Dusting off the keyboard

by Dian Reid-Jancic· Follow Dian on

I do this from time to time. Hibernate for a bit. Come out and play. Decide I wasn’t done hibernating.

I’ve been doing that for the last three years. I can tell you the moment it happened: the moment I turned my back on my self-worth. There is obviously (or maybe not so) more to that story, but that’s what the hibernation boils down to.

And also I’ve learned that getting caught up in the details doesn’t do anyone any good.

I’ve tried to call it the fallow. I’ve tried to push myself into pretending like everything was great again. I then became comfortable in my hibernation and silently decided I didn’t need to come out of it.

Until I realized that four winters in hibernation is just too much, even for the most introverted of introverts (which I’m not– we’ll call it 51/49).

I hesitate to say that there’s more to come here (#becausethepast), but in any case and regardless of timeline, there is more to come here.

And besides, feeling ready isn’t a requirement of moving forward. But feeling the feelings is.

  • Giving up my self-worth, hibernation, and the fallow. Dian, I read this post last week and it has been floating through my mind since, simmering like a fine cajun roux. And as we say here in good ‘ol Southeast Missouri, “I smell what yer steppin’ in!” (a.k.a. “I get it!”, and more about what we’re “steppin’ in” in a moment).

    Lately, I’ve been questioning my own self-worth. That question of “who the hell do I think I am, anyway” has been playing on repeat in my mind. I’ve also been feeling the pull of hibernation (“I don’t really need to do [this]. I would be just fine without [it].”) My hibernation does have its allure. It is quite tempting, for me, to see the ease of just slipping back into the shadows.

    But … a word has also been floating through my mind as your post has been ruminating and I’ve been “perfecting” the words for the pages of my coaching website … Practice.

    I think many folks, both clients and coaches, come to the work we do to create the perfect version of themselves, to “fix” themselves. God knows, I did! And in doing so, I forgot that it’s a practice, not a cure. This work is about two things: creating more joy and learning to navigate difficult times and situations. … “Practice makes better, not perfect.” (I’d forgotten those words.)

    Now, about that fallow. (This is the part of your post that *really* stuck with me.)

    When I read that word, I thought about what a fallow field is; what the process of fallowing is for.

    What a farmer does is he plows the field, turning up the soil, exposing the earth beneath the surface. (When I’m going through a fallow period, that’s exactly what my insides feel like. Like they’ve been plowed, exposed to the surface, vulnerable and raw.) Why does the farmer do this? He does it so that more of the soil IS exposed and so that nutrients can sink deep into it. Next he applies fertilizer. A.k.a.: Manure. A.k.a.: Shit. Then, he lets the field sit for a while. He lets the shit do its job enriching the soil so that when the field is ready it will grow and yield a better crop. This is a purposeful process, and a necessary one.

    Practice. Joy and shit. The “juice” is in the AND.

    As I sat outside this morning, drinking my coffee, watching the sunrise, and listening to, and struggling with, the words of my self-doubt and lack of worthiness, your post came to mind — that fallow field and shit. Then, a comforting smile crept across my face. I remembered Karen Caterson (God, how I love that woman!) and a wonderful Summer of Authenticity. … “It’s about the ‘and’.” Practice. Joy AND shit.

    I know you’re familiar with Karen’s contribution, but I’d like to invite you to listen to it again. I would also like to say thank you for sharing your authenticity. Your sharing made more room in this world for me to share the “shit I’m steppin’ in”. =)

    http://authenticrealities.com/2013/06/summer-of-authenticity-fully-alive-karen-caterson/

    • “Practice makes better…” always a good reminder. And oh what fun it was to listen to the Karen’s post again, thanks for that reminder as well.

      I think the thing that pops out for me is that the fallow requires the digging and churning and replanting. Truly turning things over so they’re fresh, and then adding the seeds. And because I’m not afraid to mix metaphors: otherwise it’s like taking a bath and not draining the water before you get back in again. 🙂 I think that’s part of what I’d been missing during my periods in the fallow.

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