I'm tired as I write this, so I apologise if I ramble.
I don't know if what I'm speaking about is shamanic in nature, or just bits I've picked up and lumped into this post, but I've found lately a deep sense of power within myself. At the same time, there's also a deep sense of wobbliness within me too. I want to try to explore that a little.
When I look at young kids, their sense of power within themselves is rather strong, especially if it's been allowed to develop. So young kids who dress themselves, wear whatever feels most comfortable for them regardless of colour, trends, where they're going or what they're doing, sometimes even without considering the weather. They have a power of creation. A power of self. And it's not yet tainted by expectation.
Somewhere along the way, that sense of self is changed to a sense of style. Kids begin to wear what's trending, what's suitable, what's required. It's exacerbated by uniforms that may be required at school or sport or other activities. The sense of self is lost, and you conform (to some degree or other).
This doesn't just occur with dress sense. It occurs in so many aspects of our life (or my life anyway).
I have places where I haven't really conformed at all, and places where I have.
I have scars, some big and some small, from where my sense of self was ridiculed or squished into a box, or somehow made to feel lesser.
Reflecting on this, I can see the damage seemingly innocuous comments made. Damage that still persists. A still raw wound that gets the scab knocked off if someone says something similar now. I'm plunged back to the little me and the hurt I felt when I realised how far away from 'normality' I was.
But I also see how often I can utter to a child similar words to what was said to me. Why am I perpetuating this hurt? Why am I continuing the pain that I'm suffering? Why can't I rejoice in uniqueness and individuality and encourage it?
I think we've become 'indoctrinated' (for want of a better word) to believe that we're assisting people by helping them fit into the 'norm'. In actually fact, I think we need to be encouraging youth to break from the norm.
In some ways, I think this is happening in each successive generation but I'm not sure it's a mindful decision or more a gut-instinct or kick-back approach.
I don't have kids, so I have the time and space when around them to observe, think, and cross correlate what I see with what I experienced. I also have some space to reflect and churn all these thoughts around to see how they fit (or don't fit).
So, today I'm wondering about how I can honour the power within myself. How can I comfort the little girl in me who is hurt by others' comments, criticisms, and expectations? How can I look at the wounds and allow them to properly heal and not just scab over in temporary healing that will be knocked open again? How can I regain my power and be a non-conformist who is still able to function in this society and the world?
I don't have answers but I needed to get the thoughts out of my head so I was free to explore them a bit deeper. Blogging tends to allow me to clear this path and work a bit further on an issue. So here's to more thoughts about non-conforming!
Also, while I'm thinking about this, I've been reading Women Who Run With Wolves by Dr Clarissa Pinkola Estés and in a chapter I just finished, she mentioned that often a sexual exploration/release is a way to open up further and develop more (she was talking about laughing and giggling at 'smutty' things and how women often giggle and release problems when they can be crude and honest)...as I read that, I wondered if that is what my erotic writing allowed. I did all that exploration of fetishes, etc way back, and began writing all sorts of things on this blog that allowed me to open and explore further. I think it's quite wonderful that I allowed that part of me to extend and explore while I still struggled with the conforming and 'being proper' other part of myself. However, it is all me - the conforming and the non-conforming parts.