Jan8

Being Intentional About Freedom

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I did something recently that has really given me pause to reflect.  I gave up my freedom without even realizing it.

Now, freedom is a central theme of mine.  I had an enormous amount of freedom as a child.  I charted my own course through my early years with minimal guidance.  As a teenager, I became responsible for myself, and that freedom continued.  By the time college came around, I was adept at making my own decisions and managing myself.  I was free.

After college, I took my first job as a developer.  I LOVED the work I was doing. It was right out of “The Hunt for Red October”, the Cold War, submarines and sonar operators, Computer Science and Mathematics.  Serendipity created moments of huge impact, like filling in on a project for a colleague who was ill and ending up working on Ford Island in the middle of Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. Or, being selected to represent the US in a summer research program at a NATO base on the Italian Riviera.  I was free.

Then, I decided to get married.  I took my obligation as a wife very seriously.  My life took on a different focus and rhythm. And, for 25 years, I did my best to be the wife I thought I needed to be.  But, I gave up my freedom.  And, I failed my marriage.

So, I set out on the quest for freedom.  I became responsible for just me. I managed only myself.  And, serendipity touched me once again.  I discovered my life purpose. I came to understand my distractions, like my relationship with money, and my concept of time.  I found deep and profound love.  I was free once again.

Recently, I got caught up in a fantasy. And, within a few weeks, the fantasy became a reality, with a plan, a timeline, and monetary dependence.  Even though this reality aligned with my life purpose, my pattern of self sabotage named OBLIGATION emerged. I felt that I HAD to make this work because of my deep sense of obligation. Instead of feeling exhilarated, as I felt when indulging in the fantasy, I felt restricted and confined. I became restless. I was not free.

What have I learned from all of this? That I have not been intentional with my freedom.  That my relationship with freedom is still fragile.  And, that I need to add FREEDOM to my life purpose.  So, I’ve put this reality back into the realm of fantasy.  And, I am free.