PBP: I is for Interdependence

“We are each of us angels with only one wing; and we can only fly by embracing one another.”

-Luciano de Crescenzo

Growing up, I was taught what a lot of people in my culture are taught: independence. There was a push for it as a child: make the best grade, win the science faire, run the fastest. I was told to go out into the world, strong in my sense of self, solid in self love, before even thinking about loving another. I was told that I cannot love anyone unless I love myself first. And I was told that I have to be whole in myself, and to remain a separate and whole individual if I am ever with someone. Marriage is two complete individuals, not two people completing each other.

On the one hand, I can now step back and realize that the people telling me that all my life, are not exactly idols I want to become like. And I can see that what works for one person, does not work for everyone else.

But it is very hard to override the lessons I was taught as a child. It does not help that the living situation I grew up in forced me to turn inward and shut off; my biological father was a binge alcoholic, and the bulk of my life was spent with me trying to not be noticed by him, or anyone else. Surviving. That is what I know how to do. This actual “living” thing is new for me.

And I know this is all just a lot of information that does not seem particularly pagan, or tied to the Minoans, or even relevant. Except, it is. 

When you are taught that you are supposed to be all these things that are just not you, it is hard to be anything but lost. Hard to not feel like a failure. It is a vicious spiral downwards that I take time, and time again.

I thought dependence was one of the worst things that could happen to me. Shortly after I realized that was not the case, I also realized that I am not dependent: I am interdependent.

I cannot function properly without my partner. And he cannot function properly without me. And not only is that okay, but it is how we are made. This beautiful, interweaving dance between us ripples, and spreads, and creates, and renews. It repeats itself, time and time again, life after life, a continuing recurrence of our myth played out for the world to see – for those that are looking for it.

There is so much more I want to say. As you may have noticed, I have not been saying much at all lately. It is not that I have lost interest. It is that I am scared. The thought of writing causes panic attacks, but I want to push through them. So I am sorry for the quiet, and I am sorry for the rambling and lack of insight in tonight’s post. I am trying. I will get there.

About Reconstructing the Labyrinth

Hello! My name is Bri, and I run the blog Reconstructing the Labyrinth. I am a pagan who works primarily with the Minoan pantheon, of which I believe myself to be an incarnate member. I am also genderqueer, pansexual, and demisexual. I have a wonderful, loving partner. I am a mixed-media artist and writer with a great fondness for plaid and amaretto-flavored coffee.
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10 Responses to PBP: I is for Interdependence

  1. Nice to see you back again. I think a lot about interdependence, given my life situation. It’s a tough one to accept, but good to realise that we’re all interdependent.

    • It is good to be back! I do not know how well I will be able to keep up with the PBP over the next few weeks due to struggling with panic regarding it, but I definitely intend to keep up with this blog in the long haul!

      It definitely can be a tough one to accept. I think about it a lot as well. It flies in the face of everything I was taught, so I am really having to try to relearn it this way.

  2. hexeengel says:

    This notion of independence really is a relatively new one. Used to be that people always lived in large family groups, villages, tribes, with everything shared amongst all. From food to fire to child-rearing. And most of these tribes and villages pre-date Christianity, so to my mind, interdependence is most definitely a Pagan thing. Especially when we extend this interdependence to include the Gods (my post a couple weeks back called “Gobah” explores this).

    • It took me a while to realize the things you said. Even though I know them logically, emotionally I am still working from a framework that pushes individuality to extreme levels of independence. I do not think interdependence is solely a pagan thing, but I do think it is was more important to pagan societies back in the day.

      • hexeengel says:

        Emotional and logical acceptance are for sure different things sometimes, I understand that completely. Good on you for still trying 🙂

        No, of course isn’t solely a Pagan thing, but I agree, very important nonetheless.

      • Oh! I did not think you were suggesting it a solely pagan thing, but yes. And I will keep trying to accept things at both levels. ❤

  3. Starannon says:

    The concept of interdependence is, paraphrased, a core belief of most Pagan systems. I, for one, am a very independent person (and I wouldn’t have it any other way) but I can identify with the need for interdependence, as well, for one simple reason. I have been taught, in all of my various studies, that we are all one. Period. Any separation that we feel from one another is an illusion that we create for our own needs. Further along, as I began studying energy work, and eventually became an energy healer, this concept became even more important. The sharing, channeling, and transferring of energy; the conviction that all energy comes from a Universal Source…these things support at least some version of interdependence among all living things.

  4. Hare says:

    “I cannot function properly without my partner. And he cannot function properly without me. And not only is that okay, but it is how we are made. This beautiful, interweaving dance between us ripples, and spreads, and creates, and renews. It repeats itself, time and time again, life after life, a continuing recurrence of our myth played out for the world to see – for those that are looking for it.”

    This absolutely sang out to me – it is how me and my partner function. 🙂

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