I was very flattered and maybe a bit surprised when I was invited to be a part of a yearlong project of self-portraits done weekly. What lured me in was the purpose behind the project. That in doing this I am exercising nurturing self-care, acceptance, and introspection when those things can easily be lost in day-to-day life.
Forgive me for skipping details, but I found an incredible mind body therapist and have been seeing her since September. Whether you call it an issue, burden, trauma, baggage, or any other variation upon that theme, we all have it. Some more profound than others. Some heavier than others. Some so old and deeply hidden that we don’t even know it’s there. This ended up being the case for me, and I was so surprised. But sessions after session unearthed this pain, and not only have I begun to remember and feel it profoundly, but to see it’s reach in my beliefs and behavior.
This trauma stunted part of my emotional development: the part that deals with all of the negative feelings. I did not learn how to feel negative feelings in any kind of healthy way. As a 33-year-old woman, I am just now learning how to not be swept away, but to stay present when anger, frustration, sadness, or whatever it may be happens. And in staying present, that those feelings wash through you verses being stuck and harbored inside. But being late to the game is most certainly better than never.
So when I’ve thought through goals for this year (which I may write about in more depth later) and this project, the word I have clearly in my mind is “heal.”
heal verb \ˈhēl \
1a: to make free from injury or disease: to make sound or whole
b: to make well again : to restore to health
2a: to cause (an undesirable condition) to be overcome
b: to patch up or correct (a breach or division)
3: to restore to original purity or integrity
Healing is a multifaceted journey, and I’ve been implementing many tools to help me. One of these tools is visual meditation. I’ve meditated on places I’ve been, places I haven’t been, being embraced by a mothering God, inhaling color, and being filled with liquid sunshine. This morning a saw something I’d never seen before in our house. Our front doors are pebbled instead of solid glass, and something about that pebbled glass along with the perfect angle of sunlight made the most magnificent display of strips of uniting rays of light. This light felt special, like a gift just for me. When I saw this beautiful, glowing, multifaceted light, I knew this would be a stunning representation of my healing journey.
I don’t think most of my posts will be so long winded, but since this is the beginning I wanted to give it enough depth and understanding so that if you feel so led you can follow me in this journey.