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Waking In Limbo – What A Horrible State!

13 July 2009 6 Comments

Waking In Limbo – What A Horrible State!

Issues: … coping … motivation lack … vacations … taking charge … games people play … happy? … unhappy? … fun? ….

Just visited my cancer specialist doctor today, then home after eating a nice sandwich. Then a nap I just woke from. I woke into limbo. What does this mean? I woke into my bodily self?

Which is more depressing? Waking into ones cancer self or into limbo?

What is limbo?

Trust me, you don’t want to be there. Maybe you know this already?

Mine has been a profession helping suffering people, and that included a few who defined their suffering in life as a disposition to suicide. I didn’t lose anybody as far as I know. My own analyst said she lost one patient, and that she took suicidal people extremely seriously.

Back to this later ….

Limbo, which I just experienced now, is a state wherein you are motivationless to live. You just can’t find any motivation to live. You know your previous motivations but you know they are no longer identified with and so your real existential state is one of limbo.

  • Limbo is when all you are doing in filling in your time on earth, and you know it.

In such a state you cannot distract yourself from the truth. You cannot play games.

Games Cancer People Play – My title, thanks! Don’t steal it from me. Don’t even write about it unless you have serious cancer. I have serious cancer. It is life-threatening, but not in how you might think.

This actress that just died at age 62? Her celebrity friends who eulogized her said what a courageous and loving person she was through the whole fight to win out over her cancer.

Are these people real?

Of course not, weeping at funerals and giving their words to the media.

Actors and actresses have a hard time ‘finding the real me.’ I have known a few of them and followed a number in the media, as well as in their movies.

  • Being in Limbo is when you are in a motivationless state. You have your sensation experiences in the body, but is that all?

What will you do, Strephon, when your body deteriorates still more due to the cancer or aging, or whatever?

You know, I could die at the core, and all else would follow, if I am in limbo too long, if I am without motivation, something more than life itself to live for.

All this mother-love stuff? As a psychotherapist I have helped many mothers and a few fathers with their suffering. Mother is so in love with child …. But is mother in love with self?  She does not know who she is as a person. She realized unconsciously she would be in a permanent state of limbo, of being life-motivationalist, if she did not get herself pregnant and have children. Two is more than one.Get an unconscious man, stroke his seed sac, get him penetratingly hard, talk about the joys of being a father, having a child of your loins yourself, a carrier on of the family destiny, the genetic heritage, of who you are.

Now I have lung cancer for sure. The specialist confirmed it today. I have the serious kind whose purpose is to kill me.

I ask for what are the next symptoms to come and she says little and reminds me that she does not tell all because that would just depress me.

I wonder how it feels to withhold vital information in life about your own possible dying, but she seems confident and cheerful, and always wants to make time for me.

Of course I know what she is doing. My beautiful doctor loves me. Stay alive Strephon. Let her help you to the max possible.

Of course … of course … of course …!

Let her help you, Strephon.

When your motivation goes your life goes.

Her motivation is strong to help her patients, but does she realize yet that her patients are not her, though they are a powerful motivation.

She goes for vacation to near Venice, Italy, for three weeks. A delight lights up her face. The wife of my tennis friend, Mark, is already having fun packing for their summer vacation in southern France once September comes.

Fun, fun, fun ….

Strephon’s Vacation – Where Is It?

I tell myself again, you can’t go anywhere, Strephon, to escape this thing, to escape your real life.

  • How many vacationers do we lose when they realize on vacation they are not having fun and they can’t have fun?

Stopping The Navy From Seducing My Woman

That great big navy admiral who wanted my Norwegian Vilgunn several years ago at the night club in Crete.

Our circle of acquaintances were having our alcohol drinks and talking about nothing. Some said little of course. His wife was there with him in separate seats sitting silently.

Hey, this guy is making a play for my Vilgunn, I thought.

So I turned to him, and in the hearing of everyone else I said something like, ‘Commander, straighten up! Attention! You are not allowed to have my partner for sex, even if she wants to give it to you. She’s a No-No as far as you are concerned.’

He looked at me, the big, strong handsome fellow, but said nothing, keeping his drink in his hand.

As I write this the neighbor across the street, like for years, lets his dog bark but does not play with him, which is what the dog wants or he would not bark. I have complained, more at the beginning of living here.

The Netherlanders don’t listen very well. They smile at you, keep their cool. They don’t say it, but they mean, ‘what’s wrong with a dog barking?’

Ah, got the point. Walking your dog keeps you alive in your middle class image now that your children are grown. ‘That’s my dog, you think. I know that dog. He barks all the time at strangers. What a boring dog but I love him.

It’s called ‘walking the dog through life …

That commander was big of body. What was to prevent him from rising up and throttling me?

Nothing really, but I knew the military mind, I knew to take command. I had to teach the drinking Vilgunn and him both a lesson.

‘What’s more,’ I said, ‘Look at you? What do you think of yourself. There is your silent wife across the way looking so unhappy. What’s the matter? Don’t you know how to make each other happy anymore? You come away on vacation and have nothing to say to each other? You don’t have fun with each other anymore? Let me tell you, your responsibility in life is to support your wife. Now get it together! Don’t try and steal mine!’

We had only part of the drinking circle’s attention. What did they care?

‘Come on, Vilgunn, I said. ‘We are going.’

Vilgunn was at this point her delightful tipsy self with that grin on her face and swaying over next to others. I knew I had to physically remove her, and so did, keeping an eye on my adversary.

I was not entirely physically defenseless. I had trained for over twelve years three times a week in an Aikido dojo, which gave me physical confidence.

When I got Vilgunn outside I made sure we disappeared quickly. No one was in sight following us. That mostly only happens in the movies. We were vacationing in Crete, not India. The europeans dominated in Crete in summer time.

Vacation In Limbo

So that is vacation everybody, when a lot of people feel in limbo, feel lost without their regular life motivations to define them.

You won’t get this from the friend and office stories people tell after their vacations. They tell positive whether it was positive or not.

I don’t go on vacation right now, or maybe ever again. My caring partner does not go on vacation right now, but may she have a long life! What she gets with me is more exploration of soul into the depths of core being.

It’s what everyone wants but they don’t know how to get there, and they seem too afraid to try.

There are no vacations in Never-Never Land.

Don’t even try!



  • Jeremy said:

    Dear Strephon,

    That is a marvelous vacation story. In mine, Jeremy Nightengale from Sherwood Forest and his guitar ran away from Samos with my brown-eyed beauty. She later return in Rhodos.

    Now we are not traveling on vacation either. The economy. But its monsoon season and raining hard all day and night long. I love it. A great time to bring together parts of my life’s work and finish pieces one by one.

    Your book title is a good one, and if you could write it using much of this material – it wouldn’t be hard to make it diary form – you could help even more folks.

    I read about spontaneous remissions of cancer. It has to do with people believing that the body can heal itself and so much so that the body too believes it, and the pancreas goes about secreting the healing fluids. One would project a self-hypnotic phrase, like, “My whole body is healing itself every moment of my day.”

    You are teaching me much, including new ways to think critically and creatively.


  • Regan said:

    Limbo? Limbo to me is waiting for something – a specific something. It means not being able to get on with life because of the thing that must happen before you can act. It means WANTING to get on even though it’s not possible. To me it means having the motivation to get on but not being able to.

    Your recent posts have been about perhaps not wanting to get on at all – lack of motivation. I feel very sad that you have lost motivation and hope it is temporary.

    Maybe motivation isn’t something you “find” or “lose” though. Maybe it’s something you create? Maybe you could do a helpful experiment for us on this blog and see if you can “create” motivation? Create it through a visit to the library, making the time to meet someone new, writing a comedy sketch?!!

    I await the results eagerly!

  • Strephon (author) said:

    Jeremy – I have written down your suggestion: “My whole body is healing itself every moment of my day.” This makes sense to me and is still open in case another voice is saying: “My whole body is now in destruct mode.”

    The point for me is not just to say these things but to emotionally feel them, as well as their other sides so that I affirm authenticity within my being. This is why letting out the dark side sometimes helps. It shows you are not playing a game by making yourself look good, even heroic, which can be archetypal inflation.

    I can at this stage make this affirmation because I feel I am facing the destruct side as well emotionally and perspective-wise.

    Happy vacationing inside!


  • Strephon (author) said:


    Thanks for your comment here. I have lately lost motivation to live, while still having some motivation left, and I am trying to face this state, feeling I have avoided experiencing this motivationless state much of my life. It’s terrifying. I want to be honest, authentic, alive to my total existence, so even if this limbo state is partially a result of cancer symptoms, and my specialist doctor saying, ‘I don’t tell you everything that could happen because that would be too depressing to you, I feel I need to experience it.’

    Well, yes, the doctor wants to keep my motivation going. She says, ‘Do you want to make a next appointment? I want to keep seeing you.’ It’s almost like having a new lover. Oh, she wants to see me again and enjoy my company. I want this also and to be able to enjoy her company. Dating means new life. Connecting with a good doctor at my present crisis state can also evoke the ‘new life projection.’

    My method here, which may be difficult to understand, is to experience emotionally my motivationless state, to experience it, not just think about it. In dreams sometimes you do let yourself drown, go down the waterfall, jump off a cliff, even be shot and killed. This can be called experiencing the dark side.

    One of my great teachers, Dorothea said, ‘You go through it, not around it, or stopping and retreating or resisting. Another great teacher for me, Elizabeth Howes, said, ‘You don’t give yourself over to the dark side. You contain it, even pray for help to not let it take you over.’ Talk about confusing! So I have done both at times.

    My principle seems to be authenticity. If it is happening the way it is happening, experience it directly, for it is your existence now.

    Your comments on Limbo has rich content. I want to take the time for a meditation on it, see how it applies to me.



  • Arthur B. Treadway said:

    Dear Strephon,

    Thanks for this entry. But is this the first time you didn’t feel motivation for going on living? I cannot believe that. You wouldn’t have gotten here so far along, if you had not given birth to yourself many a time.

    You have many times consulted yourself and found and faced the abyss, but then you have remembered that you came here on a mission and went on to facing it, to fulfilling it, whatever it was. Now what is it?

    It’s good to read your writing here. May you keep it up for a long time yet.


  • Strephon (author) said:

    Experiencing limbo, the motivationless state, may be the appropriate response here. I hated experiencing it but I let go to it.

    As I said somewhere, Arthur, in my barely twenties I could not get out of bed at times. I felt why live another day. Even suicide would be too motivated an act. I could not move my body for a few minutes upon waking.

    I realized for myself, God! I have nothing to live for. I can do things, like get good grades, but what for? Why suffer through all that work and sacrifice to accomplish something?

    I realized also, I had better get some motivation to live life. So many others are just existing, working at routine jobs and taking alcohol and drugs as their pleasure for existing. I saw through that. The only real joy in life, I thought, is through accomplishing valuable things. I kept searching until I came across Elizabeth Howes and her teaching from the wisdom Jesus, commit to living the most valuable life you can.

    There is no true knowledge without commitment, I discovered.

    I committed.

    Now at the near ending of my life when I am being attacked and weakened by illness it’s like the guillotine has already fallen and I see the big and bloody blade in front of my face, and I think, what more is there to accomplish. I can’t afford to waste the lessening energy on things that don’t count for me any more.


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