What Rots Your Soul?
Resentment and/or contempt...those do it for me. Anytime I feel either, I am on the fastback to internal (and often if I am honest) external combustion...
Re-feeling something negative, painful, bothersome or problematic with the idea that whatever it was that went down, should have gone down differently...and was not my fault at all.
Believing that someone’s existence or life is below mine. That the way that they do, feel, exist is stupid, beneath value of my interest, examination or notice.
These are at least my working definitions...
My life has been ashamedly plagued with both far too often.
And for a very long time, I had no way out of them. If I felt them, they tended to permeate my entire existence right down to the core of my soul and begin spoiling everything that was good and true and wonderful in my life. Resentment and contempt are like a cancerous growths, untreated, and fed copious amounts of sugared fuel that make it spread like wildfire. Soon, they have taken over my life so much that I can’t see anything but resentment and contempt.
I am not sure if this next part is because I am an addict or if everyone feels like this, but instead of identifying that the resentment and contempt are rotting my soul, I befriend them, hold them dear to me, defend them, protect them with the ferocity of a mother for her child in peril.
What I do NOT do innately is take a step back from them, examine them, talk about them or refuse to act out on them...well, at least that is how I used to be, and can still be sometimes.
It seems this later course of conduct is my hardwired default that I return to dispute literal years of committed and dedicated service to being happy, joyous and free from these two buggers!
But I will say that I spend a lot less time there than I used to...it is almost like I can feel the rot in my soul as it starts and the stench from it, invades my senses so that my ability to sit with my shitty resentment and/or contempt becomes so ripe and ravenous that I tend to address it much more quickly and summarily than I used to. Rotting from the inside out is not fun and certainly optional...and far too smelly.
For me, I have a program of action that addresses these monstrous feelings that decompose the spiritual and positive life I have worked so hard to build. Today, I do not want any part of me corroding into disintegrating flesh, most especially those parts of me closest to my heart and soul.
As with most everything in my life, I have a choice to look at things through a lens of envy and greed, pulling close to my chest more than my fair share of everything, or I can decide to just sit back and allow the universe to distribute whatever it will in its own damn time.
When I got back together with Lane for the last time, I said something really stupid...and at the time, I really, really meant it. I said the following:
“Even if I get just one more day with him, any pain that follows is worth it...”
But that is not how I felt when he left...again. I felt bereft, inconsolable, sad, angry, hurt, upset and despondent. Now, if I would have really meant what I said, Lane would have been in my life, hand open, no clutching and he could have flown away any time he liked and I would have found immense comfort in my above stupid statement. But that was not the case. I wanted him to stay, I wanted to build a life with him, I wanted, wanted, wanted, wanted. Each want like a finger, circling its grasp tighter and tighter.
I have no idea why he left this last time, or really any time. I always feel so intensely dumb when people ask me what happened...because I can’t tell them. I just stare at them dumbly and shrug.
But if I meant what I said, he could have gone and I could have be super happy because that one day was enough...
Instead I was a fucking mess for longer than I care to admit.
Over the months that followed his final departure, I would feel resentment and contempt rising in my body, it would always start from that wounded and fluttery place in my belly and spread like ruinous rancor, souring everything in its wake. Those were the days that it was hard to get out of bed.
But because I have committed myself to doing whatever it takes to be free of resentment and contempt, I got up, wrote about it, shared my feelings and writing with another and got to the hardest part of any resentment or contemptuous feeling...mine.
It was not Lane’s fault that I felt the way that I did. He did what he did, his reasons for so behaving, his and private. My feelings on the other hand, were my responsibility, my disappointment, expectation and pain. What was I to do with them? Project them outwards towards him, drinking the poison but expecting him to die? No, not me, not anymore.
I choose today to move towards the light. Towards the light that heals those festering wounds that flair up from time to time. I shine that bright spotlight on my part and light it up like the Fourth of July...Leaving Lane or others their part, for them to deal with in their time, and me to contemplate my own dysfunction and related methodologies toward healing.
A numbers of years ago, I would have described my soul as blackened...but today, I feel a purity that always existed by was overgrown with malice and harsh judgment and a strong commitment to feel those things forever. Today, I search them out, for they still exist, and I go after them root and branch, in an effort to bring peace and calm to my soul.
Resentment and contempt will always be available to rot my soul...but only if I engage. It is, always, my choice to feed the putrefying resentment and contempt, or dig them out, extract them with the cold and almost surgical tools of honest self appraisal.