I'm speaking to you....
You know who you are....
It’s hard to see through the fear that unravelling triggers. I find myself at the end of another year in which I had imagined myself joyfully sharing the fruits of years of hard work, both the beautiful art that I have created and the inner work it has taken to fulfill this dream. I imagined having something worth celebrating as 2021 turned into what I thought would be infinite possibility. I thought I knew how it would, or should look.
Instead I’m lying flat on my back in pain, not knowing where to turn for help, afraid that my dreams are shattered and feeling powerless to change any of it. After what appeared to be infinite possibility, I see only limitation and loss. The panic attacks are back and I feel utterly out of control.
This really doesn’t look good. How can I share all of this when others are celebrating their success? Who wants to hear, let alone see, failure, loss and weakness? I’ll probably turn everyone off to ever looking at my work if they see what a mess I am. I should just continue to hide away until I have "it" more together. Those are the thoughts that run through my mind as I contemplate what I know my soul will not allow me to avoid doing.
So I search deeper for my truth, because ultimately THAT is what I’m committed to. It is my north star, my guiding force. I’ve said it all along. My work, actually my life, is about living my truth, embodying my truth. It is all I have worked for, dived into the depths of my soul for. But what if the truth doesn’t look so great, doesn’t fit my image of who I want to be? Or of what others expect me to be? Will "they" recoil and will I be left in a puddle of shame and regret if I show my face this way? Actually, for perhaps the first time ever that doesn’t matter to me. This is who I am in this moment in the final hours of 2021. This is my truth right in this moment and all that matters is that I stand in my truth no matter what it looks like or feels like. I made a promise to myself and staying true to that promise makes this year a successful one for me. It was never about success in any other form. I just thought that it was,
I am not helpless or powerless to shift anything, but at this very moment the truth is that I am unable to physically support my body for very long. My spine is too unstable. The truth is that I am in pain and afraid. I feel "spine-less".
And the truth is also that I know my soul brought me here so that I would keep my promise and find the courage to stand in my truth and be seen just as I am without shame. To be brave enough to be seen when things, when I, don't look the way I think "acceptable" looks. To risk rejection, judgment and worst of all shame. This takes tremendous courage and strength, more spine than I ever thought possible, when all of my life being strong and able meant being OK in others' eyes and my own. It meant survival on so many levels.
I know myself. I know that nothing can make me give up on myself and that my commitment to living my own truth makes a difference in this world even if I can’t see it, even if I feel inconsequential. In a world where so many of us struggle to do that one thing, to be true to who we are, standing in my truth feels huge. I heard a Buddhist Monk say recently that if 1000 of us light a single candle we see the light of 1000 candles. But if one of us takes our light away it might not be perceived as less light, but it is. Each of us, each of our light, our truth, our awareness, our healing, makes a difference and adds to the light of everyone else and the planet. We each matter.
So in spite of my own physical condition, a mirror of what I see and sense on our planet at this time, this is a “Happy” New Year for me, not because of how anything external looks or feels, but because I can look in the mirror and feel at peace with myself. Knowing that at this time, with all of the courage I have, I stood up in possibly the most important way that I can and have added to the illumination of the world.
Happy New Beginning you beautiful, courageous, brilliant being.
You Know who you are....
With love and a prayer for all of our lights to shine more brightly in the coming year....
"Awakened Heart", a watercolor created when love truly entered and my heart began its healing journey.