Before beginning, I would like to add a trigger warning as I am going to mention miscarriage, sexual assault and grief in this post. I want to be real with you on how this year has been for me and I can’t do that without speaking about these things.
This year has been one of the most transformative years of my life. I have changed in a deep way that words can’t quite explain or describe. If you were to look at what has happened in my life and business through the lens of society and patriarchy, then many would think it was a “bad” year or it was “unsuccessful”. However, I have had to shatter those rose-tinted glasses into a thousand pieces to really start seeing myself and the world.
I was forced to go inwards when I unfortunately had a miscarriage earlier this year. If that had happened before, I probably would have just pushed it to one side and “got on with things” but I just couldn’t. I knew I had to allow myself to feel the pain I was experiencing, and this pain and grief was the gateway to some of the deepest healing I have experienced. It has opened my heart and allowed me to have so much more compassion and love for myself and others.
What did it bring up?
When I initially started my healing journey after burning out a few years ago, I didn’t even realise how much unprocessed trauma I had in my body, mind and heart. I had been going through the motions for years and was depressed from my early teens. Outwardly I was a success but inside I felt broken. Burnout was actually an initial spiritual awakening for me that forced me to start facing everything I had buried so deep inside myself.
With this, I realised along the way, that I had been sexually assaulted when I was 11 and had completely blanked it out from my memory (this is partly why I say that time doesn’t heal all wounds). I froze in that moment and had been frozen for 20 years thereafter. I had disassociated. I cut off my joy, I quit all my passions and I dipped into a depression that followed me from then onwards. Going through the miscarriage this year made me really face this and how much I had hated my body and myself for freezing. I had a choice, I could blame my body again for what I had experienced, or I could learn to love my body for everything it has done in order to keep me safe.
When I realised that I had cut off my joy at that point and started to really heal from the trauma, I started the amazing process of reclaiming my voice, my mind, my body. I started to sing again, I found that I actually have a gift with working with plants and started to do an apprenticeship in herbalism. I reclaimed my voice and gifts that were taken away in that one moment where I froze. I allowed my heart to thaw. My relationships changed, what I want to do in my business changed, my spiritual connection changed. It was scary and hard at times, I have felt like I was in an endless void, however it forced me to surrender and accept my path. To accept that the “easy” direction I had chosen for my life, was someone else’s dream life, and now it is time for me to start living my real dreams, and to give others the permission to do the same.
Deep Lessons from 2021
From going through this, I have learnt so much this year and it was a catalyst for me looking at many different areas of my life. There have been so many lessons, and I will continue to share more during the year to come, however here are some I feel ready to share in the meantime:
- Sometimes our deepest pain can be a gateway to our deepest healing – as I mentioned already with my experience above, often our biggest pain is the gateway to our deepest healing. What I have come to realise is we need to allow ourselves to go through what we feel, not around it, or by putting it deeper inside ourselves hoping it will go away. We have been conditioned to fear what is referred to as “negative” emotions, but by not allowing ourselves to feel them means we also cut off our greatest joys. We only get to experience a small amount of what life is really trying to offer us. It is ok for it to be messy at times, it is ok to vulnerable.
- We have untapped, forgotten or unknown gifts that we can’t use because we are so conditioned to reject ourselves – this was huge for me. Firstly, I worked for corporate for years when I was actually supposed to be working with people. However, this year specifically, I have reclaimed or remembered gifts I didn’t know I had. Before this year I used to kill house plants and now I have a whole little herb garden growing and it came so naturally. At some point we stopped believing in magic and we stopped believing in our own magic too. We were told it was unrealistic so we cut it off and buried it. I can tell you, those gifts you buried can’t wait to be found.
- Mindset is not everything – mainstream personal development focuses too much on mindset and not enough on us as whole, complex human beings. You can have the best mindset in the world and still have a heart that is closed off to others and a body that is holding trauma. We need to move away from just focusing on the mind as it is keeping people trapped.
- Our bodies are amazing and hold so much wisdom, however we have become disconnected from them through shame and guilt – I left my body through trauma and I see it so much in the work that I do. More so, as women, we have been conditioned to hate and shame our bodies which makes us disassociate even more. According to surveys most women would rather lose a few kilos then focus on other healing. We have to start reclaiming our bodies as women as a lot of our power lies within them.
- Allow yourself to grieve, we are all grieving on one level or another right now – grief has been a big one this year. From the loss of loved ones, to loss of income, to the loss of the future we had in mind, we are all grieving on one level or another right now. Allowing myself to fully grieve this year I realised that I had created in my mind future versions of myself based on the life I thought I was going to have. I had to grieve them, and then let it go, so I can step into the life I am actually meant to have.
- We are not just here to manifest out own dream lives, we are here to co-create a better life for all – as we move into the next year, this is something I really want to speak more about. When we go into personal development or healing, we often feel like it is just for us. What I have come to realise is that I do the inner work for every life that I touch. We have to start moving away from just looking at ourselves and see the bigger picture of how we are actually here in this moment in time to make a different future for everyone. That can sound daunting but we are more ready than we realise to step up and make a difference.
Thank you for allowing me to share my heart so openly and vulnerably here, I hope that you can find some insights from the lessons I learnt this year. What were your biggest learnings?
If you have any questions or have experienced anything I discussed in this blog, please know you are not alone and feel free to reach out.
Wishing you and your loved ones a blessed year to come xxx