My ‘River’

I’ve been reading and re-reading the latest posts on the WEL-Systems® site and now so much is moving in me.

Cathy Saunders wrote: Creating experiences where another invalidates my being  AND The illusion I bought into so many years ago, and yet, I never REALLY bought into it.  AND the patterns of destruction I have been so comfortable dancing with. AND What the outcomes have been is a life of lack of scarcity, of being at the mercy of another’s choices. The epitome of external referencing.

As I read her post “The Residue of My Tsunami”,  the image that kept coming up for me was of punishment.  What has been moving is the knowledge that I have lived my life as my own judge, jury, and executioner.  That I have kept punishing myself for what I said and done – for the person I presented to the world.  AND that I have kept punishing myself for the person I have kept hidden.  That’s the most insidious punishment.  Inside me, I’ve punished myself because the person I AM did not fit in to the social expectations of the world in which I have lived while, at the same time, I have punished myself for being untrue to myself.  I’ve got myself coming and going.  I’ve been damned if I do and damned if I don’t.

I’ve been living experiences, replicating experiences really, which have been so untrue to who I AM.  I’ve tried to be acceptable, to adapt so that I can fit in to the boxes of worker, sister, friend, woman.  I have moved through each day like an awake somnambulist – sleep walking while not asleep.  Yet, even as I tried to fit into the box of convention and the constructs of the world in which I’ve lived, I was never really able to do that.  It’s always been a struggle and a battle with myself and circumstance AND it has never been comfortable.  [Now why would I have thought that it should be been comfortable?  Since when is any battle ‘comfortable’?]

And as I’ve read these posts, I been reminded that I once observed to a counsellor I was seeing that, to me, life was a struggle.  No matter that he asked me where it was written that life should be a struggle.  No matter.  I just know that, while I’d seen the fallacy of that on an intellectual level, I continued to live my life still believing that, for me if for no one else, life was intended to be a struggle. I know now that I’ve expended so much energy managing my life that I have forgotten to live my life.

Not unusual that, as I’ve been writing this, the words of one of my favourite songs have been resonating in my mind.  The song is ‘The River’.  The first verse has been me for most of my life – struggling to keep going forward in the ‘right direction’ while constantly paying attention to the past so as to avoid past mistakes.  Each day has been ‘a constant battle just to stay between the shores’.  The second verse is my life now and ever forward.  I am no longer willing to ‘sit upon the shoreline and say [I’m] satisfied’.  I am no longer willing to put things off until tomorrow or until they are convenient or safe or acceptable.  I do ‘choose to chance the rapids and dare to dance the tide’.  I do so love the image that evokes in me.  Like an explorer drawn to the unknown, I ‘will sail my vessel’ [ME] and move forward into my unknown – into who I am not only re-claiming but also who I am becoming.


About Authentic Vibrations

My life is about learning and personal growth. I was an educator in the public secondary system for over 33 years. I now work with women, individually and in small groups, using words and music, art and language to help them explore their individaul sense of self in ways with are authentically meaningful for each of them. I also facilitate discussions with educators at all stages of their involvement in the teaching profession to help each of us explore the meaning, value and potential of learning and teaching. It is my belief that, in working individually and in collective, we have the power to transform and evolve. In the power of the collectives which we create together is the power to create culture. As a musician, I believe that the arts have the power to change lives. Certification: CODE Model™ Coach WEL-Systems® Institute Affiliate Education: Ed. D (c) (Applied Psychology – Focus on Teaching) University of Toronto M. Ed (Curriculum Development and Design) Queen’s University (1992) B. Ed (Music, English, Elementary Education) University of Toronto (1976) Mus. Bac. (Music Education) University of Toronto (1975) RCM Grade 4 Harmony, Grade 4 History, Grade 9 Voice, Grade 10 Piano Awards: Life Membership, Ontario Secondary School Teacher’s Federation (2009)
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One Response to My ‘River’

  1. Pingback: My ‘River’ | Engage WEL-Systems

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