I sit here with a chip on my shoulder. Sometimes I think that I need to have it all figured out, I need to be the best at everything or else I am nothing. And the weight I carry can feel like too much.
And then I remember, this is what I came for.
If I didn't feel the heaviness, how could I help people lighten their own load? If I didn't feel anxiety, how would I know how to soothe myself, and in turn others, in the midst of racing thoughts. If I was always feeling good enough, how can I relate to others who are in the lowest of lows? If I didn't once have addiction to perfection, and by result adderall, how could I recognize the need to succeed that drives others into the ground so far they hit rock bottom?
I was just feeling intense anxiety over a text message. The person was asking me for my email because someone had a question for me. The racing thoughts were immediate. I sat here wondering what they could be asking, and also knowing I've been a little behind, I contemplated what they think of me.
Do they think I'm no good because I haven't gotten them what I should have for weeks? Would they decide to work with someone else instead because of my lateness? How could I let myself go this long without following up? I knew this would happen, and I let it happen. Am I sabotaging? Am I lazy? What's wrong with me?
Oh, the thoughts that can come in and be so cruel.
Typing this, I can see my automatic tendency to criticize myself, before anyone else gets the chance to. It feels like protection, to bring myself down so others don't have that pattern. I've been aware of this for years, and at times I wonder when it will ever be done with? But I also know that this is the work, my lifetime work, and the work I will lead other people through, and how can I if I am not consistently working on it myself?
I have to remind myself over and over again that although things don't always happen for a reason, they do end up happening for our highest good if we choose to let them. Being presented with grief in such a large way in my life has lead me to love even harder, and take more risks that are in service of my joy because I know how short life is. Having lots of baggage often helps me realize it's OK and necessary to let the heavy stuff go too.
I only came to my awakening because of being in a huge period of darkness. And my life is entirely different and better because of that time. So how can darkness be bad when it leads to so much beauty? I've found that reframing what darkness means to me is vital as I continue along this human journey, because it will always show up in one way or another.
Finally learning to be grateful for the dark, as much as the light, has allowed me to transmute my pain into purpose. And there is no greater alchemy than that.