Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Monday Quotable

I’ve been going through a cleansing process for the last 6 days.  While I started by focusing on how crappy my diet had become and my desire to lose a little weight, I learned a lot about myself in the process.  I know that sounds weird coming from a person who writes weekly posts about herself, her likes, her goals, etc. but sometimes, self awareness can be repressed—often for self preservation.

As odd as it sounds, cutting everything out of my diet except raw fruit, vegetables and smoothie packets blew my blinders off and exposed the things I’ve been ignoring for years now. For instance, I used to be so good about willpower. Once I started something, I would stick to it until I hit my goal whether it dealt with career, health, travel, etc. The goal was always there waiting for me at the finish line. Everything was in reach because of hard work and planning. Then, I hit a wall and I couldn’t control the climb over it.  I lost the job that I felt defined me, was diagnosed with health issues that don’t have cures and was told having children would be a huge feat that would involve a lot of doctors and likely a surrogate. I was broken and not broken open to change…just broken.

But, slowly I recovered. I found a new lily pad to jump to in my career and then I found another. Professionally, my life started looking pretty familiar albeit not stellar—but that’s a story for a different day.  For my health, I found veganism and it gave me the best consistent bloodwork results since my diagnosis. To fill up the rest of my life, over the past few years, I’ve thrown myself into my marriage, my pets, volunteering, exercising, writing, cooking—whatever could distract me. And it totally worked. I built a stable and lovely life. I have an awesome husband and a lovely home. I feel REALLY great most of the time.  For a while, I was even believing my own happy hype.

Actually, let me dial that back. It’s not hype. I am blessed and I know it. I acknowledge there are people out there who would look at me as whiny and wish to have my problems. That may even contribute to my glossing over the sadness in my life. But eventually, dark places have to be addressed and this cleanse opened up the wounds of an incomplete life more than ever.

I was able to clearly see that I was stuck. I was going through the motions while talking about plans for changing my life. Every step towards growth led me to a scary wall…a wall with a sign that said, “You may climb and climb and still never get what you hope is on the other side.” That locked me in a place of fear and I wasn’t able to explore career changes or family expansion.

I also started channeling my sadness into anger, which left me with a short temper and a tendency to shut down. My mood sucked. Part of my plan for the cleanse included meditation and self-reflection. Through those things, I ended up discovering the vulnerability I’d been masking with anger. Luckily, I have a partner who recognized the sadness underneath—and probably has a little of his own. When I talked to him about the stuff I’m posting now, he simply said, “I know. I know you better than anyone and I see it. I’m just glad you see it now too. We’ll get through it.”

Today, I understand that while I know everything happens for a reason, it doesn’t mean I have to ignore or bury the pain of disappointment or erase the feeling of being slighted (aka, the “why me’s”). Once I dealt with that, I decided I had to forgive—or let go of that easy, idyllic life I felt I deserved after going through so much turmoil in my youth. In forgiving, I was broken open and the pain came rushing out in a quiet cry. I’m actually not sure I’ve seen the last of the tears but in letting go, I gave myself permission to open my arms wide to whatever is meant for my life—even if it doesn’t look like I expected it to.
What a 6 days it has been. Now, the process continues. Time to get back to building the new.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I completely understand what you mean about distracting yourself and avoiding 'the wall'! I see it, hopefully I'll have the courage to face it too. Great post!