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  • Writer's pictureeschaden


This is a tough one for me...I seem to be responsible to a fault. Then at the very same time, I am totally irresponsible in some aspects of my life. I have come to know that extreme self sufficiency a very large indicator of past trauma and at one time I would have told you that over responsibility is similar. I am not sure, honestly.

Sometimes, I am not really sure who the fuck I am anymore. Middle life is a weird place to be. It is not easy for the first time to be faced with the downhill slope towards death. It is not easy at all. I find myself having weird thoughts, and sometimes the behavior that comes with clouded thinking. Sometimes I am shocked at what comes up in my head, heart and body. Complete baffled.

One of the places where I notice this more, is adulting. All the things that I have done for such a very long time, I do not really want to do anymore. And at the same time, I have never been more adult in my life. I am responsible for a great number of things, people, and beings. And also at the same time, the fantasy of eschewing all of the ties to adulthood plagues me. I will not say how frequently I fantasize about quitting my job and moving to some remote land and writing and not doing much else. There are times where the level and depth of my responsibility is paralyzing.

But that is the thing about me and responsibility, while I often dream about dropping out of the whole responsibility game, I can’t. It is who I am. I show up and do the thing. I go to work when I don’t want to, I lead meetings even when I would much rather go to bed, I feed the dogs, goats, and cats instead of doing only what I want to do.

I spent the whole of my youth always clamoring for more responsibility and guess what? I got it. So today, even though I sometimes feel like I would like to do it differently, I know that it is just who I am. I am a shower-upper...whether I like it or not.

But in relationships, I need work. I think this is where my loyalty to being responsible falters. I have historically been quite self serving when it comes to putting other first in relationships. I am not sure whether I am just a selfish jerk or very loyal to my own self purpose...and no matter how many days I struggle with this, it is likely that I will never really know. I know that for my recovery I am responsible for giving away what was so freely given to me. I know that in my life showing up and doing what I said I would or committed to do is the goal. I also know that I often just don’t want to. But I think that is what lies at the foundation of responsibility, doing it anyway. Whatever it is...doing it in spite of all the feelings to the contrary. Honoring what you are supposed to do because you are supposed to do it.

Like everything else in life, there is always room for improvement. And this is definitely an area in love that I need to work on. Trauma a thick undercurrent in relationships...and I am eroded more often than I believe I should be. Because whether I like it or not, there is always a gap between who I am and who I would like to be. I am not cured, healed or arrived on some spiritual plateau where I can rest easy and live with the delusion that I am living my best most responsible life. No, instead, I have to look at all the very many ways that I still show up immature, dishonest and selfish. These are the hobgoblins of the irresponsible mind, and I fall prey far more often than I think passable for someone of my age and station in life. I keep trying though and I guess that has to account for something.

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