Okay, so this is kind of a long story — another story of why I ended up thinking about something and what I ended up thinking about.
I was intrigued enough about this woman to go google Lissa Rankin. Now it’s possible that this woman is a household name but I don’t get out much, so I had never heard of her. So, I’m clicking around her web site and finding, unsurprisingly, that she is trying to sell me stuff. But then I came to the About|Lissa Rankin page and encountered this:
I believe that the key to living a long, vital life is an optimistic attitude, the willingness to love expansively and receive love in return from a wide circle of people close to you, engaging in work that lights you up, tapping into Source, allowing your creativity to flow boundlessly, being unapologetically who you really are, moving your body in ways that make you smile, and drinking as much green juice as you can.
And, as you can probably guess, this got me to thinking. But besides that, and much to my surprise, it actually made me tear up and that is was really got me to thinking.
I don’t have any problem with Dr. Rankin’s premise there. My own mother died an untimely death at the age of 59 (only 4 years older than I am now!) and I have never made a secret of my belief that it was her own misery and fear and distrust of others and inability to let herself be loved that killed her. The multiple myeloma was only incidental, a symptom of a larger dis-ease that had been taking its toll on her life for decades.
I had recognized this dis-ease a lifetime earlier. My mother had been a miserable person for as long as I could remember. (There was a picture of her from when she was a teenager that retained a place in my memory simply because I had never seen her look that happy in all my little-bitty life.) I didn’t realize it at the time but she was a terribly frightened person for as long as I could remember. I was miserable, too, and she used to tell me that my relationship with her was as good as it was ever going to get for me.
I remember thinking that if I really believed that, I would just kill myself right then and there. That was when I promised myself that I was going to do what I had to do to make myself happy. And that has always been my life’s goal, beyond all the other interim goals I have pursued at different points in time: I want to be happy.
So here I am, beyond the crucible. Am I happy? Almost.
Something is missing. I have no idea what it is and I’m not sure how I’d find it.
I don’t think I’m quite miserable enough to make myself really sick like my mother did. I am certainly much happier than I was when I was married to the sociopath. But I read that quote like a sort of check list of ways in which it is possible to be okay and I recognize that there are ways in which I am still not okay.
This is the part where I remind myself that I spent 27 years, possibly more, before the crucible or within the crucible. I’m less than six months over here on the other side, beyond it. I need to cut myself some slack, give myself some time.
I need to heal. That’s what I tell myself.
The sad fact is that I’m not sure if I know how.