Living Inside Out

via Daily Prompt: Interiorly

I’ve always lived inside out. My inside hasn’t always been content, mindful and in agreement with my purpose though.

I came from a home with talented people, but with emotionally scarred people too. My mother was a holy terror and constantly had the family in an uproar about something or other. She seemed to strongly dislike us all and there were only two of us from the time I was 13.

At a very young age, still a toddler, I remember my parents fighting. I would hide behind my closed bedroom door and be frightened. Then I would try to make Mom laugh. She would cuddle me from time to time but mostly I didn’t get enough love. I’m not sure if that’s my problem or if it was her’s.

I went inside to escape from my environment. I read everything I could get my hands on from the moment I learned to read. I read the encyclopedia if I had nothing else to read. I borrowed books from the library, spent every dollar of my allowance on either shoes or books (I love shoes) and managed to escape into a life of wonder.

When I was 17 I was hospitalized for mononucleosis on the day I was supposed to go register for college. I was heartbroken. Mom brought me a book by Mary Stewart – I think it was Nine Coaches Waiting. After that, I read everything Mary Stewart wrote except the Arthur legend books.

As I got older, depression started to dog my tracks. Particularly in college, I couldn’t get past the cloud of doom that hovered over me. I left school and spent years in therapy, on medication and trying to get back some form of a life.

Eventually, between my social worker and I, I discovered that a lot of my problems hinged on the way my mother treated me. I was never good enough in her eyes. When I would be boastful about making straight A’s, she would tell me not to be so proud of myself. Why should I? Well nobody else got those straight A’s! Particularly her as she didn’t finish high school and was a mediocre student. I guess that was it. Not sure at all what her point was, but with my child, I made sure that each step that was a positive step would be honored.

So I stayed inside. I don’t socialize much, actually not at all. I find being with other people takes too much time away from what I do. Like living my spiritual path, creating art, knitting and living mindfully. I don’t need to be entertained and I don’t want to do things that take time away from my life. My life lived inside. It is rich in there.

Now I am in a place that it has taken 65 years to get to. I am content, I am mindful, I am inside, but I am inside with God, Sri Lord Krishna. When I need to be reminded of my wonderful life, I practice Bhakti Yoga, the yoga of chanting. Krishna Das’s voice leads me from outside to the inside. I am at peace.

I found my truth. I found the light on my inside. My interior is glowing with  recognition of the One.