Time to Fight 😳

Oprah’s acceptance speech was amazing. Made me bawl my eyes out and filled me with hope for a better future.

Yesterday, I had a migraine that became increasingly debilitating as the day went on. I ended up taking a mersyndol (lord help me when I need a prescription come February 1 – it’s the only thing that relieves the pain of my migraines) and slept ten hours.

But, whilst in pain, unable to do much else, I felt a surge of something fire my soul and I googled the NSW Ombudsman. If I were to lodge a complaint about the investigative process utilized by EPAC during 2016 (not their decision, but the process), I need to complain internally first. When that fails, as it will, I then refer the complaint to the NSW Ombudsman’s Office.

I am angry (still – a sign I need to do something) that it:

* took as long as it did (nine months – seriously impacting my mental health),

* took so long for me to be informed why I was under investigation (three months),

* took so long for me to be given a chance to respond (closer to five months),

* involved me being instructed to not discuss it at work with anyone (when others were gossiping about it willy nilly),

* resulted in me not being permitted to have a Support Person within my workplace,

* I was not given the opportunity to show or provide any supporting evidence in my defense before being labeled a “self-serving liar” by the lower ranked investigators, and

* took so long to receive the adjudication after the letter had been typed and dated (November – I received it in December after enquiring about it).

Yes. Still angry. I barely functioned personally during the year of 2016. I suffered extreme anxiety. I cried most mornings on the way to work. I managed to perform at school (except for a minor marking snaffle and a few meltdowns with the boss); in the classroom, it was my best year to date.

I was not myself at all.

I did work through it. It was a sign from the universe for me to change my life. I appreciate all of that. However, other people will find themselves in situations similar to mine, and whilst I understand that children come first, I do not accept that this requires an adult’s welfare to not count at all.

I won’t even get started on the NSW Teachers Federation’s ineptitude and failure to support me at all through all of this, after years and years of dedicated service to the union as a Federation Representative and for a shorter time, as a councillor. Grrrrrr. I resigned from the union as a result.

My dad always encouraged me to fight against, stand up against, injustice. He always has. But, I couldn’t do it during 2016. I couldn’t do it during 2017. I can do it during 2018.

Yes. The anger with the process is still there. My mental health is in a great place. But, it is still terrifying to think that I will be opening a can of worms by putting forth a complaint. What if? What if? What if?

I need to focus on what is. And, in the present, I am in a position to stand up. I hate being brave and feeling responsible. Why can’t someone else do it …

I have a friend …

I know, lucky me. I have a friend. The ellipsis suggests that there is more to this sentence though for those giggling 😜.

I have a friend who is on a rigorous healing journey. Who is confronting her demons and holding her ground. And, who is absolutely shit scared, every day, of what this could lead to.

When we embark on a healing journey, we first spend time holding the truth within ourselves. We go over our narratives so many times that we can finally feel ‘comfortable’ within them. We start to own our narrative in more than just a debilitating way.

We almost start to feel safe that this is who we are now, and we start to use the labels: survivor, victim, me too. We also brand the trauma: sexual abuse, physical abuse, dysfunction. The labels start to define us. They hold us tightly, but in a way that makes us feel, I don’t know, connected, maybe, secure, even.

This part of the journey can last many, many years. Some people become ‘stuck’ in this part of the healing and they, in essence, hide behind these labels. The labels and the trauma become safe. They, in turn, become the labels. This isn’t healthy.

The next part of the healing journey takes place when we start to share our narrative. We talk to other people, we write, or we create, in some way, to share our narrative. The courage it requires to share is significant. It’s like stepping out into the humidity after a big storm; the fear smothers you until you acclimate.

Sharing comes at a cost. You fear that you won’t be believed, that people will judge you, invalidate your experience (and you), and look at you differently. Sharing makes you very vulnerable, scarier for someone who already feels invalidated.

Rarely, depending on who you choose to share with, will any of these things happen. More often than not, people will support you, commend you on your bravery, and ultimately, start to share their narrative.

This phase of healing helps you to develop strength. It is usually at this point that you start to think outside of yourself. You start saying things like, I want to help others, I want to make a difference, and I need to get my story out there because this needs to stop. Most of us start changing our little parts of the world here. We share and by doing so, we empower and inspire others to share. We start to impact the broader social narrative (this is where #metoo gained real traction, just as a current example).

Some people then move beyond their own circle. They start blogging, writing books, making movies, giving speeches, designing workshops, to get their narrative out there to impact even more people. I think, it is at this point, that the trauma stops defining you. It is a subtle change. But, importantly, I think the healing starts to define you at this point, for most people.

Again, this is terrifying. Even more terrifying than first sharing your trauma with close friends and/or family.

It is here when you start to worry about the impact sharing your narrative will have on those in your narrative. We worry that relationships will change, and be lost. We worry that the pain of others will be exacerbated unwittingly as a result of sharing our narrative. We worry that we will be shunned by those we love.

It is at this point that we weigh up the value of what we are doing, for the world, the community, and ultimately, ourselves. And then, if we proceed, we try to do it sensitively.

Owning our own voice is so important in the healing journey. Owning our voice and our truth.

We are raised to believe that truth is a singular concept. Something is true, or it isn’t. Defining truth, this is ‘true’; however, when it comes to our stories, my truth could be different to someone else’s truth because of perception.

If, in a situation, someone’s action impacted me more than others around me, I might remember the action more than the other things happening at that time, and others may not remember the action at all. This impacts my narrative.

My truth can be different to someone else’s. Both are still valid in the context of a life. Because healing needs to occur from where we are, not from where someone else is.

Someone can say, That isn’t true. It might not be for them. For the person sharing it though, it is. And, as a result, they need to rebalance (heal) it. Standing in our truth is frightening. We all want to belong. By standing up, we risk losing our sense of belonging.

It is important to remember, at this point, that whilst some will turn away from us, the universe always ensures balance, so others will come.

My truth is just that, it is my truth. As I move through my life, striving for harmony and happiness and all things beautiful, I need to do what empowers me to achieve these things. I need to be sensitive to the truths of others without compromising my own truth.

My truth is as valid as your truth. Even when they are different. Healing ourselves, heals others.

Let’s share our stories, rebalance our perceptions, and attain happiness.

Father-Daughter 😢

Our relationships with our parents are so fundamental to who we become as adults. I had a moment last night, watching Trouble With The Curve, which I’ve watched a heap of times, where I burst into tears, saying, “That’s me.”

Amy Adams’ character, Micky, confronts her dad, Clint Eastwood, about his rejection of her as a young girl. Her dad, raising a young girl, on the road for work, after his wife/her mother died, finds himself out of his depth when Micky is touched inappropriately by a horse trainer.

He beats the crap out of the guy, waits for the police to come after him, and moves Micky to live with relatives because he thinks she will be safer.

He never tells any of this to Micky. Her perception is that she wasn’t good enough for him, and she spends her adult years trying to please him and gain his approval. He is oblivious to all of this. He loves her, but doesn’t know how to communicate that.

I just bawled. I rewound the scene to watch it a few more times. It never had impacted so deeply before.

My tears were for my same feelings relating to my dad. Seeking that validation. Our perceptions are interesting things. I can now see that we tend to remember that which hurts us more than that which makes us smile. As kids, with minimal scope for broad perspective, we internalize the negative and create narratives that really focus on the negative.

The violence (aka discipline) told me I had to behave a certain way to not be hit, and the goal posts here were always moving. I never knew where I stood. I was also taught that I was responsible for everyone else (my sisters’ behavior), and that I wasn’t good enough if they misbehaved and I hadn’t stopped them. I also learned that I was different to my sisters. They were the pretty ones.

As a teen, who wasn’t overweight, but was a different build to my sisters, my dad would coax me to lose weight by offering me rewards. Looking back, I didn’t need to lose weight. I was fine. But, the narrative I was telling myself, that I perceived was being reinforced by the actions of my father, took over. And a key aspect of that, that I then internalized and still play over today, is that I am not good enough as I am.

I sense a list of memories are going to be made and Demartini’d very soon.

I now understand that my father’s context lead him to these choices. I now understand that self-worth is one of my lessons, that I chose, for this lifetime. However, the hurt was and is real.

That feeling of not being enough, not being valuable, not being deserving unless you meet another person’s criteria, is gut wrenching. My intellect was always validated by my father – I thrive here.

More work to be done.

Illness or Purging?

I was feeling very shoddy when I got home yesterday afternoon after a wonderful afternoon with my road tripping friend. In true form, road trips are never dull with Margo and we were caught just outside Hill Top in a hail storm. She knew it was coming; I told her not to put the energy out there. Her reading of the clouds was strong; it was too late either way. The weather has decided.

Super full moon. Energies all over the place; even the heavens needed to release what no longer served them.

In my mind, I had prepared a magnificent ritual for full moon for last night – you know, in honour of my intentions for ritual this year. I felt like utter crap.

I did a very downsized version of what I had planned. I’ll post the video here, but you must ignore the perspective because I couldn’t hold the phone in a more flattering way 😂

One of the benefits of aging, I’ve lost ego over my appearance always having to be perfect; what I’m doing is more important.

Anyway, I wasn’t sure if I was sick or if I was creating the sickness. I woke up this morning and if I’ve manifested it, I’ve done a pretty good job. Felt like utter shit all day. I achieved three things, two of them very early. I took the boys to the groomers, vacuumed and mopped the floors, and then slept on the lounge all day.

That’s not the third thing.

The third thing was yin yoga tonight. My body told me that no matter what, I needed to go. So, I did. My body was just blah and my belly so bloated. I started to get nauseous in some of the poses and then I did that vomit in the mouth thing. Gross, right. What can you do. It was only a tiny bit. Just enough to taste it.

The meditation was amazing. I went swimming with whales and went deep inside and deep under.

Came home. Showered. Vomited. Feel better. Sort of.

Now, I started thinking about the things I was going to release well before last night’s ritual. If you watch the video, you’ll see what they were; I can’t remember them all now (because I released them). I’m now thinking, I’m not sick, I’m purging that which no longer serves me.

I had another flashback to sexual abuse during one of the poses. Remember, I’ve Demartini’d my abuse. No emotional response. Acknowledged it. Breathed it in and then released it on the exhale. Did that a few times, moving deeper into the pose and pushing through the flashback. Kept breathing. Nothing negative. No emotional response.

Amazing.

I went outside last night to take a photo of the moon (wish I was a photographer with a camera at times like that) and a blue orb turned up in the photo, but I also saw it away from the screen. Googled it. Starseed. Yep.

Anyone that’s had a conversation with me about my adventures in Minnesota last year know I was activated and believe I’ve lived on other planets. Starseed has something to do with that.

Here’s the video, after the photo:

Haters gonna hate lol.

https://tinakmeyer.files.wordpress.com/2018/01/img_7488.mov

Ritual

What I really loved about India, and then Cambodia, is the respect that ritual is given by almost every person. The people embody their beliefs in ritual, and practice these rituals devoutly. I think this is missing from our western culture. I think we could gain a lot from ritual and mindful practice.

I had a phenomenal 2017. From what I have been reading and hearing, I’m in a minority. It wasn’t a perfect year, but it was very balanced. The good enabled and empowered me to keep a fairly balanced perception throughout the year (for the most part – I am still human – mostly lol).

Something I wanted to enact upon my return from India was to establish some rituals. This did not happen during 2017. Well, I did perform some rituals, but not regularly enough.

As a result, at a minimum, I am going to conduct two rituals every month. I am going to set them in my calendar today so that I have made the commitment to remember. The way I perform them may alter depending on my context and whereabouts each time, but it’s a start to embodying ritual within my world.

They are simple rituals.

Each new moon, I will set intentions for the next month and I will plant them in some soil in my kitchen (in a pot obviously).

Each full moon, on individual small pieces of paper, I will write each thing I want to rid my life of. I will say each one out loud. Instruct it to leave, and carefully burn the piece of paper to release it from my life/being/world.

Simple. Mindful. Reflective.

I am hoping it will inspire spiritual dedication and manifest real change in my life.

I will call on my guides, and invoke Green Tara (for protection), and cleanse my space. I always do this now when I conduct any healing work, for myself and for others.

Simple. Mindful. Reflective.

I think this will be my intention for 2018.