I felt like I crawled out of a deep, dark tar pit and into a sweet, crystal-clear, joyfully bubbling spring.
For as long as I can remember, I walked hand in hand with pain. Whether emotionally, physically, mentally or spiritually, pain always occupied a corner of my life.
From experiencing abuse at the hands of other people to physical illness to depression, anxiety and a loss of faith in anything greater than me, I’ve been there.
It wasn’t until the recent years of my life that I realized my pain was my greatest teacher.
Shining the lights of awareness, honesty and compassion on my personal pains transformed them to something indescribable.
Last week I wrote about the idea of self-limiting beliefs, where they come from and what can be done. It takes great courage to look within and see what your own belief systems are doing to hinder you. Brutal honesty delivered in a compassionate yet straight-forward way was what brought me out of my self-inflicted delusions and set me on the path to healing.
Personally, I dealt with feelings of low self-worth. This began when I was very young as I was treated poorly by people who I thought were going to keep me safe and I did not have the tools, understanding or capacity to fend it off. Fear is not a great playmate for a child. Growing up afraid of everything and everyone makes for a hard transition into this human world. The results of this appeared very early and became even more entrenched and powerful in my adult life.
In response to low-self worth, I made reckless decisions that threatened my life; including but not limited to, involvement in abusive romantic relationships, substance usage, drunk driving, unprotected sex, as well as harboring an unhealthy relationship with food.
As I look back on many of my actions, I wonder how it is I’m still alive.
I now understand I’m here for a specific purpose and the One Creative Power behind existence was helping me through my terrible decisions in hopes that I would finally wake up to my radiance, my divine beauty, and my perfect human grace.
When I realized this and started making changes in my life, I felt like I crawled out of a tar pit and into a sweet, crystal-clear, joyfully bubbling spring. I didn’t realize just how stuck I was or how my struggles were self-inflicted. I held fast to my feelings of being a victim of life. Climbing out of that pit and crawling toward the healing waters was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. Feeling worthy of diving into that beautiful spring was even harder. But I am so glad I did it. All of it.
The most important lesson of all has nothing to do with analyzing childhood experiences, placing blame on others, my environment, myself, or anything of this material world. It all comes down to my connection with what is beyond me, beyond my human reality. It is my relationship to the interconnecting creative thread behind life.
What long ago started as a very small silent voice telling me that there had to be something more to life became an awe-inspiring light surrounding and holding me as I felt Interconnectedness.
My personal odyssey included a variety of techniques and tools (like psychology, philosophy, yoga, meditation, prayer, love, support systems, astrology, metaphysical healing) that helped me move past reckless actions and grow beyond my own self-limiting belief systems.
I also know this is a continual lifelong process involving seeking, courage, commitment, dedication, change and expansion. There is no finish line. There is no end to the awareness I need to cultivate, the sensitivity I need to practice and the honesty I need to seek. Things will always appear to challenge me and the progress I’ve made. Sometimes I slip and fall but getting back up has become easier and easier each time.