Rejection is so often a gateway to liberation. How odd that is. Even loss, that, too, frees us up.
Friends of mine I once knew personally posted on Facebook that their house had burned down but that they hadn’t been home and it was really okay. And that they had insurance.
I mentioned this to someone that I know who does not know this unfortunate family and lives elsewhere on the planet. I said, “Do you think this reflects on the oddity of Facebook that a tragedy is taken so lightly like that?”
My friend said, “What do you think?”
I knew what was coming. How could I be naive? My friend told me undoubtedly they burned their own home for the insurance payment.
That was maybe a week ago. I’ve thought about this since. Now I realize:
No more broken appliances.
No more worries about hiring someone to do the lawn.
No more property taxes.
The basement flooded last year anyway.
We weren’t married to all that “stuff.” We are married to each other.
Every loss is a cause to rejoice. I think we need to realize this. Or I am beginning to.
Every “no” is a springboard to finding a “yes.” If everyone around us confirmed us where we stand now, then that’s just where we’d be stuck. “No” means we will move forward.
Many people find that’s true of being fired from a job, or kicked out of a school. I have looked back and wondered if being kicked out liberated me from that place. I remember feeling that way after I was fired from McDonald’s in 1977. Know why? Because I suggested maybe they could give their leftovers to poor people instead of throwing out perfectly good food. While getting fired and being told what a shit you are and that McDonald’s will keep you in a database forever so never even think of working for any McDonald’s again didn’t feel so great, I felt freed up after I’d thought of it.
I knew all along that I didn’t want to work for McDonald’s. I had applied to work there only because I was desperate for a job and never believed in the company. My next job was for a startup. I liked it a lot better. Know something? We gave away a lot of food there, too.
I also felt liberated because restaurant slavery work wasn’t a lifetime goal for me. Until I found the next job, I enjoyed the free time so I could work on composing more music, practicing, and preparing for my classes. I had recently moved and this was a good time to get to know my awesome roommate better.
There was a time in 2012 after I’d fired the abuser that I didn’t have a therapist. In fact, that was when I made all those calls and heard nothing but “no” for the next year. The ones who said yes knew nothing about eating disorders. The “too good to be true” one was a red flag from day one since he called me “Honey” all the time. It got worse from there. He told me about his ex-girlfriend in detail. And worse. And even worse, after I did the right thing and stopped going to him, and several people told me to report the guy, my own psychiatrist told me I was “delusional” for firing him. After that, I simply couldn’t find anyone. Three more didn’t know anything about eating disorders. I had called about 50 residential centers and places all around the country. You bet they turned me down. All that effort…and yet, being told “no” was just what I needed.
Is this what is meant by “a kick in the butt”? I never saw any bruises on my rear end but it’s easy to miss things on your backside. Which might be for the better. I kicked myself good and hard.
That’s what it took–all that repeated “no” for me to realize I was far better off without a therapist running my life. Therapy had limited me all those years. The process is said to be freeing, but after I looked at my life, I realized that this was hardly true. It was slavery.
Therapy was insulting. Diagnosing another person, whether pronouncing a person “ill” under the DSM, or even saying something like, “You have anger issues” is an aggressive power play. Anytime a person makes an implication of the other’s moral inferiority it is a move to not only separate the diagnosed from the diagnoser, but to elevate the one doing the diagnosing. It’s like saying “I have insight into you that you do not have.” And the diagnosed pays for this! So even if a person might be said to “have insight into his condition,” this is not really what the diagnoser believes, as esteemed “helper” who puffs himself/herself up to be the more knowledgeable, more educated, wiser, and morally superior one. The diagnosed is a customer blinded by obligation. Otherwise, we could all cure ourselves.
In fact, we can, and do cure ourselves. I see this all around me. The wounded heal. We can hope the same for what ails our society and the for the blue planet where we live.
I have yet to meet a person whose moral character was so flawed that there was no possibility of change. I have felt incredibly stuck myself and in an impossible and irreversible situation but even that extreme shittiness changed. Even when those around me were naysayers who had no faith in me, and said “no” over and over, I hung on. I have no clue what kept me going since all I saw around me was gloom and hopelessness.
By all means, I know that even the worst human we can think of should be given a second chance. Anyone can cast off the baggage. I have seen incredible turnarounds. I think we need to realize that turning life around is what usually happens, as all around us, the seasons turn.
I was just kicked out of something, given the boot. Wow, I feel terrific realizing just how much this frees me up. For a change, this isn’t some human entanglement. It’s one of those unpleasantries that happens to even the most agreeable and law-abiding people. Time to cut off the red tape and recycle it. Tomorrow, if you are up early enough, you’ll see me flying by, and know me by the red ribbons in my hair.