I had a moment that lasted over 8 weeks. And, it turned into an ongoing sense of grief. Nothing, including meditation, allowed me to step outside of myself. No amount of nature seemed to help soothe me either. I was taking things one moment at a time.
I hid it for over 5 weeks pretty well. I thought! I began to slowly retrieve into aloneness. I began to use excuses to be with me. The demands of motherhood to young children at the age of 50 is daunting at times. I’ve been a mother for over 30 years. And it’s in middle age that I am consciously seeing the true work of parenting with its detrimental future outcomes. I can see how every choice and action affects these little ones. I have lived it from my older adult children.
I began having a giant pity party…which I loathe with a passion. I just couldn’t get out of it. I couldn’t figure out what was causing my deterioration. I could not talk myself into moving past it. I could barely even verbalize it. I continued showing up as happy, loving and supportive. I continued to spread love and inspiration on a daily basis but inside I was miserable. I was not me. I was someone I no longer recognized.
I had to stop. I had to breathe and stop pretending that I was “fine” when I wasn’t. And, I had to stop bulldozing myself into feeling better. I was actually contradicting the law of attraction because I was focusing on the lack of everything. And to me…this is unacceptable.
How could I cheerlead the world when my sadness was consuming me? I am really good at hiding shit when I don’t want to deal with pain. It’s my default programming.
But I went with it. I entered the dark night of the soul with a vengeance. In all Aries-woman fashion I gave it my all. Not a healthy suggestion for anyone (I promise it’s not for sissies). I wanted no help. I demanded seclusion. I expected the world to just know this, accept it, and conform to it.
I am grateful for the love and support around me. I don’t know how my seclusion has affected those in my small circle. And to be honest, I just couldn’t deal with those extra emotional concerns. Luckily I have some incredible friends who honored my wishes. They listened to the silence and the in-between aches. They knew my soul needed to just be.
I started a new job which is physically demanding while putting on hold my dreams of working for myself being an Intuitive Life Coach and Story Tender. I have a new schedule which has taken adjustments. Relationships around me began to crumble because of my lack of time and attention. And, there have been other components that added to the sadness. Many other revelations that I’ve avoided for decades. I began to notice how I allowed disrespect in many areas of my life. This was not really new but I had become tolerant to it. The truth is that what we resist does persist. No way around it but through it.
I was spending too much time apologizing to others for not being available which then angered me for having to use my little reserved energy in reassuring others. It began to take its toll on me. It was a lot!
I also felt ashamed and guilty. I couldn’t deal with the complexities of being “selfish” with my me-time. I couldn’t understand why I was living Groundhog Day every single day. What was I manifesting by my emotions? What was I putting out there energetically? So I began to question the universe about everything, but I refused to wait for answers. Once again, all in Aries style!
I learned something invaluable: I had to make my world tiny and take care of every single need that required my attention. I needed to take care of me for once. And every time I would venture to help someone I would get sick. My body felt physically ill by the extra output. This has been new territory of exploration. I had to learn to be compassionate with myself first and foremost. I had to learn to give to myself in the same loving manner I give to others.
Things began to unravel in ways that had gone unnoticed beforehand. I began to see. Really witnessing what needed addressing and changes in my life. The outside distractions weren’t there to filter these events and situations.
I began to understand that I am a wizard at avoiding hard experiences. I began to accept I needed to address old traumas. I started to take things apart and re-examine them like a forensic psychologist. I dove into my psyche during lunch hours. I began to see things differently. I don’t think I’ve ever done such deep work with myself (by myself). Who wants to have to address stinky old crap? I tend to move forward and not dwell back there. I took calculated analysis of the how’s and why’s while turning them into powerful lessons. The deeper I walked into the dark forest the harder it was to turn around and find the exit…so I kept going….
Hardly sleeping. Barely eating. Not much writing (which is therapy for me). I just decided to put on a costume of joy for the 8 hours at work and then take it off when I was home. It required intense energy and concentration. It has been quite the existential adventure. I’ve walked with faith holding on to a thread of hope…that I could muster through the muck. I wanted to know where God had been through all of it.
(He was always there. The Divine is mysterious but we must take time to listen).
This is the epitome of self-care. If you must recluse do it without explanations. Our society has programmed us to be at everyone’s beg and call. Technology makes it so. We feel guilty for not answering the calls, emails, and messages. We underestimate our desires for aloneness and healing. The truth is that we don’t owe anyone anything. We are responsible for our emotions alone. I cannot help anyone else when I’m barely making it throughout my day. And yes, we have folks who count on us. Those need to be taken into account but the rest of the world can wait a bit. You need to take care of you. You need to put the oxygen mask on first in order to help those next you.
I can only lead myself in and out of the journey. I can share with you my stories, but I cannot tell you what you should do. You, alone, get to decide how you heal from hurt and traumas. You get to put on your armor and figure out when it’s time to fight the demons from the past.
Self-care is self-love. I felt it was not so much a need as much as a survival necessity. There were moments I would check out emotionally and my spiritual body would begin to slowly realign. I recognized that depression was definitely trying to teach me something about me. It was getting my attention and I was going to listen.
It’s been a powerful few months. Pretending was a facade I could no longer continue. Weeks off social media helped me focus on so many things. The moment I began to deal with years of denial and loss I began to take on a new outlook. I began to write letters to the universe for clarity and forgiveness. I began to see my way out of the thick and dark wilderness. I began to stop questioning my purpose and find the depth of passion for living.
Because there is purpose. There is magic. There is light. There is love. There is connection. There are so many reasons to live for on a daily basis.
May your real life be as wonderful as the one you live on social media because you deserve happiness. Vulnerability is not weakness. It’s actual authenticity. Speaking your truth to those around you is imperative. You deserve to be the best version of yourself for yourself and not just for the world to witness. You deserve to be raw and unapologetic for all that you feel.
I love you. Thank you for sticking around here. I am slowly returning but without the tolerance for fake facades. This is me unapologetic. To pretend to be anything else is total bullshit. I promise to always be as real as I can be without static. I promise to keep showing up and provide a spec of light on a daily basis through this form of gathering.
Now you…get out there and shine. Let’s be lotus flowers emerging from the depth of muck and darkness into a new dawn.