Friday, July 13, 2012

Outside-Inside Mismatch

One day I reminded my granddaughter, then 4, not to climb up to the tree house if a big person wasn't right there. Her reply to my question, "Do you know what will happen if you fall?" was "My body would come all apart." This, of course, was followed by snuggles we each needed at the thought of that.

When your outside 'comes apart' to any extent, it's pretty obvious to all. But, what about your inside? Raised in a dysfunctional family, where my role included keeping a calm exterior for the sake of others, did much to condition me to do the same through my decades as a nurse. Obviously, what you say to parents of a critical baby can't be the same as the way freaked out words in your mind. A mismatch, to be sure. It's freeing in many ways to be out of these roles today. But, I am what I am.

Daily life stresses, large and small, are not always evident on my outside, and others continue to look to me for calm. I don't see this as a bad thing, because keeping others level helps me to do the same. But, if the stress goes on and on, my inside starts to come apart, something has to give. Recently, that thing was my writing. Not good for my outside or my in.
my inner Maggie

I'm working on my personal mismatch, trying my best to keep my inner Maggie happy. I need to write in the same way I need to eat and sleep. It's that important.

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