Notes from the Ledge

I was having a bad day the other day.  Feeling scared, depressed, and lonely…and then I got into an argument with my husband.   So, I bundled up in my long down-filled coat and headed down to the conservation area.  I walked fast and hard with tears streaming down my face, letting the cold air bite my skin.  I could not seem to stop crying.  There are days when it feels like we are all alone; as if no one cares about us; as if no one loves us;  as if no one understands us! 

I sat by the pond for awhile watching some mallards paddling around.  The sky all around me was robin egg blue.  The sun was shining.  The trees, bare and grey, contrasted sharply against the bright sky.  The field was gold with dead grass.  It was a beautiful day!   I found myself thinking that I would like to climb into the woods and find a place to hide out for a few days; a place to sleep in the woods; a place no one could find me.   And then it happened; I broke out laughing.  I found myself thinking, “Oh my God, I am becoming the character in Margaret Atwood’s novel, The Edible Woman; the character who finds herself hiding behind the couch staring at dust bunnies; the character who starts to believe that her food is alive and breathing on her plate; the character who can  no longer eat anything until she makes the decision that is needed.”

I laughed but found myself thinking that while that character could not eat, I can not seem to stop eating.  I eat when I am scared.  I eat when I am frustrated.  I eat when I am angry, bored, restless, anxious, depressed.  It is like I have been swallowing my feelings for years.  All of them.  Trying to keep them down; trying to keep them at bay.  What am I so afraid of?  I think I am afraid that I am unloveable and unlikeable.  I think that I have worked hard all of my life to earn love that was never given freely to me.  It feels like I had to become a good student, a good worker, a good writer, a good activist to prove that I was worthy.  Worthy of attention, caring, respect, liking, loving…  And now, that that has been taken away from me, I feel like I am nothing.  

So, there it is…out in the open.  The deep dark demon that has been lurking in the recesses of my mind; driving me to work hard; driving me to keep busy; driving me to eat.  So, now that my deepest, darkest feeling is out in the open … can I get out from behind the couch??

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About kp

I am a woman and a mother, a sister and a wife. I have called myself a socialist and a feminist, an environmentalist and an activist, a pagan and an atheist. But, at this stage in my life, none of these labels feel right. I am searching; trying to find an inner calm; trying to make peace with life's disappointments; trying to answer the big questions in my own small life.
This entry was posted in Healing & Compassion, Signs, God & Universe, Writing for your life and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Notes from the Ledge

  1. jazzminey says:

    I hope you do come out from behind that couch. You know I understand what you are saying. For me it is the closet. I always say on bad days that I’m going in the closet and shut the door. You just may be going through the dark night of your soul and when it’s over, and it will be over, you will be blessed with a new and greater awareness. I can see in your writing the dawning. Janice

    • kp says:

      Janice…I think, or at least I hope, that you are right. It feels like I am peeling away the layers; moving deeper into the dark in the hopes of coming out in the light with a fresh new skin. Thanks for the support!! And for understanding!! Kp

  2. Hi Kim,
    I’m sitting here sad, wondering why so many women struggle with self-loathing or at least self-not-good-enough. It seems like an epidemic to me and when we read each others’ writings, we recognize each other. We KNOW the feeling.
    But I was also thinking that only those of us who look deeply move along in the unfolding of who we are, and the acceptance of our shadow selves that so need to be loved by our higher selves. If we believe we’re not enough of something and don’t do the inner work, we’re stuck and it’s a very dark place to stop. But when we struggle, wonder, complain, ask, look, demand, see–we’re reshaping ourselves with, and into, wisdom and compassion. We aren’t perfect, but we’re perfectly made containers for love and life, as unique as snowflakes and as alike as raindrops falling into the ocean. It’s okay to BE who we are, most especially for us tender souls, so we can see our true selves. You are a lovely, caring woman who worries too much about doing much more than her share.
    I recommend standing in front of a mirror and repeating affirmations like, “Damn! I’m good,” and “I am SO perfectly me,” and, “I am a miracle!” and “Look out world! Here comes Kim!”
    Never forget who you are. :)
    Pam

    • kp says:

      Pam…both things are true…we can only evolve by going into the dark…and isn’t sad how much we are bullied by our own inner voices? Mine are as loud today as they have been in 20 years or more, but I am hoping that I can strip them of some of their power by bringing them out into the light. Thanks for understanding and for the “cuddle kick”!!

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