In a word, this site is about exploration. I’ve been an explorer, in one form or another, whether I was aware of it or not, for my entire life. I used to think of myself as a searcher and on a quest of some sort. Maybe I was. But now those terms don’t feel quite right anymore. In those days I was looking for something I thought I needed in order to be OK. Something outside of myself that I could take hold of and use to make up for some lack in me.
Today I like the word explore better. Exploration is a process that needs no goal other than itself. When I looked up the word explore in a thesaurus I found words like study, investigate, survey, and terms like look at, and delve into. That’s what I’m doing now, not because I need to be fixed or made whole, but because I want to learn and understand things as they are.
By some standards I haven’t had the easiest life, at least not in terms of feeling OK, but I’ve always managed to have a job and therefore a roof, a meal, and a bed. I’ve never been seriously wanting for anything in terms of my survival or physical comfort and safety. And compared to many it’s been a life filled with blessings. After all, it brought me to this place and time in my life that I wouldn’t trade for anything. For that I am very grateful. But it wasn’t without struggle, and at times often more than was actually needed.
I’ve learned a lot about myself along the way. How things that happened affected me, how I chose to respond/react, what I believed about what was happening and about myself, what I believed others were thinking about me, and what I believed being OK would actually look and feel like. That was the exploration, and still is. The difference being I now can do it while being OK rather than in order to become OK.
Along the 64 years I have been exploring, I have uncovered some talents, inclinations, preferences, prejudices and values, combined in a way that is uniquely my own. Being OK with this constellation of personal characteristics, exactly as they are today, is how I realize my purpose in life and consequently my healing.
One question that has always played an over-sized role in my life is “Who the hell do I think I am?” It started as a defense, became a judgement, and now is my exploration. It will necessarily always remain a work in progress, because that’s also what I am.
p.s. I will start by focusing on what is most immediate in my world right now, and that is my recovery from childhood sexual abuse and my advocacy to get the Child Victims Act passed in New York State.