Thursday, January 10, 2013

self loathing

When I take an inventory of my situation, I see many great things. I know some exciting things are happening in sports: coaching interviews for the Eagles, professional hockey will be back in something like 9 days. My fraternity brothers, locally and nationally, are fired up and doing great things. My job, while continually frustrating, has started to bear fruit in areas I've been tending for the last year. I have fulfilling relationships on multiple levels in my life. Wonderful wife, a house with a pool, a somewhat reliable car...

So what's up with this malaise that I'm feeling? I don't think it's the time of year, since I'm pretty sure I'm not feeling depressed. I think what I'm feeling can best be described as unworthiness. I am sharing with you, because I think it ties into authenticity.

I wonder if we all play this part. Do we all feel like pretenders? Like children that have been given big people shoes and a fedora and told to play grown-up? I'm OK with the typical signs of growing up: the mortgage, marriage, car payments, credit card bills. I agreed to all of those things. I most particularly feel unworthy when I am asked to be responsible for the success or failure of something. I am the person at the end of the line. If I screw up, the whole project is boned. I almost feel like people were given permissions to seek things from me, but I don't remember agreeing to them. Who told you that you could tell people I was a roll model? Who said you could depend on me for answers? Who told you I was the person for that job? Did General MacArthur or President Lincoln ever just hide under the covers and say, "It's too big. No one could handle all of this responsibility. Forget it!"

I take solace in the fact that the editors of the Bible saw fit to leave in Jesus' moments of being overwhelmed. I love the treatment that Kevin Smith gives it in Dogma. If you haven't seen it, I'm amazed that you are reading this blog. Anyway, if you haven't seen it, I'm referring to a part where the main character is doubting her ability to fulfill God's will and Metatron (the angel that serves as the voice of God) reassures that even Jesus had his moment of self doubt. Actually he had two moments of self doubt, one when he was a child and again in the Garden of Gethsemane. I wonder if both images are there to illustrate the smallness that we feel when we are asked to be big.