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Even though we’ve all heard “true beauty is found within,” I’m starting to realize I’ve never believed it.
I did believe it for other people, but not for myself. I never realized it was supposed to apply to me too. Listen, it was only during the plague that “self-love” became something popular to encourage.
That was not on the list four years ago when I worked for a corporate dental office. Then again, we are also now realizing that valuing ourselves makes it difficult to survive in our current work culture.
It’s abusive, especially if you’re naïve like I was. I thought a good leader was someone who could focus on things and get them done efficiently.
It is. A truly good leader is someone who can focus, get things done efficiently, and make sure their team is fulfilled and supported. They are supposed to make the right decisions and admit when they make a mistake.
I remember one of my managers sitting across from me and watching a colleague just f*cking harass me over and over again. I was in a hostile domestic environment at the time and was well-trained to keep my head down. Her intention was to hurt me and make me lose my confidence. I didn’t know the motive, but I had learned early motive never really matters. My manager took me into her office, sat me down, and told me I was being bullied. She then went on to say she would talk to the other woman and told me to stand up for myself more.
I had also learned young that standing up for yourself in the presence of a manipulative person offered no real results. The coworker would only respond to who she saw as an authority figure. I also didn’t really understand the concepts of boundaries and self-worth. My manager was paid more to handle that kind of stuff, including managing conflict with difficult people. In theory, she was paid more to make sure operations were done smoothly and put out fires when they popped up.
Psychology is slowly starting to coil around how trauma affects people in the whole scope of their lives. Connections are being made about how frequent trauma in early development years can wire our young brains into becoming cortisol seeking junkies who only feel safe in high states of stress or influence. Doctors are realizing that having their patients fill out a quick ACE Score Test can help them diagnose with more clarity and empathy.
All of this is going in a good direction. I’m going to school for social work, and I’m still amazed that I know the mitochondria is the powerhouse of the cell but didn’t realize that there is a Universal Human Rights Treaty and that the United States likely signed it like Ariel signed her voice away.
Kind of like when we sign the paperwork for places of employment with a spirit of goodwill at the beginning.
Then again, I didn’t know how cool Marco Polo was back then either. Seriously, he was the Han Solo of history. Also, if we can replace statues of Christopher Columbus with Marco Polo, the surrounding environment will increase in value and aesthetics. We’ve grown up with a lot of false conditioning. Luckily, we are the generation with the literal world at our fingertips. Can you imagine how much our ancestors would kill to be living this life?
We are powerful, and with power comes responsibility.
Here’s the scary part.
When you’re an adult, you get to choose or deny responsibility to things. You get to craft your own world. You get to design your own life. There will be suffering, and there will be obstacles. Every day will be a mess of good and bad moments, and you get to judge what you’re going to keep and going to throw away. How you do that is also up to you.
Freedom can be overwhelming. Justice doesn’t follow the morals of humanity; it is a tool of the universe. Nature is neither malignant or vengeful. So it is above as it is below. We are a small voice in the universe, but a big voice in the universe of our minds. We can master our mind, and the first step is studying the thoughts that run through our mind.
Journaling has helped me find patterns in how I think. Releasing negative feelings requires me to dance or sing or do art. Connecting with the world requires me to trust, and without trust in myself and my worth…it’s hard to lend that trust to others.
With all of it I am getting better. I also had a true adult tantrum today because my kids didn’t get dressed when I told them to (about six times over two hours) and because I was trying to order groceries, do laundry, check to see how my job search was going, and clean the living room because my house is an absolute trash dumpster.
I’m starting to breathe more quickly just thinking about all of it. My kids are young, eight and six, and they were going to their dad’s house for five days. I recognize that my anxiety and heartbreak over losing them for a little while added a shadow on all my emotions. I also know that in the long scheme of things, it doesn’t matter.
I hate saying goodbye and cussing at the same time. I was running around the car, snarling, in the black bathrobe and barefoot. I could have easily been seen as a crazy person. I was not in my body; I didn’t feel the cold of the end of winter. I was in my head because I didn’t want to feel the heaviness of goodbye. This was not a good transition day for me.
But it was just one bad time in weeks of good times. While negative and heavier, it does not block out all the good goodbyes we had. We have to say goodbye more often, so there are more risks of a sh*tty takeoff.
My emotions were real. They were valid. I didn’t say or do anything unforgiveable.
I’ll still send them apologies over chat or text because I want them to know I’m not over here still mad at them. I used to do those things because I wanted to reassure myself they still loved me after lashing out with such negative emotions. I will be loved. The love never left. The love will never leave. If you’re building a healthy love and a good relationship with your family, it’s like the “Millennium Falcon.” That love can take some hits, look ugly sometimes, but you can always depend on it getting you through whatever situation you find yourself in, even if it’s a belt of asteroids.
Learn how to trust yourself and your feelings, and you’ll find it easier to understand how precious you are to others. I often look at my children and feel delight with a deep ache of disbelief that I can feel so much love and joy. It’s hard to imagine myself being seen in the same light, but it’s getting better.
Plus, I don’t seem to have the same feelings about my insecurities. I can believe all day that people look upon me with irritation and judgement.
The truth is, everyone is lost in their head too, battling the demons that keep them distracted from life. We are all just creatures trying to live together on a planet spiraling through space with as much peace and harmony as we can muster. The ones who seem to have cruel intentions live in either crueler minds or lack the ability to see how much hatred they have for themselves.
Plus, the easiest test of cruelty versus evil is mocking the behavior. People who are being cruel often take offence, and the people who lean toward evil can laugh along with you. The latter is…quite a feeling.
I belong here. So do you. We’re here to learn, giggle, and find the healthiest ways we can to cope with suffering and obstacles. The world is so big, and there’s always going to be a place for you and I. Listen to the colors of the wind. Sing with the mountains.
Connect with Earth and your spirit to find your purpose so you can be anchored and live well. Take care of yourself and figure out where your values and honor lie.
I’m going to devote my life to doing the same.