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Monday, November 21, 2011

A Year After Detoxing

A year ago I was drowning in a sea of medications for mental health, sleep and pain. PTSD had swallowed my mind like a crunchy snack for over three years. My wake up call came after we returned from our honeymoon--it was time to work through my mental dis-ease on my own. The medications had taken a toll on my body, and my mind. I needed to see if I could ever get in a car, or quench my anxiety, fears, unrest or sleep without popping a pill. The desire to face a day, even in pain without a pharmaceutical aid, or a glass of wine, became bigger than my need to mask whatever lurked beneath my fragmented, river of unruly thoughts.

I had to hole up, literally, alone for days at a time. Go inside the pain. Swim, and do belly flops in the deep waters I feared would suck me down, down, down till I had no more air left in my withered lungs. The body aches, and agitation festered, and grew like yeast in warm water inside my belly. I literally writhed in agony, and sleep was illusive. Superman braved the storm of my anger, unleashed and often venomous--his beloved Wonder Woman had become quite unlovely to be around. I was ugly with a capital U. Yet even at my worst, he continued to toss me an anchor of love to hang onto. I honestly don't know how he did it, but somewhere, deep below the troubled waters, he saw I was also becoming BRAVE--with the cap lock on. Letting go of my chemical buoy has been one of the bravest things I've ever done. Ever...

During the last year I have also undergone an intense spiritual awakening. It's been a journey of letting go of all things that held me captive. Old spiritual belief systems I wore around my ankles like a ball and chain fell off as I open my eyes to truth as it was revealed to me. Guilt about what people would think about me, especially loved ones whom I used to walk with in a certain religious faith, dissipated in my new found freedom. I'd always resisted the idea of separation of mankind, as in the ideas taught in many religions of "our way is the only way", "our God is the only God", "heaven and hell", "our book and teachings are the only way to enlightenment", etc, etc, etc... This is also one of the bravest things I've ever done. Seeking, and finding, truth about who I am spiritually has held me up while treading the waters of rediscovery. I know without a doubt I am a part of journey designed by the Universe that only wants the utmost good for me, and all of mankind. I am eternally evolving. We all are.

My body still hurts, a lot, on a daily basis. I'm chronically tired. I fight the grip of isolation, and on most days would rather never leave my house or talk to loved ones on the phone. But on a whole, especially looking back in hindsight, I am indeed a whole new person I've grown to love and respect. I'm healing and my bouts with PTSD are lessening. My fears feel more manageable when I can laugh at them instead of believe them as truths. I sleep like a baby most nights. I rest when I need to. I've found unlimited tranqulity being in nature; my new church, my new swimming hole. I don't beat myself up for gaining weight due to the lack of physical agility I had before the auto accident. Fat floats--right? I share any toxic messages forming in my brain to my higher power or Superman instead of allowing them to explode inside me. My inner water wings are holding me up, and my Superman, is still faithfully floating beside me.

I am not advocating anyone stop taking medications without consulting with their doctors. I am only discussing what was right for me. I had to see what it was like to experience my world, my thoughts and my personal swimming lessons un-medicated. This post is merely a reflection on the laps I've swam in the last year.

My hope is that I can continue to be brave.
For another day, another week, another month.
Another year.
With all my toes in the waters of life.

What's the bravest thing you've ever done?

Friday, November 18, 2011

The Colors Of Gratitude

The view from my studio window.

The colors wash my heart with joy...

And leave me in a puddle of bliss.

The reflection of autumn in my bird bath.

I could sleep and dream in vivid detail
on a bed of leaves like these.
Couldn't you?

I wish you all a Thanksgiving full of love, grateful hearts
and colorful, charming conversations with loved ones.
As you prepare for Christmas, please try to support
local, small businesses, local artists and craft people.
Or make something yourself to give as gifts.
Occupy your hearts.
It's the best place to be for the holidays.


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