Boundaries are important. They tell us where something begins and something ends. I spend a lot of time thinking about these lines of demarcation. One issue I struggle with is being aware and respectful of where responsibilities lie. It is incredibly simple for me to take on projects and problems that aren’t mine. Through (quite a bit of) therapy, it’s become easier to be aware of where others end and I begin.
As one therapist explained it, we act like pendulums. We’re at one extreme or the other. In this example, it’s taking on the entirety of a project versus not taking any of it at all. To get to the middle ground means aiming towards the other–oft incredibly uncomfortable–extreme. We must swing to the other side in order to find the balance in the middle.
“Existing in the space between” has been in my mind for a few days. I sip cherry lemonade, stare out the window at the junk in our backyard because we migrated it all over in front of my window during another project. I think about the boundaries around myself, the boundaries defining who and what I want to be. Life, they say, is a never ending struggle. There is no ending point throughout life. Yes, besides death, you sassy traveller.
We swing on our pendulums, seeking perfect balance. We can never reach perfection. Our growth exists within the space that surrounds what we are and where we want to be. It’s scary there, as though it is the cold reaches of space. It’s a place of the deep black of uncertainty, punctuated by the stars that are our goals. Do we have enough propulsion to get where we want to go? Will we be sidetracked by another star? Or sent askew by an unexpected asteroid?
I want to not be afraid of what awaits me in the sky. Yet another pendulum that I follow from one way to the next, never stopping.
This week, locate your stars. Let’s swing towards those goals, fair journeyers. Follow the light through the dark expanses, knowing that you get to decide in which direction you swing. And that this metaphor got a little complicated.