Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Three's A Crowd

On my ride to work this morning I was zooming down a hill, grinning like a fool in the dawn's early light. And no one much oh say can you see'd, since it's early. But that doesn't stop my brain from haranguing me.

"You didn't leave on time. You aren't going that fast. You should worry about not doing so great at work today." (I'm doing new stuff at work.)

And then my heart-me yelled out, "Shut UP! You are wrecking it! This is AWESOME!"


I thought about how, all my life, I've had not one, not two, but three voices in my head. There's just-me, then there's ego-me, then there's heart-me. And ego-me has a big fat loud mouth. Ego-me drowns out the other me's since it is, after all, an ego. It's pushy and always has to be the center of attention. Regular me is just-me. Usually background noise. Heart-me is shy and reserved, not very outspoken or chance-y. Just-me comes up with the ideas, then the other two are like the life commentators- like sportscasters, but without sports, only plenty of keeping score.

I started holding heart-me's hand and listening when it speaks up. Really listening. Not that wishy washy bullshit where you say "I know, I know" to your sweet self and then listen to the same old song and dance from ego-me. But in the "I HEAR YOU!" way you imagine things might be at some churches where people are swaying with their eyes closed and their hands waving around in the air. Amen.

Getting sober is such an excavation- a mystery. Where did this shit come from? And then: What the hell do I do with it? Well, here's what I do: I puzzle and struggle and then I figure something out and life gets easier in my head. I move closer to forgiving all of me for my past hurts. Realizing that I can ignore ego-me, or even hear it but just not listen was another one of those moments of a-ha that seem almost stupid since I should have realized that, oh, about a million years ago.

But yay! I'm nurturing my heart-me, my soul. In my head, three is definitely a crowd. Too many indians, not enough chief. I needed some crowd control- so I found another voice in my head: bouncer. But heart-me is the bouncer, which keeps me from being Sybil, since everyone knows you can have up to three voices in your head and still be considered OK. (And, just in case, that is not really true.)

All of this is going to take some practice, practical just-me reminds me when ego-me is steadily murmuring about how this blog doesn't even make sense. All of this seems so "me, me me" but that's the way getting sober is: you have to be selfish for a while, get the sharks out of the water, and then you invite folks over for a swim. I have to be self absorbed and all curious about "me" since things were so out of whack before when I was drowning all the voices in my head. And they still are, but in a nice way that is all about: me.


  1. Love this post! The Ego loves to dig at us, doesn't it? And the idea of the heart-me is awesome. The Ego will always be there, no matter what - trying to tell us one thing, pull us down a dark road, etc. but it's with the insight and love and experience of being sober and moving through these things that we can relinquish Ego's control (or perceived control) over us.

    There is still the Me that was created and put on this Earth - the majestic, wonderful, positive and vibrant Me. It's just a matter of who we nuture :)


    P.S For some reason I have not been getting your new posts in my WP Reader. Sorry about not visiting lately...gonna catch up now :)

  2. Amy, I really love this ongoing writing you're doing, talking about the inner voices and how you deal with them, how the heart voice is getting stronger and even yelling back! It's so true how the inner complainer can take you out of the wonderful now. A few years ago, I was reading a lot of Thich Nhat Hanh, and he always talks about speaking to the inner voices. In his case, he speaks gently to then, offers tea and cookies, and asks them to sit quietly until he has a moment. I have tried this, but I'm not always so patient. Reading your post, I realize it doesn't matter all that much what I say to my inner voices. What matters is separating them out, so I don't identify as "me" a voice that's working against what I want. And there are so many voices. I'm taking your lead and working on finding the heart voice. It's hard work, but I trust that it's what I need to do. I really appreciate what you're saying here. You can tell your ego voice that your blog is a huge help to others! (Of course then the ego takes credit, but that's another problem.) Anyway, many thanks for writing.