Sunday, March 11, 2007
fear and dogshit
I think I've emerged from a rather brutal intersection, somewhat reminiscent of Winnipeg's Confusion Corner. Just too many unpleasantries coming at me all at once from every direction. Today I remembered that wonderful trick for getting stuff out of my system, which only works in winter...... Digging. Or at least, shoveling, ice chipping, whatever. Follow it up with a workout, and then let yourself down with a little meditative breathing.
It would be too easy for someone like me to slip into depression. It's easy because I'm alone in this house, and 6 days of the week I don't see any people, and sometimes not on the 7th day either.... that is, people I like, and trust, and feel safe with. 6 days is plenty of time to let a bad mood disintegrate into a downright pissy frame of mind, and my dogs don't say to me "get the fuck up and do something, you lazy baby." They're happy if we go to the park.
I've been hammering away at fear. The fear of remaining alone until I'm the laughable crazy dog lady with the white flyaway hair whose house smells like dogshit. The fear of failing at everything I try. The fear of living a mediocre existence.
It's funny that I never feel afraid, though I can name fears that affect every area of my life. I guess fear is sneaky that way, it communicates itself as tension, irritation, anxiety, but never fear. Most days, all I know is that certain things make me unhappy. Does my birthday make me unhappy because there's something inherently bad about it, or is it because deep down I'm terrified that one day I'll wake up and find that I'm an old invalid who's done nothing with her life? I think it's an important distinction.
As I work through "the spiritual practices of the ninja" the main point is about fear. Fear as a counselor, but not a controller. Learning to isolate fears and then confront them. It's been a long time since I've given much thought to fear, what my fears are and how they affect me, even though they've clearly been informing my moods. I'm really glad that it's all unfolding, but it's been work, and the hardest work is forcing myself to be present and vulnerable and aware. I've been fighting the impulse to escape into fantasy, most days losing the fight. This is a main reason I haven't had anything to write here..... I haven't been present, I haven't been thinking. I've been escaping, avoiding the work that I know I need to do, the work that is so much harder than housework or yardwork or even work-work.
I think it's getting better. I hope a day will come when I can honestly say that I don't allow legitimate fears to control my decisions.
The funny thing is that I left the house midway through this post, and when I came home, my house actually smelled like dogshit. Apparently Puja wasn't feeling well. I've got candles and febreeze and the air purifier all going strong, yet all I can smell is dogshit. As though my fears were busy manifesting while I was out having fun. Strange.