The Woman In My Mirror
The woman in my mirror came with me this very busy and noted summer vaca… from my blog and life of reporting. So many things I can see and even more I cannot see became evident in my soul and life. There are many I will talk about throughout the next few weeks, but for now, I want to knock out a wall and open a new room in my head. And let’s start here; yes we shall.
It amazes me the number of things that are told to me about me and thus I must keep my mouth shut about them. The funny, albeit thinly veiled truth about this, is that most of it is about the negative side of thoughts about me. The person I am says let me talk to them and straighten them out about this complete rubbish, but the woman in my mirror says very sternly that I cannot do that as I am not supposed to know about these particular conversations. That just makes me angry and I have realized I have taken this gossip into my head and allowed it to rent space freely and become a part of the things maybe I should not write about. And that, my friends, follies, and foes; is just not right or going to happen. And this, my friends, follies, and foes; is just what we are going to talk about today. This will be the elephant in my room today. Actually, it could be many of ours (the elephant that is); that we do the walk on eggshells or want to not tip the egg crate over. So, today, let’s make scrambled eggs with the egg shells mixed right in today and see what comes out.
I have noticed that the good things about me that others say; well they never come back to me. I never hear “Well so and so said that you are the most caring person I know.” What I do get to hear is “Well so and so said that you are very bad at caring about others”. This is only a fictitious example as I cannot use the actual comments spoken. I am sure by now you are getting the picture and starting to think about this, and as you do you are shaking your head and “Damn she’s right”. And I am. When was the last time that someone came up to me and said “Did you know this person said that “You are the absolute best and I need to have you in my life”. It is a new concept for sure. It is not one used very often for sure. But I digress at this moment, so back to the task at hand.
I thought that I was so all past that caring what other people think and living other people’s thoughts of what my life should look like, but I realize that this is only partially true. I don’t care what you (the world) think about me in general; however, I do care when others think something they cannot tell me to my face. That is the point I have an issue with. You are more than welcome to think whatever bad or negative thing you want to about me; just tell it to me instead of spreading idle gossip that could potentially hurt someone else very much. I worry about the person who is not as secure in themselves and trying to sort out who they are and what they are. Me, I can take this shot at me for what it is and recognize it and then notice very quickly that it is starting to rent space for free in my head and throw that garbage away. Most times, if I look at the source of the comment, the person who said it in the first place; well I very quickly understand the envy and jealousy wrapped up in this bundle of very uninteresting and plain negative comment. It usually takes only a moment to see where they are in their life to understand that they only wish they had the strength, drive, perseverance, honesty, and woman in my mirror. And here we are back at the mirror woman again.
It has taken a lot of frustration and work and tears and anger and pain to get that woman to be the pillar of me today that looks back at me with pride and love. This woman trusts me to make better choices, live a better life, follow my gut feelings and live in the real world. My woman in the mirror today is me looking back at me. My woman in the mirror today is the person I always wanted me to be and dreamed I could be, but never really thought I could actually be.
For me, there were many stages to go through to get to this, very painful steps to get here. At first, when I got here into recovery alive; well there was so much more important stuff to deal with and sort out. There was just trying to get to enough meetings to stay clean, trying to only hang out with people who were staying clean, worrying that people with a lot of clean time would not want to hang out with me. Scared to death that these same people would not like me or want to be around me. Trying to listen enough to hear anything that would make sure I did not go back to that place where death was at my door. Back then, I wanted everyone to like me and everyone in the program to be upfront, honest, and good.
Then came the hurt of being let down and finding dishonesty and people around me relapsing and being terrified I could be next. So, I dug deep within me and did the hard work to get those fears taken away from my head and slay the dragons that might come alive to send me back to that life.
Then came a bit of self like that maybe I do have this and maybe I can stay clean and maybe I ‘m not that bad a person. Maybe I am likable. I remember how hard that was to swallow and believe in myself. The best analogy for me of my growth was, in the beginning, I hated getting my picture taken. And when someone did take it I hated the shot of me. I used to say “I’m just not photogenic”. This got better with a lot of time. Today I am okay with the pictures I am in. Today I am really okay as long as you don’t ask me to pose. I still get so nervous trying to do that. Thus selfies hourly are not ever going to be me.
Back to the amount of work that it took to get my woman in the mirror to be whom she is today. Once I realized and accepted that there is an end of me at the end of my fingers and toes and that your opinion does not have any place in my knowledge of me; that it is only your opinion and your state of mind that particular moment that will be the only things you use to form that opinion; well then it became clear that your opinions of me are clouded with your feelings and emotions and not my realities at all. They, therefore, have no visible truth or invisible reality. Do not get me wrong, you are still entitled to have them and I could give a rat’s ass (rat’s asses mean very little to me) that you do have them or keep them; however, I do ask a personal favor when talking about others and your opinions of them. Please be very sure that you at least consider the person for whom you are going to negate and how this may affect their feelings of themselves, especially if they are at a very precarious place in their life.
And here I am, back doing and being me again. The woman in my mirror has just taken back my control of myself and my fierce belief in who I am and what I do. I have to be vigilant in not allowing anyone to pierce this beautiful soul that I have worked so hard on. We should all be this vigilant once we have done this massive work on ourselves to become the people we are and are meant to be. We should also be less judgemental of those others people’s places and words we hear them say, understanding that not everyone’s skin is a strong as ours or as tenuous as theirs (those having these confounded opinions). If you feel like I may be talking about you, please give your head a shake. Life and events are not always about you and you may want to have a look at the work you need to do on you if this seems to make you feel guilty as charged. Or, if you know someone like this, let them be where they are. You do not have to repeat what they say or otherwise make yourself a part of the discussion. God gave us legs for a reason. When you come up beside or near someone starting this type of conversation, use the legs to walk away. The more people we walk away from, the less the story gets repeated. The less the story gets repeated, the fewer people hurt. The fewer people hurt, the happier people get. Today I can say something good to your face and bring my issue to your face, too. Today that is who I am and what I choose to be.
We have now come to the end of this first piece back in the land of truth only and no dares needed. I feel great to be back and excited about the journeys we are going to take together.
As with the past, if you enjoy the read; please like, share, post and comment if the moment so moves you. Please enjoy the journey you are on today because without doing today, we do not get tomorrow.