What Lies Beneath...

Beneath...implying layers. Beneath...below the surface. Beneath...hidden, secretive, and elusive. Beneath...underhanded? Beneath...without understanding. Beneath...shameful. Beneath...our deepest, darkest fears. Not the fears of spiders and heights...but the ones even we don’t want to name because then they become real. Maybe they are too beneath that you haven’t realized them, they are just a feeling. Because beneath every behavior there is a feeling. And beneath each feeling is a need. Beneath is what deserves to be uncovered, deserves air to breathe, deserves sun and water like a houseplant. It’s this beneath that we need to understand in order for us to understand why we feel anything. Do you know why you feel the way you feel? We can identify why our good feelings are good, but can we identify why our bad feelings creep up, or is it easier to repress them...beneath…??

How do we define womanly our needs? We who have been repressed, suppressed, suspended, and indefinitely halted. Told our needs must come second...third...fortieth...but why? What makes our needs less important than others? Because we feel. We feel big, soul fillingly expansively big. We feel in arches and in needle pricks, we feel deep and why not unabashedly? But it is in shame, in fear, and in helplessness that we feel. We feel the excitement of a new day and the shrill of yesterday and the fears of tomorrow. We feel the needs of those around us, but not our own. We feel the world and feed it. We do our utmost to fill the cup of the world with love, with compassion, with (un)hesitating apathy at the darkest spots (we recognize the spots, but we don’t know how to fix them alone so we feel guilt and a never ending pit in our stomachs that yearns for better), and fill it until our stomachs and hearts are empty. And then feel guilt when filling our cups. “You can’t pour from an empty cup.” Empty words and empty feelings are not filling anyone's cups.

How do we meet needs that are hidden beneath the feelings that we don’t know even exist at times? How do we meet our needs to prevent the visceral feelings that we connect to a behavior that we fear at our core? Too deep? Says who? Says him. Says her. Says they. What I do know is that we need to start filling our needs and empty spaces. Whatever they may be, whatever you think they might be, just fill. Fill our empty stomachs and hearts with all of the potential needs and hopefully one will fit, like children at play with shapes trying to fit a square into a circle. Maybe if we preach kindness, preach humanity, preach beauty in all sizes, preach church, those edges will become less jagged and will start to round out at the sides and slowly start to fill the corners and we will begin to feel full, a feeling so few can identify.

Focus on the needs not the behavior. How do we focus on anything in our ADD, coffee-addicted, social media craze that fuels impatience, impermanence and constant never-ending change? What’s good for us, what’s bad for us, what fuels our soul, what should our focus be? Climate change, obesity, violence in our schools, Coronavirus, and WWIII. We are told, shouted at, that those are our focuses, but what about our behaviors connected to our feelings fueled by our needs? Who cares about the humanity in the individual?

“Just deal with it” so impersonal, like “do you want fries with that?” Dealing can be corrupt, weak, and demeaning. However, can dealing also be empowering or a way to overcome? Putting one’s needs in the forefront, to examine, exemplify, and cope. Dealing with the obvious, the necessary and the weaknesses of the world. Dealing with the cause, not the symptom. Too often we deal in symptoms like the Prozac that should be in everyone’s water. Maybe if we can cure the symptoms the causes will trickle away and we’ll be left with squares filling circles, leaving slightly empty corners but feeling partially full. Is that enough? Or is it like putting a band-aid on a bullet wound?

BeCAUSE it’s the cause that’s the crux. If we can understand and fix the cause, then the symptoms of our behaviors, our feelings, and our needs will be met and be fulfilled. Simplicity. Easy. Done. HA! Done by whom? Our spouses, our lovers, our friends, our children? No, WE must do this. We must stop putting ourselves fortieth, we must embrace our SELVES, we must not allow others to steal our shadows, our thunder, and our pride in who we are and what our needs are. We deserve more than to hide beneath. We deserve to have our needs met and not hide beneath the feelings and fears. We need to feel empowered to share our needs and expect them to be met! (SHOCKING!) It’s more than just us. It’s generational. It’s our job, our career, and our duty to no longer feel the guilt of filling our own cups, even if it’s with squares.

What steps can you take to identify your needs, to communicate the feelings associated with your behaviors to tap into your unlimited potential of fulfillment?

It’s time to identify what lies beneath in your life!

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