I wanted to write something for my birthday because I mean, if it can’t be commodified then really what’s the point in a birthday, other than celebrating the gift of life but that doesn’t translate well into SEO. I bet you’re expecting me to moan and bitch about the birthday single life, the absence of love from one person and finding it in yourself blah blah blah. Sitting down to write this, all the usual topics ran through my mind, loneliness, self love, parenting etc. But none of them were doing it for me. I pushed myself to think deeper saying to myself, ‘Daniella, you must be repressing something, feeling nothing just isn’t how we roll”.
So I thought and thought some more and it dawned on me while ordering my free birthday venti; a testament to how much I spend at Starbucks I know, but I prefer to think of it as the java monarch displaying their love for me in a small but welcomed gesture. Feeling nothing is kind of where it’s at. I don’t mean in a psychopathic ‘let’s kill bunnies and laugh about it kind of way nor do I mean ‘watch me stick my hand in fire and not flinch’. I mean just being. Being present, not just in the physical sense but the mental and emotional sense as well.
Growth is painful, change is uncomfortable and the self help gurus of the world tell us to welcome this. So we embrace the discomfort of growth and ideally we are always growing and evolving so does that means a life of continuous uncomfort? I mean, a life of Spanx and heels are just as painful but add in emotional growth and in the words of Sean Kingston’s pop anthem “someday call 911”. Change is uncomfortable because it pushes against our inclination to embrace the status quo. We love predictability even when what we predict isn’t all that great but better the devil we know than the one we don’t, right? That’s why we stay in relationships, jobs and situations that don’t serve us. At least we know what’s coming next because the unknown is just scary as all hell. When I was first divorced I vividly remember saying ‘ I wish someone would just tell me that in the future this will all be worth it, it will all be ok.” The lack of predictability is what is truly terrifying, it’s what keeps us standing still and what makes change so scary and uncomfortable.
Growth is uncomfortable and pushes us out of our comfort zones but a life of growth does not mean a life of discomfort. At some point that discomfort becomes the new norm. It doesn’t make your body and face recoil in a physical display of emotional discomfort. It just is. It’s just a person that walks beside us that sometimes we want to ignore, sometimes we want to kick and sometimes want to hug. It just is. Accepting it is arguably the real challenge. Accepting the days that feel like hell is feeling that growth; Accepting the days that feel like joy is celebrating that growth. And accepting the days that feel like nothing at all is living in growth.
Today I just am. I don’t know if it will be this way next year, hell I don’t even know if I’ll feel this way tomorrow. But for today, on this birthday of mine, I just am. And that’s enough.