Radical Acceptance: What to Do When the Me That I Was Isn’t the Me I Am, Anymore, or Regeneration

Gwen Bell offers a list of 7 Observations about Regeneration. Number 3 shot an arrow straight to my heart:

….Things leave your system, and then you sit there wondering where the previous you went. Then, you stop asking that question.

In sifting through my belongings, deciding which are assets and which no longer have a purpose in my life, I found a watch band I bought in Santa Fe, New Mexico in 1989. At that time I was preparing to leave the country to live in Taiwan. The  watch band became a talisman, representative of the known and unknown changes I unleashed in my life. I wore that band through my travels in Asia, through my sobriety and through my transition and early manhood.

About four years ago the elastic-like metal band broke. I attempted to have it replaced by an old watch dealer in Ann Arbor. He no longer carried that style and declared it old-fashioned. I bought another watch and wore that one, and still wear it today.

Holding the old band in my hands, I understood that the earlier regeneration represented by this old, Zuni-crafted band was complete. That me was gone. That me had left a newer me  without my knowledge. I wondered yesterday where the old me went. That last cycle of regeneration ended, I believe, with my back injury in December 2009.

A new cycle of regeneration has begun with the closing of my facebook and twitter accounts. As to how long this one will last, only time will tell.