50 Roads #13 – SELF-RESPONSIBILITY
(Roads #11-17 are letters to myself for what I wanted to find in therapy – they are filled with questions that I invite you to ask yourself)
It’s time for me to take responsibility. It’s time to set aside the damsel in distress garb and put on my true clothing, the regalia of a warrior.
It’s time for me to grow up. It’s hard to go from youth to elder, but it is time. I am done crying. I am done molting. I am done waiting.
I want to stop looking outside of myself and outside of my connection to the Divine. I want to take responsibility for myself and give up the oppressive need to have someone save me – that same need that quickly turns to an addictive need to save others.
I want to stop feeling like others are responsible for my future, and that I am responsible for the future of others.
I want to take responsibility for the way I react when things don’t feel fair, or when I feel that broken things need to be fixed whenever I see them. I am responsible for the broken things in my own life. I am responsible for how I react to my perception of unfairness. My need for fairness and fixing blinds my eyes and ties up my hands and binds my heart in plaster wrap.
I want to remember that in regard to others, at this stage in my life, I am only responsible to show up in the circle of our human family, hand in hand, and to step outward in the circle to make room for others whenever they want to be there. I am also responsible for taking the time away from everyone and everything in order to heal sometimes. I know that there will always be a place for me in the circle of humanity and family when I am ready. I am responsible for finding the right hands to hold in that circle. I am responsible for BEING the right hands for someone else to hold in that circle.
I want to live out my own responsibility knowing that there will always be difficulty and distraction. There will always be unexpected bends and curves in the road. The road will sometimes end before I get to my destination. There will always be something confronting me that gives me the opportunity to choose between creating or destroying. Stalling or moving. Life or death. Kindness or contempt. Love or fear. Almost every single moment has 2 hands outstretched with one or the other to choose from. I want to take responsibility for what I do in those moments AND what I do after I choose.
I am going to mess up, even with best intentions. There will be times when I will wish I would have chosen differently. Those moments also hold tremendous opportunities. I want to take responsibility for choosing course correction over shame or blame. I want to extract the powerful lessons that come from “failure” and “mistakes” and I want to utilize the resulting potent energy of knowing I’ve missed the mark to fuel another try…and another.
I want to stop giving my own responsibility away for the results and rewards and consequences of my own life’s choices. Every action has a consequence. Every choice, every thought. Every next moment, and what happens in that moment, it all has consequences. Whatever I choose, I want to take responsibility for.
When triggers come up, I don’t want to point my finger at the person who just showed up at an unfortunate time and place and bumped up against an old wound that has nothing to do with them. I want to take responsibility for my triggers and see them as sacred opportunities to look at what needs to be addressed and healed. I want to take responsibility for my own healing.
I don’t want to point fingers anymore, except to point my own finger back at my own heart and gently remind myself…look here, look here, listen here….don’t look away from here….
I want to take responsibility for the fact that everything that is not love is a distraction from the next right move. Everything. All of it. If there is not love to choose from, I have the power to create it and it’s always going to be better to start from scratch than to choose something that is not love — just because it’s the least destructive thing to choose from. I want to have the strength to take responsibility for walking away from non-love distractions and creating love in the right places where there is no love.
But I also don’t want to give my life-force away to places that will only suck my life-force away as I try to force my love into it or onto it. When I force the things that I think are right, it is taking away the choices of another.
I want to take responsibility for the times I try to force things.
There are things I don’t get to choose but I get to choose what I do next with those things — blame and shame and self pity are such a waste of time and energy.
I want to take responsibility for what I take-in to my body, my mind and my spirit — and what reactions those things create in my body and my mind and my heart. Food, media, expectations, demands, hugs, help, mercy….taking any of these things in has dramatic consequences, to create or to destroy.
When it’s time to cut out a cancer in my life , I want to take responsibility for focusing on the life that this act of removal will save, and not on the anger and bitterness that I could succumb to once the knife is in my hand. Mercy. Life. The miracle of regeneration. Rather than blame, death and the sting of contempt.
The way I wake up in the morning and set my day is my responsibility.
The way I let myself think as I’m going to sleep is largely my responsibility.
When my mind is weary and turns on me, I need to ask for help.
When I am grieving, I need to sit with my grief.
But when I can, I need to use my life-force to move forward rather than backward.
I want to take responsibility for my habits, my old conditioning, my brain wiring, my heart fractures, my destructive behaviors, my stagnation.
But not mistake shaming myself for personal responsibility.
I want to take responsibility for finding what works best for me, for us…and I want to live into it – even if it is so different from what others are doing or from what others believe I should be doing.
I want to take responsibility for my mistakes….for my blunders, for my carelessness, for my recklessness, for my default behaviors.
I want to take responsibility for what happened because of risks I took or didn’t take – for the times I listened to my gut and did the right thing by myself. For the times I didn’t listen to my gut and lived out uncomfortable consequences. I want to take ownership of what both of those life experiences taught me, and how different the internal outcomes are. I want to learn from that and preserve it forever as wisdom that I can draw from til my last breath.
I want to take responsibility to stop medicating the heartbreak I feel with the slow drip of blame. It’s poison, not medicine. It might make me stop feeling the heartbreak for a while, but it’s a soul-eating poison that tricks me because it distracts me from the immediate pain and numbs away the alarm sounds that pain is meant to bring. I want to sit with my pain and listen to it. It has so much to teach me, so much to tell me, so much to grow me. Blame just kills me slowly from the inside, without me even knowing it’s happening.
I want to take responsibility to listen to what another person is saying, and what they’re truly trying to communicate. And then hold my tongue until I have something useful to say. Not every conversation is a duel. Sometimes it’s just an opportunity to learn and understand. And it’s always an opportunity to grow in some way.
I want to take responsibility for the choice to grow or shrink. The choice to grow in light or grow in anger and intimidation and destruction. I don’t want to be a destroyer. I want to be a creator. I want to trust that if I put enough effort into the life of good things, and no effort or nourishment into the life of destructive things, then the natural consequence is starvation and death of the destructive things, and a beautiful accelerated growth of the good things. Attention, focus and belief are what make things grow.
I can’t save anyone and no one can save me. This is all between me and God. Everyone else’s life is between them and their Truth.
I don’t owe my life, my time, an explanation, a defense to anyone
and no one owes that to me.
When I don’t have what I need, I have to go find it. It’s no one else’s responsibility to do that.
I want to take responsibility and stop thinking about what’s wrong and start thinking about what’s right. I want to stop running away and start running toward.
I want to take responsibility for finding what makes me feel like myself, what makes life feel whole. I want to stop blaming other stuff for how it doesn’t feel like me, how it broke me. I just want to take steps toward what feels right and whole and then I’ll be stepping away from what doesn’t.
I want to take responsibility for the power of my words, the power of music, the power of action, the power of thoughts, the power of beauty, the power of imagination, the power of sitting with my emotions, the power of listening, the power of love, the power of honesty, the power of taking responsibility.
I want to pour my life into love. I want to only allow love to pour into me…and when I falter, I will take responsibility for getting myself back on track.
I will stop lumping people in one group, I will stop lumping myself into one group – I get to choose, they get to choose individually
I will stop being a victim. I will stop participating in things that feel wrong from almost the beginning. I will stop pointing my fingers outward to find fault. I will stop turning my light down to make others feel more comfortable.
I will stop silencing my voice. I will stop doing dumb things in an effort to maintain “peace.” I will stop waiting for the apology, for the mess to be cleaned up, for the monsters to go away. I will stop waiting for the circumstances to be perfect. I will stop waiting.
I will stop stop saying yes when I want to say no
I will stop saying no when I want to say yes
I will stop stepping in front of fists that will be swinging whether I’m there or not. I will to stop trying to love and serve and impress the cruelty out of people who have no desire to stop being cruel. I will stop hoping endlessly that situations and people who have been very consistent will somehow be something different just because I want and need them to be.
I will hold tight to the ones who feel like love.
I will stop expecting others to save me. stop expecting others to validate me. stop expecting others to understand me. stop expecting others to value me. stop expecting others to own their part. stop expecting others to do what I think is the right thing. stop expecting cruel people to be kind.
I will stop moping as soon as it’s time.
I will stop hiding as soon as it’s time.
I am not a child anymore. I am halfway through my life. I want to know that in very few instances do I need someone to come and rescue me or save me. I want to take responsibility for every aspect of my life. When I need help, I want to remember to look up and trust my Creator – for every other human needs to be on their path and not mine. I will never grow if I’m on someone else’s path, only mine.
I take responsibility, and I am free.
This road was a painful one accompanied with lots of grief over my youth. It’s hard to realize that we are older and no one is going to come and save us, but it’s the best feeling in the world to realize not only that you get to save yourself, but that you are capable of it. It’s freedom.
So, phenomenal soul,
Where have you given away your power and your freedom by not taking responsibility for your life?
What can you take responsibility for RIGHT NOW and infuse all of your life force into creating it into something magnificent?
I love you and I believe in you. I believe in me too.
Tomorrow we will start the beautiful journey on The Road to Self-Nurturing.
See you there (I’m so happy you are here)