Friday, February 01, 2008

navel gazing

Disclaimer: Here I am, talking about myself.

Do you ever have flashes of insight into your character or temperment? You suddenly realize something about yourself that you have never noticed before and it makes you feel naked?

Last night I was thinking about me. How difficult it can be for me to see things in a decisive, clear-cut manner. Everything is fuzzed up. It is nearly impossible for me, for example, to come down decisively on political issues. I can always see both sides, depending on who I am talking to or what I am reading. I do not mean to say that I am easily swayed. I mean the opposite--I am not easily swayed in any particular direction. I sit firmly on the fence because I like my view from here. (I hope I am not a moral fence-sitter. I don't think so.) Whenever someone makes an argument one way, I am skeptical. And then my skepticism is confirmed when I hear arguments to the contrary.

This bothers me about myself, but not nearly as much as the following: I have difficulty feeling my own feelings. I can not rightfully say that I have never realized this, but I only discovered it a few months ago. Last night I had time to think more about it. I absorb other people's feelings to a degree that I am often unable to separate them from my own. I have had some evenings alone since J's been gone. I have filled up some of that time with media--books, computer, t.v. But some of the time I have unwound and discovered, voila! some of my own feelings. They do exist.

So my new discovery last night was that not only do I absorb other people's feelings and experience them instead of my own, but I also react to that experience. All of this works against me living my own life as myself.

This is a lot of blather and I can't even believe I am posting this. I suppose I hope that if I write it down, it will help me "fix" it somehow.

Someone told me once that I obviously had great discernment in knowing right from wrong, good from evil. I do sometimes feel that. At least, I try to actively pursue and embrace the good for myself and for my family, and likewise eschew evil. I also have very strong taste in what I like and what I don't like. No waffling there.

So why do I sometimes struggle to know what is true?


Karen ~ said...

You know, I always feel such a strong connection to you and this post solidifies part of the reason why that is. Your beginning notes on being such a strong fence-sitter is me to a "T". I have theories about why this is, perhaps we should get together and compare ideas!

Anonymous said...

I don't understand. What types of feelings have you discovered that you didn't know you had?

ave said...

that was me.

Gabriela said...

Hmmmmmm. I like it when I figure stuff out about myself. Unless it's bad stuff... but even I like that because then you can recognize it and it's easier to combat (if it's something you don't like)

I wrote a long comment on your last post and then Blogger went down right when I went to post it. Sorry. But I agree with you. I also hate freedom of speech as long as it's left-wing jargon, but if it's conservative then it's just offensive.

Sabrina said...

There is nothing to fix. There ARE goods and bads to both sides of many things, especially in the political world. My family is VERY opinionated about many things and I've always felt bad that the only emotion I could conjure up about things (political views especially) is apathy. I've come to think that maybe apathy can be a great thing to feel sometimes!

Calandria said...

Karen, we do need to get together. I would love to hang out and chat. Let's do it!

Ave, I guess I didn't mean to say that I suddenly discovered all of these feelings I'd never felt. I see that I wasn't clear. I don't think I can explain it briefly, so maybe I'll have to post again on it another time when I've thought about it more.

Gabriela, don't you hate it when Blogger does that? It's happened to me before. Thanks for reading and commenting.

Sabrina, my BYU alumni magazine scolds me about apathy and cynicism. It tells me to "get involved in the political process," "get informed," etc. I'm trying but it seems that the more I read about the issues, the less I know.