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Off Center, Fucking Rattled

I love these lupines growing in my yard from earlier this summer. I love their full flourishing. I love the round stone balanced on top of these other stones. The total set of three stones stands about two feet above the ground.

First, let’s be clear. “Centered” does have a context in which it is perhaps just a bit over rated, no? When I reference “centered” I generally mean grounded. Or clear. Or in flow. Those are all great things that I seek. When I reference the over rated part of centered I generally mean the blocking of needed disturbance (or some weird inherent shame of being off center). The commitment to a myth of stability. The rejection or repression of learning only available in some disequilibrium.

It was several of my teachers that helped me to learn about the value of change. The reality of change. The ever present process of change. When I reference “change” I am talking about the whole scope and scale. The inner changes in awareness and psychological maturity that have everything to do with outer world. It always does. No, seriously, always. When I reference “change” I am talking about a much more encompassing sense of time, how now connects to a perceived past and future.

I suppose it is true that belonging has always been a challenge for me. It’s a bit funny to say that because I’ve always been with good people in family, friendship, colleagueship, community. I expect belonging. And at the same time, some deeper level of belonging, with its fears and worries, the integration of life’s inherent wounds, particularly in childhood, also accompanies me. I know it is this way for many of us, living in such apparent contradictions. Some of the deepest work I know is an integration of self.

Well, with some of this as background thinking, I wrote this poem recently. I gave myself permission to amplify my description. Sometimes it is some amplification that creates access to the gem. Perhaps the greatest belonging, or the must abundant seed for belonging, is the belonging that we claim with self (and often through good friends that can remind us again and again — I’m grateful for those in my life).

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Off Center, Fucking Rattled

I get off center
(by that I mean fucking rattled)
when I do not trust
in the stories I share,
in the experience that I know,
and in the teachings that I create. 

I get fucking rattled,
thinking that I need to be
something other than what I am,
that I must once again,
abandon myself
to have belonging.

That’s fucked,
right?

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3 Responses to Off Center, Fucking Rattled

  • Lovely dear friend

  • Yes. Lovely. So much truth.

  • That’s fucked. Right. And as fucked as it is, it is my common experience. By common I mean that it resides someplace inside of me all of the time. I am like you in that I have never felt I belonged, even when all around me were lauding my leadership skills or how easily I met people or…well, you know. I have always felt as though I were just on the edge of the circle of those who belonged whether it be in school or work or the community work I have done. It was a relief to be the consultant, the trainer, the one who was not expected to belong, but to come in and do my thing and make everything better and bow and leave. Among my earliest memories are of my much older sister telling me that I did not belong in the family and it would be better for her and everyone else if I had not been born. Is that the source of my not feeling as though I belong or did I bring it in with me in this lifetime or is it an epigenetic thing? I do not know. But I believe you have hit the nail on the head. Whatever the source or the circumstances, the truth lies somewhere in the idea that I have not found “me” inside of me. And that is what I am working on right now. Stay tuned. I adore you.

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