Coming Out of the Closet

Each of us, as we grew up, probably had a place – whether real or imaginary – to which we went when we felt scared or threatened or terrified – somewhere we felt protected and safe. And for some of us, there was a very real place to which we were banished if we misbehaved in any way and to any degree.  Did anyone ever say to you, à la W. C. Fields, “Go away kid. You bother me.”?  Were you ever sent to your room?

In my childhood home, the place to which I was sent was the dark and stuffy closet built into the wall under the stairs leading up to the second floor of the house. Oh, there was a bare light bulb hanging from the ceiling and I was too small to reach it to turn the light on.  And so, if my presence bothered my father, I would be exiled to this tiny, dank, stultifying, and terrifying place.  I rarely knew what I had done to merit such punishment.  I rarely knew how long my sentence was to be.  I worried that I would be forgotten and not let out.  I couldn’t let myself out or I’d face more punishment.

I remember crying against the sentence pronounced on me, promising that I would be good only, “Please don’t make me sit in the closet!” I remember sitting huddled against the back wall of the closet crying because I was so scared.  I remember feeling that I couldn’t breathe. I remember feeling as if the walls were closing in on me so the space was getting tighter.  Is it any wonder that total unremitting darkness scared me, that I felt edgy in small spaces, and that noise, even from the television playing two rooms away helped me feel calm?

And today, March 20, 2017, I own that that was how I felt. I own that the strategies I put in place as a child in order to survive in the closet have been running my life and I’m no longer a child.  I own that I have tried to outrun my fear; that I’ve told myself, à la Leonard’s mother, “Suck it up, sissy pants!”; that I’ve tried to be rational and ‘adult’; that I’ve lived in my head; that I’ve told myself that all I survived as a child didn’t matter anymore yet it was still there.

Today, March 20, 2017, I own that I have come out of the closet. I own that I no longer choose to go there.  I own that how I feel is right and true for me. I own that the choices I make are right and true for me.  I own that I am a being of light.  I own that how I choose to live in each breath is a reflection of the absolute essence of who I know mySelf to be.  I own that I no longer feel anticipation coupled with fear.  I own that I feel anticipation and excitement.

Can it get any better than that? Nope!  And most definitely, yup!

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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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