Where are my socks? I can’t get up. I don’t want to get up. I don’t know why I feel this way. Why can’t I shake this? I can’t breathe, like I’m suffocating. Just move. You’ll be fine once you’re up, you’ve always been able to push. Get up and push. But I don’t want to. I don’t know if I have any push left. Just do it, get up. You have to. Where’s the coffee? I need coffee, lots and lots of fucking coffee.
When was the last time I showered? I can’t remember. Maybe a few days? I don’t know. I don’t care. Fuck, I look hell. I feel worse. Just move. Get a shower, put your make up on, people will be coming, there’s work to do. Walk the dogs. Workout. Eat…. when did I eat last? Who cares. What’s the point of all of this anyways?
You have everything you could ever want, you’re being ungrateful. Fuck, I’m so fat. How did I get fat again? Cause you don’t eat anymore. I don’t have the energy to cook. I barely have the energy to get up. It will pass. You’ll feel better. Focus on positive. Maybe I’m sick, I’ve never felt like this before… no energy, low, miserable. I don’t think it’s sick cause I never get sick. Coffee. I’m just tired. I work too much, I am not sleeping well. A nap, I’ll feel better. I never take naps. What’s wrong with me? Why can’t I shake this?
I’m getting worse. I hate everyone. The dogs are driving me nuts. Day in and day out, same fucking day all the time. What’s the point of this? I hate feeling this way, when will it stop? Why can’t I make it stop? It actually hurts, my chest, I feel like I’m in a fog, underwater, carrying 4000lbs. I need it to stop, I can’t breathe.
Focus, it will get better.
This is what my mind was like at my lowest point. I couldn’t shake it. All of the tools and skills and teachings and learning, I was frantically trying to make them work. To make them work for me. I couldn’t understand why they wouldn’t work. Why did I feel so sad despite doing what I wanted? I love my career. I have a beautiful home. I have 2 dogs that I love. Friends. Family. “Why can’t I shake this?” was a constant background thought. Most days I could push it away and put on a good face to everyone but deep inside there was a sadness I couldn’t shake. An absolutely, all engulfing sadness that just wouldn’t go away. I could pretend, but it was still there. When I looked in my eyes, I saw nothing. Hallow. Am I dead?
I believe it’s truly a talent to walk around alive, but not living. And that’s exactly what I was doing.
For most of my life, and most likely yours as well, I was told to “move on”, “get over it”, “occupy yourself”, “be positive” and it will all work out. And it did, for a really really long time. But in truth, I had a really big fucking rug that I shoved everything under. Everything that I didn’t want to deal with. That was too painful to feel. I can honestly say that I haven’t truly pinpointed a moment in time where one thing happened and I changed… I don’t think it was one thing. I think it was a combination of things… society telling me who I was, how to act, how to behave, how to deal with things, how to grieve, how to hold on, how to let go, how to dress, how to speak, how to … there’s an unwritten manual to living but no one tells you in advance and you learn the hard way… through impact. I like to call these #momentsofimpact. Something happens, you get made fun of, you get in trouble, you’re embarrassed… then you cry and then you’re told to stop crying, to grow up. It’s not one moment, it’s every moment of life. And we all process it differently.
2 years ago if you tried to hug me I would have drop kicked you. Hugging was reserved for those closest to me. I didn’t tell anyone except my closest friends and my husband that I loved them. Affection was something I struggled with, but mostly because it was closely tied to emotion. And I didn’t know how to express emotion. Except anger… that one I was really good at. Other than that, I kept it all in. Every sadness, every painful moment. I didn’t even cry alone… well, except sometimes in the shower, I would be engulfed and end up on my knees, feel better after but that would happen every blue moon.
I wasn’t unhappy but I wasn’t happy. I worked a lot, I didn’t have many close personal friendships since most of my close friends didn’t live near me and I became socially awkward in making friends. As a fitness coach, I felt heavily judged and found it difficult to let loose because of the comments, judgements etc… so I stayed in a lot. And I became a workaholic. I forgot how to have fun. I forgot to LIVE.
Until one day, the proverbial rug started to levitate from so much shit being piled under it. A crack came in the beautiful facade I had developed. It was a brief glimpse with a single thought “I’m not happy. What’s the point of success if you’re alone and lonely?” I’m married but I’m never there. I have friends but I make no effort to see them. I have family but I make no effort to see them.
And that tiny crack, covered up, again, refused to stay a tiny crack. It cracked open, wider and wider until I was forced to take a look around at the landscape of my life and ask myself “Is this really what you wanted?” The answer, unequivocally, was no. And I was forced to peek under that rug and start to understand WHY I had built the life I had. It’s a LONG story, way too long for a blog post, but trust me, far from boring! I like to understand things, know them, fully. So I applied everything to understand WHY I made the decisions I made, why I was doing what I was doing. It led me on a massive life changing soul searching journey. And the best part of the journey? I realized there really is no destination… I’ll be on a soul journey, forever and that actually excites me! There was a time when I approached it like a course, show up, learn, write a test, get a piece of paper with my name on it. And while I was searching for “the ending of understanding myself” I finally got the point of it all… there is no end, when it ends it’s death and well, that’s not what I was seeking!
I began to understand why I pushed myself so hard, why I was so driven, why I couldn’t and didn’t show and feel emotions. It was painful. And I suppose that was my most valuable lesson. I didn’t like to feel the pain of sadness, hurt, etc. But when I shut those down, I also shut down the real ability to feel happiness, joy. I was working frantically as a way to “quiet the emotions” – when I was so busy I didn’t have time to think or feel. And of course, there’s that little thing about needing approval… and so if I was successful I would be good enough and I would be loved.
But while I was subconsciously proving myself “good enough”, my life was being lived without me in it. And something, somewhere in the universe lined up one tough day and with a single thought “what’s the point? I’m not happy” changed the direction of my life, and for that I am forever grateful. I’m not sure where I would be now if it wasn’t for that fateful day and the next when a client and good friend invited me to a workshop and I decided to go… I had nothing to lose, that’s for sure.
The thing, though, is that I put 33 years of crap under a rug and while I meant to peak under it, I accidentally tore the thing off the floor – I’m nothing if not graceful. And I descended into a darkness that engulfed me. I was dealing with even the smallest of things on an emotional level that I had not ever allowed myself to feel… to the biggest, most gigantic things that most people would consider unfathomable to go through… all tangled up together.
It was messy. It was raw. It was real. It was the most real I’ve ever felt in my life. But it was so painful at times I thought my heart might literally come out of my chest. I thought several times about getting medicated. I thought numerous times that I was completely and totally insane. I didn’t do it alone. I worked with coaches, with healers, with meditations, workshops, courses, books, with doctor’s, who held the space for me to breakdown so that I could breakthrough.
See breaking down isn’t the problem. It’s not coming back up that is. When we break down we use food, medications, alcohol, drugs to numb it all. For me, restricting food, smoking and for a long time, drinking and partying were the biggest things I used, then exercise became a healthier way to deal with it… but I still wasn’t dealing with it, not fully. And so that’s why it all came back… to be dealt with. Why I lost interest in working out. Why I couldn’t get up out of bed. Why I started hating everyone and everything that I loved. I was detaching. It seems easier than going through the pain, and I suppose it was easier, but it certainly wasn’t healthier or made me happier. If anything, it robbed more of my happiness.
But in going through it, I truly realized my own strength, my own potential, my own power, and even better, a side of myself that I never allowed myself to be… a fun, loving, truly caring and compassionate person. I always knew this side of myself, and some saw it, but mostly I put out a tough, fuck everyone, I don’t give a fuck, nothing bothers me strong powerful attitude. No one could get close enough to hurt me. Now, I am more real, more vulnerable than I’ve ever been because I’m out there, with my friends, my family, my husband and everything I feel passionate about and that’s scary as all hell when you spent 33 years living closed, shut down. And while it’s scary, it’s also way more fun and certainly not boring!
The only way to truly heal it is to go through it. To allow yourself to hit rock bottom – I highly suggest using professionals to help you through this, be it coaches, healers, medical professionals… as it is truly overwhelming in ways you cannot imagine. But there is no way to find out who you really are until you shed the layers of who the world told you to be.
It’s going to be painful and messy. But it’s going to be worth every tear, every meltdown, every sleepless night because in the end you will come out of it stronger, more powerful than you ever thought possible. It’s one day at a time, rebuilding. I found myself wondering when I would “feel better” and positive and happy all the time, until I realized that I have other emotions like anger, sadness, to name just a few! And it’s healthy and important for us to honour those feelings too. We need to be allowed to feel those things. Not to live in them, but to honour them so you can see where they stem from, can express it in a healthy way and then move through it. It might be 5 minutes and it might be a whole day. But those feelings are valid and important to recognize because they teach us valuable lessons about who we really are, deep inside… the version of us that we rarely let anyone see. And sometimes, life is just sad… we miss people we don’t see, we grieve, we don’t understand how the world can be so cruel sometimes, so we allow the experience of those feelings, and then let them go and that’s healthy and normal. We have a range of emotions for a reason. Shutting them down isn’t healthy.
In my lowest moments, I remembered a really really hard day and I remember thinking “my mother didn’t raise me to be this broken girl, this mess is not me, why am I struggling so much, stand up girl, be the woman your mother raised you to be… strong, independent, powerful, take no shit but do no harm kind of woman“. And a crack of light came into the darkness. And I began to feel better. Day by day, step by step, moment by moment, I reclaimed my power. And while I have down days from time to time, in the past I wondered what was wrong with me, but now I honour those because it’s my humanity that I am experiencing. We’re not robots.
There’s only so much room under the rug before it can’t take anymore. And if you allow yourself the privilege of “breaking down” you will breakthrough. Like a phenix rising from the ashes, you will come back an even better stronger healthier version of you than you are now.
Who Am I? I am a strong, powerful, unstoppable woman. I am a wild souled woman who was born to break the mould. I love deeply and passionately, I speak for those who can’t speak for themselves. I love nature and animals. I love pretty things. I love travelling. I love messy people who don’t conform or colour inside the lines. I love fitness. I love food. I love life.
Who Am I? I A WOMAN. Let me Spell it for you. G.O.D.D.E.S.S.
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PS… leave me a comment to let me know if you’ve struggled with the question “Who AM I”? I would love to hear your experiences, I think sharing is an important part of the healing process.