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Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Growth. A terrifying thing.

Wow, this are tumultuous times.

This process of coming to realise what power I have over the direction in which my life is leading is positively terrifying. I find myself in a constant state of butterfly-stomach. My mind won't cease from turning over a myriad of ideas, many of which require my stepping out of my comfort zone should I choose to put them into practice. Should I choose to put them into practice.
There's three cats sitting on a wall.

Two of them decide to jump off

How many cats are left sitting on the wall.

One?

No, three.

It's a long way from deciding to jump off the wall to actually jumping off.

It was late the other night, when, inspired by either a book I was reading or an email from a friend, I forget which, I decided that I was going to do something I've talked about doing for a long time - sell some of my better photos. This immediately prompted me to get out of bed, add another domain name to my long list of middle-of-the-night domain names that sit pointing at TGW, longing to be put to better use, and install a couple of databases on a server that has (like the domain names) been sitting all by itself in some warehouse in the USA, seldom visited by anything but robots.

Yesterday I spent much of the day playing around with templates, and reached the stage where it actually looks like a proper website. Now I just have to figure out how to integrate Paypal.

Yesterday, i met an old friend, Yuko, who I used to work with in Switzerland. We'd not seen each other for four years. What a joy it was! She is an incredible inspiration, and an absolute joy to be around. So genki! She also has the ability to put people at ease in seconds. I found her lack of polite Japanese when we first met very refreshing; it immediately put me at ease. We found a quiet Japanese restaurant where the beer was half price ...I skipped classes for the rest of the day.

Twinkle returned from Chicago last night. I was looking forward to seeing her, but also bracing myself for a shock. I knew that the person I was going to meet would be a little different from that person who boarded the plane last week. She'd attended a business convention with 1000 other Japanese people (three plane loads - when the immigration officer asked her how many other were in her group he nearly fell off his chair!). By all accounts it was an incredible weekend, essentially focusing on self-development.

I was right. The person I met at Ikebukuro was absolutely buzzing, ready to tackle anything in life. Her world had expanded immensely, and her fears of stepping beyond her boundaries whilst still there, were not going to stop her from achieving whatever she wanted to achieve.

I knew that this would leave me feeling vulnerable and challenged. Read any self-development book (such as Susan Jeffers' Feel the Fear...) and you will hear tales of partners reacting with hostility to the new stronger person that is seen emerging before them. "You don't care about me any more." "You're not the person I met 2 years ago." "Why can't you think about me for a change?"

I knew all of these lines, and I was aware that I too may start to feel like that, and use some of them myself. My known universe was going to be intruded upon by ideas from someone who had seen a bigger picture and was not restricted in their actions as I was in mine by my fear complex. I was to be confronted by someone who was not bound by the chains that I reamained bound by. Seeing that power in my partner, my equal, was to be a terrifying experience.

Of course, expecting such a reaction within myself, it was only natural that that's exactly the reaction I had! I saw myself behaving irrationally, I knew why I was doing so, and I knew that I could choose to stop feeling like that should I want to. Angry with myself, I went to bed as quickly as possible, and put the new Bjork album on repeat play.

It took several hours to work through all this. I am blessed in that my partner appreciates the importance of communication, and also by the fact that she speaks English!! It was 4.15am by the time we said night night. There had been many tears as shared our hopes and fears, and reaffirmed just how important we were to one another.

Growth is both a terrifically exciting, yet terrifying thing. There are the odd occasions when I feel that it would be nice to just be content with myself as I am - wouldn't life be easier! - but if I am to make the kind of difference in this world that I would like to make, then growth is the only option. I'm glad I have someone to simultaneously hold my hand and kick me up the arse as I face my fears.

As they say in Japan, Ganbarou!

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