Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Who Owns Who?

This business of "self-ownership" came up again today. A good point of reference for journaling because it is much more important than it seems on the surface...

OK....where to start? I'll just let my pen make that decision.

We go through life owning all sorts of things. Even as little children we can remember owning our toys, clothes, even people. "My Mommy" comes to mind. Yes, she was MINE and when I held her hand, I remember doing so with pride of ownership. Of course, I knew that my mother had other kids, but in my little egotistical mind that was of no importance. She was mine and mine alone. As a teenager, there was MY boyfriend and MY best girlfriend. Again, pride in ownership, until the day when the boy wandered over to another "property" and my girlfriend made the cheering squad, finding new friends that didn't include me. Those were painful days.

Not learning the lesson, I carried my Ownership Manual into my marriage. My husband also had a manual, so according to the rules, I owned him and he owned me. Even our marriage vows sounded a bit like the manual. In my defense, I never quite cared for the way these vows were written, but in those years no one even thought to write their own version.

Looking back at our history of arguing, it truly all boiled down to the conflicting Ownership Manuals. "Do this because I say so." "You are mine." "Who do you think you are?" "I'm running this ship and I set the rules." "I don't remember giving you permission to buy that." "When are you going to grow up?" Just a few examples.

It's easy to understand how resentment grows when one's personal Manual is simply thrown aside as if it has no value. Then there's that feeling of being held captive, hands tied behind the back.... no escape in sight. Here are the choices...give up, please the other or fight back. It seems to me there needs to be more choices. What am I missing?

The pen scrawls, "You were born alone and you will die alone."


And then, "the space in-between those two Events belongs to you. Spend it as you choose."

Being brought to the realization that no one can own another, I put my Manual away. I could dispose of it, but I want to keep it as a reminder of what is my truth. I am free to live my life as I see fit, with the understanding that I must not harm others, but instead help them to grow and experience their own freedom.

I can't help but ask, "Will this be a hard sell?" After all, I've been married for decades. This new position of mine will not be very welcomed.

"There is nothing to sell. Just position yourself between your birth and death, imaging yourself taking care of yourSelf first, then extending your hand to help others. The rest will take care of itself. Perhaps a few bumps, but before long the road will become smoother. While it's true that you might hit other bumps, just drive your own car, for this is the only car you have. How you care for it will determine it's longevity, both emotionally and physically."

In the middle of writing this, I hit a bump. Needing to say "no" when my partner was definitely looking for a "yes." A few insults cow dung being thrown my way. His childSelf obviously not happy with my response, but it is the best thing for me and I deserve to be respected. Therefore, I deliver the respect to mySelf. This means that I'm not needy, nor will I ever be needy because I provide what I need to mySelf. Of course, it would be wonderful if he would also provide it, but since I don't "need" it, then my resentment is lessened. It's easier to shift over to a feel-good position. In the past, the pothole would have prevailed. Another day spent angry and resentful.

I admit to feeling the compulsion to go back and explain my position, but my Higher Self says "no need." Over-explaining is a co-dependent behavior, meaning that I give the keys of my car to someone else. Not the way to drive forward...

What's Inside? The Big Green Garbage Dumpster

Some days when I sit down with my journal in front of me, I haven't a clue as to what to write. My life seems to be going on an even keel, and part of me prefers not to shake the boat. Obviously there are always going to be things that I'd like to change, but isn't this the way life unfolds? Won't there always be dust in the corners and dirt under the carpet?'

My pen hits the journal "running."

"Is this what you think this journaling project is about? Do you really believe it's about surface dirt??"

Whoops...I guess not.

Getting past the surface crud has always been an issue for me. Yes, it's true. I tend to accept it because sometimes "life just sucks." So, the issue isn't the crud, but what is waiting for me underneath....the gifts of creativity. I know I want them, but getting to them takes a special type of cleaning and clearing.

Long ago, I learned that there is value in garbage. I actually took a course in garbage collecting on the streets of New York. It was given by a "professional" garbage expert who showed us how to shop for garbage and best of all, how to evaluate and then climb into those great big green dumpsters. My heart still beats fast when I pass one of them...wondering what sort of treasures are hidden there. Yes, I want to climb up and in even though it isn't politically correct. I remember my husband telling me NEVER to tell anyone about my "hobby". One evening I found myself at a dinner party sitting next to a professor of pediatrics. When he asked me what I did for fun, I did bite my tongue and gave some easy answer like get the idea. Then, I asked him about his hobbies. "Oh...I collect garbage at the local dump." My childSelf sat up straight..."how do you manage that?" He proudly took out his "dump pass." That part of me was mesmerized and so yes, I shared some of my green dumpster experiences with him. It was a great evening.

I like remembering that story, but for different reasons. Garbage has great metaphorical meaning and there is value in all of it, but it does take courage to climb into the dumpster of the mind, because that's where the garbage is located.

Here are some good ground rules...

Handle garbage with care. While it may be dirty and have nails or other things that can cut you, it also has great value. Sometimes the dirtiest garbage harbors the biggest secrets.

If you respect the garbage, it will respect you. The garbage is not out to get you. As you examine it, feel free to ask "opening questions." A couple of examples, "What can you tell me about yourself?" or... "What lessons can you teach me?" If you are working hypnotically or in automatic journaling, those answers will come quickly into your mind as thoughts or will flow off the end of your pen.

Work with imaginology. Ask the garbage image to open and ask to see the creative insides. You may be surprised at what comes forth for you. You might ask permission to "gift" it with a positive affirmation or a respectful visit, perhaps a healing of forgiveness, compassion or deep understanding for any part you played.

All experiences, garbage included, have a variety of suggestions or plans for making your life better than before. If they are not forthcoming, ask for them. Remember, the mind works backwards and all plans flow from the end to the beginning.

Always remember to show gratitude and never trash will always be rewarded!