After many years of resisting my draw and connection to the written word (aka writer’s block and a dash of trauma), today I started writing. I have no idea where this will lead, but it feels right right now, so I’m going with it. If you take the time to read, thanks for showing up to the conversation! I appreciate your time.
Vulnerability! A struggle for all. And if not, please, teach us.
Like a lot of people, I am resistant of my own vulnerability. Knowing that, I am trying to be more actively vulnerable with my thoughts and feelings to keep working on becoming a better version of myself. You may have guessed it, but for me that means writing and sharing it with others. Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!
But hey, no time like the present! So here it goes… [insert mental image of person jumping off cliff to unknown depths below]
I have ADHD, which means that I am neurodivergent. Which kind of sounds like a superpower (and feels like one sometimes, too). I am also an empath, but I have learnt that high sensitivity is also a symptom of ADHD. All of the above, check! I also identify as female and was born with female sex organs. When I was younger, I believed vehemently that I was meant to be the Red Power Ranger. Later in life, I thought of myself as a loner wolf, a tomboy, and a nerd. I heard others call me crazy, weird, spacey, lesbo, unstable, selfish, a know-it-all, copier, loser, quiet, stupid, ugly. Other labels/boxes include, but are not limited to: Type A, sensitive, strong, loving, creative, joyful, enthusiastic, an advocate, organized, attentive, time challenged, a cuddle bean, introverted, extroverted, and so on.
The complexities we all hold, while wonderful, also fuel part of a very human struggle between reason and feeling, and choices and actions.
Humans are painted with labels and filled with expectations, and I do understand how we got to this point, historically and evolutionarily speaking. Our brains evolutionary approach to optimizing the retention, recall, and use of information is now at a crux where these processes, if one is not mindful of them, risk overgeneralization and loss of, or inaccurate use of, data. That is to say, there is far more information that we encounter in our daily lives that the brain could retain without having a system to organize it all. Such as grouping similar items. Trees are a great example! Did you know there are over 60,000 known species of trees? Do you know them all? Not me! But I am learning to identify the ones where I live (Oak, Adler, Fir, Spruce, Cedar, Pine, Larch, etc.). Classifying groups and sub-groups makes it possible to store more information, as well as process data more quickly and accurately. This is useful!
So, systems of organization are useful, but can they also be unhelpful? Yes! When these systems become so inflexible and closed that the innate complexity of existence is lost, they can cause harm. When the labels we give ourselves and we hear from others hold us down or restrict us from our potential and wellbeing, that is harmful. It is harmful because life is not black-and-white. And when we loose the complexity, we compromise our capacity for fairness, and consequently justice, within the beauty and hardship that is life on Earth.
In summary: We are all broken and whole at the same time. We are all Darth Vader and Luke Skywalker in one, along with many, many other bits and pieces. And with cool tools, like mindfulness and awareness, all those bits and pieces in one inform our choices. And what power, in each choice! The power to feel the feels and not be a slave to them. To be angry, and still choose compassion. To be hurt and betrayed, and to choose to grow and keep loving. To be wrong and out of line, but to choose to take responsibility and try again.
So while all those labels I threw out at the beginning are truths for me and within me, they do not define me. They sure do come together in a weird and wonderful way, albeit, sometimes messy. But, so it goes! And that’s okay. That’s okay for all of us.
Take care ❤