Tag Archives: depression

Experiencing Life!

Over the last week, I’ve been on a wild adventure to Australia! It’s so amazing here! I worried about the 15 hour flight but I managed it alright. I meditated, read, listened to music, and slept most of the way. I was also sneezing a lot. When we got to Australia, I was sneezing and my nose running almost nonstop so I had to pop antihistamine medication. I was just a freaking nose of a wreck! Knowing I have severe allergies and even allergies back home, I wondered if this was even a good idea! I worried I would not adapt to the environment here in Australia.

However, after two days, the owner of a cottage we rented, told me to try the local honey. She said the local honey should help with allergies. I had no idea where I would get some local honey, but she offered to get me some. She brought over 1/3 cup of honey. I took a couple of spoonfuls. It didn’t work right away. I went to bed tired and still sneezing. I also took another antihistamine because I didn’t know if the honey would work. The next day, I woke up to no sneezing and no running nose! I took another large spoonful of honey just for good measure. Literally, over night, walla, I went from sneezing around everything to nothing! I was so amazed at this wonderful turn around! I didn’t have to carry boxes of tissue paper with me everywhere. Hehe.

One day, I was walking through the forest looking for wallabies, koalas, and birds when I suddenly was very emotional. I’m a very emotional person, and highly sensitive. I was filled with gratitude that I had healed from my mental disorders. Years ago, as many of my readers know, I had very severe depression, anxiety, PTSD, and a dissociative disorder. I was a mess. My life revolved around medications, therapy, and doctor’s appointments. I was on so many medications, I was like a zombie. There’s no way I would have gone on a trip like this. I was also very fearful. Just the flight alone, I would have had to be medicated with extra anti-anxiety pills. I had child alter personalities that would have presented and been very scared and crying. People would look at me strangely and wonder why I was acting this way. I just didn’t go many places during a very dark period of my life. Anyway, I suddenly said to my husband, “I’m so glad I healed because I can take trips like this now!” It’s not that I couldn’t experience life, it just took a lot more effort, and it was very stifled.

It was many years ago that I got better, but I still marvel and am amazed at the wonders of my new life. Since I got better, I’ve taken many trips around the U.S. I went to Canada one summer, and now we’re in Australia. What’s next? Oh we’re definitely coming back here again. Two weeks is just not enough time to take it all in but just the experience of being here, taking in new sights, experiencing another culture, and way of life has been absolutely exhilarating. The more I take in life, the more I experience life, the more I want to take in life and the more I want to experience it! Life is truly amazing and it’s a wonderful gift. I love myself by taking in more life. I intend to make the rest of the years of my life, the best years of my life!

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New Year, New Choices

Today, while walking down the street, I saw someone who looked like one of my former Psychiatrists. I smiled as i walked by the person and inwardly felt a great sense of wonder and gratitude as I recalled all that I had overcome. It’s been about 7 years since I took my last psychotropic medication. I used to take antipsychotics, antidepressents, antianxiety medications, including Adderall, a stimulant! I was a huge mess! I took these prescribed medications for nearly two decades. I was a typical mental patient, I had a Case Manager, and I also had Severe Mental Illness status due to numerous suicide attempts.

Today, I’m an entirely different person. I’m no longer plagued by debilitating anxiety, triggers, depression, and suicidal ideation. It was a long road but I am happy to be where I am today. I was like a zombie back then, though. Now, I just blissed out on meditation and positive energy! I had someone tell me that I probably wasn’t really crazy (and I wasn’t), but that I was just misunderstood. I looked at him oddly because he has no idea where I used to be. It’s easy to understand this mentality because I am not who I used to be, at all.

Over the years, I faced my fears, I faced my trauma, I faced my feelings, I learned skills training, and did lots of grief and processing work to get to where I am today. I am not saying that everyone is going to do it the way I did it, but this is how I did it for me. A huge part of it was learning to love myself, talk therapy, meditation, writing, and also letting go of lots of fears.
There’s nothing to be ashamed of if you are taking any type of medication that helps you to function. Don’t let that trip you up. I know it bothered me for a very long time. Not only that, but I was expected to be on the psychotropics for the rest of my life! Well, I’m not on them and I’m just fine. I’m not suffering from depression, anxiety, PTSD or any other mental illness symptoms. I’m just me.

I’ve always been quiet and reserved. I’m very introspective and like to daydream. I don’t do life the way other people do it, and there’s nothing wrong with my version of reality. I’m a very sensitive person and sometimes this is mistaken as weakness or weak willed. I’m not that either. I have a tender heart and have no intention of changing it. I’m not going to toughen up, I’m not going to grow thicker skin, I’m going to keep on being gentle, kind and sweet, especially to me! Loving yourself is the greatest gift you can give to yourself and is the beginning to creating a new you, a new life, and new possibilities. Love yourself!

This year, I’m planning to release my second book. (My first book is called, “Dear Sophia, Love Yourself!”) It’s going to have more details than my first one, and will be about my spiritual awakening as I was healing from mental illness. It will be about overcoming a lot of fears, learning to meditate, and use metaphysical tools, like crystals, for my healing. Yes, it will be a lot of woo-woo stuff, and I’m here to tell you it’s not crazy; it’s empowering and liberating! I’m excited for the next phase of my journey, and the positive things I’m bringing into life this year.

This all represents personal choices that I made over the years to assist in my healing by changing my thoughts about illness, learning to master myself, and live consciously every minute. Sometimes I do have ups and downs which is the nature of human life, I just don’t stay down. I learn my lessons and get back up. There’s no shame and blame, I am responsible for what I do with this precious gift of life I’ve been given. Happy new year everyone!

Dental Woes

Today’s blog is in support of mental health awareness month!  I recently went to the dentist to get a crown.  I have a love/hate relationship with dentists.  I love to have my teeth looking nice and shiny but I know over the years I have had very poor dental care.  Some of my dental problems stem from neglect growing up that continued into my adulthood.  I also didn’t care for my teeth because I was not always mentally aware that I even needed to!  I was very severely mentally ill for a while.  I took Wellbutrin, Zoloft or others, Zyprexa or other antipsychotics, Adderall and Armour thyroid.  I was on some heavy duty medications!   I had a steady cocktail of psychotropics that involved two antidepressants, an antipsychotic, a stimulant and my thyroid medication.  I was like a zombie basically.

When I went to the dentist, it always because I was in some dental pain, I would not intentionally seek out dental care otherwise.   On all of the forms, at the dentist office, they ask if you are now or ever been treated for a psychiatric disorder.  I always answered truthfully.  I could never figure out why they needed to know this.  They even asked if you had ever been in a psychiatric hospital.  Why do they need to know this?  What difference does it make?  I need my teeth fixed.  They’d even want to know the dates you were hospitalized.  I was always a bit embarrassed to admit all the meds I was taking and the different hospitalizations.

There came a time, when I was no longer on psychotropic medications.  I was healing.  I didn’t need them anymore.  I didn’t even have a psychiatrist.  I was still in therapy but I was well into recovery.  I had some dental pain so I scheduled a dental appointment.  I didn’t have a regular dentist so I had to call around to find one on my plan who could see me ASAP.  I found one, they took the xrays and assessed what was going on in my mouth.  I needed a lot of work done and I was in horrific pain.

However, the dentist saw that I had been a psychiatric patient.  She asked about why I wasn’t on medications.  I told her I didn’t need them anymore.  She said I had to get clearance from a psychiatrist before I could have the dental work done.  I was beside myself.  I told her I didn’t even have a psychiatrist, and sometimes it can take more than a month to get in with one!  She informed me there’s a special place for people like me to get dental help.   People like me?  People with former mental illness or someone you think is not in their right mind because they have a history of mental illness?

I still get sad when I recall this story because this is the plight of people with mental illness.  They get looked at funny or judged and misunderstood.  People with a mental illness are still people, they are worthy of dignity and respect from all health care providers.   No matter what healing modality you are serving, remember these people are special, they are sensitive, and need your services.  I went to another dentist.  I also found a psychiatrist who gave me clearance for the dental treatment.  She did offer an anxiety medication that is commonly prescribed for people, whether they have mental illness or not, who fear seeing the dentist.

Believe it or not, I do not have major depression with psychotic features anymore.  I do not have post traumatic disorder anymore.  People do heal.   There’s no reason to treat someone as if they are going to be mentally ill for the rest of their lives just because they had a mental illness at one time.  Even if I did have a mental illness, there’s no reason to treat me like I’m a freak, or crazy, or like I’m just a lost cause.  I healed.

Conscious Living

Years ago, I was in a support group for people who had suffered various childhood traumas.  I had severe depression, anxiety, and post traumatic stress disorder.   Frequently, we’d all share how we spiraled down due to the negative voices going on inside.  One woman, called the voices, “The committee.”  The committee would call her names.  The committee would say she’s ugly, not trying hard enough, a failure, dirty, embarrassing, unlovable, evil, unworthy, and so on.  We all were fighting our own negative messages.   To a certain extent, everyone has to fight negativity, even those who don’t have a mental illness or have not been abused.  We each have a shadow side to contend with.

Since I have healed from my mental illness, I have learned to live consciously, and  set up a new committee in my head.  This committee tells me to keep going when I feel like giving up.  This committee reminds me I am loved, I am beautiful, worthy, and I am strong when I start to feel otherwise or life is getting me down.  This is the beauty of living consciously, I set my own messages and I disregard any that do not agree with me nor serve my highest good.  Any messages now, that brings me down, they’re instantly tossed away.  In doing so, I don’t spiral down.  I use the positive committee, instead, to spiral up!

This is the essence of conscious living whether you are struggling with mental health issues, negative influences or messages from relationships and society in general.  There is negativity all around, but I don’t let it bring me down, instead I consciously choose where my thoughts will go, because thoughts direct our actions.    It means I’m choosing where I go, who I spend my time with, what programs on TV that lift me up and which ones take me down.  It’s choosing what I eat, where I live, and what I breathe!  There clearly are negative influences in this world and then there are the lifegiving ones.  I choose the lifegiving ones that support me, my lifestyle, my personality, and quirks.  Remember, there is always a choice to react to negativity or respond with grace and compassion.

So when the dark clouds come, and sometimes they do, I listen to my new committee, who I sometimes call my higher self, my inner self or soul.  I listen to the voices that give hope, life supporting and ultimately leads to my freedom from darkness, and into the light.  I spiral up, instead of down.    Another aspect of conscious living, is trusting in my heart.    When I’m sad and feeling unlovable and unloved, I place my hand on my heart.  I feel it beating, and tune into it  The heart knows a lot more than my mind.  My heart’s message is, “You are loved.” “You are worthy.” “ You are strong.”  “You are enough!”  “Love yourself!”  As I love myself, I spiral up even higher!  Live consciously by loving yourself, and trusting your heart.

The Good Years Outnumber The Bad Years

Many years ago, a good friend told me, “Sophia, someday, your good years are going to outnumber the bad years.” I had no idea what it would look like but I looked forward to the day. The measure for me was that the first 18 years of my life were hell, so I figured after I turned 36, they would start to get better. However, by then, I had full blown major depression and PTSD, and there didn’t seem to be any end in sight. It took me many more years of healing before I finally saw the good years outnumber the bad ones. Sometimes I lost hope, and I forgot about what she said. I just didn’t even want to try anymore. I’d give up, but then a spark of hope would get me going again.

During those years of trying to overcome my past, I had no idea what I was reaching for. I thought maybe I just didn’t want to be depressed. I didn’t know what true happiness looked like. I thought maybe I didn’t want PTSD but I didn’t know what exactly was the alternative? When you have been living with a condition for a long time, it can easily seem like it’s been this way since forever and it’s never going to end. Time doesn’t really heal all wounds, but after a while, our perspectives do change, for better or worse. No one really knows what another person is going through unless they’ve been exactly in the same place and feel the exact same way. We all do have pain and suffering in common but everyone deals with their issues from their points of view, their own life experiences, and sometimes other people just cannot go there with us.

This is why it’s important to let love, compassion, and patience be your guide with loved ones if they’re going through something that you don’t understand, or you think they should be able to snap out of it. It took me decades to reach the other side or to finally get to the point where my good years did in fact outnumber the bad years. Have a little faith and trust in the process. Eventually, I did heal from my past, the depression, and PTSD, too.  For years, I took different psychotropics to manage my illnesses.  I no longer take any medications except one for an underactive thyroid.

Sometimes you’ll have a bad moment, but don’t think it’s going to last.  Or it could be a bad week, month, year, or even a decade or two.   Life really does change.  People do change.  Don’t ever give up. Keep hope alive.   Love yourself!

Looking Within

It’s not always easy to look within. Sometimes I would rather not see or know what is hidden deep within, but I have a natural introspective and curiosity bent. A few years ago, I began a regular meditation practice because I wanted relief from anxiety and peace of mind. I got a whole lot more! I realized the areas of my life where I was faltering, I saw where I could improve but most importantly I learned acceptance. Prior to this, I was just angry, depressed, and confused. I blamed my parents for my f**ked up life. I blamed the cards I had been dealt. I blamed the people who had hurt me. I blamed everyone for the direction of my life and could not see a way out the darkness and confusion. I had no idea that I held the key to my own happiness. I didn’t know I could choose my own destiny. I thought I would just spend the rest of my life coping, struggling and surviving rather than thriving and living life to the fullest by my own will.

I realize not everyone is willing to look within. If I looked at just the external circumstances of my life, everything looked rather bleak. I was just a bad person with bad karma, and nobody loved me or cared about me. Yet, taking a peek on the inside of me, seeing that my heart hurt, yet had a lot of love to give was a bit of a shock. I could hardly believe that inside of me was a wounded little girl in need of love, acceptance, and compassion. This was a good starting point for me to turn my life around. It was a nice starting point to see where things had gone wrong or I had come to believe I was unlovable, unworthy, and dejected. It was an excellent place to begin to love myself. The more I loved and accepted that little girl, the more my love expanded to all of me, and the more I began to heal all the broken places within.

I’m very thankful I had the courage to look within. From outward appearances, I thought I would see just a dark and lifeless soul, but instead I met the loving, peaceful, and radiant woman I’ve become today. I had to go deep within to bring her out though. It’s not for the faint of heart, but it’s a beautiful gift to give to yourself, the gift of your true self. Look within, you’ll see the light that’s been hidden, you’ll find the true person under neath to accept, love and embrace. This is the person before you were wounded, the one before you were given a label, before you put on the masks, the one before you were told who you are supposed to be or how to look, your true essence of self. I always love and accept myself now.

Seasons Change

I keep going back to the turning points in my life. I turn a corner and I realize there’s yet another corner to turn! I build my momentum and excitement to get to the next corner. Sometimes there’s a huge celebration, other times, I’m thinking, “why did I bother?” Every time I think I’m enlightened, I realize there’s more enlightenment or levels of awareness. Lol. Then I realize, I know nothing about enlightenment!

I’m just very excited. I’m excited about all the twists and turns my life has taken. I’m excited because I was stuck in a downward spiral and now I’m just constantly going upward and just when I think I can’t go any higher, I’m lifted even higher! I seem to be constantly gauging my reactions to the stimuli that life presents to me. I wonder if I’m over reacting, overly excitement, or if I’m not excited enough. I’m naturally analytical and introspective mostly towards myself and the things I’m engaging with in my life.

There have been some very defining moments in my life when everything changed. I’m talking about changing from someone who took numerous psychotropics to none; someone who was very depressed, psychotic, and suffering with post traumatic stress disorder. I have recently discovered that most of the changes in my life, although they came about from a specific catalyst, the biggest factor that took me to a mentally healthier version of me, was letting go of fears. I let go of the fears of the unknown. I stopped worrying about what others would think. I stopped worrying about being judged. I stopped wondering what if something went wrong and instead dreamed about things going right. I stopped the fearful thoughts that swirled around and around in my head. They certainly weren’t working for me!

I also decided to believe change is possible. I decided to bet on me. I decided to try anything and everything to radically switch the direction of my life instead of going with the same old status quo. There really are seasons of our lives. It’s important to recognize what season I’m in, in order to switch between seasons with grace and ease, and fearlessly. It’s nice to add a bit of inquisitiveness. What is around the corner? What is just around the river bend? Where is the bend in the road leading me to? Can I just peek a little bit as I hurry over there? I’m not afraid, simply because I’ve turned so many corners, despite sometimes not even knowing what to expect (although I did expect something good, at least).

The biggest factor which effected the direction I took, as the seasons changed, was questioning my fears, my self talk, and fear mongering. I especially like to question when someone else tries to tell me what is best for me. I definitely question prolific fear mongering in all of it’s forms. Pretty soon here, I’m going to start a rant about fear mongering. The biggest fear mongering that annoys me is the fear of judgement. I will be the first to admit that I used to be very fearful of judgement, especially judgment from God. However, I don’t live with this fear anymore. It was a very long season of my life, in which I feared judgement from God. However, the season has changed. I am happier and freer since I let go of this fear and many other fears. Every now and then, someone will do a little bit of fear mongering to suck me back into it, by telling me that God’s going to come judge me, but I don’t buy into it.

The final indication of the season changing is that I’m willing to write and talk about letting go of fears! I no longer fear what people will say about my changing my mind about fears. I changed my mind about God’s judgment. It’s a brand new season! This is a huge step because it’s sort of the precursor to another book I’ve been writing. The message here, right now, is that people change their minds about things, their beliefs and their ideas, and it’s totally okay! It’s okay to question my beliefs. It’s okay to say, “That sounds like bullshit!” I used to be afraid to question things, and I loathed myself.  Now, I love myself and I allow myself to have different beliefs than others. It’s about being true to me and what works for me. I live from the heart. I ask myself, “what would love to do?” I do this because I personally believe, love is the answer.   Seasons change.

Everybody’s Crazy

Many years ago, I was very depressed and taking numerous medications for my condition. It was complicated by personality disorders and PTSD. One time, my sister called me around my birthday and asked me what I wanted. I told her, “what I want, you can’t buy.” She asked, “what is it?” I told her I wanted a right mind. She said to me, “Oh, Sophie, everybody’s crazy!” I quietly cried feeling very misunderstood. She didn’t know how bad I was feeling. She didn’t know I just wanted to die. About 20 years later, I finally understood what she meant! This is about how long it took for me to get myself together, too, in order to start making changes in my life so I could heal. I started to realize everyone was crazy so I wondered, What the hell am I trippin’ on???

There is a difference between someone who is going through a chemical imbalance of some sort and the normal everyday crazy.  However, many people don’t understand this. They don’t understand a person who feels they are not in their right mind feels crazy, out of control, like something has taken over, as if they are lost without a body, just wandering around like a lost soul. So many people throw around phrases like, “that’s so crazy” without understanding how it effects people who think they might be crazy. I used to just go “crazy” when people used phrases like, “that’s so schizophrenic” or would cavalierly call something crazy. It would embroil me and get me all worked up. I try not to use the word “hate” ever because it’s a serious word and I hardly truly hate anything or anyone, but I do hate the “crazy” word. Although, sometimes, I’m known to sing, “boom boom, ain’t it great to be crazy!”

Once I woke up to the reality of everyone’s general craziness, it wasn’t so bad. I could relax and not try so hard to be “normal” whatever the hell is normal! Lol. Relaxing, I’m able to be a bit more objective, understanding and compassionate towards myself instead of constantly striving to be something or someone else to fit in.

Today, many people strive to be themselves, start their own trends, wear whatever colors they want, do what they want, without checking to see if it’s the current fad or craze, nor seeking anyone’s approval. Everyone is not striving to fit into some category or box. There is a bit of chaos and craziness involved! However, in my mind, trying to look like others or fit in, is a bit of craziness, too! There’s just no other explanation. It’s okay to be different. It’s okay to be outspoken or quiet. It’s okay to be upbeat or sad. There’s nothing wrong with being human! There’s nothing wrong with feeling your emotions deeply. There’s nothing wrong with not feeling your emotions. Why must we constantly look at someone and judge whether or not they are behaving normally? Normal simply doesn’t exist. I realize there may be some signs that someone’s life is off balance and maybe they need assistance with it, or not.

What I know is that many people suffer in silence out of shame or guilt. They don’t want to be pointed out, don’t want to be judged, don’t want to be called, “crazy” or “insane” so they keep their own opinions and preferences to themselves. I know I did. Starting from when I was little, someone would ask me what I want, I’d say, “I don’t care.” I was afraid to make a choice or to state my preference for many reasons, but that was my general answer. Mainly because I had seen others teased for liking something different. I’d seen people ridiculed, laughed at or picked on for wearing different clothes, liking other music, choosing other foods, etc…

Nowadays, the “c” word doesn’t bother me so much, but back when I was struggling with my mental illness, it was very disheartening. People who are different are not crazy. People with different perceptions of reality are not crazy. People who choose to live their lives on their own terms are not crazy. People who dance to the beat of their own drum, even if you can’t hear the drum beat, are not crazy. People who are sensitive, delicate, or don’t fit into a boxed category are not crazy. People with a mental illness are not crazy. Oh, yet, everybody’s crazy!

Depression’s Effects…

The topic of suicide has come up a lot lately. A couple of years ago, when I started writing, I told myself I wouldn’t write about it. I decided it was something best laid to rest. I never wanted to revisit it. I had attempted it numerous times. Why should I be ashamed of it? There is a shame, guilt and sadness attached to it. It’s not easy to recover from it and it’s no longer my reality. However, I recently had a change of heart and decided to share a little bit on it. It’s not easy to write about it either.

In the many years I suffered from major depressive disorder, there were times when I had happy and upbeat moments but they didn’t last long. I would sink back into the reality of why I became depressed in the first place. It seemed to be a never ending spiral. I did attempt to hide my depression and PTSD from my children. I didn’t want them to have this bleak view of life. There were many good things in life to be grateful for, and I wanted them to see the bright side of life. However, they struggled just as I did to reach those bright days. On numerous occasions, I sank into very dark thoughts and in my despair just wanted to die. I would call a suicide hotline and they’d tell me all the reasons I had to live for. It sort of angered me to tell me to think of my husband or my kids or my family and friends. What if I didn’t have those people to live for, who would I live for then? I know this may sound dark, but if I were alone, would it be okay to go ahead with and suicide? Many people think it’s selfish for a person to take their life, but what if it’s selfish to ask this person to live in their dark despair? They wouldn’t want to if these other people were able to lift them up!

I could never presume to know what someone is going through in their darkest hours, that would make them want to give up because I know it’s different for each person. I do know that it’s a dark space, more like a hole that’s covered in dirt, it’s like being buried alive. There is no tunnel with a light at the end. Who would want to go there? Not many people will dare to tread the darkness searching for light. When I was in this state, I was very lost and alone. I didn’t think my wanting to die or my death would be a selfish act. I thought it would be a great relief. I thought it was an act of love and mercy for those alive if they didn’t have to see me living in this state of living death.

I really didn’t think of the pain I would cause others if I had succeeded, yet I know now, they’d be living in this perpetual state of depression and sadness. It takes a long time for someone to come out of this state though. Medication can help but sometimes it only causes it to linger longer. In my case, it wasn’t just depression but extreme anxiety that I wanted to escape from plus the memories I kept reliving. I hated having flashbacks and just wanted them to stop. I now see that the memories were there to help me heal.  Anytime, a painful memory comes up, it’s only service is to heal, ultimatly to set me free, not to shame, guilt or hurt anyone. The more I resisted these memories, didn’t face the feelings, or allow myself to grieve, get angry, or whatever, the more they persisted.

It’s not exactly something to go through alone either. It required the assistance of a therapist, counselor, understanding friends and family. It took a lot of people to walk through the valley of the shadow of death in order to get me through the other side. It takes the person who is in the light, who has hope, who knows life is worth the struggle and worth living to keep you going. It takes a lot of strength and courage to keep going when you just want to give up.

People with mental illness are not weak, they are the strongest people alive because they live with these images, voices, memories, hallucinations, and extreme emotions, yet continue anyway. They hold on to their humanity, keep breathing, keep reaching for the light, keep trying over and over again despite what life throws at them. They are a beautiful and loving reminder that people are strong, yet they are also fragile, that everyone is important, everyone has a purpose, everyone brings meaning into this world, and to treat each one with kindness.

We all have a breaking point, which is why it’s important to love yourself. If I’m tired, I rest. If I’m sleepy, I go to sleep. If I’m bored, find something fun to do. If I’m hungry, I eat. If I need to talk, find someone to listen. If I need a hug, ask someone for one. Balance my life with work, rest, and play! If I’m working and not laughing enough, find the joy. There’s nothing wrong with asking for help. In fact, it’s imperative to ask for help and not try to be the lone ranger. Life is meant to be lived in community with others.  When the dark clouds descends at times, it helps to have someone who is above them.

Life is worth living and it is beautiful. Look at all of nature, it is a symbol of life, breath, and renewal despite the changing seasons and what appears to be chaos at times. I take in the breath of life each day. I allow myself to breathe deeply knowing that whatever is going on, it will pass. The seasons change. Engage in life mindfully.  Be in the moment. Do things that brings joy.  Just breathe.

Beauty of Hindsight

I don’t know how many times I have wondered, “Why did this happen to me?” I don’t know how many times I wondered why I was let go or dismissed. I thought I had done everything right and followed all the rules. I put my best foot forward, I was nice, polite, and “something else”! Yet things didn’t go as planned! What I’ve learned is many people learn their lessons in hindsight. After all, if I’d known a relationship wouldn’t pan out, maybe I never would have started it. If I had known the job wasn’t a good fit, I wouldn’t have tried it and left. Perhaps it was meant to go that way to teach me a lesson! Not many of us have the right perceptions in order to avoid seemingly “disastrous outcomes.” Yet, I believe all of these experiences are life lessons.

However, it usually takes a long time to learn the lesson when I’m resisting it. Like many years ago, I was very depressed and hurt at the way my life was going and the relationships not working out. I wondered what I had done wrong. I didn’t feel like I had done anything wrong. The more I pondered it, the more I wanted an answer, the more I stewed and couldn’t let it go. This is where the danger of falling into depression and being unable to cope comes in. Yes there were many other factors, but at the time I didn’t know how to just let go. I didn’t have the life skills, yet this exact situation was teaching them to me! Resisting, and insisting on answers caused me to lose the lesson until many years after I had finally moved on, and one day I had an “aha” moment of revelation!

I often ask myself now, when things seem to be going awry, “what is this situation trying to teach me?” Sometimes, it’s apparent and other times I need to wait. When I’m stuck in the middle of something, it’s hard to see where it’s going, and what I’m being taught. I’ve learned to be patient, compassionate, forgiving, and loving with myself so that I can continue to function and breathe without spiraling down. This in turn empowers me to give others patience, compassion, forgiveness, love and grace when they’re going through their own struggles. Once I figured out that I learn things in hindsight, I was able to love, forgive and move on.

Resistance slows the process! I had to learn to go with the flow! It takes patience, wisdom and trust in yourself, that you’re going to okay.  As I look back on my life, I see I have overcome so much, and I’m grateful for the beauty of hindsight!