Choosing Healing

Even healers can be afraid of their healing…

Oh, how I’ve been aching for myself.

A pattern has emerged in this healing, loving, returning journey of mine back to me.

For the most part on this journey, I actively, courageously, mindfully choose love. I choose and I choose again, and in those times of consistent and powerful showing up for myself and in love and not fear, I reach a breakthrough. A breakthrough so potent and revolutionizing as to dismantle old, un-serving beliefs and permit a rise so completely anew in healing, in love, in bliss, in contentment.

My first reality-shaking breakthrough on this healing journey was forgiving my father for being human; and in doing so, restoring faith, communication and love, into 24 years of an otherwise broken relationship.

Forgiveness changed my and my father’s life and relationship with another, and it was the most liberating experience I’d endured yet. When his visit out in California was over and he left, I sunk deeply, even subconsciously, into a state of escapism and self-sabotage by drinking alcohol to excess, distracting myself with a partner with whom love did not exist, neglecting my self-care, my health, my self-love.

Five leaps forward and ten stumbles back. This resistance to healing continued for longer than I wish to admit, in my mind’s attempt to create more suffering in the wake of the rejuvenating healing that I had just allowed myself. Patterns.

Just a few weeks ago, I tuned in so deeply to myself that I ran the other way yet again. I sat gently and quietly enough to love myself back into remembering my life’s purpose.

The reason I am on this planet.

What I am here to share.

It felt good to know it, to return to it, to exhale and surrender to it.

And then, before I even knew what was happening, I found myself blocking out and engaging in various distraction and resistance techniques in attempt to un-see what I had seen. Truth.

Truth is scary. Truth is unavoidable. Truth will catch up to you and surface, no matter how far, how fast, how strategically you run. And once, and only, when truth– and self-awareness– are present, you can take monumental action.

Until you shed light and awareness in a space, you can continue living in ignorant darkness; to change a thought, behavior or state of being isn’t an option when you’re unaware of its reality.

But when you tune in deeply enough to reach a state of awareness and the truth reveals itself to you… now you have a choice.

You have a choice to do something with that truth– acknowledge it, accept it, work with it, act on it– or run the other way.

Last week, I ran. I ran in the same way I did after re-building my relationship with my father. And I’m finding all too soon that running doesn’t work for me. Running leaves me feeling empty, resistant, closed off, and fearful.

This week– today– I choose courage.

Today, I choose love, presence, faith, and surrender.

I know what I’m here for.

And I am here.

 

 

I am here to break myself, and then others, back down to love: to soft, to water, to open flow.

I am here to guide myself, and then others, back to sacred empowerment, to wild, to connection, to knowledge. I am here to do this through nature.

How To Love One’s Demons

Demons. Monkey chatter, the ego, fears, self-doubt, that voice inside your head that tells you you’re not good enough– we all have them.

It wasn’t until an honest conversation with a best-friend-mirror last night in which I realized my demons were paralyzing me from writing.

I am well-versed in embracing the light. In loving it, channeling it and sharing it. I am much less comfortable and fluent in loving the dark. I knew deep down that an error in a recently published article of mine was instilling such fear in my mind that I had been avoiding Good & Grateful and neglecting the addressing of these deep-rooted emotions, and everything I had been trying to write in recent weeks felt inauthentic because of it.

It felt inauthentic because it wasn’t the piece that needed to surface; they weren’t the words of love and acceptance that my very demons needed more than anything, and anything else was neglect. And healing holds no space for neglect.

This morning, I embraced a healing first: I have journaled my demons in tangible written form for my eyes to see. I acknowledged them instead of neglecting them. And I went through each demon-fear and without judging it or trying to change it, I thanked it for being present, and I told it that I love it. Holding my heart, I went through each fear and thanked it for being here, because each of them have taught me exactly what I need to heal. I spent generous time with each demon until the flutter in my heart ceased upon reading it and instead transformed into hosted contentment, and I thanked them again.

I share this with you all because it was a powerful experience for me in working alongside my demons in the process of healing. It was an expression of love and light to the places that need them the most; the icky, messy, uncomfortable places to reach and hold onto. I also chose to embrace a further layer of vulnerability by sharing my particular demons, the ones preventing me from writing.

We are not strong, admirable or beautiful for the light we give alone. We are magic because of the way we light-work alongside our darknesses. The mind is incredibly powerful, and often times we forget that we are our toughest critics. Thank you to an inspirational, talented best-friend-mirror who helped me see this by sharing her own demons with me.  I encourage us all to explore the heart space in offering love and gratitude instead of avoidance next time our demons surface, for they will– and I know that my heart and I will be waiting.

My demons:

  • I’m terribly insecure about the title error in my elephant journal article
  • I’m embarrassed
  • It makes me feel like:
    • I’m really not a good writer
    • I shouldn’t have been and don’t deserve to be published
    • My writing is emotional fluff and I have nothing substantial to write about
    • All I do is share my feelings like an over-emotional little girl who’s trying to make up for 24 years of silence, misunderstanding and repressed expression 
    • My followers, the editors at the journal, and I think I’m not credible and that I have lost my credibility as a writer
    • My blog and Good & Grateful Instagram are now tainted with the error and they are no longer “clean” and attaining to be perfect 
    • I have nothing to write and I know nothing worth sharing that brings value to other people

And after it all, with love for the darkness and the light that makes it so,

XO, my Good’s & Grateful’s

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@Goodgrateful: Journaling + making vision boards with a soul sister = a solid Friday.

Mansplaining Yields Healing

Mansplain, verb: (of a man) explain (something) to someone, typically a woman, in a manner regarded as condescending or patronizing
(Source: English Oxford Living Dictionaries)

Last night, at a client event for my internship, I found a chocolate fountain. I couldn’t resist dipping a second stick of extra-puffed marshmallows under the melting deliciousness, and I paid for it by staining my white top.

With an escape to the restroom and quick wardrobe innovation involving my kimono-shawl knot-styled to cover the mess, I was right back to find my girlfriends (the ones whom I had originally left for the chocolate fountain).

I approached them with a how-ridiculous-does-this-knot-look hand motion and skeptical facial expression inquiry, to which a nearby male interjected, “You look great, that looks awesome.

“It’s her outfit,” nodding at my friend, “we were making fun of.”

His initial comment was telling enough– despite the event’s complimentary Prosecco (or maybe because of it) our two energies were not aligning.

“What’s wrong with her outfit?” I snapped. Besides nothing. My comment was a misfire however, considering he ignored it to continue talking at me and in my direction:

“I have to say I’m not a fan of that necklace though. Maybe because I’m a guy, I don’t know.

“But you know girls only wear necklaces like that to impress other girls, right? You know that’s the only reason why girls do that, right??”

“Are you trying to tell me what I may or may not be doing intentionally?”

“I mean it’s not for us guys, it’s for each other, you must know.”

Is this what that socioculturally-derived 21st century term mansplaining was all about?

“No, no,” I interjected.

“Are you telling me, as a man, about something that my entire sex supposedly does? Are you trying to mansplain to me my own intention behind wearing this necklace?”

The complimentary Prosecco was getting me a little bit feisty, and I knew my new rooftop-friend wasn’t prepared to get such backlash.

Mansplaining,” he scoffed.  “Yeah– yeah, I was mansplaining!” he retorted back, matter-of-factly.

With a Champagne flute in hand and a knotted-kimono covering my chocolate stain, the words well don’t flew off the tip of my tongue, spicy and sharp, and I glared into his eyes until he got the hint and turned away. I faced my new friends, almost uneasy about how they might handle my moment of fiery spirit. They thanked me, and we continued laughing and dancing about.

Though we had moved on, the man came up to me minutes later.

“I’m sorry,” he said, passing by.

“Thank you,” I said curtly.

It was my turn to speak matter-of-factly.


I share this story as a reflection on the way I could have better handled this situation. I got the man to apologize, yes, but aside from temporary egotistical victory, what good is that really?

Sans the mind-alternation of the complimentary beverages, I could have helped this man see that his insight was not only unsolicited, but unjustified and even condescending.

That maybe, this was my favorite necklace and I wasn’t wearing it for anyone but me, regardless of a male or female audience.

And that at the core of it all, he wasn’t speaking from a loving place, or to me as his equal. I could have agreed that he had every right to have his own opinion, but shared that his extended, entitled, so-claimed awareness over a population of humans whose experiences he could never empathize with was unjust and unfair and even ignorant.

And if I could have connected with him and helped him understand that in a calm and loving manner, I could have engaged in healing with just one person; healing that would ripple in his future engagements and in mine, too.

I reflect back on this interaction last night as a lesson of mine in patience and boundless love. A lesson in embracing courage and speaking my truth yes, but doing so in a kind, constructive and empathetic manner.

It appears to me that with every pained, frustrating or instigating experience, there is an opportunity for healing. Life will continue to present us with chances for healing, though they don’t often show up beautifully upon the first glance. I am learning to pay attention to the triggers, for they are some of my best teachers in this healing journey.

I hope we meet again, rooftop party friend. Because next time we do, I’ll be wearing one of my many flashy necklaces, and I will welcome you with a hug– or at least a cheers to healing.

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@Goodgrateful: The beautiful nature-mirrors that aided in my reflection the following morning. La Jolla, California.

You Weren’t Meant To Save Each Other

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Previously published by Thought Catalog at http://www.thoughtcatalog.com. The original article can be found here.


You and your partner will never be able to rescue each other: but there is someone else who can and will.

This is a story about an ego-love: a love that you love to hate and hate to love.

An audacious, fiery, carefree, exhausting love. A try-hard love, a defensive love, an I-swear-it love and a not-enough love. A love that drives you crazy and makes you second guess and pushes you away and keeps you coming back. A love where you’re never on the same page, because when one of you is up, the other is down. A love that you found, or perhaps, it found you, to prove something– to rectify and fix something. It arose to try and save you, to save them, or to save each other. This is a story about a rescue.

I wanted to save him, to heal him. Because in doing so, I was proving that I, someone like me, was deserving of and capable of being saved, too. Losing him, losing the battle of ‘saving’ him (because you will always lose in an ego-love), was the ultimate death and torture of my ego and the self-devised narrative of this worthiness-rescue game.

I was always on my toes with him. I knew from the very moment we began that he would outrun me. He would exhilarate and exhaust me, for as light and reckless as I wished to be, I had a passionate heart that weighed me down and an always-at-it-head that grounded me. But I ran. And I kept up with him, for a little bit.

I learned to play the games: to return not-so-playful and all-too-true jabs, to be a little more careless and a lot more competitive. I learned to love the way he knew how to love. But I never unlearned my own ways of loving. And sometimes, I would sneak in droplets of my love-water, biting the bullet of ego-jabs, to try and nurture his garden with encouragement, support and faith. I so badly wanted to help him grow and reach his sunlight. But his walls were solid and his knives sharp, and my efforts to drop barriers and release my light left me unarmed and burned. Despite it all, my hope and I remained desperately devoted to him.

After the failure of “us”– after the failure of my rescue– I fell into a deep depression, suffering withdrawals from my pain-addiction to him and clinging onto a dear, toxic, unhealthy, false sense of life.

I fell sick for two whole weeks when he finally left. I lost my voice. I became incapable of speaking this very trauma-induced pain of him, this pain of my own mind. In fact, I had lost my mind.

I went to all of the dark places, because I convinced myself that that’s where I needed to go to find him. And my ego and I would pull us both out of there, into light, into safety, into love.

I know now that he’ll never come back to me. Not that I need him to, in my healthier state of self-love. For he knows he’ll never be able to give me what I need, even if I sometimes forget it. He won’t respond to, address or hear my attempts of reaching out or reminiscing, because he knows that I’ll come around and one day, once again remember he can’t love me the way that I can love myself. And that will hurt him and guilt him all over again.

When he finally left me, for the last time– emotionally, mentally, physically, psychologically– he looked me in my eyes and said, “You are a beautiful person.”

And after all of the hurt, the heartache, the mind games and the ego-pain, I felt like maybe, a small shard of my love did really get through. Maybe, after it all, a piece of me was able to reach him.

That, I will never know. But I will remember that moment forever, because it marked the first day of my next and final rescue. The only and the most important one: the rescue of myself, from my own mind. And I knew then that I would be the only one to carry myself into salvation– into love– and that I was the only one standing in my own way. And I knew then that I would be victorious. I will be my own savior. And he will be his own savior. And we will both be beautiful.

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