blast from the past: the curse of capability…
June 5, 2012
from July 28, 2008
wish I knew who took this amazing picture so I could credit
The ant…I understand this tiny being. It is said they can carry 10, 20 and even 50 times their own body weight. This makes them very remarkable. I’ve been at war with whole colonies in my kitchen lately and yet sometimes I just watch in awe. So many of them, working so hard, carrying so much. I can kind of relate.
It seems I have acquired, inherited, been gifted, whatever you want to call it, the curse of capability. I can carry and juggle quite a bit before I drop anything or things fall apart. Maybe it is some inner self value I’ve held on to, at the very least to try, give everything I have, keep carrying on. Withholding any bit of myself feels like withholding my love.
While this is usually a good thing and has served me well, in the wrong circumstances it can be disastrous. My vision of wants and needs gets all meshed together with both strangers and people I love. All I can see in every room is need, the kind that is as plain as the nose on your face and the tiny one hiding behind your heart. It all looks like need to me, it’s hard to distinguish want.
But when I find myself alone in a room with my own need, an awkward conversation ensues.
“Hey Need, how’s it goin’, I’m patience.” we shake hands and I shift in my seat nervously.
Need stares at me, we sit in silence….”Okay, I’m going to be heading out now, nice meeting you.”, while I make a beeline for the door.
I rarely ever see want, I’ve heard of her but she feels more like a rockstar that rolls into town ever so often, the concerts and hotel parties are amazing but feel indulgent.
I start to wonder about this part of myself as life unravels around me. I wonder just because I can do something, does it mean I should do it? I start to imagine what might happen if I put my load down for just a minute. I’m learning to allow space to find out. Maybe there are more ants like me, ones I haven’t even met yet. The kind that know when and how much to pick up and don’t carry a curse.
The interesting thing about curses is they only have power if you give it to them. They seem big and overwhelming but mostly they just like you to feed them. They die when the power is cut off and taken back.
So today I sit longer with Need and try to get to know her. I invite Want to come over and play, we eat brownie sundaes and lay around together. I tell the curse I have nothing to offer him today, he leaves in a huff and I return to watch the ants.