Let’s travel back to 2017 when I started to notice my behaviour, my body & emotions change. I began resenting work and routine and even found myself arriving at work not knowing how I got there. I was tired, like really fucking tired! I was miserable, I had no confidence and I followed along with what was the norm in my friendship groups. I rushed to help them and my family whenever they needed me, I was always there, always available.
Don’t get me wrong I had a lot of really nice things and people in my life but I also exemplified consumerism with all this “stuff” in my life that didn’t make me happy. I wasn’t living, I was merely existing. I was looking for something, someone to make me happy and coming up with fucking nothing! I kept thinking if I worked harder, got the next promotion, earned more money I would be satisfied. I was wrong, something was wrong, really wrong. At one point I got so sick I could barely function but test results were coming back clear and my doctor was saying it was a virus. I remember saying to friends I was too sick to attend a milestone birthday for my friend. That’s how you know I was really sick, because I always showed up for my friends. I started to get anxiety and at this point I was almost in a depressed state, I didn’t want to see anyone or do anything. I hadn’t left the house in days, when a friend came and picked me up to watch a CrossFit competition at our local box. It was an effort that day just to shower but my friend knew she had to get me out of the house. Meanwhile, my other friends were really disappointed at me for not going to the birthday. They weren’t getting the msg, I was sick!
A few months later I came across a wellness retreat and thought maybe this will refresh me… So off I went. I took myself to this day retreat in Melbourne that I saw on Instagram, imagining it would have a similar affect to a day spa and that I would come away relaxed and refreshed. What I got, was so much more!
The day included Yoga (maybe my 2nd time ever doing yoga), Qigong, healthy snacks & drinks, workshops and exercises on self-reflection and I met other women who I was surprised to hear, felt how I did. We also got to choose an activity of which I chose a one on one with a kinesiologist. I went into each activity thinking, well this is just lovely, then it all started to seep through the surface level and feel real. Raw. Scary. And emotional.
My one on one with the kinesiologist resulted in me basically crying for an hour after she asked “how can I help you?” Well that was end of me… No! Actually, it was the beginning! This day was the beginning of my awakening and journey of the self!
I returned to the group, I was the only one who had been visibly affected and was crying like a tap had been turned on that I couldn’t get under control. The afternoon continued and I realised I was far more broken than I realised. How was I going to fix it?
We got a book that helped ask us the hard questions we never would ask ourselves. It was when I was asked to “Remember a time you were really happy, what were you doing?” Well fuck, I drew a blank! I couldn’t recall a time in my life where I was ever happy. And I’m not joking. Just nothing came... Obviously there have been plenty, but I was that burnt out I just had no idea which way was up. How did I get here?
Instructions to seek feedback then led to these conversations, more realisations were to follow.
“Ask 5 people when they’ve seen you happy or at your best. What were you doing?” So, I sent out text messages to 5 people with the question. A simple question I thought, yet alarm bells started to go off to these people.
Mum: Calls crying... “What is going on I’m so worried?”
Sister: Replies: “You ok?” Me: “Just answer the question lol”.
Sister: “You always seem happy when you’re organising stuff like my baby shower and at my hens party.”
“When you did my hens party”
“when you travel”
“when you’re at the beach and organising get togethers’ with the girls at your place.”
They were right. I loved organising events, I guess that kind of came from my experience in business with my “get shit done” attitude, styling and creativity as well as my caring nature, where I’d pretty much do anything for my friends and family.
I guess until I did this exercise, I also didn’t realise that I had been covering up how I felt to everyone. To myself. I was always there for everyone else. I showed compassion and empathy for everyone but myself.
I continued to answer questions of self-reflection and I started journaling daily, rating how I felt and noticing what made me happy and what didn’t. However, I kept on with my routine, with working long hours, with gym, with socialising with whatever I could to keep me busy so I didn’t have to deal with what was really there in my heart. I had been covering it all up with being busy. After all, if I kept busy, I wouldn’t be lonely and I wouldn’t have time to notice myself. All of this was happening at an un-conscious level.
As I continued on with my journey of self-enquiry, Svadhaya, I was finding that these feelings and thoughts were big. Overwhelming and exhausting. What I also found was that people didn’t understand it. They didn’t understand I couldn’t “snap myself out of it,” or “get a better routine and push yourself.” That was driving me further into the ground. There was no other way but to start distancing myself from people who weren’t supporting me how I needed.
The road to self- discovery is a long one. In fact, it’s never ending. People around you might not understand it and they might not even hang around to support you. Let them go. Surround yourself with people that care. You’re going to need them.
You may also be wondering where or when does the awakening happen? If this blog has resonated with you at all today, even if it’s not the same circumstances, your journey has already begun!
Don’t be scared, be excited. Be grateful for the experience, for the best parts of YOU are about to be AWAKENED!