2015: What are you willing to let go of?
At the beginning of 2015 a healer who I was working with wrote down on a piece of paper, “What are you willing to let go of?” That paper has lived on my wall since and this question would very clearly become the theme of my year.
Letting go is something that is and always has been a real challenge for me. I have an obsessive and unforgetting mind that likes to hold on to things from years prior and seemingly never let them go. This past year I was both forced and chose to face some serious shit and have multiple conversations with myself surrounding this question.
What WAS I willing to let go of?
I wanted to heal so badly and it was in my hands to shed in order to make space and move forward. It was in my hands to make that choice no matter what the circumstance or environment or how deep rooted it was in me. It was my choice to recognize that letting go was in my control. Having faith and trusting that everything was not only already okay, but going to work out for the best was in my control. My whole reality was in my control.
This resulted in so much shedding. So much letting go. Not all successfully. Some things are still holding on for dear life and demanding my attention. I hear youuu and I’m getting there I swear! But beyond the things that are sticking, boy did I release a lot this year and it’s all for the better.
Shedding is painful. I wonder if when snakes shed their skin if they feel it. I wonder if it hurts as much as shedding people, places, things, emotions, habits, addictions. I wonder if they grieve their skin once it’s gone. It is not a pretty process but the most worthy one I can think of.
One thing that I really appreciate in my life is that almost 100% of the time when I’m going through something I can reach out to most anyone and will find that they are going through the same thing in their own way. Know this and check and see if it rings true for you, because I bet if you pay attention you will see that it does. If you’re feeling like the world is beating you up ask someone how they’re doing, what they’re doing and I can almost guarantee you, you will find multiple people dealing with something similar.
For so much of my life I felt as though I was the victim of some joke the Universe was playing. Poor me, everything and everyone is out to get me and no one could possibly understand because no one has it as bad as I do. True story, when I was about nine or ten my two best friends and I sat in my mom’s living room and had an actual competition about who had the worst life. Every time one person said something awful the other would try to top it.
I was obsessed with being the sickest with the worst problems. Obsessed with being unique through my sickness. I thought it made me special and part of a class of people who “got it” more than other people. I was obsessed with it to the point where I thrived on seeking out and surrounding myself with people who actually were the sickest with the worst lives.
Very quickly I learned through major exposure to people with actual real horrible insane traumas that I not only did not have it worse than most people, but that everyone goes through their own shit. Everyone. Every single person no matter how happy or stable they are has gone through it in their own way. Chances are they are happy and stable because they HAVE gone through it. This is important to know. It is important for many reasons. Empathy, humility, comfort, and connection are the four that come to mind right now.
I didn’t know who I was and what I did know I hated or was embarrassed or scared of. All I knew is I was deeply sad and deeply disconnected from myself and most of my peers. The only way I knew how to associate with the majority of them was by disconnecting myself even further. I thought if others knew or saw how sick I was then they would want to be my friend. They would want me as someone who they could connect with through their darkness. Someone who even though they never spoke to before, they could rely on as a shoulder to cry and a place dump all of their problems onto. I could take it. I wanted to take it. And it was just as selfish as it was a genuine want to help people. Because at the root of it connecting to and helping people was the real thing I wanted. I just didn’t exactly know how to get there without bringing my shit into the mix.
I didn’t know how to see my own worth or how to validate myself as a human without being sick or in chaos or drama. Any stability I had, I chose to ignore or erase through some ailment or issue. This is something that I have been working hard on shedding for about ten years. And it was something that I chose as the biggest thing I wanted to shed in 2015. This was what I wanted to let go of.
As I began seriously doing the work the things I needed to shed came through loud and clear. It came through with people from my past-- who represented the lack of self worth I fed off of-- infiltrating my mind like I had just been abducted by aliens who implanted a video of all the times I was hurt or embarrassed on loop. Or through my body, specifically my pelvis and back which put me out of commission for six days almost every month and forced me to find new paths to healing as it took yoga out of my life (for now). Or through my relationship with food after years of searching for health through strict boundaries and restrictions which only strengthened my fear and always lead to an eventual relapse or binge. Or my marriage teetering on the edge while we navigated the roughest financial and emotional waters we’ve ever experienced.
Each time I shed, a part of me would go into freak out mode. These things I held onto so strongly were in some ways protecting me. A protection that was connected to old stories. It was outdated and no longer needed and at this point doing only harm. While logically I knew this, subconsciously as I let go my ego would go into a bit of a tail spin. It/I was terrified and vulnerable.
Thanks to a lot of work and support, this time I didn’t let it take me out completely. I recognized it for what it was. I felt the feelings and sat in the freak out. I held tight to my faith of it all being part of this process and at the end of it I came out stronger and lighter and better.
I am more of an adult now than ever. More myself. Clear on what I want in my life and what I am here to do with my life. Willing to do the work no matter how hard. My marriage is stronger and my love for my husband has grown beyond the capacity of what I thought possible. I have more faith in myself and feel rooted in the knowledge that the Universe has my back. It has all of our backs if we’re willing to let it.
I feel more ready to grow up and show up and take life with both hands. I am allowing stability into my body and life and I am healing things I wasn’t ever sure I’d be able to really truly heal-- like my relationship with food. Shedding was/is hard but so worth it. I can’t express that enough.
2015 was one of the harder years of my life but it was also one of the best. Because in 2015 I learned to love myself and my life more than I had in the 30 years prior. I am so grateful for all of the lessons I learned and new tools I added to my ever growing toolbox. I am so grateful for this life and all of the good bad and in-between. And I am so grateful to be able to share these things with you all.
There are a lot of new beginnings happening in my life right now. Some of which I am not ready to share yet, but soon. One of which is starting my health coaching business. This blog will be a large part of that. I believe so strongly in the power of healing through connection and sharing and I hope to do just that. Help those who are interested through sharing my process my knowledge and my life. This is a small part of what I can offer. To learn more about my other offerings and how you can work with me in a one on one capacity check out the other sections of this website.
Keeping with the spirit of shedding I decided to let go of my old blog and start fresh with this website. It may seem silly since I don’t really have much of an audience for this (yet ;) ), but it took a lot for me to decide to start a new blog. In the end it was clear to me that it was time to let go. A blank slate for this new venture on this new website in this new month in this new year. And it’s time to do it right and consistent and use this platform to help anyone who I can.
Here’s to continuing to let go of what no longer serves us and to a powerful love filled 2016!
What are you willing to let go of? Did you do any shedding in 2015? Share in the comments below, I’d love to hear about it!