This is a weighted question for me. I would say, overall, I am good at being honest with myself, but that has a flip side. I am very self-aware, which is mainly a good thing, but without some discernment it is easy to fall into the trap of becoming too intimate with my faults. Seeing and learning from my faults is a good thing. Judging and criticising them is not. In fact, when I criticise myself I have succumed to the past conditioning which created an image of myself as worthless and a failure. The thoughts quickly turn into the familiar narrative of how it’s pointless trying because I’m so useless and before I know it I’m back there again – hurting.
But I can see it. And this is my gift.
As a child, I saw how people’s minds and emotions worked. I wrote stories about them. I had not developed a full self image at that point. I was in touch with my intuition. I wrote to God and made characters express the feelings that I was unable to. I didn’t think about or analyse anything, it just flowed from me like a river from Source. It was only after I was forced to change schools at age ten that it all went wrong. And of course, age ten is pretty pivotal in terms of ego development. I’m talking here of healthy ego or personality development, when we learn who we are in the world, what we like, what we want.
I started the new school a shell of the child I had been previously. I was scared due to what was happening at home and school was no longer a refuge. I was socially anxious and had been removed from everyone I knew. The kids didn’t know what to make of me. In typical kid-style, they took the mickey. A year later I started secondary school, still friendless. The bullying started. I had always been an introvert but now I was completely withdrawn and scared of people. So rather than developing a healthy personality, I saw myself as an idiot who nobody liked.
I have already written about the sadness around my writing when I started university so I won’t repeat it again. Suffice to say, I suffered a lot through school but writing became an outlet for my emotions and something I considered myself to be good at, until I lost faith in that too. But now, as an adult in my forties, I see and understand that writing was not something that belonged to me; instead it flowed from me, and it’s not something that can be lost, just like the essence of who I was as a child cannot be lost. In a way I have become full circle; I am integrating what the child in me knew with the maturity of age and the challenges I have faced, and realising that what I believed about myself at school was an illusion.
Self-awareness is a gift. Writing is my offering. It is my joy, my passion, and I still like to believe I am ‘good’ at it because that is something that matters to me. In writing, I understand my story, discern my faults, see where I am caught. In writing, I allow the beauty of Divine love to channel through me, remind me I am okay as I am. There is a balance. There is always a balance.