Resisting Self-Acceptance

Last week I decided it was time to step up my game and face some fears I had been skirting. So I meditated 5-8 times that day. Each day since I have continued at least 3 bouts of meditation per day to help clear out my fears…and to meet my spiritual goals.

In this time I’ve noticed some shifts that were positive. I’ve had a greater sense of peace and calm, overall. My intuition has become more on point. It has become easier for me to have clarity where once confusion reigned. It also seems some of my most challenging patients are improving suddenly (unexpected bonus).

Yet, I’ve just recognized that it is as if I am at battle with myself. In my quest to become a better person, I am resisting where I am right now. This is building more resistance and no wonder my craving for “sweet treats” is on the rise (and my libido and creativity have all but disappeared). While I’ve been healing on many levels, I’ve also been at war with myself on others. The loss of my creative drive and the increased sweet tooth are signs for me that something is “off.”

While it is important to “shed my old skin” to grow into the next level, it does not aide in my growth to resent or resist the skin I am in now (figuratively and literally). 

Once again I see where Love is still conditioned. To love oneself unconditionally, that means accepting myself for who I am today and then paving the way for greater growth (and I don’t mean my waistline).

So again the edges can be sharp in finding the balance between what is and what is to be…the razor’s edge sometimes can cut deeply when unaccepting of what is; focusing on pushing the advance. Learning to truly Love oneself means loving the parts that seem less than ideal.  For these are the areas where the Love is most depleted…and thus the most needed. 

Feed Love to the parts that are depraved of Love to be able to feel complete. 

“Clark, you can’t run in fear. Your gifts are who you are,” Martha Kent on Smallville.

Namaste and Metta

Guided Meditations:

Connect with the Love Within You

Metta Meditation 

Submitting to Femininity Part I: Into the Pink

From Steel to Mercury

As I have long considered the feminine to be weak, I have consistently drawn upon my inner Animus or masculine seed when in need of strength. It has become my habit to use a steely “take no prisoners” attitude of will and strength to exert myself in the world on a daily basis. His strength has been instrumental in getting through things like PT school and Divorce. Even a good deal of my writing has been with a steamroller approach, force feeding my readers snippets of my adventures and avoiding some of the deeper inner work.
Animus is not taking a beating, instead, I have asked Him to fall back to the FOB. He’s there in the command tent if I need a QRF, growing in his own masculinity while I surrender further into my own femininity. He very much still has His place.
With this change in command, I find myself having difficulty adjusting to this new level of surrender while I adjust to the liquid feel of my mercurial strength. I am further submitting to my understandings of the Divine Feminine mysteries through submission vs domination, through allowing vs steamrolling.
A series of books that have helped me in this endeavor: He & She by Robert A. Johnson, Understanding Masculine & Feminine Psychology, respectively. I highly recommend both of them for men and women alike. They are quick and powerful reads, both less than 85 pages each. I read He first and began to see where I use my animus excessively. In She I began to understand how to embrace my feminine essence more fully and plan to reveal what I’ve learned here and later in this series.
First a poem!

Pink!

How many ways can I hate the color Pink?
Stifling, suffocating, robbing of my
strength that evil-doer: pink!

Weakness to me: kryptonite
pink screams meek (even its name is weak)
Truly, this color is foul: it stinks! pink!

I did not learn the gender of
my children before they were born.
Their nursery painted green; no fucking pink!

Old fashioned, perhaps,
or was it that I didn’t want
to throw up pink?

Pepto bismol everything
seemed so dismal,
I couldn’t think! Pink!

In neutrals, browns and blues,
I dressed my daughter as a toddler,
now at 8, her favorite color: yep, pink!

Having begun to embrace my feminine.
Slowly, sometimes begrudgingly
embracing this color: pink!

Gaslighting the Past: 20/20 Hindsight

In having my Animus as the ruling King of my inner landscape for so long, I can now see why ex lovers have often resorted to gaslighting to control me. Gaslighting is an extreme form of passive-aggressive behavior that is used to diminish the target, to bring her under the control of the aggressor. It is incredibly undermining and I personally consider it a form of brainwashing.

My ex-husband did this to me for years without my awareness. Through poking at my hot buttons (and I had many in my wounded state), he lead me to feel like I was completely crazy. While I’ve readily admitted to some of my own inner crazy, I do not feel I was ever completely crazy, or at least not for long.

Several years ago I started to see the pattern. Then when he began to act like he was my father and treated me like I was 16, when I was 38, my eyes were suddenly wide open. Within days of seeing this I was asking for a Divorce: it took a few days for me to gather my strength and figure out how to approach him.

When I began to see the early emergence of this pattern with a younger guy I was dating back in December, I told him I was bothered by his behavior. When this continued, I broke things off just a few days before Christmas (he did ask when I stopped responding to his messages if we were fighting or broken up, I’m grateful he made it easy for me). He was use to dating women half my age who I guess would put up with this (after all that was the age I started dating my ex). Needless to say, I saw the signs early having lived that for so long I was not willing to take that path again. He later asked me out to lunch

If you would like to read more about gaslighting, follow this link. Thank you to Violet for sharing this so that I could read about it and gain a better understanding and name it!

 

Earning Bling: Running and Racing

Following the demise of my marriage, I relied heavily on my Animus for launching me out onto my own two feet. To increase my Animus’ power, I began running to raise my masculine energy. I needed to feel strong again, protected.

It was when I learned to surrender into my internal emotional waters that the excess weight truly began to drop off. A hip injury kept me from running, so it was soon thereafter that I started blogging under “Tiffanyrunningfree.” Then in October running became being – an outward expression of my inner softening. Now I find myself surrendering further into a place that is even more mind altering.

The Mighty Oak Tree

The mighty oak tree has been a symbol of strength for me. Most of my adult life I have desired to be this tree. Solid. Strong. Unquestioning. Unwavering. Now, I am beginning to realize it is not my job to be the tree.

According to yin energy I am the water and I am the earth. I see now where it is my place to support the mighty oak tree as it would not exist without me. While I am not the structure of the Oak, I am the matrix, the hidden strength that allows the Oak to be its best. Without my essences, the tree dies of thirst or is unsupported by the earth; falling, failing without nourishment and nurturing support.

By allowing the strength of my inner feminine to rise up through the phloem and xylem, I give strength to the tree. Replete in my own feminine strength, I allow Him to be full in His. By submitting to my truth in trust of myself and of Him, I allow Him to rise up stronger as the mighty Oak.

I am beginning to see this forest through the trees. Just as I am finding strength in my perceived weakness, the true strength of divine femininity is found in nurturing.

Now I see myself as water spreading into the branches and the leaves. Evaporating, turning to steam, melding with the Air that is Him. Falling back down through His air as Rain, filtering myself through the soil, being wicked back up by His roots and the cycle begins again. My travels are the infinite path of lifting and falling, traveling inwards (involution) then outwards (evolution). This infinite path will be revisited in another part of this story of recovering the truth of the divine feminine.

The Feminine Role

The feminine locus of control is found in the emotional, internal realms through nurturing. Both as men and women, our internal feminine role is to manage the internal emotions to prevent emotional flooding and burning. As such, we must learn to swim through our emotions without allowing them to control us. Likewise, we must stoke the hearth fires to keep the fires lit without allowing it to rage uncontrolled and burn the household nor to scorch the earth.

To manage the internal waters, it is our job to go within to swim through the rivers of our emotions and to come out unscathed. This cleansing helps us to shed the dross of our past, so that we attract less and less of that old energy to us. When we allow life to pass through us, instead of trying to grasp it and hold onto the pain or the pleasure, it is then that we free ourselves to be present. By being more fully present, we collect less dross. Our pain, our dross, our grasping at the past and fearing our future, prevents us from experiencing life to its fullest potential: the present moment is truly a gift we give ourselves and the people in our lives.

The Feminine Supports The Masculine 

As previously mentioned, feminine strength is found in managing the internal and emotional environments through nurturing. By giving ourselves permission to live in our strengths as women, we give men permission to live in their strength as men. Much like the support that the Mighty Oak tree derives from the earth and water, the feminine strength is nurturing from the inside, whether this is within the home or within the internal emotional environments.

Masculine strength is found in managing the external environment through physical protection. Men who are strong in their divine masculine energy on all levels seek to protect, and not harm, women. In Traditional Chinese Medicine Yang protects the yin energies and yin supports the Yang energies. This pattern is true with the expression of the balanced masculine and feminine: He protects her and she nurtures Him.

Koyaanisqatsi: Life Out of Balance

When humans feel we are lacking our own personal power we often feel the urge to control others outside of ourselves through force or manipulation such as with the aforementioned gaslighting. On the contrary, when we are strong in our power, we have less and less desire to control others. “The more at peace I am with me, the less I feel I need to control you to keep me comfortable” is the thought I have here.
When out of balance in our own masculinity and femininity, we create relationships that reflect this state of being. Feminine energy when out of balance has a tendency towards enabling behaviors that support the abuser (I am NOT blaming the victim). Masculine energy when out of balance has a tendency towards striking out through emotional, physical, sexual and/or mental abuse. This reflects my marriage where I was a co-dependent nurturing the gaslighting man who “protected” me from myself (no blaming).

Denying the Feminine

When Animus ruled my inner world, my Queen was weak and could not protect/nurture my emotions. Her absence meant my emotions were unprotected as I was not receiving her feminine energy of protection. So I was wide open emotionally; my internal immune system was even weak (and it’s still recovering).
Stealing from the masculine energy, I believed I was stronger, but this was not the truth. In fact, I was more vulnerable that way. While I recognize I will need to continue to borrow from the Animus from time-to-time, to live only through Him means that I am ignoring and starving my inner feminine. To be healthy and balanced as a woman, most of my power needs to be drawn from within my feminine ability to nurture and manage my internal emotional landscape.
Since changing command, I feel my work here has changed. No longer is this inner work about attracting a mate. Now my work is about a return to All of me being in balance, with my Queen in command and the King back at the FOB. Yes, I am woman! I no longer have a need to roar.

 

**

“The Turning Away” speaks to me of my own turning away from femininity as well as my conscious choice to re-align with my divine feminine. There are so many lines in this song that have always resonated with me, and in listening to it play as I re-read this piece, I see my muse is far more brilliant and genius than me! “No more turning away from the weak and the weary….On the wings of the night…using words you will find the strength…it’s not enough to just stand and stare….is it only a dream that there will be no more turning away?” No pun was intended with this song being by Pink Floyd, though I’m sure my muse intended it!

Namaste

Image: Google reflects how I felt when I read “She” for the first time.

Body Image: These Feet

It is said that a man’s foot size is proportional to the size of his penis.
Not sure what that means for women, nor if the former is really true…

So with that you probably realize,
my feet are of not a regular size.

I have one large foot and
one slightly still large,
yet smaller foot.

My right foot is a size US 12/13 women’s (~10.5 mens)
with the equivalent in the UK 43.
Yet my left foot is a full size to 1.5 smaller.

In this picture above,
my feet are both fully back into the heel of the shoe,
you can appreciate the size difference. Freakish.

When I was younger I wanted to chop off my beautiful toes.
So hard it has been to find the right shoes.

Learned young to buy the men’s shoes,
hard to feel feminine at times.

So I often wear my shoes until apart they fall.
Hating to buy new ones to suit my needs.

Payless carries my size on the shelves,
yet they but it’s disappointing when the shoes fall apart.

Flip flops are the best, but cannot
meet my work’s code of dress.

~~

My feet have carried me through many a storm.
So often I take them for granted,
even with all of the pavement
they’ve pounded on my way
to nearly 30 finisher’s medals
in just over a year’s time.

Thank you feet, for
not giving up on me,
even when I could not
appreciate all that
you’ve done for me.

Learning to appreciate you,
regardless of your shape or your size.
taking the time to find the right shoes,
to protect you as you carry me through.

Thank you, to you I owe much gratitude,
my beautiful mismatched feet!

~~

Body Image Series

Namaste
__/|\__ Ananda & Metta

2016.02.22

Escaping My Story

dissociative amnesia is considered a mental illness. for me, I consider it a blessing. For without dissociating sexual trauma, I would have lost my mind. For the very people who were my protectors abused me over many years at an age before I knew my full name, much less how to spell it. for over thirty years I lived in constant fear and anxiety, the source of which remained mostly blind to me. Some could see the symptoms of sexual trauma & PTSD; only those who paid attention closely though. I often hid as much as I could in self-protection; my M.O. was to be invisible as much as possible

 

I wanted to be anywhere,
but here.
This is not happening,
roll away,
get away.
Fight with all you’ve got: nothing.
When the body cannot escape it,
the mind does.

I see myself playing
outside in the yard.
Another sunny day.
My body left behind,
defenseless yet with
some feelings of bliss?

Learning now not
to trust my body,
bliss during this?!

~~~

Memories long forgotten,
suppressed,
repressed.
My mind was safer
than my body.
Escape my means to
survive this hell.

This escape proved
to be effective in
times of complete
loss of control.
It happened so much,
sometimes I forgot the way home.

~~~

I spent most of my life
wishing I could not be seen.
Early budding breasts,
I wanted to hide.
Flesh that brought attention
by prying eyes.
In their gaze, I only felt
the shame.

Middle school brought
a new discovery on Halloween.
Dressed as a Beatnik,
I discovered the comfort
of wearing all black.
Practicing playing the Cello
at lunch time to avoid
the students, who drove me back.

High school brought
the black leather jacket,
the combat boots.

Listening to everyone’s woes
about their home lives;
not understanding why my
suffering was so deep.

The truth I hid so well,
I hid it from myself.
Hiding my accomplishments,
hiding my grades,
hiding behind my black armor.

So many then thought I was a lesbian,
looking back it was a kind of security.
I preferred to chase than to be chased.

College brought a return of color
to my wardrobe.  Slowly,
at first I felt so vulnerable
without all of my armor.
Broomstick skirts,
bra-less in thin white t-shirts.
Starting to feel ok in my
sexuality. But only a little;
still wearing the black leather jacket:
my protection.

I still chased the boys,
fading from view from those
who showed interest.

~~~

I could wear a mask.
I could pretend to be happy.
Beneath it all, I was
suffering, silently.
Years of counseling to
raise my self-esteem.
All alone in my suffering.

Strong feelings,
I would suppress.
And like anything pushed back,
held back for too long,
upheaval can be unleashed
with seemingly little provocation.
It was all a mystery to me.

Eventually, when sexual abuse
of my niece was suspected,
I sought the help of a hypnotherapist
to uncover the reasons why I wore
my niece’s suffering as if it were
my own, never able to disrobe it.

The jars in the sand were part
of my healing visions in the
meditations that followed
the uncovering of the abuse.

The first memory was being
abused at four. Held down on the floor,
unable to get away, overpowered,
despite not wanting this,
I felt pleasure, some bliss.
I stopped going when memories
were younger than this.

Never would I have believed, even as a PT
that there would be any pleasure found
in being held down and abused so ruthlessly.
A nerve is a nerve, once stimulated it
will send the signals to the brain it is
programmed to send. Pleasure or pain,
to the nerve it senses and sends all the same.

It was with this memory that I knew it
was true. Locked deeply in my unconscious
before I knew what I had lost…dissociation
saved my life and my sanity,
schizophrenia and severe bipolar disorder
my family’s proclivity.

~~~

Sleeping Beauty: Sexual Abuse

Mental Illness

Namaste
__/|\__ Ananda & Metta

2015.01.15

Image

 

Body Image: This Belly

For me, this entire area has been a source of disgrace;
the reveal of my self-consciousness, I must now face.

For so long I held myself back in my power,
not wanting to feel, not wanting to heal,
denying my own unique individuality.

When the more I choose to feel
the pain that seeks comfort,
the more love I can bless,
the less food I need to digest.

These areas the place of
my creativity, conception,
procreation and baby-carrying.
Now, I return to them with loving grace.

In this picture, you can also see my hips.
The top of my pelvis, this place of balance.
The hips carry my body forward, sometimes
to the side and sometimes backwards.

But my desire to run again has waned.
In spite of my reduction in activity,
I still find more and more concavity
in this place, this space
called my belly.

The belly holds the energy of two chakras:
1. The sacral chakra (just below the navel) and the energy of procreation, desires, duality, creativity, emotions. Water is the element: emotions.
2. The solar plexus chakra (just below the breastbone): digestion, power, strength, personal individuality. Fire is the element, think: the sun (hence solar).

Both are involved with intuition, hence the expression listening to “the gut.”

Body Image Series

Namaste
__/|\__ Metta
2016.02.15

 

6/2015: a larger belly, firmer skin… feel like i cannot win sometimes!

The skin of my lower belly sags from weight loss. I protected it from the first view. 

Body Image: Getting Something off my Chest

This is part of an ever expanding series on body image and mirror work.

Had planned to save the breast for last…(sorry, really couldn’t quite hold back)

So alas I find myself being drawn to post the part of my body I have loved the most.

They are my breast assets, in my humble opinion both energetically and physically.

These breasts, they carry the energy of my heart, my love both for my children and others.

Long, easily stimulated pencil eraser tip nips;

The cherries on top of darkened areolas, the peak of mounding soft flesh of DD/DDD proportions, depending on who’s measuring, of course.

More than a mouth or handful for sure.
they can be a source of both pleasure
and contempt for me,

Having preferred for so long to keep them in hiding.

They were something I prized, yet I couldn’t tolerate the hunger I could see them create within a man’s eyes,

with their voluptuous size and ever prominent erect nipples unless hidden, unbidden under excessive padding.

Now as I continue to embrace and have greater compassion for this woman of great fire and passion, I begin to flaunt doing my best to balance the taunt, treading somewhat between doing so cautiously and precariously.

These breasts a pillow for only a handful of fellows, yet the producers of much pleasure and the white gold of a mother. They nourished my children as babies and toddlers, bearing the burden of their nutrition.

These breasts, no longer a source of unbidden suffering finally now for me a wholesome and nutritious source of celebration.

Namaste.
__/|\__ Metta

2016.02.06

Mirror Work with a Twist (TMI Alert)

So last week I embarked on the journey of mirror work. Something I have hated in the past because I prefer perfection and am a romantic idealist. Seeing myself in the mirror means my eyes immediately pin point all of my flaws. Things most others probably do not see. And yes, I see irony in my healing process looking at each aspect of my body as a different part instead of seeing myself as a whole (my end goal). I am more than my body and the sum of my parts.

So the first day of mirror work I chronicled well here. The next day was similar with the use of oil and lovingly applying it to my skin while I gave gratitude to my body.

Day 3, I believe it was (absolutely, it was), I had a bit of an interesting twist, shall we say. TMI Alert: stop reading this if you don’t want to know too much about me.  First some background: since my separation and divorce, I have developed quite a habit of “taking care of my needs” in the morning. Particularly after writing (and reading) here on WP. So, in running behind on my routine, I decided to combine mirror work with “taking care of business,” (TCB). It was fucking amazing!

I’ve always avoided looking in mirrors during sex. Even eye contact was often too much for me, though I truly desire to have a tantric sex experience, it scares the fuck out of me. Unbroken eye contact just sitting across from someone is hard enough, add sex, passion, pleasure and pain to that and I’m looking away; I’m out. Heck, it’s only recently that I could keep my eyes open, even with masturbation.

Ok, so back to the mirror work. It was incredibly erotic and … healing to see myself both receiving pleasure (as the giver) as well as to see myself climax; something I have never seen. I was able to maintain eye contact with my reflection. It was so hot, I couldn’t wait to do it again that night.

I can’t say that I’ve done this everyday, I missed a few days (a fatal mistake) but every time since then TCB has been in front of the mirror. It’s awesome. If you haven’t tried this, I highly recommend it. The next level up for me is going to be in front of the full length mirror and not just the bathroom vanity.

This is such a trifecta. You see, vanity has been such an issue for me as have body and sexual shame. This work has propelled me forward in my work spiritually and personally.

Namaste.

__/|\__ Metta

Image: Google