The world breaks everyone and afterward many are strong at the broken places.Author and explorer Ernest Hemingway
“I feel like a fraud just waiting for someone to find me out.”
“That explains a lot … let’s go get some wine and shop local!”
I open up my soul and am asked to buy alcohol at the little specialty shop near work. That’s … uh … a let down to say the least.
Stay-at-home orders suck. You can’t distract yourself the way you used to — you know hanging out with people, going to places to explore, eating at restaurants, etc.
You get to sit with your emotions and the lies you tell myself .. I mean … yourself.
I picked up Dave Hollis’ “Get Out of Your Own Way“ through the Apple bookstore a few days after it came out. But I sat on it until the stay-at-home order. I kinda forgot I had it, until I finished some library books and saw Dave in my Facebook and Instagram feed a few too many times.
Like his wife Rachel’s books, he writes some pretty powerful stuff.
And I laid in my bed awake at 3 a.m. this morning, I was struck by how the stay-at-home order was messing with me mentally.
I’ve never been a confident person and have spent years working on improving this aspect of my life — my mental fortitude. With the order and things going on at work since COVID-19 fears started in North Carolina, I’ve been a hot mess of confident one day and crying the next.
During this insomnia session, I realized that I wasn’t making myself a priority. I was doing all the things when I have others capable of taking in the load. My daughter proved that to me earlier this week. My sons proved that as well in their own way. They aren’t exactly babies or tiny kids anymore. The youngest will be 10 later this year!!
This lie — asking for help is a sign of weakness — was blown apart this week. But then, I had that effort to ask for help turn into someone basically blowing me off and saying “alcohol will fix it.”
It hasn’t and it won’t. I tried too many times. My quest for sobriety failed again. This stay-at-home order is hard to take with three kids who would rather act like asking them to do something is a death sentence.
But they have also expressed kindness and other things I forgot they possessed. Alcohol makes you forget the bad stuff, but also the wonderful moments.
The other lie that was blow out of the water this week — I am unworthy of love and kindness.
As a kid who was bullied a lot, like A LOT, much of that lie is based in the fact that Paine and humiliation is often prefaced with kind gestures and platitudes. I was “killed” with kindness more times that I’d like to admit.
I also had some flack behind closed doors from religious people, not directly though. My parents had to fix a mistake, which they fixed by getting married. As a kid, hearing and knowing this, made me feel unworthy. I still carry that lie with me.
I think it’s the biggest lie that I carry that shaped my perception of myself. And while I knew it existed in the past and used that knowledge to progress, I regressed during the stay-at-home order.
I decided today — this morning during a bout of insomnia — not to give it any more power.
Focus on the inside and physical stuff and the rest will fall into place.
That’s where I am now. That’s where I’m headed.
Like Ernest said, the world breaks people. And some — hopefully including myself — will emerge stronger because of it.