Embarking on a de-addiction voyage.

As the Corona virus threat looms large we have been asked to stay at home and to follow social distancing.

This quarantine time provides the much needed forced rest for me. I have this restless energy that forces me to be always in motion lest my dark clouds overtake me. It has always been my quest to try to  stay ahead even if it’s just one step. Along the way I discovered people helped, I used them as my lifelines to safety.  As I worked my way through difficult weeks or months I searched for every hand that I could trust to pull me up. Now as I sit back and pause I realise I have developed a deep dependency on my connections. An addiction to people. It was reading Pema Chodron that opened my eyes to such a possibility. I always thought of addictions in relation to substances. I am using people as others use substances to find comfort.

Using substances to feel good can create havoc within us but when the addiction involves people the equation is even more complicated. You are adding another person with their own stories and limitations. It is not a static equation of use at will when needed. The dynamics involved make it even more dangerous.The moment I feel lost, lonely or restless,I reach out to people to find my ground even going so far as to make my home in them.

Hoping the lows that come will be something I can deal with. This time I don’t have the option of keeping mindlessly busy in and out of the house. I want to break my habit  of reaching out to people.

As with people who go into rehabilitation I too will need to find ways to overcome my addiction. I am going to gently break old familiar patterns. I am going to sit and befriend my lows. I know they come and they go. Now I need to learn to not rush to fill the voids and emptiness within me with people.

I need to learn to stay with my feelings, whatever arises; without judging. Maybe if I embrace the loneliness, this sense of being lost or this  sadness that envelopes me, I will finally learn what it has been trying to teach me all along.

In my  detox mode I need to go  cold turkey.I will keep dropping story lines as they emerge.This time I am going to muster all my inner reserves of strength to just be.As with any de-addiction process I know this will be difficult. I will stumble, I will fall. I might even want to give up . I know I will go into my old pattern of weaving stories that we all use to justify our addictions. Whatever arises I will stay with intensely missing people without trying to find my comfort zones. Hoping to emerge stronger on this journey.

Inside the Chrysalis

I am scared. There is this protective cocoon I have created around myself. I have held the connections I have made as my life lines. I use them to surface up each time the lows hit me. I see I have become too dependent on them. So even thinking of moving to unfamiliar places makes me feel clostrophobic. There is a sense of panic. A voice keeps reminding me that I am going to be all alone and my support system too won’t be available to fall back on.

The logical part of me knows that this is  only my fear of change and letting go. I must  trust that somehow I have always been blessed with wonderful people in my life. So I will continue to make new bonds and the old ones that matter shall always be there, growing in newer ways.

I have been feeling more and  more alone past few days. I know I cannot use my emotional instability to hinder someone else’s pursuit of their dreams and aspirations. I admire the will power it takes to set out on difficult paths that speak to one’s heart.

I also recognize  that the process takes a toll on me;it leaves me feeling more lonelier than before. I need to find ways to stay in the present and not get overwhelmed by an unknown future. I need to trust that grace has always placed her protective hand over me and will lead me to a better place. I need to let go of trying to keep everything familiar. I will be pushed out of my cocoon and it won’t be an easy process but who knows, maybe the emerging butterfly will be beautiful.

Pause to Stay.

“Leave time alone for a minute.”
This is what the little girl infront of me said as she tried to tie her shoelace faster as I repeated “We are going to be late”. She looked at my anxious face and said “It’s okay to be late. Chill.”

Some days I get highly anxious, stressed out and jittery. There is a sadness that at times keep pulling me down. Some days it feels like I am on the edge all the time. I am not able to sit down. I am too scared to stop.
I can feel the palpitation and the anxiety building. I force myself to take deep breaths, to slow myself down and push forth. I am able to show up, push through the tasks but it drains me by the end of the day. All I want to do is crawl into bed and sleep. It’s been a while since I wanted to hide away. It’s becoming tough to face each day.

I can see that I am losing my footing, becoming snappy, my thoughts are running on full steam.I have a real obsession with time. I get extremely agitated if things do not go as planned. I catch myself looking at my watch so many times.
I somehow cannot relax or be in the moment or be spontaneous about anything.There is always a ‘to do’ list and if it’s not on my list then it throws me completely off balance. I can clearly see I am turning into a ‘not fun person’.

Recently my husband said “Breathe, sit down, it’s not funny”. I know he meant well though I did short circuit on that ” not funny” choice of words. How can I make anyone understand that I am not able to stop. I read about something being described as ” a train wreck waiting to happen”. That so aptly fits me on most days.

I feel overwhelmed and helpless. Every fibre of me wants to scream “I am scared to sit down lest I unravel completely” or even an honest “I do not know how to”.

I am searching for answers in the written word. I have been reading Pema Chodron’s “When things fall Apart”. This book has been my constant companion. I read, pause and take it in.
I am going to try and put forth what I am reading into practice.
Learn to relax in the moment; to embrace the chaos. I am learning to keep things minute. Right now I feel a little restless, I am letting it be. This is what I call making peace with it. Trying not to judge myself for any feelings I have. Trying not to reach out to anyone or rush to fill the emptiness. I am going to learn to accept my emotions without judgement. There is no right or wrong, just letting it be. This I know isn’t going to be an easy path. For someone who is always rocked and overwhelmed by the intensity of emotions, this is going to be a slow moment to moment journey. I will need to recognize slip ups and stay with it. I will miss people and stay with it. When the voices in my head try to bring in thoughts of unworthiness ; I will acknowledge the thoughts and stay with it. Learn to say ” just a thought, so be it. ”

I will learn to slow down. Learn to stop. If everything falls apart so let it be… sometimes they need to.

My dear child, I need to learn from you to let go of time to breathe in the NOW. I am sending out a silent prayer which says “Hold me steady.Help me be brave to face the unravelling to lean into my messiness”

The Cwtch that leads me on.

I am taking it all in. Most people feel blessed in retrospect. But to feel blessed, to recognize how amazing what you have been gifted is, as it is happening;that is a feeling filled with awe.

As I sit here with my friends to welcome the new year, I cannot express how thankful I am for this room full of people who I feel are mine. I can hear conversations and music playing around me. I know I can put my head on the sofa and go off to sleep, a peaceful undisturbed sleep blanketed by the love I feel around me.

I am not required to be anything now other than who I am. This is the closest to home I have got and I am forever grateful for this. As I look around me, I know not everyone will have this. This blessing,this gift is mine for now.

I will close my eyes and experience it, allowing the moment to wash over me.

It is with this beautiful sense of belonging that I step in to a new year. A year that I hope to show up for myself bravely.

Second anniversary of blogging.

Today marks the second anniversary of my blog. In the blog marking the first one, I wrote about wanting to be braver and bring light to this blog. Yet a year later I still remain anonymous.

This past week has been a difficult one. I am struggling to get through this phase. I have realised that I find it extremely difficult to reach out to anyone, to tell them I am feeling lost. I don’t want others to be subject to this me. I also know that if I have conversations with friends it makes me feel better. I am still trying to understand why I feel this resistance to ask for help. I still haven’t been able to shake off my conditioning of crossing boundaries and of imposing myself on others. I still can’t bring myself to voice out parts of me, I am afraid I won’t be able to explain it. I am scared I won’t be understood. I also know that there is a thin line between bravery and attention seeking and I don’t want to be on the wrong side.

There are days I feel like I am sinking, I can’t find that foothold.
I wish people would understand how others have so much turmoil going on within them. How things on the outside might not be the whole story. I know that if I sit amidst my people and if someone honestly reaches out to me, I might unravel. It would feel so much lighter to give up my burdens collectively and say I am tired and scared and I don’t know why, I am just not feeling good. Can I just cry without any reason? Can you understand that for me? Can you hold my hand as I try to get a grip of myself, as I try to rise above this weight I feel?

What I have been doing past few days is writing to empty myself, letting a few tears fall unseen, then putting on my game face and pushing myself to go about the routine day to day things. I am trying very hard to show up. I hope this method works and doesn’t hurl me into the middle of a major storm.
I am learning to identify triggers and keep myself safe. Sometimes I also wonder if giving up is an option. It is exhausting to feel myself breaking, then gather myself and move forward. I do not know whether to reach out or withdraw completely into myself.

I have been going through this phase inspite of this anxiety, feeling the jitters, the palpitations and yet refusing to let the darkness win. Feeling it all but repeating that this is all momentary and that it will pass. That in the long run this is nothing. I have it within me to push through.Reminding myself that I just need to take short rest periods, collect myself, breathe slowly to let the anxiety pass and I am fine. I am trying not to think too much if I have a task at hand, to just go ahead with the belief that somehow it will all fall into place. When I handle the task I pause to tell myself that I made it to the other side safely again, this is worthy of celebration however small the task was.

When this phase is done and I emerge out, I am going to celebrate. Celebrate just being able to breathe calmly, celebrate not hearing the thud of my heart, celebrate not having my eyes fill, celebrate the lightness that comes when this blanket of sadness lifts, celebrate being alive to create beautiful moments.

So my blogging journey continues with bringing light to myself and reaching out to others like me. I need to just let it be for now. One day at a time. Like Maya Angelou said “love has to be liberating.” I need to bring to myself that kind of love, a love that sets me free to be myself. For that first I have to get stronger unafraid to be who I am. Each honest writing that I bring forth however afraid I am, guides me towards that path.

Know That

KNOW that you have been bestowed one of the biggest gifts if someone is brave to show you their scars,
KNOW that you have been offered the kind of love that you haven’t encountered yet,
KNOW that it takes immense courage to admit that one feels broken,
KNOW that their entreaty in any jumbled language is a sign of strength mustered.
KNOW that asking isn’t easy,
Know that you are safe if you refuse to accept this gift of theirs.
KNOW that someone else now believes,
They were wrong to be themselves.
KNOW that their fragile selves will never ask again,
If you do not find it within you
To be brave
To show up for them.
KNOW that kindness heals
Every single time.

When you Do not Recieve.

Ask and when you do not recieve,
Do not make it a reflection of your worth.
Do not dwell on the sadness.
Do not cringe,
That you asked for help
Worded it as precicesly as you could
Only to watch it
Brushed off.

Breathe a life into this,
The next time,
Someone stumbles with their words,
Be ready with open arms
Give what you did not recieve.
For you know
More than another
How it feels
To ask and not recieve;

Break another’s fall,
Be their landing place for a while.
Each hand you hold,
Warms yours too.
Each person you see,
Might see a bit of you too.