The whole picture
Thoughts to ponder...
I began writing this back in May after I supported someone close through an incredibly powerful purge which felt to them like a break down, or a rock bottom but I knew with all of me it was a beautiful space of healing for this person.
It was one of the most natural and powerful things I have had the privilege of witnessing, but I could also sense the fear from their loved ones who stood close by because of how it looked, how it sounded, how foreign this healing pathway was and could be.
As I sometimes do, I begin writing a piece and pop it aside in trust that sometimes the contemplations are just for me, but having experienced the last month I have personally, I feel this topic was one of importance.
What do you naturally think of when it comes to a healing space, a healing pathway, a healing journey?
Sometimes, depending on the healing modality, a healing pathway may be subtle, gentle, nurturing, soothing, but sometimes, a healing space can be rough, it can be messy, you might even feel worse in the middle of it, it may come in the way of deep despair, it may bring with it the complexities of the root cause. It may unravel the layers of conditioning you have put in place (not necessarily knowingly) that allowed you to make sense of something, hold yourself together, give meaning or reason to something, to forget something, to survive, to feel loved, to ensure you would never be hurt again, the list goes on.
We do what we need to in order to stay upright and continue some kind of forward momentum, but at what expense?
At the expense of our peace, ease and happiness – our natural states of being
At the expense of our own growth and freedom from our own shackles
At the expense of our health – our true and whole health including our mental health and our spiritual joy
It requires time
It requires energy
It requires trust
It requires un understanding that we are not our thoughts, we are not our experiences, we are not our hardships, we are not the conditions of our health, we are not our emotions, we are not our qualification our job title or our marital status, we are not our diagnosis, we are not our dis-eases
When we begin to understand that we absolutely experience all of those things but are not those things, it takes pressure off.
We are just having a human experience, and another, and another, and we will meet these experiences and conditions and communications from our body and our spirit with interest and curiosity or we will grasp onto them, hide behind them, attach to them, identify with them, maybe even fear who we might be if we weren’t them.
We keep our selves held together so so tightly, sometimes trusting more in medication than our own innate knowing or trusting medication over really sitting in the murkiness of it all to take some kind of interest in ourselves, take some kind of responsibility for the path that led us here, truly honouring our journey so far, the “glue” that is holding us together, the things that help us “cope” with the pain whether that be addiction which can be in anything – shopping, drinking, drug use, social media, exercise, learning, distractions…or reaching externally for the peace, ease and happiness that we carried into this life with us and have unlimited access to at all times.
I am by no means suggesting anyone stop taking medication without a doctors consent, but rather, spend as much time, energy and money on truly sitting with ourselves to understand what choices we have made, what choices we are still making, the possible effect of our medications on our emotional and spiritual welfare, let alone the state of our body systems.
Consider the respect or lack of respect we are paying ourselves, consider the relationship we are in with ourselves, how much importance we even put on this, and the health of communication within that relationship, the level of conflict between different aspects of ourselves, the breathability of that relationship, the honesty of that relationship we have with ourselves.
Being a pure expression of our truth, in complete alignment, uses the least amount of effort, because that is who we are, who we should feel comfortable to “be”, but when we find ourselves pretending, or hold many aspects of ourselves back to fit in over here, and fit in over there, to be seen over here, and important over there, we are costing ourselves unnecessary energy, we are telling out bodymind that we are under threat, we begin functioning in a state of fear which “costs” even more, and we are moving further and further away from our natural state.
This is not to say we won’t experience the FULL spectrum of emotions – we absolutely will, that is the human journey, and so is becoming comfortable with those emotions because they are communicating something to us and when they do – how do you respond?
Do you allow yourself to be deep in it?
To cry, to yell, to move, to breath, to support your body in moving what it needs to move.
This is different to going and destroying yourself in the gym - which is beneficial for other reasons but more of the same “stress” on the nervous system, more heat, more fire, when the body needs nurturing, needs soothing, needs stillness in order to relay your own wisdom to you and needs a whole lot of compassion.
We are responsible for our happiness
For our growth
For our rock bottoms, our time down there, the wisdom we can gain from such an experience, the beautiful shedding, the new space we create as a result of that shedding.
For taking interest in not just our physical appearance, but the true health of our internal world.
The most toxic thing we feed ourselves is our own fear, our own worry, our own stories – and even more so – the fear, worry and stories we give no voice but give a home in our body. Our cells are literally carrying all of this, and we can begin a healing journey by first taking deep and compassionate interest in ourselves in this way.
By saying “I am ready to meet you, all of you, let’s do this”
Considering the roles we are playing
The resent or bitterness we are carrying
The rules we place on ourselves
The patterns in our day that we are attached to, at the detriment of our physical, spiritual or emotional health
The patterns we justify
The stories we tell ourselves including “this is just who I am” or “I’ve tried everything” or “there’s no point”
The triggers in our life that have the potential to activate our healing
We do not have to wait for rock bottom to begin developing this new relationship with ourselves, but I can tell you having hit one of my own emotional rock bottoms last week, it was incredibly healing. I had experienced the first layer a few weeks earlier, and then found myself literally swallowing down an energetic purge to make it home to safety where I spent the next 5 hours breaking down.
I was aware of what was happening, I was surprised at how much I had been holding, I wanted so badly to just lay in someones lap so they could tell me it would be ok. I also knew that I needed to experience this fully on my own and remind myself it was ok.
We need not be afraid of being in this place.
We can purge in many ways, because it is literally a clearing, so at times when we think it is something that is “going around” or even unexplained food poisoning that doesn’t make sense, while nurturing ourselves physically and taking necessary action, allowing for rest, we can also trust that our body knows exactly what to do.
Our purge may present through energy release, through an outburst, through tears, through sobbing – this is grief that needs to be moved, in fact sobbing supports the clearing of the sadness and grief from the lungs according to traditional Chinese medicine.
A break down is literally a breaking down
Of old fears
Of a soul that cries out ENOUGH
Your body saying NO MORE
And it is something we can absolutely sit with, meet, allow and embrace
By doing so we can rebuild, re-organise, create new stability, new space and begin to experience the peace and joy we so deserve.
My door is open if you need support in this process and within the contemplation. If it is a safe space you need, a trained practitioner to help you in processing what you are experience, I can be this safe space for you in a session, but I want to empower you in this moment, you can also do this for yourself.
This may be a friendship, a family member, an intimate relationship, even a relationship with a colleague.
Fear can express itself in many ways. From the turmoil inward and via the subtle voice of behaviour outward, through our language, those little comments we throw out or receive that don't feel so nice, through outbursts of anger or epic explosions.
We might recognise our own fear as not feeling valued or seen in that relationship (this may actually be the truth or a an expression of fear)
We might recognise fear as paranoia, anxiety or jealousy, or the need to be with that person to feel safe or worthy or loved - that is no ones responsibility other than our own and it is possible.
This might look like stories we create, tell ourselves and believe ie “I’m obviously not important enough” “They don’t make time for me”.
It might look like comparison and expectation “they make time for that person” or “I want my relationship to look like this this and this” which is actually passing our own judgement and expectation onto someone else for them to hold and juggle.
It might look like needing something from that person, and that person not actually having the capacity or learned behaviours to meet you there or give you that (or the desire at that stage of their life).
It might look like needing to resolve something for the sake of it being resolved because some aspect of you feels validated by being in that relationship. This could include casting all of your own knowing and your own values aside just to simply be at peace within something that may not actually be respectful or aligned with you.
Here is what will help:
Remind yourself that every single person is juggling their own balls. Their work/study ball, their family responsibility ball, their mental health ball, their physical health ball, their awareness of self ball, every other relationship ball....your relationship with that one person is just one ball, and it is not their responsibility to make you feel loved, safe, needed, worthy, seen, supported. You deserve these things of course, and in healthy, balanced relationships built on trust it will be the natural environment but it is not their responsibility
Things also change, life circumstances change, priorities change, paths split in two and take different courses, we are met with health challenges or health challenges of loved ones which might take our time, energy and attention for a while.
Our insecurities, although not all our own doing, are our own responsibility to meet, understand, process and move beyond. Human relationships are an incredible part of this journey, our mirrors, our training grounds, our battle fields at times...you get to choose whether each relationship is creating the conditions for personal growth, happiness and therefore health, or depleting you of these things.
Just be aware of these expressions of fear, the language of fear, the behaviour of fear...you will pick on them because they feel “bleh”, they feel lower vibrational, they feel the opposite to your natural state of being which looks, feels and sounds like love and trust.
Know that conflict is a form of heat and fire has the potential to burn away that which needs to be renewed, restored. Conflict is not something to be feared but something to develop as a skill - like any other. It takes deep self worth and practice to be able to stand in your centre and own your truth. Just remember that truth is yours only - the other person has there own truth in that moment and that is ok too.
The relationships of love and trust don’t need anything from you, do not expect anything of you, they inspire you, they have a sense of joy, ease and lightness about them. These are the people in your life that you can go weeks or months without seeing and that's no big deal, because their foundation is trust. I am so grateful for many of these beautifully meaningful relationships in my life and I hope that this brings light to the relationships you are in.
I believe it was Elkhart Tolle that said if we find our here and now intolerable we only ever have three choices
1) remove yourself from the situation
2) accept your situation
3) change it somehow
This morning I sit here pondering whether it could be a combination of all threes Remove yourself from your own hooks of expectation, accept the part you play in that relationship and make a choice for yourself about whether the season of that relationship is naturally evolving OR change the dynamic of that relationship i.e. find a gentle, peaceful ok-ness in how you dance with one another in that relationship, dropping away the "shoulds", the expectations, the neediness, the comparisons with other relationships which are only going to weigh you down. You don't need that.
You do need to know that what you contribute to any relationship (your half of it) will only be as much as you contribute to yourself. Meaning what you are needing from others you are truly needing from yourself. When we make peace with this idea, the edges of expectation soften and we begin to remember and reconnect to the beauty in each of our relationship containers, because we realise we are partly responsible for the cleanliness and sacredness within them - and if that relationship doesn't feel sacred, balanced, equal - that is your insight right there. Begin with deep respect for yourself, and a gentle, compassionate unpacking of your own suitcases from your past that have been craving your time and attention.
With love xx