Get a Spine

I have always thought of myself as very adaptable. I grew up in a family that needed me to adopt certain behaviors. Be good, get along, do well, make ours lives easier. So for the most part I did as I was trained.


While studying Developmental Somatic Psychotherapy I identified my go along to get along tendency as my preferred Movement Style. Horizontal. This means I swing horizontally between options. I tend to be interested in and open to most things. I like this about myself. I consider options over and over and over again because they all seem like good possibilities. I have often said I would make a very bad juror because I can see each side so easily. Maybe this because I have a Gemini moon.


Or…perhaps, because in my family verticality, another Movement Style, was highly discouraged. Verticality creates more of a sensation of having a spine. (A very good thing to have by the way.) It is a kind of assuredness that comes with simply knowing your yes’s or no’s. I would like to have more of this.


In last weeks blog post, A Love Letter, I told you that Tom and Heidi were teasing me. I didn’t go into detail then, but I will now. Apparently they, and this week Jena was added to the list, experience me as particular. Persnickety. It all began when Tom compared me to my cat. Clea. She is finicky. She likes what she likes and lets you know when she doesn’t. I have always admired that about her. She is vertical. Not much horizontality to her.


Apparently, according to those that know me best, I can be vertical too. It seems others have always felt my spine. In fact my mom often lamented, “Patti,” with the emphasis on the eeee, “you have such a mind of your own.” It wasn’t meant as a compliment.


I am intrigued when others see me differently than I see myself. Especially when I respect and trust their intentions, unlike my mom. It is an opportunity to widen my lens of myself. It is also a bit threatening. What if I don’t like what is the view finder?


So this week, with bravery on my side (I know I am courageous) I have been leaning into my cat self. As I do I am noticing, owning, and reveling in my pickiness. I realize it has been me who hasn’t felt my spine. I haven’t owned it. I literally felt my spine this week and the subtle difference that made in my certainty.


Here are some of my findings. Nothing earth shattering but fun to own outright.


* I dislike, will pick out, spit out, sardines. No exceptions.


*There is such a thing as the perfect purse and I will look for it for months and months if necessary(which I have been doing including across Spain and France-I found it in France). I can recognize it quickly and will pay, almost always, whatever it costs. It has to look a bit funky, feel like butter, smell like good leather and not be too big or too small. Call me Goldilocks.


*I only eat my granola, ice cream, yogurt, chili, any thing in a bowl with a soup spoon. Tea spoon are a waste of my time. They frustrate the hell out of me.


*I take big bites of food, which the above preference supports. I want the sensation of a full mouth of food, many favors and textures in one bite. I have tried eating more daintily, like a cat. I get bored. I guess I am more of a dog in this case.


*I cannot litter. I will chase a receipt across a parking lot, risking personal harm, to retrieve the fly away culprit.


*When someone I love wants to do something, the something is secondary to being with them. I pick the relationship first, what we do is secondary.


I look forward to knowing more. I imagine moving into my choices with a clarity, verticality, that will allow me to trust it is a right for me. I know the risk. Others may not agree or like my choice. Then I face my other age old dilemma…my fear of getting in trouble.


But let’s not go there today.


(As always I invite you to join me in my journey.  Find your spine. Your horizontality. Your Verticality. Play and have fun with it. I would love to hear what you discover!)

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