On Exploring the Duality of My Own NatureJuly 11, 2013
Often, I like to go back and read through journal entries from the past few months. It is literally the most therapeutic way for me to get a lot off my mind and it really helps capture different time frames in my life. I read it almost like it's a story in itself. I don't journal every day, but I journal whenever I feel like it's necessary. I've captured the most boring of days and the most hectic of times in that journal. I've had it going consistently for nearly two years now.
So, here is a post I re-read recently, written this past spring, and really responded to all over again. I thought I'd share, because everyone has felt like this...right? Or is it just me?
"These small things bind together, latch on to my soul, and debilitate me. I don’t know why I cannot overcome them and I don’t know why I am always so magnificently confounded by the duality I feel in my own nature. I don’t know how to be okay with being several versions of myself on the inside. Some days I desire virtue, academia, and honor and other days I’m no better than anyone else.
“No one knows what they want.”
“You’re young, you’ll figure out.”
“Experiment! Experiment! Experiment!”
“You’re only young once.”
“It’s okay not to have it all figured out yet.”
“Who the hell even knows who they are?”
And so on and so forth…every reason I should not feel dismay at my own conflicting wants and desires and processes and actions. Are they right or are all of the statements just simple justifications for the failures of our generation (and every preceding and subsequent generation) as a whole?
I have strayed so blindly off the course of who I was once was and instead of the directionless leading me to clarity (as I once thought it would); the openness has only allowed me to make larger ambiguity out of every little thing. Ambiguity is so ambiguous in itself. I find myself unable to be entirely on board (all versions of myself coming to some innate agreement like foreign nations within my psyche) with very few things these days. There are little truths in my life: I love my family, I love my brother, I miss my Spot, ultimately I crave stability and happiness, I want to do well academically and follow suit with a rewarding job, I want to be tan and skinny, and so on and so forth with the small bucket of truths I do actually possess or feel. However, in every other aspect I seem to be fighting constantly with my own duality. I’ve tried being everything all at once and I’ve tried to be a blank canvas, sitting idle – making no distinct decision in matters that I can’t get all of myself on board with. Yet, that is an unsatisfactory solution because it leads me to sitting in limbo, still as unsure as ever.
Mostly, in this stage of my life I am confused…so utterly and totally confused. I’m unsatisfied with all of my moral compasses, ricocheting between the two extremes of boring virtue and modern day heathen. I’m sure there is some modern day equivalent of balance, but I fear that it will always be the unreachable nirvana.
The uncommitment to myself – to one way of being – is frustrating.
And then society chimes in by saying:
“but who says you can’t be more than one way?"
"Who says you can’t be a sinner and saint? Who says you can’t be a drug addict and be exceptionally religious a la Johnny Cash?"
"Why are you trying to pigeon hole yourself – limit yourself? Why?”
I wonder the same thing…why? Why am I unsatisfied with my own nature – my own obvious ability to harbor all of these wants and desires and options (though some conflicting)? Why can’t I be satisfied with experimentation and boundlessness? Why do I seek to tie myself down to one way of being? My fore-mothers would be rolling over in their graves, seeing me snuff the infinite and limitless abyss that now voids in front of me as I dip my toes into the water of being a young twenty something woman. They fought diligently for this ability – these freedoms. I have choices and freedom, and I can do and feel as I please to a certain extent – so why do I find only negatives in this way of being?
I grow ever more frustrated as I attempt to figure it out. On paper – in my head – no matter how I consider it, it’s a jumbled ambiguous mess and the last thing I need to add to my plate is more ambiguity.
Frustration and confusion and the cycling of emotions prevail."