Beyond old choices

(Personal thoughts)
March 19, 2014

Hello, I am Andie, and I am addicted to running from life.

My life is limited by my need to feel that I measure up to some code I have made so high I can’t reach it. I have blamed others for the place I am and used excuses to defend why I don’t just stop.

Rainer Maria Rilke once wrote,

“Have patience with everything unresolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves…..Don’t search for the answers, which could not be given to you now, because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps then, someday far in the future, you will gradually without even noticing it, live your way into the answer.”

Maybe there is a cue for me here in changing this place I am in. What if I stop shaming those selves of the past and begin to listen to the shaming questions I have shut away?  Could I risk something new  by learning to embrace those broken places as questions instead of accusations?

Loving is a freeing embrace that allows a person, a thing, or even a thought to change your life in meaningful ways. Is this what Rilke is encouraging us to do? “Love the questions”? Don’t avoid them or give them merely glib attention? Don’t shut them out? Don’t cage them in a third-person story that keeps them at arm’s length? Hear them? Seek to know them? Accept them into the fabric of …… me?

Do I have the courage to stop running from my life? Do I have the courage to hold onto my own confusions without breaking off pieces of me to protect myself from feeling what I don’t want to feel? Is it time to stop and listen to what has been hidden in those silenced witnesses to my life?

Perhaps, it is time for me to start asking the questions in those stuck memories, to write the letters from the rawness of those places that I have held separate from myself. Perhaps it is time to begin loving these questions in my life enough to allow them to speak uncensored by what I think my life should be.

Loving these questions does not mean I don’t want to let go of the hurts that somehow have become a part of the fiber of me. They may never bring me to a place of understanding the whys. What it will do is allow me to stop the shaming I have done to myself for years – I can live my way into the answer.

Yes, loving the questions leads to living the questions, according to Rilke. By loving those shamed places in me enough to let them speak can I make peace with my life and begin living openly as the fully human person I was created to be?

So it’s time to stop running, to turn and face the person in the mirror, layer by layer healing and integrating the parts of myself I have broken off to insulate myself from painful truths hidden inside the caverns of my mind and heart. Having learned the art of mask wearing is fragile at best and juggling so many images frayed within my Self, I pulled away from others, fearful of exposure, fearful that others will turn away from the unlovely in me.

Ann Hillman says:

“We look with uncertainty
Beyond the old choices for
Clear-cut answers
To a softer, more permeable aliveness
Which is every moment
At the brink of death;
For something new is being born in us
If we but let it.
We stand at a new doorway,
Awaiting that which comes . . .
Daring to be human creatures.
Vulnerable to the beauty of existence.
Learning to love.”

Awaiting . . . daring . . . vulnerable . . . learning . . . those words hold the key. I am free to move forward. I am free to accept myself as human, as fallible. I can choose to let this day be a new beginning, continuing the new birthing into each tomorrow.

I have always believed that the best life answer is one that creates a dozen new questions. Perhaps this is a case in point as this exploration leaves me alert and my mind ranging into the day – empowered to be truer to my inner self.

If I can end this addiction to running, perhaps I can be free to live and allow others to live more freely around me. Perhaps I can be honest with my inner questions so that I can be more honest in addressing the questions of others. I can open myself to change so I can be less judgmental of the changes and choices of others. Perhaps I can stop being trapped by anything controlling me from the outside so I can relax my need for controlled stability to stop the anxiety within me.

Hello, I am Andie, and I am addicted to running from life.

What is an addiction? An addiction is anything or anyone that keeps someone from being true to their inner self. I am the authority of my life. As such, the questions are mine to ask. And perhaps, in learning to love my questions, I can learn to live authentically into the answers of how to find my way into a community of others again.



**** My thanks to Anne Gollias Peterson and Dale Lavely for support, incite and editting suggestions to create a clearer and more authentic writing.


7 thoughts on “Beyond old choices

  1. Denise Jackson

    You have good mentors providing you with good feedback. Have you ever read Debbie Ford’s The Dark Side of the Light Chasers? I think you would find even more insights from her book. I wish you well as you dwell in this in-between time, preparing yourself to be ready for the answers when they come.

    1. ljandrie57 Post author

      Will look up that book. Another I am useing is called When the Past is Present by David Ricco. I know some words out there is to just let the past be, but my dad did that and what he justt ignored came out toward me. I want to know that if I ever go into dementia, I will have done what I can to unbury the ugly within so that it doesn’t have as much power to harm my children. What work it takes is worth it to be the best mother and teacher AND person I can be.

  2. Rhonda on Purpose

    Thank you Linda. Every word has life. You are on an exciting journey. I know a couple of books that you might enjoy. Dancing with God and Practicing the Presence of Jesus, both by Irene Alexander. I have extra copies of both I could post to you, if you are interested. Keep writing please. People need to hear stories like this. rr

    1. ljandrie57 Post author

      Thank you, Rhonda. I was talking to someone about this in a post this morning and wrote this, more about the post on truth but reflecting what I am saying here

      “For me, it took letting go off the Thou shalls and the Thou shall nots to truly begin to have a relationship with the person behind the message. It is that relationship, not all the trappings around it that are the center of truth.I am realizing that about my life as well. My anxiety triggers when I am asked for more presence then a surface. I have storied so much of my life in third person to keep from letting myself feel some very deep griefs that I am like one of those closets that you stuff so full that you have to lean against the door to close. This week I wrote from one of those places not with the censor of who I am now but letting the little girl write to her teacher. Somehow, though I am still dealing with anger, the closet feels just that little bit less ready to spring open spilling everything everywhere.I guess, you might say I am working through the thou shalls and thou shall nots of my life to find a personal relationship with the person who God created me to be.”

      Thank you for affirming that these stories matter. It means a lot to me.


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