Our strength and soul are not built in the shiny happy moments but within those moments in life when we feel our weakest and most vulnerable.
I’ve been here before. I walked this path over and over again for many, many years. I know the landscape, what’s coming next. I know who lurks in the shadows and what dangers lay in wait for me. I know where the slippery slopes are and what will happen if I start to slide down one; I know how hard the landing will be and the damage it will cause not only to my physical body but to my soul, as well. I know the strength and fortitude that will be needed to make it through to the other side, but for the moment am unclear if I have it in me to walk this path again.
I made a solemn promise to myself years ago, when I cleared this long, arduous journey the first time, that never again would I sell myself out to make anyone else happy. Never again would I silence my words to keep the peace, let go of bad behavior because it was easier than confronting it or sacrifice my well-being and health because someone else demanded to come first at all costs. No more giving up on my dreams, no more time spent taking care of everyone else’s needs and being left too spent to see to my own. No more allowing myself to be manipulated because it was easier than trying to make someone understand my point of view on something I felt strongly about.
It took me forever to appreciate that I was worth seeing to; that my needs, dreams, and desires are just as important as anyone else’s. I, and only I, am the guardian of my soul, sanity and well-being, and though I am a lot of things, a martyr isn’t one of them. Sacrificing the first three decades of my life because I thought I had to, completely shutting down everything important and sacred to me because it didn’t “fit” into someone else’s plan, definitely didn’t bring me any closer to Saint status. It did, however, rob me of many years I can never get back. Leaving in its wake a wealth of ways not to do things and a sense of urgency to finally get started on a path I chose for myself.
Except now that I have done the work to heal and prepare myself for the next stage of my journey – life has decided to bring into my world a situation so similar to the one before I swear I have traveled back in time. My soul and mind are astounded at the sheer audacity of life – Why? What lessons could I have possibly missed the first time? I dedicate my life to caring and helping others, but I must be able to care for myself as well. Yet, life circles around, tying my hands again and putting me into an impossible, situation where I either need to make sacrifices or lose everything and walk away – again.
I want as much light in my world as possible. I know there will be darkness at times, and I understand that. I just do not want the same darkness reappearing that I have already embraced the lessons and moved on from. Doesn’t seem right. Doesn’t seem fair. Which probably means having it come back around is going to take me to a much deeper level, a more profound truth that I am only now prepared for. .
The path in life isn’t a straight line; it’s a spiral. You continually come back to things you thought you understood to see a deeper truth. – Barry Gillespie
The situation, while still very fresh, is opening old wounds. Triggering thought patterns and behaviors that I had walked away from long ago. The difference is now, with some quiet reflection, I can see my responses to those triggers more readily and make changes to correct my missteps before any real damage is done. My heart hurts at being here again, and I find that if I’m not careful, I could very easily slide right back into who I was before I healed and learned. I think that’s what scares me most of all. I have worked too hard. Faced too many demons and hard life lessons to go back to the shadow of the woman I was before.
Maybe when certain things spiral back into our lives that’s exactly the point. To further strengthen our resolve to take new paths. To be as courageous and brave as we always dreamed we could be. Maybe this particular reoccurrence is showing me that while I have come far – I still have a way to go. Maybe I need to see myself handling this in a new, more evolved way than I had previously, with more strength and confidence in myself and my worth so as to turn it into a catalyst to the next big step in my life.
I find myself speaking powerful words without batting an eye and standing firm within my personal power. I will not allow myself to be a pawn now. I’m stronger than before. Smarter, too. Just because the past has an unsavory habit of repeating itself doesn’t mean that I must react in old patterns. Perhaps, this has come around again to show me how very far I have come and to give me an opportunity to try all the new skills and mindsets I have worked into my soul on for size. A chance to see what works, what doesn’t and take even more knowledge forth with me.
Life may spiral around on us from time to time.
Challenging our new found confidence and tenacity in a way that shows us where we still need some work and where we have firmly cemented the changes within so that we can believe even more in ourselves and accomplishments. Our strength and soul are not built in the shiny happy moments but within those moments in life when we feel our weakest and most vulnerable.
The only way for us to know is by squaring our shoulders, being aware of our triggers and our responses to them, the lessons we’ve learned, the confidence we’ve built. Understanding that sometimes life brings things back into our world so that we can become even stronger, braver and more driven than we even thought possible, is key.
We did it once. We can do it again. However, this time, we can do it right and with a soulful integrity that honors who we are today and all of the healing, work and steps we’ve taken to get to this point in our lives. We got this. We’re brave. We’re courageous.
We go fearlessly in search of deeper truths, deeper meanings, and allow ourselves the freedom to evolve into who we are destined to be. Out of the darkness that may come again and again until we get it right. Spiraling towards a future built solidly by our amazing ability to acclimate and adapt.
Don’t fight the darkness, scatter it with your light
– J.V. Manning
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