"And when you're afraid of someones judgement you can't connect with them. You're too preoccupied with the task of impressing them."
~ Amanda Palmer, "The Art of Asking"
Yup, I've been there and done that.
As a matter of fact, I just had an epiphany about how I've been unconsciously (hence the epiphany part) playing up to someone.
I did this because I believed them to be a power house of influence.
I thought that if they didn't approve of me I'd be crushed under weight of their wicked and well respected tongue.
I was afraid.
As the film of my jumping-through-fiery-hoops-days plays out, I'm astounded at the lengths I've gone to to be included, liked and A-listed; all out of fear.
So desperate was I to have the merit of their grace that I became blind to the fact that the relationship was one sided.
That the words they used to express themselves were mean spirited, angry and pessimistic; all guised under the cloak of humour.
That they regularly made fun of things I hold dear.
In my eagerness to wear the robes of cherished follower, I missed connecting with who, and how, they really are.
The unwinding of my contortionistic endeavours has revealed many important insights. Not the least of which being that I truly believed that I enjoyed that person, and I did; the scared, battered, little one, that dwelled deep within, did like them - she was too afraid not to.
She thought that choosing herself over a false god made real through their capacity to influence, was punishable by death.
And so, she gave herself away.
She crippled her stance, blurred her vision, ignored her heart and lived in a mind sticky with fear.
But, that was then and this is now.
Now, she stands tall.
She's decided to impress herself first and is living the strength of heart, clarity of vision and power of choice that comes with every piece of garbage she empties from the trashcan of her mind.
Watching her spring forth and bloom anew, I once again learn that my connection with others is only as real as the connection I have with myself.