Our society glamorizes the unreal, the fantasy. The temptations are everywhere to buy into the facade instead of invest in creating the long lasting or deeply rooted.
Online, phones, television, magazines, dating sites, pornography, drugs, bars, comparison, the list of ways to get away from our true selves and what's real goes on and on and on. Really real is judged, undervalued and abandoned because “real” is so often posed and strategically positioned through technology. We are being set up to be addicted to the facade. The filtered. The fraudulent. The fake sense of intimacy. The fantasy is convenient. There is a sense of safety behind screens and filters. It seems more secure to have a buffer. Fantasies are thrilling and elusive, like chasing the oasis. Chasing the facade can rob us of real and the rewards it brings.
Real. Rewarding. Reliable. The fantasies can be fun, without a doubt, and they can be fatal. Losing what’s real and right in front of you because you are chasing the fantasies happens all too often. Drinking, drugging, sex, the sins of the modern age and every age I suppose. The illusion that the grass is greener and perfection exists somewhere else.
Real requires courage, risking vulnerability and facing places that need nurturing, love, patience, healing... not easy stuff. Fantasy is easier, but it is fleeting, always leaving unfulfillment and a need for more. This is the making of addiction. It is an industry. Fantasy is strategic. Addiction is capitalized on and breeds even more regret than it does money.
Regret is born from getting lost in the fantasyland and finding out after real is gone. When the high wears off and the card limit is hit, when it’s time to turn the screen off and come back to right here and now, will you turn over in bed to someone there? A real life friend, lover, partner, companion, a vision, value, support or spiritual connection?
I have experienced so much loss due to the rampant fantasies of our modern world and addictions they create. It is heart wrenching and agitating, often leaving me feeling helpless and unwanted. I cannot compete with fantasy. Believe me, I have tried. It's hurt me in such intimate ways, chasing the fantasy portrayed through technology by way of comparison and competition. I have succumbed, just like those who I had created real life with, each in our own ways. The phantoms of addiction, chasing the oasis of exciting and unreachable, leave fractured homes and hearts in their wake. I've lived through this and survived to talk about it. Painful, disappointing, triggering and sad in the deepest kind of ways. I hate that fake has become so widespread, the hatred comes because this all has hit too close to home. The addiction to fantasy and chasing it down the rabbit hole has taken people I love in dark directions and led to incredibly painful losses. The truth is, we can all only choose for ourselves, moment to moment, answering "will I dare to be real?" and then living it.
Real is imperfect. Real is rare. Real, when found, is also reliable. Real is the moments between eventful photo worthy ones that make up life. It’s the material of amazing pieces of literature and memories that make us tear up. The unfiltered smiles and unbrushed hair. The sharing of dreams and sheets, when there’s sex and when there’s not. It’s the real vulnerability behind the veneer. The washing each other's backs and popping zits. Giving up the favorite pillow. Taking the already used towel. Standing in line. Real is inconvenient and challenging and character creating. It requires feeling and healing. It’s inspiring and approachable and what lingers long after the fantasy wears off. Real creates impact. It connects us to our humanity, to the humans around us. It’s unsexy and beautiful and messy and magical. It requires effort and calls us higher.
I want real. I also want the fast path to growth, to become different but still be true to me. I long for convenience yet am not satisfied with things unearned. I compare. I fall into fantasy like everyone else. I am imperfect and want to hide behind filters. I just don't. Or I come back to real and raw again and again after I do. I have felt the heartache of falling into fantasy and chosen the rocky path of finding my center. Comparison can be as much of a fantasy as liking image after image of people you see instead of conversing with the person next to you. This has been my fantasy achilles heel. Painful and powerful, fantasies have woken me up to the value of getting real and calling out the rampant addiction I see. We deserve real.
I am not as tight and taut as most I see on IG. My outfits are not as cute or sexy as many I see in magazines or sliding across the screen. I get bloated and wear the same boring uniform on a regular basis. I can pose like anybody else and choose not to. I'd rather compare and create quietly than compete and combust in the process. I don't have the allure of women on porn sites, as frisky as I might be. I would rather use my imagination than see someone act, especially when it comes to sensuality and the like. I have less money than entrepreneurs posting on Facebook. I fail constantly. My flaws are countless. I love my family. I believe in people even when they disappoint me. I feel deeply. I hope beyond belief even when it's blind and unbearable. I am a good woman. I am raw and ravishing in my own times and ways. I am the real deal.
Real means recovering who we really are and letting the immature and irresponsible go. It's not easy.
Recovery is the work of warriors, for the courageous and committed. Reinventing and rising above the norm is rare. It's also remarkable.
Darcy Helene Meehan
As an advocate of Reinvention + Recovery, I work with clients to achieve balance, alignment and purpose in all areas