Friday, May 31, 2013

Love Heals

What do you think of when you think of the healing process? Does some beautiful  light-filled vision enter your mind? ...or, does a long, painful, and sometimes scary process emerge?

Sure, healing is a beautiful process; however, it can also be incredibly difficult. Sometimes things look worse before they get better. Sometimes they hurt more intensely than when the wound was initially inflicted. Sometimes you feel weaker before you get stronger. 

Sometimes healing looks like you're completely falling apart when in actuality, you're putting the pieces together in a whole new way.

How many of us have been building defense mechanisms for years to avoid getting hurt? We carefully laid bricks of friendly looking detachment and avoidance or abrasive anger and indifference so no one could ever get near, but at some point, we find those bricks are starting to cave in on us. 

What once kept us safe is now what's beginning to crush and suffocate what we were protecting-- ourselves. 

There comes a point when we have to make a decision; continue trying to build walls that are preventing the very things we want most to get in because we keep clinging to the fact that they used to keep us safe, or gather every bit of courage we have and start disassembling years of defenses knowing that that's the only way we can even begin to heal those years of heartache and be open to the incredible joy life has to offer.

The last few months have been continually new revelations of just how much I've been holding back and pushing away, because due to the unexpected arrival of an incredibly kind and patient someone, I've had to face that I never fully bought into my belief that love heals. Until now.

I didn't realize that I was still nursing so many of my old wounds because instead of letting them heal, I tried to pretend they didn't exist. Denial was easy when I wasn't allowing anyone close enough to challenge me.

For the most part, it has been a happy process, but, there are some days when my fears get the best of me and I want to bolt back into my old comfortable crumbling walls. I have moments of complete and utter panic because, "what if I foolishly step outside of my walls and get hurt in the same stupid ways all over again? What if my half-stitched scars get torn open?"

Necessary and amazing as it is, there are times when it's uncomfortable, awkward, difficult and sometimes flat out embarrassing. It would be easier to keep avoiding it all, but then, what kind of profoundly life-changing depth and meaning would I miss out on because I was too afraid to be vulnerable enough to heal?

Day by day, fear by fear, he's helping me to learn how to trust and step out of the walls that were keeping me from experiencing a sacred part of life that I hoped existed, but didn't really believe in, or at least, didn't believe would exist for me.

Thankfully, love heals whether I always believe it or not.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Blood and Water (part 2)

How do you know when to hold on or let go? 

 For the last 10 years, I've been pursing communication with my biological family in hopes of meeting them one day. Sporadic emails over time seemed to be leading up to that point until a few months ago when I received the translation of my father's most recent email that may change the course of everything... 

I tried to write about it all just days after, but found I had to walk away from it all for a while. I had no answers, and still don't; however, one thing I've learned through this process is that the possibility exists that perhaps all of that searching was just to find that I no longer needed to be searching

I have people that love me, want me in their lives, and will make every effort to be in contact with me regardless of how busy they are. Why should I continue chasing after a "family" that would easily fall away as soon as I cease to make any effort? 

Sure, people have their arguments that I need to find my roots, and I agree to a point; however, not everyone's story is the same. Perhaps, just perhaps, it's ok if my roots were transplanted and I'm happy with where I'm grounding now.

Many of us have the driving need to have closure to every situation, but life doesn't always give us the closed ending for which we hope. Sometimes we have to learn to be ok with an outcome that ends with an ellipses instead of a period.

In this case, for now, I'm letting it go. I have the opportunity to build a family here with people I love and who love me in return. After a decade of chasing what's left me continually feeling confused, drained and empty, I'd rather pour myself into what will contribute to making my life happy and full.

Maybe one day I'll resume pursing my bloodline, or maybe I'll find that what I have here is enough in and of itself. 

"The old saying goes that we all have two families—the one we’re born with, and the one we find along the way. For some of us, the family we’ve found is everything, and enough."
(From the article: My Modern Family)

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Very Inspiring Blogger Award

I woke up today to the unexpectedly pleasant surprise of having received the "Very Inspiring Blogger Award" from When In New Places. Quite serendipitous to have an expat living in Korea teaching English randomly connect with me, no? 

The rules of accepting the Very Inspiring Blogger Award are:

  1. Display the Award Certificate on your website.
  2. Announce your win with a post and link to whoever presented you with the award.
  3. Present 15 awards to deserving bloggers.
  4. Drop them a comment to tip them off after you have linked them in the post.
  5. Post 7 interesting things about yourself.
And now to pass on the honor:

Unfortunately, I'm apparently kinda lame, and I only have 9. Please feel free to suggest other awesome blogs that I should check out sometime. ^_^

Seven Interesting Things About Myself:
1. I was imported from Seoul, Korea.
2. Once upon a time I used to (try to) spin fire.
3. I'm a giant nerd at heart. (Lord of the Rings, anyone?)
4. Internationally, I've traveled to Ireland, Italy, Belize and Kenya.
5. I'm not satisfied with #4 and have a pretty wicked case of wanderlust.
6. In my past lives I've been a barista, bartender, server, fitness counselor, logistics management specialist, yoga teacher and an intern counselor.
7. In spite of #6, I still have no idea what I want to be when I grow up.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

That Month Long Gap

It's been awhile since my last post, huh? 

It certainly hasn't been for the lack of thoughts and ideas. I just haven't known how to verbalize any of them. Some of them have been too heavy for me to carry, so I let them go for now... 

During lunch with a friend several weeks ago, we discussed our concern for having not been doing the things we love- for her photography and me writing. 

"What's up with that?? I feel as though I'm losing some of myself, " she mused. 

I agreed and wondered why I hadn't been able to spit a single word out in weeks in spite of having so much to say. 

After a few moments of considering our dilemma, I wondered if maybe times that feel "dry" or "blocked" are actually a necessary part of our creative process. Perhaps sometimes we need to step back from whatever our craft is, regardless of how much we love it, to give ourselves time to rest, process, and allow new inspiration to find its way into our lives without us feeling as though we need to control how it enters and in what way. 

Maybe what appears to be lacking is actually finding new depth through a necessary hiatus from directly working and allowing ourselves to just do what seems right for the time even when it seems to be the opposite of what we think we should be doing.

That said, hopefully after a month of silence, some of the words that have been pent up will find a coherent way to assemble themselves into expression.