I injured my ankle recently, I received a bruised bone from a very heavy surfboard crashing into it while I was surfing my local break in Byron Bay. I’ve been using crutches to help me get around and I received an overwhelming amount of love and care from supportive friends making sure I was ok.
The interesting thing was that the injury left me feeling really vulnerable, I couldn’t drive, I couldn’t walk around properly, I needed help to go shopping and cook food, I needed lifts and to ask favours to get simple things organised … And to top it all off it was really tiring! It triggered me deeply on many levels and I found myself feeling very sensitive and emotional. Even though I realised on a practical level I was completely supported, I felt alone and sad.
There’s no logic to this experience, it just was.
Wtf?! Ok, I thought, what can I do? How can I handle this uncomfortable situation, both physically and emotionally? How do I make sense of it all and come to peace with my current reality? How do I surrender and allow myself to heal?
The truth is I didn’t know.
By simply just saying those words to myself, admitting that I was broken and there’s not much I or anyone else could do until I healed, allowed me some kind of new space to enter into… some kind of internal pressure was released (mostly through my tears!). I realised “Maybe I don’t have to know?” Maybe my only job was to just stay with it- all of it, the comfortable and the uncomfortable parts. Watching what arose and what I found to be the most difficult things for me. Allowing some softness and compassion to come into those parts of me that had the most resistance.
I wasn’t sure but I didn’t really have any other options so I thought “I can only try, right?”
I decided that I could keep moving towards the things that were making me feel uncomfortable, like asking for help. I could then ask myself why I find it so easy to help others and yet I find it so difficult to ask for help for myself at a time of need.
I think this is where the freedom lays, the uncovering of the unconscious thoughts and beliefs, looking underneath the reactions, the triggers, the hooks that spiral us down into unhealthy thought patterns. That cause restriction in our bodies, our minds and that have the potential to send us into victim mode…
And I could simply just be “willing” to try to find the gift in the experience…there is always a gift but sometimes it just comes in strange wrapping.
As a good friend once told me “self-compassion is a spiritual tool to freedom”, so I tried it.
I forgave myself for pushing so hard, for getting injured, for not being able to take care of myself in all the ways I was so use to. I forgave myself for having to laze around and for not feeling motivated to work or be creative or make the most of my time with my foot up in meditation or gratitude. I forgave the intense emotions of frustration and anger that arose and for all the old dark feelings of regret and pain that I had experienced in the past connected to other painful times (both physically and emotionally) for me.
These feeling and memories are not dependent on time, time doesn’t shift them…only perspective and healing can do that. Taking an active role, first being aware of them, acknowledging their presence no matter how painful they appear to be. Holding true to my intention of letting the negative thoughts and beliefs go so that I can be free of them, allowing myself to return to my most natural, God given, child-like state of being. Where true peace, unconditional love and joy reside and are abundant.
This is real freedom, freedom and liberation of the heart and mind.
There is a wonderful Byron Bay comedian called Mandy Nolan who recently stated in one of her eloquent blogs; “Humans need to learn limits; this is a self-regulating process and the responsibility of the individual – not the world”.
We often learn our limits through injuries. So how about we take the pressure off ourselves for this precious learning and dodge the self-pity. Let’s see the injury for the important gifts they are. Learn our limits, be willing to keep growing and expanding, see the courage and beauty in surrendering and letting go. Well that’s all I could do in my situation anyway and I feel it has been another healing lesson.
Sending love and healing to all those that are injured, and all those who are not! Healing is definitely challenging but it’s also freeing and rewarding.
May all beings have the self-compassion and awareness to offer love and kindness to their own healing journey!
Much love & Happy New Year!