With a middle-of-moi intention of sharing illuminating, alleviating, and elevating ideas for you, I offer ‘Strengthening.’
When life crevasses beneath you, as in with Lyme, it may seem one leg slides northward, the other leg southward while the space between grows.
Have you felt like this – as though, at any moment, you’ll crack in two?
This sensation, a visceral memory, still lives within me. From 12 years of Lymelands.
It’s a summonable feeling for compassion. Sometimes it’s instantaneous and unwitting when witnessing another’s hardship. Other times, it’s purposefully brought up to mentally revisit difficulties, increasingly closer to difficulty-red-center. As is tolerable, when the Divine or I determine ‘tis time.
Pursuing shadows and/or weaknesses can actually be done to heal even more. Brutifully as Glennon Doyle coined, where more difficulty lies, more Strength can rise.
Challenges – even profoundest Lyme ones – can be pondered on the heart, mulled carefully, and lovingly delved into and, even, accepted. When/if ready. On an individual’s timeline.
Gently and incrementally, with pauses, it’s possible to move towards trust. And, believe it or not, eventually gratitude. And, Light.
From this, Power and Strength can emerge.
During prep for a Women Willpower talk, I was feeling over the crevasse again.
Facing fears and a sneaky, not quite worthy sense for a professionally recorded telling of my story and discoveries to help others.
Meanwhile, life happened; a sick pup, homework support, work glitches, and dear ones’ troubles called for prioritizing.
These wee trials and tribulations were more Strengthening practice.
So I did what helped me in the past. Advance gratituding Heaven and in my journal and attempting a good night’s sleep before assisted me some however, as knees knocked beforehand, deep breathing and praying were on repeat waiting my turn backstage.
Sensing the Divine had it covered more than I did – just like in the Lyme days – however still, gulp. Poorly disguised worry welled within even as speaker friends murmuring support.
When my time came, I next stepped onto the stage and, imperfectly, shared my story and helpful info.
Because, this Lyme journey, my horrific times, are NOT going to be wasted.
Nietzsche, who wrote in 1888, “out of life’s school of war – what doesn’t kill me, makes me stronger” was on point. Ecce Homo, Nietzsche’s autobiography notes some “turn serious accidents to his[her] advantage” per dictionary.com.
There’s not an implication here that all challenge ends in Strength. That, I believe, is partly a choice. Nor is this pink happy face plastered over pain. For me now and plenty-o-leaders per The Obstacle is the Way by Ryan Holiday, hardship’s an opportunity for Strengthening. For utilizing ugh and emerging from it, potentially, Stronger.
There’s continued choice-making to pursue hard stuff and fear (when tolerable and with taking breaks and stepping back at times). To peek at then face into weaknesses and address deep hurt. For Strengthening and healing. Thennnn, repeat.
You can onion peel to Strengthen by pondering perfectionism, self-blaming, self-criticizing, and self-shaming.
You, too, can tap an “unsuspected reserve of Strength inside that emerges when life puts us to the test,” per Isabel Allende.
Not saying it’s easy – especially initially. However, with commitment, and practice practice practice beginning with facing wee challenges where success is more likely, Strengthening happens. Then, you can work up, incrementally, to bigger, tougher fears or limiting thoughts.
Strengthening occurs little by little by continuing to expand your mind by reading, listening, committing, humbling, waiting. Without perfection expectations. Prioritizing taking care of you, stillness, and whatever’s soul-feeding in the process.
When I began the talk, fear hackled within 16 minutes before a live audience. It was imperfect – yet with love – annnnnd, bonus, no tripping or falling off the stage and treasured ones cheering. With eyes, hearts, and hands.
Strength, with Angel’s help, is built-in taking 1 step at a time. Even of a nanometer’s width, when backing out’s possible. When smaller me – or perhaps you – hankers to dart, avoid, or keep following the same path.
In the Lyme abyss, it’s actually possible to decide more – and more – to stand or sit with fear (which, mind you, I’ve itty bitty walked towards since 2017) and Strengthen.
Doing this, at your pace, you may find discoveries. And, healing. Then some more.
Perhaps remember that “there is nothing that happened in the past [or in the now] that can hold back your good. That’s Strength. That’s Power.” Boom, Marianne Williamson.
Sending mega love beams to Strengthening you,