It has literally taken me years to get to where I am right now. In this moment. The person I am today is because of my struggles and the battles that I have taken on. Scary choice really. I could have just continued on and taken the easy road, but I didn’t. I wanted more. Oh so much more! I wanted a life that was honest and creative and loving.
Simple and hard. I chose to be contrary. To go against the flow of the culture around me. Not just the community that I grew up in, but also my own family. Some would call that crazy. Some would call it brave. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not contrary just for the sake of being different. You see I wasn’t willing to settle for the status quo. I wasn’t happy with things as they were. I wasn’t happy being who I was told to be. Constantly being bogged down with negative messages that chipped away at my heart and soul hurt in so many ways.
To do this, I had to find myself. I had to find clarity about my own heart. The noise had to disappear. I had to ask myself “who am I?” and “what is everything and everyone else?” That clarification was key. I had to know what thoughts revolving around in my head were me and what was just noise. A difficult task to be sure. This involved putting a spot light on the little and big things. I began to question everything in my life. From ‘what really is my favorite color?’ to ‘what are my spiritual beliefs?’ Not someone else’s, but mine and mine alone.
Like I said, little and big. This felt like the only way to find my self, my true self. There were some meltdowns. At times I felt like I was going crazy, at others I felt like flying. This has been a difficult journey with plenty of ups and downs. I won’t deny it. It has been so worth it! I wouldn’t change a thing. To be myself, to truly live a soulful life completely inline with what gives me joy has been my goal for a long time now.
As I learn I evolve. We all do, if we put forth some effort. If we don’t evolve and grow we become stagnant. This is just the way it works. I chose to embrace the process. How exciting to not know exactly what is around the bend. Always something new to learn about ourselves and the world around us. With an open mind and an open heart I see miracles every day. This perspective has made all the difference in the world.
For twenty years I have done this work of getting to my heart. There have been the distractions of everyday life, but I have pushed on. I made a commitment to myself to live with integrity. This journey has brought me home. I am at home in my own skin. It wasn’t always this way.
Looking back I realize that it didn’t have to take me twenty long years, my entire adult life. I’m still young in the ways that count, even if I do have an old soul. So why did it take so long for me? I was journeying blind. I had no idea where I was going. I didn’t know left from right and so in turn didn’t know what to trust as real.
I had inspiration from books here and there, mostly fiction, that planted tiny seeds in me while I was young. All that clarifying brought so many of them back to mind, dug out of my memory banks. The ones that really stood out in my mind and created a deep yearning in me were all about these amazing relationships. Families, imperfect, but beautiful. Strangers that crossed paths, then became the closest of friends. Friends that were closer than family.
Dreams came of family and friends. Laughter across shared meals. Children cherished. Hardships that made the connections stronger. People who loved the work they did, but balanced that work with home life. I also dreamed of more ways of showing love that I didn’t have any experience with. From scratch cooked meals, sometimes from the garden. Salves for scratches and burns. Sharing a workload when it got to be too much. Listening and being heard. Mothers and grandmothers passing down stories and teaching skills.
I didn’t see these type of examples growing up, but I read about them and I knew that they didn’t come out of a vacuum. I knew without a doubt that it was possible. To have the home and relationships and work that I loved. After twenty years, my life reflects my dreams and there is more around the bend in the road. Who knows what will come my way! I can’t wait to see.
If you are lost and don’t know where home is, don’t do the work alone. There is a way to shorten the learning curve. Hook your arm in mine, I’ll show you the way, friend.
I will be back to point the way and I have a gift in the works. Subscribe so that you don’t miss out.