The Trauma of Birth

Birth is messy.

Blood, sweat, tears… pain, until one final push and suddenly your world is forever altered. There is no turning back… only the unsure forward march, each step gaining traction in the world.

Birth is the same for everything in nature, whether we are talking childbirth, a personal rebirth or the creation of a more balanced world. There is always pain, blood, sweat, tears.

As I watch what’s happening in the world I see the messy, ferocity that nature is bestowing upon us. The beauty of the brutal swiftness that occurs when things shift too far off balance. The realization that what looks messy is actually perfect in its design and execution. I see the painful contractions that push us into new ways of thinking and of being. New ways that are really just a step back to our more instinctual, in tune selves.

With each swell of destruction, each tornado, earthquake, viral epidemic, I watch in awe and feel every particle of fear and hope and everything in between, that come with each crash. Each soul that is intimately effected is connected to the next and the next at its core of the oneness that we are. Each wave comes closer and faster until we learn to flow with them, to adjust ourselves so that we can learn from these lessons and come to shore stronger.

We are being asked to connect. Connect back to nature, back to our innate intelligence, back to our hearts.

As I sit on my cold bathroom floor, bundled in a towel, tears on my face, I know, very clearly that I am being drawn back to my own connection. One that has been so buried for so many years that each feeling of inspiration, each whisper of intuition feels like an elusive gift wrapped in gold and dissolvable the second it comes into my awareness. I grasp on to these moments, not daring to believe that this is me. This is love. And it is available to me always if I just choose to believe in what I am. The harder I clench the faster they dissolve until finally with surrender they settle like rays of sun on naked skin.

I have had a lot of time on my hands. Time to be quiet. To be reflective. To evaluate the steps that brought me to where I am. To create the next steps. To choose to live. To become who I am meant to be. To appreciate my journey and know that there is no destination and that is the beauty in living. I know that whatever lies ahead is not something I can comprehend because I have never dared to live a life freely and openly, me.

Rebirth is messy.

And as nature is forcing us all to take a minute to do a personal inventory and realign our lives with our values, I am right there with her, amidst the agony, the fear, the despair, allowing myself to shift and contract, to open to myself, to be reborn.

I would encourage all of you to do the same. Look inside and see where your connection to your power has been fractured. Where it has been shoved into boxes of societal and familial expectation. Where your dreams lie dormant waiting for a breath of courage and grit to bring them to the surface. Nature is playing in her rebirth and she is inviting you to do the same. ❤ ❤

The Value of Discomfort

I was in my coaching program class today and the instructor, who is someone whose work I value, said something that made me pause, and it is something that many a personal development influencer will say. He said we should ALWAYS strive to live at a high frequency. That we should not allow ourselves lower frequency emotions and this is the way to create an attracting state.

I understand the sentiment. However, I think there is great value in having “negative” emotions or lower frequency ones. If we didn’t have them 1. we would not be able to recognize, appreciate or even understand what “higher”frequency was because there would be no contrast (duality) and 2. most of us need that discomfort to move through the world. It is in that discomfort that we seek the elevated living states (perspectives and duality).

I am really tired of being told I just need to choose to be happy and all my problems will be solved. This fucked me up for a long time because any time I would have a “bad” emotion (anger, jealousy fear, panic, worry) I would go okay but be happy, plaster a smile on my face and fail miserably. It was like trying to keep the lid on a pressure cooker. Sometimes you have to let some god damn steam out.

We have these emotions for a reason! They have just as much value as the positive ones, more when we are talking about self transformation. It is the discomfort that inspires us into action, inspires us to change. No, we are not meant to live in these states, and that is when we get into trouble, but these feelings have tremendous value.

I have also heard these emotions described as the “pseudo” self among the therapy circles and fuck that language seems so detrimental to me. To say that feeling anger is your “false” self, no! My anger is my anger. It drives me to create, to make changes, to move. It is as much a part of me as my “solid” self. There isn’t a fake and a real self. There is only the frequency that you are emitting now and the elevated (or lower) frequency that you are transforming too. But it is all, gloriously, deeply, ME.

Can you imagine if there was no fear, no worry, no jealousy, no hate in this world? I think that not having those would mean we were unable to fully appreciate the good times. I think it would get boring. We can use the example of this virus. I think that most of us were living with a base frequency that had become used to or complacent to the noise in the world, the wars, the death, the hostility. Now that we have this silent assailant who is not picky about age, gender, race or religion and suddenly we are seeing our collective humanity again, and we are coming together as PEOPLE. This would not have happened without this damn virus spreading across the globe. Without the perspective of just how shitty and scary this is, we would not be enjoying time with family and friends or singing with neighbors on balconies or in hospital corridors (with the appropriate 6 feet of distance of course :)). Instead, we would have continued as we were. While the collective is scared and worried and panicked, there is also an elevation happening, a deepening of the love and joy and pleasure that we are experiencing in this time.

The real trick in all of this is knowing what to do with discomfort and honestly, that is something I am still figuring out.

One of the things I do though is use duality and perspective shifts to help me figure out what I need. For example: I’m having a lot of anxiety going out to do my job right now as I feel others are not taking this viral threat as serious as I am. Then I ask, “why am I having that anxiety” and realize it is because I have been sick so I feel more vulnerable than I normally would. Then I have something to work with. I could go around being pissed off and wanting people to change their own behavior OR I can recognize what is happening and figure out what I can do to fix it. I bought masks, I increased my cleaning protocols. Anxiety, decreased.

This can be done with anything really. I am sad about my ex. Why am I sad? Because I feel alone. What can I do to feel less alone? Call some friends, go on a walk and meet some neighbors etc.

I get it, things don’t always feel that cut and dry for me either. But by breaking down our emotions in this way we are able to recognize steps and take them. Each step geared towards moving away from the discomfort and towards an elevated state.

And let me go off on a tangent for a second to say this is what is so fucked about so much of personal development. It isn’t pretty to tell you it takes some fucking work and balls of steel to move through this stuff. It takes grit and determination and some days you are going to lose the battle. I have been around and heard so many times, just be happy and for me it makes me feel like my other feelings aren’t valid. There is no faster way to shut down a conversation with someone in the thick of things than to tell them “hey it isn’t all bad, I know you have a gun in your mouth, but look at that sunshine, just be happy!” No. No. NO. In those moments we have to help people to cultivate an iota of space so that they can find the strength to take another breath, another step. This is done by validating their feelings and seeing them completely and being able to sit with them as they walk through fire.

You can’t have good without bad, love without hate, cold without warm. We need the lower frequencies as much as we need the higher. We need the darkness to be able to see the light. It’s all about how we use them that creates a platform for transformation and the joy that is the human experience. ❤ ❤

Image by PublicDomainPictures from Pixabay

Day 84: Staying the Course

With all of the current upheaval it’s really easy to become complacent in your goals and to stop moving forward.

This time, more than ever, is the time to pause and refocus your intentions. It’s time to remind yourself what you want from the world, what you need to get there and what action steps you can be taking to propel yourself closer to your goal.

Being in quarantine is a funny thing. There is all this time do be productive, but with so much anxiety and heaviness and fear in the world it is super easy to just sink into that and do nothing but sit and binge watch Netflix.

I’m having to remind myself of this. Especially today. I got tested for Corona yesterday and am anxiously waiting for results while also getting more and more sick. Fun times. I am doing all the self care things but at some point today I caught myself wondering how bad this was going to get and how shitty I was going to feel. I had a proper 2-3 minutes of wandering down that rabbit hole. Then I thought, fuck it. This is nature doing it’s job. It’s contributing to herd health and an overall boost in immunity so whatever is going to happen is going to happen. I am not going to let it dictate my life any more than it has to.

I reminded myself why I was doing this blog and then I started writing.

That’s the thing about taking steps, you can sit around all day and think about taking them, but unless you actually DO the thing there is no forward movement.

So here I am, doing it, offering you encouragement to do the same. Don’t let what’s going on in the world interrupt your goals and dreams and aspirations. This is a bump in the road that we will all make it through together. ❤ ❤

Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay

Day 77: Accepting Feedback

I had an experience today with an instructor for my coaching program. It wasn’t a pleasant interaction but because she was of a “higher” status with respect to the situation that we were in, I let her feedback overwhelm me a little bit.

I recognize that I am in a stage of my own growth where I need some cheer leading from people. I need encouragement and I need to listen to those that I know truly have my back, and no one else. I am like a fledgling bird trying to figure out how to fly.

The situation this morning raised the volume on my inner critic. The one I have just recently begun to quiet. The dialogue was not pretty. It came in hard and fast and brutal. You aren’t meant to be a coach, you have nothing to offer.

All because she had given me some constructive criticism that was not delivered in a manner that was useful to what I needed at the time.

The really cool thing though is that I am able to recognize it isn’t what I needed.

I was also able to recognize where I needed to work on some boundaries and be firm in who I am. I took a look at that, who I am, and how I want to show up and sat with that for a bit.

I don’t even remember what she said that set me off. The words don’t even really matter.

I decided that her feedback wasn’t that useful to me because I do not want to show up for my clients like she shows up for hers. There is no anger in it, it is from a place of love and curiosity for who she is and the people that she treats.

It was a good reminder that people will give feedback and criticism based on their own experience. One piece of criticism can outweigh a hundred pieces of praise. Words from a complete stranger can cause internal questioning so deep it can ruin the day. But. We decide how much power we place on those words. We can decide if that feedback is from someone that we trust and admire who show up in a way that we want to emulate. If the answer is no then let the words go. Look for the other things that came from the interaction, the insights and strengths and focus on those.

What I did get from the experience was a lot of growth on my end. I was able to identify an area in my personality where if I do not figure out how to manage and shift it a little better it will end up being an energy drain for me and could negatively effect my clients. I was also able to sit in my own truth and decide what was useful for me and what wasn’t, something that I would not have been able to do a year ago. I was able to accept her world view and more importantly, mine, and make it okay to have had that experience. I was also able to quiet the inner critic and lovingly disagree and come up with all of the reasons that I do belong in the coaching industry.

These shifts are not small. They may seen common sense to some, but for me it is huge. I came from a place, just a year or so ago, where I was so confused about what was me, what was the outside world, where my voice was and if it was even okay to listen to it. This is still something that I sometimes need to decipher.

It is a reminder that transformation is possible. That once steps are taken there is no going back and that one only has to be brave enough to keep moving forward.

I am scared as hell to keep going. I have no idea what happiness or joy or living in those emotions feels like, but I am getting more glimpses every day. Sometimes I want to stop. To stay where I am at and accept that the changes I have made, which have improved my life a little bit, are enough because I have pulled myself out of the deepest depths of pain. I am still in the cave though, it’s still dark here and I am still walking blindly, but for the first time in my life there is a small circle of light starting to appear, a beacon that I can finally see as a guidepost.

If I can share nothing else of my journey it is this, to keep going. I say it as much for myself as anyone else reading it. Change is small at first, but mountains are built on grains of sand and right now I have gathered enough to see the foundation and there is nothing more motivating than that.

Keep going. You are more than enough and more than worthy to have everything you want in this life. And so am I. ❤ ❤

Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay

Day 76: Rewriting Your Story

I used to think that life was just… how it was. I came from a shitty childhood, life was hard and that was just how it was going to be.

I would see these people and even come across some of them intimately, that just seemed to have it all together. Good things kept happening for them and well, they were just lucky.

I used to think that I was fated to what my life was, that some being bigger than myself had decided I should have a shitty life and that was that. That was the hand I was dealt. I used to really judge and quite frankly, kind of hate those people that just had it all together.

I used to attract people that felt the same and we would sit and lament about how shit our lives were.

My life hasn’t made a complete 180… yet. It has taken a lot of really conscious effort and a lot of self awareness but more and more these days I am feeling things shift. I am seeing progress and results in a way that is tangible and real. I am finding more and more people who are forward focused and I no longer attract the people willing or wanting to sit in shit. The friends I do have who are still here and were my bitching buddies are also working on bettering themselves so we are journeying together and that feels really good. And I am starting to attract some really awesome people in my life. People who have gone through the same darkness that I have and who have come out the other side and transformed their lives. These people serve as guides, mentors and valued friends. When I look around now I can see all of that. Even if I am having a down day, I can see the progress and I can find the good, the strengths, and I can make praise a mindful, daily practice.

Somewhere along the line I accepted that I am writing my story. My decisions have shaped my current reality and I am the only one who can change it. That is such an empowering thought.

Rewriting my story has been… by all accounts…. quite a long process. And I don’t really think there is ever a “being done” with it. I think that people who have been wired to live in fear and darkness find solace there and have to do a daily rewriting, sometimes a minute by minute one but my experience is teaching me that it can become faster and faster and the fear tamed quicker with each successive progression. And it really helps to have friends that can help you see blind spots and steer you towards a better outlook.

Today I see change. I see progress. I feel love and hope and joy. I know these emotions come and go and that darkness will come back to me, but I am not worried about that. I read something that was along the lives of “if you can pull your head from the future, and your heart from the past you will know how to live in the present” and that is what I am doing today. I am being present, enjoying the happiness and just being me. Rewritten. ❤ ❤

Day 72: Self Awareness

Yesterday I wrote about holding space and I forgot to talk about the most important part, holding space for yourself.

There is great beauty in having someone in your life to do this for you. It is incredibly helpful. But the ability to hold space for yourself, to let your thoughts and emotions come without judging them, to accept that they are there and maybe they aren’t as nice as you’d like, is an act of self care that far outweighs any of the spa days and massages. It is truly an act of self compassion. When you sit with yourself, there are no barriers, no attempts to shield another person from the darkness or the light, it’s just you and in that way you can dig much deeper into yourself and your journey than you can with another person. This is not to say that personal growth should always be undertaken alone. We NEED other people to help us stay the course, to inspire us to keep going when the going gets tough, to cheer us on and call us out when we need it. Being able to do this for yourself….it’s not easy, but is one of the most rewarding things that a person can do.

When I started this blog I made a promise to myself that I would stay honest and authentic. So I’m going to dig into some dark stuff here. Maybe it will help someone, maybe it will help me to process.

I reached out to Mr. X this week. I don’t know how I feel about this actually. There is a small part of me that feels like I am failing womanhood by doing so, a much larger part of me just wants to hear some kindness and support from someone I love.

I am struggling really really hard to get through this situation with him. It’s all self induced really. The darker parts of me want him to know how much he has hurt me. The other part wants to shut completely off so no one can see that pain. There are parts of me that know some of the things he did and said weren’t really okay to me, but I let them go because I am really good empathizing with other people and accepting less than ideal behavior for fear of losing the relationship. When I try to talk stuff through with friends, even me just telling them I am going through a breakup of sorts (without all of the details), the automatic, immediate reaction from them is to tell me I need to cut off all contact. I need to go out and get wasted and numb the pain and move on with some other guy. They want to immediately demonize him and I don’t. Then, my friends start telling me things like I sound like a woman who is in love with an abuser. Some of the shit they come up with is absolutely ludicrous. I realize it is them dealing with their own pain and issues, so I don’t talk to them anymore about this. I am mostly alone processing. And this is where holding space and self awareness comes in.

The reasons I reached out aren’t totally conducive to my own self love but have helped me flush out some patterns that I realize now are from my childhood. One of the reasons I wanted to talk to him is because I love him, and I really miss him and I want a hug so god damn bad and to hear what is going on in his world. I know that those wants are lifting a scab that needs more time to heal, so maybe isn’t completely in our best interest. One of the other reasons is because there is a part of me that wants to string him up and use him as a punching bag, to dredge up all the shit he said that hurt me and launch into a verbal lashing that would make a sailor blush.

When this first came up there were so many emotions that came with it – righteousness, anger, pain, guilt, shame. I felt simultaneously that it was my place to want this and he should just take it, as well as feeling like a completely rubbish human being for even allowing that thought to cross my mind with reference to someone that I love. I have been judging that thought hard. I know where it comes from. I lived this experience my entire life. Every time anything was done to my mother to “hurt” her, even if it was a simple expression of self, she would lash out. I’m talking screaming and crying and trying to hit things. Feeling this, knowing this is in me and that I allowed it into a space where there once was so much love really weighed heavily on my heart. And then I realized, we haven’t talked yet. This is not the action that I have to choose. It is one option, but not the one I will feel the best about, and not one that supports me in being a better version of myself. So I stopped judging it, accepted it was there and allowed it to just be.

To set aside that anger almost feels like giving in. It feels like giving up on fighting for a relationship that I cherish so deeply. And this is where the internal battle ensues. I don’t know if it is this way for most people, but for me it is really intense. I have a massive amount of resistance to the thought of just letting go and accepting what has happened. Even though I know it will make me … and him feel better. And letting go would be an ultimate act of love, for both of us, but I’m just not there yet, and that’s okay too.

I was never one of those little girls that had BIG dreams. I never dreamed of being a vet actually. It was something that I thought would come naturally so I did it. I never dreamed of a wedding and kids or a big fancy house. My whole life, from as far back as I could remember, I have wanted one thing. One thing that lit me up, ignited my heart and kept me going in pursuit. I wanted to find an out of this world love connection with a man. That’s all. I have never settled for less and thus have been single pretty much my entire life. To find the feeling that I wanted in this amazing and beautiful human being who makes me heart light up, who induces butterflies in my chest, whose touch sends goosebumps down my body… and then to “lose” it…. feels …. empty and hollow and dreamless. I don’t know how else to describe it. When you have put all of your energy into searching for one thing and it doesn’t show up like you thought it would and you can’t actually access all of it, it’s a huge bitter pill to swallow.

So I find myself sifting through the ashes, wandering in the darkness, playing with all of the pieces and seeing what fits and what doesn’t and it is there I realize that my heart opened with him, so it is capable of opening, but that I need a lot. I need a lot of love. Not many people can provide that. And to expect that one person will be enough for all of that is too much for anyone to bear. It all comes back to me. Me being able to fill myself with love. Me seeing me for what I am and accepting it, embracing it and figuring out how to live in this world where I don’t feel like I have ever belonged. It is about finding a new dream so that there is some compulsion to stick around a while longer in this experience. I like puzzles so this is right up my alley. I have created my life as one 3-D, monochromatic, million piece puzzle to solve. And I am a hell of a creator.

As my mind wanders to all of the interactions we could possibly have, I know that the one thing I will not allow myself is to use him as a punching bag to sort through my own insecurities and fears. He deserves better than that and so do I.

Image by Mrdidg from Pixabay

One of the things that helps me with self awareness is clarifying my values. This is a new exercise for me so I am in the stage where it isn’t automatic quite yet. I struggle really really hard with is knowing what is MY voice. I understand Mr. X and how his brain and heart work so I can live in his perspective. I get where my friends are coming from, the ones who tell me to go out and party and just move on so I can live there too. Obviously, I can live in my own past which dictates situations like this call for a complete excision of the relationship from my life with never a look back. I am comfortable there too. Where I am not comfortable is the new paradigm of what I want to be, who I want to be, how I want to show up in the world. Since there are so many noises coming in I decided to make a values list to take all of the static out of the equation.

What are my top values? Authenticity, kindness and love. There are other ways I want to show up, but to simplify I am starting there.

Then I say okay, is getting pissed and verbally abusing someone you love in line with those values? No, obviously. Is it authentic? Yes, because that is what I feel, but it isn’t necessarily a truth. Is it kind? No, not at all. Is it born of love? No, it doesn’t express love for him, my words would not be born of love and it certainly won’t help me feel more love for myself. That is my voice. That is self- awareness.

Whenever someone says something to me with relation to this situation (and any others I am confused about) I run it through those filters, does that feel authentic to me, is it coming from a place of or expressing kindness and love? If yes then I may place it in my toolbox, if not I allow it to be there, know it is an expression of me and then let it be and give myself a huge proverbial pat on the back for winning another round, for feeding something better.

I also like to go back to what I wrote yesterday about people knowing what is best for them. I have to remind myself often of this. I know what is best for me. Not my friends, not Mr. X, me. Even if I choose a dark path, it is my choice. Doing something different for someone else will not create sustained change.

Some other self awarenesses that I am sitting with include: I am stubborn… like REALLY stubborn and I sometimes act out when I don’t get my way. The way I express my anger sometimes is very intense, with little to no space between my anger and lashing out. Sometimes when I am hurt I want other people to hurt too. I don’t trust words, only actions and it is still a really long road to gain my trust. In the wake of this situation I do not want to open my heart to anyone but me. Physical touch does not feel good to me with other people. I can walk away from most of the people in my life very VERY easily as I do not actually allow myself to connect with them. These are things that keep coming up, that I sit with, filter through and see how I can utilize them. Most of the time I just work on shifting perspectives to something more useful.

I am stubborn, but I am also very passionate about what I feel and when I come up against something that is a true “wrong” in this world I will fight for what is right. The intensity of my anger and fear and pain are the opposition to the intensity of my love which when opened and softened to people can create a space for a love that is huge and very filling and warm. I may want to hurt people when I am hurt, but I actively pursue other solutions. I still act in the kindest way that I can, and seek to see their perspective. My love is deep and not easily given and I have reasons not to trust people and that is okay, the ones who stick around for me earn my loyalty, respect and love. I am very very good at protecting myself and have created a space where I am safe. I don’t need to soften to everyone for them to receive some of the love I have to give, my body is my own and it does not need to be a tool for expression of love.

See, when I put it that way those traits are empowering and come from a place of alignment with my values.

Personal growth really is all about figuring out how you want to show up, becoming aware of existing thought patterns, finding different perspectives and interacting with them to build a new reality brick by brick. It isn’t a fast or fun process, but the new version brings with it a whole new life and a new playground to find your dreams, build your reality and flourish in the life you have been given. ❤ ❤

Top Image by PublicDomainPictures from Pixabay

Day 67: In Which We Find Reprieve

Some days are just good. In spite of the drudgery of emotional processing and grief and self-punishment there are some days the sun shines through the forest and one can’t help to be content.

I have to remind myself CONSTANTLY that it’s okay to be happy and sad in the same moment.

I started my coaching certification program and it’s a really really good group of people.

The further I dive into inner work, the harder I am finding it to be around people who aren’t doing some work. There are so many people in this world just planted in the status quo. This group is really cool, there are people from all walks of life and they are doing amazing things!

So many of them are coaching already, and the niche’s are really cool. There are subject from female hair loss to sexuality. I have no clue where I fit in yet but I am really honored to be a part of a really special group.

The conversation today was about language and asking questions. There is not a better topic for me to start my journey into coaching.

During the class our coach asked a few questions that made it clear to me that my inner dialogue STILL isn’t very positive. At first I was really disheartened. The same stories came up, I am not making progress, how can I be so dumb to think I could do this… and then I stopped. The lightbulb went on, this is what she meant. I don’t think of myself as a piece of shit anymore and I don’t entertain a lot of the stories I heard from my childhood, but I still don’t talk very positively to myself.

I know I have a lot to work on. And for the first time in a while, today I told myself it was okay.

I’m going to define my values. Work on listening for questions that people ask and how they can be reframed and I am going to reframe my own, with grace and patience for myself. ❤ ❤

Image by TeroVesalainen from Pixabay