The Price of Healing

I was absolutely knackered yesterday. I fell asleep early and didn’t achieve much at all yesterday. I think this is the price for Saturday morning’s accelerated healing. Tiredness occurs because my thoughts, emotions and body are all re-harmonising after a realization.

And, that’s okay. I publish my journey here so that I have memorialised the process for myself, and so that anyone going through similar things, can either find hope or realise its time to run šŸƒā€ā™€ļø hehehehe.

Other after effects of healing or during the healing process can include a runny nose (processing emotions), a little bit of an upset tummy (purging the toxins from the emotion), a sore throat (needing to speak out). If I go over on my ankle (which I’m prone to do when more healing is required), I will know there is more work to do. At this point, I’m stable-y upright still.

I am very conscious and plugged in to what is going on in my body. I think the IVF process taught me to be. I can generally work out what I need to do.

This morning I woke with a need to stretch out my body. So, I did. Just whilst I lay in bed. I felt where I was seized up and I stretched it out. Felt good. I still think I would like to own one of those stretching racks they used in the Middle Ages. How good would that be when your body felt tight.

I know that I am body focused this year. I’m in the process of changing my diet, I’ve added another yoga class to my week and I’m going to try Pilates next week (and hopefully like it).

I also like that I will be supporting three local small businesses run by women to do this.

It is so important to be cognizant of what you need, to express it, and to then make it happen.

“Wishin’ and hopin’ and thinkin’ and prayin'” is all well and good, but action needs to follow. Thanks, Dusty Springfield for the lyrics.

What do you need today? Who have you told? How are you going to make it happen?

šŸ¦‹

A Quickie Before Work

What a weekend. I’m knackered. After work today, I will be engaging in some massive self-care. Hopefully by sleeping hehe.

I feel great – apart from tiredness – I feel a level of calm and peace within. Life is on track and I’m finding that I’m doing significantly more things that fulfill my three key values.

Choices are amazing things. Fear can be crippling – best we don’t let it be.

What step can you take today to make your dream life a reality?

Oh My. Healing the trigger.

If you have read my last post, you were witness to a triggered reaction/break down from unwanted male attention. I had to stop writing and responding to comments, and move away to process what I was experiencing.

I felt shock at first, as I realised the extent of the violation because I connected it to my childhood sexual abuse. I have always known that my weight issues were connected to unresolved childhood trauma and the subconscious desire to protect myself. I have been wanting to resolve that – ask and you shall receive – as I roll my eyes at myself.

After the shock and the realisation I was breaking down mid post, I felt sick in my stomach and my shoulders tightened. This is where I usually carry stress. I walked through my house and fed my pets. Made the bed, opened the blinds and turned on my salt lamps.

Amidst that, I started to unravel purpose. I need to resolve more layers. I’m good with that. This is a healing opportunity, and a teaching and learning experience. That’s the purpose.

Then, to gratitude. Find the gratitude in the discomfort, Tina. What am I grateful for?

I am grateful that I am still healing, for I am human and I love learning. I am grateful for the immediate support I received, and for the love and solidarity that was so strong in their comments and messages. I am grateful that I have a voice that empowers and enables me, and hopefully others. I am grateful that I am strong and that I am resilient. I am grateful that as I write this, I can feel the cortisol that was coursing fast through my body, start to abate. I am grateful that I am taking deep breaths and that I know to do and how to do that. I am grateful that I know this is temporary. I am grateful for all of my past healing. I am grateful because this will not destroy me, not ever. I am grateful that I have grass to mow. I am grateful that I can apply all that I have learned, including self-care. I am grateful for my ability to help others. I am grateful for the intensity of the experience and for the ability to feel my body’s response so that I can empathize with others to become a better healer. I am grateful …

These are my first steps. I will take the time today to continue my work on me. I will give myself the space to do that. I will walk the talk.

I will cancel my commitments today. I will mow the lawn and water my plants. I will make a nutritious breakfast. I will focus on me. I will Demartini the experience and look at the benefits and drawbacks which I’ve already started to do.

The beauty of having done so much work is that I feel already that I’ve got this. This will work for me. I needed to do this. I will model what others can do.

Funny thing – I’ve been blocked bowel wise since this happened yesterday and I rarely get blocked. After this, my body let go. Something in that for all of us I think. Our bodies hold our trauma and our grief. That isn’t healthy.

The Detour – the impact of IVF and the importance of shared narrative

I’ve had an amazing couple of weeks of connections. Like, truly amazing. And I’m learning some interesting things and having to grapple with learning from some interesting things.

Yesterday, I was meeting with someone at the Square. I’m not often in Campbelltown anymore – too many people in those public places. But, as I walked from the car into the centre, I heard my name called.

I turned around and two beautiful people I’ve known for, gosh, twenty years or thereabouts, were walking with their young children. We stopped and chatted and they said they were going to Big W – in the opposite direction to where we were heading. I was surprised. Trace laughed and said, We saw you and we took a detour.

I was humbled. I have not been an easy person to know throughout the years for any of the long-standing friends I have; I disappear frequently and for long periods of time at times. I become very immersed in wherever my life currently is. These two fit into this category.

My IVF journey made seeing friends with little children and babies even harder, so I didn’t, I couldn’t. It’s easier watching their children grow, the children from that period, in pictures on Facebook. Nowadays though, it’s nice seeing those pictures come to life. Man, this isn’t going where I thought it was.

The day before yesterday, Wednesday, I established a soul connection friendship. We shared our stories. Many similarities, many differences. We navigated the terrain of difference together and learned how to communicate effectively and authentically with on another. I left her home, almost six hours later, knowing I had reconnected with another member of my soul tribe.

Part of our sharing of stories involved me talking about my IVF journey. I don’t really ever talk about the whole process for me – there doesn’t seem to be much need and I blogged most of it here. It was nice talking about it though.

It was a difficult journey. It was hell emotional. It was my detour I think. I had to go through that to get here – empowered, whole, authentic.

I wouldn’t wish the uncertainty, the drugs and their ensuing impact, the alone-ness of the journey, on anyone. However, I am stronger for it.

The person I met yesterday, to talk about reiki and attunements, has walked a similar IVF path to me. Funnily (or not – the universe is a little bit of a prankster), we went to the same primary and high schools, and her brother was in my classes most of our schooling life. We have crossed paths (or possibly in the corridors and playgrounds at school) without realising the significance that would later emerge. It’s a very small world.

I caught up with a small group of girls I adore, girls I met through teaching at Reddall. Again, lots of laughs and honesty, and genuine conversation. Shared experiences. Again, some talk of fertility and struggles that come. In that group of four, two of us have miscarried and two of us have struggled to fall pregnant.

These conversations show how important having people in your life to share your experiences with are. Our shared narratives enable healing. Not just in one, but in all.

I love women’s conversations. They enrich me. They connect us.

My closest female relationships today all felt the pressure of my IVF journey in some way or another. Those women, my sisters, share an unbreakable bond with me now though. I know that in my heart. They couldn’t get rid of me if they tried. I will always pop up in their lives. The path we walked and navigated during very dark times for me has strengthened all of those relationships in the long term. They are oak trees.

I think this is our strength. As women, when we are authentic and vulnerable, we see our similarities rather than our differences. Our shared narratives empower and enable deep conversation which yields deep healing.

I have another recently connected soul friend. We were friends in the heart before we met face to face. The reason I connected with her is because she has created a network of women to support one another in business, but mostly in life. She reaches out to women, prompting them to share with one another to push themselves further. I believe she comes from a pure heart and pure purpose. And I respect and love her for that. She wants women to find themselves and creates opportunities for just that.

I am surrounded by exceptionally strong and powerful women, and we share more similarities than differences. I am extremely grateful for my life and for the people in it. I am blessed by meeting more and more sisters and being able to share and learn from each other’s narratives.

Ultimately, we all want the same things: love, support and happiness. Together, we achieve them.

Fear & New Opportunities

When we let go of something that no longer serves us, no longer brings us happiness, it creates space for new things and new people to come into your life.

There is always fear when we make a change to our life. It doesn’t matter how small or large that change may be, fear of the unknown and the what if always lurks.

Liz Gilbert, author of Big Magic, recounts the way she handles fear and I’ve found it useful. We can’t ignore the fear, so we acknowledge it. She uses the metaphor of taking a drive. She tells fear to sit in the back seat, so it is acknowledged, but she tells fear to keep its mouth closed – it has no voice – and she does what she needs to do, drive her car.

Sometimes, too, it can help to write yourself a permission slip. Brene Brown is a huge advocate for writing yourself a permission slip. The act of giving yourself permission just makes it a little easier to do what you need to do for yourself.

Fear is useful. It keeps us humble. We just can’t let it control our lives. Fear keeps us small. None of us are small. When we aren’t living our best life, we can’t be our best self, and that robs the world of what we were put here on Earth at this time for.

When I left teaching, I was scared and sad. I loved being in the classroom. I thought I would die at Reddall, teaching the grandchildren of the children I had taught.

Letting go of a stable and secure income was difficult. Terrifying. I’d only ever really known teaching. But, it became infinitely more difficult to stay somewhere where my values no longer aligned with my employer’s values. I was sooooo unhappy. I hated going to work. I had to change.

I left gradually. I built a business up. I had enough stability in that to leave teaching.

As a result, I have more energy, my passion for life is back, and there is space in my life for new things. I’m 47 and feel a youthful zest for life that I haven’t felt in years.

Change is scary. Change is necessary. We ALL deserve to feel passionate and happy in life. You have to be vulnerable and you have to leap into the unknown sometimes.

Self Perception

Two and a bit years ago, when I was in Varanasi, India, on a life changing retreat with Alana Fairchild and some incredible women, I realised that the label of shyness no longer applied to me.

I realised this because the women I connected with, informed me that I was basically full of it. I hadn’t realised that I had grown through my shyness; the label was limiting and false. That reality of shyness was no longer real. My perception was restricting my growth.

Letting go of that label, literally just letting go, has empowered me to own who I am and wear it with pride. I meet people now without fear and project myself wholly.

That has resulted in me flourishing. I am standing in my truth and holding myself with pride. I like who I am. I’m not perfect, but I’m perfect in every moment.

Sometimes, moving forward requires us to let go of the labels we use to identify ourselves.

I also let go of the school teacher label and my life has opened up. I have let go of the ugly and unattractive and fat labels. They no longer serve my higher purpose. I see myself as attractive, open and beautiful now (except bad hair months lol).

List the labels you identify as. Ask yourself: does this label serve me or restrict me? If it restricts you, let it go. Write it on a piece of paper and burn it into oblivion (over a kitchen sink with a working tap).

Similarly, if a label serves you, collect them all into one piece of paper, add other ‘labels’ you would like to be, and plant that piece of paper in the earth.

Let them grow. Let you grow. Empower yourself.

Unsolicited Advice šŸ¤Ŗ

My whole life I have had very strong opinions about a lot of things. I was idealistic, passionate and very focused on my vision for this world. I would listen to the views of others, but only ever add to my arsenal of opinions rather than change them.

As we begin to age, I think we lose or temper some of that fervour, and some of my opinions have moved closer to the right side of politics (not right as in accurate, right as in right wing). The delivery of those ideas though would always encompass support and education.

For me these days, empowerment of individuals is vital to happiness and fulfilment. I guess that’s my underlying value and philosophy for living. People need to become empowered, by themselves or through a facilitated process.

In New South Wales in Australia, where I live, we have to vote in a State Election at the end of March.

I have always taken my vote seriously because the only dictatorship I would like to live in is one dictated to by me. When I turned 18, way back in the dark ages, and my first vote was coming up, I fastidiously researched (without Google I might add) the philosophy of each major party in Australia at the time (Liberal, Labor, Greens and the Democrats) and then I researched their leaders and then I found out about my local candidates.

I thought it was important to know all of this. During my twenties, I became involved in local politics, joined a political party, became active, a little militant, and served.

During my thirties, I became disillusioned. Candidates that WERE the best choice weren’t being supported by Head Office as much as they should be and I saw the yucky side of party politics.

Now, towards the end of my forties, having resigned from the political quagmire of school and education bureaucracy, I feel my passion and voice returning.

It has been bothering me that there is an election coming and I don’t know who to vote for. Here in Australia, politics and governance has become an ego riddled joke. Our Prime Minister changes with the winds and politicians don’t really seem to care about us real people and what we want.

So, for the first time in my life, I’m looking very seriously to vote for a candidate that quite possibly won’t gain office this time, but might next time. I’ve gone back to grass roots, and I think I’m going to vote for my local independent.

I met them on Saturday. They are traveling around the electorate to meet and genuinely hear from their potential constituents. Irrelevant who it is. I’m not trying to tell you who to vote for. That’s personal choice and your values may be different from mine.

I am suggesting though, that you find out about your candidates and the parties they belong to, and don’t ignore the independent candidates. Some independent candidates are stooges from the major parties placed in the ballot to extend the preferential votes. Find out.

Find out what each candidate stands for and don’t just vote a way that you always have – I truly believe our major parties need to know how disgruntled we are that they do not choose the needs of their constituents over their own and/or party needs.

It’s time for a political shake up and massive awakening in our country, and we start with our vote at the next elections.

And, yep, after months, two posts in a row hehehe.

The Lessons In Death

A couple of years ago, you may remember, my grandfather died. He was not my grandfather by blood, but the grandfather that was provided because my parents’ parents were in Finland and Germany. I never met them. My parents worked hard to create a surrogate family of grandparents and aunts and uncles for us.

Yesterday, my grandfather’s wife, my grandmother, died.

I pause and stare out at the incredible landscape before me as tears surface. The chimes that had been sounding stop, as if time stands still, but the birds do not. I hear them chirping and chattering throughout the many valleys in front of me. Two small rabbits bounce through the grasses, avoiding the watchful eye of the territorial magpie. The breeze picks up and the chimes cascade and wash over me.

Sigh.

I am sad. For unexpected reasons.

She had been ready to go weeks ago. Medications kept her breathing and kept her heart beating. I will miss the knowledge of her existence in this realm, with me. In the hospital, we laughed and shared. I was blessed enough to be able to tell her exactly what she had meant to me in this life. I could tell her I loved her.

Another pause. Another sigh.

Looking out across the mountains and the valleys, I realise how blessed I am. The breadth of this landscape enables perspective. We are all born. We will all die. Our times here are fleeting; the trees and the mountains will easily outlast us all.

And, that is okay.

Life, as the old cliche goes, is short. We can resist change or we can embrace it. We can create chaos or we can create peace. It is our choice. We can focus on the negativity of life or we can bring life to balance. We can be inspired, or we can be cynical. All choices. We can stand still, we can become stuck or we can strive to move forward, carrying with us all that we gain along the way.

Healing truly is a process. It requires a hell of a lot of hard work. It requires rests along the way; time to reflect on how far you have come and time to just be to let it all integrate. My work has garnered strengths and peace. I mark Aunty Val’s passing in my soul, but I choose to celebrate her existence in my life rather than hold on to her passing.

I am grateful for a very developed belief system and faith that enables me to know she isn’t far away from me, and within reach whenever we may need each other.

Thank you, Aunty Val, and to Uncle Ian, for being my grandparents and shielding me from pain, as best you could, as I grew up. Thank you for the wonderful memories and laughter and sense of family, But, most of all, thank you for loving me and reminding me I was enough. Just as I was.

Because Iā€™m human … sometimes šŸ˜œ

Yesterday was an interesting day. It ended in frustration at what I perceive to be the inefficiency of the health system.

This morning was also interesting. After going to bed very late (happens because I finish work so late), I woke this morning with a strong message from the universe.

The lump in my breast (more than likely a benign fibroamenoid), the smashed thumb and the smashed car – all on the left side – are signs to let go of needing to control and be in control.

A shock, I know lol. I’m usually so trusting šŸ˜³

And, that message is right. Life has a fluidity that, when trusted, leads us to exactly where we are meant to be, in peace. I guess it’s similar to having faith in God. But, different too.

I arrived for my appointment on time. I was quizzed about cancelling the mammogram. It was accepted. I was relieved.

I had the ultrasound. Nothing unexpected. A big lump on my left breast, near the surface, very obvious. The routine questions:

When did you discover it? How long do you think it has been there? Do you have a family history of breast cancer? Any cancer? When was your last mammogram? Do you have the slides?

My last mammogram was in my twenties when I had been hit by a student throwing something and it resulted in a lump. So, no, I do not have the slides. In fact, never received the slides.

No history of any cancer.

I found it two and a half weeks ago. I hadn’t noticed it during my last self-exam. No, I don’t remember exactly when that was, the last three months or so.

Why didn’t you come earlier?

I booked in with the doctor and it took me a week to get an appointment. Then, I immediately booked in here and today was your first free appointment. I called eight days ago to book in.

Oh. And giggles, God love her.

Then the doctor came in. Felt the lump. Looked at the scans. Asked the questions. Explained that whilst he is fairly certain it’s a fibroamenoid, he is concerned that it grew suddenly when usually they are with you since menstruation starts. I mentioned the IVF for five years. Faces changed and ohs were emitted.

Yep. IVF – the gift that keeps giving.

Again, for me, a lesson in trust over control. One I think I’ll still be learning on my death bed lol.

Then, half naked, that gross gel over my chest, Why did you opt out of the mammogram?

I gave my reasons.

I don’t want to pressure you. It’s your choice, it’s your body. But …

I got so frustrated. I know enough to know I didn’t want it, but I can’t argue with a doctor. Ended up with the mammogram too.

Frustrated with my lack of balls here. And, that frustration lasted until this morning’s message.

I’m at peace now. Wish I’d been dressed and standing for that argument. There’s a vulnerability that is disarming on a table half dressed. But, it is what it is.

I am a work in progress. Constantly evolving and learning.

I’ll be fine though – I know that for sure.

Pic 1 – visual metaphor – Tina yesterday between scans lol

Pic 2 – nice view behind the visual metaphor

Pic 3 – the sunrise of illumination and trust this morning

šŸ˜‰ yep, I’m crazy lol

Nurturing

Two weeks ago, I found a massive lump in my left boob. Once, finding a lump would have sent me into a massive tail spin. This didn’t.

I felt a stillness from within, a trust that this is meant to be, for whatever reason. Whatever it is, I will deal with it, I’ll manage it, I’ll do what needs to be done. And, if it is worst case scenario, then I’ll make sure I make the most of each new day and live, doing things I love, being with people I love. And, the stillness and peace continues.

A couple of days after finding the lump, I made an appointment with a doctor. The appointment was last Wednesday, the earliest I could get.

My appointment was for 11.20. I had clients from 12.30. I thought I could make it. However, ended up cancelling first two clients due to the doctor running late.

Getting in to the car to go to the appointment, I smashed my left thumb in the door jam as the door closed unexpectedly. I have no idea how it happened. It hurt. My language was very unladylike lol. I held an ice pack around my thumb on my drive to the doctors.

Congested car park. One spot next to a brick wall. Figured I could make it. Figured incorrectly. Metal from the door jam to the back wheel on the left side pulled back. Yep. What the.

Pulled out. Drove to another spot, further away. Looked at the damage. Shook my head. Went in to surgery to wait for two hours. Still relatively calm.

I suffer high blood pressure (is it any wonder lol), but came off my medication last December because I didn’t like the side effects. I started meditating more to compensate. Also, watching diet and monitoring stress and self care strategies. I know I’m not a doctor, but I know my body best and me. Drugs weren’t helping; they were making it worse. No point managing one thing only to create others, and realistically, the drugs were managing the high blood pressure, not correcting it.

The doctor, whom I haven’t seen before, but I prefer a female for female things, looked at me, then to her screen, then back to me, and exclaimed, You look amazing for your age! I laughed.

Confirmed I have a tumour, not a cyst, and gave me the referrals for a mammogram and ultrasound.

Blood pressure 150 over 100. I was ecstatic. Yes, that’s high. But, that was my blood pressure medicated, occasionally it went lower, but not by much. More often, it was higher.

For me, on a day I had smashed my thumb in the door and smashed the back of my car, then had to wait for a doctor and cancel clients, whilst having a lump that after googling, I knew was a tumour, this blood pressure reading shows that I’m managing it! Ecstatic.

No family history of breast cancer. Older than 40. Approaching menopause. Doctor thinks it is more likely it is benign too.

I’m not worried. I trust that whatever is going on, is ultimately for my benefit.

One thing I know for sure, every time I’ve perceived I’ve gone through hell, I have discovered exquisite beauty and greater happiness on the other side. Every negative situation has created greater positivity in my life.

The universe is always in balance. Where there is pain, there is also joy. Where there is hardship, there is also ease. I trust that I will be okay. I am okay now.

Three things – left side – nurturing the feminine. I have lived so much of my life in masculine energy, it makes sense I need to balance my energy.

At school, I’m called on for masculine energy. In my business and life, I’m more feminine in my energy. Affirmation that my time in organised education is up. Time to nurture me, just like I’ve nurtured so many others.

I had a healing client yesterday. Seeing her face open and light come back into her soul, I knew that I had made the right decision.

Everything happens for a reason.

We all need to trust that.

Oh, and after extensive research, I will have the ultrasound but not the mammogram. It’s my right to say no.