Welcome to humanity!
That was a zinger from my therapist back in 2000. Yikes! I still remember that moment like it was yesterday. Her sitting on her chair across from me, me with tears in my eyes, desperately looking for comfort. And just like that, bam. So unexpected…and needed.
I was 32 and grieving the life I thought I was going to live after I’d learned about my husband’s affair. I was in shock. What I learned in that session was that my sadness and shock were less about his affair and more about what I admitted to her: “Now I’m just like everyone else.” That’s when she responded “Welcome to humanity.”
I will forever be grateful for her boldness and candor. And, yet, one big “ouch”. It truly stung. It also settled somewhere deep in my gut as truth. In one brief moment, the veil came off of my eyes and I saw the illusion I had been living. All of that inner dialogue I’d had about my life being THE way to live that others should adopt so they could also be happy was junk. Pure rubbish. In an instant, I was reduced to what felt like nothingness. Life’s “hand holds” vanished – all of those things I’d relied on to tell me the world was okay: perfectionism, being the best, achievement as value.
At the time, still vehemently following and believing in my perfectionistic over-achieving ways, my next logical step was to continue to prove that I was better by being the best “human” around. I’m sure you can guess how that worked out.
The point of this post is not to share some high-achieving story about my gradual acceptance of my humanity and how I finally “got it”, but to highlight how I still don’t get it (insert big sigh of relief).
On days like today, when all of the feelings are running amok and I feel completely out of control, I’m reminded…
- just how human I am.
- that I don’t have the answers.
- that sometimes being human can feel a bit much.
I am reminded that what I am experiencing is part of the construct my mind works really hard to hold onto, but that doesn’t really define me at my core. I am so much more than my feelings and my crazy thoughts. I am beauty, brilliance, connection, heart, wisdom and strength.
What truly defines you? Here are a few options for you to start with:
My go-to on days like today is to get quiet and cocoon. I clear my schedule as much as possible. I talk to friends. I do my best to tune in, even though that might mean feeling some tough feelings. And I remember that this flavor of humanity will eventually give way to the light, bright, joyful version of me who is ready to step back into the fray.
What is your way of being on these days? Until next time…
Don't Miss a Beat!