reserv·ātiō /29 - 2/2
PART TWO of TWO
You can find the previous post HERE.
[last paragraph from the previous post]
My coffee place is a blend and if I cannot offer the blend, it’s not me. But then: what's with all those negative thoughts? My automatic delayed reaction was then imagining all those things that could go wrong. IT IS A FUCKING DREAM! This was just a visualisation: why can't I just envision beautiful things? In my negative thinking, the issue is not me, my coffee or my place and space. Albeit within my visualisation exercise, it’s the others on the outside, the ones outside of my tribe, those homeless, addicted, drug dealers who might even sneak inside… and it feels they are doing it almost on purpose because they were not there before.
Now I have opened this amazing place and it is pullulated and swarm outside. People almost like zombies. They seem to intrude on my focus and on anything I am doing. It’s not personal, directed to me. They don’t care if it's me or not. They are hungry, cold, dirty, and thirsty. They are craving and reaching out. They want "a piece of me" while inside it is warm, nice and cosy. But... they don’t obey the rules "of the inside". They want to change it because in their eyes I should adapt! I should morph my whole coffee place for them. Gosh, I can feel so much anger now! If only they... studied and applied themselves like I did, we wouldn’t get to this point! I do not want to fucking adapt! This is my place! So, I might decide to not even open the coffee place in the end if this is what is going to happen. [... I’m not going to change home and move if I find the same shit in another place… I am not going to leave my abusive partner because the next one is going to be the same... I am not going to change my poorly-paid job because even the next one is going to be this bad... do you get where I am going with this?!] ... and it doesn’t matter how much I look for the "perfect place", someone external is going to come and ruin it for me. Better the shit I know than to risk by changing and ending up in the same situation.
Do I give up? Is this who I really am?
I don’t think I got back enough compared to what I put in. Hold on a sec, is this the righteous entitled bitch showing up again? There is this part of me that when I look at things CONSCIOUSLY and in AWARENESS doesn’t see things this bad, actually. My unconscious seems to be negative and hurt. Very hurt: expecting and waiting while being negative and not trusting that things will go well [not as much as people, but THINGS will not go well because when I think about singular people it feels ok, but not when it’s things, situation, opportunities that could go wrong]. Then, consciously and in awareness I do realise how much good I got and how I am constantly reminded that things are coming my way and the way I want it. There is this reminder that if I put in hours, effort, dedication and attention in "helping myself" and meeting the Universe halfway, good things come back to me. I know I am resilient and constant. But also scared and impatient: this negative outlook on life is seeping through and I think that underlies and contaminates everything. There is always a little voice that tells me that things are not going to happen as I want. Always that "yes, but...".
Can you see how, no matter how much you think you have highlighted something vital in therapeutic / self-reflecting analysis and that it's done and dusted, once you start uncovering something, it feels like you are pulling out not just a single root but a whole rhizomatic system? Ah, those traumas that keep on giving!
How can I kill that voice? It feels like my dad's, actually… "Have you seen all options, have you checked everything before you make a decision? Have you read everything before making up your mind? Things are never as they seem…" There was always another voice to hear, another book to read, another theory to expound before taking the first step. He was just so negative, castrating and limiting. He taught me this kind of excruciating logical minute appraisal of everything and the need to look out for all those bad things which are around the corner, instead of being hopeful and trusting of the World. It was "praying because things are going to go bad" instead of praying because you believe — a form of pre-emptive approach to spirituality.
Even the songs he listened to were so dramatic, about long lost places you can’t get back to, the bitter land you leave behind, love stories that end tragically, partners dying crossing the road while coming towards you, empty cities on stifling hot summers, last looks before disappearing; emotional self-flagellation and martyrdom. You know the jist, we all watched "An Affair to Remember", didn't we? All so melodramatic and theatrical, full of doom and gloom, betrayals and existential dread. Gosh, I need to PURGE all this negativity! I somatise this in my stomach: I feel this sense of heaviness, the air being sucked out of me, nausea. Like if someone placed concrete blocks on my cardia.
Instead, I want to remember that I got a scholarship, read books, wrote books, walked out in the fresh air, won awards, made love, travelled, changed country, studied... That negativity is my dad's! It's not mine. It doesn't belong to me and I don't want it around me. There was a chapter in The Artist Way that talked about this negativity... was it chapter 5?!
Now, don't get me wrong: I’m sorry for my father’s suffering and for his upbringing. I’m sorry for the pain he must have felt and that he carried with him. I am sorry for people who suffered, and the ones who suffer now; but it wasn’t me and it is not me now. Even during the earthquake: I was only 8, it wasn't me digging out bodies, it wasn’t me experiencing first hand. It was my dad and I do not want to have to suffer any more for something that does not belong to me. He used to come home and vent out to me all his sadness, every time. I was the only one there and he used to define me as the perfect shoulder to cry on. I was only 8. I was supposed to be sheltered and made to play with dolls, sing happy songs and have dreams of a brighter future!
Now, I spend my days reading and writing. Then, a walk in the park among my trees. I am living the life I always wanted to live. I am happy. Those negative intrusive thoughts, those reminders that things go pear-shaped if you let them, to get ready for spells of bad luck, to switch to survival mode; those reminders that sadness and desperation are out there and are coming to get you... don't belong to me. I want to live a life that is balanced between being hopeful, trustworthy and open to beautiful things, and living by applying the correct amount of logic and reason. I am aware that taking feelings and reactions as facts, as if this negativity were the only reflection of reality, is a form of cognitive distortion.
I am glad of the father I had. In the end, what about taking his negativity with a pinch of salt and making it work for me? What about learning compassion for those zombies out there? What about knowing that I can close my coffee place for a week-holiday? What about asking for help from the cops at the NYPD 12th precinct to manage the zombies? I am also considering having a look at these existential post-apocalyptic thoughts. But not now.
Now, I am having a coffee. What about you?
so, onwards + upwards > out + about
* you might want to have a look at
JS Bolen's Artemis. The Indomitable Spirit in Everywoman and
C Pinkola Estés' Women Who Run with the Wolves and
Julia Cameron's The Artist Way and
anything from Carl Jung!
Date : 10 NOV 2023
Duration : ----
Location : home
Weather : too cold to go out
T : cold & sunny
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