I was totally on my game last night. I mention it because it is so not me. I was laughing, telling jokes, comfortable, making comments without much worrying about what people would think of me. In other words, I was my authentic self. Not insecure, not worried, not painfully self-aware. And there were times throughout the night when I realized this and took note; not quite like an out-of-body experience watching it from afar, but my insecure or irrational or timid mouse inner self noticed and was pleasantly surprised. And then I tried to tell her to go away, to enjoy it for what it was worth, to follow this relaxed, uninhibited self however far she would go. Not to jinx it, second-guess it, scare her away with too many self-checks and ruminations. And now I think of the Halloween party we went to last Saturday. My kindergartener was invited to a classmate’s family party. Their neighbors were there, family members, other classmates and their families. Walking in to a crowd of ‘strangers’ was a bit daunting, but surprisingly only a little. A playmate’s mom soon walked up and introduced herself. I found the host’s mom and introduced myself. I sought out other classmates’ parents. I told jokes. I talked to strangers. I initiated conversations. I was so not me. But then, I said to my husband, I was on my game. Because that is me – part of me, anyway. The part that is uninhibited, comfortable in her own skin, totally inhabiting the spacious self that is she. My authentic self.
Is it this place? Is it the excuse, the opportunity of a change in place to make things happen, to reinvent myself? Because I could’ve done all these things in my former home. But I didn’t. Was it the memory and residual trauma of postpartum? Was it the repression of people who knew me from way back when, when I was a certain way? Was it the familiar that I began to blend into? I was scared. I was stuck. Now I’m free. I don’t know if it’s the physical space that now surrounds us that is freeing us; the mental space that in turn affords (if you believe if in the elements of Feng Shui); the need to ground ourselves and make connections since we don’t have any. But life seems to be shaping up. And me right along with it.