceans to swim. (Over dramatic I know, but that’s me, like it or not.)
Unfortunately, I found my new-self trapped in the life of a pretender. I was completely lost in a world of my own making. I began to feel lonely. This was a new experience for me. So I ventured out of my make believe world, that had sufficed up until then, and began to be myself around my children. This was incredibly freeing, and this small taste of relaxation brought with it, the desire for more.
The only way I could find to change my situation, and release the grip of the pretender, was to pull my surroundings in close, and when possible, avoid everyone that knew me. I had to become completely self absorbed in an effort to try and find my lost self between the many layers of duplicity.
As it happens, the trauma of family upheaval, long working hours, and a shortage of funds made this easier to accomplish. Since this time, I never doubt that all things can work together for good.
So earlier today when I changed everything to private, I told myself that it wasn’t giving up, that I would keep writing in order to have a saved record of myself for when I’m dead. So that in posterity all could know me…….
Well, rat snacks to that! What the heck! Blah-Blah-Blah……. No matter how hard I might try to put a pretty spin on my reasoning, and dead isn’t pretty, you can’t dodge the fact that I was hiding again. Building walls because fear and failure are always on the prowl. Although this time the fear was not of failure, but of the consequences of success. Did I really want to let people in?
Anyway, there is this Ogden Nash poem my mother used to read to me, where Belinda is as brave as a barrel full of bears with a realio trulio pet cowardly dragon. I loved that poem, but it always made me feel inadequate. I never put together why until recently, when I realized that I was never the Belinda in that poem. I have always been the cowardly dragon that would fiercely spring to your rescue and gobble up all the dastardly pirates; but only if you absolutely needed me, otherwise I just spent my life hiding and building a nice safe cage.
In this blog, through these words, I am trying to coax the dragon out. The idea being, if I let you get a glimpse of the real me in these missives, perhaps it will be easier to engage and fellowship with honesty. Perhaps it will be enjoyable and I will start to care. Right now I feel like I have lived far too long as Maurice Sendak’s Pierre, who didn’t listen to those who loved him because it was easier not to care, than it was to want to fold the folding chair and go to town.
But don’t worry, even if I pack up and go to town with my writing, I will always be there for you if a circumstance arises where someone, or something, needs to be eaten or vanquished. Because you know dragon moms never truly disappear; they only go into hibernation.