Monday, April 11, 2011

The sum of small things

There is a certain stillness that E has given me.  A sense of calm.  I worry less, or should I say, I worry about different things now.  The stillness lets me see things now I missed before.  I walk down a hallway and see faces I would have overlooked before.  I see the happiness, I see the worry, the gloom, or the joy where before I saw nothing.

It's a strange thing this is, I'm treated more like a woman every day.  Some things are amazing.  Complete strangers come up to me and start conversations.  Women want to talk mostly about nothing in particular.  Men want to show off.  I'm still not sure why.  I'm struggling with how to handle all this.  It's not as if I'm not friendly or personable, it's just that I'm not prepared for it.  I'm shocked they want to talk to me.  It's as if before the journey started I was threatening or maybe it was just I was just one of thousands.  Now, I must be approachable or non threatening.

I'm treated differently too.  I'm the first off elevators, every one helps me with my bags.  People smile at me, this in particular being quite new.   Doors are being opened for me now.  Strange men now seem to know how to fix everything wrong with my car, and use every feature on my phone.  I'm not sure about how I feel about this.  I feel like I'm cheating, like I've stolen a 'Help Me' card from the woman's club just to get a door held opened for me, or my bag lifted on to the bus. 

Other things I'm still waiting for, waiters asking for my order first, others worried for my safety, car doors being opened for me.  Not all pleasant things either, my opinion not being considered, credits I've earn being stolen by more aggressive men,   Being judged by how I look, as opposed to how I perform. 

I know all of these things are small things but they all point to the end of the journey and I saviour them all.  I mark my progress on this path with each one of these.

I feel some internal changes as well.  I don't need to be right all the time anymore.  If someone else knows a different way that's OK with me.  I'll sit back and just be driven to where we are going.  I'll just let the men fluff their feathers to prove their status in the group.  I don't need to join the fray or argue the point just to win or just to let others know I also know the best answer.

When I started down this road I never realized how all of the small every day stuff would be so important to the journey.  It's amazing to me how all of these little things change who I am, change my whole outlook, change how others perceive me and how I perceive the outside world.  I'm amazed how these little things and interactions all add up to change who I am so dramatically.  How just having a door held for me changes the very heart of who I am.

I'm still on this journey, still lost with no maps.  I still have no sense of direction, no signpost I'm heading for.  But for all the darkness and wondering about lost, I still see myself better then I ever have before.  And I actually enjoy looking at her now.