Pondering at 3 a.m.

At 3 a.m. this morning I was pondering the following…

Sitting at a crossroads. Your world has just crashed down around you. When the dust settles there has emerged two big shards that resemble paths. Each one reveals a choice.

One shard shines brightly in the middle to far distance. It offers a promise of a life well lived. Growth, change, showing up as your true authentic self. Vulnerable but with solid boundaries.

Although bright, those shards are extremely sharp, full of splinters and require conscious navigation. To pick that one requires hard work. Knowing with that commitment to do the work you will feel suffering. It’s painful as you look at things head-on and then do what is required to live the life you want to live. To be the person you want to be.

The other shard is smoother. Worn down to a pleasant sheen, some rough splinters, but they are easy to spot. That path entices you with the status quo. The worn out cushion and pillow that provides the comfort of sameness. The only work it requires if you choose it is that you’ll experience life as you know it. That can also be painful because you have chosen to commit to the way things are in your life.  You choose this because your habits, even if destructive at times can be comforting, even if the comfort is only for a moment.

Change can be scary. For some its that fear that keeps them comfortable in staying the course. Not easy, but comfortable. The habits of the mind, body, and soul are hard to break.

But, maybe behind you in the distance, a third shard has fallen and the crossroads has now offered another choice. Maybe there is a grayer, hazier choice. It has both the sharp shards of change to navigate and the rounder smoother call of status quo. Perhaps a middle way.

Could that be a possibility?  Maybe that’s the path that is more realistic and recognizes the personness in all of us? Perhaps, in reality, that is the path most of us are on. Weaving in and out of the need to change and the pull of status quo.

Maybe we don’t need to pick one or the other. Perhaps we pick all three of them. Take the time to rest on each one, to recognize our growth and reassess what and if we need to change.

I don’t know the answers…after all, it’s 3 a.m. and I probably should be sleeping.

When you experience your crossroads, which path do you choose? Or are you a traveler in life who can navigate all three?

image source: Pexels

Thank you for reading my books: If I Could Tell You How It Feels, and Untangled, A Story of Resilience, Courage, and Triumph      

Choices! Lessons from Healing and Growth

One of the best and often frustrating lessons that have unfolded from my journey of healing is that I learned I can make choices. Seems like a no-brainer, right?  I could talk the talk, especially whenever drama was involved, but to actually understand that I can make choices about my life was a concept that was a little unconscious for me. This is difficult to admit, but I’m thinking this may be a recurring issue in some people’s lives. Especially those of us who are healing from trauma. 

I became aware that I can choose to be around people who are working or living towards self-discovery or I can choose to be around people who are satisfied to live with their eyes shut; unwilling to change, grow, and understand that in our world we need compassion and connectedness, not separateness and silence. I can choose to have the people in my life who aren’t toxic, and who want to walk that transformational self-discovery path that leaves you winded at times. 

I can choose to say what I think about a situation or give my opinion about what is happening in our country, our world.

I can choose to add to a conversation knowing that I’m not taking away from that person’s moment, but that instead I may be adding to their moment and a deep and like-minded dialogue can occur.  

I can choose to set boundaries with people. I can give my opinion, I can stick up for myself, I can say no, I can say yes, I can ask for what I want and what I think I need, and I can feel okay about asking for those things. I understand that I may not always get my needs met, but I learned I can never get them met if I don’t ask. That lesson took me right out of that “victimy” role, I would sometimes find myself in.

I know the above may seem basic and rudimentary but for me, they were new concepts. I learned to make choices before the drama occurs. I don’t have to be afraid of who I am, or what I have to say.

I definitely was not a withering wallflower before, it’s just that now, I’m much more authentic and less afraid to be vulnerable. I found that I’m more likely to attract a group of people who are just as willing to be authentic and vulnerable as I have become, and have been able to let go of the ones who used their narcissism to get their own needs met at the expense of others. 

I knew this all along….I would have told any of my friends, my kids, my husband, or strangers that we all have the ability to makes these choices. I would have said to anyone…be authentic, be vulnerable, take a risk, take a chance. It’s amazing how I can look back and say “Whoa, I used to do that?” I used to be so afraid of what others may think of me, or worse, be someone I wasn’t, because I was afraid people wouldn’t like the real me and run away. In truth, the opposite happened. My friendships, and relationships are much more satisfying now than they were eight years ago.

I will admit, there are times, I still get sucked in and find myself in a situation where I need to change or create a boundary. But that’s okay, it’s all a process and a practice.  The practice of living an authentic, connected and compassionate life.

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image source: Pixabay

Thank you for reading my memoir, Untangled, A Story of Resilience, Courage, and Triumph

http://www.amazon.com/Untangled-story-resilience-courage-triumph/dp/1514213222

https://www.amazon.com/Untangled-story-resilience-courage-triumph-ebook/dp/B013XA4856