Friday, February 20, 2004

rhetorical pondering

Self-worth ... How is it defined?
Is it by how much money I make?
How many friends I have?
What I do for a living?
Will I find it in the kind of car I drive or clothes I wear?
Is it in my skin; my face, my body?
My race, religion, gender, sexuality?
Is my worth defined by what I eat - or don't eat?
By what others think and say about me?
By how much I give?
Or take?

No matter how much I think I know the answer,
I always come back to the question:
What's my worth?

I am love.  Why am I love? And what does that mean?
I trust.  What do I trust?  And what does that mean?
I believe.  [this could go on forever ... and usually does]

While washing the piles of dishes left for dead in the kitchen, I was festering over a petty fictitious argument between me and my roommate.  As it happens every so often, I was struck by guilt.  I hate to even admit that.  Guilt is a wasted, useless emotion.  But it's multi-generational.  It lives and breathes in me, on its own.  It sneaks up on me ... like shame.  Ooh, shame.  A horrid dis-ease!  Guilt and shame go hand-in-hand.  Both are ingredients for a quick spiral down into the basins of my own private hell, where I am confronted with defining my self-worth.

Hell is not the place to ponder self-worth. It just isn't. And guilt is not the trip I want to be taking.

I guess it's important to be stripped down of all material possessions in order to return to love.  I've lived without 'stuff' for so long, I'm used to it.  I'm used to crunching and 'getting by' and living on the edge of death...the edge of poverty.

I may not have much money, but I'm not poor.
I may not have the medicine I want, but I am well.
I may be alone, but I'm not lonely.
So then, who am I?
What's my worth?


queenz43 said...

WOW! This was Powerful. Really reaching deep here. And though I don't know you personally, from what I am finding of you here, I am sure there are no limitations to your worthiness.

sonensmilinmon said...

Very deep and one that can go on and on and on ... you got the idea. Your worth isn't valued in the almighty dollar. Very good, thoughtful entry.
Smilin Mon

ondinemonet said...

For me...Worth came after nearly 40 years of looking in the mirror and never seeing the 40 different people that 40 different people wanted me to be. Worth came on one no particular day, when I looked in the mirror and said..."I love you. Now go be happy!" And I meant it! :)

itsjustusinnc said...

I know his might sound funny coming form me, but has anyone ever told you "You think too much?" Seriously. :-) What prompts you to wonder about yourself or your life in those terms at all? There are always people who have more of this or more of that. But what does all that mean in the grand scheme of things? Nothing. IMO, life should just be enjoyed--lived to it's fullest. Dreams pusued & all that jazz. :-)


isabelzmia said...

I know this, I love ya ... if that's not worth something, what is? Love, Live for what it is - beautiful.

XO, Isabel

krobbie67 said...

Part 2 - Seriously: A person's worth is defined by what they value. If you value material possessions, then your bank account will define who you are. If you define it by love, peace, etc., then you can be full of worth no matter what your circumstances might be. In my book, you are full of worth! :-)---Robbie

krobbie67 said...

Part 1 - Sorry I had to make this a two parter comment. First, time for that but I just couldn't get what I wanted to say condensed down enough. :-(

I define worth by the bottles of lotion I have. I have a ton of 'em. Every year for presents I get lotion. I've never been one to ritually apply it. As such, I've got 20+ bottles. So, in terms of lotion, I am worth gazillions. ;-)

sunflowerkat321 said...

To me, worth has nothing to do with possesions. It is defined in doing your best at whatever you choose to undertake - and finding satisfaction in that.

irun01 said...

That, my dear friend, was beautifully written. I would like for you to look at the "About Me" portion of your own journal. At the smiling, laughing face in the picture you have posted there. When you ask, "Who am I?" I believe that is your answer.

freeepeace said...

Gregg, Perhaps I think too much. But I don't wonder these things in regards to others (i.e. having more/less). I'm grateful, respectful. I always come back to some kind of wonderment about why I exist. More like philosophizing. You may wonder why I even ask. I may wonder why you don't. For me, asking/pondering IS living life to its fullest.

Kat, I believe we're on the same page. :)

freeepeace said...

RC, Similar to the questions you ask. I enjoyed reading recent entries in your journal last night.

Monica, Yes, on and on. :)

Carly, Beautiful. That's what these questions are for me - reflection.

Isabel, Thank you. Your love is worth something. Self-love is the first step to recognizing love in others.

freeepeace said...

Robbie, Your writing is always full-spectrum. Witty and wise. Then perhaps, my question today is "What do I value?"

Irun, Thank you. :) So then, my worth IS in my face? Does that mean, when I'm not laughing, I'm worth less? [again, rhetorical - and a little sarcastic]

When I ask these questions, it's not from a place of disrespect or frustration. I know my worth but I ask when I'm forgetting. It's my way back to Spirit - to remembering.

grodygeek said...

You do think too much. So? It is you, its only too much if it bothers you. Guilt is an awful thing, but sometimes unavoidable. I'll always feel guilty that I didn't prevent my breakup, even if I also realize I nothing I could have done may have been enough. I did try and that's why it doesn't reach shame.

clarity4today said...

I don't think guilt is always an awful thing. Just when it ceases to be constructive.

And as for self-worth.. Those are some difficult questions. But, I wonder. How do you determine if *another person is worthy? You give water bottles to homeless men. Obviously, you think he has some worth.

So, figure out what made you decide he did.. Isn't it just the fact that he's a human being?

bridgetteleigh75 said...

Sometimes guilt is necessary. Sometimes it makes you a better person. The problem with guilt lies with people who intentionally TRY to make you feel guilty. That's not constructive.

As for self-worth...I think that's something that you...and only you, can answer. As for're friendship is worth so very much. I just adore you, Trish Monaco. =)

XO ~ Bridgett

aynetal3 said...

We're of like mind as Donna. We figure that worth comes from being. Maybe even more than just being human because although a rock cannot feel its worth, nor a tree, all animate and inanimate objects have worth too. Look at the Grand Canyon for instance, or the Statue of Liberty, or Huney. God designated humans a special worth ... in an image of him all humans alike ... However, how or what we value seems to be subjective. Our love Kate

babyshark28 said...

very nice freee.

I hate that spiraling down feeling.
hate it.

andreakingme said...

I kind of have these conversations inside of my head. They usually happen when I feel emotionally or physically conspicuous -- when I've said something beastly, have a zit on my face, or my front-closing bra breaks and snaps open (as it did once at work).

Self-exploration can depress me ... so I avoid doing too much of it. Life's hard enough. :-P

montaukny said...

Hi Freee! Love this & the last few entries (as usual...your journal is so wonderful). Just checking in on you, sweetie. Sounds like you're doing wonderfully after the MRI & I couldn't be happier for you (& your beautiful eyes). As for the spider, I say set her free (no pun intended ~ LOL) somewhere far, far, ::far:: away!!!! Smiles & hugs for you. ~Aunt Nub~

metski715 said...

To me, being happy is more important than money and time wasting relationships. I once thought the opposite and came close to killing myself over it.

starlitemaker said...

Being happy and true to myself, and living a good life is what I'm all about. Stuff is only as good as yesterday. Great entry Freee

Hugs Beverly

miarenee24 said...

How is it, everything you write with this much feeling, sounds like a song? So very well said. And I can relate so well to every, single word... {{{Love You}}} I'll try to be in touch soon...

krobbie67 said...

:::slap to head::: I just saw the word Rhetorical! I guess I shouldn't have left a comment. Oh well. Now...tell the rain to stop already. Please. :-) ---Robbie

slowmotionlife said...

Self-worth doesn't have anything to do with the things around you. It's not what you own, or how much, or what you eat, or read, or even how you act. Bad people do good things all the time. That doesn't make them good. It's in your heart, your intention, and your love. And I'm telling you.... you're worth a LOT. :)

lucylouladybug said...

THis is a great entry Trish, and it speaks to me. I have asked myself that very question many times, and I have yet to really find the answer. And I agree, Hell is not the place to ponder much of anything. I have taken that guilt trip there and don't wish to return. I will think about this and write on my own journal.
Love you, Penny

karensull12 said...

Speaking for myself, I would say my worth is not what I have, but rather what kind of person that I am. My worth is measured by the way I live my life, by how I treat other people, by what I choose to involve myself with. It's not something easily articulated, but my worth has nothing whatsoever to do with money I have or do not have.

musenla said...

I think self-worth has nothing to do with any of those things, and certainly nothing to do with anything material. I think self-worth has everything do with self-esteem and self-respect, no matter our station in life.

I know about guilt, I was raised Catholic! It IS a useless emotion, but oh so potent and debilitating. The best thing to do is to recognize it for what it is, just an emotion, and not the measure of who you are.