If you read the title of this post and thought, ”Wow, this is a must read because she’s discovered the miracle solution to weight loss!” you may be disappointed. The 10 pounds to which I refer are not of the physical kind but, more so on an emotional level.
Yes, this is an emotional baggage post. Well, actually, it’s more about letting go of emotional baggage.
So, this common “baggage” thing that we human beings have. From where I stand, smack dab in the middle of life, everyone has baggage. Whether it’s wallet sized, can be folded neatly & carried in your carryon, or you need a big ole’ garbage truck to haul it away … it’s there. It could be something that you’re dragging around from childhood, like me, or it’s something that you’ve picked up along your life’s journey. Maybe your parents did something to you, or your spouse, a childhood friend or maybe something that was self-inflicted because you made a mistake or didn’t know any better. Either way, baggage is baggage, it doesn’t matter why it’s there. It’s there, and it’s dragging you down. Let’s change that.
So that I’m being honest with others, and myself, about this topic, I will say that my baggage has been going everywhere with me for the past 42 years. Sometimes, I was able to put it down and run away thinking that I left it behind but, that damn baggage had great radar and fast little legs and was always able to find & catch up to me again. I’d put in some work to get rid of it then wake up one day after thinking that I’d ditched it and that mo’fo would be moved right back to gnawing on my soul. Ahh….God damned baggage. You know the feeling right? You think, “I’ve kicked it to the curb” but, then you suddenly find that it’s back & glued to you like bark on a tree. Ugh, so annoying.
Many of us don’t want to deal with our baggage because, well, it’s too hard. It’s much easier to stuff it down ….waaay down and act like it’s not there. We make great effort to build a wall up around it –if we’re 5 feet tall, well then that wall needs to be made 10 or even 11 feet tall. Nothing is getting over that damn wall … nothing, either in OR out.
A whole crap load of us seem happy to blame other people for our baggage. Someone did this or that, said this or that, or even didn’t do this, that or the other. It’s all their fault so, I’ll just blame them, carry on being miserable because ‘the devil you know’, right? And shit, it’s just easier than dealing with it.
And maybe our baggage is too big or too heavy or too hard to move. And…AND…get ready for this … what if people KNEW about our baggage? Holy shit, would other people with baggage judge or dislike us for letting our dirty laundry out of said emotional storage compartment. Especially people who supposedly love us … what if they knew this GIANT thing about us and stopped loving us. Then what would we do?
Well, what if, just what if, all of this worry and fear was for nothing and the BS that we’ve been convincing ourselves about rejection was untrue? What if none of the things that you’ve had packed away, hidden, disguised and stored really weren’t that big of a deal to let go of at all? What if you told people who loved you about the things that you’ve done, said, experienced, lived through, told yourself, worried about weren’t that big of a deal at all? What if you haven’t given others enough credit and they already know about all of your dark, yukky stuff and they’ve been loving you right through it all all of this time & you didn’t even know it? What if they have their own dark, yukky stuff and you don’t care about that because you just love them for the good, funny, loving, caring person that they are now?
This past week, I was really pushed. I was pushed by someone who loves me but, couldn’t take trying to climb the wall any more … and I was given an ultimatum. Not in these exact words but, basically: “The baggage or me” was the message. And I panicked…and almost ran. Because running was easier than climbing to the other side of the wall that I had built around my emotional self to keep others out and keep my protected self in. Putting in the work of cracking the lock on my baggage and letting my laundry fly all willy-nilly over the place was too scary.
So, there I sat. With a choice to make. Ready to figure out a new path to avoid crushing said wall and revealing the ugly truth, I’d done it many, many times before, of course. I’d just shut down emotionally, cut the tie & move on and repeat the same old pattern … at 49 years old … no problem. OR …the scary alternative – it’s time to stop running, borrow Thor’s hammer and go after the wall. Ugh, I don’t know if I’m ready.
After talking to a close, non-judgmental friend (if you have judgmental friends … ditch them NOW!), she helped me to see that with billions of people in the world, many dealing with much bigger life problems, my baggage was SO small in comparison. It was gigantic to me but, in truth, I realized, this shitty baggage that I’m dragging around means absolutely nothing in the big scheme of life. And most of why it was there wasn’t even my fault anyway so, why was I hanging onto it for dear life? The Great Emotional Wall of Protection was no longer serving me, it was now hurting me.
So, I made the decision. Time to stop running. I opened the door and let all of the baggage fly out. How scary, I thought I might die.
And do you know what happened? It was emotional & messy and there were questions and answers. And I lost 10 pounds.
10 pounds of emotional baggage dropped off of me in one day.
Just. Like. That.
I walked by the mirror the next morning, not yet realizing that I’d lost the 10, and thought to myself, ”Wow, I look like I lost some weight.” And then, it hit me. The wall and the baggage had been defeated…and everything was ok. And I was SO much lighter.
So, if you’re ready to unload the baggage or blast through the wall, find a trusted friend to talk it out with. If you don’t have someone, I’ll be your support. I’m not going to say that losing the emotional 10 pounds will be easier than losing a physical 10 pounds but, is your being happy at your souls level worth the effort? Yes, it is!
And, trust me, once that 10 pounds of baggage is gone, you won’t be in a hurry to gain it back.
How do you want to weigh in on the topic of emotional baggage?