I’m standing in a middle of room with many humans walking around. Someone is talking to me about something. I don’t know what. I smile to indicate I know what. I pretend, mostly to listening. I nod my head, eyes trying to feign interest.
Oh shit they want me to respond. How do I get out of this.
“Sorry, umm. It’s late. I got to go. I need to catch t *insert fake person* before they disappear”. I exit, stage left. that was too damn close. I manage to escape that convo before they got to the point. Can they still see me? Do they know I was just trying to get away.
How did I get here? Who are these people?
Here I was at a networking event in parts unknown, Germany. An event most people in my line of work/education would take pride in attending. But, I felt sick. I want the nearest exit, and a breath of new air. I don’t belong here. I walk all the way home, forgetting to breathe sometimes.
Autopilot was my life. I remember many nights, long shift, evening classes, fast-food meals in strip mall parking lots, finally home in time to for a few hours of shut-eyes. I enter my driveway, my vehicle parked in front of of my house. Is it my house? All the houses look the same. It is my house. Dammit. I don’t remember how I got here. I knew how I technically got there, I drove the car.
And I remember leaving the store, but I can’t recall what happened during the minutes between the store and my parking lot. Minutes lost, my consciousness dangling in someplace I don’t recall. Where do I go when I’m on autopilot? Same place we go when the world becomes too much. Same place our childhood spirits went when those things we can’t talk about, happened.
Has this happened to you? Have you left your house, locked the door behind, keys ready, ignition igniting, making the car move. five minutes passes, and a thought is born…,
“when did I enter this car? Where am I going? Who am i? Did I lock my apartment door?.
That feeling, smarter folks call it disassociation, spiritual folks call it disconnect, but I call it the Zombie Autopilot state.
This happens when you aren’t present, conscious, mindful, or witness to the happenings in your life. Shut-down and shout-out every experience, and only come back to your body to react. Some of us naturally experience this once in awhile, others are forever in this state. And that’s what we will discuss on Monday’s podcast. Auto-piloting through life. heavy stuff for me.
We get really good at pretending we’re conscious or present, but the body, mind, the soul, if you believe in a soul, all of it disconnected, disassociated, and the rest of us, powered by the autopilot. Imagine living like this for decades? Some make it to their senior years, and can’t even recall any of it. You know stuff happened, but your mind, in its early makings, learned long ago and too well, how to check out and run from the present and your body. You can’t remember what you’re doing in the moment, why, and how it began.
I’ve been living my life in autopilot. Many of us do. I never once stopped to contemplate my story, the parts of my being. Who am I? What have I endured? What have I learned? What do I want from this world, this lifetime? Have I paid attention to the feeing/privilege of hot water running over my body as I shower. The aroma of morning tea, the sun grazing your fist. Was I ever present for any of it? Or am I just a machine mimicking learned human behaviours, and replicating them in my daily life. Well that was me. Now I don’t drive, I walk slowly, taking in everything. I allow myself to feel every moment in its entirety, and only show up to the places I planned for.