I am blind when it comes to myself.
Why can I see others but cannot see me?
The thoughts of a madman?
To stand in front of a mirror and try to see me
What path lies in wait
How many corners must I turn before I find it?
How far ahead will the next corner be
And what is around it?
So the illusion erodes and another appears:
The path ahead is the one I am on,
And whatever may be around the corner
There will also be me.
But I am blind when it comes to myself.
I wrote that 11 years ago, and it’s as true today as it was then. I may have broken free of a life that caused me blindness and yet still I struggle to separate my identity from one that is created from the external around me – other people, where I am, what I am doing. I am a chameleon, I absorb and reflect. I fit in, I listen, I observe, I engage, I participate, I partake, I behave, I misbehave, I mope, I enthuse, I energise. And all the time I fail to see me clearly. I do not wish to see myself through the eyes of another but my own eyes are so very biased and clouded by years of living with my Self, of the influences of thousands of experiences, comments, actions, reactions, instruction, teachings, fears, hopes, aspirations, disappointments, hurt. Instinct so often is drowned out by this nurture and is replaced by the unconscious instinct which has been carefully honed over the years which reflects what I think rather than what I am.
My self-blindness is all the more acute because I see others clearly, it is mostly straightforward to follow my instinct when it comes to anyone or thing that is not me. Somehow the filters of outpouring self-emotion are bypassed, but look inward and the one-way valves kick into operation, brick walls apparate and the way gets lost. I am a harsh self-critic, I don’t give my Self much credit, I fail to see achievements, I highlight home goals, I wonder why why why, I think think think, I conform, I rebel, I worry, I care. Despite all my consciousness I still trip up daily, stumble on a blatant stepping stone, bang my head against the wall that I can walk around. I don’t think I do enough. Who I am is always enough and I forget this over and over again every hour.
I am grateful for my life and feel I don’t act that way. I am apathetic, I am lazy, I am self-motivated and de-motivated, I am questioning, I am selfish, I am pragmatic, I am headstrong, I am considerate, I am stubborn, I am a contradiction of many facets, I mean well, I do good, I hurt, I am honest, I am knowledgeable, I am perceptive, I am blind.
I do not always feel this way it’s true. It is transitory, caused by change, by evolution and development at times when I do not know what I want, quite lost in fact, but on the path nonetheless and trusting blindly as I forge ahead.