Structure and Personal Evolution

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I feel like I am in an ever shifting paradigm.  The sand underneath me is shifting, falling away, leaving me without structure to order my life around.  What once was solid is now barely there as an almost invisible outline of what once was.

The song I learned as a child went, “The wise man built his house upon a rock; The foolish man built his house upon the sand.”  When the rain comes down, the house on the sand washes away and the house on the rock stands still.  I thought I had my house built upon a rock, but the rock seems to have been sand after all.

I am seeing that the sand is the little “t” truths I believed in: people, organizations, beliefs.  Then one day, I learn that what I believed in is not what I thought it was and my house crumbles.  In the new state of freedom from structure, I find myself depressed and dysfunctional.  Eating for comfort and watching TV to distract myself from the confusion and betrayal of what I thought to be truth.

I’m not happy in that state, however.  I like to be happy so I expand my awareness to find something to give me structure.  I think of how I learned to keep my balance when walking blindfolded across the log over the water at Trackeschool.  I reached out with my awareness to “imagine” feeling the landscape around me since I couldn’t see with my physical eyes.  That worked on the log, maybe that technique will work for me now.

As I expand my awareness, I pray to know how to overcome my depression.  I pray to understand, and to know how to deal with this unsettling change.  As I was pray, I see in my minds eye the art I made depicting my relationship with one of my sisters.  That piece of art is a series of lines coming together and swirling around each other in great excitement and joy.  Seeing that image delights me.  My mind begins to wander to other art I have been wanting to create.  I feel more joy.

I remember doing an exercise at Tom Brown Jr.’s Trackeschool where we were asking The Creator what our personal vision in life was.  The first answer I received was, “Don’t forget about your art.”  The answer surprised and puzzled me because I thought my personal vision had more to do with learning to survive in the wilderness.   I revisited the importance of art for me.

I find it fascinating how much I depend on structure in my life.  Structure feels like the house I live in.  Or perhaps the house is an interface to my journey in the physical; a way to move through this physical experience with a measure of safety, like a hermit crab carrying around a little shell .  Then the house crumbles, the shell is outgrown, and a new structure is discovered through desperate reaching.  I wonder if one day I will no longer fall into dysfunction and I will exist in joy without the imagined structure . . .

How This Illness Served Me

I scheduled an appointment with a therapist about a week ago (if I am suffering from conversion disorder, therapy is key in recovery) and one of the things she said to me before we got off the phone was, “I also do medical hypnotism which I think could help you get better.”  My first reaction was panic and the thought ran through my head, ‘I don’t want to get better!’

That deserved some exploring.  I began by asking myself why I didn’t want to get better.  In surrendering deeply to the question and feeling what my core feelings were, I realized that I believed if I got better I would have to do things I don’t want to do . . . like living in Florida again, going to work outside my home away from my children, spending my time fulfilling other people’s expectations of me instead of doing what brings me joy.  Those answers were very revealing.

In knowing what was causing me to be afraid of getting well, I also realized that those fears no longer had any foundation.  Maybe I needed an excuse in the beginning to move to Oregon, stay home and rest, and do the things that bring me joy, but not any more.  I can continue living in a way that brings me joy and not worry about what other people expect, or think, of me.