Monday, January 9, 2012
Don't you love when something happens and you see yourself responding/reacting differently than you may have in the past? This happened to me just yesterday. We had our monthly women's circle at my house and during the activity part I struggled with the activity. I tried to do it, but just couldn't be inspired, couldn't follow it through, and just really felt like I didn't want to do it. So, I didn't. That may sound really small and like it doesn't even really matter. But, for me, it was big. First of all, by honoring myself I was able to use the activity in my own way to realize whatever I was supposed to realize. If I had followed the directions, and done the activity, like I would feel was expected of me (so as not to call attention to myself, not follow directions, or look some certain way to others) I would not have gotten the message that Spirit was giving me through the activity. Secondly, I affirmed my own feelings and allowed myself to go with what I felt I needed to do, regardless of what anyone would think. Those things are huge for me. In the past, I would ALWAYS put others first. Whether it was others' needs, others' perceptions, others' opinions....whatever. No matter what feeling I was having, if I felt you might think negatively of that feeling then I would ignore it. If I was in a group situation, I would NEVER stray from what the group was doing, even if I didn't want to do it. (tangent: I wonder, now, if that lack of self confidence and self care was what allowed me to get so deep into addiction. My "not saying no" was less about what I wanted, and more about what you thought.) And, during the activity yesterday, I did not even think "I'm going to honor myself," "I'm going to allow myself to NOT do the activity"...it just kind of happened. I didn't realize what I had done until later when I was talking to my daughter, Amber, about it. Then I was like, "Hey! Cool! I let myself NOT do it because that's what I needed!" I think what happened was that I'm just in deep pain and deep grief so I really just don't care. My self care yesterday happened because I just couldn't do it. I just didn't have the energy. I just didn't care enough about what other people thought so I just didn't do it. And, then, during sharing, I cried openly and allowed those women to "hold" me and empathize with me. I went there. That's big, too. I think I felt, for one of the first times in my life, that I could trust and let go of my composure in that circle. I felt that they would love me even if I cried....and maybe even more. They didn't care that I didn't do the activity. They understood. It was about me and not about whether I successfully completed the assignment. This would have been one of those things I would have shared with Jamie. She would have told me how proud she was of me and how much I'm growing. She would have made me feel really good about it. Interestingly enough, I think Jamie has everything to do with this growth. Through her death I'm learning how to allow myself to feel, how to let myself go there, and how to walk through my pain without disassociating from it. I don't have a choice because the pain is so deep that I can't get away from it if I try. I'm grateful for all of it.