Tuesday, August 28, 2012

All Aboard the Ridiculous Express

So we all have our process of dealing with things, especially truly emotional things.

When I’m upset and particularly emotional, most people respond by trying to calm me down, talk rational, present both sides. Don’t bother. Just let me go, let me get it out, let me cry, let me rant, let me get to the point where I’m so unreasonable and absurd that even I have to laugh. Let me get to that sacred place I call Ridiculous.

Don’t worry, it doesn’t take me long, especially if people leave me alone and let me take the express bus to Ridiculoustown. Without any well-meaning obstacles, it generally takes just minutes. Though, sometimes a situation is so big I have to take a few return trips, but again these don’t take long, so just sit back and watch the show, people. Seriously, I'm getting really good at this...blink and you might miss it.

Thankfully, I don’t have to take these trips very often. I can handle most things. I only get this way when I’m hurt by someone or am put in a situation I which I am REALLY uncomfortable—when I feel backed in a corner and don’t know what else to do. My answer to the fight or flight response, turns out to be a freak out! Having these trips is sometimes the only thing that allows me to breathe. I know this sounds incredibly immature and you’re envisioning a two-year old at the grocery store who was told they couldn’t have candy. This is not what it looks like, but I’ve realized that this is about my lower-self, inner child expressing herself and me outwardly trying to express her needs and fears. The first time I recall taking this journey was when I first graduated college and moved to Manhattan I found myself a little cash poor with a hefty rent payment and little left over. When I realized my former roommate cashed my check for the electric bill, kept the money and didn’t pay the bill, I found myself utterly devastated. Not only did I feel the betrayal of someone I lived with for two years who was willing throw out a friendship for $200, but I was totally stressed about having to come up with another $200 to pay the bill that I just didn’t have. When my roommates tried to calm me down and offered to get pizza for dinner, I cried out, “I’ll never buy pizza again.” To which even I realized how silly that was. Even I had to laugh at how ridiculous the statement was. That, my friends, was the first time I was aware I was at Ridiculous.

I also realize that as I do my spiritual work and developing a relationship with my lower self, the trips to Ridiculous have changed too. They have grown and they have matured. Not only have the trips become shorter, but they are more controlled and socially acceptable. I can now go to Ridiculous at work and not ruin my professional Corporate Witch image.

Previously, in places like work, I would just shut off my feeling and things would fester until I quit and just got a new job rather than dealing with issues that might have helped me change.

Recently, I was put into a conflict situation. I HATE conflict. One of the people in the situation LOVES conflict. You can see how this would make me uneasy and cause my lower-self to freak out. So I just refused to engage. Nope, not going. I have something better to do, here is my notes, I’m not showing up! Oh and I’m going to email you to say this because that’s even safer. Click Send. Maria feels so much better. Maria breathes. Maria recognizes that sending the email was the grown-up version of getting to ridiculous. Really, I’m gonna stomp my feet and declare, “I’m not going?” 

Apparently, yes. And that action provided me with the space to gain clarity. I saw that by not standing up and being part of the conversation I not was standing up for myself, my team, my peers, and what I thought was right. I saw that there would only be more conflict later. So, I sucked it up and put on the big girl panties and rearranged my schedule. I had the conversation. I wasn’t happy with the outcome. However, afterward, I had more clarity into the position and motivations of the others involved.  I made a clear, informed decision--a decision with which both me and my lower self can live.

1 comment:

  1. I appreciate this metaphor/coping mechanism/crazy woman tool. Rock on.