I have realized a lot of things and made many changes over the last few years but I feel I keep ending up back to my old bad habits and not moving forward. I want to live a fully conscience and intentional life and I think blogging regularly about it will help keep me present and on task.
I keep letting work take over my life. Completely and constantly occupying my time and thoughts even when not at work. Now I've learned my valuable lessons at work and this is time is not for nothing, but I have absolutely no balance. I keep thinking that after this deadline then the next deadline things will calm down and I will have time to do the things I am truly passionate about. Actually I need time to fully discover what I am passionate about. I need to reclaim my life. I ask myself what will my life be like in 10 years, 5 years or even next year if I don't change anything. Will I regret not working more...absolutely not...will I regret not living more...ABSOLUTELY!
So really, what is the dilemma? I keep going for the easy fixes. I want quick feedback, constant "pats on the back". Succeeding at work is easy, I get positive feedback and encouragement. My identity is very much tied to what I do, although I realize it is not who I am. The problem is I don't have a strong identity outside of work. For so long who I am was the same as what have I accomplished. When I am not accomplishing/succeeding I feel lost. I am not sure how to just "be". It scares me. Is this all a result of something inside of me or a reflection of the society in which we live.
I have no kids, yet. That ties into how I feel as well. I want...need a purpose. Work gives me that, but at a high price. If I had kids I don't think I would care nearly as much about my job, because my job would no longer be what my life revolves around. Although I realize having kids wouldn't solve the problem just complicate it? Something outside of me shouldn't be at the center of my life.
That is ultimately the problem...I keep looking outside of myself for the answer, even though in the crazy whirl of my thoughts I keep hearing the whisper "the anwer is inside".
I have spent a lifetime creating walls. Between myself and others, certainly, but worse, walls within myself. I often times don't know how I feel, I have become so detached. I have completely detached myself from my feelings. I'm not even aware of it most of the time. Until a situation presents itself and feelings overwhelm me. But I don't even know where they're from and I push them down again....This would largely explain why I am carrying an extra 60lbs on me.
It is this extra weight that has propelled me in large part on my spiritual journey. What started out as me just wanting to lose weight has turned into something much more. I have realized that I eat instead of feel my feelings. It isn't even something I'm aware of. I don't think to myself, "Wow, that situation is unpleasant, I think I'll have some ice cream". It is entirely unconscience. It is not until I am experiencing uncontrollable cravings that I realize something must be bothering me. I then have to figure out what that something is. I am hoping the longer I am on this journer the easier this will get.
Today this journey took me to Unity Church in Chicago. I have not felt connected to the Catholic Church for quite some time despite my upbringing. Any church that does not treat everyone equally and lovingly fails. I was choked up for most of the service. I feel one measure of a church is how it treats the LGBT community. Unity not only welcomes this community with open arms but the minister talked about opening a safe place for younger LGBT people. I will be back. In fact, I kept thinking to myself that I can't wait a week before returning and was glad to hear there is a Wednesday night service.
Even though I am not (yet) in touch with my own feelings much of the time, I do feel an increasing awareness for the world around me and my role in it. I am now transitioning into veganism. In part because I am now aware of the horrible suffering of animals on factory farms. I can't pretend that animals are killed humanely before becoming dinner. In part because of the environmental impact of these factory farms. And finally because I do not believe eating animals is necessary or even desireable for optimal health. God would not have our optimal nutrition be unsustainable.
I did not set out to be different, but I can not deny what I know and feel in my heart. We are all connected. I cannot hurt another person or an animal without ultimately hurting myself. Anything we say, do, or think that separates us from one another separates us from God.