Man, one of the things that I love about my child is her complete lack of inhibitions and her fearless self expression.
I don’t know if I ever was so exuberant and free like her. She rocks whatever she feels without care or concern to opinion and she rocks it well. She dances deliriously filled with the joy of the sound while completely off beat. She is goofy and silly and not afraid to be. In fact she relishes in silly. And you can’t help but want to be around her because of that carefree bubbly “the party is here” spirit. Her energy is contagious.
And while I recognize that I have always done my own thing in many aspects of my life. I don’t think I ever wore it so easily. For me going against the grain may be natural but honoring myself has never been easy. I struggled and still do with sensitivity and over thinking and caring what others may think about me.
Marry that to all of the responsibilities that come with adulthood and parenting your parent and being treated like an adult way before you are emotionally ready to be one and it becomes a real blast.
This is how my silly and my spunk got lost. OR. Perhaps more accurately, how I tossed it aside.
As a troubled teen, rather than foster those carefree feelings I starved them. I killed them because I wasn’t able to see their value. I wanted to be the tough chic, the too cool stone faced nothing ruffled my feathers, you can’t hurt me because I have no feelings girl. To mold myself into this persona I shoved and stuffed any characteristics that didn’t fit my image way down deep inside of myself and I buried them under anger and hurt and bucking authority. I didn’t laugh at dumb jokes or talk to dumb people. I wore a resting bitch face permanently. I rarely let my guard down. That meant that while I avoided further hurt, or so I thought, I also avoided connection, warmth, spontaneity, levity, being carefree and joyful.
As I matured into my twenties and got married I wanted to be taken seriously. I wanted to be perceived as responsible and having it all together. That guard remained in place. It shifted from Rebel to Matron. All knowing, all seeing, all together, all the fucking time. It was a heavy crown to wear. I was above all those silly little emotions. Life was serious business.
The rare occasion when I felt safe enough to just let loose and really be me in every color I felt a concurrent insecurity. Like walking on thin ice. Is this ok? Can I do this? Convincing myself, I was in fact alright. More than alright. This is fun. See, no one cares. I could handle these emotions. But inevitably they would get buttoned back up. It felt too risky. Door closed. Wall up. Control back in check.
Age and my life experience has taught me quite a bit. More so of recent. Here are some of the tidbits I’ve learned. Learned but struggle with practicing. I am working on them though. What is it they say? Awareness is the first step.
- Control is an illusion or delusion that will mindfuck you at every turn if you let it.
- Truly no one gives a fuck what you are doing. And if by some chance they do it’s for 5 minutes tops.
- Those cliche sayings that hang on the wall of every mid-upper class family’s home and are tattooed on many a white girl: Live, Laugh, Love; Dance Like No One’s Watching; Live in the Moment. That’s truth. I know, as overplayed as “The Electric Slide” at weddings but you still get out there and do it don’t you?! Same idea.
- Life is not meant to be taken so seriously. It is a wonderful adventure every day. Savor the moments. Open your eyes and look around you.
- Even though it may feel otherwise at times, the Universe is not taking a giant shit on my head. Shit happens to everyone, good and bad. That is just life! Stop taking it personally, rally and deal with it.
- Someone else would happily eat my shit sandwich and ask for a second helping.
- Do not take yourself so seriously. I am not doing brain surgery or a heart transplant or navigating a rocket ship. But if I were I would still need humor.
- Being silly is fun! It feels good inside your soul to do life in lightheartedness.
- Knock down the wall. The wall doesn’t really protect you. If anything it prevents you from true connection to others.
- I don’t get a do over in life and may not get a second chance in some instances. I try to live without regrets.
- The best way to honor the loved ones I have lost is to live fully and happily.
Carefree, spontaneous, silly, light, happy-go-lucky. These are some of the characteristics I hope to feel more comfortable embracing and showing. Allowing others to see a side of me that isn’t so serious and sarcastic and thick with responsibility. Shaking off some of the heaviness that has engulfed me over the passed few years. Finding more balance in my expression of who I am growing into.
What are some of your personal growth goals? What parts of yourself would you like to blossom? Comment below.