LOOKING UP AND WITHIN
Catchy phrases surround me. Almost everywhere I look I have some positive quote or reminder that I am indeed ok. I am loving and loveable. The universe provides exactly what I need at all times. Life loves me and I love life. Just for Today Alanon mantras are also part of this collection that abounds. I get them on my phone from a group of fellow Alanon women, I eagerly forward them to my dear friends hoping to add a little inspiration to their day. I receive them back and the exchange of these positive mantras is endless and often appreciated. When people come into my home or my business, they comment on these quotes and the general feel this good energy provides as they work their way through the maze of their day. With the quantity of these one liners, there should always be a smiley face looking back at me in the mirror. The mirror, by the way, has these quotes and prayers reminding me to wake up with a big heart-full of gratitude in case I forgot when I was getting my sleep the night before.
These quotes that I have been bathing in since I discovered Louise Hay when I was about 22 have been a parental force in my life. Louise Hay wrote many books, but my go to self help and self awareness favorite of all time was You Can Heal Your Life. This book changed my compass and allowed me the notion at this tender age to realize that my thoughts are powerful and that I actually choose them. What I think affirms what I think and therefore often affirms outcome. This was a big concept for a 22 year old very damaged young woman trying to find her way in the world with zero parental support since she was fifteen. Little did I know that this lack of foundation in my early teen years would follow me and many of my choices as I navigated onward.
Typical of 22 year olds, I thought I had it figured out after I read this one book. I then went on to discover Wayne Dyer, Your Erroneous Zones, Expressive Arts Therapy, herbal tinctures and a loose aromatherapy understanding. I also started reading books on nutrition well before the phrase Clean Eating was coined. I moved in with a man who showed stability and love and of course typical of youth and dysfunction, thought that at 24, this would be a good time to get my wild self grounded and get married. I loved being married. The notion of playing house for real, for mimicking what I remember about my own house when the appearances were those of stability and happiness. Before I learned the truth which was I had two parents who were basically bullshitting their children and really weren’t very happy with each other or themselves. Living a lie in front of your children is not a very successful formula for raising healthy ones. Though I had a very materially stable life and was well provided for, the emotional trauma of having a mother who really never liked me continues to this day in my interactions with people I am close to and people who I have employed. It is a constant job to supply myself with the necessary armor to not personalize every single thing.
For the most part I have overcome the washing machine head as I heard someone say at an Alanon meeting. But sometimes it sneaks up on me and takes over my brain like a mutiny and I am always surprised by its force in my head. Usually it is equated with a few items I can quickly check off the list so as to remind myself that I am not losing it. I can replay the sugar intake, or the four days of red wine, or the not exercising for a few days or look up the timing of mercury being in retrograde to quickly understand the spinney head. This always brings relief to me as I know that I am ok. I have done THE WORK. I never stop doing THE WORK. And I know exactly what I need to do to get back on the yellow brick road path back to home where I started rather than the quick slide down the rabbit hole to the dark abyss.
The full moon, this past full moon as a matter of fact coupled with a very stressful month in October put me into a bit of a tailspin though and I had to come to some sort of reality check or I was on my way to a health crisis for sure. I had such a great time hiking in nature in the middle of this otherwise stressful past month which gave me a taste of what astounds and grounds me. And as I had a quick visceral reactive response to a seemingly innocent conversation I had with my partner and blasted off to the gym for a serious grind on the treadmill, I realized that there was more to this then I had given any credit for. Funny how innocent conversations can trigger, but when you do THE WORK like I have done, those triggers often create a self awareness that easily brings me off the ledge and into a speedy lotus pose. So as I was blasting sprints on the treadmill escaping from my chatterhead the epiphanies began at the speed of light. My realization about the giving of myself outwardly came to my radar as I considered that since my first breast cancer diagnosis in March of 2015, I have mostly gone and been outward in my world. This coupled with my perpetual work on deep rooted abandonment issues that have permeated my life made for a recipe of wonder. No wonder I was feeling angst. I have not allowed myself the boundaries necessary to go within. I am so busy running to workouts, yoga, going to dinner, organizing parties and saying yes to almost everything coming at me, coaching my team, loving my partner and trying to stay conscious in my relationship with him so we can continue to reap the benefits of this solid and joyful union, that I have forgotten my insides. I realized that if I took just a small amount of the love and energy I put out there and kept some for me turning it back inside this would be something. Actually it is a foreign concept. Sure I have meditated and gone for contemplative walks, but usually I am trying to rally the female forces and get them to open their hearts to the abundance of light.
So I realized as I was burning it up on the treadmill that it was time to take better care of my inside self. Let alayne white take a break and invite alayne to her own party for a change. So I met my partner for lunch and asked him for the consideration of some alone time so that I could make sure that I was capable of caring for myself as much as I cared for the rest. This may seem like a fairly reasonable request, but for me it was so difficult to ask for this without feeling like I may be causing some unnecessary but real feelings of abandonment. This means that when we could be eating dinner together and sharing company I was consciously asking to be alone. Not forever just for a few days to contemplate myself. To engage my soul and reconnect with my spiritual centeredness. To ask for this small request was a huge obstacle I needed to overcome as I had to feel safe and loved in the ask and though I do feel this whole heartedly, it still strange to take the risk. This is THE WORK. The little heart palpitation in asking for something that I know I need to grow and be a more evolved woman for myself and overcoming that anyway. Like going hiking on a trail and still going despite my fear of getting lost. I needed to get lost in my ownself and feel that feeling.
Last night I started to have that feeling of what the fuck alayne, how can I miss dinner with my love? Life is short, drive over, but instead I leaned into having dinner alone and consciously being with myself. I went for a walk to the water and sat and looked at the moon and the stars. I felt the wind travel through my skin and my hair and my lungs. I took deep meditative breaths and felt a reconnection with my spirit that I have for some reason neglected. I think in all of this madness I call breast cancer, breast reconstruction, business owning, brca2 discoveries, losing my brother, father, grandmother and aunt, son going to college, divorce, leaving a marriage and a home of 20 years, breaking up the family, having a flood, buying a magic kingdom and having a mother who asks you to never contact her again because of some silly excuse to be pissed off has had its toll on me and in my effort to plow ahead, I have forgotten to go through the full grieving process.
The only analogy I can give it is when you are a caregiver for someone who is dying and your full day to day experience is this care, when they finally leave you, you have so much time to consider all of a sudden. You realize that the time you spent caring was a necessary distraction and part of the grieving process, but only the beginning of it. The rest comes after the funeral. And that is the part that is the hardest because it is the part that is the discipline in going within and allowing that to be your distraction. Grief comes in all forms and there are surely levels of it all, but the process of grieving is necessary and the only way around it is through it. So as I take some time to be in a relationship with myself to make sure that I in fact like myself enough, I challenge my core. Thankfully I have a partner who totally gets this. He allows me the space I need to understand and move through this next part of my experience of putting all of this world of cancer to rest and seeing who I have become because of it. I will look up more often this next few days and I will look within. After all it is the within that is the seed of most fruit, that precious life force that has all of that delicious energy that makes the whole fruit sweeter, or bigger or more flavorful depending on how it was grown in the first place. We often throw away the seeds or compost them. I am always amazed what sprouts from my compost pile when I just innocently throw the seeds in there for their part in the pile. I always get a surprise and in this travel back inward, I too am getting those sprouts. Just from paying attention.