I know my titles must mystify some of you. What the fuck is she talking about now?
I was working out the other day and the thought came to me that I never really thought about myself - my life, my body, my soul, my mind as something that was a prized possession. Although, I am pretty sure that they possess me, never mind, you get my drift...
It struck me that I came into this world perfect. We all do. Even if we have physical or mental challenges, I believe we all arrive here perfectly formed and good. And then life gets lifey and does what it does.
Disappointment...likely more than many
Insecurities...likely many more than many
Loss...hopefully less of those
And somehow in all that life happening to us, we get lost. Or rather I got lost. Somehow I got the message with all of that life happening that I was bad, wrong, no good, ugly, fat, a disappointment and I began to make decisions about my life based on those erroneous conclusions my child’s mind concocted.
And so raged a war within that continues from that day to this.
I struggled with my mental health. I struggled to get sober. I struggled with my body and hated it and treated it accordingly. I struggled in relationships. And all of that struggle caused me to need a drink at like 6, I mean I waited until 12 and that was a rough six years, let me tell you.
So I was running the other day at the gym. Working out and taking care of myself and it occurred to me, this very simple thought that our main journey in life is to make peace with that mass of no longer blank slated clay within us. To do what we can to smooth over all the life marks in it and love it all the same.
I think about myself and my life very differently now. And because I do, I take care of myself very differently now.
I sleep eight hours every night (well unless there is a full moon and then my sleeps get whack).
I eat a clean diet with good, whole foods for the most part.
I exercise daily.
I think of my body as a temple, instead of the prison I used to feel trapped in.
I take care of my mental health and attend to it daily.
I have a spiritual life today that is deeply important to me and I work hard to maintain it daily.
When I was younger, I felt like clay that had been marred, etched and left out over night. I lost that malleability. I was hardened by life and all its lifey things. But somehow over the course of my life time, I was able to turn all those things that hardened me into this angry, inflexible, shadow of who I could be...and I changed. I lost my rigidity. I grew in acceptance for all my flaws and began to see them very differently. I worked out what I could and dug up some love for the parts of me that were a bit more persistent.
As I am running, taking care of myself in body, mind and spirit, I felt like I was living out a destiny. That my whole purpose in being born in the first place was to come here and live this life and to do it as well as possible. To take care of my vessel (body), to nurture my mind, to listen to my soul and its calling. To spend quality time with myself and grow this deep seated connection found far inside me. In short, what I realized while running at the gym was that I was living out my purpose...to love this me that is here with all that I am. To enjoy myself while doing my best to find humility. I am not the best anything, with one exception...me.
My only job in this life is to actualize my fullest potential as a woman, mother, worker, human, writer, sober person. I am here to grow myself (with a great deal of help and assistance) into the best version of me that I possibly can. Not so that I get to have a better life, no there are millions (likely billons) of people out there attempting to grow their life up and then keep it to themselves. That is misuse of purpose from where I sit. Instead I believe that all our purposes is to come into this world as the blank slated clay we are born into and then sculpt that into the best version of us we can. And we do this so that we may serve others, and in so doing, we become kinder, softer, more loving, more present and more alive. And the byproduct of that is that our lives become more amazing and wonderful. Not because we are so focused on us but because we pay ourselves enough of the right kind of attention and love to take the raw materials we are provided in this life, and all the lifey stuff that happens along the way, and flower into being the best, most imperfect perfection that is us.
It struck me with each footfall, how very lost I was for most of my life. Not making time for myself, allowing the pursuit of things, jobs, men, booze, escape, friends, all these outside things to consume me to the point I barely existed at all. And the whole time, it would seem that my only mission in this life was to learn how to love the skin I am in, the person who inhabits the interior of me and to grow that up so that I can be of some use to others.
And as I ran, I realized that somehow without me even knowing it, I was there, doing just that. Taking care of me. Loving her. Treating her with respect and dignity. And because I could care for me, my capacity to care for others expanded exponentially.
It was a heady moment on the treadmill that day. I felt alignment with my body, my mind and my spirit while also feeling a kinship and love with all of you. It changed me. Rounding out more of those stubborn, sharp pointy edges once more and reminding me that I just get this life that is happening right here...this life. This is what I have to work with living in this body, with this mind, and this amazing spirit that resides inside me.
And for the first time ever, I knew that it was my job, my purpose to do the very best I can with all that I have been given, worked for, blessed with. And for that moment, I felt like everything that has come to pass and all that will has been worth the hardship and pain. To arrive at this place where I am running on a treadmill at a gym and feel like I have made good use of the blank slated clay I was given. And understanding that I am enough, I have enough, this life is enough...what matters most is what I do with me.