I came back from Spain last year in a frenzy. A heaving, chaotic mess would be an understatement. I had gone through a horrific and emotionally violent breakup. I had wiggled my way out of an extremely uncomfortable living situation. I had met and fallen in love with the man of my dreams. I had learned how important it was to make myself happy before I worried about anyone else. And then I had the most amazing, love filled time abroad before I was ripped away from my fantasy world and forced to return home to the decay I had left behind. It was icky. My heart was in agony.
I was surging with energy and an uncertain, boiling future. I had no road map. I didn’t know what to do with everything that was churning inside of me. And I was desperately lost.
So I called Kelsie.
Kelsie is my spiritual teacher. She’s a meditation coach and lives in Hawaii. I spent a long time with her, telling her everything that had taken place in my life over the past 6 months. I was so in need of something to push me in the right direction.
When the student is ready, the teacher arrives. And arrive she did, on a sparkly pink unicorn. I was saved. I was going to be fine. More than fine. I was going to thrive. I just didn’t know it yet.
I am not being melodramatic here when I tell you that Kelsie and Mercedes saved my life. Literally saved it. I don’t know where I would be right now if it weren’t for them. No one in my entire life has ever affected such radical, positive change in me.
So let’s get to the meat of the matter. Let’s talk about VULNERABILITY…
That was my first lesson. My Soul’s first big lesson in this lifetime. The issue of vulnerability had been popping up in my life for months before I actually started working on it with Kelsie and Mercedes. Little things, like a friend sending me Brene Brown’s overwhelmingly popular TED talk about vulnerability. And another close friend mentioning that she felt she didn’t know me on a deep, personal level. So I started questioning why I never shared intimate details of my life with my dearest friends. It was something that had never crossed my mind before. The first step is awareness, and the Universe was giving me hints!!
Their program requires serious self-reflection, being truly honest with yourself, confronting your demons and allowing them to rise to the surface to be dealt with. This isn’t for the faint of heart – you have to really want true transformation if you want results. Because it can get ugly. And hard. And sometimes multiple things arise at once and you’re overwhelmed and scared and can’t think clearly. But all of these are good things – because it means it’s working. You’re walking through the storm, and clear skies are waiting for you on the other side.
How was it for me? My fear of vulnerability was so intense that I was incapable of showing my authentic self. Incapable of sharing my thoughts and feelings. Even on the rare occasion that I wanted to open up, my words would get trapped in my throat on their way out and never got a voice. I wasn’t truly living my life as ME.
Kelsie had me spend some time being alone and just really thinking about my past, and when it was that this fear of being vulnerable developed.
I was diligent. It took days of self reflection. I poured through my subconscious, willing memories to rise to the surface. I meditated. I wrote in my journal. I sat and stared out my window in silence. But nothing came…
…and then it did!
And I realized it started when I was a child, with my father. It was subtle, of course, like most dangerous things are. Constantly being told I’m wrong in what I do, what I think is wrong, his way is the best way, if I don’t do things in this way I will fail, etc.
I got older, and it continued. I have a very opinionated, very close minded father who has no room in his life for things he doesn’t understand, or options he hasn’t explored. And he imposed these same rules on his children. I was expected to make the same choices he did. There was no freedom of individuality in our family. Much like growing up in Soviet Russia, Comrade. Confrom, conform, conform was our mantra. To this day, my brother still has my parents’ house number labeled in his mobile as “Iron Curtain”.
Heaven forbade any desire to deviate from the path laid out by my parents. My ideas were always shut down as insignificant and unworthy of attention. The mutterings of a whimsy dreamer. As foolish. The foolish part of this was especially damaging, as it led me to believe for years that I was a very stupid woman.
But not stupid enough to not ask for help…