I’m much later in putting my New Year’s intention down in print than I usually am, but that doesn’t mean I haven’t been thinking a lot about it for the last few weeks. For whatever reason, this year’s intention was a little harder to articulate than previous years have been (hey, some years are like that), but here’s what I’ve come up with so far: in 2014 I discovered that trust breeds trust, so in 2015 it is my intention to keep the trust cycle going by...trusting more. What do I mean by that? Well, I’m still feeling like I may have to talk around the concept a bit before it completely crystallizes, but let me have a go at it.
So as background, let me say that the last few years have been an interesting journey through identity work and personal growth (yeah yeah, I’m in my 40’s, and this is not unusual, I realize). One of the big issues I’ve been grappling with during this phase of the journey is trust. (Yes, I have trust issues. How frightfully pedestrian of me, right?) Precisely why I have trust issues and under what circumstances they flare up and get triggered is a complex and tangled story that I’ve spent lots of time picking apart with my therapist and won’t go into here, but suffice to say that sometimes, I have a hard time believing that things will work out without great effort and a certain amount of defensive contingency planning on my part. Much as I *say* I want to be the kind of person who lives in the moment and believes that things generally work out favorably in the end, and often preach the efficacy of this approach in my advice to others, I often have a hard time actually doing that. (Oh well, you know they say you teach what you most need to learn...) I get scared, I get anxious, I get triggered, and I go right back to “no one else will notice there’s a need here, so I’d better take care of it myself, and well ahead of time, too, just to make sure it doesn’t fall through the cracks.” I juggle faster and add more balls and fancy footwork, and for a while I feel like a super circus queen...until inevitably something gets missed or tripped over and everything overwhelms and falls apart. But I have only myself to blame, which is really uncomfortable, so I try blaming other people for not rescuing me, but then that isn’t very comfortable either, so I resolve to not even involve other people next time, and just try a little harder to do everything better by myself. (Whew. I’m a little freaked out just typing all that.)
Now, I’ve been working on all this stuff, as I said, and one of the things that happened towards the end of 2014 is that life circumstances were such that I got super overwhelmed by all the Things To Do (admittedly, that’s the passive voice...in many ways I knowingly and willingly set myself up for much of that overwhelm, it didn’t just happen out of nowhere). Travel, high school applications, social and family obligations, Dickens Fair, Josh starting graduate school, kid care, housework, holiday hoo-ha...there was so much going on that I just couldn’t juggle it all myself in the pro-active ways I was used to. I had to drop some Things, and give some of the Things to Josh or other people, and just trust that it would all somehow work out ok. And you know what? It did work out ok. It totally did. Sometimes just barely, and sometimes at the last possible moment or not in the way I thought it would, but overall: Things worked out ok. And in acknowledging that fact, I found myself feeling more confident, and yes, more trusting, about the possibility that this whole “trusting that other people will help do the Things and that Things will work out ok” process might be repeatable. And get easier each time. It was kind of exciting, and made me want to trust some more.