Oh the pressure.
The relentless pressure.
To do it "right", to have a life that looks good, to have a better body, to be a better wife and mother, to be successful, to be nice, to be good to quit the bad habits.
Where does it all come from? Where did this demon arise?
Is it society's fault? Is it our parent's fault?
Well, actually, this pressure is SELF-GENERATED. And... it's something we are choosing.
The relentless pressure we experience is, in fact, traumatic. Of course, we may have learned this as a coping mechanism. As a way to control our lives that felt completely out of control at some point in time. I used pressure to succeed as a way to distract myself from inner-emptiness.
The gaping hole of invalidation, abuse, and neglect.
I still catch myself taking another hit of pressure from time to time. Snorting the adrenaline rush of putting an intense amount of pressure on myself until I crash and burn and in the wreckage realize that I am...
I absolutely love the UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship). My husband got me into it - we even got engaged at a UFC Event in Toronto (Max Holloway vs. Anthony Pettis to be exact. for those of you who are fans). When we first started dating, he would have the fights on in the background and I dismissed it for a couple weeks.
But, as I watched these fighters tell their stories of adversity and triumph, and saw their athletic commitment and dedication - I fell in love with the sport - the vulnerability of standing barefoot in the octagon, bleeding and pressing forward. The preparation, the skill, the power, the willingness to lose - the emotional triumph of a win. It hooked me. Some of them had lost children, grew up in poverty, were working full-time jobs and still fighting.
Athletics in general are an amazing metaphor for overcoming adversity and trauma.
They show us that against all odds - we can win. And, if we lose, we can still say we put it all on the line....