Freedom’s just another word
Me and Bobby McGee-
“Freedom’s just another word for nothin’ left to lose
Nothin’, don’t mean nothin’ hon’ if it ain’t free…”
Those are great lyrics. But how does it relate to the world?
What baggage are we carrying that limits our freedom?
The answer for me is a feeling of a lack of self-worth. There is a persistent feeling that I must be ‘The Man’, the on-top-of-it person that can handle anything.
This isn’t always a bad thing. It has gotten me through some adversities either by convincing myself or convincing others that I can handle the situation. It has also put me into swamps that took me down and left me frightened.
The thing that I don’t lose is the self-stigma. The shame and guilt are constantly there, sometimes closer to the surface than others. But I am constantly aware that there are scars and open wounds and I don’t want to bleed on anyone.
I grew up in poverty, I deal with mental illness. I have never made much over minimum wage because the nature of my psychology makes me impulsive and easily bored. I also got sucked into the ‘easy money’ of personal loans with interest rates of 75 to 300%. It is hard to believe that I will ever get my financial life together and keep a roof over my head.
I don’t mean to whine. (‘facts is facts’, as they say.)
I do beat myself up over my situation and my self-stigmatization has kept me from really asking for help. It is VERY difficult to be weak and harder to appear weak. Asking for help is often futile and, on an emotional level, feels like being sealed in a small dark box with a cobra. (Don’t ask how I would know how that feels.)
Even writing about this is about the hardest thing that I’ve done without being in immediate physical duress. And, that was as a child.
Writing this here is an effort to relieve a bit of the madness and, possibly help someone else look at the effects of self-deprecation. We don’t have to believe the old voices in our heads. Or, better yet, I don’t have to believe them.
We get enough stigmatizing from ‘normal’ folks for whatever we believe is our problem or our truth. Don’t take on their opinions as our own.
Here’s to freedom!
Thank You for Reading
Dana Sanford ~ 1/15/2019