“Hurry up so I can leave you,” that is what this past moon cycle has been about. The pressure had been building through the new moon cycle and reached it’s tipping point for me Sunday morning, just a day before the full moon.
I like Sunday mornings. I stay in bed longer with my half-a-cup of coffee and consider the personal aspects of my life in a wide variety of ways, one that includes social media. This past Sunday morning I opened a response to a post I posted on the neighborhood network. I had asked if anyone knew of a local group concerned with Fluoride in the public water. Folks responded with, what I at first dismissed as, “well intended” messages concerning my misunderstanding about the benefits of Fluoride. I felt a sense of frustration, but reasoned these people meant well, even though it made me feel a tad queasy at the center of my heart.
I was afraid. I was afraid that they were judging me. “It is okay,” I assured myself, “Everyone has the right to their opinion- including me.” I took a deep breath and attempted to clear some of that fear off my chest. “They are only trying to be helpful,” I told myself, but still I was irritated. The irritated part of me pushed forward, “Yes, but why all the help around something I didn’t ask? I didn’t ask to be told what to think. I asked if anyone knew of an organized group for a specific concern.” The reasonable side of me counter, “Yes, but not everyone sees things your way.” “Exactly!” The irritated part of myself said, “And thus my inquiry to discover like minded people!” I took another deep breath, closed my eyes, and on the out breath attempted to balance the squabble brooding within my system. And then, there it was. Right there, in an easy to read Arial font, for all my neighbors and 14 nearby neighborhoods to see. Boldly, in black and white and on an illuminated screen.
“The Fluoride issue has been discussed thoroughly for decades among well educated and informed experts. Where have you been? If you are afraid of Fluoride and don’t believe in science, then go ahead and filter it out. But don’t bust the societal contract we have to protect our public health, particularly of those most vulnerable.”
Ouch! No more room for discussion for a fellow human who has been a lifetime resident of planet Earth? Does my inquiry some how imply that I am uneducated? And when does the level of my education dictate my right to ask a question of my neighbors? Is it a sign of being uninformed to hold a greater interest that includes a diverse collection of experts? Had my question exposed me as some reckless bore who was about to capsize the stability of public health? Oh, yeah! He found my vulnerability. That reptilian-brain fear, that if I am different from you, it is cause for quite the commotion. The likes of “Off with her head,” or “You! Out of the cave. NOW!” Out on my ear with only a rock to defend myself against the packs of Sabre-tooth Tigers.
This is an old fear. It runs through the bloodlines of humanity. I sat in my Sunday morning bed and thought about the past times when people got up-close and personal, looked me over like I was a melon at the market, and then walked away. That kind of judgement, makes it “hard to be green,” as Kermit the Frog would say. It is hard to feel balanced in who your are under such cursory evaluation.
I sat in bed and thought about the difference between, who I am, and who I am suppose to be. Then I thought, who do I want to be? Do I want to be what my fellow neighbor suggests that I am not? Am I what he suggests I am? Or, am I entirely something else? Then again, I thought, does it even matter if I know who I am? Is it even really possible to answer the question of, who am I, since I am always evolving? I was beginning to feel more grounded. Sorting through myself and the distortions of myself was taking a weight off my heart.
My conclusion? What matters more is that I know how I want to behave. Actions may speak louder than words. What I do will vibrate with a greater resonance through the universe, then what I say I am, or am not. The question of “who am I,” is always only answered by the question of “how do I behave.”
Behave the way you want to behave. Trust that what you want is good and wholesome. Trust that what you want is inspired by wisdom and not compelled by fear. Of course, I know that you want to know what I did. Well, I private messaged my fearful neighbor. I introduced myself as a human living with curiosity and an awareness of the organic nature of things. I told him I resided on the third planet from the Sun. I reminded him of my original question, explained that I asked it because I knew other cities had such groups, and then I told him that I was taken aback that my inquiry prompted such a publicly unkind response.
I can’t say that my response was “right.” I can say that it was inspired by my wisdom and not motivated by my fear. I can say that I don’t feel vindicated or afraid now. I feel normal now. I feel whole. I can say, that it just is okay to be me.
Tami Boehle-Satterfield is a psychotherapist who practices dynamic energy psychology therapies that include hypnosis for anxiety. You can learn more about her and her philosophy at attentiontoliving.com