I have two clear ideas, elements to expand my experience and grow the quality I desire.
1) Convert my garage to an art/work space. Every time I bring the "paints" out to "color" we all engage, often. Having a place to exercise creative is necessary. I have no real plan for how this will happen (exactly), my vision is a "work party". My friends assure me everyone will love to participate. Might do well to provide expression for all ;-) 2) Move from "Caregiver" to "Facilitator". As I involve others in decision making process or just stay open to other views, I will lessen the burden of responsibility to decide all things by myself. I taste the brilliant ideas that fall out of my children's mouths when I am willing to listen. Their perspective on the world around them is delicious. As I witness two patterns: my need to control and my need to accomplish, I am also quite aware of their unfulfilling nature. If I dig deep, I can feel anxiety in the aftermath-simply (I suspect) because I am not actually meeting my needs. It appears I am stuck in a habitual loop of action. I am happy for the experience to uncover.
The more I lean into relationship with myself and put aside all the cultural messages I've received along the way, the more I begin to know how to nourish with care. As I resist trying to solve what I perceive as other people's issues (quite challenging as my identity has been dwelling here for decades) I begin to get a clear message, a real flavor: connection resides in vulnerable. Staying open to this breeds internal intelligence. Being willing to take risks can foster confidence. Negating my feelings is a black hole, I need to embody them with honor. That in itself is my generating respect - a much needed attribute to my well being..
Some of my tracking has brought forward these narratives/stories and physical awareness:
"If I let myself enjoy this, it will end. Then what?"
"I can't have that, I don't deserve it"
"I should be cleaning, this disorder is chaos."
"When everything is done, then I can relax."
"I am so stupid. Everything I say sounds lame."
"I need to try harder, do more."
Physical: anxious, tightness in chest, heart racing, discomfort, and/or exhaustion.
My energy is predicated on how I treat myself and it translates to everyone around me. I can THINK it is quiet, secret and only mine, but it is wholly not the case, my energy emanates from my being and it feeds the world.
"What am I inclined to do when I am challenged?" I spring into action. "When I am working with another, do I take on their responsibility?" Yes. I am quick to take on another's responsibilities. I have twisted it in my head as "helping". I can recognize how hard I resist this when allowing my kids to find their way. I am not the mom to help with homework BECAUSE I just want to do it for them. Here is a blessing practiced often: My kids want me to read their writings all the time and they both deliver this statement: "Do not edit anything, do not change my voice and make it yours, just read it and report back what you think!!!!! If there are any spelling mistakes, ok, BUT DO NOT EDIT."
Can I stay connected to myself and hold openness for the other person? The key here is to maintain ownership of MY experience and bring it to the table. This is not about right or wrong. In this space I can foster many different outcomes. If I really grasp the fact that we all make choices due to our conditioning, that we are all products of our upbringing, then I can accept the spectrum of interpretation and solution. By considering all sides, we can make better choices going forward. Reasonable, right?
If I am stuck in my self doubt, a common tendency can be for me to hold back and avoid, refusing to meet the tension in the moment. I can easily let others drive the train and go along for the ride, however my tension persists. (This is where it gets challenging). I am learning to bring kindness to myself in these moments, to recognize and connect as I deepen relationship. It translates. It is powerful. It is where transformation happens.
When I drop into myself, I am grounding. It is magnetic. It attracts exactly what I need. My essence generates creativity. I can feel it clearly. I want to express myself on paper, in writing, through color/design, cooking, decor and whatever form I may find. Embodying invites the mirror and creates the connection versus my TRYING to make something happen. Did I mention how freeing this is? It is a beautiful experience.
Back to my two ideas. I have spoken to friends about my 'work project' and so far response has been great. I know it is a big job and I really don't know how to accomplish it. Last month I would have done it all by myself in the middle of the night for days on end until it was finished. Now I intend to involve all the brains and bodies I know, invite them to work together in my home so we may create in community. Might be anything I can imagine.
Regarding my kids, my two pre-teens: They can make their own lunches and they can take the bus home from school. Since our 3pmish car ride has turned into a complaining fest that I no longer wish to experience, they can work it all out on public transit. This is a big deal for me as I am really attracted to doing for them. And everytime I lose myself in an act that does not really serve anyone I create disconnect. I want to be deep in my reality and move away from all this surface skimming. Being is not performing.