Thursday, April 21, 2016

Hello there, friend,

Being fully alive is interesting to think about. I think it means that we engage wholly with our life and our whole self, whether what we're experiencing is positive or negative. Of course, experiencing joy and gratitude for the good in our lives makes us feel fully alive. But what about the hard, painful experiences? Can we be fully alive in those too?

What you say about having a negativity bias is true, so perhaps we do feel very alive in those painful moments. Or maybe we have a tendency to try to numb ourselves out of those feelings, just as we have a tendency to ignore the positive in favor of the negative. I remember a podcast where Ali Edwards talked about wanting to "feel the length and the width" of her feelings as she went through her divorce. She didn't want to shy away from the pain, but tried to feel her feelings, whatever they were.

I struggle with all of this. I struggle with it every single day. Living out the choices we've made can be so hard. It's easy to jump in; it's hard to walk it out. But in this middle ground, each step of this journey, I want to feel the length and the width. I want to feel my feelings, be present in my body, and accept that this is living. This is it.