”There’s this energy in you, like a freight train, it pushes forward no matter what. It’s all about results, achieving, getting there, being the best and doing it right. You have brought this energy into everything you do, even into your so called free time, and it needs to stop.
It will break you if you don’t find a way to stop it.”
I’m getting an intuitive reading from my trusted advisor Alandra, and since what she’s saying now resonates with something in me, I listen. I know she’s right on this one.
If you have followed me for a while, you know that I have spent a good, long while exploring a new way to be and work. One that includes rest and builds on trust. One that’s all about allowing, rather than pushing.
I’ve been more or less forced to do this, because of health issues and a body that refuses to keep going as before. But I’m grateful it’s happening. I’m grateful for this emergency brake. I don’t know if I would have been able to slow down otherwise. I’m painfully aware of how cemented this old pattern is, how powerful the energy that wants to go forward, only forward. Unstoppable, almost. Merciless, like a runaway train.
It’s a drive I think you’re familiar with – whether you find it in yourself or someone you know. Many of us spend our lives relentlessly doing, achieving, proving. Believeing we need to prove our worth first, and then (maybe) we get to rest.
This drive is not mine, I’ve picked it up from somewhere. It’s very important to recognise that. For many years I thought the one pushing was me, all of me, and I did not question the pressure. I wasn’t really aware of what was going on.
But she is not me. Part of me, but not all of me. She has evolved along the way, but she was not there from the start. Her behaviour and beliefs are taught, they’re not original to me.
Long before she came into the picture there was an innocent little one, who squats barefoot in the dirt, peering at a dandelion, making patterns in the sand with a stick. Unaware of time passing and free from the idea that this, in front of her, has to lead somewhere to be worth something. For her, the present moment is all there is. While clock-time is ticking away in the adult consciousness – this construct we bought into and allowed to become our masters.
She’s a slave, the woman who’s in a hurry, but ask her and she’ll claim to be the one in charge.
Her greatest fear is to waste time. What if I were to die now, she says. What if I were to die before I’ve managed to do something valuable.
She doesn’t even mention the kids, that death would separate her from them. She doesn’t care about that. Relationships. The limitations of the body. She doesn’t care what breaks along the way. She’s too afraid to care. Her whole existence is balancing on the edge of an abyss. Until she’s had a chance to prove herself she cannot relax.
She’s so afraid. So rigid. As stiff as my backbone.
I want to hold her, but she won’t be held. She has no time. So I just sit here and watch her running, scratching and clawing at the web of life. Desperate to make a tear, something that shows she was here. That she existed.
It takes awareness not to lose myself in her struggle. But I’m no longer her slave, and something in me softens as she loses her grip of me. Softens and melts. It doesn’t happen by itself. To challenge one of our society’s most deeply rooted beliefs – that our value depends on what we achieve – is not easily done.
But it’s possible, and it’s the path I’ve chosen, tears, exhaustion, confusion and all. I have two kids that can teach me how to play again. I have a body that forces me to understand the meaning of rest. I have a world around me waiting to be discovered, by (newly) awake eyes, full of wonder. By the eternal one inside. She who really is me.