Thursday, September 1, 2011

That line in the sand...

Boundaries in life are funny things.

They keep moving. Just when you think you know where one is and you make your decisions accordingly.....zap! It moves this way or that, making you start all over again. Very confusing. Often, though, we are the ones  pushing that line in the sand with the tip of our shoe, hoping no one is watching. Because we want what we want when we want it. And that only means trouble for us and anyone else who is wandering in our desert at the time.

But as I age and become an Active Master, I'm getting so much better at recognizing those lines in the sand. And then respecting them.

In my "wild child" days (yes, I did have them!), I often decimated  boundaries. If I even saw them at all. And that can be dangerous to one's health and well-being. It certainly tends to complicate one's life, believe me.

OK...I'll tell on myself in an attempt to be helpful to younger people who might have the same situations arise. Take the boundary of not getting involved with your best friend's other half. (Don't stand there with that shocked look on your face. I bet there are skeletons in your closet just banging on the door to get out right now.) Even though my friend insisted they were through, DONE!, never to get together again, I shouldn't have crossed that particular boundary. I saw it there, but I chose to ignore it. I wanted....well, you know what I wanted.

Because you know what happened. If you're over 40 or so, you know what happened. After the dust cleared, I had lost a friend and a lover, and everyone was hurt and very angry. And, yes, I felt ashamed. An emotion that is not good company.

And there are clues that tell us we KNOW we shouldn't be crossing to the other side, aren't there? Like the fact that I didn't enlighten her about the person I was seeing the next night. If you have to hide things from people who are important to you, you might want to re-evaluate what you're doing. Or about to do.

Listen to that raspy voice that is trying to warn you, especially if it gets more insistent over time. Kind of like an alarm clock that is designed to get louder the more times it has to "alarm" you in the morning. And you should listen before you move the tip of your toe over that line. Don't throw a pillow at the noise in an adolescent fit. Listen, then consider what you're doing, and if you're not sure....don't do it.

I have a boundary facing me right now and I bet you do, too. But I know exactly where mine is and I have no intention of getting too close. That's all part of becoming conscious, mature human beings who value those around us, as well as ourselves, too much to trample on them.

Now, get your toe away from that line.

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