Wednesday, December 17, 2008

My Soul Revealed - Lesson #1: Life Support

So like I said earlier this week, I'm taking some me time out for me to figure out what's going on in my life, what direction my life is going in and how to take better care of me. I'm reading Souls Revealed: A Souls of My Sisters Book of Revelations and Tools for Healing Your Life, Soul and Spirit. Each section of the book talks about different things that we as African American women do, their justifications and how these things can be incredibly dangerous for our health. At the end of each section, there are questions that you answer based on your own experiences and reflections. They are called Soul Revealing Questions. My hope is to read two chapters a night and write about them (on my blog) the following morning (if that damn thing called work doesn't get in the way...)

So chapter one - Life Support:

What are the emotional, spiritual and material needs in your life?

I'm not big on material things. For the most part, I'm pretty plain Jane. I have a few Coach bags but that was because I was working for Coach and often purchased their overpriced merchandise for 65% off. For 65% off, you'd have a few Coach bags too. Most of the "good stuff" that I've bought, I get at a discount. I buy classic items and hold on to them for a REALLY long time. I'm not big into things, maybe that's the tomb boy in me that won't leave my spirit.

Speaking of spirit and spiritual needs, since I've been back home I've been really involved in my church. That was something that I was lacking while living on the East Coast especially my life in CT. Being home, I'm quite active in my church. I sing in the choir, I'm part of the Prayer Ministry (the Prayer Posse) and unless I'm out of town, I'm in church EVERY Sunday and at rehearsal every Friday. Outside of what I do Friday and Sunday, I'm lacking in the spiritual connection department. I don't pray every day but I'm working on it, I don't read my Bible often but I'm working on it. I don't know why it's not part of my everyday life but I want it to be. There are people who have been doing it for years and years and it's second nature to them. In terms of my own spirituality, I'm relatively young, I'm still growing. I want a good, strong, solid relationship with the Lord and I am trying to be His humble servant, but it's hard with the temptations of the world make it a challenge.

My emotional needs - that's tricky. I am such an emotional person. I feel everything. I don't know how or why this is the case but I am. I need to be loved, cared for, listened to, trusted, I want to be everything that a woman is. There is so much that can be done through emotions. That's how you say what you need to say without saying anything at all. There is so much through emotion and if you understand that you can truly understand me.

Where do you go to get those needs met?

For my material needs, you can find me at the MAC store on Fourth Street. I have more MAC than the law should allow...that's another blog for another time.

My spiritual needs, I'm at church and trying to be better in prayer.

For my emotional needs, no one is really around to fill that void. I'll have moments when I want to talk to someone and I'll call three people in less than a minute. By the time I make the fourth phone call and I am on the phone, in a conversation, someone will call me back. When I tell them that I'm on the phone, they're like "damn, you just called me". When I have moments, I move quick. If you aren't available, I move on to the next person. There are times when I think that I'm ready to be in a relationship but I believe that some of the emotional challenges that I have maybe a turn off for some guys. It's not something that I hide, I'm pretty upfront about it. At the same time, I kinda understand it and am coming to grips with it. I do feel alone at times and most times feel like I don't have anyone to really reach out to. I try but most of the friendships and the relationships that I have, have reached their potential and there isn't anything that I can do about that, except take it for what it is and just let it go (read the blog).

Who provides support to you? Who can you call on in a moment of crisis?

More times than not, I feel pretty alone. There are times when I reach out to those in my community, work or church. Mostly the elders because they have more wisdom than I could ever imagine. There are some friends who have wisdom and advice, but more times than not I reach out to people, but it doesn't usually help.

Who do you look to in order to share the truth of your life?

No one really knows the TRUTH about me. Maybe because I'm in denial about my truth, maybe I'm afraid of my truth. But I've always heard keep some secrets. My complete truth - no one knows. And to me, that's fair. No one knows the complete truth about me and I don't know the complete truth about anyone.

Describe your emotional stability. Are you at your tipping point? Why?

I'm not completely emotionally stable right now. I've dealt with some trauma recently and haven't really had the time or the outlet to really deal with them. I've gotten by, but the reality is - no I'm not completely stable right now.

What does it take you to trust?

It takes so much for me to trust. I've been hurt and disappointed by so many things and so many people In addition to that hurt and disappointment, I've dealt with pain. The pain is what I associate with trust. I don't know why. Time is what it takes me to trust but at the same time, I'm not a great judge of character and that gets me in a lot of trouble.

When have you chosen a life of less?

I don't think I've chosen a life of less. I just haven tapped into my potential. I think I'm afraid of my potential.

What are you most fearful of in your life?

I'm afraid of my potential. I'm also afraid of losing those close to me but I also understand that's part of the circle of life. I'm fearful of rejection. I know that it happens but I don't like it and I'm kinda afraid of it.

Are you bitter? What are the circumstances?

I don't think so. I've been jaded at times and may be jaded still but I don't think bitter is a word to describe me. Frustrated and disappointed are better words that would describe me. Frustrated and disappointed with the state of my family, the state of my health...frustrated and disappointed with alot. But bitter, no.

How comfortable are you with yourself?

I've gotten better with it. I'm pretty accepting of myself, flaws and all while still understanding that there's room for improvement. I have my days where I don't feel beautiful or even cute, but I'm sure everyone has them. Whether or not they're going to own up to it is something else.

How do you express yourself and your needs? How can you improve? times I'm passive/aggressive. Other times I'm very direct. The problem is that I don't know when to be what. The best way to improve on that is just taking more time when trying to express myself and my needs. What I want, my needs, they're important and it's okay that I take my time and make myself clear.

What values are important to you? How do you incorporate them in your life?

Monogamy is important to me (given the state of my personal life, I think it's interesting that I pick that one first). Respect and responsibility, honor and love, trust, honesty. These are values that are pretty important to me. The same things that I value are what I live by. Sometimes I fall short, but more days than not, I give it my best effort. Self expression and self awareness are important to me too.

I think there was a lot of truth to that chapter (you gotta read the book). I'm not on Life Support. I have the disease to please and I may be running a fever. But that's what this time is about, my personal, spiritual checkup. Now that I know what's going on or not going on, I can know how to deal with it and move on. (Let it go....I'm on my way)

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