I spend a lot of time in my head.
I’m going to guess that I’m not alone in this, especially given that there are a bunch of readers here that are likely creatives, talented-but-slightly-tortured-artists who are amazing but just haven’t quite grasped how to—well, grasp that fact.
So I was thinking the other day (thinking? me?) because I was at home alone, with time to do so many things, like think. And I fell into scenario-building mode without knowing it, starting to tell myself this huge ‘story.’ It was a conversation that thought I’d have to have with a certain someone.
The idea sprung out of nowhere. There was no factual basis, other than my own fears, and the newness of it all.
It came rushing into my head and I didn’t have a moment to stop it or even change it around. It just came in and kept on coming, me justifying myself ‘to’ the person. Justifying why I’m good enough.
I didn’t even realize how in depth this script was until that my imaginary voice blurted the following out in a kind of soft-yet-dramatic movie-voice:
Sometimes when someone says this in a movie, there is a hint of the character’s disingenuity or insecurity. The whole thing is scripted in such a way to give the audience the clue that the person can’t be trusted.
Why would someone say that unless they truly believed they had someone to convince?
Then it hit me in a lightning-bolt flash realization: where the hell was this internal dialogue coming from anyhow? Who was I really trying to convince?
There is no basis in reality for someone not trusting me.
Except, apparently, me.
I’ve built a life and held a community where trust is assumed both ways. It doesn’t really need to be said. In my world, with my friends and community—trust is implicit.
In this internal dialogue, I was the enemy.
The message was really from me to me. I was carrying forward messages of support from others in this in-betweeny, uncertain time, but I didn’t completely process the message yet, so I was still telling myself.
Then came a vision of the simplest action: stepping up to the mirror and looking myself straight in the eye and saying it, in that soft-melodramatic movie star kind of way. The thought made me laugh at myself a little bit; I mean of all the people that I’d have to say this to!
We talk about loving ourselves all the time, about having faith that things will ‘work out.’ We like to talk about trusting the ‘universe’ and the people around us (or not).
Kind of funny, isn’t it? That it’s so hard to trust ourselves sometimes? To believe in ourselves?
We can look in the mirror and ‘love’ what we see (or not), but what about knowing that we are perfectly capable of handling our shit…or whatever life throws at us, even when and if it’s not actually ‘our’ shit?
Isn’t deeply trusting someone a precursor of real love and compassion?
We spend so much time and energy searching for bonds, connections based on trust between ourselves and others.
But at the end of the day, can we look ourselves in the eyes and say ‘trust me’ with complete sincerity?
Some days are better than others, but I’m (we’re) working on it.
Love elephant and want to go steady?
Editor: Bryonie Wise
Photo: Colby Stopa at Flickr