Releasing our Shadows into the Light
Apr 30, 2019 06:11PM
Avoiding the criticism and judgement of others can be exhausting and futile work. I should know, I’ve spent a majority of my life trying to ‘control’ external perceptions of who I am to those around me. And yet despite my knowledge, education, advanced degrees, experience and proven competence in the world, I couldn’t quite shake this sense that I was nothing more than a big, fat fake. A fraud. And at any moment, someone was going to find out and the jig would be up—busted!
I’ll tell you what—the Universe works in mysterious ways because I received a message out of the blue recently that allowed me to confront this fear head on. The message called me out on something that happened a few months prior, and in it I was called a “phony” and a “poser.” When I read those words, my heart started racing like crazy and I felt heat rising in my body. It was a fight or flight response and my immediate thought was, “Oh no! I got caught—they know the truth about me!”
One of the practices I’ve been learning at the spiritual center I attend (Unity on the South Hill) is that when I’m ‘triggered’ by something, instead of reacting or telling myself a story about it, take a moment to stop, breathe and be with it. Move in with a sense of gratitude and remember it’s not happening to me but rather for me. Easier said than done of course, but I knew this was one of those moments. And so, I sat with the discomfort and asked for clarity. And after some time, I got it. I suddenly felt like hugging that message and the person who wrote it (I know that sounds weird), but it was as though a giant weight had been lifted, and my big, fat, fraud self was free to be out in the open! My biggest fear of being called a fake, phony poser happened, and the world didn’t come to an end. Instead, I was able to acknowledge that fearful shadow part of myself and bring her out into the light. Props Universe.
May is our Women’s Health issue and the month we celebrate moms! It’s been almost three years since my mom made her transition out of the body, and yet I still feel her presence in virtually everything I do. I met a remarkable woman at the CdA Health and Wellness fair who had lost her mom around the same time I did. She shared with me that she resonated deeply with my experience and that she didn’t have words to describe the strong, soul-level bond she shared with her mom or the pain of losing her until she read my story. I felt honored hearing her words and we acknowledged that the souls of both our moms were swirling around us in that very divine moment of connection. We also acknowledged that not everyone experiences a strong relationship with their mom. As you’ll read in this month’s Inspiration article by Dr. Christiane Northup, “On a soul level, we’re old friends with our mothers. And they signed up for assisting us on our souls’ journeys by being willing to take on the role of our mother. And no matter how well they did or didn’t do that job, we have a job, too: to realize that though we might not have had the mother we wanted, we all got the mother our souls needed.”
Here’s to you, your mom and all the powerful women in your life!
With love, Amber