I’ve been in a conversation with a therapist I don’t have for most of the day. Scrounging around my insides for what I’d say to this new person upon introducing him or her to my inner world, I’m remembering what it feels like to be therapy-vulnerable with someone. It’s uncomfortable. I end up feeling like a silly little girl. It’s simultaneously the most free I ever feel. I love paying someone to sit and listen to anything I want to say. I learn so much just by listening to myself. The real gift is when someone can hear you out, watch you snot all over yourself and still be like, “There’s nothing wrong with you.” The treasure is when someone can see through your “I Got This” façade and speak to the cornered child who doesn’t got anything.
I really believe this (there’s nothing wrong with you), despite the way the world seems to believe there’s always something to fix. It gives our difference-seeking mind something to do, I guess: to believe we need to be better to get wherever we don’t think we deserve to get.
Last time I sat down with a therapist for the first time, he asked, “How can I help you?” and I thought it was just so honest. Simple. When I put myself back in my body during that conversation, I feel how the deeper questions begging to be asked by all my cells and hairs and hopes were:
Is it okay to be myself?
Am I safe here (in the world)?
Is this enough?
Am I crazy?
These days it’s more like a rambling cocktail of, I have trouble focusing. Adulting is hard for me. I don’t know what I want to be when I grow up. Is it weird that I look around, and don’t see any real problems, so feel constantly weighed down by the feeling that I’m misunderstood? And WTF is up with everyone trying to fix one another? How come I hate folding laundry?
I used to feel clenched by the guilt over just being who I am and needing what I need. I used to believe the world was trying to hurt me. It was like I was yelling at everyone LET ME FEEL THE THINGS, without realizing that no one ever had the power to keep me from feeling, but gosh, you guys: it sure feels like that when we don’t know how to allow someone else to have conflicting feelings about what we feel. Or even complimentary feelings. The stage feels small. Everyone is scary. Everything is huge.
Lately, it’s more like I’m wondering how to match the Morgan I feel like I am inside to the Morgan I sometimes am on the outside. How to not be exhausted by the sheer fact of living. How to meet myself where I wish the world would meet me.
It comes down to a matter of maps. Location, location, location.
I talk about “positioning” a lot. Positioning is the same as belief. It puts us on the map. It’s the red pin that says I’m Here. It is also the implied other red pins we put on the map, saying, “And there you are, homeslice. And no matter how close you get, you aren’t here.” There isn’t anything inherently wrong with positioning ourselves on the map. It helps us navigate. In the material world, boundaries are helpful.
But I’ve been thinking about emotional location. As I perceive it, the material world is the manifestation of all that is, but sliced up into itty bitty pieces of a spectrum that allow us to identify and experience all of it — and ourselves — as individuated from the Whole. It’s the kaleidoscope of the human life. It’s the all-encompassing Everything shivved down into infinite pokey bits that can pierce our sphere of perception and be felt in all their confusing, conflicting precision.
This life is the gift of What Is, held in the womb of the Infinite, which, as I perceive it, is what we call God. God, then, is not a being, but the Ground of Being. All this, all you and me and them and it and everything? God. Made manifest. We will it so. We choose it. We enter into the kaleidoscope with this life and recoil at the harshness of the colors. We don’t understand (because of our perceived disconnect with the Infinite) that God doesn’t live only in the holy, clean places and faces our mind has sanctified, but in the mud room of the heart: in the full spectrum of feeling, and how that feeling calls us to widen our berth to hold more and more and more of this life and ourselves. In love.