(‘I Quit– Episode 3)
So I had quit everyday life, gone home and put up the do not disturb sign.
I had created a space for myself. Phew….
Knock, Knock. Ring, Ring…
It began almost at once and came usually in the form of those irritating and pressure-laden “question-mark words”..why? when? what if….??? followed by helpful (doom-laden) unsolicited advice delivered with just a tiny undertone of judgement to help get me back on track…. Toot!!
I realised I had to learn how to defend my “Telene Space” and to protect myself from everything and everyone “out there” who wanted to pull me back into the collective comfort zone…. (where everyone wears sensible shoes and carries umbrellas for rainy days.)
I could not bring the outside in with me. In essence, I had to create a sanctuary for myself without the pressure, (no matter how well-meaning.)
After all, I could do pressure well enough from the inside, thank you very much.
I had to change both how I thought and the way in which I did things and I couldn’t do that with society’s “shoulds “ raining all over me like lava bombs.
Hmmm. Defend the space. Time to select my weapons of choice…
Rotten tomatoes? (Fun but messy.)
Unleash the killer duck? (Nah, he was too busy loving everyone’s shoes.)
Good old avoidance-and-hope-they’ll-go-away? (I can only hide in here so long and pretend I’m not home..)
I had to step up and to learn to speak up, to find my voice.
(Use your words Telene, use your words..)
Feeling a little bruised and vulnerable (with a fair smattering of “scared shitless” tossed in for good measure), I kept it simple. It became almost a survival strategy for those first few months and I made it a focus.
I practised learning two words: Yes and No.
Generally speaking, the Yes was for me and the No was for others… Continue reading