(40 days is a series of posts that began on November 4th. If you are interested in reading them in order, scroll down - otherwise read on and check out all my other musings...)
Sidenote to my loyal fans (all four of you :) ~ I finished my 40 days more than a month ago, but took copious notes and wrote draft posts while moving along the journey. Sorry I haven't posted - but here you go ~ if you are interested...frequent posts this week as they are written.
What I'm learning in this third week of my 40 day journey from fear to faith is a simple, yet for me, a difficult concept to grasp: change takes a while. Change takes time, patience (not a virtue I hold,) and a lot of good old compassion with one's self. HA. What a lesson. Not only am I trying to shift my consciousness, but I'm having to actually be patient and compassionate with myself? What. The. Hell? Clearly, all three are connected. Who knew? I did, sort of.
When you live your life with anxiety, there has to be some sort of negative self talk alive and well inside you. I have always been self deprecating as a way to joke and make light. What I didn't realize was habitual negative talk can take root and latch on to you, causing you to pull further and further away from your true self. The longer you rip on yourself, joking or not, the more your consciousness believes its true.
For me, I realize this on days when I was in neutral, just kind of drifting. I woke up one morning this week, did my meditation and journaled "I'm not feeling it today. Do I really have all I need within me? Was I really created from abundance, to live abundantly? How do so many other gals out there walk around smiling and playing and living happily without having to do a stupid journey/quest/project to better themselves. You're kind of a pain in the ass Neen. NO. Not kind of, but a TRUE pain in the ass." After ranting a bit more, I ended my entry with "Regardless of these negative thoughts, I will move onward, feeling blessed, loved and intend today on giving what I need to someone else."
I went about my morning, making the breakfasts, the lunches, kissing goodbyes and exercising. I went to drop off a carload of donations I'd been hoarding for months (more on my new ability to take action in another post.) As I grabbed the first box and carried it to the drop off room, I was overcome with a moment of infinite gratitude. Gratitude that what I was giving away served me for as long as it did. Gratitude I was able to use and enjoy everything I was leaving for someone else. Gratitude and hope that the next person to use the items would enjoy them and be better off for it.
I walked back out to my car to grab more, and saw a lady, mid-fifties, well groomed, average dress, standing near the trunk. She appeared from nowhere, so it seemed. I must have startled, as she said, "I'm just here to see if you need any help unloading?"
"Sure. I'd love it," I told her, still slightly surprised that I hadn't seen her milling around when I got there. Her name was Debbie and she liked to help the donors as her father helps run the donation room. She proceeded to chat with me about some of the books I had in my trunk and a few other items while I gladly begged her to take them - especially as she was helping me AND since I'd had my moment with gratitude a few minutes earlier.
On our third trip back to my car, she mentioned that this was the first she'd been back to the church since two weeks earlier, when she attended her 25 year old son's funeral mass. I stopped in my tracks and listened to her pain as she lovingly spoke of how much she missed him. When my eyes watered she asked me to please not cry as it took all her strength to wait to cry until she gets home. I had no clue what to say. Chatty Cathy speechless. So I hugged her. I hugged this stranger, this fellow human and fellow mother, so tight, and told her how sorry I was for her loss.
After many thanks and many "I'll be okay, I'll be okays," from Debbie, we parted ways. I sat in my car for a bit, drained, yet filled with what at the time I couldn't describe. But now I know it was wholeness. I felt whole. Despite the sadness, I gave Debbie what I needed that day. I gave her an abundance of love, I gave her hope, I gave her the goodness in me. By giving Debbie what I couldn't find myself that morning, I got it back and then some. By being the light for Debbie, I found the light myself.