An Ordinary Disaster — chapter 28 — My Mother Was Not a Woman
“Since I was also running from my mother, who was not a woman, and I did not stop to ask her for her messages either, I had no idea what I wanted or needed in a woman—or how to love one. I didn't have that first example of what a woman was, and so, even though I came for love, I didn’t quite know what that was made of. Of course I ended up pursuing both love and sex with an addictive passion.”
Yes. 100%. Thank you for verbalizing so honestly and clearly.
A fascinating piece! I'm gonna chew on "my mother is not a woman" for a while. And those questions at the end will fuel my next journal session I do believe.
Lots to chew on here. There are elements of the vision quest in what you describe, that voluntary exile before reintegrating. It's the shape that comedy takes -- often regeneration in some "green place" before rejoining society. Strangely, I've never felt that solitude, especially in wilderness, made me *more* equipped for relationship with others. Walking off the grid, disappearing into the wild has its own siren song that often makes it difficult to be fully present in the thick of workaday life. I'm not sure Chris McCandless ever resolved that paradox. Sure, he had his epiphany about happiness only being real if it were shared, but if he'd been given the chance to live that out, I'm not sure he'd have been content abandoning his Alexander Supertramp identity altogether? Sorry to be a gadfly -- it's the professor in me.
I'm watching the reality series ALONE again, and there's a lot of this wrapped up in it. In nearly every season, someone voluntarily leaves because they realize that they've left what really matters behind. And often those people leave long before their body has given out, even before homesickness has consumed them. It's a rational choice -- I could do this, but I'd rather be doing that. The example makes me think about the difference between dependency and interdependence. These are people who are capable of existing alone, but they want to live their fullest life in relationship. Ironically, the people who really master the rules of survival in ALONE are perhaps the least equipped to reintegrate. And I'm sorry to say that I've always been one of those types.
I agree with you that only in the silence do we find ourselves.
I had to make my world very simple and quiet, and from that simplicity bubbled forth my true self.
Nicely written, thank you.
Whoops I was so excited to read the ordinary disaster piece and write what my history was like and my future there were typos - oh NO!!
I have of course had this same set of questions . My parents separated when I was 6 and my brother 4. My mother did not like living in New England and decided to leave , go back to Chicago where she was from. Somehow, I became a mother - well I know how but Zi was afraid I was going to follow along the same path. I did not - I raised to healthy , well balanced people of each gender.... I’m not a grandmother yet.... and NOW I’m ready to go to Chicago!!! That’s where I had gone to college so I about to go back next week to see family and friends !!