Did a quick family hike (spouse, son, dog, self) and it's always interesting to see how our discussions unfold with our 11-year old who has yet to come along willingly on our excursions. We usually have to let him air his grievances without resistance for a goodly part of the time, and my legs often echo his sentiment. It's good medicine to see him work through his anxiety of being taken away from his screen, and challenge his body in new ways, and try to get him interesting in flora and fauna. He usually has some deep philosophical issue that emerges, like "why do I feel at odds with myself about family time?" that we puzzle through. When he gets a bit aggressive with the "blame mom for all my difficulties" my husband steps in to diffuse the situation before Eli gets too insulting or perhaps my feelings are truly hurt. Oddly enough I don't take most of it personally (I find it interesting how he vents his frustrations) but it's fair to think that I don't need to swallow all of the venom, plus they do need to bond.
On the way down, Craig introduced the idea of comparing hypothesis to theory, and would you believe it, Eli sunk his newly emerged adult teeth into that conversation fully! To listen in on the two of them discussing "null hypothesis" and the scientific method, seeing the gear turn in Eli's head and actually getting it more importantly, completely distracted from complaining about hiking and from being away from his computer was swoon-worthy. To add sprinkles to the delicately drizzled cake, Craig worked in Stoic philosophy, the principle of "living according to nature." At one point Eli had said "I'm starting to appreciate us doing this," and if that doesn't put a tick mark in the life affirmation column, I sure as hell don't know what does.
Tried tapping in the shower again (why the heck not). Today's affirmation choice: "I am a beautiful I accept myself for the vibrant woman that I am." Somewhat of all encompassing, but standing naked in the shower, a bit dirty from hiking, not feeling particular sexy or aesthetically beautiful, I figured it was the best time to assert that phrase, because I really really needed to hear it, not from anyone else but from myself.
After I got out of the shower I had this amazing epiphany. I remembered another friend online talking about feeling insecure about her writing, even though I have read her stuff and she is really good. She talked about always needed approval from others to fortify herself and I completely related to that. Then, I had a miscommunication with a dear dear friend of 40 years that stuck in my craw because it shouldn't have happened; I was making it harder to communicate than it should have been and I had to puzzle through why.
All of a sudden, it hit me. If I'm craving approval from someone who is already giving it means that it's me that has the problem. I'm the only one not approving of myself. There it is, plain and simple.
It's almost funny, you know? Seeing the truth. All this time I kept thinking "They are wrong, I'm really not (insert good thing here)." But NO...it's just some farkakteh negative voice that really is just some small part of me that needs to take a damn nap because it has had the soap box way to long. If was the tapping, or the hiking, or the family time, or the affirmation that have shaken up the dynamic that gave that part the loudspeaker, then good, let's keep doing any and all of the above. Because the quality of my life is going to get a hell of a lot better, and by proxy that of those around me.