Transition is tough. If you’re a human being, chances are you’ve experienced transition and all that it entails. It’s beautiful, necessary, hard, and can tear you apart. I am a mother of two beautiful humans under 4 years old and recently moved from Maryland to Pennsylvania, Maryland being my home for 29 years (I am 30). Though this move is something that I have wanted for a quite some time, it doesn’t change how difficult it is. Anyone who is a parent can probably understand that moving with small children, or children period, is a challenge. There is a long list of things that presented themselves in the face of our family’s move from Baltimore to the greater Philadelphia area. But I have to say that the most challenging thing of all for me personally was all that came up in regards to my self-worth and self-love… or lack-there-of.
As a mother, yogi, wife, daughter, daughter-in-law, professional woman, sister, sister-in-law, granddaughter, niece, neighbor, teacher, steward of planet earth, etc. it is all too easy to become lost in other folk’s expectations and ideas about who I am and who I should be. I have come to realize that this is my work throughout this time of transition—finding clarity in who I am and my purpose, knowing my truth, feeling it to be true and acting from this place as often as I can. It is really easy for me to get caught up in who any of those folks think I am or should be, even if it isn’t who I am and want to be. It’s because I love these people, right? Right. However, this is where it always gets hairy for me. I notice that I act in some way that is not true to who I am in order to please those people I love, and then become resentful of situations or people. I recognize this and know the emotions and feelings that come up when I am in this predicament. And here is where the work comes into place.
The first thing is to stop the mind-chatter and the negative self-talk. I do this a number of ways- taking a walk, listening to music, getting on my yoga mat, talking it out with Andrew (my hubby and soulmate), or just sitting with what is. These practices are instrumental as they help me recognize patterns in my behavior that are not so ideal. When I am able to recognize them with as little judgement as possible, I can start to detach from them. I begin to realize that it is a choice to break away from these patterns next time I am in a similar situation.
Next is reconnecting with my truth, my source of power and self-love. You know that feeling you get when you feel intensely inspired? I know you know what I am talking about. It is that feeling that hits you right in your core, your 3rd Chakra. It’s that feeling that makes you want to get up and take action, to use your voice and wake-up each day. This is your intuition. And I know it when I feel it. Sure, sometimes it is all mucked up and clouded. In fact, often it is mucked-up and clouded. But still it is there. This is what I look for; or rather feel for when I am reconnecting with my truth.
But it is not so simple. Actually, it is rarely so simple. I am writing a blog post, so of course it comes off neat and in-place. However, most of the time it is not. I come about this by first going through what feels like hell inside myself. I often feel angry, then resentful, then heavy and exhausted. Two sayings that remind me during these times—“if you’re going through hell, don’t stop” and “holding onto anger or resentment is like holding a hot coal and expecting the other person to get burned.” If I can quickly recognize this stage, I can quickly pull away and change how I respond (or not). But it still takes a ton of work to pull away from what is draining me (which can feel like magnetism). And this is where I am.
I believe transition is obligatory in human life. We all experience it from some degree or another, whether by choice or not. Regardless of how it happens, if we look at it as an opportunity for growth, then growth shall happen. Perhaps it is even an opportunity for healing, as it has been for our family. This transition for me has shaken everything up, leaving me ungrounded. But with this, there is an opportunity to redefine my footing and perhaps surf the unstable waters beneath me for a while until I settle into a new rhythm, letting go of that which is no longer serving me along the way.
I am no master. I am not seeking to obtain “enlightenment” in this life. My goals are to be the best mother, yogi, wife, daughter, daughter-in-law, professional woman, sister, sister-in-law, granddaughter, niece, neighbor, teacher, steward of planet earth, etc.; but most importantly, my goal is to dig deep, and love myself. For, in cultivating a truly loving and nurturing relationship with me, I can confidently shine my light onto others, especially and most importantly, my children. I can guide them mindfully. I can break away from society-imposed parenting and parent from a place of truth and love. I can stand against odds and rise above negativity. To any other parents out there who may be reading this- this is the most important job- knowing ourselves and the world around us and sharing this wholeheartedly with our tiny humans. In the words of musical artists Wookiefoot, “The earth is not given to you by your parents; it is loaned to you by your children’s children.”
With so much love.