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Each of us has our own unique GPS system... Truth-telling is the most thorough navigation tool.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

BODYGUARD, PARTY, OR FAN CLUB?


There are people in our lives who are miracles, sent to us by God, or the powers that be, to guide and inspire us. Others come showing us other choices, other options, tempting us down roads that teach us much if we’re willing to pay attention. Whether a person is a good influence or less than an optimal persuasion is dependent on our motivation for connection.

Are we wanting to have a body guard, a party, or a fan club? Do we want the person to teach us, show us, or do something for us we are afraid to do for ourselves? Sometimes we think a person will be one thing for us, and throughout the time line of the relationship, they become something completely different to us.


I’ve been asked to write about a specific relationship. I recently received an email from a friend I had previously thought was a good influence on me. We studied massage together. During our three years of conversations we generally talked about healing emotional states, releasing turmoils and bringing on calmer states of peaceful and loving creative flow. I’d shared my challenges and gifts with this person. I thought there wasn’t anything I couldn’t trust her with of mine. I thought she was on my team.


Then this email came from her, telling me how critical and angry a person I am. How nobody can please me. That, of course, everyone lets me down, including myself, thus the reason I hate to leave my apartment.

Let me be the first to admit, I constantly deal with issues involving anger and criticism. It's daily work, releasing stimulants that invoke outbursts. It’s been a big change after having used food, alcohol, drugs and sex to numb myself for so many years. Dropping these activities that distract me from my pain so I can feel authentically what is my lesson and meaning in life, it's hard but someone must do it.


How do I live in society and interact with my fellow man when I’m so raw and in touch with painful emotions? So few others are willing to do the work to get conscious. When you find someone you can talk about this with deeply and then they turn on you, or it feels like they turn on you, it is painful indeed. Even though the day was effective, I did get into clothes and out to return library books and replenish groceries and water bottles, I was back in my flannel pajamas by 4 and in bed soon thereafter with a debilitating headache. Not able to give to another today.


She was supposed to give me my last massage today. But she bailed yet again and instead chose to bring me the $50 as she didn’t know when she’d be able to return. I gave her a card about kindness and didn’t write on the card that I felt she’d been unkind in her email, only that I truly appreciated her skills. I wanted her to feel good about her abilities as that is what started her tirade. I think she felt I was displeased with her performance.


I did let her know, as she was walking away, that I thought her letter to me betrayed our trust. "Your hostility, using my intimate concerns, was not kind." Last Saturday she said, "The mark of truth in spiritual growth is whether it inspires kindness to oneself and others." She didn’t think her letter to me was unkind or angry. What did I want from her as my friend, and what do I want from her from this day forward?

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