MERTON, TIGGER/PIGLET, EXTROINTROVERT
Merton writes on this subject, once again. It is a subject brought well into the light with the latest events of his life. After losing everything last year (doggie, hubby, home, truck, art hermit life, financial stability, happiness, love, his life that "fit him," the one he had worked so hard over many years to create), Merton must, once again (as he used to do often when younger, when life "clobbered him") recreate himself.
And this means out into the world he must go. Extrovert on parade, once again for Merton, though he knows now at fifty, this is not something that is healthy, suitable or sustainable for him. But if he wants to be financially stable, he must do it. The more introverted art hermit life he had which fit him (and he thought fit he and hubby) ultimately cost him his relationship, and imploded when his life with his partner fell apart.
Back out into the world Merton goes. And, back to relying on his skill at recreating himself and promoting himself (and his abilities) in an extroverted way in the world. Merton music performer for the elderly, Merton lounge singer, Merton teacher… on and on it goes. Extrovert Merton on parade. Sigh.
Will he be able to sustain it? For how long? Nobody knows. We'll see. No choice, it appears, but to do as the world requires for as long as he can. Wish me luck, my friends. The world, the world's system, the powers that be (who make slaves to money of all of us, Merton's included, it appears) got me. Ah well. Hi Ho, as Mr. Vonnegut would say!
Yup. What a mystery is my strange combination of introversion and extroversion. Just doing what the Universe seems to be requiring of me. I have to fill the spots and try to play up my abilities and take advantage of opportunities as they come (or face financial instability and continued dependence upon my parents... I need to try to be completely financially solvent as possible and show them that I am really trying... they have been so kind and generous). It is not what I would choose right now, and a much quieter, introverted life would help and suit me, but I do have the ability to create and do such things.
It is just that continuing with them drains me, and the more people you are involved with, the more stress, ego and drama there is (and I am not well equipped for that). I want peace, calm, balance, restedness, and concord with all, at all times. And, the more one puts oneself out there and involves oneself with others, the more such things as I have mentioned are threatened and replaced by their negative counterparts.
I suppose I should just accept that the world requires extrovertedness of me, if I want to stay afloat financially. But this is very hard. I will try. Just doing what I have to do, right now. Your comment is interesting and true. You should have seen me when I was younger. I was so thin, ambitious, energetic, and, I think, sort of impressive and likeable (at least people seemed to indicate that this was so).
But then the world got me. The inevitable result of being out in the world and relating with others so much is that you get clobbered. And I did, many times, over and over. I got shown that the life of an extrovert is not for me. I need to be at home, and just be extroverted with my students who come to visit me (or in an essay, book, recording or film).
Now a stronger person, someone like Simon Cowell or a similar sort of fellow to him that was on Charlie Rose last night (I forget his name) would thrive on getting clobbered by life. They would put up there dukes and fight their way to the top. But I am not like that. I have the initial umph, ideas, creativity, etc., but when presented with the "getting clobbered" that inevitably comes with being in the world, I do not do well.
I have to be at peace with all and on good terms with all, happy, smiling, joyful with all. Those in the world (naive and unrealistic as this is) have to love me and I have to love them. Well, that is not going to happen. Some people are going to hate you, criticize you, etc., just for the fun of it, or because that is just what they do. I act, communicate, relate like Tigger, but underneath I am really Piglet.
M, my first partner, the other day on the phone (and upon witnessing my latest efforts, ideas and endeavors) said, "I forgot what the old Merton was like... how you always used to do and be such things."
My Dad asked me what happened to the old Merton he remembered, prompting him to remark on various abilities that I seem to have. It is true that I am creative and Tiggerish. I can promote myself and recreate myself. I am creative, but not strong, R. I cannot continue with what I have created, once the world starts to "clobber," which I am sure it will do, once again. Not sure what I will do then, but I guess I will just do the best I can until then.
Maybe the aliens will land, Jesus will come back, Nesara will come, the earth will end, or heaven knows what. I guess I just have to create this extroverted life which pays the bills, which is more the old Merton, knowing full well that I may not be able to sustain it. I have tried to warn my parents that I may not be able to sustain this. But they just say that they believe in me and have faith in me.
I just do not understand why everyone must make forty thousand dollars a year now, no matter their disposition or level of tolerance for being in the world. It should not be like this. But it is. At least it is for now. I will do the best I can for as long as I can.
Wish me luck. I know I am in over my head, but what choice do I have? Maybe God will send me someone to love and that will help. We will see. Your comments prompted me to think and write a lot here, didn't it! Hmmmm...