Loving Our Irrational Ways

We are terrifically irrational creatures, no?

We could define irrationality 101 ways, but for today, lets say it’s that lively space between what we know we need and what we actually want.

I have pined for lackluster men and unremarkable jobs, another bag of potato chips and another round of pancakes.

Did I need any of them? Not a chance. Did I want all of them? 100 percent.

If you’re like me, you’ll judge yourself up and down for this. Get it together, we might tell ourselves. Don’t be such a fool; think straight.

And, you know, I’ve never judged myself into a better place.

I’m not sure what the exact opposite of judgment is, but I suspect it’s something like love. So what if we loved our irrational selves? And to love isn’t to enable. It’s to care for, to treat tenderly like a parent treats a child’s skinned knee.

If judging is shaming ourselves, loving is accompanying ourselves: I see you, my wild irrational ways, and I hear you. I won’t act on you, but I won’t hate you, either. You’re a part of me and hating any part of me is too heavy a load to carry.

Oh, boy.

That’s a tall order, isn’t it? We’ve likely been pumping the self-judgment muscle for years. Self-love? Not as much. Especially for the unruly parts of ourselves. (The same unruly parts, I’d add, that are fiercely creative, have sky-scraping aspirations and no use for convention.)

And still. We can aim ourselves in that direction. We can keep on aiming when we miss the mark, which is bound to happen now and again, and isn’t a sign of failure but of a person in progress.

When we sign up for the human experience, we sign up for a heavy load. Loving the irrational bits of us won’t eliminate that load. But it can lessen it.

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