For much of my life I was living in oblivion. I have always been acutely aware of what was happening around me but in order to survive I had to squelch my instincts. It has taken me years to dig myself out of all the confusing survival tactics that I used in or to survive. Notice that I said survive.

Somewhere along the way I made the decision that I didn't just want to survive, I wanted to live.  And in order to do that I need to go through some pain.

I discovered that one of my biggest  weaknesses is, not being able to see the dark in people, including myself. Because I am honest, I thought the whole world was honest. But also, being a good girl is another weakness it's gotten me in a lot of trouble.

This weekend I was sitting in Vineyard Haven with my friend and there was beautiful Buddha hanging outside a store. I said to her, "I just had the impulse to steal that.' Now mind, you I have stolen one thing in my entire life. It was a sweater vest, from Filenes, when I was in high school. I did it because everyone else was doing it. It made me sick to my stomach.

My friend was amazed that

a.) I would say that out loud,and

b) that I am that aware of my impulses.

I guess it 's all the yoga and the therapy. Also being an actress. Anthony Hopkins said we all have it in us the good and the bad.

My theory is that it's a choice. A choice to act on the up and up. But the choice gets clouded by the unconscious. If we do not look deep, we will act out of impulse and create circumstances. Then we will be confused by the circumstances. Saying things like "how did this happen to me? I'm a good person."

I found it lately with negotiations, there have been times lately where it appeared that I was in the weaker position, but because of someone else's greed, I won.

In the past I wouldn't be able to tolerate that somone could do something so low level. But now that I am not unconcious and i know that the temption is always there. ( and mind you it comes from a weakness and fear that there is not enough)

I was able to see that they were trying to take advantage of my weakness and get more  in the deal.

They got more alright, they got more of "how could this happen to me I'm a good person?"

If you asked any of these people if they thought they were living a low life, they would be horrified.

But the truth is in the truth. If you live in the dark your life will be small. Simple as that. It literally caves in on you. And not until you have the guts to dig yourself out, will you be able to escape it.

My point is, the answer to life is not to not make yourself vulnerable because someone might take advantage, (because then they win) the answer to life is to be vulnerable and aware at the same time. Then make the conscious decision to take what you need and lave the rest. Admit that you might want more, then decide that for yourself, for you to live in your skin, you are going to only take what you need. Otherwise you get  a whole lot of "how good this happen to me? I'm a good person."  It's not good or bad, it's authentic.