Yesterday I went to the same party I’ve been going to for the last 7 years for my best friend’s birthday. My best friend I was shocked to latterly discover is an introvert no less! An introvert with the same set of friends year on year.
The first few times I went to her do I felt intimidated and boring. I had nothing to say to these right on North Londoners and they would no doubt find me dull. I went with my toddler who sat on a blanket reading.
Yesterday it was such a joy to walk in there and know most of them from our annual chat. Those I didn’t know I was very happy to regale with my wild stories mostly about my ridiculous profession – laughable but so right somehow. My now 9 year old mingled with the best of them with her cheeky straightforwardness.
It got me thinking about how things have shifted for me in the last few years. That entering that party now, even if I had known no one I would have assumed they’d all want to talk to me…
I’m an extremely late developer. For my first 35 years I felt the crying need for something I could not put my finger on, all the while living the life it felt like my parents wanted for me. Great job, nice husband. I was happy, definitely happy, but there was a constant yearning inside me; a sense of being unfulfilled, itchy. I was judgemental, slightly scared and a terrible desire to be top dog made me hold all I had achieved together with arms of steel.
Today in spite of the last year of heartache, I know that I’m in the right place. I don’t get those feelings any more. Over the last ten years or so I have become “me”. It took dismantling all those structures and starting again for me to do that – which took me to Sydney 10 years ago, with my failing marriage in tow. I don’t do things by halves you know.
Sydney was tough but it was seminal. It taught me I could create community wherever I went. It forced me to be without all the things and people which had made me comfortable and on returning and rebuilding my life the key ingredient of difference this time around was “no room for pretence”. This has stood me in good stead everywhere – from restructuring a business with minimal fallout to singing authentically in public to creating some amazing relationships.
5 years ago I was sitting in the part time frustrating role I had been given on returning from Sydney, knowing beyond all doubt that I should be in charge. I looked at my paltry connections on linked in, and I somehow knew I “should” be inundated with people. I “should” be well known.
A while ago I blogged about the Jungian concept of archetypes – a theory built on by Dr Myss. I deleted it because I decided it was too long and boring an entry. Archetypes are the intuitive recognition we all feel for a certain “type” of person – for others and ourselves. They change through the ages although some, like the hero remain, whilst their expression flexes for the age.
Reading about an archetype called “the queen” was startling . It was like a reflection of myself – even down to the frustration the queen feels on not being in her rightful spot.
I think that my sense of being in the right place now comes from the fulfilment of finally being my archetype.
Looking at my life now the “home” as your castle is still missing. My house is tiny and unsuitable for entertaining – the queen needs her palace. My house has felt temporary ever since I moved into it.
Intimate relationships are challenging for this archetype. It takes a special kind of man to take on a queen…
Archetype Family: Royal
Other Expressions: Executive, CEO, Leader, Chief
Life Journey: To learn to use power wisely, productively, and responsibly
Unique Challenge: To identify the causes in which to invest my power and influence
Lesson To Learn: To differentiate between authentic and illusory power
Defining Grace: Generosity
Challenge To Self: I will share power in a close relationship, and commit to cooperation and compromise.