“The only thing worse than being blind is having sight but no vision.”

Helen Keller 

I felt like dancing in my house this morning so I found a Rock Station and started jumping around to Metallica, a ‘Heavy Thrash Metal’ band. I really missed out as a teenager! Surprisingly, I survived those awkward, angst filled years without Rock ‘n’ Roll. I stayed in the syrupy safe zone of Pop Music, singing along to The Monkeys and The Partridge Family. Remembering Gertrude Stein’s words that say ‘We are always the same age inside,’ I resurrected my teenage soul, and gave it A Whole Lotta Love!

Led Zeppelin vs The Monkeys-can you spot the difference? These are Video Clips from YouTube, so you can play them!

Contrasting the sound, lyrics and sensuality of Led Zeppelin versus The Monkeys, gave me some insight into the 2 extremes of teenage behaviour…sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll or Paul and Polly Perfect. A self-proclaimed nerd, I missed the entire Freedom of Speech Movement of the 60’s, along with the Counterculture Movement against middle class values of the ’70’s. Any veering towards a free thought in our house resulted in a calling in of the troops…I didn’t need the mace and guns of Kent State to tow the family line, we had Mom saying, “Just wait until your Father gets home”…this was not an idle threat.

My Theory on Why So Many Lack a Personal Vision

Children should progress from the total dependence of infancy into heathy independent thinking and feeling adults. Reactions from our parents to our tentative steps towards independence, create either confidence in our ability to be self-determining or shame. 99% of parents whoop it up at a child’s first step, a physical manifestation of independence, but smack that same child a year later when she/he says ‘NO’ or ‘MINE’ …a child’s first efforts at giving independent voice to their feelings. Such a swift and unexpected fall from grace. Throughout the ‘Wonderful Ones’ every smile, step and gesture is met with gushing parental pride…and then the dreaded ‘Terrible Twos’, when the miracle of free thought is so thoroughly unwelcome to parents. It would be the rare parent who proudly phoned Grandma at their child’s first utterance of ‘no!’ Why do we not see our children’s expressions of their wants, needs and desires as the first steps towards manifestation of a personally meaningful life…instead we reward children for being clone-like Mini Mes.

How Defiance During the 2s and Teens Creates a Life Vision

The inherent fire I possessed to define my wants, wishes and needs, separate from my parents’ wants, wishes and needs, was swiftly doused. I was expected to ‘be good’, which meant, do as I was instructed. This resulted in the ‘perfect child’ syndrome. I was voted Best All Around Student in Grade 8, but this award should have been called Most Compliant Student. It would have been NORMAL at 2 and 13 to break a few rules and tick off a few people! Years of making mistakes and learning from these choices would have been essential in establishing MY identity. In not doing this I only developed physically. I was able to physically leave the safety of my parental home, as I had been encouraged to develop a highly functioning body. I was a trained figure skater and swimmer. But I was absolutely incapable of making choices that reflected my own needs, wishes and desires. Naturally, when someone else’s needs, wishes and desires were presented to me, I did what I had always done…I carried out their dreams.

In never feeling free to define my “NO”, my “YES ” meant nothing to me … it had no integrity because it was never my yes…it belonged to my parents…then my friends…then my boyfriends…then my husbands.

ASPIRATIONS FOR WEEK 31 OF 52

CHANGING FROM BEING BLIND TO HAVING MY VISION (with men)

This entire post was triggered by my reaction to loosing weight. When 10 pounds had fallen off, I did the unexpected…I began eating…see previous post. Being thin does not solve problems for me, as I thought when I wrote that post…it causes more. When I am thin, even old and thin, I attract male attention. The beauty of being Zaftig(curvy, voluptuous-one ‘hilarious’ reader asked me to include a glossary of terms for my posts) is that men don’t notice me, so therefore want nothing from me! Throughout my life, this inability to define my needs, wants and desires, left me open to fulfilling the desires of the men I met. I was not conscious of this. If at the tender age of 2, I was discouraged from giving voice to my desires, but instead fulfilled those of my parents, of course I lost the ability to discern whose needs I was meeting. No wonder I am afraid to re-enter the dating world. 

Below are some of the times I have said YES when I really meant NO

1. At 19, I said ‘YES’ to my Austrian boyfriend’s marriage proposal. He was the chef at the Banff Springs Hotel where I worked. I said ‘NO’ by leaving the engagement ring on his table, with an explanatory letter, while he was at work. I then boarded a train, with my packed trunk and escaped back to Winnipeg. He tracked me down 20 years later in Austria. He brought my letter with him, words underlined in red, wanting to hear my explanation face to face.

2. At 20, I said ‘YES’ to my next boyfriend’s wish to co-habitate. I said ‘NO’ by moving back to my parents’ house, on a monthly basis. This continued for 5 years.

3. At 25, I said ‘YES’ to the marriage proposal from my 1st husband. I said ‘NO’ by divorcing in 4 1/2 years.

4. At 32, I said ‘YES’ to my 2nd husband’s marriage proposal. This time my body said ‘NO’ by becoming so ill I had to take a disability leave from my career as a teacher.

So for Week 31 of 52, I will practise saying ‘YES’ and ‘NO’ to men…Consciously alert to the feelings in my gut and heart, I will be true to myself and therefore to them!

My Desires are Worthy!

My Desires are Worthy!

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