Ok, so the shit has hit the fan and you are in a mess – emotionally, physically, spiritually, financially, and/or mentally. The only thinking happening is panic induced:
“Help. I need help.”
“What the Fuck – really? Now?”
“I don’t even know where to begin.”
“I am so tired of feeling attacked.”
Hit the pause button of your thoughts. Take an extra s l o w and d e e p breath – hold it for a moment – then release it slowly and completely. Make noise, or not. Do it again and allow a mantra to enter your mental space, such as peace and calm. Use it on the inhale and let the exhale take away as much stuckness as you are able to muster. Do it again for as long as you want, knowing that your breath, is your life force. Intentional breathing can help you co-create your homeostasis, your balance. Your body wants, and needs, you to pitch in and help out here.
Use this space you have given yourself, tiny as it may seem, to keep moving forward; to co-create a mental space that will provide a foundation for healing the shit-space you feel taking over right now. This is a critical mass moment – consider yourself in the ICU – cancel any non-urgent appointments and obligations to invest time in yourself. Now it is Your Turn as Guru Seth Godin, would say.
Too often we fail to do this – I know, I used to be the master of busy. It was far easier to show up for someone else than it was to show up for myself. I let life happen to me rather than taking charge. I deferred and procrastinated the ICU matters of my life until someone else made the choices for me or until the situation had deteriorated to such an extent that my options were severely limited. This is not Self-care. This is not, as a recent guru put it, Devotion to Self.
Have you ever been in a hard yoga pose? It takes an enormous amount of attention to hold that position. There is no choice but to be fully present in your body – the vehicle for movement, momentum, changing directions. This latest shit storm? It is your hard yoga pose. I know, it stinks and is terribly uncomfortable in all ways, but I am suggesting you “sit with your shit.” Being grounded and present and in your body is the first step to creating the life you desire.
I know you will find fertilizer for new growth and potential far beyond your imagined limitations of today.
Last, but not least, head for the nearest yoga class, immerse yourself in yourself, and find seeds of faith, hope, strength, courage, resiliency, wisdom, and love for your Self.
This is part 1 of a 7 part series on Self-Care.
Oh Christmas Tree
Visited her family one
Along came Casey
Yippee, a car trip!
Lots of new friends
Wooden table leg
Resembles a tree
Lifting his leg comes naturally
My friend defeated
Christmas joy extinguished
Christmas joy triumphed?
Ha, ha, ha
Ho, ho, ho
Look what present Casey gave us!
Christmas joy celebrated
Funny family story, 20 years old
Ha, ha, ha!
Ho, ho, ho!
Water and Air
My friend looks thirsty
No thanks wooshes out with a breath of
carbonated and sweetened
When she was 3 and 4 her grandfather
held her head under
her eyes wide open begging for
Shitty game pappy
rape me, drown me
terror to silence
too much water
not enough air
Grown up now
learning to drink
learning to breathe
Remembering and healing
the elements of Earth
vital to life
I believe setting up intentions early in my experience has helped me to trust that the journey is unfolding in the way that is most beneficial for me. If you think intentions are helpful, feel free to use these as a guide and make them your own. I have modified them a few times, so visit them regularly.
I intend that I honor truth and awareness as a first step to healing. And engage my Divine wisdom and discernment in the process. Healing from suppressed memories is more common that you might imagine. It is a normal reaction of our brain to hold back pain and events that we are not yet capable of working through. Many of us have hurts and wounds that come up to the surface when we are ready to move through those old experiences to heal. I believe we cannot heal from that which we are not consciously aware of, however some details are not required to heal. I intend:
- That I remember only that which is necessary to heal on all levels: physically, emotionally, mentally, spiritually, and sexually.
- That I visit each memory only as long as is necessary to heal on all levels.
- That if any part of my healing can directly impact others in a healing way, bring us together.
- That my healing serves the collective in an amplified way that serves the highest good of all, especially in regard to the sexual imbalances in our world. The Ripple Effect with direct, expanded intention.
- That I begin living life from the healed part of my heart, mind, body, and soul.
- That I find complete and total forgiveness.
- That radical and complete healing is my experience.
- That I always remember Love.
I vomited up disappointment tonight.
I realized my HUGE fear of disappointing people.
This fear has driven me to overcommit, over-deliver, and please, please, please at the expense of my health, my self-care, my well-being.
It was an energetic vomiting of being told not to be a disappointment by my grandpa. The mental tape, literally in his voice, was “Don’t disappoint me Angie.”
I remembered all the ways I feel disappointed by others and all the ways I feel I disappoint others. And I saw all the situations I put myself into that are impossible for me to come out on top, so I disappoint everyone involved.
God it hurt. I cried out. I sobbed. I yelled. I rocked back and forth holding my gut – the home of this fear for so many years.
During this experience, I had the thought that I should reach out to a friend because it was one of those dark moments that good friends want to help you through. One of those moments that a friend wishes she would have been called on when she hears about it later. As I started scrolling through my telephone contacts, I asked myself, “What do I want from someone right now?” The answer was to be held and rocked; to be assured that I will get better. I wanted my mom. Since calling my mom was not an option, I kept scrolling – looking for the friend that would support me best in this moment.
I didn’t get very far before I realized that the no one could be my mom in that moment more than my mom. Asking someone to try to fill her shoes would be unfair. And, I knew, with Divine clarity, that my perfect mom friend resided within me. I didn’t need my mother; I could reach out and hold and rock that child within that needed loved and reassured better than anyone else. I literally held and rocked myself, whispering the nurturing, loving words that I longed to hear in that moment. I invited God to also wrap arms of love and protection around me. I cried and keened with that hurting child as a mother and as a friend. And it was perfect. There was no disappointment, just love and comfort.
In the end, the message was (and is) “Angie, you are enough. In every moment, you are enough.” There is not much room for disappointment when we are enough.
This is an invitation to search for all that you are looking for within yourself, be your own witness. Invite God into the experience and know that you hold all the keys to your own healing. Love yourself the way that no one else can love you – deeply and profoundly – this is where you find God and where you find yourself.
-Angela Rae Clark, 2006 TYIG Seedling still finding her way in the Inner Garden world. Angela is sharing part of her 2011 experience of healing from emerging memories of rape, torture and trauma involving the grandfather that is mentioned in this article. She is immensely grateful for the TYIG tools and experiences to draw upon. Deb, Diane and the TYIG friends are a constant inspiration and source of love and support. Angela offers others support and healing through her healing arts practice, The Ki Inside. http://www.TheKiInside.com
Journal Entry / May 20, 1996
My dream last night was of me as a little girl in the car and angry about where we were going. I couldn’t tell anyone why, but I was terrified of visiting this place.
The scene changes in my dream: the little girl took my hand and led me to a wall where there was a puzzle hanging. It was a puzzle representing my life. All the events and people I had experienced were in this picture. There was a general sense of chaos visible and palpable when I looked at this puzzle. I noted there was one piece missing in the lower right hand quadrant.
Then she motioned for me to lean over and examine something in her hand as she strained to lift it higher: It was a puzzle piece. Without saying a word she expressed the importance of what was on that puzzle piece. She was right, it was important. I looked in her eyes and nodded, acknowledging her wisdom and my understanding. Then she carefully placed it in the puzzle on the wall. In an instant the chaotic energy that had been overlaying the puzzle vanished. There was a thread from that piece to every person and event portrayed in the puzzle. Instantly, everything made perfect sense. My entire being resonated with relief and freedom with this new information.
The dream is crystal clear this morning except what was on the single puzzle piece.
Journal Entry / December 25, 2010
Fourteen years of this dream and I finally know what is on the puzzle piece. The chaos in my life is gone, seemingly evaporated overnight. I am still, very still. There is an understanding of myself that I have been longing for my whole adult life. I now have memories that my brain chose to bury at the age of 3. I don’t know where these memories will take me, but my physical body is in a state of relief. I am acutely aware that my body has been spending enormous amounts of energy holding these memories inside. The freedom and liberation is immense.
Journal Entry / April 10, 2012
As each memory emerges, I experience a state of shock. I consciously navigate acceptance and integration of this new information into my story. Reliving the trauma is difficult. But I recognize that I cannot heal from that which I do not remember. How can I heal the wounds of rape if I can’t acknowledge that it happened? Awareness and acceptance have been critical to navigating the storms of the past as I pick up and hold the broken debris. These relics lead me to a deeper understanding of myself. Healing and the ability to choose differently emerge from the brokenness.
I am continually amazed that everything I did before seeking professional help was exactly what the experts are guiding me through now, 17 months after the first memory emerged. I am grateful that I had such a connection to my innate wisdom. I have been guided efficiently through this journey. God has provided the people, resources and support that I needed at exactly the right moment – all I had to do was ask.
I believe that as we each commit to healing our wounds, whatever they are, that we create a healing ripple of energy into our immediate family and friends that spreads out over the Earth. I visualize that healing energy rippling out across the world frequently – some days it is what keeps me going. However, most days the ability to move forward and continue to heal, come from the inner freedom and healing that I have already experienced. The healed part of my soul reaches out to the wounded places and beckons me inside.
I have a dream of healthy, joyful and whole children that don’t ever learn what the word abuse means. It is not in their vocabulary because it is not in their dictionary. How can this happen? By having healthy, joyful and whole people raising them and caring for them. At home, school, church, daycare and the homes of family and friends. What can I do? Just one person – can I make a difference? My healing has to happen first, then I can share my story and help others to heal. It starts here, in my home, in my heart.
I have felt fractured all day. I can’t connect the basic dots of where I need to be or where I need to go to be efficient about it. Normally, I am all about efficiency.
I feel like I have one thousand lose ends in my life that I would love to clip off and have a fresh slate. That is my goal. Can I get my life in order like that? Based on the last few months, the answer is no. I had a hypnotherapy session today. In an effort to nurture myself, I also had an energy healing session and it was good. I did feel reluctant to go into the hypno-state, afraid of what I would find there. I think I totally chicken shitted the hour away. Where is my courage today?
I would love to have a good long hug tonight. I want to be held by someone that would let me draw on their strength and collect as many hugs as needed. I need some reassurance that I am going to be better than ok on the other end. I feel hollow and empty. My friend D and I hung out for a bit. She clearly does not know what to do for me except medicate me. It was ok with me. We loaded up on some junk food and wine and mindless TV. I think I could be a junkie of any of the above if I allowed myself to go down that path.
The moon is beautiful, lending strength and courage to me. I see a child’s face reflected in the moon tonight. I wish I could sleep outside with her.