My emotions seem to take U-turns daily, sometimes hourly.
Yesterday and the day before I was consumed with hate and hurt.
Today, hope and humility as I break the memory cassette loop.
I am not sure exactly in the end what did it, but perhaps it was all of it, all the different techniques plus a good night sleep, over 10 hours, uninterrupted and non-alcohol induced.
Yesterday, one of the exercises in my book was to answer ‘what brings you joy?’. Being in such a negative place, I was frustrated and angered by the question and threw the book down as I couldn’t think! I couldn’t answer that question.. each answer taking me back in to the negative memory loop.
But today, through my morning practice of mindfulness, the answers became clear. Being refreshed from sleep, the meditation practice was less of an ‘escape’ from the reality of recent weeks but back to how I love to use the time: to remind myself of how much I have to be grateful for and revel in those warm, glowy feelings of gratitude.
I have family. So much family love and support from both sides, parents, siblings, extended family, dogs and cats, all there, stalwart no matter what decisions I, we, take. Providing strength and unity.
I have friends. So many friends whose warmth and arms I feel all the time as they circle around me (and us) giving the time and space needed but the open invitation to reach out at any time.
I have health. Despite so much trauma and stress inflicted on me, I have had no sign of illness, not even a sniffle. My body is slighter, but still strong and so badass.
I have a business and a full life. I have a business that is running itself with loyal and valued clients and a team that has my back as well as their own. I have a life full of opportunity and excitement waiting for me to pick it back up, people to help, children to inspire. I can hold my head up high and put my shoulders back with pride of who I am and what I do.
And above all I have my men. My little men. My beautiful little men who are my everything and more. And my Big Man. A broken big man who is prepared to fix himself and at the same time spend the rest of his life fixing me and our family with selflessness and gratitude.
So today, I was able to answer the question – what brings me joy?
My boys, being a family, being with my Big Man; super Sundays and super Saturdays. Love and laughter and being surrounded by family and friends. Working hard and enjoying what I do, whether I get paid or or not.
There is a part of me that whispers that he doesn’t deserve the chance and the opportunity to fix anything. The same part of me that whispers that I could get hurt again. But isn’t that fear talking?
So as I stood at the entrance to the park, there were two paths. And it made me think. Fear or love? Grief or happiness? Pain or joy? Show up or hide? Hate or embrace? Leave or stay? Past or future? Regret or create?
There is never just one straight path, no singular answer. There are always crossroads and possibly with each step there is another crossroads and another choice to make. And I have the power to determine which way to go, not based on a book or a map, but on what I can see and feel is ahead.
And while there may be paths, there is also the way of no path… just a great big expanse to let loose and run free through. To run in whatever direction that feels good in that moment…the ability to run straight, fast, or meander slow … the choice to make wrong turns, to make leaps, to falter, slip, stumble and fall… to lie there and look at the sun, the sky and the clouds and when you have caught your breath, to turn over and get back up and keep running in the direction of what feels right.
And when I was running free – listening to a random play list, Bon Jovi started singing. A sign reminding me to believe in love. And to follow the path determined by your heart, your gut and instincts.
And as I skipped and leapt over leaves, I started to sprint. And my goal wasn’t fairy tales and fairy land; fairyland shouts of fiction. My goal is a life of wonder, of gratitude, of love, peace, harmony and always joy. And I felt powerful, because I know I can create that.
Tony Robbins says that it is in the moments of decision that your destiny is shaped. And in those moments of decision, you have to take decided action. That you can’t sit on the fence. You have to take a risk and jump all in.
So I am back to being Alice… but this time I am creating my own version of Wonderland. And each time a memory has me back in the negative loop, I shout out loud, ‘I am brave and bold and I choose Wonderland!’
Wonderland is the future I am in control of creating and that is where I am headed. Bags packed. On a train. Heading home to my men. Heading home to my joy.