“No one can make you feel inferior without your consent”.
Eleanor Roosevelt (1884 – 1962) U.S. diplomat, author, and human rights campaigner.
I wish I could say to you that things have panned out as I imaged they would after college or even as I thought they would for me at this point in my life. But they haven’t and in many ways it feels rather backwards. I am learning and feeling things that many of my friends and peers experienced long before. It seems inverted somehow, I can’t say I understand it beyond the fact that all of us are different and discover things at different times, in different ways.
Since the passing of my grandmother things have shifted for me in a way I haven’t really been able to articulate. Mainly, because I don’t understand it myself. But I think now I may see what it is that’s bothering me. As I may have mentioned before my grandmother was a saint. She supported me in everything I did. She was the main person who pushed me to discover and develop my artistic interests. When she passed away, I was of course terribly sad, but internally very happy that the pain had finally ended and comforted that one day I would see her again in the life beyond this one.
But something remained, some unknown residual feeling that I could not understand. And this feeling would stop me at any given point in the day and I would be consumed in silent thought, stirred by something that resembled anger, and wounded by a deep hurt whose origin I could not locate.
I think that though I loved my grandmother and miss her, this feeling came from the dissatisfaction of my current state in life, and how I ultimately feel about myself.
In realizing the shortness of human life, how much she had achieved in comparison to how little I feel I have achieved, it put a slow burn on that anger. Never quite so hot that I lose my mind but always there in my chest a constant dissatisfaction spilling over into a embittered emotional state. To be perfectly honest : I’m pissed as Hell that things are the way they are. I seem bound in so many ways by so many things I can’t control when it is my greatest desire just to be…free. And in discussing these things with a certain person as well as two other events that occurred within the last few days of this week I have come to realize something.
The only things I am bound by are the things I let imprison me.
I let the environment and the behavior of others, determine my own happiness. It casts a strange light on how I perceive these years spent and what I have to show for it. I think the most important thing here is that it’s me and not circumstances or other people who determine how I feel. I let things make me feel a certain way. When I should be proactive and strain against letting things like that affect my emotions.
This, I think, is a pretty big frickin’ deal in a lot of people’s lives, and possibly there are folks who never realize or recognize that they are their own problem. They can’t look in the mirror and say that they love themselves because deep down there is a truth that struggles for recognition, that they are indeed the enemy, they are hurting themselves by allowing themselves to be hurt by crap that they have the power to just…let go.
It’s a big messed up deal, and I don’t understand it all yet. But it’s a beginning. And something needs to change here. I used to be a different person who was angry and mad, but ultimately rather fierce and resilient. Somehow that strength has dwindled and I have the feeling that I can’t reclaim that courage, that this is perhaps to hard a thing to change as engraved as it is in my nature. But by God I’m going to fight it. I’m going to change this thing. I have to. It’s gotten to a very dangerous place, a desolate wasteland of hopelessness and rage. And I’m not talking about assimilation or compromise either. I’m talking about finding that fire. If I cannot change my circumstances then I must change myself, how I perceive and deal with whatever might be going on.
And as often as I have said otherwise…it’s not to late to for me.