Prince Update ~ 22 January 2014: “Clarity supports connection”
In the photo with the caption, it’s clear that Prince is where he wants to be, at that time. In fact, hours later, he’s still on the comforter yet I dragged it on “this” side of the gate so it could be closed as it makes it easier for Blaze not to get lost when moving around at night.
I had someone ask me today what I wanted in a particular situation. What was interesting is that this person had no clarity for themselves of what they wanted. Hence, the conversation started with this person saying that they wanted “xyz” which wasn’t anything really about them; their comments were more about me. When I didn’t respond in a fashion this person wanted, over time what they said they wanted was in complete contrast to what they initially said, mere minutes beforehand.
It was all quite perplexing and confusing until I got some space between the conversation and time to think. Then it struck me .. this person wanted me to tell them what I wanted, so they could adapt what they wanted to what I said. Thus, giving away all of their personal power.
We all do this. Inevitably what happens over time is that then when things don’t go the way we want, we can disclaim any responsibility … if we CHOSE what the other person said they wanted. Thus, we reaffirm that we are the victim, powerless over what happened.
I’ve observed in myself and others that often we know exactly what we want .. such as, who has gone out when they wanted to stay home? I’m sure I’m not the only one. We didn’t want to engage the discussion around, “I’m really in the mood to stay home; and I know you want to go out.” What happens as a result? We ended in confusion, arguments; we often shut down.
When asked a difficult question, how many people answer with “I don’t know” when their truth is known to them, yet they want to avoid conflict? Here’s my favorite example I’ve observed .. husband is not coming home on time. So, he either doesn’t say so or lies about when he’s leaving. Shows up a few hours later than expected, and a fight ensues. More often than not, the focus is now on the reaction to the unexpected arrival hours later.
I’ve heard countless times from people, “I didn’t want to deal with the response so I just lied or avoided the topic”. What happens? The reaction or response is exponentially greater than if we had merely provided the known truth. Of course, there are times such as might involve physical safety, when sharing our known truth is not the best idea at the time. Yet, those times, for most, are few and far between.
Prince has given me amazing lessons in clarity; with the end result often physical. He is QUITE clear when he doesn’t want something to eat .. he turns his head away, puts it down, etc. It’s the time when I push, that I’ve gotten bitten. In fact, my latest bite has turned into an open sore … such a wonderfully tangible reminder of how important clarity is .. and then respecting the clarity of another.
All of this begs an interesting question … when another being provides clarity, why do we not accept it? It is possibly because most of us have become so accustomed to living in a world filled with ambiguity and “fuzzy answers” that we don’t recognize clarity when it’s provided? Or, perhaps we don’t believe the other being is clear on what they want. Or, perhaps we just don’t want to accept their truth.
All of this starts internally with OURSELVES. We can’t provide clarity to another until we know what our own truth is.
What does it take for us to see the truth for ourselves; then admit it to ourselves; then accept our own truth. Perhaps if we started there and started providing clarity to others, we could then begin to accept what others say as their truth, even when we think they aren’t seeing and/or saying their own truth. Even if we know they are lying, we accept what the other person says as truth, and then let them live with the consequences of their words and actions, versus taking on the responsibility for others.
I’m confident Prince has not lost any thought or sleep over my dominant hand index finger which has now been bit three times in a month or so. Another element of clarity is asking for clarification and/or reflecting back what you heard someone say. This might sound like, “I want to make sure I heard what you said in the way you meant it. I believe I heard you say you don’t want anything else to eat tonight. Did I hear that correctly? Was there something else you wanted me to hear?”
All of this can sound formal at first, yet there’s a simplicity and inherent power of clarity, and connecting around clarity. I love looking up definitions. In this case, clarity. I especially appreciate this language, “…. freedom from indistinctness or ambiguity.”
WOW …. so having clarity might give us authentic freedom. Let that sink in a bit. Prince’s clarity for the night so far is at 12:37 a.m. he does NOT want to be in bed with me. I am resisting the urge to go check on him. He did eat tonight a bit of hamburger and bacon bits; he hasn’t vomited it up. Yet, he’s beginning to drool more and more.
I feel like a helicopter mom, wanting to keep checking on him. Yet, because I respect him as a living being, I’m going to trust he is making his own choices. When or if he’s ready tonight, he’ll come to bed.
In the meantime, my truth is that I am scared and sad when he’s not coming to bed with me. I get afraid something might happen, and I won’t be there to “save” the situation.
Those two truths, his and mine, seems inconsistent. They aren’t. We each have our own truth that can co-exist at the same time.
My choice is how I respond to what the situation is, and to how I’m feeling. I think I won’t stuff my feelings anymore tonight. So, I’m going to go listen to Kate Bush’s “Running Up That Hill” another dozen times or so; let myself cry. Then, maybe we’ll see if Prince comes to bed. If not, I may do a quick check in on him. In the meantime, Missy is here with me. <3 <3