Know Thyself

Yesterday I was on the phone with one of my closest friends since I was 14... 20 years of friendship.  

We met in performing arts high school on day one in Theatre class. She's in my heart... she knows me... she's a part of my safe space.

For whatever reason, I decided to get out our year books from grades 11 and 12... and take photos (while on the phone with her mind you) of all the people we still know and are still in our crew, and send them to her while we spoke.

It had been a minute since I went through any of it. I found old ticket stubs from shows (both at school and outside of school), outfits that made us say "what were we thinking"... and our senior poll picks/pics.

You know the ones right? Best eyes, best smile... that type of stuff. 

I won most talented. At a performing arts high school. Which is kinda cool. (Actually... its really cool). But at the time I had no idea where that came from because I wasn't one of the kids who was walking around saying "Vote for Me!". 

Every category had a male and female... I was in the photo with a friend of mine from high school... who wanted to date me. Attractive, really intelligent, respectful, talented (obvi)... the kind of guy who brings you flowers after your performance and checks on you when you're sick. A really good guy.

I turned him down.

At the time I remember the attention (much like the senior poll) I didn't understand, nor did it feel comfortable.

I felt awkward getting praised... respect... or even love.

I was 17.

Back to yesterday... on the phone, my friend asked me why I never went out with that guy.... I said it for the first time with all the honesty in my heart... "I didn't know how to handle love coming in, so I turned away."

Bingo.

This dude, that poll, and my friend... they all saw something I didn't know even existed... that I was worthy and worth real love, real respect, and real attention.

Cut to today... I woke up this morning to find myself getting dressed, going to a Studio I love, to take a photo to announce that "I" will be a new teacher within it. 

The getting ready part and taking the picture... thats all fine and dandy... but what also happened was apparently not. 

Once I got to the studio, my co-worker asked if I wanted to grab coffee... at the coffee shop, walk in, see one of my favorite artist standing right in front of me... I say nothing.

I do say to my friends after he left "I think that guy is brilliant"... they look at me "why didn't you say anything"... " I don't wanna bother him".... "you wouldn't be bothering someone to tell them you think highly of them and their work."

Dude walked back in.... 

Gut check Lauren... do you think you're enough to walk up to this guy and not think that you're "bothering" him.

Do it.

And I did it. 

It was simple... the aftermath in my head, it was not.

My energy, maybe from the coffee, maybe from getting to see someone I admire in person... or maybe the awesomeness that the universe can play a part in making your dreams a reality.... I don't know... but the energy was building up.

We haven't even gotten to this photo... not the high school one... the other one... today's photo... it got posted... on social media... not just by me, but by others in the Studio.

The response.... love, positive, light, praise, support...

Me... Artist dude + praise + energy = full on panic attack.

My head got hot, the evil thoughts started to rage into it... loud, mean, flat out insulting... the complete opposite of the reality that was happening in front of me.

And this... this is where I thought about Mr. Talented and the Senior Poll and my feelings about it....

Know Thyself.

"Lauren... lay down."

Ok.

"What happened today?"

A lot of really good things.

"What's wrong?"

Nothing.

"Whats happening?"

I don't know.

"Lauren..."

I'm freaking out.

"Why?"

Because I'm a powerful creator and I wasn't as aware as everyone else, and even saying it is hard, and I don't know how I have become so lucky, and I'm really happy with how everything is going, and I'm getting nervous because the excitement is a lot and....

"Stop... this is what you do. Breathe, relax... repeat. Lauren... put down the phone... breathe, relax... repeat."

What that little Dialogue I just gave you is me, and my inner true self, like my good girlfriend on the phone... Knowing Thyself and wanting to run away from all that goodness coming in.

You see it happens all the time. We all do it. And I wonder if you ever really grow out of it, or if you become more skilled to deal with it.

I'm making a choice to live in the happiness (writing that is hard... honestly), even though my old habits want to take me down, I'm fighting to choose the better choice for myself.

But I now Know Thyself, and this moment of discomfort isn't bad, wrong, old shit, self sabotage... this is just a part of me.

And thankfully now... I know how to treat it with all the love in the world.

And I'm also saying a big THANK YOU to life and the universe for all the good its bring in. Keep it coming. 

I challenge you to make me more uncomfortable with all the goodness that is in store!

All my love to you all (and to you Lauren), 

LP