Roots, Bloody Roots!

This photo does absolutely fuck all justice to how impossible it was to break down and remove this giant, deeply anchored lump of concrete. (And this blog borrowed it’s title from the Sepultura song of the same name!) The photo is the foundation of my garden path. My awesome friends have been helping me remove it (THANK YOU!) It’s taken around 15 hours in total to break it, it’s foundations and the metal rods, but this bitch of a lump was not coming out. The rods mostly got broken off and the mound became smaller, but it was proving impossible.

This was only a small task in comparison to the rest of the work I have to do. It has been essential that I’ve asked for help, because it’s not something I could have done safely by myself. Toddlers on your back and swinging sledgehammers onto concrete…. Don’t do it!

When this small but seemingly monumental task began, I remembered thinking that it felt really symbolic considering all the ongoing work I’ve been doing over the last few years- work to try and reconnect with my center, to dig deep and sift through all the baggage and trauma and shadows that lurk inside of myself. Removing this giant, slightly dangerous and unsightly path that I’d never have opted for felt like a finale to trying to unpick the parts of myself that never were mine to begin with. I know its time to build my own path, no excuses and only personal responsibility for where I end up.

As I was watching the pitchfork get more bent up from loosening brick and cement and iron from under the earth, I told my friends about my theory and we joked about it for the rest of the evening. It was getting less and less like a joke and more and more like it was a direct and physical manifestation of the internal struggle I’ve been going through during this blog process and prior. We joked that maybe I was meant to just bury my trauma after all and something that’s clicked a million times, but still never enough, sunk in. Perhaps because I was already hammering at my foundations and there was no other place for truth to go than to my core.

There comes a point where you can’t keep trying to erase all that was traumatic from your life and call it healing. Eventually you have to stop picking at, digging away and sledge hammering at your trauma – the parts of yourself that most need love – and realise that there’s another way of looking at burying it.

There’s building on it.

I realised. remembered, accepted… Whatever word… that once you’re done removing all of the parts of yourself that were never yours, you’re left with what’s left of who you were always meant to be. Like it or lump it. And I’ve got a great big lump of cement/trauma that I’m going to work with and love instead of trying, failing and harming myself by trying to gouge it out of my past. What’s left is me. Its here to stay.

It was suggested that I should fill the hole with loads of fertile soil and that is exactly what I’ll do. Physically and metaphorically. Spiritually and mentally. Emotionally. In all ways. Every ally. Everyone is an ally in growth.

Another beautiful friend helped me have a further huge break through today and accept that it’s ok to accept help and to be vulnerable…Of course I know that and I tell people that, but it’s so, so much easier to preach than practice. After one hell of an ego wounding and war, a constant battle of survival and self preservation after facing losing everything, I have to remember how to trust again now. Its time to read Ego/Self: a fairy tale again and to stop fucking fighting everything.. especially my self.

I started a free online course with this epic woman who I’ve never even met, but who speaks to me on such a deep level. Its not a personalised course but it’s deeply personal and such very essential understanding if we are to make healthier futures for ourselves. Its called Trauma and Transcendence with Kimberly Johnson, or Magamama on Facebook. She’s got a book and is writing more. What she has to say, what others like her have to say… Its so fucking necessary. The video you’ll be emailed by filling in the form will hopefully completely change how you view yourself and all others across all of space and time.

I want to launch into an explanation of the course but I won’t do it justice. I need to redo it over and over to let it all keep sinking in where I’m ready to meet it, but what it’s taught me most importantly is that there is a healthier and more authentic way of being in my body, and in turn my life. My body can give me better information about what’s been recorded than my mind, because the mind is subjective and the body isn’t.

If I want to fully occupy my life, if I want to fully embrace building a healthier life, I absolutely have to start by inhabiting my body completely and in the present. I’ll be looking for new ways to do that.

Time to get back to the present!

And it’s time to reconnect with the expansive, not restrictive part of my self and to remember to see others with love. Its hard to not be insular when you’ve lived in survival mode for ages. When you don’t have enough for yourself it’s so hard give and connect meaningfully with others. I think maybe it’s time to revisit the Goddess Makeover book I’ve been working on and see if I’m ready to move on to the next chakra, the sacral, which is all about connection and relationships. Sensuality and sexuality. How we connect with ourselves and others. The first was the root. Bloody root!

Good foundations build a better life. Good company makes it worth living.

The physical is always the final thing to shift. If we start as energy, which manifests into thought, which manifests into matter…. What matters if we want change is that we direct our energy to thinking more in tune with who and what we want to be, with what we already are.

If we want change, we have to stop trying and start being that change.

Like Gandhi said.

And that is the power of now…

(That one is Eckhart Tolle)

Absent Progress

Usually when I disappear from my ‘duties’ (like this is a duty, ha!), it’s because I am stagnating and not really committing to myself properly. For once, I’ve actually been upping my game fractionally every day on the self worth commitment front. Is my life better? No, i’m still grumpy and miserable and stressed and I moan and bitch all the time. Perhaps I could even say things feel a little bit worse, but that isn’t true. All that has happened through this process so far is that I have become more aware of what I am creating mindlessly. I am yet to return to a level of control over what I am making manifest in my life, but awareness and acceptance is a first step, as they say.

I am aware that I look for or expect the worst, I panic, I blame, I give up or don’t even start, I don’t believe myself or others (less of this latter one) capable of something big or small… I am basically a fucking doomer. I don’t feel unwell, I don’t feel really low… I just feel disconnected from my happy, wholesome source. And my absent progress is that every day I am doing something to step closer towards my core. There will come a time, as there has in the past, when I will be able to do this at the flip of a switch. I don’t feel there yet, and another thing that’s changed is I am more ok with that… I am more accepting of where I am at. Life can be better but I am taking steps to make it so.

January saw me do “Yoga With Adriene’s Dedicate 30 day Yoga Challenge”. 

I stuck to it every single day. I had my daughter jumping on my ribs, pooping frequently, crying or doing her best to sabotage it. I saw it as an opportunity to continue to do my best to commit to myself even when everything feels against me and I learned a lot of things along the way. I highly recommend that woman’s work – she is beautifully in touch with what needs to happen for us to better connect with our purpose, and what she teaches us about our bodies applies all over our lives. I am still doing her yoga videos every day and I continue to do so for the rest of 2019 and beyond. Or yoga daily at least, maybe I won’t need videos eventually. So far I have only missed one day, because I forgot about it.

For February I have added in a daily gratitude practice. Every day I have been writing in some depth about something I am grateful for and the impact of that thing, or lack of, in my life and the life of others. I also will be starting up my gratitude jar any day now – I am sucking at this because its hard to put it somewhere the baby can’t reach but that will remind me. I will do better.

My intention is that for every month of 2019, I will implement a new thing to my life to go on top of the previous things. Some are actually old but forgotten. Some things I think I would like to do in coming months are to go for a walk every day, cook healthier meals, practice meditation (in multiple forms), be creative, do something kind, help the planet, meaningful connection etc. I hope to build up a healthier way of being and living and doing everything in my life month on month, adding a new ‘thing’ on top of the previous ones every month. A foundation of self worth, compassion, productivity and well being, built up gradually so it doesn’t feel impossibly difficult.

I have also started writing my fiction novel. I haven’t gotten very far, and I only manage a couple of a5 pages each time, because somehow my daughter can tell (even in sleep) that I am writing and then she wakes up. She has done so once already as I write this. But it is a start, and I feel good for having done it… for having done something… for having woken up my imagination!

The final thing I have been up to is going to Oxford University for a seminar with the Faculty of Law. It was on ‘consent to vaginal examinations in labour and birth’. It was majorly intense and a little bit traumatic, but I was glad to be invited and included, for my voice to matter; to have an opportunity to put right what failed me and what fails other women so frequently. It was full of remarkable people – other women like me, professionals, academics, activists and world changers. I will speak more on it when I can, when their papers are published and when there is more momentum, & when I am ready to share my story more. It doesn’t feel like an important time to tell it here. Not yet, anyway. I had some closure from a very long complaint too, which ended far more favourably than I could have hoped.

If you take one thing away from this rambling pile of twaddle, let if be that we are worthy of however long it takes to do whatever it takes to get to what feels good inside ourselves again. We start with acceptance of where we are at. We work through the discomfort of acknowledging all of the ways in which we are self destructive. Then slowly, bit by bit by bit, we rebuild into a healthier, happier and more whole version of who we always were. Underneath the accumulated baggage, suffering & burden of who we thought we were, there is the brightest, most soulful, powerful, courageous and fulfilled badass motherfucker that we have always been at heart.

But until then… I am sucking it up and trying my best to get on with remembering.

PS. I also just watched this on Netflix “Heal”

PPS. So now I am going to work with this to heal my trauma: “EFT”

PPPS. The photo above is of Tolkien’s bedroom window at Oxford Uni and I was so bloody excited to look at it. Feels a bit dorky now, though.