Posts Tagged ‘acceptance

18
Feb
20

Fear, a Personal Analysis of the Concept

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A wise man once said…

Fear is a reluctance to accept and learn from a possibility.

[This shall be a pooling place of thoughts and/or philosophy on the concept(s) of fear.]

Unlike denial, which is an absolute resistance to something being a possibility, fear acknowledges the possibility and responds with a frown of disapproval. If allowed to fester and grow, fear becomes a vile mold or weed that feeds off the energy that keeps its host active; it saps motivation and ambition. Some can dismiss nightmares in a short span of time; others remain troubled by them. And, still others may repeat the nightmare (in what is known as a “recurring nightmare”), similar to deja vu and a difficult reincarnation; some might say this is karma or learning a hard lesson while others would judge it as a reluctance to let go of a figment of the imagination. None of it is real…except to the one who experiences it and, perhaps, those who’ve already had the same or a similar experience.

In Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, when Luke Skywalker is told Darth Vader is his father, he scowls and squeals as he says this cannot be true. He is genuinely afraid of the possibility he does not want to accept. If Luke was purely brave, ignorant and/or unafraid, he would have kept a straight face and told Darth Vader to go stick his red lightsaber where the sun doesn’t shine. And, it wasn’t “the force” making Luke afraid, either, even if Darth Vader, with his oddly skull-like mask, can be a bit intimidating.

Some fears are common, easier to share and accept as real, fears of the dark, deadly creatures, clowns, heights, cramped spaces, etc. Others are more particular and personal, fears of threatening people we’ve met, fears of dogs after being attacked by one, fears of eating a certain food after someone tricked you with a tainted sample, fears of trusting certain merchants after being duped into buying something, fears of rape after being a victim.

In regards to the last example, a fear of rape may be common, experienced by many, but every individual experiences it a little differently based upon the type of person who assaulted them. Someone first raped by a family member will not be as wary of a stranger while the one raped on the street will not be as concerned about family assaulting them. Thus, one victim may not always be able to “relate” with another; there may be resistance to comforting each other from a shade of difference.

Some say fear is good; they claim you cannot know or feel courage without knowing fear. But, how courageous are they who are programmed to fear a “common enemy” and/or follow the orders of a commander without question? Are all soldiers brave? Are they not also afraid? Are some not more afraid than brave? Are the ones who are more brave than afraid also naive? How many truly know the enemy and the reasons to be afraid and/or brave? [Gee. That’s a lot of questions I just asked.]

Fear is often, not always, broken by experience. You’ll fear cutting yourself less once you’ve cut yourself enough times and learned how to tend the wounds…and you’ll eventually, hopefully, become wise enough to avoid repeating the mistakes.

[Let me just pause right there to mention……I am not talking about “cutter” cutting. I don’t mean people who cut themselves to bleed out the pain they think this act will relieve. That is a different psychological puzzle with traces of will in the mix. A person who cuts him or her self while tackling a task, cutting wood, working with metal, etc., may be cut and learn from the experience. An emotional and troubled “cutter” ignores the lesson in favor of a sensory experience, similar to how some people use sex for pleasure and forget the emotional relationship aspect which often translates into “making love.”]

Similarly, we become less afraid of monsters and “things that go bump in the night” when we walk enough dark corridors, get tired of mysterious sounds in the dark and watch enough scary movies to make us laugh at what some deem horror. There’s a word for that, a word some may have a tough time spelling. Fear loses its strength the more we become numb to it. And, once we are numb enough to the fear, we can and must then rise above it.

I keep thinking back to a TV movie I’ve watched a few times, Merlin. In that movie, the grand wizard-in-training dismisses his enemy by ignoring her, depriving her of the response and attention she demands. He says she will be forgotten when and if people turn away from her. How peaceful and poetic is that justice? He didn’t lay a hand on her. He didn’t fight her. He just walked away from the fight and let “the powers that be” sort everything out. Now, sure, if the gods were cruel, his enemy could have stabbed him in the back or moved the sorceress in front of him in a way that would make her a constant pest to his senses. But, that wasn’t how the story ended. In any case, Merlin’s example sheds light on how we must get past our fears…but only once we’ve conquered them. Without having a firm grip on ourselves and proving a fear no longer can hurt us, it remains with us like a difficult infection or disease.

From personal experience, I’ve been living with a number of fears. Some come with/from a lack of experience; I acknowledge that. Others come from experiences I refuse to repeat, even if a harsh higher power puts me right back in the pit with the troublemakers. Some would say I need to go to the sources of my fears, face them and get over the feelings. But, there are some “sources” facing would only agitate the feelings. And, yet, I am sure facing even those sources would have some positive effect, a thickening of the skin as all repeat experiences should have. [To each their own path to recovery.]

Just imagine having a fear for more than a decade…for more than a few decades…for as long as one has been a legal adult or even longer, in some cases.

As a kid, I had a fear of the dark. It wasn’t so tragic that I needed a light on at all times or a hand to guide me to the bathroom. But, it pecked at me for a while. Then, I stubbed my toes a few times and confronted shadows; I spent more and more time sitting in dark places when I didn’t want to face scary company my parents kept and when I didn’t want to put up with guests who smoked, drank and spoke aggressively. I grew a thick skin that still has a slight fear of what lurks in the dark; I still shudder, occasionally, when I let a possibility enter my mind.

The best remedy I can give for this sort of fear is to accept whatever comes; if you are meant to die from what troubles you in the dark, you will. And, you cannot avoid it. Luckily, I’d hope, anything lurking in the dark won’t have an effect on more important matters like personal long-term finances. So, you might get assaulted and robbed of SOME wealth; but you’ll live to bank another day.

I’ve also been a victim of bullies most of my life. Pick a decade, and I can describe a few pests who have jabbed me with needles of ridicule and intimidation. I can cover one hand with the number I’ve stared down and repelled by my own defiance. The other hand holds those who eluded my seemingly limited influence. I cannot deny the possibility another won’t appear. I must accept this and be prepared for it. I should not be or have to be troubled by the possibility, at my age. But, such is life, and, so far, life keeps throwing me rockheads. [Maybe that’s why I become so fascinated with Geodude in Pokemon games. It’s a sort of therapy for dealing with bullies.]

[This ties a bit into how I feel about “supporting the troops.” I hear countless pleas for donations and support for forces taking it upon themselves to root out “evil,” “enemies,” “disease” and “threats.” But, from my experiences with bullies–and my fair share of ailments–it’s hard for me to buy “bully insurance.” I recall some TV shows of my youth that offered such remedies; victims would be asked by brave bigger kids to pay for the services of a protector. But, what guarantee does this provide? The brave bigger kid is not always around when a bully decides to strike; he cannot be everywhere at once and has his own life to maintain. Just as soldiers have families and friends and duties placed upon them by their governments; they cannot spend all of their time and energy on confronting things that may go boom in the night.

A soldier, in my opinion, is called upon to deal with a warring threat. War calls, and the soldier answers. If there is no war–only a fear of war or violence–the soldier is facing a vague enemy and at risk of paranoia and its ugly cousins. A soldier riddled with fear and doubt is open to sneak attacks and confusion. A soldier with a set goal in mind and the preparation to deal with anything that crosses his/her path is more likely to succeed in his/her mission.

And, as a supporter of said soldier, if the objective of the soldier in need is not clear, donated resources are at risk of waste, just as some buy groceries to satisfy a possible need but then let the food rot as they become involved in other preoccupations.]

Now, I have spilled quite a load from my busy brain. I don’t know how to conclude. So, I will leave things as they lay and let readers do with my notions what they will. Discuss.

08
Dec
14

One Person’s Quirk Is Okay with Another

I like to think of myself as a multifaceted therapist. I’m a great back massage giver. I call them magic fingers. I haven’t done much with it, but I consider myself a decent art therapist (using art exercises to help people work through their “mental clutter”). And, I’ve been a decent listener most of my life without collecting $75-250 an hour for my time and saying very little.

But, here I am catching a few minutes of one goofy talk show in a million and hearing these “professionals” tell people with quirks that bother them that they should get help…and all I want to say is, “I don’t mind that quirk. I think it’s kinda cute. It’s unique and refreshing.”

And, isn’t that okay? Aren’t our quirks okay? Or, is every little odd/unique thing we do automatically a reason to sound the therapist/nut house alarm?

Warning: I’m about to rant. So, if you suffer from a “short attention span,” you may want to skip down past the partitioned section to the wrap-up.

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That’s ridiculous! It’s a quirk. It was probably caused by conditioning from exposure to some particular behavior from other people…whether that’s family, classmates or coworkers. And, all it takes to get out of that “kink” is to adjust yourself to someone new who makes you more comfortable. Until then, any conditioning therapy is going to be like slapping a smoker on the wrist to make them quit. You might force change, but will that make you feel better or just break the habit? Will you feel good about changing yourself or just comply with one more reprimand from peers? Is peer pressure a prescription for costly therapy and/or hazardous medication?

If you ask a “professional” outside the office, I am sure they’d love to set you up with a session schedule if they are starved for clients. But, once you get in that office, if they tell you your quirk is just part of you that you need to accept, what are you paying them for? And, if they recommend treatment or pills, what are you doing in that crazy person’s office??

A “professional” cannot replace family and friends the person really needs who will likely know more about the person rather than have them have to dig up aaaaall the history anew for some total stranger collecting a steep hourly fee. And, if you add up all the hours it would take to go through all that family history to get the “professional” up to speed, how much do you suspect that would cost?

Have you ever heard these expressions?

If it isn’t broken, don’t fix it.

One man’s trash is another man’s treasure.

I am so sick and tired of what some consider a weakness or strange being sufficient reason for telling someone to “get help.” It’s bad enough kids get bullied in school for having a big head or small frame or a lack of a good role model/sport coach or extra body fat.

Well, guess what.

I suffer from poor self-confidence.

I grew up with a small frame and a big head for which I was frequently pestered.

I was bullied.

I had a fifth grade teacher who couldn’t stop clearing her throat; so I started doing it reflexively, and it took a whole year to break the habit. These things happen. The same way we pick up and lose accents when we live among different cultures.

I have lost some hair in places, and it makes me uncomfortable.

I wear eyeglasses, and they make me feel crippled; but I cannot see myself ever using contact lenses without infecting my eyes because my hands are too busy to be that clean when needed.

And, ya know what else?

If you’re kinda quiet, shy or humble (not as bold, confident and daring as the people around you), that’s just fine. I won’t mind.

If you feel the need to pick your nose, you’re human. Just do it when I am not looking and clean those fingers, after.

If you burp for whatever reason, an “Excuse me” is wonderful. But, I won’t think you rude or weird if you forget.

If you wear two different socks, is that such a big deal?

[I think I’ve said some of these before. And, it wouldn’t surprise me if you found them among older posts (like the “looking for love and happiness” ones where I state my “dating preferences”). There are habits I don’t like, including some people who talk incessantly without conscience as if they can’t tell when someone isn’t genuinely listening to them…yet they keep talking even as I walk away. But, if I wasn’t quirk tolerant, I don’t think I’d find someone like Zooey Deschanel appealing, at all.]

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If you have a quirk, some habit that is unusual to others, it doesn’t mean you are mentally ill or unworthy of someone’s affection/attention. It may be annoying to some, but I’d prefer not to think it bothers EVERYONE. And, if your chosen spouse or mate happens to be bothered by it, maybe you’re hanging with the wrong tree. Ya know?

Every piece of the big picture puzzle fits somewhere. It just may be more difficult to find their place for some (myself included). It doesn’t mean we cut off our “bumps” to fit better. But, if YOU don’t like some aspect of yourself, it’s your call to change/fix it.

[Gosh, I get worked up when “professionals” turn nature into costly experiments.]

15
Sep
14

As If They Were Nothing

AsIfTheyWereNothing_wallppr-ap1200750-1J

My parents saved so many pieces of their growing past and oodles of things they thought might be worth more someday: their first set of kitchen furniture, tea sets, light fixtures, quilts, suits and figurines of all sorts. But, the things I valued the most they threw away as if the former were nothing.

Trust. Love. Acceptance. Patience. Empathy. Talent. Effort. Friendship. Teamwork. To name a few.

‘Leaves you feeling all warm and tingly inside; doesn’t it?

04
Aug
14

There Is a Bed–wishful version

theresabed_sensual-bedroom-setting_wallppr-ap1200750-1J

 

There’s a bed waiting for me,
Waiting to fold me into its fluffy, yielding covers,
Waiting to accept and embrace me in its comfort,
Waiting to share thoughts and opinions,
Waiting to make the senseless reasonable,
Waiting to make the arduous easier to conquer,
Waiting to make paperwork and materialism go away,
Waiting to dismiss gossip and politics,
Waiting to nurture trust and faith,
Waiting to dispel bitterness and despair,
Waiting to work out differences,
Waiting to find the missing puzzle piece,
Waiting to connect the dots,
Waiting to teach me a lesson and learn something new,
Waiting to explore,
Waiting to occasionally forgo exploring and be content where we are,
Waiting to be creative,
Waiting to leave behind clever notes and invitations,
Waiting to reward attendance,
Waiting to exchange massages,
Waiting to gaze upon the stars with mutual speculation,
Waiting to share a pizza or two,
Waiting to share movies both good and bad.
Waiting to share fantasies.
Waiting to share games and cartoons like eternal youths,
Waiting to share music, dance and song,
Waiting to share stories,
Waiting to compose masterpieces as a team,
Waiting to craft costumes and attend masquerades,
Waiting to paint the town any number of colors,
Waiting to plan the next adventure,
Waiting to show and see there is nothing to fear,
Waiting to accompany me on the journey,
Waiting to provide time and space for solitary meditation,
Waiting to welcome me back when that moment has passed,
Waiting to remind me why I like it so much,
Waiting to wipe the dirt from my face (or ignore it),
Waiting to nurse my bruises,
Waiting to strip me of my woes,
Waiting to turn my frown with a kiss,
Waiting to dazzle me with her hair,
Waiting to move me with her eyes,
Waiting to explore me with her strong yet delicate fingers,
Waiting to peel out of her mousy disguise,
Waiting to inspire me with the beauty of her craftsmanship,
Waiting to accent the moment with the proper setting,
Waiting to growl at thunder and yelp at lightning,
Waiting to run and laugh in the rain,
Waiting to find a hiding place at the beach or in the forest,
Waiting to fill the space with candles, leaves and flower petals,
Waiting to purr beneath a full moon,
Waiting to roll in the mud, pudding, leaves, sand or snow,
Waiting to get messy and clean up after ourselves,
Waiting to be sensible and not reckless with our passions,
Waiting to make sure we won’t be disturbed,
Waiting to cast off the preconceived notions of others,
Waiting to liberate our senses,
Waiting to rest peacefully side-by-side,
Waiting to let the perfumes evaporate from our bodies,
Waiting to share a hot bath or shower,
Waiting to make the most of sponges, bubbles and lather,
Waiting for a private turn before sharing a spontaneous slumber party,
Waiting to stay up all night and yet not lose a day,
Waiting to be loved,
Waiting to reassure me I will never be alone,
Waiting to wipe away the tears of doubt,
Waiting to elate with a smile when given a sign of hope,
Waiting to rise with the sun,
Waiting to breathe new life into each other,
Waiting to face the next day with renewed energy.
Waiting to pool strengths and bear with the weaknesses of aging,
Waiting to face death without fear,
Waiting to be thankful for and celebrate what we shared,
Waiting to return what was given,
Waiting to move on in peace.
There’s a bed waiting for me.
And, it feels so good to be home.

 

~Writingbolt, 7-30-2014

[In one of my rare attempts at poetry, this is the uplifting alternative to what first

came out as a negative, emotional outburst.]




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