Hello Dahlings! I’m back! I have a breakthrough to share that I hope will help you too.
I grew up in a religion and a home where I received messages of scarcity and struggle related to all good things. I would hear scripture stories when people would pray and struggle desperately for days and nights on end to receive inspiration, I lived in a home where approval and affection was withheld from some and contingent on good behavior and obedience. As I observed these things and endured abuse, I started to conflate piety and blessings with struggle. Abundance of any kind seemed contingent on hard difficult work which I might not have the capacity, discipline, endurance or talent for. Good things and God’s true acceptance could only rightfully come to those who had “endured to the end” toiling endlessly, sweat blood and tears. Literally. This didn’t stack up even doctrinally, it didn’t seem to apply to those around me but I felt literally blocked from success and peace.
When good things happened easily for me or unexpectedly arrived (as they have all my life) I felt undeserving of them and waited for them to be snatched away from me. I could never take any kind of satisfaction in any of my accomplishments. I finished a Business degree witha 4.0 GPA while full time mothering 4 kids aged 8 and under and holding down several side hustles. So what. Big deal. It wasn’t a PhD was it? I ran a marathon. Well whatever, I had become injured and my time was rubbish. It wasn’t a super-marathon. I had five beautiful, kind healthy accomplished kids who loved and respected one another? A successfully marriage to a good man who adored me? Well clearly that was in spite of me not because of me. I had no part to play in that. Those kids had in fact transcended my awful mothering. That man was inexplicably deluded to love me.
Do you know where I heard that exact phrase about the kids being good in spite of rather than because of me? From my own mom. Instead of it being the compliment to her own 5 kids she may have thought it was, it had merely taught me the same. That I’m not good enough as a mother a role to which I had diligently, lovingly and enthusiastically devoted my whole life to. I can’t actually have been a good mom. I’m just freakishly undeservingly lucky. And soon the universe would figure it out and balance the scales with all the horror and hardship I really deserved.
I was always keeping a tally, reminding myself of the bad things which had happened to me, so maybe just maybe I wouldn’t have my loved ones snatched away. I lived in a constant state of anxiety of being in debt to the world to a universe which required suffering in greater measure to joy and abundance while simultaneously feeling like I was never doing enough to live up to my potential which I had been blessed with. It’s an impossible conundrum. I felt paralyzed by my gifts and potential, sure I was squandering both. Despite my ambition and desires my sense of unworthiness was actually leading me to actively fear success and block it accordingly.
I have always been someone who was open to seeing signs or as Mormons call them “promptings” from the other side. I have mentioned that even as a very young child, I did feel seen and held most of the time by a kind and benevolent force which assured me that I was loved and worthy and not deserving of the abuse I received and that I would transcend what had happened to me and be able to help others. When this didn’t happen in the manner and on the timeline I imagined, when my struggles related to trauma dragged on for years before I was properly diagnosed; before I was ready to acknowledge my childhood abuse and separate those action from who I was, and what I deserved; I felt enormous guilt and endless frustration. I wasn’t working hard enough clearly. I wasn’t fulfilling my divinely appointed missions. I could never give myself sufficient grace or credit for a single thing.
Instead, I relied heavily on external validation which was so fleeting and never felt real. Anything good or praise worthy I did felt very fraudulent or not worthy of praise or credit. I was always striving, insecure and often jealous. Such an exhausting way to live, so hard on relationships and such toxic messages for my kids to subconsciously absorb.
In addition to years of therapy for complex PTSD, I have been relentlessly diligent in my mental health habits, exercise, breathing, meditation and journaling in the last couple of years and particularly this last year. I have been able to withstand many triggers without a full spiral and even graduated therapy due the unexpected loss of my therapist without sliding back into the grips of C-PTSD. Once again, I have started to notice being held by the universe. This time through guidance of what I call Patterns. Almost every day I receive a message or a theme from at least 2-3 different sources. The themes are really obvious, not easily explained away by me trying to massage them into something that fits, (even though I’m really talented at turning almost anything into an analogy).
Here are a few very recent examples from the top of my head: The author I was listening to had been in a bad space and had a quiet moment to meditate before returning to work. She received peace and set some new intentions. As she entered a meeting with her employees she found that they were immediately reflecting the intentions she had set back to her. I didn’t know what she meant or find the story particularly inspiring to be honest; but I guess the concept stayed in my mind. Coincidentally (not) later that day I stumbled up a guided meditation where I was invited to set intentions, I set an intention in my journal using a few specific words. Directly after this I opened another notebook with prompts I use, and found that the message that day was in direct support of what I had said I wanted to do. I smiled to myself at the affirmation. Later that day as I was driving with a friend, she piped up, “you know you are so good at helping people and the world and she went on to use the specific words I had written down in my journal that morning. My eyes filled with tears as I told her about the concept of mirroring and that she had used the exact words I had written that morning when I described the way in which I wanted to be of service to the world that day.
These affirmations have become a predictable part of my morning routine. I am no longer surprised by the daily patterns. Another random example: I wrote in the last line of my morning pages with some frustration, “I need to figure out how to…” as I opened my notebook of messages directly after I wrote this, I read “you don’t need to figure anything out! Just take the next step in front of you” I laughed out loud at this immediate response.
When I felt myself worried and sad for a child of mine yesterday, I almost instantly felt the calming and grounding impression that this child was greatly loved by the universe and that I wasn’t alone in supporting and helping them. I was reminded that I could just hold my child in love and that the same love and concern I had for this child was shared by the forces I had felt comforting and guiding me . Within minutes an affirmation from an app I had downloaded sprang up with the words, “Angels, Ancestors and Spirit Guides Are Always At Hand: I do not Walk Alone” and I felt affirmation of that impression and could relax into just surrounding my child with unconditional love.
I consider these patterns a sign of the great abundance of help and gifts the universe is anxious to bestow on me and all of us. They are helping to reset my belief system into truly believing that help, love and assistance is not something we have to beg and plead and cry and work for endlessly. You guys I literally developed a praying injury once from kneeling to pray so much; and I honestly do not remember receiving easy clear inspiration during that earnest and anxious time. I was trying way too hard. It was unnecessary and it was blocking me. As well as causing me a knee injury. All I had to do was be still and open to receive.
I’ve started to think a lot lately about how we receive. For me it’s easy to imagine my relationship with the universe as something akin to my relationship with my beloved kids. I think of how much I enjoy giving my kids gifts and how I go about bestowing things upon them. Naturally I do not want to give them stuff they don’t like or won’t use or something that might give them only fleeting satisfaction and then end up as clutter or waste. I trust my kids which is why I ask them tell me exactly what they want. Down to the colour and style so that I can fulfill their wish lists. I want to give them what they truly want not what I think they want. I think the universe is very much the same .It loves us and wants to get it right for us. We participate not by begging and pleading but by getting our clear about our desires. Write it down. Be specific. When my kids come complaining to me that they are hungry and I ask them what they want to eat but they can’t tell me I usually tell them to go away and come back when they know. I think the Universe operates similarly. It wants us to know what we are hungry for, what we are passionate about what we really want. That’s when it starts clearing the path for us.
With my younger daughter Ella, I notice which toys she really engages with. Things that bring her great joy and which hold her attention longer than a few fleeting moments before the novelty wears off. When she is happy and creatively stimulated and satisfied with a particular toy, I’m far more inclined to treat her to more of it. When she cares for those toys, keeps them safe and keeps them organized and cherished, she shows me that she is equipped to take care of them and can have a larger collection. When she is genuinely thrilled and grateful I see that by giving her another doll in that collection I’m adding to her quality of life rather than just acquiescing to her demands and spoiling her. Do you see the difference? When I give her stuff she whines on a whim to shut her up, that’s not good parenting. That doesn’t enhance her joy or quality of life. This is how I understand how the universe deals with giving us things. I have started to become very specific about what I want, why I want it, how I think it will enhance my life and bless the lives of others. I have started to also notice abundance that comes to me and recognize what a miracle it is and allow myself to be fully happy and delighted I banish thoughts of unworthiness when I receive nice things. I am equally worthy of nice things and good feelings as any other person alive and so are you! There is plenty of happiness, health, love, opportunity and money to go around and around forever. I have also become more careful with treating my body, my possessions, my spaces, my family, my friends, my sense of peace with more care and respect showing them how much I cherish them. I know that my disciplines make me feel better each day so I do them even if I don’t feel like it in the moment because I truly believe that I deserve to feel good. And so do you.
While life is all too often extremely hard, tragic, painful, irritating and events do constantly occur outside of our control, good things are always abundant. Always. Even in the midst of all that. Even during my darkest moments. The universe is endlessly abundant and I no longer believe that it ever withholds. It’s a Giver. We only have to ask. No prayer injuries necessary. No blood sweat and tears. Just faith in our worthiness, noticing and cherishing what we receive, expressions of joy and gratitude and using our gifts and happiness to contribute to the greater good. We can accomplish so much more with so much more ease than I have ever allowed myself to believe. It’s so much more simple than I ever believed. Even in the year 2020. Even for me. And for you.