If you’ve been reading this blog, you have heard about how I was so anxiety-ridden I panicked all the way through a spectacular vacation. You’ve read that I couldn’t drum up the courage to call a good friend who had reached out to connect with me. And you’ve heard about how signing up for a retreat had me paralyzed with fear. There are a million more stories like that.
I couldn’t raise my hand in my MBA classes because my mind would be racing trying to analyze my answer, making sure it would come across perfectly. When in a circle, going around with each person asked to speak, I would be concentrating so hard on what my story would be, that I took in very little of what others were sharing. I made so deep this pattern of rearranging my thoughts and feelings before they left my mouth that if called upon out of the blue, I found I didn’t even have access to my deepest inner knowing. I would echo what someone else said, or say something that sounded good, or just make some damn thing up.
This was me. It still is me, some days. Protected by a complex strata of camouflage, facade, perfected pieces of me, and just sheer will to remain hidden. And wow mama, I have been so very good at it. I have been the one often forgotten, the one who is frequently called by someone else’s name, or started at blankly as it is attempting to be recalled. I have been completely underground.
For a while it was comfortable in there. At least more comfortable than not-in-there. And then it started to get really lonely. How could anyone see me, if I wasn’t willing to show up?
I can’t pinpoint a conscious decision to emerge. And let me state again that I am still working on it, every day. But as I open up a bit more, and trust the universe to deliver, I am rewarded again and again. It feels like unwinding. It looks like unwinding from a thatch of dark, thick, thorny vines. And then I want to find the other women who are like me, and help them emerge, too.
This is the woman I want to be. ')}