When I used to think myself an authority
I see this picture of a woman in leggings and a sports bra in the headstand pose and I admire it. I try to do my headstands weekly, but it’s fallen out of habit (not favor). I am attracted to this image, the lifestyle it represents, a familiarity I know from having once thrown myself fully into it. I lived it and breathed it and spoke knowledgeably on; and people always asked me questions or for my advice. I exuded someone who might have an answer. I spoke publicly on many occasions.
The picture is really an other, and it currently feels distant. An old me, to be honest. I wonder when I last dove so deep.
In conversation I’ll often hear myself throw out random facts pertaining to -or possibly useful in future context. It all seems a-little-bit-about-a-lot verses a lot on one thing. This is my personality and I long-ago came to accept it. I have often skirted the surface.
In ways I’ve dabbled: I’ve bailed too early on a couple relationships; I didn’t make a recipe a hundred times like a cookbook author must do before publishing; I lived a gym-rat, clean eating life just enough to physique model, but never to compete; I produced an EP and singles, but no more; I got on stages and performed multiple times, but I’ve never toured, and I’ve never sold out a venue; I edit bits of writing and short e-books but nothing revelatory and certainly nothing close to a bestseller; I’ve been in over a hundred photo shoots but never signed to an agency. Geez, could the list go on…
So one may understand how I see myself as floundering, jumping on lily pads, never diving in. I’ve rarely fully immersed. This is why I so much admire people who have stuck to one thing for 10-20 years, their life, or have been in relationships of 10-20-50 years, their life. I just don’t know this. We all know the Thomas Edison lightbulb cliché. Stick-to-it-of-ness. And any mentor worth a damn better tell you to pick one thing and stay the course.
I also see very intuitively how I don’t backtrack, as much as I want to revisit these older iterations of myself. So this is really why the yogi image breaks my heart, because I do so long for this person I once was but wonder if I can reclaim it. The worst case scenario is to be one of those persons who says ‘I used to be this, used to do that, used to go here’ and quietly longs for it all. Collectively we see this as having let go or given up, let’s be honest. This is a deep fear, not about hunger or shelter or safety but about not being my best self.
Therefore, I believe, my personal maturity may be about revisiting and revising and fixing for the sake of my name and reputation. Couldn’t be any harm in it, and may be damn well worth it.
We would all like to perceive second chances as ‘this time it will be better, I will be better’.
How can one have any authority without longterm tenacity, a built-up reputation, street cred amongst peers? I really wonder what I’ll make a true success of. What do I want so deeply right now, I’m willing to throw myself in and drown this time, dammit? I know people perceive me as successful in so many ways, but no one knows how much we personally minimize ourselves.
Having an authority really means being taken seriously. We all want to be taken seriously! Especially now, especially when all credibility is at stake. Politics has been our wake up call, not the problem -but a result (as I’ve said before).
Maturity also lends towards subtlety. I might not shout it from the mountain tops this next time, but I am going to do this right.