Today feels weird in a good way. My sundial shifted and I am no longer in my own shade, meaning that I am no longer willing to stand under the umbrella of my own and others expectations. I am 44 years old now and I finally really like me. For the past 10 years or so I have been pulling back the layers of expectation like dried mud stuck to a geode. I knew the real me was deeply protected inside the rock of who I had become and I was relentlessly determined and dedicated to the dig.
Archeology is another passion of mine….What lies hidden under the layers is so much more interesting to me than what shines bright on the surface.
So my excavations began when I fell ill beneath the years of layers of those expectations where my tribe had held me “safe”. Locked in a form I grew to hate. I was no more than a puppet of entertainment and projection for the parents who were too scared and paralyzed with feelings of their own inadequacy to perform on their own stage. I needed love and approval, as all children do, and the illusion of security and stability so, I, like Shirley Temple learned to perform for what I needed.
I learned to do what I was told in order to be accepted by the tribe, even when it went against my inner value system and inner moral code. I learned to negate my own inner voice and deep feelings when what I wanted and valued was diametrically opposed to what was expected of me. I learned to be invisible and let them see only what they wanted to see and hear only what they wanted to hear.
Thus, I was the perfect daughter….until I quit. I quit needing approval and found the inner me I lost beneath the mudslide of my tribe. Then, I broke the ugly geode in two and discovered a brilliant heart….full of love.
Love doesn’t come from doing what you are told. Love doesn’t come from fearing for your life and buckling under dominance. Love doesn’t come from becoming a sex symbol or a performing diva. Love comes from being really authentic and only then can you find the one person in all the world that loves you just the way you are. No bells and whistles required.