There are things we tell ourselves.   That we are not good enough.  That we are not strong enough.   We are not pretty enough.   We just don’t have what it takes.   We all know those voices.  They creep in at some point in our lives and change who we are depending on how long they stick around.   Sometimes right down to our very DNA until those thoughts and voices are just part of us, like a limb.  

For some of us, those can be a lifetime of inner doubts and ridicule.   They lead us down dark alleys, both figuratively and literally at times.  We make choices based on fear or apathy for our own selves.   And that fear can sometimes tell us it’s someone else’s fault, so we start developing resentments and sometimes fall into victim thinking.   It is too much for us to be responsible for, too overwhelming.   Some of us are silent in this and some of us will tell anyone who will listen.   It becomes a security blanket or shield.  It’s something we know and so to just push it away can be even scarier than staying in the muck and dis-ease of our thoughts.  

“What if we let it go and try to heal and things just get worse?   How much more can I take?  I think I will just stay here and guard my sadness.  I will just pretend to smile and people will like me.   I will say yes, all the time so no one gets mad at me.   I can keep all these balls in the air.   Until one drops.   Then look at me, I knew I would fail.  How can I hide my shame and guilt and fear?   I will retreat.   Lick my wounds and pretend it didn’t happen.   I will clutch my blanket tighter.  Smile, they won’t notice if you keep smiling.”  It’s exhausting.   

Sometimes, especially for a lot of women, our weaknesses are taken advantage of.   These awful moments can plunge us further into the darkness.     The voices tell us we deserved it.  We just are not good enough.   And we learn to cope, sometimes with unhealthy lifestyle choices whether it be alcohol, food, drugs, shopping, etc.  Sometimes we just cling onto other wounded souls and try to glean some comfort.  Unfortunately, their own dis-ease prohibits them from comforting us for too long.  And the cycle continues.   Resentment, fear, self doubt.  You get the picture.  It gets ugly.  

This is reality for so many in this world.   This was my reality for years and years, most of my life really.  My fear was my security and I clung to it like a drowning person clutching a rock.   Facing all of it has been incredibly scary.   There have been times I was sure I wasn’t able to breath.   But breath I did, and the most wonderful things started happening.  It’s been incredibly freeing.   I don’t have to be that victim.   I don’t have to make choices based on my own fear anymore.  I can actually be happy and mean it!  What?!

A little over 4 years ago I wasn’t sure this was possible for me.   I didn’t know that I could step into the light.   But then I found my community.   Like a scared animal, I slowly crept out of my cave and into the arms of these souls who did not coddle me, but who instead have guided me to seeing a brighter day.  

They answer the phone when I call and they listen, and then they help me take action.   They don’t tease me or make me feel small.  Their love and experience lifts me up when I am feeling weak and make my own light shine even brighter when I am feeling strong.   They know who they are.   They are men and women who have made different choices.  Healthier choices.   They guide me and help me guide others.  They help me find my faith, find my trust and find God.   And they allow me to fall down sometimes, without judgement, hands outstretched to help me back up again.   They teach me to be of service.   And we laugh, great joyful belly laughs.  Have you ever done that??   Just laughed until you cried and then just kept laughing some more??   It is so wonderful!  

And I found these friends both in my daily life and in my business life.  The two have melted into one and it’s truly a gift.   All these souls filling my heart with love and light and the beauty of God.  I never knew.   ❤️ 

So now, I can fall down.   And yes it sometimes hurts.  And yes, there are moments I don’t feel like standing back up.  And every so often those voices try to whisper.   But I have a better security blanket now.   Something much stronger and more real than I could imagine.   And I have a community to help me when I struggle.   And most importantly, I have God so am never truly alone.   

“Fear is only an illusion. It is the illusion that creates the feeling of separateness – the false sense of isolation that exists only in our imagination.”  Jeraldine Saunders