I am a person of excess. Always have been, probably always will be. Just the way I’m wired, and I don’t think of it as good or bad. But I tend to do everything big. I feel things in a big way, I think deeply and often over-think. I eat too much, I jump in always in the deep end, I am loud in my self-expression. I do try to be sensitive to others and not suck up ALL the oxygen in the room, and I understand that some misread the intentions of those wired like myself, and I’m fine with it. I get it. It’s not easy to consider the makeup of others, and maybe they figure who’s got the time? Very understandable.
Sometimes my wiring is a positive. It’s taken me on some wild adventures; I think I’m living in Floridee because of an insatiable hunger for, what… more? More is the name of my game. Back in the days when I thought I’d have a tombstone, I wrote my preferred inscription: “Here lies Kevan. She always wanted more, and she finally got it.” Those who know me best or longest know my instructions about the memorial service, and okay, they’re unusual. They involve some climbing up on chairs and yes, there’s a bit of pretending the chairs are horses… I guess some might call that extreme… or a tiny bit controlling, I’ll cop to it. But only because I want so much to express myself even when I’m gone… you see, this is what I’m talking about. I may have a teensy problem.
Every so often, I just feel some crazy rising up in me, like a slow dark tide. I can ignore it for a while, sometimes a long while even. But then: something must be pierced, said, written, tattooed, or dyed. It’s just the law of the jungle: something’s gotta give. And once it does? Sighhhhhh… peace in the land. So you learn to just go with it. I do try, I swear, to factor in the needs of others, if their needs are unlucky enough to be connected with mine. I’m fortunate to have a man who couldn’t care less about the color of my hair, and trusts me to weigh the things that come out of my mouth. My daughter however, when she was in school, used to cringe at the attention my hair color brought her way, and I did feel badly about that. I ran into my mother-in-law in a grocery store one day and I think the shock of my purple head just broke her usual polite restraints; she stopped in her tracks and wailed, “Oh Kevan, why?!” Is it wrong that I loved that she broke through??
Why indeed? Because it is who I am. I don’t always love who I am, but I do try to. I went through a period of a year or two recently when my brain and heart were so broken, so rattled and dismantled and wounded, that I couldn’t always remember who I was, or reach that person. I’d leave the house as Kevan and wake up an hour later in a social setting huddled in a corner, dazed and confused, wondering where I went. And that can happen to us, when we’re not in touch with ourselves. Taking our temperatures, paying attention to our own lives, honoring our need to express ourselves. One of the best things about my recovery is that I do feel like myself again, like Kevan. I’m certainly changed by my experience, but I try to see that as a positive too. Life is full of changes; you gotta roll with it, grow and change and expand as needed.
Today I’m feeling a little of the black tide. It’s been a rough week, and I may be wishing today that I felt less. That I was better at shrugging things off. But that’s never gonna be me, and when push comes to shove? I’ll take me, over my purple head in the deep end. Just throw me a life jacket if you see me bobbin’ in the tide.