Are you living a double life?


Friday night. I’m home after an intense work week. The chicken soup is simmering on the stove. Outside my windows the never ending snowfall has painted the hanging branches of the big birch tree into gorgeous white waterfalls, creating a beautiful painting along the whole west side of the apartment. My DIY-lamp is throwing a calming glow over me as I sit cuddled up in my beloved IKEA-couch in a small, but for me nevertheless way too big studio in north of Sweden and wonder how many of us actually live double lives?

Photo: Mari Gutic
Photo: Mari Gutic

I can’t remember the last time I wrote, without a goal, without a purpose, without the need of performing. The last time I wrote just to write. To look inwards into myself, to discover and to express. Write to reach what is beyond time and space. Write to visit my soul.

I used to be able to stay up day and night working on something that I am passionate about. I would immerse in a seductive state of flow where I become one with what I am creating. You know that state where you forget about everything, including yourself? When you don’t realize that your bladder is about to burst because you have been holding yourself for way too long, when you are unaware of the fact that you have been starving for an undefined amount of hours or that your back is hurting tremendously from the uncomfortable position that you have been stuck in since you began your work? When you are so deeply absorbed by what you are doing that your soul is on fire and nothing else matters.

I repeatedly find that the strict structure of everyday life creates predetermined time frames which limit the possibility for us to reach those deeper states of flow. Therefore, writing gets down-prioritized. And I miss it. My creativity. My flow. My soul. Me.

Photo: Mari Gutic
Photo: Mari Gutic

I feel as if I’m fading away within the constraints of my current life situation. The longer the time that passes, the more the sparkle in my eyes fades. The more restlessness, frustration, passiveness and resignation increase. Resentment appears.

The longer the time that passes, the more my relationships become negatively affected. It’s as if people around me are spending their time with someone other than me. Someone that I fail to recognize. Someone who is functioning on a low flame, who is not trying her best, who surrenders to the tiniest resistance and who is not dedicated to the things she does. Someone who resembles a distant, pale and passionless copy of me. She acts all the more in a way that I don’t like. She’s turning into a person that I don’t want to grow old with.

At the same time I absolutely love her. I love who she truly is, deep within. Because inside her there are magical things going on. Inside her there is a captivating world filled with life, meaningful goals, exciting adventures and beautiful dreams. They move like a storming ocean of intense longing, tempting her to let go of her foot hold, to leave that which everyone around her calls safety. That which she experiences to be a narrow cage , an “unreality.” They call her to return to the ocean and set sails towards the horizon. Release the soul and follow its’ lead.

And I can’t help but wonder – what is it that it so persistently insists on showing me?