Becoming Wild

I used to look right at things and then look away, as though I had never seen it. I had been hurt, disrespected, used and abused in my life – and still I looked away, as though it never happened.

Why do we do that?

I pretended it wasn’t that bad, explained it away. Is the reality and the pain too much to bear? Is there an innocence that won’t allow us to see it? Why do we see something and not see it at all? I have this uncanny ability to see something then paint it to be what I wanted it to be.

We can be convinced anything, especially our own wrongness. When we finally get the courage to speak up, there’s a backlash, the kind that leaves us thinking we shouldn’t have said anything; we shouldn’t have spoken up.

How can we remain silent when our soul is screaming to speak up?

We learn to stuff it down but there it festers and become passive aggressive. We can’t beat them so we sort of join them. Instead of addressing things directly, we make sideways comments because we can’t face the backlash and keep grounded so we internalize it.

We learn not to feel, not to express ourselves or be ourselves.

One day we wake up and realize we have no idea who we are or what we believe in. The one thought that kept me hanging on was “no one is wrong all the time.” I knew I could feel things that people directed to me and contorted myself to make them happy.

But they were never happy and neither was I. No one is happy when they are controlling others and no one is happy when they are allowing themselves to be controlled. Because we are disconnected from our soul, from who we really are.

We don’t want to rock the boat so we just go along with it even when we know it’s not in our or the other persons best interests… but it’s easier. Until we face the truth we can’t change anything. We become emotionally paralyzed. Unable to make decisions, unable to be ourselves, instead being what everyone else wants and needs us to be.

And inside we die a little more each time.

As I became acutely aware of how much I was changing myself to be what others needed and wanted, I had lost myself in the roles society had given me. We put on masks in each area of our lives, segmenting ourselves into who we need to be.

We are afraid of being rejected. We have little faith in ourselves and because we aren’t grounded in who we are, it’s easy to let others take the lead, make the decisions for us and it’s easier to become what they want and be included than be ourselves and be left alone.

We don’t believe we deserve anything better, so we accept the crumbs that are given to us. We became what they wanted us to be because someone different meant being someone better. So we bend until we break to become the version we think we need to be.

To cope with that we paint our pictures to be what we want them to be. We pretend life is great, we pretend we’re independent and have it all together. In reality our soul is dying because she’s pushed down far too long.

She wants to be seen and heard for who she really is. But she’s not who you pretended to be and as she claws her way out of you because she can’t take one more forced smile, one more minute pretending everything is great when it’s not, you are acutely aware of the people who think you’ve lost your mind.

They say you’re different; you’re changing. And you struggle, as they want you to get back in that box and act the way you’ve always acted. But you can’t; I can’t because we are done living a pretend life.

A life of no substance no longer interests us. We were born wild but we let the world tame us. We tamed ourselves. To fit in; To be enough; To be a good girl. We forgot we can breathe fire and we forgot that we do fit in, somewhere. It might not be where we are now. It might not be with our birth families or the communities we were raised in.

But we do belong. Somewhere. And it’s only when we stop needing to belong where we don’t, can we find the place we do belong. It’s human nature to want to fit in, to have love and connection.

We are conditioned at a young age to please others – it starts with our parents reminding us how to be good girls and boys. We get punished when we aren’t pleasing them and praised when we are. As we move through life we meet all sorts of people who condition us to make them happy. When we don’t we are punished. Silent treatment. People pull away. Leave us. Tell us we’re wrong, selfish and we hear the not good enough message again.

We please them at a cost of ourselves. Until we wake up and don’t recognize who we are anymore. The wild within me was calling to be unleashed. And I no longer wanted to contain her, to pretend, to live a boring life pleasing others and compartmentalizing myself to fit the mold.

I was living a fake life. Being someone I wasn’t. Someone I thought was better. Becoming wild is about facing it, feeling it, letting it bleed until the hurt, the pain is gone and left in it’s place is nothing but the truth.

Sometimes we can’t know why things are the way they are. Sometimes we will never get a deeper understanding of it. Maybe it’s not to be learned at this stage in this lifetime.

Maybe it doesn’t need to make rational sense. No one else needs to get it or understand it, except us. It’s our truth. We’ve been doing what’s best for everyone else our entire lives. Maybe all that matters is being who we really are and letting the rest fall away. If we don’t fit somewhere, leave. If we aren’t good enough for someone, leave.

A wild woman knows her own truth, her own inner wisdom and she follows that. She follows her own inner radar and not one set out by society or anyone else. She checks in with herself and adjusts her course based on her own inner knowing.

In becoming wild, everything slows down, our soul does the talking, and we march to the beat of our own drum. We stop playing the victim because we realize when we do we’ve stepped off the track. We are not living. We merely exist. And when we find ourselves doing that, all we have to do is look within and ask the next right move.

Becoming wild is about letting it all be what it is without the need to change it or make it prettier or make it better. It’s about allowing it to be what it is.

Inside each of us is a wild one, the one who knows the truth. And while people might tell you that truth is wrong, in the stillness you know the truth.

It was there, in the stillness, I discovered that letting myself be manipulated was a way to tame myself, because my wild soul wasn’t made to fit it, it wasn’t born to fit the mold, it was born to break it.

Sometimes it’s really hard to be different and stand out in this world. It’s easier to let us be labeled and have roles to play. We forget our wildness. We have the entire universe within us and a wild wisdom that no one can tame.

The wild isn’t a place outside of us; it’s a place inside of us. The more time we spend in that space, the less we need to change ourselves to fit in because fitting in is so boring and not for the wild at heart.

The real challenge is staying wild in a world that is always trying to tame you.

When we censor ourselves, let ourselves be loved conditionally we are trading who we really are for our wildness, for our authenticity. It comes from a place of not being enough. Whenever we find ourselves there, we must return to the wild, return to that place within us that knows the answers.

As I let it all fall away, I realize that my only responsibility is to keep my connection to my Wild Soul, because it’s there I know the truth and in the end the truth we know is the only one that matters.

Stay Wild,

Tonya Whittle

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