Sorry (not sorry) about the profanity. I’m naturally a potty-mouth, I have toned it considerably down for the blog. Anyway, this is a good one. I have had a lot of stuff weighing me down over the course of my life. Some of it took therapy to get rid of, and some of it I still carry. Not least of all is the actual weight I carry. It’s a comfortable shield to hide behind. I’ve been this way for so long that I’ve forgotten what i look like when I’m not fat. I’m having to create my own Frankenstein image from pictures and wants because the last time I was truly thin I was 17. I’m never getting that body back. I’ve had 3 kids! Even if I get fit and skinny, no one has the body they had a 17. So, it’s a whole new world where I can create the body I want in my mind and then shoot for it.
There are other things weighing me down as well. So many preconceptions of the way life, or I, am supposed to be. For all that I grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area punk scene, I’m a conventional little Miss. I have had these pictures in my head of how I am supposed to act and look and think. At 40 years old, I’m finally figuring out how to get rid of all that stuff and create a life that I like and that I want to live. I’m 5 years out from my bipolar diagnosis and finally feeling like the cycles aren’t going to come back as long as I take my meds. I’ve cleared the decks to be able to take over my life. Now I get to construct it.
It’s a little exciting. I’m out of school for the foreseeable future, I’m a homemaker, I’m no longer at the mercy of my bipolar cycles, and I have a supportive family. I told my husband last night about my plans to totally shake up my life, and he smiled, said, “uh oh!” and advised me on how make some of it easier. He supports me in anything I do and that’s incredibly important when you’re trying to figure out who you are going to end up being once the dust settles.
Most people go through this in their 20’s I understand, but right now I’m in a period of refining. I’m letting all of those things that don’t serve me fall away. I’m shaping my life and getting rid of all of those ideas of who and what I should be and trying to see down to the bottom of who I actually am. From that base I can build up and embrace the person that I’ve become over the course of my life. I’m finding out some things that I like and some that I don’t. I’m breaking free of some of my early conditioning (from school and parents and my sister and friends) and, while I don’t know where my life will end up going, I do know that I have some time available to me and it’s a good time to work on me.
My fundamental beliefs haven’t changed significantly since I was younger. I still believe in the things I believed in when I was young, just more sophisticated and nuanced versions. In fact, my beliefs are getting stronger the older I get. I’ve added some things, too that change how I see myself. I’m more of an early hippie than I thought. Not the later hippies who just had lots of sex and did drugs all the time (though it does sound like it must have been fun!), the early ones who were political and committed and believed that the country and the Earth were in trouble and it was their responsibility to speak truth to power and fix it. At least that’s always been my impression of the movement.
Anyway, I’ve always been introspective and I believe in working on myself to make myself better. Now it’s a matter of making myself actually, wholly me. I’ve cared for too long what other people thought, now it’s time to find out what I think.