“Life is like therapy, expensive and no guarantee.” It may be a lyric from a Garth Brooks song, but the meaning is so true. Life is expensive, not only in financial terms but in emotional terms. I think about all the different cost I have paid in life from choices and circumstances that have not been monetary but have been emotionally expensive.
I have heard or read somewhere that the average age we start retaining memories is three years old. So I start going back through time to see when my very first memory is. I’m sure we all do this, but can we really be sure of the chronological order of these memories?
I’ve been doing a lot of self-accessing as I face this new chapter in life. What makes me happy? What are my passions? What scares me? What are my fears? Going through my memory I have more sad than happy memories, but some of the sad memories I can see the lessons learned and the growth that came from them. I can also see the emotional costs from both the happy and the sad.
Raised in the era of “what will the neighbors think” I have spent most of my life wondering just that. Am I liked? Am I respected? Am I important? Would I be missed? Do they look down on me? How am I being judged? Is this outfit to risque? Should I have a beer or an alcoholic beverage? If I do, will they assume I’m an alcoholic? (Methodist guilt). I wondered and still wonder about these things from others perspectives. Until recently I never asked my self these questions about me. That is harder to do. I would rather ask others because then the responsibility is on them to answer me and justify their answers. If I ask myself these questions, the responsibility becomes mine. What is scarier, is admitting that I don’t know the answers to these questions.
The emotional cost is many. I’ve had a lot of loss in my life. I can go to these losses and see and feel the impact they had on me and also how they have changed me. I wonder what kind of person I would be if those things had not happened. Would I be happier? Would I be angrier? Would I be more liked? Would I like and love differently?
Sometimes, emotional cost is far more expensive than the monetary ones.