Mama Bear

I recently found my “mama bear!”

bear

She’s been hiding somewhere. Out in the way-back country of my psyche, I suppose. She’s awake, and I am not so sure what to do with her. However, I notice these seismic emotional waves generated by an impulse of some sort or another. To be frank, the thought of convictions frighten me. Just yesterday, I researched “convictions”—specifically “woman of conviction”—to make sure I even understood the word.

looking

After some classic Google-surfing, I came to the conclusion that more than likely any human harbors some form of convictions in order to live, beyond the existence of a jelly-like substance, that is. (Thoughts of recent romp at Westport beach in Washington state, with my Aspie partner, surfacing—full on images of mutilated chunks of brainless jellyfish splattered out on the damp sand; some haphazard hopscotch of clear silicone. “What’s this look like to you?” my partner had asked. “Like a bunch of fake boobs exploded,” I giggled.)

jelly

It seems that to live, to exist, to make some mark on this earth, a person must have a strong opinion about something or another, even if that opinion is that of not wanting or aiming for convictions. When considering convictions, I am unsure about what to do with the feelings that arise. When confronted with something I care deeply about (such as loving and supporting the underdog, lost, and/or wounded), I get these tiny geyser-like bursts of upset. And from there, I plummet into a discourse of whys and hows about whatever set me off balance.

dove

Because of the complexity of emotions and the complexity of my typical thought processes, convictions—my strong feelings or collected opinions—are downright uncomfortable. It’s that simple: I have them. I can’t help but to have them. But I am unsure about what to do with the internal wobbling that occurs as a result of “them.”

Through most of my adulthood, I spent a fair amount of time sitting on the proverbial fence, kind of watching the world go by and wearing a keen, but approachable, grin. Pretty much nodding at whatever approached. I could see the reasoning and theories behind almost anyone’s opinion, without much direct effort. I could dive into infinity, it seemed. Swim out to the depths of reasoning and lap about the infinite ways in which someone’s truth could feasibly be a truth—not necessarily my truth, but sure enough “a truth.”

fence

For the most part, in recent years, I’ve practice being non-reactive. However, lately, something has shifted, and I am finding myself at that baby stage of learning how to prowl and prance; how to stick up for myself, beyond the passive (and very effective) response of keeping my mouth closed. It appears I am some infantile-newbie learning the ropes by watching the more experienced and more comfortable-in-their-own-body folks do their thing. Watching, as others I admire raise the banner for their cause and conviction. Only, in the watching I become confused, wondering how many banners feasibly are out there, and thinking how cluttered the world is with the markings of so many banners. I wonder from there, when enough is enough, and if I ought to bring out my banners, or simply stand as silent observer.

Most who know me recognize I don’t want for conflict. When faced with disagreement, I often pull in my past learnings and collected quotes from non-violent leaders. I practice the dove/serpent combo. Undoubtedly, I’ve been the dove counterpart more than the serpent. Even so the interior snake is in here somewhere. I sense him. And then, too, this mama bear. Though I still harbor this perpetual stealth-gentleness, it appears I’ve gone about and grown some nonretractile claws and sharp, dagger-like chompers. And I am not so sure what to do about it.

Samantha is the author of the well-received blog Everyday Asperger’s and the memoir that is “shattering myths,” Everyday Aspergers. She can be reached at myspectrumsuite.com

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7 thoughts on “Mama Bear

  1. Thank you for this post, Sam. I too find myself with these bursts of upset whenever something comes up that affects those I care about (the vulnerable, the abused, the wounded) and struggle with it as well. In previous years, I have always been the one who keeps quiet, the silent observer, non-confrontational type. This past year, I have learned that there are certain times, as uncomfortable as it is, when it is okay (and important) to let my ‘Mama Bear’ speak when it affects me or those I care about. (ex. when I found an NT mother trying to feed her autistic daughter bleach.) It is possible to have a ‘Mama Bear’ who is both gentle and yet with a quiet roar. After careful analysis and deliberation, my thought is that there are times when ‘the banners need to be brought out,’ and there are others when it is perfectly fine to be a silent observer.

    Amy xx

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh, I have to be *so* careful about this. I get riled and hop on my high horse — fully armed for battle — and charge full-speed-ahead… then find out I’m fighting a battle I invented, myself. I have burned so many bridges — some of them before I even got to them. At the same time, injustice and asinine behavior is just that. So, the times when I *must* stand up for something, it takes me days to recover, because I have to work so hard at keeping myself in check and finding the right balance. Ultimately, I often feel like I’ve taken a bigger hit, than I’ve managed to make a dent in the injustice…. So, I go write a blog post, and leave it at that.

    This is so . not . easy . at times.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Hi Soul Sister Sam,

    In reading your post, i can understand how weird it feels to have those protective claws and kinda be freaked out about it. For a long time, i would not want anyone seeing me angry or frustrated or even overprotective. It was just too weird to show others disagreement that i would tend to push agreeing and being insych with others (and not just letting it happen). I learned from my first relationship, how important it is to release those feelings and communicate them in some way. Thankfully, through writing, i release a lot of energy that i tend to keep tucked inside, that i become restless with all the feelings i don’t understand. Every blog post i read of yours, it always makes me inspired to see what i am going through, in a different and maybe even more healing light. Love you lots and cannot wait for you to come see my new house. ❤ 🙂
    ~Maya

    Like

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