Each person seems to be afraid of a word that means doing something, being something, something that the person in question couldn’t possibly do or be.
It’s the person who thinks that he’s going to be clingy, who never gets close to imposing his needs. Even a concerted effort in that direction wouldn’t let him get close to being needy enough. Yet he worries about it.
It’s the one who fears offending another’s intelligence, who couldn’t if she tried, even if she took lessons. Yet she frets over the fact that she might, avoids saying what she knows just in case someone hears the wrong thing, thinks she could be, might be talking down to him.
It’s the child who can’t bear the thought of being in the way, and instead is invisible to everyone. It’s the college kid who lives a nightmare of being ordinary when the reality is potential that is amazing, unique, and extraordinary.
We all have these words we fear − each our own and self-selected, probably by something someone else did or said. Despite the DNA that protects us, that makes it so we could never be or do the word that we chose, we act on guard always as if we might, we could. Afraid.
That is, of course, except for me. You don't think so, but I really could be my awful word. I could outwit my DNA to hurt myself and be my word.
We all think that too.
We're a most interesting species. Sure of flaws, holding tight to them, we won't be moved − even if we don't have them, even if they were invented by something someone said a long time ago.
One day I will invent an ERASE button for the tape recordings in our heads.
−me strauss Letting me be