Wednesday, June 23, 2010
Guilty of Being Guilty!
The weirdest thing happened to me this morning. I am following the program from The Artist's Way. So every morning before I get my day going, I write three longhand pages of whatever comes to my mind. It has been great and I highly recommend checking out the book by Julia Cameron - or google some of her assignments.
The thing is - I bought a new journal to write in. I do not know about other writers, but I am obsessed with notebooks, journals, paper, pens - anything that has to do with writing. So I make my journal and notebook selections very carefully. This journal is a bit shorter than, but as wide as a regular sized spiral notebook. The paper is nice and thick, no bleeding if I decide to use a felt tip or rollerball. It has an elastic band to keep it closed and a ribbon bookmark. It is my favorite color - deep red and most importantly, it fits in my big yellow hobo bag.
So - I have been doing my "morning pages" religiously in my new journal since Saturday. My everyday journal ( I use the Black n' Red spirals) has only been jotted in a few times. Mostly notes to myself and my TODO TODAY list. This morning, as I began writing I started thinking about my good old Black n' Red. I thought, maybe I should go back and start writing in it again. It was kinda unfair that I abandoned it for this beautiful spankin' new journal. I sighed at the image of it sitting on my desk forsaken and unused. How utterly sad.
I operate on an auto-pilot guilt system. If the house isn't all that clean, I am a terrible housekeeper. If I scream at my kids, I am a bad mother. If I fail to give my husband a hug, I am a terrible wife. You get the picture. The truth is that I am pretty good at all those things. We live in a fun, kinda cool, happy household that only stinks half the time.
I think for many of us women, we are almost conditioned to second guess our abilities. Look at what images of womanhood are thrown at us everyday through print and TV. You can't go anywhere without a call to BE BETTER! You know what commercial I hate? The Glade commercial where the husband throws his gym bag on the living room chair and the air freshener just sucks away the funk. I mean - if that is the worst of it -of course your Glade plug-in will work in your absolutely ridiculously clean and perfectly decorated home. Try it in a room where your two sons pee the bed almost every night. The truth is I hate that commercial because I really want a ridiculously clean, perfectly decorated house and for so long I stressed and felt terrible about myself because I couldn't achieve it. I think we question our abilities because no matter how well we do - somewhere the impossible standard of perfection is looming way WAY above our current reality.
It doesn't matter if we stay at home, work at home, or work at work. It doesn't matter if we are single, married, partnered or childless. Everywhere we turn there is a judge and jury just itching to show us our shortcomings and debate our life strategies and beliefs. Someone is always in the shadows ready to tell us we are simply wrong. Not just wrong about the BIG things like religion, parenting and TV watching. (Celebrity Apprentice anyone?) The shadow people let us know we are wrong about everything from the way we handled a conflict at work to our asinine choice of paper towels.
These shadow people who are ready to pounce can be friends, family, co-workers, bosses, and fellow bloggers. (I won't even get into the blog commentors). But the worst of the worse is that person that lurks in the corners of our own minds that cause us to question even the little things we do. Wrapped in those nagging second-guesses is guilt. That pain we feel because we aren't doing "it" right.
However, the great thing is we are aware. I really believe that right in the core of who we are - we know the deal about all the guilt and self questioning. It may just take a little something to spark that face-off. The good news is that Life always presents us with that something that makes you stand up and say, "What the hell am I thinking!" Then we look at IT, the life that we feel we aren't doing right, and we realize, there is really nothing wrong with IT. IT may not be perfect - but IT is fine just the way IT is.
And I can write in any flippin' notebook that I want!