why, Julia, why?

part 3 of 3

as soon as i learned about vipassana—from a friend who’d just completed his second course—i wanted in.  my first sentences after he explained the process were, “i want to do it.  and i’m staying the whole time.”  why on earth would i do this to myself?  i’ll try to explain. 

first, i’m inclined to trust gut reactions.

secondly, i liked the challenge, the purity, and the promise of liberation as long as i follow the rules. 

third, it’s basically saying, “deal with your shit.”  and who doesn’t need to do that?  in the words of lauren hill, “how you gonna win if you ain’t right within?”  the weight of carrying what no longer serves me is more of a burden than the energy it takes to let it go.

fourth, the timing is ideal.  i cannot stand New Years.  every time it rolls around people ask what i’m doing and i think, “noooooooo.  can’t we fast forward through this part?  catch up mid-month?” 

not to get on a soap box, but it’s another commercialization of life—buy this dress, drink this cocktail at this party and then you’ll be happy.  even if you don’t buy into that, i can’t live up to the perceived pressure to do something amazing or poignant.  politely excusing myself from the whole affair and returning with an incredible experience under my belt once everyone’s settled down sounds ideal.  so going dark is the best option.  (and i get to call it “going dark,” so there’s that)

and yes, i realize if i were completely at ease with my decisions, i wouldn’t care that i don’t do anything incredible for New Years.  maybe vipassana will help with that.  in the mean time, i feel like, “oh, you’re going to Vegas for New Years?  i hope you survive!  i’m fixing my soul.”

that said, i don’t know what to expect.  there will be a lot of hard work and discomfort, and maybe a breakthrough at some point.  mostly i do not want to speculate or get attached to any outcome.  i grilled my friend but he wouldn’t cooperate much, insisting i go with an open mind and see what happens.  and he’s right, because if he told me he saw pink unicorns on the fifth day and i get there but no unicorns cometh, i’ll be extremely bummed, start judging my abilities, etc.  therefore, i’m just going to show up and experience it completely.  but i am also very, very nervous.