Commitment Phobia


Unlike Rick Astley, I have a fear of commitment. I have the opinion that if I don’t commit to this blog it will probably wither away and disappear, based on my tendency to start things and not finish them. And the tendency to start things, do them for awhile, forget for awhile, do them some more, forget, put it off, feel I “have” to do it “or else,” etc etc…

I also have the opinion that if I commit to this in a way that involves actually developing a good place for me to type, some setup that is comfortable and doesn’t create more pain for me, that will help alot. I suppose it makes some sense since if I have a decent place to “do this” I’ll be more likely to do it, right?

My fears connect to experiences where I have committed to something or someone and haven’t followed through, had to cancel, did half the work and didn’t finish, etc… Often unfinished projects and commitments in my life relate to my shaky, changes each and every moment, health. When I make plans to get together with a good friend, it’s because I really WANT to. I’m not a bullshiter that way; making plans that I may or may not do. When I commit to something with a friend and end up cancelling b/c a rash of stomach issues has suddenly come up, or a migraine hits, or udder exhaustion suddenly covers every part of my existence, or my back “goes out,” I feel guilty. Disappointed. Somewhat untrustworthy. Afraid that people won’t like me anymore because I don’t follow through. The fear opens up into scarcity issues, and I begin thinking that “no one will ‘really’ love me, that there is not enough of whatever I am focusing on at that moment to go along and I will be left without, overlooked, forgotten.

These feelings come up similarly if I’ve committed to an activity, a volunteer assignment, a regularly scheduled appointment or such. Do most people really grasp how shitty it feels to drop out of something that I’ve really wanted to do, something I really enjoy, something important to me, someone important to me? Well, if you don’t get it, let me tell you, it feels rotten.

A mixture of shame, disgust, anger, frustration, sorrow, lack of control over even simple things, lack of control over my body and what it decides to do when. A very basic and deeply rooted anger comes up regarding why I am not able to do things that other people do, or that I used to be able to do. The folks I know with chronic illnesses go through similar feelings, of utter devastation and sorrow when looking at how circumscribed our abilities have become. We remember when we were different, many of us, even those of us that have experienced pain and illness for years, it’s usually gotten progressively or suddenly worse in fits and starts, and we can look back a month, a year, 5 years, and see how incredibly different our abilities are now. Yes, we are stronger in ways. Yes, we’ve learned more about our abilities and limits. But damn, it hurts and can feel like a hot knife pressed to the heart, looking at what we were.

I am going off in so many directions with this post, that I’m not sure there is any cohesiveness to it at all. So I can put it aside, look at it, work on it, edit it, reorder my thoughts, make it make more sense, but the danger there is I over edit, cutting important things out, second guessing myself constantly,

So do I hit PUBLISH immediately or not? That is the question I am living with right now. Cue the tension filled music. Cue the smoke machine. Cue the camera shots of cup after empty cups of coffee, showing my decision making, my struggle. Cue the video of me wrinkling my forehead, scribbling, crossing things out, adding things. Cue a shot of the dictionary and thesaurus close by. Cue a shot of the person, never fully reaching out, never fully becoming, mired in their fear of what is, of change, of acceptance.

Cue the spotlight, it’s my time to shine.  Image


4 thoughts on “Commitment Phobia

  1. I think that you’ve expressed yourself well. I can understand how difficult it must be to orchestrate your whole life around things beyond your control. Remember – the things you DO do are important (haha I said do do) and the things that you can’t do will become potential opportunities in the future.

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