Thanks – 19 of 21

  1. The seasonal guilty pleasure of Sprite Cranberry Zero
  2. Wednesday night dinner out with my guys
  3. Sleep, blessed sleep

Soundtrack of My Week

Halestorm - The Strange Case Of...

Halestorm – The Strange Case Of…


I Miss The Misery


You Call Me a Bitch Like It’s a Bad Thing


Daughters of Darkness

Religion, Food, and Freedom

I’ve been going through a time of letting go. Some pretty hefty dropping of the baggage. My friend Beth refers to it as a “wiping of the chalkboard”.

My thoughts aren’t clear, but some correlations are appearing. If I wait until I have exactly what I want to say, I’ll probably be on my deathbed, so…bear with me as I start to make some sketches.

I’ve completely let go of religion. I don’t consider myself affiliated with any religious institution whatsoever. A few weeks or so ago, I would have said I’ve let go of Christianity and even of a belief in God. That may be the case, but I think it would be more accurate to say I’m solidly in the “I don’t know” camp regarding God’s existence.

The joy of being me is that I can change my mind at ANY TIME I SO CHOOSE. I have been so afraid of speaking my mind on these things, for fear of others’ opinions and views of who I am, and what my changing thoughts are, that it was affecting my exploration of my own heart and mind. Not good.

So for now, I’m going to share my thoughts without regard to you, the reader. [If you are worried for my soul, please don’t be. If you are ok with hearing me tell the truth, feel free to ask questions – just don’t feel the need to try to persuade me from my current path. You aren’t me. And I’ve decided to stop “looking for myself outside of myself” 🙂 . That’s not to say I’m not interested in hearing about you, and what you believe, and why — but I’m just not open to being “schooled” or “witnessed to” or “saved” from anything.]

Moving on.

Food. What a long and sordid history I have had with eating, and food, and dieting. It actually parallels my struggles with belief, and spirituality, and religion. In a lot of pretty intense ways.

I am currently reading (and listening to) Intuitive Eating by Evelyn Tribole and Elyse Resch.

What I’m coming to see / feel / understand is that I have had an inherent distrust of everything I do. Somewhere along the way, I picked up this idea that if it comes from me (a thought, a desire, an instinct) that it’s likely wrong, or selfish, or sinful. Time to shed that too.

I am seeing correlations between a legalistic mindset in religion and pretty much all diets. And to add insult to injury, I managed to be very visibly, but painfully temporarily, successful using a religious diet plan that REALLY screwed me up regarding God and food and me. It had just enough of a nugget of truth to resonate with me, but then such an insidious message of our worthlessness that I ate myself right into hell.

What I am feeling most right now is relief. A sense of freedom. Hope. Hope that I can stop this conflict between me and myself. Hope that I can build some trust. Trust in my ability to listen to my heart, listen to my body, listen to my mind and make good choices based on what I hear. Sounds simple doesn’t it? I think it is. It’s time to disregard the fear and say “HUSH” to the critical voices that used to drive me to perfectionism. To let go, and listen, and trust.

i-trust-myself-i-trust-the-universe-fireman-bell-crop

Reclaiming My Thought Space

Breathing Room

Going forward, I’m changing my format. I’ve turned off comments for my posts. I won’t be auto-publishing to Social Media.

I’ve stripped my Twitter feed to a more manageable volume. I’m starting to “unfollow” (but not “unfriend”) voices on FB. There’s a lot of transition going on in my innerspace and I’ve wanted a place to practice using my voice. If I can’t do it on my own damned blog, where can I?

I’m not looking for feedback or validation at this point. I’m seeking my own approval. If you’re here, and you’re reading, and you want to talk about any of the things I may share over then next few weeks and months, you are welcome to engage me elsewhere. For now, this space is just for me.

Thanks for understanding!

Namaste.

The Beauty of Being Me

There was an episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation that I have always loved, “The Perfect Mate”.

The Enterprise is unwittingly used to present a unique gift to an alien race: a beautiful empath whose sole purpose is to please her mate. Problems arise when coming out of stasis early in the voyage she imprints herself in many ways on [Captain Picard].
– Written by Moviedude1 on IMDB.com

ST-TNG_The_Perfect_MateKamala to Picard:
“I will never truly love him.”
“You’ve not even met him.”
“It no longer matters. I wish I could convey to you what it’s like to be a metamorph; to feel the inner strength of someone; to realize that being with him is opening your mind and heart to endless new possibilities; to hear yourself say “I like myself when I’m with him”.”
“Kamala..”
“For a metamorph, there’s no greater pleasure, and no greater wish, than to bond with that kind of mate at the end of the finis’raal as I have bonded with you.”
“With me?”
“Who I am today, I will be forever.”
– (Memory Alpha Wiki)

At the end of the episode, though she had bonded with Picard and had an opened mind and heart, she went on to marry the person she was originally intended for, in order to keep peace between the worlds. She had been set free to choose her own path.

This year, this season, whatever you want to call it (since I’m not thinking of this in terms of resolutions, but as in eras in my life), I’m entering an era of discovering what I want, what I like, who I am. I am going against all my anti-selfishness resistance that comes with traditional and/or distorted Christian rhetoric. I’m discarding the idea that anything that examines my own value must be inherently selfish. I think that perspective has been damaging me. All of my strengths, all of my value, all of my uniqueness…all of it has been buried underneath a blanket of “forced selflessness”, which after a while ended in feelings of worthlessness and resentment. How is it that worthlessness became a desirable goal, a virtue?

I have reached a point in my life where I no longer want to look to others for my identity. I do have a few close friends (including, thankfully, my husband) who I am able to connect with on a deeper level, that I can exchange ideas with, bounce thoughts around and off of, but no longer do I want to extract my identity as a copy of theirs.

Just as different body types cannot wear the exact same clothes successfully, neither can different people with their unique spirits, minds, and hearts travel exactly the same journey successfully. Being different, even opposite, does not mean one invalidates the other. In an age where we’re inundated with sound bites of polarizing and “other”-ising information, it can be hard to recognize the absolute beauty in all of the different-ness out there.

There’s something that my best friend used to say all the time, with great joy — that Jesus was bringing “freedom for freedom’s sake”. I’m honestly not sure where that saying came from, and for the longest time just saw it as something she said that brought her happiness. I sensed it was much more deeply significant in her path than it was in mine, but it sounded nice.

Lately, though, I think I’m starting to get a feel for just how awesome freedom can be.

I can be free to be me.

Free_to_Be..._You_and_Me_(album_cover)[Oh goodness! Here’s another long-ago memory being unearthed!

“Free to Be You and Me” with Marlo Thomas was a staple in our household. Memorable stories like Princess Atalantis, and Ladies First! (And so she was…and mighty tasty too!) You can’t beat that stuff!

Ok, ok. So, back to my post]

I’m ready to dedicate some time to exploration and familiarization with my brain, my heart, my soul, my thoughts, my desires and allowing my motivations to be my own. On one hand, it sounds all me-me-me selfish, but now I see that there is this “other hand” that I’m opting to explore. It’s my responsibility to be uniquely me. Whether I subscribe to divine design or not, the truth is, no one else can be me the way I can. It’s time for me to figure out what works for me, and start to discard the things that don’t.

My uniqueness, my custom identity, it deserves to be explored and not shoved through a mold that doesn’t fit in order to attain…what? Conformity? Lifeless existence? Standardization?

Meh.

Me. This year I’m dedicating to sitting back and taking a look at what makes me, me.

This is me.

This is me.

You know, I always wondered what happened to Kamala after she left the Enterprise and went on with her own life. That’s kind of what I feel like right now. I’m excited to see where it goes!