What I Learned From My Pain

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Someone is sobbing uncontrollably. These are cries from a heart that has lost hope. One cannot live long without hope.

I hear, “it is finished”, I stop, realizing the cries have been coming from me. My face is pressed hard against the cold cement floor in my bathroom, it feels so heavy I cannot lift it. Somehow I manage to sit up, legs crossed. Through my tear saturated lashes and swollen lids I look around me. Everything is familiar yet different.

Something has happened inside of me. Something has been awakened.

It’s Christmas Eve. I have been on my bathroom floor crying for what seems like an eternity. Life has brought me to the floor many times over the past decade. I have sat in my pain and tears; praying for the strength, courage, and ability to continue onward, but this episode is different. Something “let go”. That Christmas Eve, I found the lesson in the wound, the answer in my pain. I unearthed a part of me I didn’t know existed. Something was reborn. Me. 

The painful process of becoming who I needed to be for the next step in my life was complete.

Previously, there were many times I wanted to run from the pain, vowing this episode was going to be the last, but deep down I knew running wasn’t the answer. Over time I marinated in it, allowing the pain to open my eyes to countless beautiful wonders. I was able to see my life as it was, a gift. It taught me to focus my awareness into the moment, to forgive quickly, to see the good in everyone even when other’s couldn’t.

I cycled deeper and deeper into the pain until this moment came, arriving on time, that Christmas Eve.

Pain prepared me for what was ahead, what I ultimately could sense just over the horizon. Accepting and loving my life, even the parts that were difficult…the ones I could only offer grace to, shaped me into the person I am today. It put into motion a life that I choose intentionally. A wholesome tribe.  Relationships with boundaries. A life of balance and harmony. My voice which was hushed for so long because I was told it was not valid; I am now learning to use.

Pain shaped and guided me to move into alignment with my highest self. I am a survivor and I am thriving.

This journey is just beginning, but the beauty and possibilities are infinite. The road is harder than I envisioned, but has more depth and beauty than I could imagine. I have become increasingly aware of the magnitude of practicing gratitude within all areas of life.

True healing happens when we choose to venture into our pain; seeing, accepting, and honoring our wounds.  

The pain I now carry is different. It is moving pain. It moves with me, I allow myself to express it, to feel it. I listen to it when it arises and ask myself what I need in the moment. I no longer suppress it, or tell myself I deserve it, or label “selfish” to my feelings that long for more out of Life.

I have come to realize what was missing from my life all along, was me. 

The experiences of my life have shaped me. Some are joyous and some are very difficult. Each and every one of these experiences shaped me into who I am. I am thankful for the wonderful, but when it comes to the pain of life, repeatedly I chose to not accept it. My life was often inadvertently shaped out of trying to avoid more pain.

I’ve learned the painful experiences are just as significant as the good, sometimes more.

Perhaps it’s a divorce, death of a loved one, a life changing illness, all horrible things I wouldn’t wish on anyone and avoid even thinking about. Yet, as I face events I previously valiantly avoided, I choose to allow myself to grow through them. As I evolve I become aware of the depth they have brought to my life, that nothing else could.

Suffering strengthened me. It taught me tenderness, humility, and grace.

Suffering forces me to look at life closer, sometimes down to the moment, for the future can seem too painful, overwhelming, or scary to envision. Survival is only present in the moment.

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I have found that pain points me towards the direction where my life should go.

For as long as I can remember I had a sense something wasn’t right, something was missing.

I used vices such as social media, alcohol, and other mind numbing activities to avoid being present with my pain and myself in these moments. Avoidance allowed my pain to grow and return with more vengeance until small particles burst forth in an explosion, often displayed as anger. After the short release I would obtain control, put the lid back on, and regain composure. This emotionally unintelligent cycle was forced to repeat itself over and over again until I began to acknowledge and journey into my pain.

Sitting in my pain allowed a new version of myself to emerge, one that could only be born through affliction and discomfort.

If I had continued to run from suffering and pain, I would have been bypassing the life I needed to grow into. I would have not discovered the version of me I am today. Life is found in the moment. Avoiding the painful moments of my life, was a diversion from Life itself.

Embracing my pain allowed me to embrace Life. 

Understanding that nothing is forever, not even my pain, allows me to be truly grateful for the joys I experience. I seek to love each and every moment without attachment. Even the hard ones I can give love and grace to, for they are not forever. I surrender my future life, what I envision it will look like, who will be in it, where I will live or work. I drop all expectations. I set intentions and give vision to my life, but let go of any predictions on how this will come to fruition or who it will embody.

My energy shifts out of alignment when I become too attached to someone or some goal.

 I trust that Life is conspiring for me, not against me. I am open, present, and aware of any gifts; whether they are people, circumstances, or visions. I focus on my intentions and the moments of my Life. My intention is love (I feel it is for many of us), but I have let go of what love looks like.

I don’t dismiss something, whether it’s a circumstance, job, or person, if it isn’t designed as I conceptualized. Life knows better than I do. I trust Life and my circumstances. What was once seen as bad luck or worst case scenario has lead to the creation of my dream job and fairy-tale relationship. Ultimately, I realize relationships are my greatest teacher.

Divine partners often come in a different form than envisioned, but are attached to a relationship that has more depth than we can imagine. Relationships are our greatest chance to unlock real love and healing from within. 

When a relationship involves a partner who is wholly committed to the process, the relationship challenges growth and heals wounds created from unmet needs. With this real transformation occurs. This requires radical acceptance, grace, and humility. 

I have begun to awaken my love for Life itself. 

Love is an inside job, it is not dependent on person, place or thing. I do not need love, I am the love. The only way to manifest love is to give love. I start with loving and accepting myself, my feelings, and continue to become aware of the beautiful life that unfolds from this one intention. Love awakens more love. 

When I choose to love and accept myself, I form a deep connection within me to Life itself.

From the foundation of this bond my other relationships have the ability to flourish. I set boundaries and release unhealthy lifestyles and relationships. My Life is dedicated to grace, growth, and love. The things that no longer serve for the positive evolution of my soul are released in love. 

Let go of fear and fall in love with Life. No one can take what you freely give. 

Step with me into the unknown, experience life, and it will give you the power and confidence to become you.

This is my intention and my prayer for myself.

Until I am compelled to write again,

Elizabeth xo

 

 

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