Monday, September 15, 2008

Plugged In by Patresa Hartman

My fifteen-year-old former self would balk at what I am about to say: I am so very grateful for my complete lack of originality.

There was a time I thought myself quite unique, quite different, a real one-of-a-kind. My thoughts had never been thought before, my ideas, unheard of. With insight this farout and radical, I felt strange. I knew I would never be able to walk among humans in the same way as before. And I wore this perceived separateness with pride.

Over time I have discovered more and more people who think just like me. They get breathless when they talk mysticism and cosmic intention. They have the same questions as me, the same discomforts as me, are peeling back layer after layer after layer and poking around at the meaty underneath -- just like me. It was disturbing at first, to find so much psychic twin-ness. I would read my thoughts in a Milan Kundera novel, or find common ground with a classmate over pizza and beer, and deflate: I thought I had been onto something. Clearly, I would have to work harder to uncover an original idea.

I did so want an original idea. I wanted to be grand and worthy like that.

But I am over it now. I am not original; I am not unique; I am not spectacular; I will not crack open the sky. And I am grateful. For now, when I read my thoughts in a Kathleen Norris memoir, or when my friend, Mary, echoes my sentiments over wine and sushi, instead of deflating, I feel empowered. I feel connected. I sense something universal, and I feel my circuitry light. I feel plugged in -- appropriately and meaningfully placed within something bigger than I can possibly imagine.

I do so want to feel electric.


Ami said...

It is wonderful to feel connected isn't it? Forget originality, I'll take commonality any day.

Kathryn Magendie said...

Oh, I remember those feelings too - *laugh*

Of course, I do think you are unique...and certainly gifted.

Kathryn Magendie said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Angie Ledbetter said...

You are both connected and highly unique in your creativity and way of seeing things!

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