“If I contradict myself, I contradict myself. I contain multitudes.” —–Walt Whitman
“It’s either black and white. No question.” I resolved myself to this philosophy in my twenties. Adopting this view narrowed my thinking. As I learned and discovered new qualities about myself, I found that interests, opinions, and pursuits are not always like a straight line. There are bumps, curves, and edges that may arise. In short, there is so much grey. I have appointed this grey as a place where contradictions live. This is a more comfortable place, one that is forgiving and allows for many versions of self.
Sometimes my own contradictions surprise me, but I’ve learned that embracing two opposites also pushes me to be more present. Instead of fighting or wondering why conflicting points of view exist, I’ve learned to accept rather than analyze. My contradictions? There are so many.
I long for solitude, but feel content in a large arena surrounded by fellow concert goers listening to music at the highest decibel possible.
I love Mary Oliver poetry and also enjoy flipping through the pages of US Weekly and People.
I am connected to technology but refuse to let go of my paper calendar.
I sleep with two blankets at night with the air-conditioner on full blast.
I love keeping things organized but at least once a week my closet floor is a mess, littered with clothes, towels, and books.
I enjoy attending author signings and presentations, but will also curl on my sofa on Sundays and watch football.
I run and workout, but will also enjoy a can of soda or Sourpatch kids.
These contradictions lend to interesting paradoxes. In my twenties, I think some of my more serious diametric opposites might have led to place of confusion and strife, but now, it strums like a place of acceptance.
What are some of your contradictions?
IMAGE: CONTRADICTIONS BY MARCIN WICHARY VIA FLICKR UNDER A CREATIVE COMMONS LICENSE