At the forefront of most of our lives is our inner critic, we don’t realize how much power we have given it. For as long as I can remember gave it the keys to the car. The voices of our parents and how they spoke to or about us gets stored away in this massive and elaborate library. The bullies in school who said or did things to us gets filed appropriately in that section labeled Not good enough. Without knowing or acknowledging it, we are constantly checking out books from our inner critic. Using it to stop us from doing something, taking chances or creating and believing in ourselves.
I knew about mine and I was on the road to overcoming it. I was able to acknowledge when it would appear, I faced it, I spoke to it, I sometimes yelled at it. But that sneaky little asshole decided to be smarter and more clever than me. It knew I had learned how to fight inside my head, but while I was doing that, it was making friends in the real world, inviting these people that would sneakily take the temporary space of distraction.
I was now not expressing myself, it was telling me to shut up and close up. Not share because I might damage something. It was telling me it wasn’t worth the fight. My artistic voice is directly connected to my life journeys and I vowed to never surround myself with people that would suppress my voice.
My story was reduced to grief, tears strolled down my face at any given moment for any reason and I no longer had any words to describe it. I was no longer able to share my story because how do you share a tear, a feeling if you have no words. I had been overtaken by emotion, lost and unable to function creatively. What I was able to do was stay sober, to work on what was in front of me and continue to have faith that this was all just part of my journey, and parts of it I will hate at times.
I have lost the relationship with a few friends and family since my journey began and I realized I never grieved. I want to talk about The first time I did and the worst time it could have happened to me.
June 26th or 27th, I’m unsure because of the time zone I was in at the time. I had just left NY and without going into details my relationship with my mother started to deteriorate at around day 18 in NY, by the time we were at the airport I couldn’t really describe the feeling I had, except to say that maybe it was relief. By the time I was in DOHA, Qatar for my 10-hour layover I was in full-blown grief. Like I had lost someone to death, I cried in front of the people at the check-in counter and I sat in a restaurant eating and drinking complimentary food and coffee courtesy of Qatar Airways because I was so sad. I was flooded with years of childhood grief about how my parents must have hated me if they could speak about me in the ways they do. I was in an airport in the middle of the world, I had little in my bank and I was on this new journey all on faith once again. No one warned me about grief, had I avoided it all my life. Did I convince myself that all feelings needed words and to be talked about. I believe that whatever wall was protecting me had crumbled and left me more vulnerable than I have ever been in my entire life. FUCK! I did not want to be feeling this all alone in an airport.
My faith was now having a conversation with the part of me that needed to know what the future held, what my purpose in life was. I was angry, lonely and ‘Lost in DOHA’. I survived and I finally made it back to Bali, my eyes were puffy, I had acne and my legs and feet were so swollen that I thought I had developed a blood clot. I got massages for the next 3 days and tried to distract myself with my project but I was not sleeping very well and my leg hurt so much from just a touch. My grieving was not only pouring out emotionally but I believe it was leaving every inch of my body, and the pain for both was excruciating. I have never experienced anything like it.
So where am I now?. I’m better physically, I don’t know when the pain all left but it has. Emotionally I’m still triggered and I know recovery and my 12 steps will help but I may need to really research trauma therapy, luckily for me, I have a good friend who has stood by my side that knows all about that. Am I ready, I don’t know but I know SHUTTING UP is not the way to heal. It has never been for me. And I do believe we are given only what we can handle, so I guess I’m ready for this.
Now for the GOOD. Well, vulnerability is not always liked but it’s good and the other areas are doing great. I have a partnership that I feel appreciates my qualities and respects the work I do. I also feel that I have an amazing opportunity to learn more about areas I avoided all my life, I don’t feel like I’m in a box and unable to grow. I get to prove my honesty and show my commitment and character and be judged on what is seen and not heard.
So how do I recover now? I will take the first step knowing I am now recovering and healing my creative self again. Acknowledging that it is a very important part of my healing. I will remember that my voice is not just mine and that someone else may need to hear what I have to say. If we all have gone through some sort of trauma, imagine how life would be if we could stand up to it with the help of others around us. If we were no longer afraid to face it if we had the simple acknowledgment that we were not alone.
It’s time for me to listen more to my INNER CREATIVE / INNER GENIUS instead of my Inner Critic.
Thank you for allowing me to be vulnerable with you.
Mucho Love, Jamie