Everybody’s Got A Story: “Joy” by Elizabeth Jay – Guest Post – #WriterWednesday

Thanks to Marquessa for the opportunity to guest post!

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Splashes of Delight

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Have you noticed that when on a journey of growing awareness many of us begin to realize we are all interconnected…like waves of the ocean are connected?

On early morning walks I’m finding myself mesmerized by the way waves coming in meet waves returning from the promenade. There is a splash of delight! A meeting, a jump of joyousness, excitement. That makes sense! Waves transmit energy!

Much like what I hear when listening to two women on interconnecting journeys as they talk excitedly via podcast about what they have been discovering. It’s what I feel when something resonates with me in a book or blog post, or when I’m talking with another woman and we discover a mutual understanding of each others’ experiences. Splashes of delight, exchanges of energy…at soul level.

Am I making sense? I’ll take it further. I also feel these moments of ecstasy when I see another sign that something big is unfolding in my life. I was at a writing workshop recently where I was directed to choose an object and two postcards for three different writing activities. Each time I was drawn to brightness. A bright yellow bath-toy duckling, a bright flower, a lamp shining in the darkness. I observed this brightness theme with curiosity. An inner knowing grew stronger that day – there is a great brightness within me that is strong and glowing, but this brightness has been covered over with the rubbish and criticisms from others’ pain and dysfunction. This has become my inner critic which has been saying for years that I can’t trust my intuition, this brightness, my connection to the divine – that I need to hide it or it’ll hurt people or seem arrogant or not be good enough.

This awakening has been continuing and again a week later on my counselling course this concept came up: the bright sparkly part of me was ridiculed and stamped on by people in my early years. Now that I can see this more clearly I know I do not want it to continue. With help from others I am re-writing these old stories and learning to trust my inner knowing.

We all have bright, sparkly parts which we’ve perhaps even forgotten are there because they’ve been buried so deep by pain, rejection, lies and misunderstanding. The amazing thing is we can share with each other what we are learning on our individual journeys. What one person bravely shares can spark another person’s epiphany. We can encourage each other as we move towards greater understanding and boldly living our brightness.

I’ve been following Elizabeth Gilbert on Facebook since reading Big Magic last year. Recently she linked to Carrie Hilgert who is another amazing woman daring to uncover her brightness and share her gifts with the world. Last week she posted her star sign artwork and I looked through them to see which image drew me in. This one did – can you see the lighted match at her centre?

I’ve only recently allowed myself to be curious about star signs (it was a no-no in my Christian upbringing) and so I had to go looking to see what my sign is. Bingo, I am an Aries. Emotion flooded me…here was another sign that I’m on the right path…that I’m connected to something much bigger than me. It was another splash of delight, an exchange of energy!

How about you? Are you in touch with your inner brightness, your soul, your unique gifts? Do you live from a place of peace and inner confidence? There is so much to learn around all this but for now I’m so glad you’ve found my online space. I’d love to have you share one of your moments of delight! What is opening up for you, lovely reader?

 

Blessings!

Elizabeth

 

A Secure Base + Alignment

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I woke early on Sunday morning and while trying to quietly check messages on my phone I mistakenly pushed replay on a cute little video. Oops, the sound came on! I quickly shut it off hoping it hadn’t disturbed my sleeping husband and shortly afterwards my seven year old tentatively pushed open the door. “Oh, good you are awake!” he whispered as I beckoned him in.

We snuggled together for a while and then I suggested we go for a walk. We live in a lovely little coastal town and as we headed towards the sea I was wondering how to get the refreshment I needed while also enjoying the 1:1 time with my boy. It wasn’t long before he asked if he could go along a grassy bank while I walked along the promenade. I encouraged this and it was lovely to watch him checking in every now and then by making eye contact and waving. I also watched him walk calmly past a dog on a lead (he’s had great paranoia around dogs) and then proudly make the thumbs up sign to me at the exact moment I was giving him thumbs up, acknowledging his bravery. Special moment.

As we continued our walk he became more and more adventurous and while he was off I had time to reflect and breathe – my blissful happy place. There were a couple of moments of slight anxiety on my part but he followed directions beautifully and met me again twice, exactly where I had directed. Both of us have grown in confidence through this and we arrived home happy in our shared experience, but also refreshed from our times alone.

I’m loving the lesson this has given me in letting go of the pressure I’ve had on myself to be an ever-present mother. Not only did my soul receive much-needed refreshment during my walk, but my son also made progress on his own journey to greater independence.

I’ve been learning about the concept of a Secure Base recently and here is an excerpt from John Bowlby’s book, A Secure Base:

This brings me to a central feature of my concept of parenting – the provision by both parents of a secure base from which a child or an adolescent can make sorties into the outside world and to which he can return knowing for sure that he will be welcomed when he gets there, nourished physically and emotionally, comforted if distressed, reassured if frightened. John Bowlby, A Secure Base p12

I love that this is what I was able to offer my boy this morning…the opportunity to “make sorties into the outside world”. It’s made me realize how valuable my process of letting go is going to be for my children as well. As I focus on providing a secure base for them I can also encourage more independence, which will in turn give me more time to be me…without guilt!

In my last post I wrote about having a supportive environment for myself . It is contributing hugely to my growth process at the moment. I didn’t have a secure base growing up; my home life was challenging and not a safe place for me emotionally. I have struggled for years, mainly on my own, to understand my past in order to enjoy life now. I’ve loved offering emotional support to many along my journey as I’ve shared what I’ve been learning, but to finally have this kind of support for myself…it’s is an incredible gift.

What if we didn’t have to struggle alone? What if we were able to find a secure base from which we could venture out into the world, knowing that we had a supportive environment to return to or someone in our corner to connect with? What if, when we realized a lack, we actively sought this out for ourselves?

When I think about my process to finding the support I have now I realize that it’s been intuition + action that = the alignment I’m feeling. Rian Kerfoot has been writing about this in her Facebook group, Own Your Magic. She is one of the wonderful women that has been a shining light on my recent journey. Megan Hale, my Enoughness Coach, is another amazing influence. I love looking back at the way I was led to her work at just the right time for me. I could say that it began with reading Elizabeth Gilbert’s Big Magic last year, which led me to be brave and start this blog, which led me to Rian’s blog, which led me to Megan…but I’m sure that there were plenty of intuition+action=alignment points well before then.

Intuition + Action = Alignment

All this to say, follow the signs that are showing up in your life! Read that book, write that post, watch that Ted Talk, connect with that person. As you follow the promptings of your inner knowing I’m absolutely sure you’ll be led on a journey that will rock your world and set your soul on fire!

From my heart to yours,

Elizabeth

Singing Our Own Song

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I am sitting at my little desk with a new song in my heart. I am on an incredible journey at the moment; one of change and growth. Yes, I know I’m always writing about that(!), but this is even more so. As well as my Counselling Course and required therapy I have also signed up with an Enoughness Coach for March and April. I’m only ten days in but already I have received so much clarity and support.

In my last post I wrote about curiosity. One of the things I’ve been really noticing lately is the robins that are appearing on my nature walks. I got curious enough about this that I looked up what they might be saying to me.

He [Robin] signifies stimulation of new growth and renewal in many areas of life. He teaches that any changes can be made with joy, laughter and a song in your heart. Robin shows you how to ride the winds of passion within your heart and become independent and self reliant through this change. Robin will teach you how to move forward with grace, tenacity, perseverance and assertion. Are you letting go of personal dramas? Ones that no longer serve your higher purpose? Are you exercising compassion and patience in mental, spiritual and emotional areas? Robin will teach how to incorporate new beginnings with faith and trust in the process. It is time to believe in yourself and use the inspiration that is given. Listen carefully. It is time to sing your own song for a new period in your life. Source

What does it mean to sing our own songs? This week I’m realizing I’ve never before truly prioritized getting to know myself. And now that I know I can I’m craving lots of time to do so! I’m talking walks, journaling and digging deep. I’m realizing that it’s okay not to devote 100% of my time to my family, which to me has meant being on-call 24/7 if I’m home. I’ve had fears around not wanting to damage my children emotionally…but now see that not being there all the time doesn’t mean I will. What interests me is that I have known this for more than a few years in my head…or I’ve known it in my heart but it hasn’t translated in how I act.

I’m learning that this is because of old stories: as a child I learned how to live life as my mother dictated, as a Christian wife I prioritized pleasing my husband, as a mum I’ve poured myself out for my children, often running on empty. Now, at nearly thirty-eight, I’m in a place to really learn what my song is and I’m looking forward to fully knowing both the words and music. This feels exciting, amazing and like treasure to be uncovered. I am moving forward in faith and trust in the process and knowing that I have great support around me. And of course not forgetting that this will be a forever process as there is always more to learn!

Have you already discovered your song or are you still singing someone else’s tune? Get curious! Do you have support? Yes? I’m so glad. No? I’m here if you want to reach out via my contact page,  I’d love to hear from you.

Blessings!

Elizabeth