On my “About” page on this site is this sentence: “My deepest desire is to inspire others to live a life that is free, open and enjoyable, rather than living a life that feels controlled, constricted or over-managed.”
This comes directly from my human experience. For a very long time, I felt as if I was living a life that was controlled, constricted and over-managed. For years, I was medicated to get through it all. At one time, I was taking many antidepressants while being treated by a therapist and a psychiatrist. Now, I know that this isn’t everyone’s experience. I DO know, it was mine.
I AM human…and I wish to be real, authentic and honest. I cannot offer wisdom, thoughtful writing or comment, without being authentic. And…I have my days, too. I have to remind myself that I am in this world…I am not of it.
It was only a few years ago that I was a highly functioning (federal) executive, and wife and mother to two sons and a step-son. Life brought its joyful moments, and they were few and far between (from my perspective only). I have always taken life very seriously and worked hard to hide, as much as possible, my deep suffering. Some thought they knew it well, others may have seen glimpses. I knew it ALL.
I awoke this morning feeling very tired, even though I slept reasonably well last night. I meditated, knowing that time spent in quiet listening would support a “re-start” to my day. Well…not so much. I realized about mid-morning, that I was feeling a deep sadness. I did not feel fear, although I suppose some would say there is a lot to fear in the current milieu. This was clearly sadness. I just couldn’t wrap my head around all of what is happening in our world today. In fact, the only word that came to mind was “unconscionable.” So many things simply do not add up or make any sense.
As an empath, I often find it challenging to know whether what I am feeling are my feelings or the feelings of others. I am highly sensitive and find that retreating from a lot of what we are all exposed to daily, is essential to maintaining my health and well-being. So today was a banner day for those feelings that I couldn’t reconcile or otherwise understand.
I have always found the beach to be a healing place. It is a place where I can be still, listen and find quiet calm within while in the presence of a very powerful and beautiful force of nature. I went there today, seeking that peace, solace and calm.
The lovely space I met just a week or two ago was nowhere to be found. There were lots of people. The sun was bright, the breezes light and the noise level higher than I had experienced in many months. In all its beauty, the noise and relatively small crowds were just too much. I lasted about an hour. I am happy to see that so many people love and enjoy the beach so much that a beautiful day like this one wasn’t to be missed!
I didn’t leave with anger, frustration or anything like that. I simply honored the fact that the space is for everyone…and just not for me today. The short drive home provided time to reflect. I spent some of that time looking at the sadness and seeking to understand what was at its core. And even this experience had something for me. Finding the salve for my wounds and hurting places within is changing…and likely for good reason. I am grateful for the ocean, the sand, and the noise of people enjoying it all today as well.
As I reflected, I came to see more clearly what was contained in the sadness. What I feel pervades nearly everything. Our planet – everything living thing on it, people, animals; our safety, access to health care, clean water and food; those whose homes have been demolished, and who have nothing left. They’ve lost loved ones, a lifetime of memories and joyful experiences. It all is so hard to feel some days. Today has been one of those.
I know that many have struggled with the changes that we are all facing. I have found it to be more or less challenging as well. I do know that we are resilient. We are individually powerful and deeply loving, compassionate people. I feel that we will navigate these very choppy waters with all of the love that is within us. We will find a way forward that loves, honors and respects each other, regardless of our differences. In fact, we will begin to appreciate and see the gifts in those differences, for everyone has something to offer.
When I got home, I found this quote:
Sometimes surrender means giving up trying to understand and becoming comfortable with not knowing.
Surrender…yes, there it is again. “Becoming comfortable with not knowing,” creates space for more love and healing to enter.
We are not weak, we are sensitive.
We are not lost, we are wounded.
We are not troublemakers, we seek only to be seen, and heard.
We are human.
May we all surrender to love. May we all pray for healing and in so doing, envision ourselves holding hands while we navigate these times together.
Empaths: Dr. Judith Orloff; http://www.drjudithorloff.com/empath-support-community Here are some quizzes that you might find useful.
Meditation: 21-Day Meditation Experience (underway now); Hope in Uncertain Times