After a very busy and hectic week wearing my accountant hat, I went to a local wine dinner, met some new people and had interesting conversations. The topic of Anthony Bourdain arose. I'm not one to stay up to date with the news but I had heard about his suicide and the suicides of other people in the limelight. For me it brings to light the danger inherent in living in false personas. How often do we get caught up in our illusions of who we need to be that we deny who we are and what we need.
I had a decade where I was just bombarded with life changing events happening so quickly I was never really steady on my feet before the next one knocked my feet out from under me again. I spent a year of living with and working through the depression and anxiety of just getting out of bed in the morning and facing people and overwhelming responsibilities. I was raised to not allow anyone to see how fragile and vulnerable I truly was - to bury it all deeply and act as if I was still the rock everyone could still depend on. I was fortunate that I had a few friends that were encouraged me to fall apart and were willing to be my protector when I wasn't capable of doing it for myself. I learned asking for and accepting help is not being weak.
What is the culture we are cultivating? By our actions are we teaching it is all right to say to someone I can't be there for you right now? Are we teaching it is all right to ask for someone to take this burden from me for a while? It takes a village to raise a child. The arbitrary application of age as the definition of adulthood doesn't eliminate the fact there is a piece of a child that will always reside within us. Do you have a village? Do you have a group of people who can serve as comforter, as conscience, as sacred mirror, as confidant, as ass kicker? When we reach those dark, low places in our life; we desperately need the village to keep the candle burning in the window to light our way home. We need the village to believe in us and show us our worth in this world when we are unable to believe in ourselves. I love old movies and the life lessons they portray. The movie that so beautifully portrays these sentiments is "It's a Wonderful Life."
Doing life on your own is a choice. It is up to you to decide whether or not you make a different choice. Even with all the challenges relationships present, living a life with others is a lighter load than living life on your own.