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Identity 101

Submitted by GingerBlackstone on May 6, 2010 – 7:32 pmComments

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by terence-fly

I have a very bad habit.

I find identity in what I do.  Sounds pretty normal, doesn’t it? And it is, normal.  Healthy? Not so much. 

Finding meaning in what we do is essential. I find meaning in writing and in my roles as a wife, best friend, sister, daughter, and grandaughter.  Meaning awakens in my heart when I see the wind tossing the leaves on a tree or a full, yellow moon. Meaning lights our days, fills us with hope and abundance. 

Idenity, however, should draw very little from our actions and experiences.  The second I say, “I am a writer,” I lose the freedom not to be one. When that is all I am, and I am suddenly unable to write, my entire identity flushes down the toilet. Existential crisis ensues.  Fear fills the time that could be spent living and being, two activities which benefit those close to me and the world at large far more than a cut and dry functionality.

What I am learning, through the Choister-ific few years I have had so far, switching careers, relationships, lifestyles, and elaborate plans, is that I cannot cling to what I do from day to day.  It is a dress I put on, not the true me. What I chose to do only pans out when it comes from a deep, joyful self-knowledge, beyond titles, a self that grows but does not change in essence no matter what plans I make, plays I complete, or articles I publish.  This essence cares less whether I go to yoga teacher training than how good a friend I am after a stressful day.

What I’m meant to be doing right now is just this, and wherever I am meant to go, I’ll go, eventually.  Not the writer, not the performer, not the wife, sister, daughter, friend, or granddaughter.  Just me. And the plans I make along the way, no longer crushed by the weight of my ego, will be a heck of a lot more fun!

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