Went for a walk on a frozen lake by my apartment yesterday. That was something I’ve never done before. It’s a pretty big lake, so seeing the whole thing frozen and covered in snow…it was like a wide flat frozen plane. Pretty cool. I like trudging through a frozen wasteland, apparently.
I felt damn good as I began my walk, and female voices flocked around. I pulled away, wanting to be alone, not wanting to be affirmed in any role, and my mood and mindset went south hard. Spent the rest of the walk trying to “see the world despite the people,” with varying degrees of success. Crashed pretty badly emotionally for the rest of the day, feeling like I had missed something good that should have happened–feeling like I’d failed in a psychedelic/spiritual way. Pushed myself to divest emotionally and keep trying, but it was difficult.
It was definitely not as bad as these episodes used to be. I didn’t go down as hard, barely got angry, and generally was inclined to heal and make things better. Still, it was the worst one in a while, and it was hard.
It’s hard to even define for myself what exactly happens and why it hurts me like it does. It has to do with being disconnected, and with the feel of being manipulated emotionally. The cure seems to be to allow your being to be distributed across a community (even if it’s an imaginary one), but I resent the interference and don’t trust the people around me. “Trust to the wisdom and benevolence of your handlers,” is something I say to myself in a wry, mocking way whenever the voices imply that I should be guided by them. For years and years and years they were overtly abusive and flat wrong about who I am and what my issues are. So it’s difficult to accept that kind of distributed being.
I recently heard K.M. Weiland from the Helping Writers Become Authors podcast talk about how the female aspect of the hero’s journey is a move from integration to individuation, while the male aspect is a move from individuation to integration. Shit’s difficult.
It’s tough to allow that when so much of what I’ve encountered in the social world has been so overwhelmingly negative. A lot of this goes back to the small, bigoted Mississippi town I grew up in. That’s where my identity as a loner and an outsider are rooted. Another of my aphorisms is, “If you’re going to eat what is fed you, you better be born lucky. (PS: You weren’t.)”
A solution here could be to trust your own resilience. “Faith is not a rock to be clung to; faith is to keep swimming,” as Alan Watts said. To not be guarded is to trust in yourself, and in your ability to deal with the negative stuff that will come through.
Things are changing, and I’m progressing, though more slowly than I’d like. It will have to do.