Envy – A useful emotion (from Weebly April 14/09)

So…accountability starts today…

I’m on holidays this week, taking a break and trying to get caught up on sleep, etc. My iron has been really low and I have had no energy so wanted to use this week to begin taking better care of myself.

I feel the need to start with something that happened to me the other day…I had a very huge feeling of envy.

A family friend has taken a year sabbatical from work to learn French and wanted it to live in a country where French was its native language to help his learning. He had done this once before when he was in his early twenties to learn Spanish.

So, he’s working in Togo, Africa for the first three months and then going to France for the last three months of his experience. In Africa, he’s teaching the native children English. I was checking out his website the other day and had these huge feelings of envy that I was very uncomfortable about. I have worked very hard to understand that other people’s good lives do not diminish mine in any way and I am usually very happy for people who are fulfilling their dreams.

But…the picture brought back long, lost feelings of a time when I was a teenager and wanted to work all over the world helping communities, being of service. There was not just one reason why I didn’t follow this dream. It could have been others “poo-pooing” my idea, my own fears, etc. And I was feeling that my lie now has many responsibilities: my house, my pets, my job, my loans, etc.

I was telling one of the Practitioners from my church about these feelings and she reminded me that I could still live that dream by having a working holiday (that wasn’t the term she used, but it’s what’s coming to my mind right now). Her mother had apparently done a two-week stint working in a community to be of service. This was a revelation for me and I was thankful that I could one day–when the time is right–take such a holiday.

Today, however, I realized something else. When I was a teenager I had a period of mental illness–no other way to put it. I had anxiety attacks and illogical thoughts of people trying to hurt me. There really was no way that I could have left my family for an extended period of time at that juncture in my life–I was not emotionally “fit”.

Now, however, I have done so much internal “work” and am so much stronger emotionally than I have ever been in my life I know that I could take a holiday and live/exist in another culture and just revel in it.

What the lesson is for me is just remembering how far I’ve really come specifically in these last thirteen years of personal growth.

It’s validation for a lot of things that I still would like to accomplish for myself such as releasing the weight I’ve added to my body over the past 15 years (over 150 lbs), and knowing that being in a loving relationship is something that I can finally give myself over to. There are a few other “things” but these two are major for me.

Thanks for being here!

C.

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