There's just something about watching it snow that allows you to see into your own soul with a clarity and stillness that is unlike any other. As you know, I've been going through The Artist's Way a second time and giving a little update about how it's been going and what issues I've uncovered but mostly I think I've complained about feeling. Feeling lonely. Feeling lost. Feeling dejected. Feeling feeling feeling. I'm typically not one to be all about the feelings nor am I about expressing the feelings to whoever feels like watching and listening to me.
No, the only feeling I've ever been comfortable expressing before is anger. Somewhere through the years, I learned that anger meant power while expressing vulnerability in any way meant weakness. Lets not consider for a moment that anger itself is actually a vulnerability in disguise. It took me many years of reflection in all its forms to learn that basic insight into myself and the common human condition to misunderstand what part anger actually has in our lives.
I love what The Artist's Way says about anger. It says that anger is a guide to tell us where our boundaries lie. It is something to be acknowledged and treated with care and response but not reaction. The difference? A response is calculated whereas a reaction is not. If I find myself feeling angry for whatever reason I am forced to ask why. What has just happened to me to push my boundary whether clearly defined or not? And because anger is actually a secondary emotion, I have to ask myself what fear I'm being faced with. Having that information then allows me to decide the appropriate response to my triggered anger so I don't find myself doing or saying something I don't actually mean (react).
Recently though, it's not anger that I've struggled with. It's the vulnerabilities that contribute to the woman I am. The true person within me and whatever image I portray to those around me. Am I a little wishy washy because I can't seem to settle down on any one hobby? Do I seem a little schizophrenic with my long list of activities? Am I out of balance with overtasking myself then realizing just how many hours there are in the day? Am I really a sensitive whiner on the inside of this hard angry (less so now) shell?
In sitting in my comfy chair with my favorite patchwork quilt made by my mother-in-law, my laptop warming the legs it rests on and watching the snow fall outside it all just seems so clear. Trivial. I've struggled for one full year with feeling not good enough, not worthy enough, not smart enough, not thin enough, not popular enough that right now, right this moment as I reflect back on the past 365 days, tears gather in my eyes and stream down my cheeks. I'm crying not out of pain or anger or fear as I may have in earlier days or weeks or months. I cry for pride. I cry for joy. My tears are singing my own praises and the feeling is almost as magical as the first snow fall of the year because I have finally done the one thing that had me frozen in my fear for the whole of 2010.
I faced my fears and I conquered them. I WIN! And it feels so good I don't know how else to express it other than to just allow the tears to fall in celebration of the woman who is emerging from the dust.
Today, I reflect on my year long journey from personal weakness to personal power by sipping my tea and watching the snow flutter to the ground. Now that's living active.