Sometimes it takes the hardest, most painful circumstances in life to make us aware of what we have been doing our entire lives. This was certainly true in my case. In the past couple of weeks, I have gone through one of the most painful experiences of my life. However now that I can look back on it, I see it was a beautiful and much-needed learning experience,because unfortunately, I couldn’t seem to learn the lesson any other way. I made a startling discovery that will absolutely change my life.
As many of you know, I partially moved to Sedona in March. I say partially because I still have an apartment in Tulsa, OK, so I go back and forth. Well, when I first came to Sedona to visit in February, I was actually ‘running away’ from Tulsa, because my boredom and unhappiness was so strong. I felt I had to get out of there. I felt Tulsa was the problem.
Funnily enough, I have followed that scenario for years. Back in 2002, I was so desperately sick of California that I moved to New Hampshire. I hated California and felt it was dragging me down. You see, California was the problem, not me. Then in 2007, I had had enough of New Hampshire. I was lonely and miserable. New Hampshire was obviously the problem, not me! So, I moved to Oklahoma. Oklahoma was boring after a while, so I did a lot of road trips.
Each time, I made the place I lived the problem. However, what I’ve realized is that ‘I’ was the problem! Each time, I was only running away from myself. The problem is, I followed myself everywhere I went. I couldn’t escape. So, each time, the ‘problem’ got worse and worse.
Well, my higher Self finally decided it was time for me to learn a lesson the hard way, since I wouldn’t learn otherwise. So, things really escalated once I moved to Sedona, where the spiritual energy is extremely high and it’s hard to hide from anything (unless you leave, which I did a few times). My higher Self decided to teach me this lesson by creating some really difficult circumstances, where I would be ‘trapped’ in certain scenarios and have no choice but to face myself. It did this twice in March while I was here: in March, I became so restless and unhappy (for reasons I will explain at another time) here, that I decided I had to get out of here. (Actually, I had that spiritual seminar in Illinois to get to). I wanted to leave a few days early because I was so restless and miserable. However, a snowstorm hit, and they shut down the very highway I needed to leave here. For several days it snowed in Arizona. I was essentially ‘trapped’ here, barely able to leave the house. I paced the house like a caged animal. I finally managed to escape once the snow melted – just in time to drive to Illinois, thank goodness.
Another thing that happened in March is that I drove out to a nearby town about 18 miles away one day. Upon my return, I got stuck in terrible traffic (construction) for about 20 minutes. Well, I had a panic attack. Behind the wheel. That was a very unpleasant experience that could have enabled me to use many of the calming and centering skills I learned over the past year. But no. Instead I yelled, freaked out, and freaked out some more.
Then this last time I have been in Sedona (since around April 8th), things got progressively worse. Within days of getting here, I became miserable, unable to sleep, eat or leave the house for more than a few minutes at a time. Huge anxiety. It got so bad that I became manic – pacing the house, unable to focus on anything, panicky, anxious, nauseated, the whole nine yards. I am not exaggerating – in fact, I cannot even explain the extent of it. I also admit to using alcohol to try and soothe and sedate myself, but that would not work, and that actually caused the problem to get a thousand times worse. No matter how much I drank, it wouldn’t cease. Once again, I wanted to get the heck out of here. But I couldn’t, because I couldn’t drive in that condition – especially not drive through the mountains and desert at high altitudes! I finally had no choice but to call an ambulance on myself several days ago. They took me to a hospital and stabilized me, rehydrated me, gave me lots of oxygen and some mild anxiety pills so I could sleep.
However, during my darkest most desperate nights – there were about three of them – I had some huge revelations and huge understandings about why this was going on. It boils down to essentially this: I WAS RUNNING FROM MYSELF, OVER AND OVER AGAIN. And not only that, I’ve done it my ENTIRE life! Not just by relocating to different states, but through everything I did… reading books, watching TV, gaming, distractions… and not just through those things, either. Ever since I was young, I would ‘create’ problems for myself to get out of: dramas with other people, arguments and debates, feelings of imagined victimization, involvement in ‘do-gooding’, immersion into celebrity gossip and blogging, and much more. Then the eating problems, eating disorder, drinking, getting involved with recovery.
As a matter of fact, I realized that my alcoholism was the biggest ‘escape’ of all. First I drank to escape, then I got to the point I had to get help. Then the help itself turned into another distraction, because recovery basically has to consume your entire life. (Granted, 12 step and other programs do force you look at yourself, but not to the extent you need to, in my opinion. Reading on below you’ll see what I mean.)
Many of those things I mentioned above make up a person’s life. And I’m not saying they are bad. They are, however, distractions from us going within and seeing the Truth. And I’m discovering that we have to go in and get through all the ‘muck and grime’ before we can start uncovering the real Truth, which is that we are beautiful, shining Beings of Light. And more. I had a perfect chance, in attending a metaphysical school last year – to go deep within and do the work of uncovering the ‘muck and grime’. But I ran, once again, because I couldn’t handle it.
It’s like going into a basement and turning on the light. At first, we see all these dusty cobwebs, piles of old junk and boxes, filth and grime everywhere. But if we set about the task of cleaning it up, we start seeing the beautiful wood on the walls, or the shiny trinkets that were hiding in those boxes, or all those treasures we’d forgotten about. In the Universal Language of Mind, basements actually represent our unconscious – things/beliefs we’ve been operating from all our lives but haven’t been aware of. So, with that understanding, we can clean out that darn basement once and for all and never put another thing in it.
In my own journey, things began accelerating because I finally became willing – last month in March – to truly start looking at all the ‘muck and grime’ with no judgment. I became willing to see all the things I’ve done and why. For instance, I realized how my insecurity colors just about everything I do and/or say. And how I just have to be right, because I am terrified to be wrong. And many more. When I became willing to see these things about myself without being embarrassed or judgmental or angry, an incredible thing happened: I began to see even below those things, and why I was doing them in the first place. Then I went even further down to reveal beliefs I’ve had since I’ve been a child – and beyond.
I’ve made a startling discovery out of all of this: there are certain core beliefs I developed upon entering into this lifetime that have colored my entire life until now: I didn’t want to be born. I thought that ‘descending into the darkness of physical life’ I was separate from God/Light. I was wrong and bad, guilty and shameful. And angry. I also felt abandoned by God.
So, with all of these mistaken beliefs about myself, I spent my life ‘hiding’ from that very Light. And most astoundingly of all, I developed tons of ways to overcompensate for them!! For instance… because of the guilt, I tried to be a ‘good girl’ my entire life. And because I was so ashamed of being wrong, I developed a terror of being wrong, so I always had/have to be right.
Seriously? I have spent my entire life overcompensating for mistaken/false beliefs that I created for myself upon entering into this physical body.
It gets even deeper here…
The Buddha and other spiritual masters teach that ‘Thought is Cause’. I have found this to be true. In my childhood, I unconsciously created some of these scenarios that would stay with me for life. For instance, I ended up in situations as a young child where I would be harshly reprimanded for making a mistake. (Adding to my terror of making mistakes and being ‘wrong’). Because I hated myself unconsciously, I created many scenarios where people would hate me. And because I felt so abandoned by God/Light, I created tons of abandonment scenarios over the years. As for the guilt and shame thing… well, I was in a family where I was strongly encouraged (pretty much forced for many years) to attend a strict Baptist church where guilt and shame is the name of the game! (You know, because they teach that you are a sinner just for being born). As for the anger thing, there were plenty of things my beliefs and thoughts caused to happen that would create even more anger within.
And then… I went through a period in the past year where I became a super spiritual person do-gooder. Started doing free healings and intuitive readings to help people. Sure, my intentions were and still are good. But I realized that even this is an overcompensation for all of those feelings of lack of fulfillment within, all those feelings that I am wrong and bad and I have to make up for it somehow. And I thought all these things would bring me closer to God and enlightenment.
Here’s the good news, though: I finally realized that we are NOT at all separate from God/Light, EVER. Because we ARE a reflection of God/Light. Our physical body is the literal reflection of God & Light. We would not exist without God/Light! So with that understanding, how can we ever truly do anything ‘wrong’? How can we continue to try and hide from that which is always present? Sure, the Light is obscured in our many false beliefs and lack of understanding. And over many lifetimes, we begin uncovering these things within us that one by one remove the ‘darkness’, so we can become – in these physical bodies – an embodiment of this Light. And Karma exists for the purpose of balancing out things that we do that harms others, ourselves or other things.
So there is nothing we can do that we need to hide from, because God/Light is everywhere and knows everything already.
Anyway, all of these (and more) revelations have come to me in the past month through extreme suffering. That’s another thing… I also learned that I do not have to cause myself extreme suffering to learn these amazing things anymore. I simply need to meditate diligently and often to allow them to come through on their own. And also learn to embrace life situations and find the learning in them all. I also need to learn how to create my own forward movement in life, so that painful circumstances don’t have to force it.
By the way, one way I was able to start embracing and looking at my own ‘faults’ is through other people who irritated the heck out of me. One night, I kept getting onto this particular forum where people were arguing about certain things. I got so incensed at some of the things people would say. As I went to bed after a particular heated discussion, I started to wonder why I was so upset. Why did I care so much? In questioning THAT, I began seeing how those people were reflecting certain parts of myself. (A concept I’ve written about on this very site! And I still got caught up in blaming others. ) When I realized that however, for once, I didn’t get upset but instead started to just look at my own motives TOTALLY HONESTLY. And I decided to go deeper and deeper with it.
Here’s a quick example of the self-inquiry I did that night:
1. I was mad because a lady on the forum was spouting false truths right and left. And pretending to be what she wasn’t. She wouldn’t listen to me telling her the truth.
2. It frustrated me that she was deceiving people.
3. I questioned myself as to why I was so upset about that. The real truth, I discovered upon deep reflection, is because I know I often deceive myself, with excuses about why I can’t do certain things. I have every excuse in the book as to why I can’t do certain things, when I really can.
3. Next, I began questioning myself as to why she wouldn’t listen to me and why it bothered me. I realized then it was because I usually didn’t listen to my own higher Self. And often didn’t listen to people giving me good advice. So in essence, why should anyone listen to ME?
4. Then I asked myself why I had to be right. And realized it was because I felt I had to be right. Going back to that old fear of being terrified of being wrong.
5. And why did I care that she was pretending to be something she wasn’t? Well, this was a hard one, but I still managed to look at it without judgment: because I also often pretended things to people, online. I would pretend on Facebook to be happy, for example, when I felt I was dying inside. I would pretend to be an authority on things when I really wasn’t. And more. I have spent a lot of time pretending.
7. And so then it all began to make sense – about how this all reflected me and my own belief patterns and behavior. When I looked at it all honestly, without judgment (and even began laughing with relief to finally understand), all those patterns began falling away and even deeper and more amazing truth then had a chance to come through.
So I implore you: DO NOT IGNORE THE PEOPLE WHO IRRITATE YOU MOST. THEY ARE TEACHING YOU VERY IMPORTANT THINGS ABOUT YOURSELF!!!!
These past few months haven’t been easy. They have been the most difficult time of my life. But they have also been the most amazing and beautiful.
Anyway, I hope you all can take something from this post. So if there is any advice I have to give at this point, after going through these and many other experiences is this: Stop running. Stop creating all these distractions, scenarios, and more. Start looking at people around you, as they will teach you about yourself. And then start going within. Meditate. Find a Self-realization or Self-mastery course or study.
Thanks for reading this very long post!