I felt an urgency, a nudge to explore today, albeit a bit strange writing for me to begin, mostly because I don’t know where it will land. Possibly it will be just me preaching to myself, but I hope that along the way, it speaks to you. I’m usually so intentional as to my message, but there are days when you just need to see what bubbles up…
It’s no secret that I have a collection of autoimmune diseases. I’m quite transparent about them. I don’t share for the sympathy, but for solidarity. Most of us that battle chronic illness look quite normal on the outside, while inside, our body rages against itself.
The medications for said illnesses are more like poison than relief; although attempting to navigate the illnesses without them would cause more damage and devastation to the body. While many go a more holistic route, I’m trusting the science…
…however, at some point you have to take some accountability. To love yourself enough to make changes. For yourself.
The level of chaos that stress, anxiety and unprocessed trauma leaves within your body is insurmountable.
The body remembers.
The soul holds space.
I won’t replay “old tapes” here, as I’ve already written volumes on it, but pain is universal.
I’ve always joked about my Lithuanian/Catholic heritage and that my people invented guilt, but sometimes the level of guilt we hold-in, roll-around-in and walk-in daily is more destructive than anything. I do feel guilty that I’ve not taken better care of me. I do feel guilty that had I made better choices, some level of illness could have been prevented. Even while most of it is just really bad genetics.
Guilt and shame are really heavy. I mean really fucking heavy. But they are not independent, they are co-dependent. They require a “target” for their strength. While some carry enough guilt themselves, to punish themselves; others may feel their strength by serving it to others.
Guilt and shame are manufactured, they are not naturally occurring. Whether you are the one to hold it or the one to serve it, at its core, is pain. I know for certain that I have caused a lot of people, a lot of pain. I carry that burden. I own it. But I can no longer carry it. I have to put it down.
My body remembers.
My soul holds space.
Perhaps, you’re reading this feeling as though you have been served a lifetime of guilt and shame.
Your body remembers.
Your soul holds space.
That guilt and shame is not yours to carry. It is the deep rooted pain in someone else that felt better by hurling it at you.
“When you know better, you do better.” I’ve heard it a million times and said it almost as much. But there is such truth; a necessary accountability. When we know better, if we do not do better, we just play Ring-around-the-Rosie with the pain until we ALL fall down. When we take the accountability for doing better, we can be better.
I’m not that crazy to believe that by being better that I can make myself well. Yes, I have incurable illnesses, but I can be better. Shaking off guilt and shame ventilates a space that allows Love to expand her footprint.
To love each other better, is a grande notion, but what amazing and potential power there is in loving ourselves better.
When we learn to love ourselves better, we create a lighthouse for others to navigate their way. When we love ourselves enough to say “enough” to the things that no longer serve us or create real joy in us, we can truly be better.
This shedding of the things that are no longer serving us, might be:
- Bad behaviors or habits that you have used for coping skills
- A job that you dislike and carry with you to the point of punishing those around you.
- A relationship that feels one-sided, empty or unhealthy
- The “old tapes” that I mentioned earlier that seem to replay over and over.
The body remembers.
The soul holds space.
Peeling back the layers of pain is super messy and really fucking hard. YOU. ARE. WORTH. IT. Your literal health is depending on it.
The old joke, “ How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time” is actually pretty sage advice. Make a conscious choice today, to do ONE thing better. And the next day, ONE more.
Help your body to change its memory.
Give your soul the nourishment it needs to grow and not just hold space.
Blessed be ❤️