I have been striving to live a perfect life for a very long time. While I am only 36 years old, I feel much older at times because of the weight that this need for perfection has been on my shoulders and heart.
Over the last few weeks I have felt angry. I have felt angry at myself for pushing down my power and my strength, all in the name of living this falsely perfect life that had no need or want for power or strength. I defined “falsely perfect” as the need to always be nice, to be able to say that “yes, things are great,” whenever asked, to not ever get mad or be “mean, and to have things so perfectly organized and arranged so that I could feel good. What I have started to see is how exhausting this way of living has been for me, as well as limiting and frustrating!
I was lying in bed this morning and I felt myself lifting up inside, like I was being lifted to a higher level of awareness and freedom and potential. A few hours later, I was seething mad, like I wanted to yell and scream and break things, so when I lay down to rest and breathe, I said, “I surrender this false and limiting way of living. I surrender the belief that only certain ways of existing are perfect. I surrender the inner critic and judge.” I was also feeling what it felt like as I was saying those things, so I was using my feelings as guide about what to do. It was amazing because it was like all the anger I have felt about forcing myself to live in this falsely perfect was guiding me to free myself. It was like that part of me rose up and helped me to say, “ENOUGH,” and that gave me the knowledge and strength to free myself from this pretend prison and to welcome back all parts of me.
I saw myself smashing down those prison walls and I felt rising, falling and melting within me, almost like the parts of me that I was surrendering (and the prison walls) were being absorbed, pulled into my heart, bounced around, healed and released to be free.
Ahhhh, deep breath : )
Here I am, an hour after crashing down my prison walls and I felt the need to write about it. I feel like I have all of this energy within me and it still wants to crash through life and push things out of the way, because it’s been buried down deep within me for so long. I am so interested and keen to get to know these parts of myself, and get to know their passions and interests and desires! I feel like I unknowingly buried my strength and power in an attempt to live a “good girl” kind of life, and now all I care about is living authentically and crashing down all the walls of falsehood that exist within me and around me. I know I won’t physically crash things down, but I think that me and my newfound power and strength will become good friends and that I will have much renewed energy in the coming days, weeks and months as this change settles within me. I am very excited to see what happens in my life as I meet each new day and each breath with a more integrated and united me.
May we all be blessed with the clarity to see where we have been unknowingly limiting ourselves and with the courage to break down those walls!
What is loneliness but a word? A word we give so much of ourselves to….
What if we are really only lonely for ourselves?
What is important to you? What makes you feel happy, uncomfortable, angry and sad?
By asking ourselves these questions and any number of deep questions, we get to know ourselves and we stop looking for answers in society, in a role we have or play, in a job, an income, from our conditioning, from others, from our so-called social status or even our Facebook status.
Is it possible to get our own attention? Is it possible that everything other than our deepest selves are distracting us, almost like a gift, so that we can learn to go to our own “store” within, to explore, look for “deals” and find out our real status?
That is the gift in all of the busyness of our North American society and what it values; the distractions can be so numerous that we can have no choice but to find shelter within, only to discover a whole world of magnificence that has been quietly waiting for us. It’s called You, it’s called Me, it’s called Us.
If we are with ourselves and we spend time tending the gardens of our own hearts, bodies, minds and spirits then what is loneliness but a word…because ultimately wherever we each go, we are there. Maybe, individually and collectively, we can learn for each of us to be all we each need…to be enough…to be the answer and companion we have been seeking all along.
May all loneliness be lifted up to Heaven to be healed, resolved and transformed, lovingly and gently, for the well-being of all hearts.
It has been nearly two years since I wrote on this blog. I was (and still am) undergoing huge changes in my life and I needed a break from putting my thoughts out for others to read. It was an intensely beautiful time of sharing my thoughts with myself, and starting to feel and know myself from a place of more kindness, instead of always wanting to get to the next healing and next place inside that was broken.
Today is June 24, 2016 and it feels like a remarkable day, like a day for a new beginning, once that has already started, and possibly started way before I was born. Today, I listened to my heart, that so sweetly and preciously encouraged me to contact my colleagues to see if I could start teaching yoga and breathing and relaxation sessions at work. I have done similar activities in the past, but this step forward was different. I felt it rise up from within me, with no regard for judgement from others or fear about what others might think of me. It was like a deep power rose up from within me, a passionate power that was ready to shine and share its gifts with the world. It was an honour to feel that strength and passion and to fully connect with it and allow it to guide me. I recently met a part of me that has been shut off from my awareness for what feels like hundreds of years. It is a part of me that is passionate, vulnerable and willing to be open and fearless. I wasn’t able to recognize it at all at first, but it spoke to me urgently, asking me to pay attention, to nurture it, to acknowledge it, to welcome it back home into my heart. I figured that out this past Tuesday and there has been a growing opening within me, where that passion and freedom is taking root and is helping me spread my wings. It is both awe inspiring and slightly scary, because it has no regard for limitations, fears, or anything that has held me back before. It is also humbling, because I feel that the timing is so beautiful and that life is holding me so tenderly and preciously so that I can accept the amazing gifts of passion and courage that have been locked away within me, waiting for this very time in my life.
May you know it is safe for you to shine too, just as I am allowing that safety to envelop me during this highly transformational time. Many blessings of peace, love, courage and faith to you.
The other day I looked out the window and I saw a group of birds all flying together. They were graceful, they were beautiful and they were free! They were silent, they weren’t bumping into each other and they flew together seemingly without any effort. I remember reading quite a few years ago that scientists have been trying to understand how fish swim in schools and how there are swarms of insects that swirl and dance together. They were hoping to learn about how they do that so that humans could benefit. I remember thinking that it would be cool to understand that.
As I looked out of my window the other day, I finally understood it. I understood how they fly together, how they swim together, and how they dance and move together with grace and ease without talking. I am sure there are others who already have this figured out, but it was an exciting moment for me! What I realized and deeply understood is that we are all the same, we are all one, we are all consciousness (awareness), even rocks, trees, insects, birds, reptiles and other mammals. We are all the same. I’ve read it before from Eckhart Tolle in the Power of Now and from his Weekly Present Moment Reminders, such as this one:
“When you are present you can sense the spirit, the one consciousness in every creature and love it as yourself.”
The healer/teacher that I see regularly has also been teaching me that we are all particles of consciousness and that our particles dance all around us and through and with other people, because we truly are one. It seemed absurd at first, but as I continue to grow and my level of consciousness increases, more and more about consciousness and spirituality makes sense, and I’m sure I will continue to understand it at an even deeper level. I was provided with a few opportunities lately to understand how consciousness works, which is what lead me to finally get it when I saw the birds flying.
Here are some examples:
I was in the shower and I suddenly thought, “Oh, I never did order that Arbonne product from my friend Dionne, maybe I should do that. Hmm, maybe I should host an Arbonne party, ya, maybe I’ll contact her.” The next day, I get a call from Dionne asking me if I could host an Arbonne party.
I was also in the shower and I thought to myself, “Hmmm, maybe I should buy some Fly Like A Butterfly books from Shakta (who is the founder of Radiant Child Yoga, where I did the first part of my training). Hmm, I wonder if that would be worth it for me?” And then I left it at that. A day later, I got an email from Radiant Child Yoga and they were offering wholesale discounts on their yoga materials to support yoga teachers.
I was walking in the woods with my daughter on a chilly day in February. At one point along our walk, I got apprehensive and I had this huge feeling that we should turn around. I stopped, asked my daughter if she needed to go home and she didn’t, so I breathed a bit, looked around and felt like I wanted to continue walking. I kept feeling like my husband’s grandmother was worried about us. I finally decided to go back since we were close to the end of the nature trail and I told my daughter that I was feeling like grandma was worrying about us, and I think I broke energy with grandma. I can’t quite remember the details. We got back to grandma’s house and I asked my husband if grandma had been worried and he said that they were chatting about how they had seen coyotes in the woods a few days earlier and our grandparents were very worried about us being out. I didn’t even have to be in the house or close by to feel those fears instantly!
These recent experiences combined to help me to see just how linked we are as people, just as the birds and fish are! It gave me hope that humanity will eventually learn to use that connectedness so that we can dance together like the birds in the sky, instead of grinding up against each other spreading fear and negativity.
I’m a relatively new mom all things considered. My daughter is about to turn 4, but I feel like I’ve learned a life’s worth of lessons with her so far. Her presence has shown me so many limiting ways of being that I was operating from. Now that I’ve plunged myself into this journey of self-awareness and awakening to the truth of who I am, I’m seeing more and more how many of those limiting behaviors I still have and I’m seeing more how others are similarly trapped (or more or less so, depending on where they are).
Early on, when Zara was less than 1, I often found myself complaining about her lack of sleep, her lack of doing what I wanted, when I wanted. It was all around me too, all of us young mothers, complaining to one another, and there were many books out there to support the complaints, such as “how to get your baby to sleep,” “how to whisper to your baby the way this person does,” and the list is endless. I could have stood at the parenting section for hours and not really known where to start. It kind of felt like I was being given a chance to start over. Instead of carrying my life forward from my old ways of being and my old job, where we would work and then complain, work and then complain, I was given the most precious gift of all, a beautiful baby girl with a wise soul, deep eyes and an open heart, who showed me with her presence and her reactions to my behavior and my unconscious energetic rebukes, what I was really doing. She was giving me a chance to try again, to see if there really was another way to operate, instead of from defense, blame, victimhood and what about me-hood, she was showing me what my actions were doing to her and she was looking at me with those wise eyes, almost as if to say, “I know you can do this, really I do.”
I’ve since come a long way. In fact, sometimes I’m not even sure I’m the same person who was angry at our little precious one (9 months old is one time I remember) for not going to sleep, and then deciding that if she wasn’t going to go to sleep, then I would turn on the TV and just watch it. I’ve been learning how to forgive myself lately and whenever those memories of my unconscious behaviors come up and I start to blame myself and feel guilty, I’m learning to be kind to myself and stop, close my eyes and put my hands on my heart and say, “I forgive myself,” out loud. It feels really good. I really didn’t know any better, I really was doing the best I could have, and sometimes when I forgive myself audibly like that, I get goose bumps and I know that it’s true, that I’ve really forgiven myself and I’ve chosen self-love over self-beating-up like I used to.
I offer some suggestions to those who are/were like me, who are/were trapped in unconscious patterns of relating to the world and to their children, so that they may see that there are options and alternatives instead of just following along. I offer them from my heart, from my experience, because I think we all want to do the best for our children and we often hate it when we hear those harsh words come out of our mouths or feel ourselves pulling away from our beauties, or even exploding at them. We’ve all done it and I feel like we can all unite together in this, instead of hiding in shame and learn from one another and most importantly, learn from our children. We all remember being the child who was yelled at, who was shamed, who was hit or threatened with abuse, we all remember those feelings, let’s assist one another in stopping the unconscious patterns and let’s start honoring ourselves and our children.
Some things that have helped me:
Notice how you talk to yourself when you are around your children. Is there a constant stream of “you little brat, I’m going to make you do this, how could you do this to me, we only have 5 minutes left, what do you mean you have to pee, you just threw your food on the floor, are you (insert swear word here) kidding me?” From my experience and from reading Eckhart Tolle’s books, all we have to do is notice it to pull out of it. Sometimes I’ve noticed it so strongly and I have to completely stop what I am doing and lie down and breathe, or I may do something absolutely silly (which was not like me early on) and run around the house 3 times (I learned that from the book “Adventures in Gentle Discipline”) or sing a song. I do my best not to give up my power to the thoughts in my head, which are not me in the first place.
Notice yourself criticizing your children, either directly or behind their backs (especially when they are in hearing range, actually, it’s best to avoid it completely, they’ll sense it anyway). Children hear and notice everything. If you are supportive in front of them and then turn around and roll your eyes or slump over in exhaustion so your friends can see (I’ve seen this), they will feel it and notice it. We are not masters of deception as parents, children are masters of detection, I especially remember this from my childhood. Ask yourself why you feel like you need to complain about your child, what purpose does it serve? Does it help people to like you, does it help you to feel like you fit in that way? I wonder if all parents like to hear others complain about their children and what would happen if one of us parents started saying, “actually it really bothers me to hear you criticize your child, please don’t share those negative comments with me. I will always support you in finding constructive ways to deal with your situation, but no criticism please.” I think I may give it a try. Actually, I’ve already done it and it’s worked!
Think about the things you were told as a child: you are fat, you are so useless, you are so stupid, you can’t do anything, you’ve dropped that again, what’s wrong with you, I hate it when you do that to me, etc. It won’t take long to think about them, because they are stored inside us, in our subconscious minds, like a little program we learned as children, waiting to play over and over again. Consider what program you want running in your child and speak from there. For more information about children and their subconscious minds and the beliefs about the self that get stored there, you can check out Bruce Lipton’s, “the Biology of Belief.” That book was such an intense wake up call for me. Children even have different types of brain waves until they are 6, and that is so they can soak up as much about the world as possible, including beliefs about the self, and they get those mainly from their parents. Consider what types of things you say to your child!
If your child is always resisting what you are saying, consider why. From an early age (6 weeks) we followed “diaper free baby”, so that meant we would assist our daughter to pee in a potty, toilet or sink, instead of in her diapers. It meant that we were in tune with her, noticing her body movements as signals for when she had to go, etc. It was a really cool process and I’m glad we did it, we didn’t have to wash as many diapers and it meant we didn’t really have to potty train our daughter because she understood what her body needed to do and into where, from a very early age. I remember putting her on the potty at certain points, maybe when she was 8 months and she would stand up and look at herself in the mirror (I had my hands under her arm pits and the potty was on the counter, so you can picture it!) and she would sing and bounce and marvel at herself. I felt myself getting so frustrated that she wouldn’t do what I wanted. I had such strong memories of my father being frustrated at me like that and I could feel the frustration in my entire body. I tried to “get” her to go, but of course it didn’t work. None of us like to be forced!! I read “Everyday Blessings: The Inner Work of Mindful Parenting” and my life and parenting turned right around. I was mindful and aware of when I was forcing and I was able to pull back and centre myself and sure enough, there was less force, less control and less battles because I had adjusted how I was approaching my parenting.
Instead of blame and anger, consider stopping, breathing, getting some fresh air and realizing and knowing that your child is not out to get you, but is there to highlight that which you haven’t wanted to see for a long time:) Consider thanking your child and moving on from a fresh place. I’ve had a lot of help in my “moving on” and “letting go” because in my experience of life, it has never been as easy as just saying it and it being done. I’ve learned about mindful parenting, I’ve learned about gentle discipline, unconditional parenting, making time for myself (still working on that one), allowing myself to say no and meaning it and it being okay, and I’ve also learned about healing and letting go with an energy coach/healer/guide that I see quite regularly, and through techniques my husband has learned on his own path of reclaiming his life (reconnective healing and heartmath, http://www.healandevolve.ca). I’ve also learned that yoga, nature walks with my family and friends and dancing are very therapeutic and enjoyable for me.
I think there are traps in parenthood and I think they are there for a wonderful reason, just as our children chose us for a wonderful reason, to help us see the truth of who we are and so that we may honor and love them and allow them to flourish and shine the way they intended when they came to this beautiful planet.
I think we’ve all heard, “it happened for a reason,” about an experience that we are going through or have gone through. Sometimes that statement can be so obviously true, or super infuriating if the experience is what we may deem as horrible and painful, and it may lead us to wonder what we have done to “deserve it.”
The guide that I’ve been going to see for nearly two years now to clear out all the old energies, karma, emotions and memories, has been repeating several truths to me and I’m starting to get that our experiences can teach us and show us that which we haven’t wanted to see, if we can allow it and be willing to look deeper.
Last week, I got off the bed in our spare room, stepped onto the floor and a sharp, stabbing pain filled my foot! I screamed out really loudly and I was scared about what could have caused it. I felt the panic rising in my chest and I was nervous. I gently took my sock off and there was a small piece of wood sticking out of it. I’ve had splinters before, but this seemed more like a shard of wood or something and it frightened me even more. My husband wasn’t home and I realized I was going to have to deal with it myself, which I rarely have done in my life. My Dad was always my splinter remover and that job just fell to my husband since he was good at it. I never questioned it, but just said to myself, “ya, I must go to a man to get my splinter removed.” Ha, I’m laughing as I type this because that thought was so true.
I hopped over to the bathroom to get some tweezers and I was really starting to feel like a victim by the time I got there. Despite all the tools I have learned for connecting to myself, breathing deeply, acknowledging the fear and feeling it, I was in panic mode and no tool thoughts were able to enter through the panic I was feeling. I grabbed the tweezers and yanked it out. It was still really throbbing and painful and I lay on the bed and tried to come deeper into my body and to send some love to where the pain was. It was only after the piece of wood was out that I was able to start using some tools, but the panic had taken over and it was slower going than if I had connected to myself right away. That’s okay, it was all part of what I was meant to learn and see.
I limped a fair bit on and off for nearly a week, so I figured that there must be another piece of wood in my foot, which kind of kept me in a slight fear mode for that entire week. Finally, the day came when I walked and the pain was so excruciating that I knew that there must be more wood in there and that my body had been working so hard to push it closer to the surface for me. I had probed around with the tweezers when I initially took it out but I hadn’t been able to see anything. So, after feeling that pain at the end of the week, I knew that I would have to break through the skin (yikes!) and pull out the beast!
Robbin (my husband) and I were armed with tweezers, nail clippers and needles to try to get it out, and I was squirming and too scared to let Robbin try to take it out. I tried myself and I felt a lot of “this is so hard, this is going to hurt, I can’t do this,” thoughts and energies moving through my body, so I stopped and breathed and connected to myself. I thought then that I could let Robbin do it, but it was like I just couldn’t, so I decided to try it myself again. It got a little easier and less scary, and then I stopped and realized that the reason why this happened to me was so that I could take back my power from splinters and from my body being hurt and hoping/asking that others take care of me. I mentioned that to Robbin and I felt much lighter inside. I was able to really dig out the thick skin (yikes, but this time it was much less of a yikes) and then I was able to grab it. I breathed, got the tweezers ready and I pulled it out. It was sooooo long and thick, it was crazy! It was an inch long and a millimetre thick at one end and likely a millimetre and a half at the other end. I exclaimed out loud about it and then I didn’t want to look at it! Robbin encouraged me to, to look at it, appreciate what my body had gone through, and what a personal victory I had just achieved in its removal. I looked at it from that perspective and marvelled at it and I felt so free, so happy, so empowered! It was the biggest splinter I’d ever seen and I was able to see the lesson it had for me and I was able to free myself from the grip of “help me, I don’t know what to do, I can’t do this by myself.” Hooray!
I took out the garbage that night and it was really cold and refreshing and I got to the end of the driveway and I looked around and then I was overwhelmingly compelled to run up and down the driveway pumping my arms in the air and yelling, “I did it, yes I did it!” Tee hee, I don’t think anyone saw me, but if they had, they would have joined me I’m sure!
I hope to keep getting the secret messages that my life’s experiences have to share with me!