Posted by: Marie | March 9, 2010

(265) Finding middle ground

Post #265
[Private journal entry written on Friday, November 27, 2009]

I’m on Thanksgiving break . . . a four-day weekend . . .

I’m having trouble getting out of bed and getting on with my “to do” list even though I’m excited about the new studio. Why? Why can’t I just be happy and excited and get my butt out of bed and go make good things happen?????

I finally figured out a way to explain this experience. It’s like I’m in a small, dark, windowless room with a cement floor. I keep trying to open the door to get out of the room and into a “normal” existence (joy, peace, safety, companionship). I know what I’m “supposed to do” to get out (work hard, be nice, be honest, etc.), and I know I am smart enough – and I’m capable of doing it.

Ali Mountain by Martin Chen

When I do what I need to do, instead of getting good results, I get discouraging results. Despite my best efforts, I seem to always being going backward in my progress.

When I put my hand on the doorknob and try to open the door and get to joy, I get electrocuted and thrown back onto the floor, in a heap.

I re-strategize, then try again – I get electrocuted again.

I try to break down the door without touching the handle – and I break my arm.

I try to remove the hinges, but they electrocute me as well.

Nothing works.

After a lifetime of trying, I’m finding it is less painful to stay a heap on the floor than to build up my hope enough to be willing to try getting out again . . . the disappointment is so painful.

It sucks being curled up on the cement floor, but it is less painful than being electrocuted. I’ve pretty much run out of hope that it will ever be different.

I constantly swing between frantically trying to get organized, getting it all pulled together, creating a plan of action . . . and then, when I start to put that plan into action, I freeze up in fear of being electrocuted. I stay frozen until my plan of action becomes outdated . . . then, I go back into the “getting organized” side of the swing.

With each swing, the voice of fear whispers in my ear, “It won’t be any better this time, why bother?”

The good news is that I’m learning to allow the swinging pendulum to swing peacefully . . . I can almost detachedly observe when I’m in one of the two extremes. In those times, I just sit back and wait it out. Then, when the pendulum is towards the middle of the swing, I can actually be productive.

It’s not smooth progress, but it is progress. And, I feel less like killing myself during the extreme parts of the swinging . . . most of the time I know I’ll get through it.

Today, the voice of fear is talking to me non-stop – this may be one of those days I have to sit back and wait.


  1. It sounds like you’ve made big changes to be able to go with the swings and have them not so bad at the extremes.

    Looking forward to hearing how this keeps unfolding.

  2. Hi, Evan –

    I think it comes with the acceptance of “this is what is today” as opposed to klinging to “what I wish it were”.

    Thanks for the encouragement!

    – Marie

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