This past month has been an interesting one. Things have been shifting and changing, as they always do, though this past month I’ve felt a deep cavernous yearning I hadn’t felt in a while. I wasn’t sure what that meant until a day or so ago. I had an idea pop in my head that had my heart racing, my stomach doing flips and twirls. Excitement overtook me.
I began Follow the Joy almost a year ago after having gone through many, many years of deep sadness and anger. Over 6 years ago my Mother ~ and best friend ~ died after two years of chemo and radiation (twice over), surgery, hospital negligence, left almost completely unable to speak, eat or walk after her surgery until she died… I’ll write about her and her journey one day but for today I will say that the trauma I was left with after walking along side my mother along her path; witnessing every detail of her pain, holding her hand as she left this world ~ mere months before my daughter was born ~ was life changing, heart shattering and soul shaking. The speed of which my life’s journey took the moment she died has been swift. I have been thrown into becoming. Becoming a mother. Becoming a wife. Becoming more kind. Becoming more patient. Becoming healed. Becoming wise. Becoming the person my Mother saw; the person she would call Her Angel while I cared for her during her final months here on earth.
In this becoming I realized the pain I was carrying was manifesting into great anger available at the flick of a switch. After all these years of pain I found myself one day awake. The clouds had parted and the brightness of what my future could be shone down on me waking me up to the decision that needed to be made. I could choose to continue being angry; looking for ways to justify my anger, fuel my anger, feed my anger allowing it to grow and consume my family or I could let it all go. Let it all go and choose joy. It was as easy as typing this sentence surprisingly enough, to choose joy. I knew that my pain would always live somewhere within me, my Mother died. She went through horrible, terrible things. Things I never could have imagined or prepared myself to witness. Though through it all she was Grace personified. She was kind and sweet and loving to each and every person, at every single moment along her painful and traumatic path. She became enlightened in her final days, wise beyond this world. Her essence expanded in her darkest days giving way to much beautiful, beautiful light. In realizing that I had a choice, that I didn’t need anger to breathe ~ that being angry wouldn’t heal my pain ~ I released it all and chose joy. One day at a time. My choice to Follow the Joy brought much healing and relief. I was finally able to truly see my wonderful life, to truly enjoy it.
This past month I began to learn that despite Following the Joy everyday for the last year I needed to go deeper within to look at some things that still exist that I wish to wipe away; things that don’t really belong to me. Sayings that I heard growing up, cultural views of children, reactions to what I see in front of me coated with ideas and words that come from generations past. Simple things that may not seem like much but allowing them to filter in to how I see my children and how I speak to them daily can and will become patterns and habits I wish not to keep.
So with this knowing I had the idea that for the next year of Following the Joy I am going to study myself. I am going to learn about my essence, my true essence that existed before pain, sadness and loss. Before other peoples views of the world tainted my eyes and heart. Before shame or guilt or hiding to get through a school day surrounded by other people in as much pain as I. Before being told I could or could not do something or I was too tall, too young or inexperienced or not suited for…
I am compiling a list of challenges that continue to arise despite my believing I had addressed them. I am going to spend one month per challenge, keeping it at the forefront. Diving deep into why it exists, what I can replace it with and how I can let it go. I will actively, consciously remain aware of patterns or thoughts that influence the way I react to my children during my most challenging moments.
By this time next year I will have looked deeply at where I need my most healing and will have replaced it all with unconditional love for myself and my children. Replacing these things with new words, sayings and ways of seeing of my children. It best serves me to analyze these belief systems or challenging habits, wiping the slate clean; adding something new in their place. Deschooling, deconstructing and evolving into the Mother I know I am, into the Radical Unschooler I wish to be and the Friend, Partner and Wife I strive to be.
I’m very excited to share this journey with you. I’ll be posting what I discover about the beliefs or challenges or states of mind I explore. I’m hoping that not only will I heal and grow from this work but perhaps you too can dive deeper into similar things that arise within yourself. I will post at the beginning of each month the topic I am going to dive into and what I have discovered by the end of each month.
What have you been seeing that continues to come around for you? Perhaps you thought you had figured something out but it keeps coming up, maybe when you’re tired or stressed? I’d love to hear from you and see what you are discovering about your journey as well.
With much love to you,