Getting raw, real and vulnerable scares me. I get scared to open up about my past, to throw away the curtain and let all of my flaws, demons, mistakes and faults be seen.
But it's important to be seen. I've realized that this place of vulnerability, of connection and implied trust is where the magic happens. And I don't just mean vulnerability with others – when is the last time you sat and let yourself be truly honest and open and raw with you?
The healing journey only start when we're ready to start doing the work. When we're ready to say enough is enough and to demand better from our lives. From ourselves. My journey began many years ago, and it's very much still in process. But I still have to remember to show up for myself, to be true and real with myself. And at this point, it's a gift that I get to share the pain and sorrow, as well as the triumph, joy and light of my story. From the smallest step forward on my healing journey to the incredible career I've created as an intuitive healer across different techniques and modalities... this is a part of who I am.
I experienced trauma from very early in my life. When I was 3, my older brother passed away. I’m a survivor of abuse and sexual assaults, starting from childhood and continuing into my teenage years and adulthood. Those experiences left me lost, numb and overwhelmed at times. They left me disconnected from my body and stripped of an ability to connect to and communicate my needs.
I spent most of my life believing that I was bad. Mean. Manipulative. Inherently flawed, and because of that unworthy and incapable of happy, healthy relationships. With others or with myself.
That narrative came from my family. All of our families play a role in shaping us – in positive ways and negative ones – and we play a role with our family. I was given the role of the scapegoat, the one who could be blamed for our problems and the one whose problems would be magnified and analyzed and poked at.
Damn, did that hurt.
For years, I was filled with self-hate and doubt. There was a piece of me deep down that felt I was worthy of happiness, love, quality friendships and relationships. I felt inclined to give, to help, to nurture – but I was told that I was manipulative, so I wondered if deep down I was really just trying to get something from people.
I respect and love my family, and I'm grateful for many things, but this burden I've carried is not one of them.
It was only two or three years ago that I realized that I am not a bad person. I am not inherently mean or less worthy of love. The tears flowed heavily that day, and they still come when I think about the pain that my familial role brought.
When I finally realized that this was a false burden I was carrying, I started to look at my relationship with myself. I realized I didn't like myself - much less love the person that I am. I'd been striving in external pursuits - school and work - to prove that I was worthwhile. Worth something. And at the same time I'd been abusing myself with negative self-talk, deprivation, alcohol and toxic relationships.
Again: it really hurt.
That pain dulled and faded into the background over the years. It became my normal. In my teenage years, things started to unravel. I was about 15 when I first tried yoga. It was a traditional Bikram yoga class – very intense, very hot, and it totally changed my life. From that first moment I knew there was something magical about this practice of yoga. I took more classes and as I did so I started to move things in my body – to feel those traumas and emotions which had become stored in my hips, my heart and my muscles. I began to move through these pains, and to find joy and release from my yoga practice.
There were times when the release was too much – too painful or difficult. I stayed away from classes and avoided practicing, only to find myself drawn back. I tried hot yoga, yin, ashtanga and flow classes. I stretched and flowed and observed my breathe. And I loved it.
Yoga has been – hands down – the most incredible tool for my healing journey. It has helped me reconnect to my body – the trauma and the joy, the pain and the happiness, the sorrow and the love. Yoga allows me to stay calm and grounded and to express my needs with myself and with others. That is why I decided to become a yoga teacher, and it is why I have devoted my life to learning and sharing holistic healing practices with my students and clients.
Now, several years into this journey of looking inside and reflecting on who I truly am, it's become easier to like myself. I have started to see my worth, and as I've done so the choices to treat myself with love have become easier. I love my physical body, so I move it. I love my mind, so I meditate. I love my heart and soul, so I take time to let them breathe and expand and be.
It is all a process, especially that last one. But I cannot think of more important work to be doing.
Are you ready to take your first small step? I would be honored to be your partner. Book a free 30-minute chat with me here.