I grew up in a world that offered up a choice on how to live my life.
I was taught that I must make a choice: Freedom or Connection
Choosing freedom meant adventure and excitement, but a lack of deep human connection.
Choosing connection meant security, love and meaning, bounded by duty and commitment.
It took me so long to learn how these were both lies.
It took me years to realize that it is not only possible, but our birthright to have BOTH!
But first, I chose connection:
Security was purchased one piece of me at a time. As long as I was willing to keep selling parts of my soul, I was ‘secure.’ It was the security of a kitchen appliance, that ended as soon as my usefulness ended.
Love was a continual self-delusion. As long as I was useful to someone, I felt I had meaning, and could therefore be ‘loved.’ I had to learn that love is not something that is found outside of oneself. Institutions such as marriage, religions or relationships do not provide love. Until I discovered how to love myself, I was wasting my time.
Duty and commitment were simply the social chains forged to keep me locked in place. My own integrity was harnessed to control me.
So then I chose freedom:
Except I didn’t. Freedom isn’t doing the opposite of what religion and society said was acceptable. Freedom isn’t catering to whims. Freedom isn’t unfocused action taken in reaction to past trauma. There is no adventure in reckless actions. Excitement isn’t the same thing as the dull terror of self-destructive activity.
As long as we hold both of these states of being as separate, we will fail.
I see this sick see-saw all around me. People tire of ‘freedom’ devoid of meaning and dive into relationships lacking authenticity trying to find ‘connection.’ Tired of trying to be someone they are not, they then jump back into ‘freedom.’ The back and forth continues, in environments ripe with abuse and trauma. This pattern holds until they are worn out, sometimes finding themselves stuck in a constant state of triggering. Helpless and hopeless.
The truth is, when it comes to freedom and connection, we cannot have one without the other. We can have both, or we can have neither.
Freedom comes by discovering who we are…
…first, by removing the layers and masks, trauma and dysfunctional scripts, everything that we are NOT. It takes time and effort to undo the distortions of living in a distorted society, but by following our nature as it beckons to us, never giving up on ourselves, we can again be reunited with ourselves.
Freed from the tyranny of believing we need anybody else.
Freed into becoming a part of the whole, a part of humanity just as worthy as anybody else.
Freed to pursue life purpose with intention.
This allows us to step into the brilliant power of accountability for our lives, and to feel that freedom in every fiber of our being.
Connection comes by loving ourselves first.
In doing so, we discover that the love we give to another comes from the infinite love that is Source. Love is no longer a scarce commodity, but rather the most abundant substance in the universe. By loving ourselves first, the love we receive from another is not ‘needed,’ is not draining, and can be free from drama.
In my case, the resulting connection is like nothing I’d ever experienced in my life.
The irony of it all was that the only way I could have either Freedom or Connection was to choose to have BOTH. It isn’t that we CAN have it all…the reality is we MUST have it all to have anything at all.