I took the above picture during my #FeministSelfie365, when I took a selfie every day for a year.
If I were to redo this one, I’d be tempted to show myself staring straight out at the viewer, standing up to my neck in sand as the last of it spilled from above. There ought to be far more sand on the bottom than the top. That’s the whole point of the image–me not liking that time is running out.
But time isn’t running out. Time itself just keeps going. Or rather, time doesn’t really do anything because there is no such thing as time. We made it up. There’s no such thing as the past or the future. There is only now and now and now, an endless stream of now.
Life on the other hand, runs out. At some point, it begins and then at some point, it ends. There is the matter of soul which may float around before or after “the physical” as various mediums claim which I am prone to believe even though my son finds that (and therefore, me) ridiculous but, I digress.
We are encouraged to make good use of our time here, to live our lives to the fullest, to not wait until some imagined moment in the future when we finally feel confident or ready but instead, to boldly step into action toward our dreams and desires.
YES!! I’m one thousand percent for that!
One of the most important ingredients for stepping out of our comfort zones is the capacity to tolerate the feelings that arise when we do, the feelings that naturally and normally come with risk, uncertainty, vulnerability, disappointment, and failure. Those feelings are our friends–not the trash talk our minds dole out.
We get into trouble when we block those feelings because that is when our minds start yammering some version of: you suck, you’re foolish, you’re a loser, what were you thinking, you don’t have what it takes, etc..
That is what stops us. If we can tolerate the feelings, actually feel them and let them move through us, get curious about them, notice them, watch them, be unafraid of them, we can side-step the garbage of our mind and get back to doing what we want and dream of doing.
I mean, isn’t it amazing that we all have these bodies, these wonderfully functioning bodies doing unimaginably magical things every damn second, minute, hour, day, day after day after day? Do you know anyone who doesn’t have one?
Are we giving our bodies their due?
The point is, I’m going to die. So are you. One day, I won’t be able to feel anything. I won’t be able to feel the breeze from the ceiling fan as it tickles my neck, the warmth of my dog’s soft fur where he leans against my thigh, the bubbly openness in my chest as I remember laughing in the car with my mom and sister over the weekend.
But I also won’t be able to feel the heat in my face when I feel self-conscious or the constriction in my throat when I feel enraged or the tension in my mouth when I feel frustrated and aren’t those feelings gifts as well?
One day I will feel nothing because I won’t have this body nor the sensations it brings in every now now now so while I can, I want to expand my capacity to welcome them all.