Writing this week’s blog post was torture! I finally relented and am writing what’s REALLY on my mind. My intended topic was the five most useful internet tools, but this persistent wireframe image wouldn’t go away – so here it is.
We’re born like a wire form that acquires all kinds of identities attached to it so that by adulthood we resemble respectable and conventional humans. Most of these pieces are expectations slapped on by the adults charged with our care.
So we exist while clunking about inside this form created for us…
…until a crisis happens. The kind where we ask ourselves how the hell did I end up here?
It might be a divorce, job loss, new marriage, death, a move, financial meltdown, natural disaster. Or even a series of small, accumulating events. Whatever – it makes your form not fit you anymore. Wrong size, style, color, material.
I arrived at this very point at age 54. My dad passed away. I’m like him in all the ways that matter. The things I like most about myself are the things I always appreciated about him until dementia robbed him. Losing him for those reasons were hard, but that was not what made me question my “wireframe identity.”
My mom had passed away fourteen years earlier. So both my parents were now gone, leaving my dad and my son as my only family. My son was growing into his own adult life, as he should, and off on his own for the most part. Being single without siblings or any extended family nearby made me embrace being truly alone.
And I do mean…alone. Lucky for me, I’m an introvert, so that suits me just fine.
Solitude sure does provide fertile ground for introspection.
Know what I realized? Every single person who had ever slapped expectations onto my wireframe was gone!
So who was I living for? Talk about an epiphany!
A years-long and ongoing messy journey of discovering all sorts of things life has to offer that I felt unable to previously.
When You Outgrow It
What does your wireframe wear? What beliefs about yourself no longer serve you? The answer is in your longings. What do you want to do/be/have but believe are not allowed? Do you crave a profoundly personal and sexual connection with somebody, anybody, but the thought of that is too scary? Is there a vocation or work you’re intensely called to that intellectually appears impractical? Do you tell yourself “if only…” several times a day, trying to silence that inconvenient voice?
I hope the rest of my story will help you, too.
Choose What You Want To Wear
Following my dad’s death, I realized that every single person who had defined me was no longer in my life, I realized what a rare but intimidating opportunity presented itself. It’s an ongoing process that reminds me of when I was little, and our gang of neighborhood girls used to play dress-up. We were queens and princesses, actresses, fancy mothers wearing pearls; dragging and scraping our humongous high heels.
Clothing defines us in a strangely compelling way. No one’s around to tell me I can’t wear leather jeans or a corset or dye my hair blue, pink, or purple. Or “dress my age.” Or dress in Steampunk or as a punk rocker, or any variety of punk for that matter. And I have, and do! No one can say my choice of vocation – providing internet marketing for the creative/spiritual community – is a dumb idea. Anyone tells me it is; I merely remind them to be glad they’re not me! It’s always challenging in a fun way, to be so radically different from the expectations of those who know you.
Living your life on purpose and in service to a broader mission, being true to yourself offers unrestricted joy and freedom, but needs a ton of courage to shed your comfortable role and put a new covering on.
But that’s my story, and can be yours, too.
Lean on it and learn from it 😀 Till next time,