I am awake long past the time I should be asleep, again, because the voices in my head are having a discussion. There have been many of these discussions in the past few months. Once upon a time that would have meant nights of profound despair, of voices screaming at me with recrimination and rage, with accusations and loathing and a great deal of emotional pain.
But those conversations have changed. Now they are a function of self discovery and reconciliation. Now the voices have become distinct, they are honored now, they are heard and they actually listen to each other and even work together to understand their separate points of view so that they can either come to a consensus or establish a balance with healthy boundaries.
I am engaged in an active process of integration. Many of the voices hold no conflict between them and are in agreement about most of their desires and how to achieve those desires. Most of them agree about ethics and behavior and can all play nicely together. And we all agree that living our life fully and without shame or fear is necessary.
To that end, I spent the weekend doing just that, and I feel energized and joyful. But there was a moment that required me to let go of an opportunity to engage in a way that I would have enjoyed. I did not “hold back” in the way that I used to, out of fear or shame or any other self censorship (and that in itself is a victory for me) but, there was quiet decision made almost without conscious awareness (also a victory of a kind) to wait and let the opportunity pass for now. That is the subject currently under discussion. There is a boundary that we are not all in agreement about and we need to have a conversation, because everyone at the table has a voice that is important to living with integrity.
I am pleased that the voices are all actually mine, and not from others, society, or programming from childhood, nor are any of them angry or fighting dirty. They are each honestly engaged in figuring this out so that we can make a decision that is right for all of us. I had not been consciously aware of the boundary conflict in the moment but, I am pleased that the uncontrollable self-destructive pattern has been successfully replaced with patience and trust.
It might be a long night but, it will be productive and much less painful than they used to be.
I give thanks.