Bring Out Your Inner Pippi

Bring Out Your Inner Pippi
Pippi Longstocking

It’s four in the morning. Wayne Dyer, the wise spiritual leader – on the other side now, as they say – has many videos still up on YouTube. I watched one last week where he talked about how, if you wake up in the middle of the night or towards morning, at the same time for many nights, it might be a sign. He said that in the middle of the night your brain is quieter and has less chatter in it – less distractions. If God or your angels or your “higher self” wants to tell you something or give you a message, that’s when it will be easier to get through to you.

Weird, yeah?

I never really paid too much attention to Wayne Dyer when he was alive and I’m ashamed to admit it’s because of a photo on one of his very first books, Your Erroneous Zones. Actually, even the title is embarrassing – too close to “erogenous,” which I suppose was the point. The photo always disturbs me, every time I see it. I’ll copy it below for you. There is just something about his eyes and the way he’s grinning like a madman. He’s even missing a tooth. That photo is the very definition of “quack”! So I didn’t read any of his books.

Wayne Dyer – Freaky, right?!

I guess I judged the book by its crazy cover.

After that, I saw him on one of those PBS fundraisers or something and was surprised at how normal and ordinary he was and how simple yet profound his messages were. Now he’s all over YouTube. He was a kind, intelligent, and thoughtful man. That photo is not representative at all. Maybe I was ready to hear his message at that particular time.

What’s With 2022 Already?

Timing is everything, as any astrologer will tell you and as I’ve learned in my own life (see my post The Stories I Tell: The Truth is “Out There”). Have you ever had the experience of trying to read a book and not being able to finish it? Maybe you found it too slow or uninteresting. A few years later, if you pick up the same book, you read it with great interest and wonder how you could have ever thought it was boring!

The events of 2022 have been so startling and have provoked so many strong feelings of anger and confusion in me that I am starting to really question why I am here at this time. I miss my old life – you know, from 2019 and before.

How Did I Get Here?

Then I started to go over my life so far and how I have been blown about by this event or that event for years now. How can I have any continuity in my life at all if I am a different person at different times? Is trying to be who others wanted me to be what has caused my own personal turmoil and suffering?

If I apply this to relationships, it’s no wonder that I am single now for I am no longer the innocent, young girl who just wants everyone to love her. What man could resist the adoring gaze and the single-minded attention of such a girl? Especially one, I might add, with Venus and Mars conjunct in her chart. When I focus on someone, I fixate. I delve into their psyche, I figure out what interests them, what they like, what amuses them, where their weaknesses are, and how I can fit myself into each of those places to be exactly who they need me to be.

It should be noted that I do this unintentionally – or at least I used to. Now that I know what I do, I will consciously try NOT to do this. It is a one way road to loneliness.

Keeping up With the Pretenses

In the past, after not being entirely myself for a year or two, I will spend the next several years whining about how lonely I am. I realized (after 30 years!) that in my marriage, I could be swapped out for anyone, as long as my husband’s needs were met. Ouch! Ego smack down! Being quickly and easily replaced by someone that gazes at him adoringly and watches hockey with him every night has been H.E. double hockey sticks. I do have to admit, though, it’s probably an improvement for us both.

I Got What I Deserved, For Not Being Myself

Did my culture encourage me to do this? The tradition of a wife dressing up to greet her husband at the door when he got home from work, his slippers in one hand and his favourite cocktail in the other started in the 1920s and carried on well into the 1960s.

“Don’t bother your husband with petty troubles and complaints when he comes home from work. Be a good listener. Let him tell you his troubles; yours will seem trivial in comparison.”

Edward Podolsky, “How to Be A Good Wife”, 1943

I really wanted to be this great person who never complained and was always organized and caring.

The thing I didn’t like to think about was how I felt like the real me was not really worth knowing. I was an odd, awkward teenager, who had never truly fit in anywhere. That part of me was never welcome by me and never seemed to be accepted by anyone else when it did slip out, here and there.

What is it to Be “Odd”?

Definition of “odd” from Merriam-Webster: differing markedly from the usual, ordinary, or accepted.

That is actually the perfect definition for me. Like Wayne Dyer’s crazy-eyed photograph, I can be off-putting to people. On the one hand, my ego really likes to be different. After all, “different” isn’t that far from “special”! But on the other hand, it can be a lonely, isolated place.

And isn’t being “odd” just another mask to put on? I have this theory that everyone is actually odd, when it comes right down to it. Just peel back a few layers and…weirdo. Each of us has unique and interesting things about us, if we’d only be brave enough to be ourselves.

Most people rein it in so as to appear “normal” to everyone else. It’s like virtue-signalling writ large. But it’s so phony to who we actually are, I think it will make us sick if we keep it bottled up all our lives. Or should I say, all the life we are living, for it’s not really our life we’re living, is it?

If we are not being ourselves and are censoring our words and even thoughts, whose thoughts are we actually expressing? Looking to society to see how we should dress, what we should eat, how we should exercise, and how we should live, will put us at the mercy of every commercial lobbyist and money-making enterprise out there. If we go along with whoever is in power, we will constantly be buffeted about by elections, dictators, and current popular programs or theories from the group we have chosen to follow.

It is Uncomfortable to be “Different” or “Other”

Standing up to my friend group and my government is not easy. Being ridiculed, ostracized, fired, and “black-listed” is really disheartening. I am working on remembering that we are all doing our best in the here and now and that we are all on the same “side,” no matter what the authorities are telling us.

I can see so clearly that by working so hard to fit in and to be like everybody else, people are easily convinced of the necessity of Covid mandates, lockdowns, and the whole narrative fed to them by the government and media. Especially when the fear factor is thrown in.

Many of us have been going along with authorities our whole lives, mostly without thinking too much about it. I believe they used to want what was best for us but what has happened is that our governments, out of financial necessity, have teamed up with corporate “partners,” and these big companies do not have our best interests at heart at all. They see us as a financial windfall.

Follow the Propaganda!

Maybe being “odd” really means speaking up when you feel differently than most other people do. Word of warning: when I decided that it made more sense for me to go a different way, that’s when the trouble started. (Planes, Trains, and Automobiles: “You’re going the wrong way!” )

How to Find Out Who You Are

The most dangerous thing of all is that we can completely lose ourselves when all decisions and thoughts are being made for us. I believe it is crucial to know and understand ourselves when the world we’ve always known becomes unstable. Otherwise, anxiety and stress will dog us as we’re buffeted around by the winds of these massive changes.

It has taken me a long time to figure out who I am and what I’m about. I am still learning. After my divorce, especially, my world had fallen apart and I had to begin again.

I found it easiest to start with what I didn’t like. I would catch myself saying, “Ew!” in my head and it would be an “aha!” moment. Just simple things like I don’t like smoked paprika. Or sardines, no matter how many crackers or how much cheese surrounded them.

I also have very little patience for small talk or talk that delves too deeply into minute detail. From that I realized that big picture, broad overviews excited me – how does this affect everyone and/or everything? And so on.

Why I Quit the Hiking Club

Due to Covid, the hiking club had been on hiatus. Last summer, during a brief respite from social gathering rules, we were able to meet outside for an attempt at a BBQ. There was only single-serving food, with gloves and disposable cups and we had to be careful that not too many people went up to the table at once. A real hoot.

You can see where this is going. Everyone was so cautious (the club has an older demographic with most members my older baby boomer brothers and sisters). I was feeling skeptical but played the game and tryed to make the best of it.

So we sat around the backyard, our chairs a careful six feet apart. I tried to engage a few people in lively discussions by telling stories but was met with nervous chuckles and averted eyes. I then listened to the conversation. Besides the factual Covid nonsense and expressed worries, everything I overheard around me were details. Long winded tactical planning for a possible upcoming hiking season. These people are serious about their hiking. Every mountain and trail were detailed, with lengthy descriptions of what the weather will be like for each one. What you were likely to encounter and advice on the best course of action for your own planned excursion were hashed and rehashed. These are the expected conversations at a hiking club gathering, I am sure.

None of This Interested Me in the Least

At this point, I had been locked up in my house, alone, for over a year. I wanted to hear about their feelings and what they had discovered about themselves and the people they lived with over the past year of lockdowns. Did they experienced the frustrations I had felt over their lack of freedom? I longed to hear if anyone had nearly gone crazy. Was anyone considering breaking up with their spouse or partner, as I was? (The only person I felt any connection with at all had broken up with her husband a few months before.)

It was at that gathering that I realized I did not belong in the hiking club and had no business there. I had volunteered, been secretary for over five years, and met friends that I could go hiking with outside the club. These friends had opinions and things to say on many other topics but none of them were at the BBQ.

I learned that I really don’t feel like trying to fit into a group anymore, if it means I have to take part in trivial conversations! (To be fair, these conversations are incredibly important if you find yourself out in the bush, in the middle of nowhere with no compass as night is falling. You will be FAR better off having one of these detail-oriented people along. However, I am excellent at keeping everyone’s spirits up and telling all kinds of distracting and somewhat illogical stories!)

Within Without You

How else do I get closer to the “me of me”? Meditating or sitting quietly, doing nothing at all, really allows me to feel “grounded.” It also helps with the stress and uncertainty I face, although it is tough to get my monkey mind to be quiet! I started with a guided mediation from Jason Stephenson on YouTube. Talk about a gentle friend.

What surprises me is how meditation gives me insights into some problem I’m grappling with. Or maybe it’s the feeling of calm that allows me to see those insights. I’m not sure which comes first. It is like Wayne Dyer says, it’s pretty hard for your guides to give you a signal if you’ve got AC/DC cranked all the time!

The practice of meditation helps me find out even more about myself and how I fit into the big picture of all life. It’s more than just a reminder that we are more than just our bodies and our minds, it’s almost a “proof” that this is so. Sometimes I finish a meditation and am almost embarrassed about how much I’d been freaking out about Trudeau again. Almost. 😉

Express Yourself & Have More Fun!

Because I have rarely had the confidence to dress or act the way I truly want to, mostly I have adopted the common image and style that is in fashion for women my age. But I don’t like it much.

There is a YouTube channel called “StyleLikeU” that profiles interesting people who are not afraid to be themselves. Women like Amy Van Doran will absolutely inspire you to wear whatever you feel like wearing! In this video, she says her current style icon is Miss Frizzle from the Magic School Bus.

What you wear seems to signal to others what they can expect from you. I think it’s a sort of social shortcut to clue people into how you think about life.

At my new job we are not allowed to be too crazy in what we wear – there is a strict dress code – and yet some people still manage to be individuals. One young guy has dyed his hair shades of blue and pink. This, combined with his pixie-like frame and quick manner, has already made him one of my favourites. When I saw him in the warehouse, sitting high up on one of the grey racks counting stock, I told him he looked like “Elf on a Shelf.”

When I Embrace My Strangeness, it Feels Good

Last fall I decided that I needed a cloak. I had been reading some medieval type books and it just hit me: “I need a cloak!” For hundreds and hundreds of years, everyone wore cloaks. If you are on the road, they made wonderful blankets. But the sad truth is, no one wears a cloak much anymore.

So, I watched a few YT videos, bought the softest wool material I could find and sewed myself a cloak. If I leave it lying around, one or the other cat finds it within minutes and settles down for a long nap on it.

By far my favourite video was this guy, Dolthalion. His casual attitude toward sewing allowed me to actually cut the material – for me the hardest part of the whole process. I made my cloak fall mid-calf with an oversized hood. When I wear it, I feel like I’m about to meet Gandalf and go on an adventure. It looks really cool with my black combat boots.

Or Maybe I’m Just Leftovers?

Another definition of “odd” is “left over after others are paired or grouped.” And isn’t that fitting? (I explore this in: Get Your Head on Straight: How History Can Give You Perspective)

I guess that makes me doubly odd. As if I needed Merriam-Webster to tell me that!

I am free to be me now, although I am still scared to be different. But if I’m not being me, then I may as well be in disguise, hidden in the underground, living someone else’s life.

I am also going to try not to judge others by what they are wearing or books by their covers. Some people might be emerging Pippi Longstockings, like me, and just warming up to their inner crazy!

What I hope is that I’ll be bold enough to be who I am and wear what I want so that any weird friends will have an easier time recognizing me.

Maybe that was why Wayne Dyer used that photograph on his book cover – so that he’d be instantly recognizable as someone with something very different to say.

Bring Back the Cloak!


No comments yet. Why don’t you start the discussion?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *