Stories From My Closet: The One Sock Crisis

(dumping the contents of her dresser drawers on the floor, checking her hamper over and over, stomping around swearing like a truck driver)

All I ask for is not to lose my socks. Is that too much to ask? Seriously? Am I really asking too much here? Give me a goddamn break. I mean that’s so not who I am. I’m not the kind of person who loses her socks. What the f***. Don’t I put up with enough? Isn’t it hard enough to live in a shoebox and now I have to put up with only having one sock? That was my favorite pair of socks. Goddamn it, what the hell am I supposed to do with one frigging sock! How is it even possible to lose anything in a place that’s so frigging small? What the hell is the matter with me that I can’t find one goddamn sock!

Yep, the day I lost my sock was not a pretty sight.
Last Thursday, after coming home from teaching the kids, I changed my clothes as usual. And what progressed was like out of a really bad horror movie.

In the process of changing my clothes, one of my socks disappeared. I looked for it everywhere. I know it didn’t get up and walk away, nonetheless, it vanished. And I temporarily lost my mind.

Now there’s something you need to know about my apartment. It’s teeny tiny.

I kid you not when I say that I live in a shoebox. The whole apartment is less than 30 square meters. Inside this shoebox, you'll find 20 years of artwork on industrial-size shelving, a bedroom, a bathroom, a kitchen, and my office/studio. (Nope, there’s no space for a living room.)

I feel okay about my current living situation because I’m in the process of making it better. As a matter of fact, on any given day, you’ll find me happily working on my projects and smiling a lot. No lie.

So I’m just as stupefied as the next person when I TOTALLY LOST MY MIND BECAUSE I COULDN’T FIND ONE GODDAMN SOCK. Which should’ve been right where I left it on the floor. Next to my pants.

The only thing I can figure out is that there was some kinda lesson for me to learn.

I had to stop pushing so hard.

Because I was resisting, ya see. I was hell-bent on finding that sock even if it meant turning my apartment upside down. The question is, why?

I have an inkling that it all boils down to our faux feelings of control. We like to think we’ve got our lives, at least our day-to-day habitual lives, under control. And so losing a sock is like a slap in the face if you’re a perfectionist like me.

I mean, if I can’t even keep a frigging sock from vanishing in my teeny apartment, what the hell am I doing with my life? What. The. Hell.

Funny painting with sock hanging from a branch, a painting of a tree full of socks, and three little masked dolls at the top.

One sock, one crisis, one lesson.
I’m keeping the other sock, by the way, the one that didn’t run away. Yep, I’m keeping it where I can see it to remind me of the lesson here.

Ya see, the whole time I was stomping around dumping and throwing stuff, I felt like I was being punished. Yep, it’s like I was angry about being treated unfairly. Like a little kid that has a tantrum screaming over and over, Aaaaaaaaaaaaaa! That’s not fair!!! (Except in my case, I’m pretty sure my head was spinning 360 degrees and my eyes were blazing red.)

But the only one punishing me is me. Hmmm. I guess I’m still angry with myself about something. Which is typical perfectionist behavior. Duh. I should have known.

So here’s what I’m learning about resistance:

Resistance shows up in the countless ways we don’t allow ourselves to receive our good.

Take these examples of how resistance shows up as faux needs:
• The need to prove your worthiness because you don’t feel good enough
• The need to fix something about yourself because you feel broken
• The need to earn approval from others because you don’t trust yourself
• The need to search for something that’s missing because you don’t feel whole
• The need to do it all yourself and avoid asking for help because you don’t wanna owe anyone anything
• The need to feel guilty about everything you’re not doing because you should be doing more

Resistance is always there. It’s like gravity. When you least expect it, you trip and fall flat on your face.

So take note, you can be sure you’re resisting:
• When you find yourself pushing against or avoiding something over and over
• When you find yourself obsessing or worrying about something nonstop

In other words, resisting is a coping mechanism. It's how you try to protect yourself from feeling something that hurts.

And it’s faulty. Because by resisting, what you’re actually doing is putting your joy on hold.

The opposite of resisting is allowing, accepting, and embracing ease. The opposite is feeling satisfied, joyful, and optimistic.

Losing a sock is just so insignificant. And yet I didn’t wanna feel whatever that situation was bringing up for me. I wasn’t okay with accepting the reality of that moment. Because I could’ve just had a good laugh about it, don’t ya know.

I mean, why not go for the less dramatic ending...

(chuckling softly to herself about how one of her socks has made a run for it escaping to a better life)

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