Self Reflection: Beirut’s fingerprints

I’ve begun writing the Wrap Up on Beirut and I realize I’m not ready to do it just yet. It’s really too heavy for me to deal with at the moment, and I’m currently more inclined to deal with me than I am to deal with politics. Sorry.

But, I finally responded to each and every one of your emails and I thank you for all of them.

While in Beirut being a scardey cat working, I thought it was the ideal time to engage in a most exhausting personal battle.

The only words I can use to describe me are ‘reckless’ and ‘defensive’ emotionally, and until Beirut happened, I never realized just how reckless I am, and how the bizarre flipside of that is the reality that I am, in fact, completely defensive. It plays itself out in a strange script where I equal parts open myself up completely, while setting up a situation in a way that ensures it will fail (& where I don’t set it up myself, I look for the situation that’s already set up in that manner).

Not that I aim for failure, but rather that should ‘circumstance’ dictate failure, then it’s not a reflection on me but on circumstance. I remain intact and safe and secure and can blame the situation alone.

I’ve always understood that I’d much rather live hard and feel and hurt equally hard, than to be numb. Isn’t that where we were?

But clearly, I’m only willing to engage hurt when I’ve inflicted it by my own hands (e.g. not me giving 100% percent to something good and healthy and then having it fail; but, rather me giving 100% to something meant to break down, hence me actually seeking it out).

And for the record, although I don’t know what this does mean, I do know it doesn’t mean that I don’t want something to succeed, and it doesn’t mean I don’t want things to work out. It’s sort of messy, but to a great extent, it allows me a semblance of control and order in an otherwise messy situation. Engage in and expect failure, and when you fail to receive failure and instead receive success, then even better…

In other speak, this means my willingness (& affinity) for taking really stupid risks. Did I not have the cultural and religious graces of my family, my risks taken would be much greater. This is somewhat of a double-edged sword for although it’s kept me safe from much, it’s also held me back from so much more.

Anyway, what I haven’t been able to understand is where the defensiveness comes in. I’ve been thinking a lot about this in the past couple of weeks and I’m happy I’ve figured out the first half, because I like that half. I actually enjoy being reckless. What I need now is a means to understand where and why the defensiveness kicks in and how to ensure I stop allowing it to be a part of my life. Because ultimately, I’m still getting hurt even though it is by my own hand, so I think that it’s time for me to stop being defensive. I think I’ve hit a new level of maturity and I’m really looking forward to engaging it and those around me based on this new principle.