“A Journey of a 1,000 miles must always begin with a single step.”
And with that single step, we never know where the end is. That place we call “the unknown” or “mystery” is where we are heading, but only by starting and being available to show up in life, do we realize that moment is “right now.” What we think of as over there, is really inside us and not anywhere else. Every step is our “right now”. Every step that we dare greatly and show up with, we are changing our destiny. We have no idea where we are heading when we take that first step, we just know we have to start.
Transformation ALWAYS takes place on the inside before it shows up on the outside.
It’s really amazing to me that it’s been 10 months. Mostly because when I think what can be accomplished in 10 months doesn’t seem like a long time, but in actuality, it is quite a long time for me.
Time and space are phenomenons. We perceive them in linear time, when they really don’t exist in that fashion, but our minds perceive them that way. It’s not easily understood what non linear time means. I have had many occasions to experience non linear and it’s always incredible to believe when it happens. My weirdest one I think was when I had a fever one time a few years ago. I remember laying in bed sleeping and I must have gone into a dream. The dream felt so real though. It was experienced as a very long time and when I pulled out of it only an hour had passed and I thought it had been at least a day in a half. I was very confused.
When it comes to healing the heart and mind, time can prove so differently. When healing occurs, the subconscious allows for the natural flow of grace and miracles to continue to pour in. And when it does, nothing appears the same, does it? Life feels richer and honestly, I can not imagine what is in store for me. I know it’s big…..
As I move into the home stretch of my year with only 2 months to go, I can honestly say I have mixed feelings about having done this challenge for a year. I am still aware of the resistance I have for my relationship with my family and my husband, but I am making progress. New thoughts are generating new patterns and new space to be created and with that healing is happening….but it feels very slow. There was a lot in my heart that needed to “bleed” out in tears. I feel I have made a healthy turning point. Phew…. I don’t think the last 4 months are my “normal”. It has been intense. This really has been brought about because of the commitment I have made. Because of it, I feel the “no turning back” part has been exhausting since I’m not at the destination that’s waiting for me. So it is with the concept ” A journey of a 1,000 miles begins with the first step”.
It really is a journey, one with obstacles, winding roads and breathtaking vistas. Some days I feel it is endless in sight. Over the last month, I have been pushing forward with the “brave and scared” and “brave and bold” as if one foot is strong and saying YES! and the other foot is weaker saying, “Do I have to?”. This is life and this is by far the most understanding I have to feeling it all and doing it anyway.
I have much going on behind the scenes that I have not revealed. I have been holding many surprises back. My apologies, but that really is how one holds the energy of creation to bring it to life without dissipating it’s forces before its time to come out of the dark. Over the next couple of months, I will be showing you what I am talking about. How I have made steps forward in showing up and daring greatly.
If all goes well, I will have much of it out in the open by the end my years commitment (which is May 5th). With all the “behind the scenes” that I have been doing, I have not been writing so much. I can only allocate my time/energy/brain to so many things and I have had to be present with what keeps showing up for me. I am sorry to not open up just yet. All good and great things have their time and space for when they arrive.
You will not be disappointed though. 🙂
“When you hold on to your history, you do so at the expense of your destiny.”
Bishop T.D. Jakes
I just love this quote. It pretty much sums up what I am doing. When we have spent a lifetime defining ourselves from our story, we limit ourselves. Breaking out of this allows one to unfold and discover just how much energy is freed up for you to create. Create your life. Creative expression comes out in a million different ways for everyone. When you let the history go, you are free to create. Free to be and do anything. You have the passion, the drive and the energy to move in any way you want to. Isn’t that worth its weight in gold? Why would you choose anything else.
I know the ego wants to believe and have justice for whatever it is that you are holding on too. Sometimes, all we can do is take baby steps. But with each baby step you take in creating and expressing yourself as you are right now, without the story, you allow life and its mystery’s to live through you.
This morning I witnessed a lot of emotions wanting to surface. It really did not matter what the story was. The emotions wanted to be released. My mind gets really unsettled when stuff wants to bubble up and out in overwhelming ways. So I made every effort to allow it while creating and expressing. I put on my favorite music and for 3 ½ hours I painted. I allowed myself to be nourished by the music, by the colors and by just being present with what is.
I love watercolors. I love that spring wants to emerge out of me. And I love that I found a way to connect with what comforts me while working out the releases. Nothing bad happened, I found myself feeling the music and creating what needed to be expressed without the story. It was powerful. I am thankful that I was able to have this time to myself. Here is what I made.
“Like with all newborns, life is growing, developing and becoming who we inherently are. Let my rebirth allow such joy and freedom as part of my existence.”
Funny how it never really crossed my mind when I started this year commitment that there would be a significant change at 9 months….as if I was birthing myself. It just never crossed my mind. And yet, I would say some kind of transformation took place the last month. Some kind of metamorphosis took place and so even though I don’t feel transformed, I know I am transforming.
Deeper inside (as in looking at myself from the outside in), I see the multi-layers of my mental thinking. Externally (in my mind) I appear weaker and more exhausted and still needing the rest from the last month of sickness (others around me see something totally different I am sure of that). However, deep inside I feel clearer. I feel aligned and I feel stronger and even lighter. It’s such a weird thing to witness.
What I feel is happening has to do with my ego shedding. The external represents all of that. The ego is experiencing so much contrast and the heaviness and emotions and fears and all its wants to keep me held back. I think January was about my life completely unraveling. All the threads. The inner mind is aware of what is happening and my guidance system is working really well. I was talking with a friend yesterday about how as I have been painting I have been losing weight. Some of the weight loss was from my fever bouts where I couldn’t eat, but after I got back on track, my appetite changed. I am less hungry. It crossed my mind that I am feeding and nourishing myself/ my soul at a real “aligned” place and I believe it is giving me what I need. Because of this, I am less hungry. I am still eating and I still get hungry, but I think I have found a difference (a balance) between real hunger and the habit of eating.
It is so hard to know whether or not all these changes and getting sick have to do with the new year and the new energies that come with the year of the wood horse. Or if it is really from all the personal growth and birthing after 9 months of my commitment. What I know for sure is, I have accelerated my personal growth to a point that my soul has expanded to a place that my body is no longer capable of sustaining without some form of integration. The battle between the drive to move forward and live my purpose and the fear that holds me back from my past is evident. So here I am. This is what has brought me to therapy. (At least one of the reasons.). I must find the stamina, the practice and the momentum to integrate this into my body. My intellect has hit a place of “too much input” and I don’t want any more until I can release and move and sustain what I have.
I have been told that exercising/moving my body is a must to integrate all of this. My response is always the same…that it always makes me cry a lot. It’s always been an issue. Doctors look at me with three heads. Friends look at me without any compassion. And years go by with starting and stopping exercise routines, so often because the emotions that come with the movement tend to be over the top. Frankly it’s not fun. Who wants to go for a walk when all it does is bring tears. My acupuncture the other day said something really profound about this. She said, then make it my practice. If it takes 5 months to get past all the tears, then it means all of the stuff that is coming out in the form of tears is stored in my body. This is integrating. Uggh! For me though, it feels like a lifetime of tears that move out. That feeling when things feel “forever”. So my goal for this year is to embrace it.
In fact, my new affirmation that is bringing me much peace is “I now digest and assimilate my life’s lessons with grace and ease.” The bottom line is, it’s time for me to stop running from them. It’s time for me to stop fighting them. It’s time I accept the lessons, as it’s so crystal clear that they don’t go away. (As much as I wish they would.) They need to be digested, assimilated, and integrated into me. And so, I started painting them. Yes, what better way than for me to visually see the truth through colors and let it nourish me that way. I have 6 life lessons that I see. Loving myself, Listening (whether it’s listening to myself or others, I am not clear yet. Both make sense), opening up, receiving joy, letting go and being present. These are my lessons that have shown up throughout my life. Perhaps there is one word to describe several of them, but this is how I heard it. So I will paint each one and let the vibration of that be a compass of healing. I started the listening one yesterday. When I ask what it looks like, I heard “breathing space”.
My journey of self discovery, my journey of integrating my physical body and my soul so inner peace resides and my journey of living authentically continue. I will remind myself often that it’s the journey and not the destination. So I will enjoy the ride.
I pray that my work I am doing has the ability to help others undergo their own transformations. Sometimes it just feels comforting when we know we aren’t the only one going through these growing pains. I have also updated my artwork on my blog under the tab of inspiration/art work if you haven’t seen it yet.
I am finding a light within the dark.
Ease in the ache.
Lessons I have yearned for and have avoided at the same time.
The duality of shame hides in shadow and leaves a footprint with each day that passes in my life.
Today something profound has shifted within me. An opening of worthiness came to life and a profound healing like a balm has soothed a deep place within me. I am capable of believing I am worthy of everything. Just like when I did an allowing journal, I spent the morning speaking a worthy list. I recited everything over and created hundreds of things I am worthy of. Each phrase sank deep into my cells and into my heart. I opened up to it and I am receiving it. It was truly a lifetime moment where it all came in.
Feeling deep heartfelt gratitude this morning. I am coming out of my cocoon I have been in. Words, expression, movement and ease are flowing. I am thrilled to be here today. May everyday just get better and better.
Yes, I am going to be stringing this subject along for a while. It’s just too good to pass up. Today I watched the live Q & A session from Brene Brown’s Part 1 class and she shared something that just hit the hammer on the nail. This is for everyone and I thought I would share it.
She was talking about how to cultivate and set healthy boundaries. A topic that we all are challenged with.
Worthiness – is about alignment with our values, authenticity and being in our own skin. We can’t cultivate worth without boundaries. Therefore, we must do the work. And what is the work? It’s practicing it. It’s learning how bad we are at doing this until we get it right. It’s being imperfect at it while we do our best believing we are worthy and important.
Perfectionism – If I look perfect, live perfect, and do it all perfect, I can avoid shame, judgment and criticism.
It’s a way that we protect ourselves from hurt.
This is so powerful because this is obviously how I think. (And I am an out of the box person so you can only imagine how my mind carries all this). Brene continued, “what leads us into this idea is that we believe we can save ourselves from being hurt AND therefore we believe we can make ourselves more loveable.”
BUT we can’t avoid it, these are human experiences. So rather than perfectionism saving us, we carry it around like a 20 ton shield. And it keeps us from being seen.
So really, this is like a 12 step meeting. Hi my name is Shakti and I am a perfectionist. I believe that how I live is really about protecting myself so I don’t have to worry about being shamed, judged or criticized. And in so doing, I believe I am protecting myself from getting hurt. (When really I am just snuffing out the joy in my life).
And to make it even more spot on, it really is all about what other people think, so I am lovable.
How’s it working for me? Not good.
So the solution of practicing boundaries is a whole other thing. When I do practice boundaries, I think I become a boundary bully and overshoot them making people mad at me. Or worse, I do a terrible job and clean it up with pleasing. Oh the drama in my head.
I know you all can relate to this. I am just speaking it out loud. The being lovable part for me was such a deep need growing up that I think I always carry it around in my personality. Especially, because I believed I wasn’t loved in my family for so long growing up, I have spent a lifetime seeking that lovability. But what I am realizing is you can’t buy lovability outside of yourself. I believe we are all inherently lovable. We just have to believe it. We have to let go our limiting beliefs so we can receive what is already existing within our authenticity.
And this is why it’s called “Growing Pains”.
And this is where the magic lives.
“Healing myself took a thousand times more courage than fighting the world ever did. But I am living proof that a bent and broken life can turn around.” Teal Swan
This is written on Teal Swan’s blog (formerly Teal Scott) yesterday and today. You can read it here. It was a powerful piece that as soon as I read this line, I knew this was the platform that would allow me to find words to where I am.
Perhaps it’s the ego saying, you are SO close to overcome this stuff, that we want to make sure that we are louder than you are, so you won’t have any say here. It’s very possible, because the contrast in my life is big and loud and making it impossible for me to move.
Some of it really is my reserves tapped out and I am running on empty. I just need to rest, but life with a working husband and small children doesn’t cater rest. So the energy output to make the changes in and of itself, is effort and makes me tired.
So where am I? Well, I could say in quicksand, but that doesn’t fee true. I am in the center of the all the shit that I have refused to speak out loud. All the shame and all the fears and all the denials and all the resentments/angers and all the hiding have unleashed in me and are facing me head on. I have yet had anyone to talk it all out. So as it keeps coming out, I keep swimming in all of it. My relationship with my husband, my relationship with my son, my voice to set boundaries so I may have balance, are all being felt in every direction. Either I stifle and please, or I speak up and piss people off.
The fall out from being sick surprised me to see that things got worse in my closest relationships. (As opposed to bringing us closer) Setting boundaries for the sake of “taking care of my need to rest” pushed a lot and the push back brought up more stuff for me to chew on. My hope is I can find the courage for more transparency in the months to come. It will help so many people. I just don’t know where the courage will come from.
Asking for help was one of the lessons that has come out of this. So now spending half of January seeking help is throwing me up against that wall. The wall of worthiness, the wall of shame, the wall of embarrassment, and the wall of fear, not to mention the wall of courage. When I was really really sick with the cellulitis and didn’t know what I had, the “I don’t know what to do” was really strong and the lack of clarity was really strong and who do I reach out to wasn’t clear and not being understood and not being heard and not being appreciated for how much physical pain I had been in (with the children here and my husband out-of-town for the week) was all too much for me. Mostly because I wasn’t in my right mind. It created a lot of anxiety and emotional fall out (because it was very serious and I could have died). Still not wrapping my brain around that one because I was so out of it.
Some of the other lessons about Adrenal Exhaustion and letting go of control have been a huge eye opener. I had no idea that Adrenal Exhaustion is about feeling responsible for EVERYTHING. Then I learned the solution to adrenal exhaustion is TEAMWORK. NOT THAT! Oh No! Seriously walking into a big conundrum here. Letting go of control. Letting go of how I work with others. How do I let go and surrender and allow myself to not be inconvenienced or better yet, have other people inconvenienced by the choices of letting go and the dreaded Asking for help. For me I have been questioning so much about this fine line between directing traffic and surrendering to Divine Will. This Divine Will is what I aim for and what I pray for. For Divine Intelligence to intervene and bring me what I need, so I can stop controlling all the outcomes everywhere because I am so afraid of what will happen if I don’t. This is a life lesson for me that is painful! It is causing me much distress. I think part of the asking for help when I was sick had a lot to do with safety. Trusting what came to me was going to be ok. But because I wasn’t in my right mind, I wasn’t thinking clearly at all. So I can not berate myself over this. I just wish it had gone differently.
I have been inspired so much by Rachel Stafford’s newest blog post “One Bold Move, Two Healing Words”. I feel she is a guardian angel and has given me so much freedom to believe that I will overcome all of this. I believe I will, I just need the therapist. I suspect 2014 is going to be my “breakdown/breakthrough” year. Can’t wait! not…
She shares a universal language to all of us (especially moms) about “taken on too much and allowing the distractions to take over and not be present” and how to release yourself from that bondage. This quote from Teal Swan sums it all up for me. The courage it takes for me to heal my shame and my fears are far worse than fighting the world. I am grappling with the “How to” open up to all that is swimming around me that has come up. And all because I have so much fear of what “other people will think”. The whole perfectionism that Brene Brown is talking about. It’s slapping me over and over again. The being scared is out winning the being brave. Maybe that’s why all I want to do is paint. It’s the only way I can express myself right now in my truth and authenticity without being afraid of what other people will think, but painting does nourish my soul and fill me up, so I don’t think that’s the only reason I am painting.
Perfectionism was not something I felt I was (I just thought I always had high expectations), but now I realize it is everything that I am. The pleaser, the “oh it’s ok, don’t worry”, the “if I don’t do it, it won’t get done” believing. Finding the tools to overcome this will be such a relief! I look forward to the day that my practice of wholehearted living is living me and not perfectionism.
I am grateful to have found two things with great clarity this week. One was a beautiful exercise from Louise Hay. It was EXACTLY what I needed to do. Write down on paper, I love myself, therefore.….and finish the sentence. Keep writing it down and then say it out loud. Do this everyday. It’s powerful. It’s so powerful that I actual believe some of the things I am saying now. I think the one that resonates the strongest is “I love myself, therefore I can be happy.”
The other exercise I started this week is a guided meditation in my head talking to all my parts saying (for example talking to my heart, kidneys, lungs, and then doing it with my family, etc…) “I love you and accept you as you are. You are perfect in your imperfection.” This has brought me great peace. I am fighting the perfectionism battle with in. Accepting that everything is perfect in its imperfection is something that I have never done and it is something I must now do. Starting with myself and everyone around me. If I don’t, the suffering that is embedded in my psyche will do me in. I can no longer live in silence and the silence is not silent in my heart and mind. It’s desperate and desperation is where the fight for courage will possibly get me through.
I still haven’t seen my therapist yet. I went to my appointment two weeks ago only to find out I went to the wrong place (he’s one of the only therapists with a different office/location from that group). I needed so much to start 8 weeks ago, but today I get to finally start. I hope we are a good fit. I won’t know until I get there. The waiting has been difficult because more and more stuff keeps ripening with no outlet for me. I did finally call the mental crisis hotline one night just to talk and cry. She said something really helpful. She said I don’t need to know how to fix anything, I just need to feel better.
So I am doing what I can to feel better. Painting makes me feel better, resting makes me feel better and the writing exercises and meditation I posted are helping. Although, I did more than I should have the last 2 days and woke up with a terrible sore throat as the damp cold penetrated in me again. My immune system and my body are serious about the rest thing. I am in a conundrum as to how to get the rest and the help with young kids and a working husband. I don’t have family that can come and take over while I take a week or two to do nothing in a nice sunny place. This is where some of the internal fighting is. In December, I knew I needed to do less, but it wasn’t heard and now I have the fall out from that. So, now I need to step up to really take care of myself and I haven’t a clue as to how to make it real. I am taken back by this fear and lack of courage I have to speak out. I pray the answers will reveal themselves soon, because I am very afraid of what will happen if I don’t.