Somehow, I just managed to delete the entire thing I just wrote by moving the book I was quoting out of my writing space. I’m totally unsure as to how I did it, but yeah, I’m not doing that again…so let me summarize what I wrote.
We are losing life. Not like, losing it in the sense that it’s winning vs losing, but we’re losing time. So perhaps we are losing a battle? We’re losing the chance to live life and experience it as it comes to us. As we spend more time on our devices, playing too many video games, watching too many movies…we’re finding different ways that “kill” time. Through killing time, we’re losing out on the chance to be experience the thoughts it gives us, the textures, the flavors, to follow threads of thoughts or feelings without knowing where they lead. The ability to ride the wavelength that is life.
Let’s be clear – it’s EASY to get lost in it too. Phones are the portal to getting everything done and nothing done all at the same time. You can pick up that device and conquer the world or find yourself staring at wondering why the hell you picked it up in the first place.
We’re all, for the most part, dealing with some sort of trauma for our past. There’s some reason why we don’t enjoy living in the present moment as much anymore. My reason is different than yours and yours is different than someone else’s. There’s no need to compare. But we’re going to find ourselves at different times shying away from actually living in the moment.
Some people are excellent at realizing what they’re doing and pull themselves back to the moment. I’ve worked hard at this skill. I’m certainly no master at it, but there are days that I’ve fully experienced as I was able to stay present. The trauma can pull us into some thoughts we don’t want to be a part of and when that happens, it’s going to steal life from us like leeches sucking little bits of blood at a time. It keeps us locked up in the past. How can you live in the present when all you can think about is the past? What happens when life happens and you react to it poorly because it’s all you know? Must be difficult to enjoy one moment when you’re lost thinking about another.
“Trauma constrains our inborn capacities and generates an enduring distortion of our view of the world and other people. Trauma, until we work it though, keeps us stuck in the past, robbing us of the present moment’s riches, limiting who we can be. By impelling us to suppress and unwanted parts of the psyche, it fragments the self. Until seen and acknowledged, it is also a barrier to growth. In many cases, as in mine, it blights a person’s sense of worth, poisons relationships, and undermines appreciation for life itself. ” – Gabor Mate, The Myth of Normal
What a thought. We can’t be present, fully present, unless we work through our bullshit first. Our mind fragments itself to protect itself…and if not addressed, we don’t grow. Life is all about growth. No one wants to stay stuck in 3rd grade. I’m sure there’s one kid, but he must have gotten bored of it by the 3rd time through. There’s only so much Hot Cross Buns you can play before you want the next song. Through the tough times, working through our shit, we can find life’s beauty on the other side of it.
I can attest to a lot of this. Not the Hot Cross Buns thing, but everything else. Blighting of a person’s sense of worth? Check. Poisoning relationships? Check. Undermining appreciation for life itself? CHECK. Now, I’ve worked through a lot of issues that were coming to a head recently and I have to say… starting to grow feels pretty fucking cool. It wasn’t easy, in fact, it was a pretty rough experience overall… but being on the other side of things feels really nice. There’s still bumps and innate reactions you want to be the default action, but you have to remind yourself of how much more you want the growth. The wound of the trauma feels better when it’s closed up and healing, rather than peeling the scab repeatedly.
That’s the thing, I’m realizing – the situations that you work through don’t go away. You’ll actually start to encounter them more frequently because you don’t walk through them blindly. You’re aware and self-aware.. What you’ll now have is more like a blueprint on how to handle what your reaction will be and how to work through it. It still won’t be easy as you’ve only done it a couple times, but it will get easiER.
Do you REALLY want to feel worthless? Do you really want to see all of your relationships go down the shitter? Do you really not appreciate life? Of course not. YOU don’t. The trauma is what’s really just fucking you up. Separate yourself from it. That’s not you.
Now, you don’t have to have something severe happen to you when you’re younger to feel it, but we all have our baggage. It can constrict you, diminish your trust, your capacity to FEEL. It can force you to hold onto your pain and fear, forcing you to escape into work or whatever you use to compulsively medicate yourself with. Stop peeling the scab. It’s okay to put the Band-Aid on it with some Neosporin. Maybe have Mom kiss the booboo better? It’s probably what a lot of us need, actually. But it is OKAY to take care of yourself so that you can heal. When you’re healing, you’re better for everyone around you. A rising tide lifts all ships.
I’m only in the beginning stages of working through, what I’ve found, to be some difficult wounds of my past. I’ve discussed them thoroughly with loved ones and I’m continuing to work on myself. Each day is a challenge, some much easier than others. But the past few nights that I’ve gotten into bed, my time between the head hitting the pillow and entering dreamland is shortening. I don’t know what this means, but I’m happy as a clam to be getting better sleep and getting to that point quicker. A clean conscience? A more emotionally sound Kris? No clue, boys and girls…but sleepless nights only make everything worse. Knowing this, I have to assume that I’m on the right path…for now.