THE DESTINY OF A JEDI
By: Lauren Anderson
So, I recently started recording this podcast called “Wrong About Everything” (Shameless plug! But you can find it on all major podcast outlets! Wink!) It’s a political podcast featuring two republicans and two democrats talking about the week’s news etc.
Except it’s “funny” and everyone on the podcast are actually friends. Despite our political differences.
The very first show I recorded was right after the death of General Soleimani. Everyone on the panel was talking political strategy and whatnot, and when it came to my turn to chime in, all I could really say was basically, “I’m scared.”
I admitted my fear on the podcast. Because I think the looming threat of war is scary! And mob-retaliation is scary! And the whole business of it all is scary.
And I am not above admitting that I have fear. Because this is a natural response to this right?
But then no one joined in on my fear. They heard me. They agreed it could be scary. But no one else admitted that that they too, were scared. Not at least while we were recording.
The rest of my week went on like this as well.
I went to therapy and we talked about maybe starting a harder section of memories in the EMDR process. I quickly started talking about everything else I could think of, and telling old wild stories from high school.
My therapist listens, and when I’m done she goes, “Well, that was a great story, and I’m glad I got to hear it, but I get the sense that you might be stalling.”
She got me. That’s exactly what I was doing. I was stalling with stories because I was AFRAID to begin the work that– if I’m being honest– probably brought me to therapy in the first place.
She asked, “Why do you think you’re stalling?” And I responded, “Because I’m afraid. I’m scared of what we’ll discover. I’m afraid of going through it all again. Even though I know it will be better once we do, it’s hard to begin because I’m scared of the work.”
Here I was, admitting my fear again.
Then later on in the week I’m lamenting to my friend about how messy my apartment has gotten YET AGAIN, and that I can’t seem to bring myself to clean it up.
She goes, “What do you think is holding you back from cleaning it?” And I respond, “Because I’m scared.” She rightly asks, “Of what?” And I honestly say, “I don’t know? Maybe because it feels too daunting. Maybe it’s because I keep letting my apartment get destroyed which probably means it’s correlated to an emotional state I’m in.”
We just sat with that for a while. Because I was being really honest. I knew the moment it came out of my mouth that this was the reason.
And I don’t know about any of you, but when my life gets crazy so does my apartment. I’ve heard the saying before, “Your physical space represents your emotional space” er… something like that.
But there’s that Fear thing again. Bouncing into the conversation when it’s supposed to be about literally ANYTHING ELSE. So what’s up with that?
And this is just the tip of the iceberg! I haven’t even mentioned yet the near constant fear I carry around when it comes to talking about or dealing with my body. STILL! Even after all this time, and all the things I’ve accomplished and learned.
For as far as I’ve come– and boy I’ve come a long way baby! When I don’t have successes that I can easily write about, I fear that I’m letting the people that read this blog (all of you) down.
And then I’m afraid I’m letting myself down.
I’m afraid that I look like a fraud, or that I should be “farther along” by now, or that people are sick of hearing about my “journey with my body” because I should have it together by now dammit!
I’m even scared that people are secretly laughing at me because I still think this shit is hard, or even making fun of me for being so fearful!
AHHHHHH! Is there no end to this? How did I get so afraid? Why am I scared of so many things?
Because the truth is– if I’m being really frickin honest– is that I’m scared a lot. Like more than I wish I was certainly. But am I really MORE SCARED THAN EVERYONE ELSE?
Or… OR… Am I just more willing to admit it?
This is odd I thought. But not out of the ordinary. Because I think admitting fear is a hard thing to do. Because once I admit that fear is there, I am forced to come face to face with it.
And take it from the resident fear expert, I don’t have to face my fear if I don’t acknowledge it’s there. Instead, fear gets to be anything else. Anger, malaise, agitation, mania. Oh yeah. When I don’t name my fear, it’s still there, only wearing a very cunning disguise.
AND THEN I SAW STAR WARS. (may contain spoilers)
In the last movie, Ray (the main character) has to face her fear in order to fulfill her destiny. And I don’t wanna say who in case you haven’t seen it, but she gets some really good advice about being a Jedi.
The quote goes, “Confronting fear is the destiny of a Jedi… your destiny.”
When this part happened in the movie, I started to cry. Like, harder than I should. Lots of parts of that movie made me tear up, but this part spoke to me deep down in the sinews of my body.
Maybe… just maybe… I’m not more afraid than everyone else.
MAYBE….I’M A FUCKING JEDI?!?!
The whole thing started to inspire me and make me feel better.
Think about it, Jedi’s are these great warriors for good right? And they must overcome rigorous training and trials and tribulations in order to come into their full power. In order to connect to the universe.
Jedi’s are not WITHOUT FEAR. They are not without setbacks.
No no! They have fear, and they train and train and train so they can eventually face it. By admitting my fear easily, I am saying this is a challenge I face. And I am capable of naming it, AND facing it.
That may seem small, but that is progress. And maybe the fact that I’m willing to admit my fear on a podcast, or in this blog, and to myself, means that I am one step closer to fulfilling my “Jedi” destiny.
I’m on the right path. Even though it is long, and full of things to test my strength.
The mark of a Jedi is not to be without fear. Because I believe fear, just like anger, or sadness, or joy– teaches you about what you love.
It will teach me about myself, if I choose to listen.