A question was raised in a writing group that I participate in online that asked about our little “screwed up bits”. What I uncovered didn’t feel like just a “bit” it was a whole damn chunk. Dammit! I realized in myself what I’d termed a “narcissistic level” of navel gazing and needing affirmation from others. From my journal, I wrote:
It feels downright childish to me. Akin to the incessant cries of the youngster on the side of the pool to his momma, “WATCH ME, Momma, WATCH ME!”
While lying in meditation to a drumming upon my therapist’s couch, asking myself the question, “Are you too self-important?”, I felt a bubbling up from the beats that reverberated within my gut. That young girl on the side of the pool yelling for all her might, “I AM important! I am IMPORTANT!” We are ALL important, and damn each of us in our humanness that rarely allows us to be fully present to one another. We’re so full of ourselves, our filled up and mixed up worlds, that it’s just so darn difficult to fully lean into anothers’ needs.
The navel gazing is vital in order to know thyself and grow, but I began to realize in my visualization how important it then is to USE that knowledge for the benefit of another. Perhaps it does cross into narcissism if you just sit in your awareness, gazing forever within. My question became “How can I harness this passion, this passion for writing and art so that it’s a gift to others?” (which frankly, is always The Question.)
But today I visualized an answer. I’ve struggled with the idea of a career; is that really something I want at this time in my life? (or just an opportunity for more appraisal seeking?) I don’t want an 8-5pm job; I’m blessed that I can be selfish in that. I have a degree in Occupational Therapy, but I don’t want to go back to that. But I could expand on it. I loved my psychiatric work, working with crafts. But I know more now. I know what experiential learning can do for you. I’d like to work with women and young girls in transition to help them be more self aware. To develop their own navel gazing and self-appreciation. I can expand on my degree by getting what credentials I need behind my name to hang my shingle. Take a business/marketing class. Take more classes in symbolic interpretation. I could do all that.
My meditation ended with a vision of that child proudly beating her chest in full Indian regalia, dancing around the fire, saying “YES! You can do this! We have our gifts to share! We ARE important! We are IMPORTANT!”