What was the catalyst?
Trying to pack my bags!!
I have the same two bags, I came over with. I have purposefully avoided for the most part, the acquisition of more. I was given a hoodie from a local gym, and bought a lightweight poly-fill vest; as I went out, for an open-air bus tour of Belfast, somewhat under-insulated. I even got rid of four of my books that I came with - so I reasoned, there should be more space, not less. I believe the point is if I'm that close to the "margins," I have too much. I knew my trip to be nearly a month long. I didn't know what I'd have for access to laundry services or facilities and I tried to pack for what I thought might be the sort of activities I might engage in. As it turns out, I would just wear a couple variations in rotation, hand washing and rinsing out what had been worn. Consequently I lugging around stuff that is superfluous. I don't fancy I'm on the sort of journey that involves extended periods without showers or changes of clothes, but I can also see, some of my "measures" (that have some distorted aim of providing comfort) end up be excessive.
This goes so far beyond the realm of what I pack for a trip. Though having said that, when I look to the overhead rack on a train and know, there's no way, I'm even going to try and lift this suitcase up there, that might be a clue.
No, this has more to do with another facet, of further realizing and deepening, inner healing and maintaining some form of peace in its place. There is nothing to be gained, by a continued outward orientation. Well except of course, for more stuff than I know what to do with.
I had started to increase my activity levels, and adjust my eating, before I left and was managing to maintain that pretty well while (on the road). I was doing a lot of walking, and accessed local gyms, in the towns I staying at.
The excesses in eating were another way to "fill," & numb out. I have been actively into some personal healing that is painful at times and the accumulation of the backlash from "consumption" is making my life "unmanageable."
I'm doing my best, to be with the feelings as I go. In fact, I'm satisfied with how that is going. It doesn't mean that there isn't the "wreckage of my past," to face. The manifestation of this excess, is waiting in one form, in my apartment; awaiting my return. The more immediate is here, now, along with me.
I won't get rid of the photography equipment I brought along.... I will certainly know for the future, to trim that down, it's a lot of additional weight!! (and I don't work for National Geographic)
I have already taken a bag of clothes (three shirts & a toque - I think, that would be the point, I'm certainly not going to miss them, I already can't remember, what I gave them) to the local thrift store in the town I arrived in.. I had a pocket full of coins - that went to someone collecting for a local food bank.
This periodic compulsive behaviour is completely contrary to what feels aligned to me (though obviously it has been allowed to happen nonetheless). There is the thrill of the hunt and the momentary excitement of something new - none of which is problematic in itself. It's when a long standing binge has been occurring, and I "suddenly" realize - I feel like I'm buried in it.
Ironically the processes I have been undergoing (since around this past February) are intended to bring relief; along the way, they march me through awareness (which can be painful) & old painful feeling that where repressed, which again is painful. I am learning, that below my painful feelings are unmet needs.... some of these behaviours I mention are then, "strategies," to try and meet these needs.
Life is showing me, these particular approaches are not actually working .... And, it's only natural to want to put an end to pain and suffering... but, the way to go about it, would ideally, be a means that doesn't create, more pain and suffering!!
I feel very "prosperous" when I can take bag fulls of stuff and redirect it. Sometimes I have put it directly into the hands of people who are homeless. I don't mind supporting Thrift stores as well, it's just that for some people, even those reduced prices are not low enough. Conversely, too much stuff actually feels smothering and a little overwhelming.
I have done this dance before... ebb and flow! It is my intention to apply due diligence to my on-going healing. I have just registered for a course that examines "self-sabotage," this then, is perfect timing, to be having this awareness, and to go deeper into the how's and why's of sabotage. I'm not kidding myself, I know another round of "shadow work," will not be, a walk in the park; but there's a saying that points out: "at some point the pain of staying the same - out weighs the pain of growing and healing..." I'd say, for me now, it is just like that, so here I go!!
I am a "recovering addict" the drugs and alcohol phase of my addiction is long over. I would agree with Gabor Mate with respect to a more useful question regarding addiction is: why the pain? versus: why the addiction? Therefore, the more completely I can work, toward resolving the pain (and avoid the creation of more in its place - the more completely "addictive behaviour" will be arrested. That is ample motivation for me... I won't even entertain any dialogue around - "that should be obvious!"
I will approach this with renewed - compassion, understanding and self-love. I am satisfied with attaining further freedom and accept, an incremental transformation.