It’s funny how the things that happen to us shape us. Whether we want them to or not, the things that happen to us form us into ourselves. We can never be separate from those situations and events. We carry them in our cells, in our thinking patterns, in our postures, in our relationships.
All humans are are the combinations of situations and bodies bumping up against the situation-body combo of each other.
When I think about myself this way, I find myself more tolerant and patient with what I might perceive as short-comings any other time.
A few minutes ago, I thought about how I don’t like people supporting me. This is because I have a history of dishonest, dysfunctional people in positions that society says should support us. When you have a history of receiving “support” from unsupportive people AND in a society that teaches you that those unsupportive people are the one who should support you, you end up with a bit of a messy idea of what support looks and feels like.
The fact is that for so much of our lives, we cannot control what happens to us. We are children and children are offered no autonomy. In societies like the one I was born into, even adults have little autonomy. On any day, you could be legally harmed with little to no recourse.
So, when I ponder the messages our society presents us about the topic of support, I chuckle a bit. Support is never guaranteed. In order for support to be something we value and understand well, we have to have a culture that supports the pre-cepts of support: safety, honesty, co-operation. But that is not the culture I was born into and I don’t live in that culture today.
When you do enough thinking about personal dysfunctions, you start to realize all the ways in which your dysfunctions don’t have anything to do with you. The only control you have over your dysfunctions is whether or not you will continue to display them. And even that can feel hard to overcome for those of us who have also internalized the societal message that we are unimportant.
It takes a bit of narcissism to survive a dysfunctional society and culture. How ironic.
Today, I look my psyche in the eyes.
Today, I shake the loose bits of dysfunction from my body.
Today, I remember that who I am has been informed by what I am not. And, I become a little more okay with that.