My word of the year is Growth. I mean it to fill all areas of my life, not just from the perspective of my work and my business. Growth is something that the plant world does really well for the most part. If the conditions are right and the plants needs for light and water etc. are met then it will grow and align with the imprint of exactly what it is supposed to look like and how it responds and contributes to the whole ecosystem within which it grows. I think the beauty is that the same applies to humans.
It’s just that it seems so much harder for humans to find the "right" conditions that make it easy to grow and align with our true nature, our true selves. In fact, since most of us don’t know who that is exactly, the potential for growth can be quite stunted.
I am just learning how to take care of myself. A grown woman and mother of three daughters and yet taking care of myself is a difficult and alien concept. Some days are harder than others. Usually when things don’t go according to the carefully laid out plan I have in my mind of how things should unfold. Unless you live a hermit life this is to be expected living with other humans with thoughts and wills of their own—so why is it always such a shock?
My girls are so much better at taking care of their needs. They do it effortlessly I think as most children naturally do before they learn to emulate the stories of their surroundings and start to forget who they really are. Particularly girls that are taught to sacrifice their own needs in the name of responsibility and of pleasing others.
I was a “pleaser” with the general misconception that doing what others wanted me to do, contributed to my sense of being loved and of being worthy of love, and my entire self-esteem was built on that shaky foundation.
So when my girls decide that their needs do not coincide with my needs I am faced with myself and my inadequacies in the self-esteem department head on.
That's the trouble with growth—with self awareness—because you see yourself (in the moment) acting out in a way that doesn't align with who you are.
The same record comes on, and I find myself perpetuating a story that is no longer mine, even though I’m conscious enough to see the bigger picture. I still find myself lashing out things about being selfish and other words to the effect that their choices to take care of themselves somehow is to spite me. I react as if I have been assaulted personally. Lots of anger and slamming doors. I didn’t get my own way.
I am the adult, shouldn't I have my own way just as the adults in my life had theirs when I would unconsciously subjugate my needs to be a good girl and do as I was told, and then some. But the voice inside me, my intuition, my heart it is telling me that in the grand scheme of things this incident is just small stuff...unimportant except to show me a pattern that is worn out and no longer serving me.
Growth takes so much energy. Awareness of your self is the first step. Acting on this awareness is where the growth really happens.
This is where a lot of us get stuck. After all it is so so much easier to not be self-aware, to not have to choose to align with these new truths as they become obvious to you. It is so much easier to self-medicate somehow. With blame, or food, or whatever it is that we choose to numb our growing pains with, and then complicate our stories with drama. And then the guilt...mother guilt at that.. don’t get me started!
So I go to the garden, I go into nature. I cry and sob and breathe and I remind myself of who I am and that I am not alone. I remind myself of how far I have come, and I take full responsibility and ownership of the journey that has brought me here. I also recognize the gifts my girls are giving me by showing me how to take care of myself and by loving me unconditionally no matter how loudly I scream or slam the door. For facing me head on and reflecting back at me the worn out stories that need to be let go of. And finally for being there for me when I am done, exhausted and spent, with a hug and no resentment, and a reminder of how to be living truly in the moment.
And that's where Campanula comes into my awareness. Growing where I am sitting. Reminding me about all the bigger possibilities. Reminding me that I am not a victim and to look at how far I have come.
Focus on all that you have achieve instead of dwelling on all there is yet to do.
Look at all the growth! I am not the person I was even a year ago. I may look the same on the outside, but I have shed so many layers of who I am not that I scarcely recognize the reflection in the mirror. I see something better. I am starting to see myself with a love and compassion I previously did not have for myself when I was covered with blame and self-pity. Realignment. Growth. Can you hear the Campanula bells ringing?
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I know that whatever happens in my life I can roll with it all. I can feel and embrace the joy and the pain because I know they are not separate, or opposite, but are instead the two wings of the same bird, lifting me up and carrying me along.