Park City-My Visit Back

Life touches me so deeply and my mind is wired to take it all in, reflect, and learn all there is to learn from it. My mind, in the back of all the stimulation of society, screams for this. However, this is not how normal people act in social settings. So, because I have wanted to fit in and belong since I was a child, this openness to let the world naturally touch me, move me, and change me is being pushed aside and controlled. In order to fit in, feel good, and stay away from pain, I control; I control my mind, my image, and my actions so they match a certain criteria of “normal.” The consequence of this quite popular goal in life is the creation of neurotically strong, irrationally defended walls inside my brain for the unconscious goal of not letting any experience (especially the stuff that hurts) fully touch me and making sure my true face is covered in forced upon masks in hopes I don’t become an outcast.

Alone = painful.
Control = no pain and all pleasure in each moment our eyes are open in a day.

The experience I had with Haley (someone I knew back in Park City) tonight is an example that brings this a bit more to the light. She actually gave me a very important compliment that I seemed oblivious to in the moment. I acted as if it was not significant for her to say. Well, reflecting back now, I see it as a potent compliment and I want to dive back into that conversation…yet it’s too late and the experience is in the past.

She told me that my writings are uplifting. I didn’t even ask her which one she enjoyed most or the one she found most recently. This may not seem important on the outside, but my motivation for sharing my insights publicly is to uplift and help my family and friends. And, I didn’t even know many people read my posts. Only a few likes here and there that I cherish. I had no idea I was touching more than what was “liked.” Bottom-line this could have been an intense, emotion-filled conversation starter for me, but I figured “keep things light…always keep things light.”

Instead of truly seeing and feeling this moment, I seemed to want to get away from the experience. In social settings, I jump from person to person, activity to activity, and I rarely stop to relish in the beauty of a face-to-face conversation with an individual. As a whole, the event becomes superficial and the experience washes away as quickly as each moment passes. Well, now, I sit here, wired here at night, and not willing to distract from these thoughts and emotions because my mind is loudly calling for my attention to this day of reminiscing. I mean, come on, I see so many faces who I put a majority of my time, effort, and care into during my 2 years in Park City, who were ecstatic (especially the housekeeping staff who are just incredible at revealing their true emotions) to see me on this some-what surprise visit to Park City, and I think I can just let it sift by my consciousness without any nagging from it. No way. So, as my mind screams to hear what it has to say, I don’t flip on the TV to entertain these thoughts to the back burner to soon be forgotten; I don’t scroll through Facebook or Instagram to distract these emotions with stimulating pictures and stories; and, I remain still as I listen to what my mind knows to be so important: “meditate, reflect, and learn from this very eventful day…for us.”

  Here it goes. I am taking it all in:

  • The pride in my work ethic and compassion for others, and that big group of people I left my mark on
  • The pain from not living to my truest self in the most present experiences of the day
  • The clarification needed (by writing this post) of the intense speed of what was my untouched thoughts and feelings needing acknowledgement.

I have learned that insights are not able to be changed or grown from right away. Intellectually, I may understand what I have written above so clearly; but, experientially, it hasn’t clicked yet. Experience takes time and is the most important aspect of learning…or else wisdom is empty with no soul, no love, and no tangible truth.

And, with that, letting life touch me in all occasions (alone or social) will come to fruition in my character soon. I will remember this intellectual insight through tomorrow’s experiences and slowly work to engrave these reflections into my consciousness and actions. Who cares if I cry or act strange in a situation…being genuine, in the most passionate form, will trump whatever awkwardness or abnormal action revealing itself in the moment. I will experience how much my mind truly wants to be involved during my experiences and not just as an afterthought. It really doesn’t want to criticize me after. It wants to help me in the moment so that I use rational, common sense when I can tapping into it.

This awareness and reason inside of us can be used for such peace of mind and love. It may be here to help us survive in a more comfortable way than animals, but it was meant for more than we are tapping into. We close it off. Our fear of pain is shutting down our abilities to think rationally. Look around at all the mind-boggling truths of human nature and our society. We barely know ourselves or this world. It is truly sad. But, it is absolutely possible to make an individual change and begin creating a sound thought process and an enduring passion and care for, at least, our own self. The consequences of efficiency, love, and the ability to fully see the beauty we hold as a human being and that nature holds as the most massive, uncontrollable force in our consciousness is enough to desire a shift in purpose.

About Kevin Carlstead

I graduated as a hospitality and psychology student at University of Denver. I spent most of my teenage and young adult years in the hospitality industry. I am still searching for what industry suits my personality and talents so that I can feel more meaning throughout my days. My current career pursuit has me enrolled in a graduate program to become a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist. I was born and raised in San Diego, CA. I love music with something to it. I love life with something to it. I have made it one of my purposes in this life to integrate both of these things that I love. This blog and my own songwriting has given me the platforms to do that very thing. Thank you for reading.
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