2018 was big for me.
I had a shift in reality and level-uped how I totally saw the world and my place in it, especially my part in causing my suffering and how much ownership I was lacking in my life.
On the outside, I'm living by myself in an apartment with an extra bedroom. I have a graduate degree and a career that provides for me to eat, live and vacation. I don't have a husband or a boyfriend that pays my rent or necessities. It would appear that I'm a picture for an independent self-sufficient woman who is taking care of herself. I'm sure you would see this and believe that, and I did too. Well, sort of, because somewhere deep inside I felt lacking and felt that there was definitely more to my life. I was very unhappy, but I refused to own that truth. I didn't want to own my fragility.
I have been seeing a therapist for half a decade now because I knew life could be better. I thought this placed in me in a position where I was getting help, seeing things clearly, workings towards self-improvement and having a handle on my life.
In 2017, I had sold myself to this societal idea that in order for me to be happy or "complete", a partner had to be involved. It was pure delusion and I let myself become deluded. I let myself be disappointed, feel unsafe, and be lied to over and over so that this delusion would be achieved. I suppressed these things in order to have to relationship I had in 2017.
My psyche rebelled, and I would have nightmares that would shake my core during this time. My unconscious was screaming at me to wake-the-fuck-up.
The nightmares stopped after the breakup.
It's so easy to sell our soul when we're running our life half blind to our real desires, not admitting to our most deepest feelings, numbing with distractions, and letting our ego run the show. It's even easier when all the external factors in your life point and say, "I've met and checked off those milestones that indicate maturity and being an adult."
2018 is the year I took the rose colored glasses off.
Or at least the first pair.
And that's the thing, once one pair is off, I understood how deeply the self-delusion, the maladaptive thinking patterns could go. It is strangely fascinating and terrifying what the mind can do when it think it has to protect you (from reality). It is equally fascinating how much of our own suffering is self-inflicted.
In Buddhist teachings suffering is either caused clinging or aversion* (verifying this).
I'm definitely a clinger (to hopes, dreams, expectations).
So I might be wearing another brand of rose colored glasses now.
AND THAT'S OKAY
Because this year I learned to be a little more curious, a little more willing to lean into pain to see what it is trying to tell me, sometimes the message feels ugly but transformation is never pretty. I use to be too proud (arrogant) of all the time and effort I was putting in to my self-improvement and knowledge, but I was still blind to the shadowy parts of myself. Now I know better. This work is quiet not boisterous, it's toil and seeding are personal. If I have done the work, then the garden will speak for itself.