Exposed – by Beth

29 May

Lately I’ve been having a recurring vision/feeling as I’m just about to fall asleep. It’s quite odd. I can visualise my chest totally opened up. The blood and gore doesn’t gross me out at all, it just seems very matter-of-fact. But there is something unsettling about it. I recently listened to a particularly vivid episode of Radiolab entitled ‘Guts‘…which may have given me the imagery.

Back to the dream. After than initial realisation that I’m lying there with no skin, a range of different things happen depending on my mood. Mostly I’m just touching said innards. Sometimes I’m hugging myself, innards and all. One time I was swobbing my exposed torso with gauze soaked in chocolate (I think that’s a dessert craving). It was like that game Operation, but it was me operating on me…

I’m feeling a little exposed at the moment. Allow me to lie myself down on the FFF couch and tell you about it.

For the past five months my work has been going through a restructure. Has anyone ever enjoyed a restructure? I’ve been through a few at my work in the 4 years I’ve worked there, but this one is the first to really affect me. I am now one of those rusted-on grumblers that I’ve never understood BEFORE NOW. Not knowing what team I’ll be in, who my boss will be or even what job I’ll be doing July 1, has been really hard. Change is hard. Uncertainty is harder(?)

Secondly, I’ve been trying not to use food as a crutch/reward/way to get through difficulty since about last August. This is massive for me. Food was a real go-to when the going got tough. It’s forced me to take up a LOT of herbal tea drinking. I now eat MASSIVE salads: I’ve changed. I also eat a lot more fish. Still no other animal flesh, but definitely no longer a vegetarian. Like I said, I’ve changed.

Third, I have started doing a boot camp. It’s 3 times a week, but I usually only get to 2 classes. Exercise opens you up doesn’t it. I don’t think I have run like this before. Ever. And I really enjoy it. This is also a profound change. And a really positive one.

So, fourthly, I have lost weight. Not heaps (I don’t do weighing myself), but enough that I’ve lost a dress size plus. So there’s a bit less of me shielding me from the world. I think that, combined with all the change going on in my life is the reason for that recurring dream.

Totally on the subject, I watched these two Ted talks by a researcher who studies shame and vulnerability. Really amazing I think if you have time to watch (can be watched whilst doing dishes).

The phrase “vulnerability hang-over” is so cool. I get those.  I may have one after posting on the public internet a discussion of a dream where I smear my organs in chocolate. We shall see.

If you watch the talks and want more, there’s an interview with her here. The last paragraph on parenting is particularly interesting.


7 Responses to “Exposed – by Beth”

  1. Tabitha May 30, 2012 at 4:36 am #

    Great post, Beth! What a truly visceral vision you’re having, in every sense of the word. More than anyone else I know, I feel like you have an extremely strong connection between your physical being and your mental one. You were born to have such visions.

    Good on you with your eating and exercise changes too. I bet you’re looking like one hot ticket, smeared in chocolate or otherwise.

  2. Beth May 30, 2012 at 11:48 am #

    Thanks Tabs. Did you watch the Brené Brown talks?! You must!!

    • Karen May 31, 2012 at 11:54 am #

      Woah. Just watched the first talk. I did it while cleaning out my Google Drive. Because I can’t just watch a TED talk. But that is some profound business. I liked the bit about being grateful instead of terrified, because the vulnerability means we’re alive. I’m going to go back and play this again when I next do something overwhelming.

  3. Karen May 31, 2012 at 11:55 am #

    The vulnerability hangover totally resonates with me, because I kind of have the reverse of that. The main symptom of my hangovers is a nagging feeling that I’ve overshared in some way. It’s more excruciating than a headache.

  4. mischb June 4, 2012 at 12:06 pm #

    thanks beth, those TEDs are great! it’s definitely fear of vulnerability and imperfection that stops me posting stuff online (you should see how much i edit the seemingly off the cuff comments i make on FFF posts!). i even had to comment on my own comment on karen’s ‘road’ post today just so you didn’t all think i thought i was super cool with all my ‘dangerous’ travel adventures.

    • Beth June 4, 2012 at 12:40 pm #

      Oh good, glad you liked them. For better or worse I’m putting more and more out there – both digitally and face-to-face (I told a bootcamp trainer who laughed at me that I was going to punch his lights out if he kept it up – and I meant it). Solidarity sista! x

      • mischb June 4, 2012 at 12:44 pm #

        i admire your courage, beth.

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