My mind has been pleasantly stimulated on this lazy Sunday into a creative, soul invigorating space, and I am loving it! I have been so exhausted for the past couple of weeks as my many hats have been piling on top of each other, testing my endurance and capacity to multi task and take care of myself at the same time. Today I have given my mind space to wander and relax which has helped spur me into action towards self care and spiritual exploration.
I am finally enjoying some down time in my new house and having nourishing conversations with my new roommates. I so thoroughly enjoy the moments when I am able to sit and talk with someone and we can relate to one another on an authentic level. I have a tendency to shut myself in when I am depressed or ruminating about life. I often find I need solitude to work through my inner turmoil before eventually coming back out into the social realm of the world. Sometimes that solitude is really important for me. It gives me time to slow down, hear my own voice, meditate, create art, and find grounding before reemerging. But sometimes it takes these social interactions for me to see a reflection of myself in others. It’s a delicate balance, like much in life, to maintain a healthy level of social and alone time. It’s challenging to achieve that balance when battling the ups and downs of things like PTSD, anxiety, depression. I am feeling like for the first time in my life I am getting a handle of it all.
From a husband whose addictions I didn’t want to admit were a problem, to a boyfriend who’s influence over me drove me into poverty, homelessness, and isolation from my mother and closest family members… Throughout these relationships my friends and family have always stood by me. Even if that sometimes meant standing by me from a distance, in silence. They could see what was happening, but couldn’t convince me of anything I didn’t want to see. Even after I pushed so many of them away and turned my back on those who loved me the most. I forgot who I was, but they didn’t. I don’t think I ever perceived how much I had lost control of my life until my mental and physical health declined so much to the point that I couldn’t ignore it anymore. I was having several panic attacks a day and teetered between scared and angry all the time. I hated my boyfriend and I hated myself for being with him. My mother told me that relationship was like a case of the “body snatchers”. She didn’t recognize her daughter. It was hard for her to watch me allow someone else’s definition of me to define how I saw myself and how I behaved.
Now, as Spring blooms and I settle further into my life in Boulder, Colorado I continue to reclaim my identity from those who I have allowed to define me over the years. As each moment unfolds I find joy and gratitude in just simply being. My self respect and attitude towards life have improved greatly. Time truly is a healer! It feels so good to be back! My path is lined with the most amazing people cheering me on every step, and for some reason it took some major distance for me to see it this clearly. The true testament to all of this growth is the life that I have forged for myself in Boulder, and the ongoing growth I’m experiencing while discovering what it’s really like to be out on my own, without a co-dependent relationship holding me back. The fact that I have been able to manifest the kind of authentic existence I have here with so much love and support in my new community is truly awe inspiring to me. It has helped affirm for me the person I have always been. I haven’t felt this connected to my core values and inner sense of self in a very long time. I have come to a beautiful place in life where I am enjoying the journey. I know that I am always growing and learning. We all are.
This is where my real fight begins. This is where the revolution starts, with loving and respecting oneself. It’s not an easy path, but it is incredibly rewarding. I feel like my life has purpose and that even on my hardest days I am still driven to simply live. To be alive is a precious thing. To live inside this human body is a gift. I took it for granted for a long time and more than once tried to cut my own life short before I ever really understood that I could pull myself out of that dark place. I certainly didn’t do it alone, and I continue to be astounded at how blessed I am to have so much love in my life. Finally, I can say that circle of love includes my own self love. It’s been a long road to find it, but I am so glad I survived this long to know what this feels like.