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Look back, but only to see how far you've come

Photos Credit: http://flowerhillfarm.blogspot.com/2010/08/captivating-chrysalis-curtain-rising.html
To be honest, this is the first time I've ever thought to look back over a decade. I mean I've looked back over the last ten years of my life, but there is something special about ending a decade and beginning a new one - and being aware of it. Maybe it never really dawned on me because I didn't used to care about a whole lot, or maybe it's because from your 20s to your 30s you actually become an adult. Its exciting to think about the next decade and how much more I will learn, grow and evolve.

Looking back to 2010, I was 24 years old and thought I had my life together. I was "confident" and in complete denial that I was living my life in toxic chaos. Of course I had lots of highs, but I had some very dark lows. I lived in a adorable "village" with my best friend (we're talking childhood friend, a sister from another mister). I was also in complete puppy love with a drug addict and fell hard into the depths of my co-dependant relationship with him. I was a slowly becoming a full time student at my local community college, learning from still some of the best teachers I had. I really thought I was living the dream and had it all figured out. It's interesting what we tell ourselves while we are just trying to survive.



Not realizing that my unresolved trauma, anger and sadness was slowly poisoning me and was leaking all over my life. I would find so much comfort in my emotional eating and would look forward to the moments where I could secretly binge on fast food until I felt sick. It was something that was all mine, that I could "control". It made me feel euphoric when I could order mass amounts of greasy food, watch some mindless TV, and eat until I wanted to throw up. My other favorite way to self-medicate was drinking. By the time I was 24 I started to come out of my "blacking out" phase. I am hugging this young girl right now, she was in so much pain. You would think the embarrassment that follows a night of not remembering would be enough to motivate me to snap out of something so damaging OR watching family members be taken by alcohol, but like I said - I truly did not care about myself. My whole life I was surrounded by alcohol, I learned that this can help you forget, not deal with the messed up stuff life is throwing at me, and have fun with a false confidence. It was too tempting and I just didn't care about how it could end. This is why I am so thankful for the love I had (and have) in my life. Unconditional love is a true beacon of light. In our darkest moments, if we can just see that small glimpse of light, there is hope.

Once my niece was born, it was as almost as if new life had been breathed into me. Although I struggled with family events, I didn't want to let my anger and pain keep me from being the Aunt I knew I could be. I also had dreams of teaching. If I was always a hot mess how could I be an inspiration to these kids?! Luckily, I always had yoga to come back to. The many forms it has presented in my life has truly save me in its own way. These new motivations and the desire to expand my knowledge really helped me get out of this dark hole I was in. The next 10 years I would stumble SEVERAL times. I continued to get back up, and just find a new way. One small step at a time truly does turn into great leaps.

It wasn't until 4 years later, I decided to say YES and make a major life change. I chose to move across the country to Texas. Life begins at the end of your comfort zone - a beautiful phrase on a magnet that my bff gave to me as a going away gift - got me through my transition and continues to ring through my head when fear tries to prevent me from taking action on my goals. I have written about this several times, and will continue to do so over and over BUT making that scary jumped changed my life in the most beautiful way. The past 6 years I have grown into a person I truly love. I realized I was an artist here, I met the love of my life here, I became a mom here, I got my bachelors degree here, I got married here, I'm having my first pregnancy here! I've faced my traumas here, I truly started a new path of healing here, I became a vegan here. I am the healthiest physically and emotionally I have ever been in my life! The ride has been very bumpy, and there have been several moments where all I have wanted to do was curl up in a ball and just give up. It all kind of came back to, what woman do I want to be? How do I want to inspire my niece & nephew, my stepson, my future students, my partner, my family? If I put the best version of myself into the world that will vibrate out all over, and that's what feels best in my heart.




I would not change one single thing.  I know I'll still stumble, and have struggles, that's what this whole life experience is about. One of the most valuable things I learned is how to move through these challenges with compassion and grace. I love who I am today, and I'm excited for the next 10 years. To see where that takes me and what kind of person I will be when I'm 44. What kind of people I raised, the students who I taught and inspired. If it wasn't for my dark moments I would not have gone on the path that led me here. With a person who manages anxiety, I honestly understand the worries we get caught up in thinking about the future. What could happen, how can I prevent it? Stressing over things we really have no control over. It's also very challenging to face our fears (big and small) or to even look back at our past. The choice to forget about it seems to be much more simple - honestly it does cause much more damage even if you don't seem it in that moment. This new year, don't get caught up in the "I wish I would have done this" and "this year I'm going to do this, this, this, this" leaving yourself set up for failure. Instead: reflect on how far you've come, set intentions for your goals that feel good in your heart - not what the outside world says is right, and be present in this moment. Have you spent some time reflecting this past year, or even this past decade? What are you choosing to celebrate in your life? We would love to hear!


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