How do you feel? How do I feel? I still don’t know. I am afraid to feel.
Or rather I am struggling to learn how to feel. For many years, I have bottled up or hid my feelings. I have tried to stay strong and intelligent and ‘feeling-less’ because I didn’t want anyone to think I was weak. (Thank you Barbara for your plurk regarding this idea). When I had my panic attack almost 4 years ago now, my body was saying enough is enough. You need to face these feelings. You need to learn how to feel. I know this. I am working on this. But I still don’t know how. Or rather I still hide.
I sit at work sometimes tearing up over the sometimes sad, sometimes amazing stuff that goes on in the Emergency Room. But I don’t want anyone to see. I hide the tears inside. I stay alert and powerful. I am afraid that if I cry, I will lose that power. Plus what will people think of me if I cry? That I am weak? That I can’t handle my job?
That I am human???
I almost cried in therapy the other day. I have kind of teared up in a couple of sessions, but again I held back. Maybe I am not ready to let go? I understand to feel is to be brave, to be strong, to be powerful. Why can’t I feel?
Ok, maybe the problem isn’t that I can’t feel. Because I do feel sometimes. We just had some very very sad news yesterday and I am heartbroken. I came home and cried. So I am capable of feeling. Sometimes I just choose to not feel. Is it easier? Is it because I am alone and can’t share my pain with anyone? Why???
A couple weeks ago, there was a meme going around in which a lot of Second Life(SL) people/avatars were putting together a collage of change their avatars have gone through over the years of being in SL. From the early newbish low graphics cartoon characters to the recent meshion, higher graphics, beautiful figures we now see.
(The Fabulous Barbara Nicholls Chief Executive Officer for [LeeZu!] and a wonderful friend who I am honored to have gotten to know better over the years!!)
(Another truly inspiring friend GoSpeed Racer who has a heart of gold!!)
I hadn’t really thought of doing one myself. Gracie hasn’t changed much over the years except for maybe changing hair a few times and even putting on a dress every once in a while for party’s. Otherwise she has pretty much stayed in her classic black t-shirt, paint splatter jeans and signature converse.
Yesterday someone posted the Dove Evolution Video. I have seen it many times, but each time it makes such a strong impression.
So what is the connection? Is our perception of beauty based on the artificial? So many people create ideal, thin, beautiful avatars to represent themselves (I did)… Is Gracie really helping me in the struggle for self confidence and self esteem?
When I talk about Gracie to people in the real world. I normally explain that she is my ideal self. She is thin, blond, tall, beautiful, etc. Most say,”But she is a cartoon character… She is not real. How can she be your ideal?” I am still searching for the answer to this question.
I was thinking of how much I have changed in real life since I first started Second Life. Both physically, emotionally and mentally I have changed a lot. Some of it is good, some not so good. As you have seen in previous posts in this blog, which I started a year after I joined SL, I have even changed on purpose to find out the beauty myth behind what it means to be Gracie. I still don’t have the answers.
This is my take on the evolution of change in both Second Life and Real Life. The timeline follows how I looked in real life over the last 5 years of being in Second Life. It was definitely a weird feeling to see how happy I was in the beginning and how I have changed in 5 years and have maybe ‘grown up’ or gotten older. Still a lot to take in. I would love to know your thoughts.
(This story has been going around on Facebook…)
A while back, at the entrance of a gym, there was a picture of a very thin and beautiful woman. The caption was “This summer, do you want to be a mermaid or a whale?”
The story goes, a woman (of clothing size unknown) answered the following way:
“Dear people, whales are always surrounded by friends (dolphins, seals, curious humans), they are sexually active and raise their children with great tenderness.
They entertain like crazy with dolphins and eat lots of prawns. They swim all day and travel to fantastic places like Patagonia, the Barents Sea or the coral reefs of Polynesia.
They sing incredibly well and sometimes even are on cds. They are impressive and dearly loved animals, which everyone defend and admires.
Mermaids do not exist.
But if they existed, they would line up to see a psychologist because of a problem of split personality: woman or fish?
They would have no sex life and could not bear children.
Yes, they would be lovely, but lonely and sad.
And, who wants a girl that smells like fish by his side?
Without a doubt, I’d rather be a whale.
At a time when the media tells us that only thin is beautiful, I prefer to eat ice cream with my kids, to have dinner with my husband, to eat and drink and have fun with my friends.
We women, we gain weight because we accumulate so much wisdom and knowledge that there isn’t enough space in our heads, and it spreads all over our bodies.
We are not fat, we are greatly cultivated.
Every time I see my curves in the mirror, I tell myself: “How amazing am I ?! ”
(The girl on the picture is French model Tara Lynn)