Music I’m listening to, discovered, or rediscovered.
Aurelia – Wax (Capshun Remix) *[caution – rapidly flashing lights in video]
Diplo & Miguel – Don’t Forget My Love (John Summit Remix)
Fabian Mazur & Snavs – Flow
Juelz – Inferno (Squired Remix)
Labrinth – Skeletons (Lexi Needed a Break)
Lakou Mizik & Joseph Ray – Ogou (Pran Ka Mwen)
Lawrence – Don’t Lose Sight
Stela Cole – DIY
Z-Ro – Gripping Grain
Z-Ro – Wonder If I’m Blessed
Lately I’ve been on this weird kick of watching the show Hoarders. I’m both repulsed and fascinated by the show. Chiefly, I just do not understand how people can live like that. It’s the ultimate in dissociation to me. In some respects. I mean these people have bugs and rats crawling all over them. Some without electricity and running water. The smell is apparently atrocious. Enough to send you running.
And I am SO confused by these people. Because inevitably on every show the people act like they don’t have a problem. Or at least dramatically minimize the problem. When it’s obvious to everyone else.
I could not be more different. In most ways. Cleaning makes me feel good. I can get obsessive about it if I let myself. And I have, many times. I literally go to the car wash almost every day. Wash the whole thing, clean the windows, vacuum it. Granted my vehicle gets a lot of traffic. But still, I feel so off if I don’t do that every day. So I don’t understand how people can get like they do on the Hoarders show.
I also don’t understand why I feel compelled to watch these people on the show. Maybe its the audacity.
But I know I’ve learned a few things since watching a few episodes. For one, almost every single hoarder on the show has had some really awful tragedy happen to them. Almost always it is a tragic death of someone really close to them. And then it’s like they stop living and completely fall apart. That seems to be the theme. They give up. And kinda literally bury themselves in the memories as represented by the objects the people associate with that loved one.
I guess we have to find a reason to live. That’s what seems to help these hoarders. They seem to get the motivation to start cleaning and facing their demons and facing their grief when their remaining loved ones basically have to physically shake them and scream at them to help them understand that they still want them around. They still need the surviving family member. (Even in spite of their horrendous hoarding.) Interestingly, it never seems to be enough for the person to clean up for their own wellbeing.
I’ve also noticed that people start collecting objects as a way to comfort themselves. Which in full disclosure, really helped me personally. I started to realize that I’ve caused myself a measure of distress not by holding onto objects, but holding onto experiences and people.
Where does this come from? I think in similar fashion to the hoarders, I experienced a lot of loss over my life. So I clung to any happiness I came across. And that was very adaptive in the beginning. It was the way I survived in the face of significant fear and sadness. My super power, if I have any, is the ability to lock on with a laser focus to the slightest bit of hope. And let that carry me through absolute hell.
But then I look at myself. And I see this woman full of experiences. A heart and mind full of people who have clearly moved on. My internal life packed to the brim with the past. Just like the hoarders, never letting go.
The journey over the past few years has been about figuring out what I want. And there is a Sarah that I used to like a lot more. She was active. She was open. She wasn’t as cynical. And I blame the loss of her on my fear of letting go.
Because I used to believe it was up to me. That word “responsibility” that people like to throw around so much. They even slather it all over the front of glossy magazines. Appealing to those of us with hearts full of love. That we often save for others while neglecting ourselves. They market their magazines and products just for us – promising the answer. That if we just do this or say that then we’ll be able to fix it. To get the love and the people we want. It’s all in our control, right?
Good luck with that. I’m finally admitting that I’ve experienced very differently. And I lost myself along the way. Lost everything really.
Finally I get it. Finally I understand that God is working on me with me. Not for Their ego. But for me, for my enjoyment.
And the religious can hardly imagine that. Can hardly give themselves any permission to entertain that God might actually be interested in your desires. Interested in you being free to enjoy this world and experience happiness, lots of happiness!
But I think that’s a major part of this journey I’ve been on. To not be afraid. To lean into the healing. To let go. To give up. To trust God. Really trust God. Not only for eternity. But for everything in my heart and mind. The people I love. The things that I want. Even sex. I think God really cares about that. For you also.
And so my spring cleaning is already in full gear. And it’s going to take a lot longer than one short break. Just like the hoarders of physical things, I have loads and loads of emotional and mental memories to sort through and release. A quick review tonight informed me that I have over 97,000 pictures on my computer. And that’s the tip of the iceberg.
And yet I sit alone. I sleep alone. I eat alone. Just like the hoarders. Because there is no space for me to be in the present. As I’m carrying around so much of the past. Scared to let it go. Just like the hoarders again. Scared that I’ll need those memories again.
That I’ll need those people again. That if I let them go then I won’t get better in the future. Or I won’t get them back if I need them.
And yet they are dragging me down. Completely. To where I am almost completely stuck. When there is SO MUCH MORE I want to do. So much more I want to be.
This is for me. Saving myself. For me.
I’m giving myself the time I need to process.
That was one good thing about writing my third book. It isn’t finalized yet. But I put that off for five years. And maybe it really wasn’t for anyone else. Maybe it was just for me. Because as I processed and wrote the memories down, my perspective of the situation started to change and finally solidify. I thought I would never be able to move on. After trying and failing for so long. But writing solved that dilemma. The process helped me grieve and start to finally move on.
So then I realized that I have a lifetime of stories that I’ve never told. A lifetime of losses. Of loves. And although my weight has been a protection for me when I didn’t have the ability to protect myself, it is also a physical manifestation of my heart, mind, and spirit. Just holding onto so much. Trying to carry it all on my own.
And I’m done. Finally done.
I’ve wrestled with the rejection of pretty much everyone. And maybe it’s true that nobody really cares. But, I care. And I value myself. I value what I’ve been through.
And maybe nobody I know wants to hear these things. But out of the seven billion people in the world, hopefully someone needs to read what is on my heart to share. Just like so many times other people’s stories have helped me.
That’s all I feel like I’m truly good at. Communicating my experience. As best I know how. Imperfect as it is.
And just like all good gifts, I feel like I’ll become emotionally, mentally, spiritually, and even physically sick if I hold back as I’ve done most of my life. Due to fear.
So just like writing two of my three books has done so far, I’m looking forward to finally processing and moving on. Cleaning out my internal “house”. Making room to REALLY live. Making room for not only enjoying the things I lost along the way that I really loved about myself and loved to do. But also making room for people to be in my life again. Whether they be new or return improved.
“God is not in the process of winning an argument against religion. Jesus did not come to win a few doctrinal debates. He won our hearts.” – Francois Du Toit