Fitting In

Somebody asked me recently, “Where in the world do I fit?” She had just experienced the shocking realization that IVF may not be her answer… a baby may not even be her answer. That, in fact, living the family life may not be her answer. Most of my early life was spent trying to find a place where I fit. I believe I have lived in about 34 different places now. Scanning back over my past, it seems like I have lived many lives in these 52 years. I’ve had multiple career paths, relationships, husbands, children… chapter after chapter, none of them made me fit. My children have often commented how I am not the typical mom. I don’t hang out with other mothers. I never did the playgroup thing. I don’t like parties and large social gatherings. And yet I anguished over the fact that no matter where I went or what I tried, I didn’t fit in. It seems that I dance to music that the rest of the world doesn’t hear.

One day I realized the most obvious thing in the world: “I don’t fit.” What a relief!

A friend pointed out a biblical conveyance of this understanding:

“The foxes have holes and the birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to rest His head.”

Now, I know this wasn’t talking about not fitting in with cultural or societal expectations. It is referring to a much deeper truth that the essence of what we truly are, at the core of being itself, cannot be contained. It has no home upon the earth. It will not fit into roles. Yet, do I live this every waking moment? No. I still try to find a place to rest my head. What life situation is going to give me everlasting peace? None. No relationship, no child, no health condition, no financial situation will ever give me rest. Because what I am at the core of my being is peace itself.  It doesn’t need a place to rest its head.

Without looking one moment into the future, where do you fit, right now?

Without the child, the happy family, or the image of a happy future?

Can you notice that even the attempt to make yourself or your life fit into any prescribed image makes you discontent?

Again, I am reminded of the Descartes’ philosophy, “I think, therefore I am,” which I could never wrap my mind around. When I don’t need to think or imagine my life into a particular way of being, I can rest in the realization that I am. That’s enough. I don’t need to fit.  When we aren’t trying to fit into the world, perhaps life has an easier time coming through us. After all, children aren’t little pre-existing beings looking for a place to fit in. They are the unborn expression of that which is uncontained.