Let’s talk about mess. Ever heard someone say ‘I’ve made a mess of my life?’ They are talking about choices they have made which resulted in suffering or drama for themselves or others.
Or…’What a mess!’ a phrase we use when things are not as we’d like them to be.
Mess gets a bad rep. We have been conditioned to believe we need to clean up the mess. Not allow it to happen in the first place. Stay on top of it.
Another common phrase comes to mind…’shit happens’ and it does…all the time. Life is messy and we are birthed into this world in a messy way. In a rush of blood and water accompanied by screams and pain, each individual is born into life surrounded by mess.
We try so hard to mitigate the mess. We carefully curate our image to be clean, clear, carefree. Our mess and the messes of others make us uncomfortable. We quickly turn away, or tune out, or scroll on by.
A life without mess is an illusion. It’s a lie. It is of course possible to clean up our mess, it is helpful to be able to pull ourselves up out of our own debris, shake it off and become clean. But like everything else this is cyclical. Like how we need to bathe repeatedly to clean our bodies of stench and grime, our lives need to be cleaned up again and again.
The part we need to own is the mess. Stop hiding our imperfections and mistakes. Shine light into our shadows and reveal without shame the messiness of our inherent human-ness. Highlight what is messed up, dirty or imperfect. It’s OK. It’s part of being a human being, navigating through an imperfect world with all kinds of impossible messaging, one of the biggest being, we have to be perfect.
We don’t and we aren’t and we never will be. So why do we insist on continually trying? Because we have been brainwashed into believing our mess is bad. We have been sold a bill of goods which only rewards perfect, clean, wealthy, pretty, skinny, healthy, often white ideals. And…we perpetuate this of our own free will, on all our ‘platforms’, all the time.
Personally my life has been mess after mess after mess. Sometimes I simply wallow in the mess, sometimes I try to clean it up, sometimes I give up. I might be free of it for awhile but another mess always shows up.
How I react to the filth is what I can control and whether or not I’m honest enough to reveal it. To let my house be dirty rather than clean it up for guests. And to intuit who I can trust to be in the mess with me.
I do not really like people who cannot welcome me into their dirty house. I don’t trust them. Maybe you should’t either.