When I first decided I wanted to get to know myself, I had the hardest time figuring out where to start. I mean, of course, I know me. I’ve always KNOWN who I am, who I belong to, what I believe in, etc. But what I did not know, well, what I chose not to know, were the difficult things that came with me. Yes, I made a conscious choice to tell myself, “This is the way we are, if they don’t like it, TOUGH COOKIE.” & you know in retrospect, that philosophy kept me safe. I was able to navigate my way through life, but there was one question I had a hard time answering.
I remember being in the sixth grade and very emotional. For some reason, I was crying. I have no idea why, but my Daddy says to me “Why are you crying? You have everything that you want and need.” Now, I’ve spent a great deal of my life engaged in meaningful conversation. So when my father says this, I’m not confused, I know exactly what he’s asking, I just don’t know where to start. I never did give Daddy an answer that day. It was at that moment, I made my first subconscious decision to bottle it all up and carry it with me.
So here I am..years later, in my home, trying to figure out, “Are you truly happy?” What I came up with shook me to my core. I wasn’t happy! Here I was, physically well, materialistically sound, independent in every aspect of the word, and I was unhappy. 🤯 I had spent so much time carrying too many things from my past. Many of those things I never spoke aloud. Throw in the hurt and anger that my younger self couldn’t seem to shake and there you have…the title for this post. It was in that moment I decided enough was enough. I decided that I wanted to live.
Here’s a scenario: You’re a gardener. WORLD-RENOWNED. At some point your plants stop growing and you have to figure out how to save your babies! What do you do first? Change the soil? Adjust the amount of sunlight? Provide more water? These are all viable options to reset growth. That’s the beauty of gardening, there’s always room for trial and error.
Listen, changing your thought process after years of working within that mindset is HARD. Seriously, it’s hard to undo what’s seems to have always worked. But, as I mentioned previously when the plants stop growing…you have to figure out why.
“The success of a seed depends solely on the environment in which it is planted.”—Unknown
What type of environment do you truly thrive in? Do you throw yourself into work and the daily hustle and bustle? Maybe you’re super available to everyone in your life and your problems just have to wait? Whatever moves you, is your environment. Life comes with trauma and if you’re not careful, you will find yourself living in a constant state of survival. The word trauma triggers many different types of emotions. That word can take your mind to several places fast, so allow me to provide context. Did you know that any event that negatively impacts your life is labeled as trauma? See, that’s not so daunting. It can be as simple as moving from your childhood home and missing that established routine, or it can be as detailed as losing a loved one. Trauma is anything you experience that requires a response pattern to cope. Here’s the thing about patterns, once you become aware, you become responsible. So once I truly sat down and assessed the most uncomfortable past scenarios and all of the emotions that came with that, I realized that my pattern of block and delete was an environment. It kept me moving. It also kept me from truly connecting with others, but most importantly, it kept me from my authentic self. Like I said, I was safe, but I wasn’t happy. I was in defense mode constantly and that’s just not a good environment to prosper in.
I want to pause here and make something clear. There is nothing wrong with removing yourself from situations that are uncomfortable for you. What’s wrong is when you do not stop to ask yourself, if the situation is uncomfortable or if your insecurities are so loud that you feel the need to run? Healing is not linear, there are good days, bad days, & the occasional meh days—just to keep it spicy. It’s truly up to you to ask those hard questions and get to the root of what’s stopping the plants from growing. I want to leave you with the following quote:
“When you have learned all you need to learn from a particular pattern, thank it and move on. It helped you survive, but it’s no longer your only option.” —Maryam Hasnaa
I learned that it’s okay to remove myself from anything that does not assist in the garden, however, it’s not okay to not fully explore why that option cannot work. I’ve survived this long, so now it’s time to live and smell the sunflowers. I plan to continue to greet my past experiences with love and care in hopes of creating new patterns that will serve me well. I strongly encourage you to do the same. Give yourself grace and understanding. We’re all just doing the best that we can.
I hope you have an amazing week and be sure to get those prize-winning plants all the help they need. Take care!