Have you ever found yourself spending so much time and energy focused on how other people feel, checking in on them, never realizing that you’ve forgotten to figure out how YOU feel, forgotten to check in with you? It’s so easy to get caught up in being who others want you to be, and you eventually find yourself confused about who you really are. It’s happened to me, and frequently happens to me. I’ve gone through so many changes in my life lately, and it has me feeling like some sort of drifter, hovering on the outskirts of life. I found myself losing sight of what makes me unique, what makes me special to those who love me. Inauthenticity, even if unintentional, can literally un-ground you and make you question everything. You’re spinning in no particular direction, with no buffer or barrier to stop you from doing so.
In the shower the other day (my best thoughts happen in the shower), I tried to think of the last time I sat and actually spent some time with myself, meditating or just figuring life out. Not surprisingly, I couldn’t come up with anything. When you take time for yourself, you give yourself the space to explore what it means to be you. Conversely, when you fail to do that, you fail to be creative, to be innovative, to exemplify what sets you apart from any other mindless drone. As a result, you start searching for meaning and purpose in things that shouldn’t be remotely important to you. You begin to be formless and spineless, living vicariously through someone else’s personality, their existence.
So the purpose of today’s post? I suppose there’s no real, clear purpose, aside from me utilizing this medium to express myself (and do all the stuff I just said I don’t have time to do). And I guess, it’s also to give you a nudge and inspire you to do the same. Stop living other people’s dreams, skulking in their shadows, and stop stop stop emulating their lives. If they aren’t happy with you once you actually begin to be yourself, then you’ve succeeded in eliminating any barriers that will hold you back from being who you truly are. Because honestly (in the words of the great philosopher, Jayz), they can “…either love [you], or leave [you] alone. Be you. Be real. Be alive.
I so enjoy your thoughts. It gives me an insight to you that you don’t normally show. I find you to be such a deep thinker! You are correct in saying that you spend so much time concentrating on others that you forget who you yourself are. I have spent so many years involved and revolving around my children and family that now that all of you guys are grown and moved out, I have forgotten how to be me. I have no interests, no friends, and nowhere to evolve from here. My life has been you guys and now I find myself in limbo with no direction. I guess they call it “empty nest syndrome”. I really know what they mean by that now and I really feel it. I work so much that I have forgotten how to play. Don’t ever let that happen to you! Love you, Mom
Thanks Mommy! But this goes to show that it’s never too late to be your true self. You are still young, still agile, and still able to re-create your life. Now’s the time to go find some interests! You enjoy art; visit a museum (which I know you haven’t done in ages) and get inspired. I asked people this question the other day: What would you do if you weren’t afraid? Take some time for yourself to figure out what you would do. There’s an eight-year-old Judy in there who used to dream…figure out where she is and let her guide you. Love you too!
You are so right! I will be buying a sketch pad pretty soon so I can start drawing again. And, I want to learn how to develop my own pictures. I’m trying to find a photography class somewhere! Any suggestions?