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  • Vicki Sontheim

Significantly Insignificant and the Beauty of I Don't Want To

I woke up this morning in a melancholic state. Not quite depressed, not overly self-critical, yet bordering on the two. What was this? I can’t say I was thrilled to wake up in this state and certainly felt some resistance to it. Not so much that I couldn’t stay present and curious, although I wasn't sure I wanted to.

Mikko and I went about our morning snuggles and did our stretches, I gave him his morning munchies and opened the door to let him outside. The colors of the sunrise in a clear blue sky filled with wispy cirrus clouds had almost dissipated. I took a moment to take in its beauty and noticed resistance to letting myself feel it.

I opened my sunroom shades, took a little special care and lingered in appreciation with each of my plants, turned the coffee on, and pointed myself in the direction of my A Course in Miracles practice (ACIM).

The sky and the beautiful wispy clouds which were floating by so gracefully caught my attention. You know those ones that turn into shapes and forms when you look at them with a soft gaze? I opened the shades all the way to take them in more, noticing again some resistance to allowing myself to take in and feel their beauty.

I sat down, and before opening my book, drifted off with the clouds for a few moments. I noticed how small and insignificant I felt in the greater scheme of things as I watched them go by. A few critical voices started entering my thoughts – “Who do you think you are? Why even try?” I didn’t try to talk myself out of them, rather I sat with my them and my feelings of resignation. Quietly, softly, a thought arose – “What if letting go of the need and striving to be significant opens space for significance to be?" I felt relieved, like the heavy pressure of needing to prove myself had been lifted, and with that a bit more spacious inside.

My mind wandered and rested briefly on the sadness of our world – war, political battles, racism, news stories which breed and play on our fears – and how our nervous systems are all tuned in to that even when we think we’re tuning out. I wondered, as I often do, about the effect this has individually and collectively on our tendency as humans to fight, run away, or shut down and tune out.

My thoughts turned to a familiar vision and I wondered how learning to tune into and be with the sadness, fear, hurt, and anger in ourselves, lovingly, until we settle enough to see and feel differently, could reshape how we go about settling our external affairs - how if we could shift what’s going on inside ourselves, we might be able to shift how we view and respond to what’s going on “out there.” What might a world look like where people feel safe and resourced to turn into inner and outer conflict with love and compassion?

The clouds were hypnotic. When I finally released myself from their graceful flow and turned my attention back to ACIM, a phrase stood out to me: “I was created as the thing I seek.” My solar plexus smiled and I felt validated in the knowing that striving to prove my significance in any way is my ego’s effort to deny the significance which is already inherent in my being.

Frodo barked at the door after a long night away from Mikko and me, and it was dog time! We fussed and rubbed, played and made growly noises, and the squeaker was set free from the fish taco. I blended into their happiness and excitement and for a few moments forgot all about the state I’d woken up in.

What was this state anyway? It wasn’t my grumblies. It wasn’t my sadness, or inner critic. What was this? It took a little while for my curiosity to be satisfied, and then aha! Another background singer showed herself! The part of me that doesn’t want to.

Doesn’t want to what one might ask? Anything. Anything at all. “Leave me alone! I don’t want to!” I don’t want to go the dentist or get new eyeglasses. I don’t want to go for a walk or do something that will make me feel better. I don’t want to be significant, or insignificant! I don’t want to write a blog, or send a newsletter, or do anything at all. “Just leave me the fu#& alone – I don’t want to!”

And so now, in this moment, I feel grateful for the opportunity to feel, embrace, and get to know yet another voice which has been hidden in the background of my body and mind. Like the squeaker from the fish taco, she’s been set free and I’m grateful to have her in my awareness.

I feel the beauty and significance of her long-ignored song. I am certain, as with any of the more hidden part of myself I uncover, that she will prove to be a great teacher and I look forward to knowing myself better. I will bring her with me, love her, and make space to not want to, and perhaps not do, as I go through my day – writing my blog, working on my newsletter, running my errands, and walking with Mikko.

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1 Comment

Nov 23, 2022

This is beautiful, Vicki. Thank you for sharing. We were created as the thing we seek. Ha! How simple. How perfect. I love Frodo and Mikko : )

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