I know, it’s been a while. I decided to take some time off to work on myself. The beautiful thing is that it coincided with Neuroblastoma giving Ben a pretty big break so I’ve had some extra time.
As you may remember, I’ve been working on obtaining my yoga therapy certification. I started the final phase of this journey this past June and have been gently unfolding ever since. I guess it’s been my version of Elizabeth Gilbert’s bestseller, “Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman’s Search for Everything.” And while I haven’t found everything, I’ve certainly learned a lot about who I am. Earth shattering things. Well, at least they’re earth shattering to me.
I didn’t realize how terrified I was to simply be “seen.” I’ve always been one to hide. Hide from friends. Hide from family. Hide from daily life. The further I could sink into a background, the safer I felt. It wasn’t fun there, but at least I felt safe. It begged the question: Why is “safe” so important to me? The past thirteen years of my life has been fraught with unsafe things… the constant thought of potentially losing of my son, the uncertainty of love relationships, tremendous amounts of loss, feeling the distance between myself and people I hold dear in my heart… always blaming myself for being “weird” or “quirky” and expecting – no, demanding – for people to not take me very seriously. A sense of humor is much easier to deal with than feeling vulnerable and unsafe. And if I ever let any of that vulnerability seep out, I had to quickly cover it with something to make YOU more comfortable. Meanwhile, it did absolutely nothing for my mental health.
I craved a safety that I couldn’t even create with every defense mechanism that I had in my bag of tricks. So I decided to change course and take a look at perspective. Now, THAT was something I had control over. I could look at something from any point of view that I wanted – even the crappy stuff in my life. And I’m learning to continuously search out the good in every situation and discard what serves no reasonable purpose.
So, I’ve sat back and have watched what’s been happening over the last few months. There’s no lack of hate out there… this latest election showed the hideous side of many people, spewing anger about the horrors that will happen if either side won. It’s been exhausting. I rarely share my political views because I don’t think of myself as being especially politically astute. And I’m really of the mindset that my vote doesn’t count. I DID vote, but I’m pretty sure my ballot is still sitting somewhere in Aurora unopened. I don’t have faith that the political system is on the same spiritual awakening journey that I’m currently navigating. It all feels so out of control and while I used “my voice” to vote, I’m not confident that anyone’s voice was truly heard. Honestly, though, it’s been so hard to hear anything at all over all this hatred. I’m very concerned about our future as a country, especially if we can’t even simply be kind to one another. I’m planning to use what voice I’m developing to spread love and kindness. Any other way just doesn’t make sense. And any other way just doesn’t seem to matter.
The biggest “a-ha” piece that I’ve learned so far has been the fact that I am not defined by anyone else’s thoughts. YOU are defined by your thoughts, but I am only defined by mine. And you are not defined by my thoughts, either! Isn’t that refreshing? For whatever reason, that brought a tremendous amount of comfort to me. It might be that this is a super basic way to look at life, but it makes a lot of sense to me. And I’m choosing to look at it all through a lens of love. Because of this, I feel that my relationships are becoming stronger because I feel stronger. And, I am not constantly worrying about what you think of me. Think what you will. You’re going to anyway!
But know that whoever you are, from my perspective, I think you’re amazing. Despite your faults. Despite what you think of me. Offer the light you have instead of the fear that so often pushes through first.
Love is the answer.