"What's done in love is done well." - Vincent Van Gogh
Almost two years ago I completed my first yoga teacher training - casually I am going to insert that this summer I will be completing my second and the first of many many more but more on that later. One of our breakthrough exercises was coming up with a phrase, usually a lie or a way we bend the truth from ourselves that a) hide us from who we truly are b) are not true and c) prevent us from connecting in the most authentic way possible with those around us. Like it or not everyone has something that they tell themselves that molds to these three categories. This was a particularly difficult exercise for me since I consider myself to be pretty much an open book; an honest person who does not shy away from saying exactly what is going through my mind. After much thought and through conversation with my fellow trainees and my teachers what I was feeling I could finally put into words. I've kept my lie a secret from the world for quite some time but it's 2018 and its time that you see a little more into whats in my head.
I don't care.
Yep these three little words have trailed my thoughts all of my life and I thought they protected me from a side I didn't want the world to see: my vulnerability, my emotions, my fears, dreams and innermost struggles. I used this mentality as a way of preventing myself from recognizing these complicated feelings and life a life where honestly I was emotionally numb. I think this came from an emotional scar of letting a certain someone know how I felt when I was sixteen and since then have closed myself off emotionally from the world and buried these feelings under a powerful, badass facade that I have as a way to hide the world to hide what really goes on behind the surface - to show what I considered the only version of "strong" that I thought there was. Three years later I am finding myself in a similar situation of opening up my more emotionally vulnerable side to let people know how I really feel. Sometimes you are rewarded and sometimes you learn - that's what I am still coming to terms with through this journey. After seventeen years of hiding away my emotions I am done with hiding this extremely important part of who I am from the world, but mostly I am done with hiding this version of myself from myself. Emotions are powerful; beautiful and I realize more than ever it takes a strong badass to be vulnerable. Win win honestly.
One way that I have been exploring and dealing with the effects of this unfamiliarity is through words. Until now I really have never appreciated the power that comes with words. Words are not only how we communicate how we feel and what's going through our mind (ugh in real life I am definitely not as eloquent as I am when I type - literally ask anyone I stutter a lot and I literally don't know how to speak in full sentences lol) but also words are a way that we can connect with other people and realize that we are not alone. Did you read that? We are not alone. What we are feeling - someone before us has felt it before and by putting it into writing what the word's owner is doing is immortalizing what they were going through at that one certain point in time - maybe for their own sake but for us readers in the present it is a way for us to realize that we are not alone.
Words have helped me come to terms with the fact that I DO CARE. I do not want to be numb. I want to feel because feeling is what makes me a human. Vulnerability is not a weakness ... it's a damn superpower.
Here are some of my favorite words (along with some pictures that I took from a recent trip to northern Denmark):
"For what it's worth; it's never too late to be whoever you want to be. I hope you live a life you are proud of, and if you find that you're not, I hope you have the strength to start over." - F. Scott Fitzgerald
"Maybe there's something you're afraid to say, or someone you're afraid to love, or somewhere you're afraid to go. It's gonna to hurt. It's gonna hurt because it matters" - John Green
"We are all broken, that's how the light gets in." - Ernest Hemingway
"I am not this hair, I am not this skin, I am the soul that lives within." - Rumi
"People are capable, at any time in their lives, of doing what they dream of." - Paul Coelho
"Hell is other people." - Jean Paul Sartre
"Practice and all is coming." - Sri. K Pattabhi Jois
"The hardest step we all must take is to blindly trust in who we are." - Atticus