Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Day 17: the most whispy vulnerability
Ay-ya. I didn't realize how many times I have negative feelings about other people until I tried noticing my projections/judgments this morning while walking my son to school. It's a five (or less) minute walk and I had negative feelings about no less than 3 people on the way there and back (probably more if I was even more honest and mindful). god. I thought I was a pretty open, compassionate person. Anyhow, the first one was someone who often walks past me with her nose in the air slightly (or so I see). I tripped over the dog's leash while I was walking towards her and she looked even colder than usual - I attribute it to my gracelessness (vulnerability). Second I saw my neighbour who is alternately friendly or cold depending on the day (I think I'm just not smooth enough for her, and she doesn't respect me - she likes my ex better to boot). Third, I say good morning to a nanny I've seen be cruel to one of her very young charges, feeling slighly guilty about how much I dislike her because of it. I also hope my being friendly might subtly help make her kinder to the children. When I sat tonight looking at what they had in common, I realized it was coldness in the face of vulnerability. This comes up again and again for me. I keep seeing people who I feel don't like me because I appear too vulnerable I think. Interesting. I thought this was just a fact of life. Wondering about it as a projection, I can definitely see how I can be/have been cold in the face of vulnerability. Mainly to myself (though not entirely). I can feel it as soon as I tune into where the feeling might be in my body. It is a hardness I developed to keep on going when things were tough as a child. I mistake it for strength and just what I have to do. I feel guilty somewhat when I'm not cold, as if I'm being too soft on myself, or others, and it feels less safe to not feel cold. I feel more vulnerable. Of course this all makes sense, but, people, I was not even aware of it! Not to this extent anyhow. The last thing I want to be is cold. I understand now that this is why my aim for my life's work is to become sensitive enough to see and take care of people in their most vulnerable states. Without knowing entirely why, a part of me has been leading myself right where I need and want to be. I want to counteract this coldness/hardness skill I've developed. I have the idea that I would eventually like to work with the dying because of the vulnerability (and meaningfulness) inherent in it. I want to be able to cradle, with calm and love, the most whispy vulnerability that exists.