I got a prompting to re-examine myself in the light of recent events. Specifically things surrounding Chris, but also things having to do with Kender and my religious community. I need to take a step back, take a breath, and reconsider who I am in relation to promises and commitments I want to make. I need to gather myself and focus on living true to myself and where I want to be. Do I want to be Chris? No, I merely see things in her that I admire and would like to emulate. Am I a religious leader? No, I don’t think so, but I do have a place there.
I am that one on the edges, the one who flirts with many paths, the one who takes unconventional steps toward my goals. I am the one who yearns to learn and hungers to share my knowledge with others, to open their eyes to possibilities they might not have considered or realized were there. Part of me longs to be just a molecule of water flowing along the river with everybody else, but part of me knows that I am also the rock in the middle of the water, breaking the flow, creating a hazard to travel, making waves, the thing that others watch out for.
Do you want to know why I hardly ever send out thank you notes for anything? When I was younger, it wasn’t that I was ungrateful. I just forgot, and forgot, and forgot, and then I was too embarrassed to do it when I finally remembered. Over the years, that became the grand theme of it: too embarrassed to send thank you cards this year when I forgot all the years before. My brain turns that into a general disregard for commercial cards and formal things, but there’s the root of it. I’m just embarrassed of being a loser at the game of social niceties. But I’m not ungrateful.
Do you want to know why you hardly ever see me donating to charity or doing volunteer work? Because I don’t like to be seen. I’m afraid of being noticed. I don’t know why. There’s nothing to be embarrassed about there, but that’s how I feel. I’m the one who wants to sneak an offering into a donation box when nobody is looking, rather than put it openly in the plate as it’s passed. I’m the one who sends cash in unmarked envelopes. I’m the one who leaves things on porches and hopes they’re found. I drop things off without leaving my name. I make anonymous tips. I don’t sign my donations. I don’t want to be noticed. I’m just more comfortable in the shadows and on the edges, but I am always there for a friend.
As of this writing, my first post about Chris’ death has gotten 945 hits. That number blows my mind. I never expected it to circulate that far. It was just me talking to my own quiet little corner of the net, thinking I was still hiding in the shadows, and suddenly a searchlight lit me up. I think my consciously not posting everything here to Facebook since then may have been a reaction to that, my own way of slinking back into the shadows.
I want to live in harmony with the earth, self-sufficient as much as possible. This is a genuine desire, rooted in myself, one that has been there for a very, very long time. It is a desire that I saw reflected in Chris, and I saw her take steps toward it that I had not, and I want to move along down that path that she took before me.
I want to do more for and with my kids, and I don’t want it to be about buying them things. Again, I saw that reflected in Chris, and she took steps that I haven’t yet.
I want to continue my personal growth journey through my religion and my faith because I want to find my happy place. I want to find out how to stand on that piling no matter what birds shit on my head, no matter what ferry slams into me while docking, no matter what hurricane tries to blow me down. I want to find that place in myself where I can know myself and be confident in that, and act from it.