Stop and breathe

I have had more quiet time than I usually have lately. All by choice, because earlier this year I had a very bad life attack. I have decided to use this lentern period to stop, and just breathe. I’m writing about this today because it’s been just under 5 weeks now and I feel so calm and collected in myself. I have had a challenging week this week, but the calm I have been rooting in myself these past weeks have really taken effect because as the chaos happens around me, I find myself able to pull myself out of it and see it for what it is… and external issue out of my control.

I have lost alot in my life, and in the process developed many defensive mechanisms to protect myself from feeling that type of pain again. I have also done so much work on myself in the last few years to identify these defensive / protective mechanisms and try to heal the pain that caused them. So far I feel like I’m doing a great job at working through and healing myself. Step by step, day by day and issue by issue. I have learnt that you cant tackle everything all at the same time. You have to start at the beginning or at the most obvious issue and work your way through. I find that as you get through one, it leads you to solutions for the next, and so forth. Each layer of pain you peel off identifies the next and the healing process moves to a different level as you are able to reach deeper into the core of your being.

Some tips on beginning the healing process: You have to first acknowledge that there is a problem and identify what that is, along with the behaviours that you have developed to protect yourself from that thing. Then go to the root of the problem, the beginning of its life, where it all began and literally analise that situation for what it was. Allow yourself to feel what you felt and put it all into perspective. The healing process will begin only if you a allow yourself to be vulnerable in that situation and then use the knowledge you have now to move past it. For example: My parents got divorced when I was 10 and I carried alot of pain with me as a result. When I decided to heal that hurt, I went back to when it all happened, processed the feelings my 10 year old self felt, looked at the defensive / protective mechanisms that I had developed because of it and then used the information I have now as an adult to heal my broken 10 year old heart. I was no longer a child, I am no longer a child, so I acknowledged how at 10 my feelings were valid, and I was entitled to that, but then I also acknoledged that I am no longer 10 an have to now use the tools I have to create a healthier environment for me. So I had to forgive myself first for blaming myself for their separation, then I had to forgive my parents for the choices that they made that affected me. I had to acknowledge that none of it was in my control and there was nothing that I could have done to prevent it ( this is me talking to my 10 year old self/voice). I had to have the difficult conversations with my parents about how their choices affected me and helped them to understand that I had moved past it and that I forgave them. I also apologised for the bad behaviour that I threw at them when I was young as a reaction to their choices. I think the greatest healing process for me was acknowledging that they did the best that they could with what they had at the time and understanding their pain in that time as well. I covered all my bases, and then I was able to move past this hurtful experience and look at the future in a different light. My relationship with my parents is healthier and my relationship with myself is healthier. This was a process though, it took years, because first I had to deal with me, and my pain before I involved my parents.

That was just one example to illustrate the tools I used for my healing process. Keeping in mind that everyone is different and some need more than others and some need less. It depends on each individual, and each individuals situation.

Life doesn’t stop though and even though I have been doing the work on myself every now and then I find myself in situations where I feel like I can’t breathe. Like in January this year. I call it a “life attack” because it wasn’t one thing, it was all the things that I haven’t gotten a chance to completely heal from, crashing down at once. I even hated myself for a few days, I cried for a few days and what is most important I think from this experience is that I allowed myself to feel what I was feeling and I gave myself the time to grieve, to cry and to just be sad. Being a tough cookie all the time isn’t a solution, because being a tough cookie when your heart is sore hurts you more than it helps you. Allowing yourself to feel is so important. My world came crashing down, but at the same time it was the beginning of a new chapter for me, the next layer of healing was exposed and I was able to identify pain that needed attention.

So it was perfect timing for me to use this lentern period to stop and breathe. I have stopped everything social, everything that distracts me from what I need to focus on and just take the time to heal myself and at the same time focus on my daughter as she goes through the most difficult time of her life… puberty.

I have to say, I have 2 weeks to go and I feel refreshed already. My goals are clearer, the changes I have made have been rooted in new habits. I think they say it takes 21 days to form a habit or to break one and I definately have broken some bad habits in this time and formed new ones. The reward for taking the time to work on yourself has to be the greatest reward of all time, outside of seeing huge smiles on the faces of the people you love, this has got be the best feeling I have had in a long time. A feeling of peace, of real joy, of love not only for myself but all things. Embracing the concept of love as a universal feeling. To understand that my love for my family should be no different than my love for all things alive. My love for nature comes with respect for nature, my love for people too comes with respect for people and finally the love for myself also comes with respect for myself. These things cannot be separated, and it all starts with you. You first before you can pour yourself onto others. Self care and self love is your first step and what better way to love yourself than to take the time to heal your heart so you can live a healthy life.

I hope this reaches whoever it needs to reach. I’m sending all my love and light to everyone that this post reaches. you are loved and appreciated. Thank you for taking time out of your precious lives to be with me and read my work. It means the world to me.

Tammy

Tamstame.com