Sunday, January 22, 2017

Leap of Faith vs Having Faith

Taking a leap of faith is something I'm familiar with. Taking a deep breath and doing something frightening, something that makes me nervous or anxious, or putting myself out there by making a big gesture - these things are well-trodden territory to me.

When I am afraid of something, say a film, I'll watch it or immerse myself in it until I'm not afraid of it anymore. Fear can be debilitating, it can freeze you, make you sweat and make you run from things or fail to experience them. I've been called brave for doing things that seem scary to other people - I don't think that I am necessarily braver than most. What I am is determined and what I don't do is, if I can help it, let fear stop me from living my life and doing what is important to me. Sure there are some things that I will always be afraid of and will never be able to conquer no matter how hard I try. Fear can delbilitate and freeze me just as much as anyone if I let it. 

But when I can help it I will do my best to ensure that it doesn't stop me; over and over again in life I have taken leaps of faith that have been scary at the time but so unbelievably rewarding in the long run. And yet there are also times when it isn't rewarding, or it results in pain and failure - that's life. The important thing is I always put my heart on the line and I take the leap in the first place despite what could go wrong.

What I am not is patient or particularly the best at 'keeping' of 'having' faith. 

I'm a dillentante in a lot of ways, fickle and tempestuous. I change my mind all the time, I get paranoid and yes fear takes over when my leap of faith does result in failure. I can't help the way I am.

It is a problem, though, and I can't continue to live this way forever. 

I have issues when it comes to having faith in romance. I am far too easily hurt, I'm overly sensitive and I am distrustful. I have been hurt in the same way more than once, and plenty of other times in other ways as well. I have always wanted to meet someone and form a relationship but I never realised until now how unbelievably stunted I am in my ability to do so - I have let my scars and fears debilitate me. I have never noticed before because my fears are realised, but what happens if this time I am just letting worry get in the way? 

Over the years I've developed an issue with inferiority, insecurity and lack of self worth. That means that I, because of what has happened to me in the past, struggle to trust and have faith that someone could want to be with me. Not because I don't think that I am amazing, that I am worthy and that I am a good person. No, I think it because I have been cultivated to feel by my past experiences that I am second best, that I am not worth putting the effort into to be with and that I am not enough. Complete bollocks, logically I know. But subconsciously I have been so hurt I can't trust or simply have faith that I am worth everything and that someone will put in the effort to stay with me.  

This is what has been brought to my attention this week, and this is what I want to work on now. It's like an illness, it will eat away at me for the rest of my life if I don't address it now and I don't work towards fixing it. I am not broken, I am not ruined and I am not so far gone that I cannot come back from this. 

It will be hard, and I have been this way a while - made worse each year - but I have to do this or I will never be able to be happy even if I am with someone. 

I came to this realisation this week after fear and paranoia made me blow up at my unofficial thing. Emotion running high and logic taking a backseat I gave into the fear that the reason for him not making anything official with me was because I wasn't enough. Just like so many others had done to me in the past, I fear that he is biding his time with me until either someone better comes along or he gets tired of me. Using me, lying to me, and leaving me once again to pick up the pieces afterward.  

I blurted my feelings, my fears and had it out. I showed him the door to leave if that's what he'd wanted, and yet for once (as in regards to previous romances) he not only stayed but made the effort to assure me that things would be ok. No one has ever done that to me before - they've usually either not bothered to reply to me, or if they have then they only considered themselves and what they wanted. Never how I felt, what I wanted or tried to make me feel ok where I was. 

Logic, when it did return, pointed out the not-so obvious in reminding me that things were not necessarily as they seemed no matter how much my fear and hurt over another repeat was weighing on me. The reality was for once someone really was telling me the truth in that they were not yet ready to progress - and not because of me. Logic told me to actually look at the facts: 

- Just like I, he had been hurt before and recently (very recently) which still required time to recover. I was being unfair, not particularly understanding, selfish and impatient. 
- He had said before that I had come along too fast and too serious than anticipated; that can be frightening and can shake people, which I am one to know. 
- He had been given an out, a run down of what I want and how I felt, and had still cared enough to assure me that what I was jumping to the conclusion of what wasn't the case. 
- I was assuming despite everything he said and did, and ignoring his personality in the process. I assumed that he couldn't have really cared because this, this and that. 

The real issue wasn't that he didn't want to be with me, it was that he wasn't ready to be with me in any greater capacity than he currently is. Not because he found me lacking but because I turned up barely a month after his last relationship went sour, he was still hurting, things with me were more serious and real than anticipated much too quickly, he was not ready to put his heart on the line again, and yet did not want to leave either. The truth of the matter genuinely may be that he isn't in the state of mind to be with me right now - he in fact may never be. But the point is that both he and I are afraid, scarred by our past, which leads me to worrying more so than I should when what I really need to focus on is having some faith. 

I never realised how hard I found it to have faith, how distrusting and jaded I had become, how ruined I was by my past, how much I want to fix this part of myself, and how much I really care about this person that I want to do this for him as much as myself. 

We may never work but this is real enough to me that I want to try and in doing so be patient enough, have enough faith, that I won't take off at the first sign of not having what I want. That he won't just ditch me for someone else because I'm not good enough. Fear can't just control me like this anymore, not when I know that I work so hard to overcome my fears in other aspects of my life. 

It's not the clearest or easiest fear to overcome but I'm on it already. Immersion, meditation, patience and reminding myself to have faith is going to get me through - for me. Irrespective of what happens in the future I can't move on until I can overcome this lack of security and inferiority complex that I've developed. 

Sam xox 

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