1-21-14 Last night Kat and I meditated and in my meditation I was asked: "How can you be present with another person, when you don't know how to be present with yourself?" Good question and as I meditated on it, I realize how much just being with myself can be a painful experience. This morning's meditation just seemed to confirm that there is this core part of me that feels such pain and hurt, and emptiness and longing and that just sitting with it, really being present with it is something I've spent my entire life avoiding. I think I can point to any number of whys, which is useful for resolution purposes, but even more than that just sitting with myself, really sitting with myself is something and being present is something I need to learn. I told Kat how I realized that for me, my life has always been about then ext person, project etc., and how that focus has always provided me a way to avoid just being present with myself, just feeling whatever it is I'm feeling.
In a related note, Erik, my astrologer had told me that my birthday, this year, would occur in the exact space that happened when I was initially born. I find this interesting and relevant, even to the work I'm doing now, because I feel that in exploring my earliest experiences in this life I'm actually allowing myself to figuratively explore the beginnings of this life and the experiences I've had. It was around this time of year that I was conceived and so I find it helpful to be exploring these issues now even as this year eventually comes to my birth date and allows me perhaps to experience a re-birth in the same space as will have occurred 38 years ago. I'm going to doing something special this year for that particular birthday, but I will just allow that to come to me as the time continues. For now I just need to focus on this work.
I'm continuing to read Born for Love and they talk quite a bit about the neurochemistry of bonding. I'm familiar with the neurochemistry, but as I read it, I consider my relationship with the particular neurotransmitters and map that relationship to my behaviors and I see patterns in ways I hadn't, which confirms the realizations I'm having right now about the drive and motivation behind many of my choices.
1-26-14 I've always been tightly wound as a person, in some ways. Kat observed that I don't do spontaneity so much as I do scheduled spontaneity and I think that's accurate. I can be spontaneous, but it's all scheduled in my mind. I've always been a person who lives in my head, and allowing myself to really feel, to really be present with what I'm feeling is something that still comes hard to me because of how wound tight I've been. I told Kat that for me being wound tight is a control mechanism, both in terms of not letting people in (or only letting them in so far) but also not letting me out. The problem with this control mechanism is that if you hit it in the right place it comes unwound pretty quick. So allowing myself to feel, to let go of control and be present is really good for me, and I did that today with Kat in a manner that did bring up an awareness of blockages in myself and allowed me to feel them. I still feel uncomfortable with them, but I'm not thinking about them...I'm actually feeling them.
1-28-14 I'm feeling pretty accomplished today. My latest book Manifesting Wealth is now available for sale and as always when I get a book published it feels really good to have it done and know its something else I can take off my project list. I'm looking forward to doing book release parties, something I haven't done in the past, but I'm open to trying. In other news one of my uncles may be dying. Not sure how I feel about it, mainly because I really don't know him. I don't have much contact with the majority of my family. I've always been considered an odd person and a black sheep, so I feel a it weird about it, but more from a sense of obligation than genuine feeling.
1-31-14 As I continue working with movement, what strikes me is how even little movements build momentum. The discrete actions, the choices you make all build momentum toward the movement you are enacting. You live with that movement, become it because of the choices you make and all of it builds up and flows to the outcome that's manifested as a result of building that momentum.
2-1-12 I'm continuing to read Born for Love. They talk about how the first year of a baby's life is the year where the baby is the most impressionable, and also just how selective the baby is about who takes care of it. The baby knows who the mom or dad is, but not really anyone else and isn't necessarily receptive to anyone else. Babies focus on what's familiar and safe and use that to gradually explore the world around them. Now I think about that in relationship to what I know about the first year of my life. I lived with my mom for most of it, but there was a fair amount of moving involved and a lot of stress in the environment. And toward the end of that year, I ended up with my dad and with whoever he was with at the time. There wasn't much in the way of familiarity in those environments and recognizing that and seeing how much that's hardwired into a baby really makes an impression on me about that stage in my life and its effect on my own behavior, my needs and wants. It's amazing to think that a year that you probably don't remember much of has such an effect on your life in a way that moves throughout the rest of your life, but clearly it does.
2-4-14 Further reading of Born to Love has proven quite insightful to understanding some of the neurochemical aspects of love and bonding, as well as what happens when a kid doesn't have those initial bonding experiences. What's really fascinating is that a lot of behaviors even as an adult can be linked back to this early period of your life.
2-5-14 In Born for Love, they describe a person who was raised in an orphanage, who didn't get a lot attention or bonding in her early years. What they describe sounds a lot like me: Physical contact can be anxiety provoking, needs to sleep in absolute darkness, doesn't like bright lights, prefers wearing clothes with soft fabrics, doesn't like to be touched and has had to devise cognitive and intellectual behavior strategies to figure out how to behave in different social situations. Everything described here fits me to a T. Up until relatively recently, I didn't like to cuddle or be held because I found it uncomfortable and felt like the other person was trying to smother me with touch. Even now I find it uncomfortable, but less so, to the point that I can cuddle for a while before I start to get uncomfortable. When I sleep at night I can't touch Kat at all if I want to sleep, though in this last year I've gotten to a point where I can lightly snooze in her arms. And even though I do hug people, it's a learned behavior, like so many of my other behaviors. I find social situations awkward and I've had to really study them to understand how and why to interact a certain way. In reading this book and realizing how much my very early years effected me, it really makes me understand a lot of my choices and interactions with people in a different light. I see how that early period of time, which was so unstable, created an unstable foundation for my life.
2-13-14 I attended a talk last night at one of my networking groups. The presenter discussed problem solving vs solution finding and made a point that what we focus is on is what we create. I've heard it before, but sometimes you need to hear messages like that again and it struck me deeply when I heard it. I asked myself if I was focusing on my problems or my strengths, focusing on fixing something or focusing on discovering possibilities and my answer is that I do a fair amount of both but also that it can get very easy to fixate on what isn't working in your life because the tendency people have is to focus on the problems...what isn't working as opposed to what is working. What isn't working shapes the narrative of our movement because we know what is wrong...but do we know what is right? Do we celebrate our strengths and let those create momentum for us? That's something I've been learning to do more and I see its effect in my business. I feel more confident and sure of myself this year than I ever have because I feel I know my strengths, know what I am capable of and how I can stretch myself further. And you know I realize that exercising has played a role in that discovery of my strengths, because as I become more physically fit and strong, I feel more confident about what I can do in general. Play to your strengths and let them move you.
2-18-14 I've just gotten back from Pantheacon and a lot has happened since I last updated this post. On the drive down, I got into an interesting conversation with Kat, where I told her that I realized I was comfortable and content with her. I don't think I've ever felt content or comfortable with other people before. As we talked, I explained that I realized that my understanding of what love is seems to be maturing. My relationship with her has been the longest stable relationship I've had. While we've had our occasional issues, overall we get along really well. Being in such a relationship is a bit strange for me. I have to admit I feel a bit scared because I'm in uncharted waters in this matter. Everything I've known has been volatile with ups and downs, with the initial chemistry of NRE and then that chemistry fading and not necessarily being replaced with anything. With Kat, it is being replaced with something steadier and more grounded. I like it, but I'm not used to it. There's a steady movement to this relationship, a momentum which grounds me even as it carries me forward. Later we also discussed spontaneity and affection and I explained that for me so much has been planned in my life because of trying to understand people. With her, I can give more of myself than I've ever given anyone else...I can relax and be at peace.
At the convention, I presented two workshops plus the publishing panel. All of them were well attended and people seemed to get a lot from the workshops. I think I would only change the titles of the workshops. What stood out to me about the workshops is how movement manifested during them. Before each workshop began I could feel nervous tension in myself. I'd move around a lot, make occasional funny comments and basically put myself into the space of becoming the presenter. Then I did the stillness chant and everyone joined in and it grounded me and set up the sacred space. Everyone got into it. Everyone felt it. And the workshops then were paced really well. I didn't get scattered (outlines helped) and I kept the workshop moving in the direction I wanted. On the drive home Kat told me that she felt I was really building momentum for myself and Immanion Press. I agree with her. I feel that the momentum is building up and it's something I've not really done in the past. But now that I'm approaching my writing and presenting in terms of building a brand identity I like what I'm seeing. There is movement and direction and I can work with that.