Losing You Was My Becoming

Last night I struggled.

I was triggered during the day by something my mother said in passing and by bedtime I was unwound. I was face down in my husband’s lap balling. It did not stop there. I cried when we went to bed. I woke up an hour after going to bed and cried some more. My husband held me and talked me through it as best he could.

This morning he let me sleep. He got up with little bubby and handled the morning routine. Two hours later I came out to a quiet house. Little bubby was taking his first nap, my husband was sitting on the couch watching the news on low volume. I was greeted by his smile and by the wagging tail of my excited Lucy.

I pat Lucy’s head and crawled into my husband’s lap.

I have been holding in all the pain and grief. I have been trying so hard to remain functional. The lid is off.

I asked to feel my pain and The Universe obliged. I am in pain.

I have decided to attempt to talk honestly with my parents one last time about our dysfunction and working towards healing as a family. If this message falls on deaf ears, as my previous attempts have, that is it for me. I will not subject any of my babies (internal or little bubby) to this swamp.

I am raw and reeling and trying desperately to keep my head above water. AND there is a deep sense of peace rising from my power center because this is the decision that has been waiting to be made and finally I am here.

I never wanted to be here AND somehow I have known I was coming.

Right now I do not feel big. I do not feel much like a hero. I am though and even if I don’t feel it, I know it is true.

Because here I am, going through it, not running. I am doing hard things. It is so hard.

I am scooping everyone into my lap and I am walking out of this place we do not belong…

And I am not afraid.

losing you was my becoming

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Re-Defining Safety

Fear, shame, and doubt popped up this morning to tell me untruths about the danger of what I am doing. They were warning me about the calamity that will come from allowing myself to walk openly out in the world with my heart exposed. What you are doing is dangerous – you will only get hurt! 

I scooped my little ones into my lap and held them close as I examined where these messages were coming from. What I did not do was believe the messages. I did not shrink. I can no longer pretend to be what I am not, and I am NOT small.

I started to wonder what these littles learned about love and about feeling things – any things, all things.

To love openly is dangerous.
To feel what we’re feeling openly, freely, publicly, truthfully is dangerous.

This is where disconnection happens. Right here in these untruths.

This is where we shut off our heart, our soul, our creativity, our ability to be with each other and experience connection.

We become hard, rigid, afraid, empty. We create a void and the only thing that can fill that void is the exact thing we are running from, the thing we told ourselves was dangerous. Love is the missing piece. Allowing ourselves to feel what we feel without shame, without fear – this is the only way to fill the void and reconnect with our truth about who and what we are. Some people call this our essence, some people say light and love, some people say sacred, some say holy. I like all of these words, right now the word that has been coming up for me is color. I am bright, boundless, exploding, illustrious color. The word is not what matters, the feeling that rises up when you know you are home in your truth – that is what matters.

When any part of me wants to play small I think I am ultimately looking for safety. I have to keep showing all parts of me over and over and over that we can be BIG and safe. I am comfort. I am love. I am safety – These arms, this heart, this lap, these words. I am safety AND I am NOT small.

I want to take a moment to recognize the monumental growth I have experienced when it comes to holding myself in love and sacredness. In years past when shame came to visit (multiple times a day) it was a tornado of an experience and I was always sucked in. Today it took me a matter of moments to say out loud, No. This is not my truth., and then hold the pieces of myself that were experiencing fear, shame, and doubt in love and gentleness. I am a good mother and all of me feels that truth deeply because of the way I have learned to love and nurture myself.

What I am doing is not dangerous, it is the most courageous thing I have ever done.

Sweet girl, 

You are. You know. All you have to do is trust.

daisy

REdefining “Successful” Communication

As I sit here in front of the next hard thing I have decided I am going to do I am sitting  in the energy and knowledge that being BIG is so hard.

That is absolutely my small self speaking. She is not used to the amount of work that goes into standing in my truth and being seen full-time. It was something I played with before, and it was hard then too, but being fully committed to owning my value and worthiness is absolutely a full-time job. Right now I feel well-loved AND worn out.

I have to go through it though, there are parts of me to rescue and important love on the other side that is waiting for me.

This particular hard thing has to do with setting boundaries and speaking my truth with love.

There are people in my life I already practice with, I have had mixed results.

Usually my level of success has to do with the other person’s ability to meet me in the energy of truth-speaking and willingness to do hard things. Not everyone is ready for this kind of communication.

You know what, I need to call bullshit on myself.

That is not true. My success does not in anyway depend on the other person. I need to redefine success if I am giving the other person the power over it.

Okay, so when my success was dependent on the other person (when I was playing small) I was defining success as the conversation going well (me feeling heard, the other person being receptive and responsive, and the interaction leading to deeper connection in the relationship).

Successful communication (wherein I set a boundary and speak my truth in love from my BIG place) is defined by me setting the boundary clearly and concisely, speaking my truth compassionately (which means holding myself in compassion and being kind). That is it. Success is defined by my action, not the reaction of the other person.

So going back to my previous statement.. There are people in my life I already practice with, I have had mixed results.

Under my new definition for success this is no longer a true statement. I have been successfully communicating boundaries through compassionate truth speaking for years.

It is not always well received but that part of it belongs to other person, I don’t have to hold that. Their reaction does not diminish my success in showing up, being seen, and not playing small.

Now that I have unraveled my former definition for successful communication and REdefined it I feel much more confident going forward with my next hard thing.

When I was small I was not taking credit for my success, I was giving all my power to the other person. Now that I have taken my power back I can clearly see that I already have a long track record of success and I am fully capable of DOING HARD THINGS!

I can do hard things because I am not small, I am BIG. I am the hero.

The Girl Who Waited

Once there was a girl who was biding her time. I’ll wait here until the time is right. The girl believed she controlled the time, never understanding that somethings have no master. Time existed long before this girl and would go on long after, but this girl was young and naive, and some things can only be learned through experience.

So this girl spent her days biding her time. I will be happy once I get this.. I will do this until I can do the thing I really want. I will stay with Mr. No Love until Mr. Love notices me. All the while holding on to the certainty that there was time for all these things and she would have it all in good time.

So the girl waited for the right time. The right time to be happy, the right time to follow her dreams, the right time to know love. She waited and waited, but instead of knowing happiness she knew sorrow and suffering. She watched as her dreams crumbled down around her and love flew further and further out of reach. Still she waited for what else could she do?

The girl felt helpless in this new knowledge that she could not control the time so she stopped trying.

What difference does it make? The girl became certain in a new belief; I will never know true happiness, I will never know true love, dreams serve no purpose in this life.

Then one day after many years of biding her time, and many more of not trying, the girl met a boy. A boy who brought with him his own set of beliefs on happiness and love and dreams. The girl began to see that although she does not control time she is also not helpless. She learned the only way to achieve happiness, and love, and see her dreams come true is to try.

When the girl stopped waiting and began to try, all the things she had ever wanted came back to her; slowly but surely one after another. First came happiness, then love, then every dream she ever dreamed.

From that day forward the girl knew that while not everything can be controlled she was also not a helpless victim of her life and the balance that exists between the place of control and lack of is in fact a very magical place.

Coming to Consciousness

consciousness

I am a page and a half into the introduction of The Handmaid’s Tale and already I am so inspired that I had to put it down to write.

First I can already tell I like Margaret Atwood the author. I do not have an answer for why, it is just a very strong feeling of  Yes. She feels honest. There is something about the way she is writing even just the introduction, she feels like someone who has to write. I identify with that. Some people choose it and work at it and become good. Some are just naturally gifted and they can choose to use that gift or not. Others do it because they have to, much like cave men banging rocks for fire, they would not survive without it. It is not about being good or gifted, it is just about the sheer need to get that fire started by any means necessary. I feel her urgency and I know that feeling.

On the first page of the introduction she talks about when she was born and then when she came to consciousness, two separate dates. You hear people talk about awakening to their life; some call that adulthood, for some it is spiritual, others their might be a right of passage involved. Whatever consciousness means to you really. For me it was 2011.

I remember my very first spark. I was sitting across a room from a man who told me that in everything that happens in our lives there is only one common denominator and that is you. You are the connecting thread between everything that will ever happen to you, good or bad, which means that no one ever leaves this life with clean hands.

I would say my true awakening came some years later, maybe closer to 2015, but it would have never happened without that spark.

There are a lot of wonderful and unfortunate truths about experiencing your awakening.

One is that you don’t get to go back after. For better or for worse once you cross that threshold that is where you are. Like Neo and the choice between the red and blue pill, once the red pill is chosen that is it.

Another is the level of clarity you experience in terms of yourself and others. You are suddenly given special glasses that allow you to see beneath the surface. You can see shadows where others (as well as yourself) try desperately to project only light. You are able to see truths that are completely hidden to others. It is like emotional x-ray vision.

Another wonderful unfortunate truth is that with great power comes great responsibility, this translates into LOTS AND LOTS OF WORK. You no longer get to be a inactive bystander in your life, you have to take action and the work is never done. It is the truest labor of love there is though which makes the heaviest days feel worth it. Mud suddenly is every bit as beautiful as crystal clear water, and everything you thought you valued shifts right along with that truth.

I am excited to read this book. I am excited for the messages it holds for me. I am excited to see how her consciousness shows up in the story she tells. I am open to receive all inspiration that I am quite certain is on the horizon.

From Little to Big Steps

Something came up while at dinner our first night of vacation. I was telling my in-laws about my new job and why I chose this particular position and why I think it also chose me.

In short, growth. I don’t have to tell them all about how I have spent the year working on my relationship with my own sense of victim mentality and how this position is the exact thing I have been called to do at this very moment in my life because of the unique opportunity it presents me to explode from the grip of victimhood into a greatness that terrifies me! No, they don’t need to know all the details. The truth is still the truth even without the back story. And my truth is I am someone with a growth mindset who is always looking for my next big lesson and I know this is it.

I was answering all of the questions to the best of my ability, knowing full well that I accepted this position without having all of the answers. I am leaving some of this to faith, the faith I have that this is where I am meant to be right now based on how it feels. Not everyone is comfortable with this kind of fuzzy emotional logic so I explain what I can and allow them to sit with their own discomfort in the spaces where I do not have answers.

My father-in-law brought up a good point while at dinner that my husband echoed soon after. What about creating an LLC? A friend recently brought this up to me as well and I brushed it off without much thought, it seemed like more than I needed to be worrying myself with at this point. More accurately, it scared me. That feels too big and I am still little and parts of me are wanting to stay little.

It is one thing to get a work cell phone and some business cards. It is one thing to handle my own taxes and track my mileage and expenses. It is one thing to allow myself to step into a clinical position and handle a real therapeutic caseload. It is a whole other thing to come up with a real business name and create an LLC.

Somehow all the rest of it still feels like I am just playing the part of therapist while taking that step feels real. It feels grown up. It feels BIG.

I understand why it makes sense. For the same reason I will have liability insurance, but still.. It feels scary and real and bigger than I am willing to allow myself to be in this moment.

Up to this point I have just been considering something, trying something out, seeing how it fits, seeing if I can actually handle being on my own and learning what I can from the experience. Taking that step feels like I am no longer trying, or considering, or testing.. I am DOING.

I would be taking very real deliberate action towards my ultimate end goal. A step that could make this more real and potentially make things happen faster for me just by putting the mere intention of truly wanting this to work out into the universe in that way.

This week I am meeting with my mentor as well as my girlfriend who is going through the same process right now. I will speak with both of them and take their counsel on the matter.

I feel like Sebastian from Neverending Story when he was laying there under his blanket not wanting to believe that this story was about him. All that needed to happen to make it all real was for him to say the name and as scared as he was and as much as he wanted to be in denial, he had already chosen the name.

bastian

I am scared and there are very big parts of me that want to stay small and in denial that my story could be everything I want it to be. Just like Sebastian though, I already know the name of this would-be business I am afraid to commit to. I have known it for sometime. I have known it because deep down I know this is my story and I know this is where my path leads. I know my purpose, I just have to commit and create by being willing to say the name out loud.

bastian1

Starting Small with my Biggest Shadow

shadow

My personal work this year has been all about embracing my shadow parts and working towards self-compassion in my dark places. It has been about as fun as it sounds, and that is to say its been no fun. No fun at all.

This work came up organically for me after a very awkward and upsetting supervision last year. I see now how everything is connected. I needed to be doing this work at exactly this time in my life so my supervisor showed up for me in a way that opened the door. Apparently that was the soul contract she and I made.

So all year one by one my shadows have been presenting themselves to me and I have been doing the work, all the while knowing exactly what I am working towards: Victim Mentality. That is the piece of me that casts the longest shadow, it is the cloth all my other shadows are cut from.

It has only been in the last month that this shadow piece has finally hit home. I mentioned this before, there is a reason we show up as the victim in our life, it is because being on the other side of it, the place of true accountability is so painful.

The universe has sent me so much support as I walk this path though and for that I am grateful.

A few weeks ago my husband and I were discussing our upcoming trip to Michigan and it was agreed that this time we would make a road trip out of it rather than fly like we normally do when we visit that part of the country. That was my husband’s compromise because I am in no way feeling up to flying right now. I am terrified to fly and I just do not have it in me. My end of the compromise was to work on my list of fears.

It is a long list. I am afraid of a lot. So we agreed to start small. Spiders and the dark. I am making good progress with my fear of the dark. Spiders are a different story. So far I have not had the opportunity to work on it because thankfully there have been no spiders in the house for sometime. That will come when it comes.

Lastly I agreed to work on my fear related to driving. That is not a small one, that is actually one of my bigger ones. It is related to a traumatic accident I was in 20 years ago that left my face permanently disfigured. None the less, I am doing my work. I have taken three road trips in the last month where I was driving, that is pretty huge for me. The first was the longest and I had a car full of people. The second was the shortest but I was completely alone which is a major anxiety trigger for me when driving, especially if I have to go on a major highway. The last one was with one other person.

Next week my husband and I will be driving to an island off the coast of Georgia to meet his parents for a long beach weekend; he has agreed to let me drive part of the way so I can continue to do this work. Essentially I am doing exposure therapy to help myself with these aspects of my PTSD. It all ties into my stepping out of victim mentality as well. My husband did not know that I am doing work around victim mentality when we made this agreement, without realizing it he helped me ease into this work with small ways in which I can step out of the role of victim.

One of the biggest pieces of my work showed up finally this last week. It has always been there but because I have been sitting in victim mentality for so long I was not able to see it. I was in denial and blaming for a very long time, anything I could do to not have to own this very painful part of my story.

Now that I am aware of it signs and symbols have been popping up all over the place. They are all showing up to support me through this. Tomorrow my husband has agreed to go with me to a lecture being held that speaks directly to what I am working on. I think it will help give me insight as I move forward. I am looking forward to it and again very grateful for his willingness to stand by through this.