Wednesday, June 20, 2007

BE YOUR OWN DAMN SUNSHINE

"It's hard to be someone else's sunshine," Kimmy Pie (http://changing-trains.blogspot.com/) comments as we're discussing the "darkness" of one individual, and the "brightness" of another, two people caught in a swirling relationship dance.

Months later I can't get that comment out of my mind, she's so right, it's hard to be someone else's sunshine. Beyond the fact that it is hard, it's not even fair. We all know someone that is so bright and light, just thinking about them makes us feel better. We can't get close enough to them. We want what they have. We want that glow, that warmth, that light. We're willing to take theirs and make it ours. So often they are willing to give it away. They've got plenty you both agree, plenty to go around.

But really? Is there a finite amount of sunshine one has to give another? If the relationship is all give on one end, and all take on the other, won't there be a shortage inevitably? What happens when the one with all the light gets totally burned out? Who's winning then?

Obviously this issue strikes a little too close to home for me. I have only one person to blame, though, and that is myself. You can't be taken advantage of without your permission. Nobody can take what you're not willing to give.

How do you reconcile a lifetime of training that implores you to share and share alike? Do unto others as you would have them do unto you? Feed the hungry, tend the poor? How do you suddenly step up and decide a little selfishness is OK? A little less give and a little more take? A little less reflecting and a little more absorbing of all the sunshine?

"You are my sunshine
My only sunshine
You make me happy
When skies are grey
You'll never know dear
How much I love you
Please don't take my sunshine away"

What kind of bullshit children's song is that? My ONLY sunshine? What a load to put on a child! I'll never tell you I love you, and don't abandon me! Key-Rist! Quite a burden. Quite enough. May I suggest the following adjustments to the song:

I am my sunshine
My only sunshine
I make me happy
When skies are grey
I'll always know me
How much I love me
I won't give my sunshine away

I feel sunnier already.

8 comments:

Deb said...

Amen, Sister! Shining away over here with the afterglow of Sisters sunshine.

Sue said...

Go, Carrie!

love.

Lee Wolfe Blum said...

It is when we have our own sunshine inside that it shines without us having to do it...right? Like when you know someone who is comfortable with themselves and enjoy's themselves...they are a joy to be around even if they don't try to. But, at the same time those of us (myself included) who can be people pleasers...end up sometimes being sucked dry! I call people who try to take away my sunshine LIFE SUCKERS! And I set clear boundaries with those types of people, or ...I just run. :)
Lee

Kim said...

I couldn't agree more! We all have to learn to be our own sunshine...and our own red visors!

Eileen said...

Well said Carrie, and a good lesson to be learned. So, so hard for me to do. My boundries get all mushy when it comes to setting firm limits, it is a goal I am working on. It is ok to say no, it is ok to be selfish, it is ok to but your needs first. Constant battle, but so crucial for spiritual and mental health. Loved this post! I am my sunshine, damn it! Love ya!

kario said...

Love your modifications to the song, my dear! I'm using that with my kids.

It's true that we love to be near those who radiate sunshine, but not because we're taking theirs -- because we're learning how to make our own with their encouragement. Taking someone else's sunshine requires their permission, and those people who make sunshine in order to give it to others are attention-seekers and enablers. You've got it right.

Funshine Bear said...

That's all I'm saying! Enough, I need to recharge, those other bears are really draining the life out of me. I need to change my name to All Weather Bear, you know, like the tires?! No one makes sucks the tires of a car dry, they just go, all weather, you know...actually, I don't know if that's a good metaphore...but the point is, enough! Honestly!

Terry Whitaker said...

Truer words...