Burning the Mask of Self-Disdain


October 14, 2018, Prescott-

I have revealed much of myself, recently, to a person who, to the best of my intuition, wishes the best for me, albeit through instilling a very high standard of discipline in our interactions.  What this soul doesn’t know is that, for much of my life, the very same words, angry reactions to some deeply ingrained behaviours (which I, admittedly, need to, and have a specific plan to, root out) and putdowns which I hear now, have been used by far less well-meaning people, earlier in my life.

What I have been doing, and what I need to accelerate doing now, is to destroy the self-loathing that also was deeply ingrained on me, by the words and actions of certain people in my youth, and throughout my career in education.

Everyone has their share of bullies, and many turn around and bully others. “Hurting people hurt people”.  It gets us nowhere.  So, part of burning my mask of self-loathing will involve keeping a distance from those who view me as either a threat to their well-being (out of common courtesy) or as beneath their contempt (out of self-preservation). I have learned, through the period of caretaking for Penny and in the years since, that I am a far better person than ANY of my detractors, including those who have recently come into my life, can remotely imagine.  While I will strive to make specific changes in my living space, according to the better of the messages I have been getting, I will not abase myself again, ever.  Life and love go on.

NEXT:  The Mask of Overactivity


The Road to 65, Mile 166: Comfort Zones


May 13, 2015, Prescott- I was wakened this morning by a job call for a middle school science classroom.  Normally, I turn down anything where I would be figuring the material out, as I went along.  Not knowing math and science cold has been a deterrent, in such posts.  This morning’s job description was mainly caretaking, while the students read and answered questions about the text, so I took the job, and will have four days, at least, this week, plus two days next week, to end the academic year.

I’ve thought alot about comfort zones, of late.  Something has removed anxieties that I used to feel about moving into territory from which I have shied away, in the past.  The academic scene is an example.  Yesterday, I worked a math class, albeit at fifth grade level.  I was at least as smart as the fifth graders.

On the trail, I used to not do handholds up rock faces.  On Sunday, I din’t give it a second thought, going up the cliff. I don’t think I will take on rock-climbing, mind you, but the moderately difficult hand over hand is no longer a barrier.

Facing myself, when I ponder what, exactly, I am doing that is of value, is a periodic challenge.  Today, I just looked in the mirror, after actually getting along with a person with whom I’ve had sharp differences in the past, and decided it’s worth every minute, of each day, to walk up to a challenge and face it.  There is nothing that says I am not at least as worthwhile, not at least as capable, of stretching the comfort zone.