There is a way of being that doesn’t require us to do anything at all to feel good.
A swallow flying by, the bright green of our toothbrush, the way our cat moves his tail when happy… just these almost insignificant tokens are enough to fill our heart with joy.
Joy of being alive, joy to see life unfolding, joy to know that it is all the way it is supposed to be.
This feeling is always there, from the moment we are born. But very often we are robbed of it.
By the age of ten we may already be anxious, worried or just simply unhappy.
Sometime even earlier, especially if our caretakers are abusive. They may tell us that we are stupid, deficient in some ways, and/or critical. They may hit us and deprive us of any rewards.
The result is always the same: we feel less than good, less than capable, not worth seeking the best for ourselves.
The swallows in the sky or the bright colors we no longer notice. But we notice our oversized thighs, we pay heed to that constant voice in our head that tell us we f…ed up again. We go home, pour ourselves a glass of wine, turn on Netflix, and stare at the current show until it’s time to retire.
Some of us are luckier and don’t get penalized for being the wondrous, marvelous beings that we are at an early age. We grow up free and careless, believing the world is an oyster and we are the precious pearl within. We can’t wait to go away to college, meet the partner of our dreams and have a family.
Until… until the person we marry reveals himself or herself to be abusive. She or he yells for no reason, throws things, hits us, and calls us names. We watch in horror as our dreams are at once shattered in a thousand pieces.
But we stay. “Hey,” we tell ourselves, “I fought so hard for this!”
We stay until we can no longer recognize ourselves in the mirror.
Our eyes are swollen from crying, the shadows around them nearly black. We can now count the ribs on our abdomen, our hair is often matted and stringy; gone are the brilliant hues of golden brown, gone the flying tufts in the reverberating sun when life seemed so promising and so much fun.
Our partners may not be overtly abusive. They may simply withhold affection and love, but nonetheless nod their heads in disagreement when something is not done right. They are there physically, and yet they aren’t. We wake up to an empty bed (they are very busy men, usually) and retire alone in the hope to see him before we fall asleep.ì
At work our boss doesn’t understand how much more we are capable of doing. Heck, what we are asked to perform is SOOOOO elementary, even our grandmas could do the task at hand.
But we don’t get the chance, perhaps because someone else is prettier, perhaps because we don’t feel good about who we are after so much struggling at home without a supportive partner, and don’t dare ask for it.
In all these cases life has become an endless string of senseless days, a total burden to be dealt with because we have to, but not something that we look forward to embracing.
We wonder where we, the vibrant, young, attractive woman or child of only a few years before has gone. Can I ever get HER back, we wonder.
I am here to tell you that there is. And it is the ONLY way you are going to live a long life, because returning to your wholeness will add years to your existence, because the passion that will emerge from finding that woman will render you so passionate that you will literally feel on fire, morning til night.
How do I know?
Because I was one of them! I grew up in an abusive foster home in Italy, then escaped (I ran the four kilometers between their home and my Granny in the snow) to my Grandma’s at the age of six and a half, and stayed with her until I turned twelve.
Those few years righted the damage that was done to me and showed me that I had a place in life, that I was someone worth loving, that I was beautiful, inside and out.
But fate had other plans. At twelve, my single mother took me back with her. Within months she became addicted to drugs and alcohol, and we ended up nearly homeless.
The pretty, fulfilled, sunny girl I was became this depressed, sullen, pale green girl of fourteen/fifteen whose only food she ate was the morsels doled out in the streets.
Nonetheless, I remembered what it meant to be happy and whole, and never ever gave up the idea of returning there….
At sixteen, sick from intestinal infections, I fled my mother’s place and met up with my estranged father in a new city. It was extremely hard at first but from there I began my ascent back to a resemblance of whom I used to be.
But some habits are hard to change. Deep inside I still felt unworthy of love, and rejected every man who wanted to shower me with pleasure and love.
The pit moment of my journey to self-recovery came when I lost my baby boy at birth. Pregnant and bleeding at forty-two, I had rather listen to my boss who wanted me at work no matter what rather than the danger I was facing.
The fear of not being loved and accepted had rooted itself into my soul more than a thousand year old oak from the England countryside.
When I lie on the deliver table with my dead baby next to me I swore to myself and to God that I would never ever try to please someone else before loving myself and recovering the beautiful soul and spirit I knew I possessed eons before.
I quit my job and returned from school for a Bachelor in Women Studies and a Masters in Transpersonal Psychology. When my one and only daughter left for college I left my then husband and moved to Italy, where I was from originally.
I had no idea what I was going to do or who I was going to become. All I knew is that I had to heal from the decades of having vacated my own soul for the sake of receiving crumbs of approval and inspiration from others.
I have now been living in Italy for five years. It is far from perfect and life still presents its challenges.
But there is new person that is reborn inside of me, and I recognize her because now it bothers me not to sit on my balcony and watch the swallows fly by, nothing else to do, no worries whatsoever.
I feel a surge of happiness every day that I wake up in the imperial city or Rome, whether I have something planned that day, or not (my cat alone, a Japanese Bobtail with a short tail, provides me with plenty of entertainment).
It is from this standpoint, the vantage point of fullness and wholesomeness that creativity takes wings. It is from here that none of what has been or comes from the outside can deter us from creating what we are meant to create.
We all have a purpose, we all exist for a reason, and we are all intertwined. Not doing our part would deprive the world of that magical bullet that makes the engine run.
Welcome to your TRUE SELF.