He's Here NowMar 27, 2023
Written Nov 9, 2022 by Sebastian Little
What does it mean to arrive?
I am the man I thought would be. And there is something weird, unsettling, and mystifying about the experience of being him.
Now, I’ll put in the short caveat:
I’ll never be done growing, learning, or deepening my relationship with myself, others, and the world
What I’ve learned in 2-3 years of exploration is that masculinity, like our own identities, is a constant emergence and becoming. Very rarely doesn’t something stand still. Rather, it just becomes more integrated and stable.
So… I’ll likely edit these words down the line. And that’s ok. And I’ll make mistakes daily. Big ones and small ones. That’s ok too.
What I mean by arrive is that I am face to face with the choice to embody the qualities and characteristics of the man I’ve always strived to be.
A man who is malleable yet structured, powerful yet loving, strong yet tender, a leader who is willing to follow, a goofball who is willing to take himself and others seriously.
I thought this moment would be more like leveling up in a video game. A beam of light would descend down and a banner would flash, “you’ve not hit ‘Man Status’” in bold lettering. In truth, I thought I would be the day I said “I do” or the moment the doctor put my first child in my arms. Instead, it was a 72-hour retreat full of conversation with powerful women who embodied their own feminine energy and were willing to reflect their experience of me openly and honestly.
Multiple times, multiple voices echoed the sentiment that I was a safe, strong, and grounded space where they were able to feel, create, laugh, cry, dream, and love. In isolation, I likely would have gratefully accepted the compliment and moved on. But in aggregate, the data points became a trend I couldn’t find the audacity to ignore.
On The Shop, LeBron James hosts a conversation with athletes and entertainers as they discuss the backstage of their lives in vulnerable, funny, and empowering ways . At one point, LeBron says (paraphrasing here), “no one gives you a user guide when you become the person you wanted to be all along” (Season 4, Episode 4 - HBO). In essence, there are no instructions at a convergence of your present and future self.
Maybe… just maybe… that’s actually the point of arriving. When you reach your personal mountaintop, it’s a call to integrate, embody and then reimagine who you are to enter the stream of becoming… yet again. Each and every expansion in awareness is a reassurance that there is more to learn, integrate, and grow. This mountaintop grants you more visibility to the next one.
^but who knows. I just got here. 🤷🏽♂️ I’ll fill you in later. But for now…
He, the man I always strived to be, is here now. And ignoring his power - my power - isn’t cute anymore. It’s a disservice to the impact I was, and am, committed to having. Surprisingly, the experience feels more like a call forth and responsibility than pressure and an obligation.
What to do next? We’ll figure it out, but in the meantime… I’ll practice showing up in spaces as though I’ve already arrived.
But, what to do now? Take stock and just be.
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