Pumpkin spice coffee brewing, Christmas music softly playing, candles flickering, and decorations offering a gentle colorful sparkle, something still pulls at me on this dark morning the day before Thanksgiving.
You are you own entity. A life of leaning into others reality because there was no connection to my own has evolved. Looking within instead of looking to others for worth, acceptance and answers is a new way of being offering wholeness, groundedness, and autonomy. Yet it also comes with responsibility.
Instead of feeling bad about everything because essentially “I am bad,” one looks for where they really do need work and really did make mistakes. And not with an overwhelming “I am bad” mentality, but with a realistic view of themselves; that we all are human and are flawed, imperfect and often messy.
So look within and forgive because then you can forgive others for the same flaws that may look different but are very human.
As dawn approaches, only a soft haze in the horizon beyond the hill while all else is still and dark, the thought arises that you do deserve to have a day without self punishment even in spite of yesterday’s failures and flaws. More so, you need your own compassion holding mistakes in your hand like sea worn pebbles, investigating each one gently with curiosity and tenderness.
The heart constricts banded by a tightness learned in childhood. How does one go back and unwrap the wires that cut so deep? Embedded into the vessel they will bleed if removed. As each attack happened with no recourse of protection or love, the child decides she is to blame. As she grows so does the blame she takes upon herself. Her heart constricts with self-loathing not love. She extends softness to others but for herself…contempt.
It is a process, this practice of self love.
Fall has come and gone, the trees are bare as wind whistles through the branches. Sitting by the fire cozily with the cat by my feet, thick fog fills the back hillside while the hickory trees nearby in the hedgerow sway dancing like black lacy tendrils entwined together. The bareness seemed to happen overnight but it really took weeks. Perhaps night winds took the last leaves. Dawn comes in a steely grey gloom, the sun cast away behind the smoky carpet.
Days like this tend to be more common than sunny ones in NE America during the long months of winter. One must make their own joy. Dragging the six foot fake Christmas tree up from the basement, a day is spent decorating the house with strings of lights a week earlier than usual. The brightness of color and sparkle lift the dreariness. As the gold shimmery tree skirt is gently tucked around the tree base, Molly the cat curls up under it in her favorite resting place, the echo of purring floating up to my ears.
Hunting season has begun, so bright red is added to outdoor gear for the usual meadow walks. And unless it is raining, the walks continue to boost my moral, invigorate the senses and keep my heart healthy. Keeping attuned to the needs of the heart- spiritual, emotional and physical, are what makes a day fulfilling and sustaining.
You are OK just as you are. Breathe. Slow down. Moving into the next moment before living the present one makes me hurried when there’s no need to. That is the injured brain operating from years of unprocessed trauma. Don’t judge it, befriend it.
You are a child of the Universe. You DO have a right to be here; and not by other’s standards but by your own. Remember what you have suffered, because it is with accepting the truth of your past that you can offer gentle kindness, patience and loving support to yourself now.
Does the light within burn with rage? Is it heated from resentments, or does it radiate outward with warm loving light? Love radiates from the core. When it cannot be found look to yourself for permission to provide it. It’s OK, it’s OK, it’s OK. It’s OK to feel OK, that you are enough too just as you are.
The tapes played since childhood say differently, but they can be challenged and over time success can miraculously occur. Maybe the harsh voices can be silenced only for a brief moment but with work over time the moments expand.
The high demands of self cause a rigidity and standard which cannot be met and is more than can be humanly accomplished. In one single moment relief can be felt once you let it causing the body to relax; muscles, ligaments, repetitive negative thoughts, right down to internal organs including the colon and heart. The stiffness of ‘must do’ transforms into a way of life worth living.
It is only myself giving myself a hard time. It is only myself that need give permission to offer gentleness, kindness and love.
With relief the weariness has lifted. Falling into a funk emotionally makes it an easy place to stay, the power of inertia or lack of it. A bit of sunshine does the body good too. So the meadow is now brown, dead and drab. It doesn’t mean I have to be too.
“Make your own light,” a friend suggests.
Yes, make my own light. Find it within, enjoy it, and it radiates outward naturally. A tendency to compare myself to others leaves me consistently lacking. Following my own instincts and needs is authenticity. Have the bravery and courage to discover that uniqueness and provide for its fruition.
I feel bloated and very fat but more on track and in better control now that my health is returning. People don’t generally gain weight when sick. Even with no appetite I ate…and ate.
The real need? Sympathy and a loving touch. Samuel is just not like that. Feeling all on my own, my method reverts to surviving as I did at age eight, eating until so sick I threw up in the night.
As health returns the ability to confront the negative put-downs about myself improves dramatically. It continues to be the hardest but most rewarding job . The emphasis has always been, “lose weight.” And has been my biggest hurdle since age eight when my slender kid body blew up like a balloon from eating the trauma down.
It is really about about the food I fill my brain with. Loving thoughts are the key. Good food for thoughts. That is the challenge and the work.