15 February, 2010
the feeling is there all the time. owing. the checks and balances of give and take. have i said thank you enough? do they know how grateful i am? have i offered back, in equal measure, what i have received? it is a constricted feeling attached to receiving that sometimes darkens the whole exchange. it comes from inside. and it is getting ready to die.
i know that i am not alone in this. i hear it often, especially from mothers. that there is an unspoken construct that shadows their walk in the world; one that dictates that for everything good that happens, something good is owed in return. that for every "break", indulgence, gifted moment of solitude, we are left with something to "make-up" for. and so limits are set. we impose self inflicted restrictions on how much is too much to take for ourselves: how many nights away, how much money spent (or earned), how good we are allowed to feel. for me, it used to bleed into just about any aspect of self-care; to any time or resources i took just for myself. whatever it was, the relaxation or restoration i received in the moment was almost immediately negated by the feeling of debt i was left with.
while there is much less of it in my psyche now, this feeling still persists at a very base level. and i know it comes down to those bottom-dwelling fundamental ideas i have about worth. and shame. and greed. and the kinds of ugly that we don't like to show one another. it has also become blazingly apparent that this is one of those barricade sorts of doorways that is really ready to be busted down. because it stands in the way of freely experiencing pleasure, of valuing my own contributions, and of my worthiness itself.
i'm pretty sure that there really isn't a master spreadsheet up in the heavens keeping track of all that flows. and even if there was, my guess is that it is all balanced perfectly and that it is up to us to trust it. so that's the ideal i'm leaning toward. and i'm thinking that somewhere in this faith is where truly free abundance is found.