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With Open Arms

Art journal page in progress.

It is part of being human to question our lives, evaluating how far we have come, what we have accomplished, and where it is we hope to go. It is part of the joy – and the struggle – of possessing the unique gift of awareness of our Selves. We analyze our past and dream of the future, looking for answers about our impact on this world: have we made a difference at all? Whose lives, for better or worse, have we touched? How have we grown, changed, failed, and succeeded in the time that we have spent on this earth thus far?

I realized recently that most of my life, instead of having been focused on dreams, higher education, friends, and my future, was occupied with questions of survival: "How can I survive this unhealthy environment? Will I ever find relief from these demons of self hatred and depression? Will I ever be able to live a normal life?" (Read my story here.)

Now, in my twenty fourth year, having at long last reached out for help and begun the long journey to healing, I know the answers to those questions: I have survived, courageously. I have learned to be gentle, loving, and patient with my Self. I am whole, and I am and will continue to walk a journey of healing. I am not defined by my past.

Knowing these truths, I at long last have the chance to explore the questions that had for so many years fallen to the wayside: what do I want to do? What can I give to the world? What are the things that I most want for myself? What big dreams do I have?

And frankly, my loves, I am at a loss.

But everything new and unknown is difficult. Knowing that the rewards of finding these answers will point the way to a full, happy life, I will continue to ask myself big questions, searching for answers that make my heart sing. And so I continue on this adventure deep within to (re)discover my passions, my joys, and my dreams.

Dear readers, do you struggle with knowing who you are? What are your biggest heart dreams? I would love to hear from you!

All my love,

4 comments:

  1. Ah - so beautiful!! I just want to reach out and hug you - this is such a delicate and IMPORTANT part of the journey. (The cyclical journey - these parts come up again and again.) I can only encourage you to sit with what is, knowing what you now know and knowing that there is so much more to know...that can never be fully known.

    I celebrate with you!!

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  2. I have not pondered these questions, either. Not because I went through having to deal with the fight for survival, but because I am not an introspective person. Oh, how I wish to change that. I flutter from activity to activity (sleep, work, read, read/write blogs, play video games, even ART JOURNALING) blind, with my heart turned off and I do everything like a robot with no thoughts within. I am on this same journey with you. Even though I am here for a different reason, the intention of the journey is the same: self discovery.

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  3. funny i read this today, because most of my therapy session was devoted to this. AND IT SCARES THE EVER-LOVIN' SH*T out of me. UGH. I don't think I've ever had a dream for myself. I remember my senior year in HS (I am 31 now), flipping out about going to college, and being n the Real World after. Whenever I pictured myself as an adult, I would picture nothing. This is still true to this day. My future? It looks like an empty canvas of white, with me aimlessly floating about, not even anchored to the ground.

    This image has been with me for years, and I don't even know how to begin fixing it. So, YES, i understand and feel your pain. I know part of it is the fear of the unknown. It is scary as hell, what if you fail, fall flat on yoru face? Lose all your money? (if you even have any...i don't!), Are homeless? There are so many possibilities. Taking risks is so scary, and even if my life is not filled with happiness now, I find it much more comforting than trying ot imagine a future.

    Hmmm. So depressing. Yeah,s o I have no idea who I am, not sure I ever knew. Not sure I ever will, either. You are already on a much better and healthier path, and I know that you ar eheading in the right direction.

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  4. Ingrid, your art is Beautiful. I just nominated you for the LIEBSTER AWARD! Go check out the details here --> http://bit.ly/NEFxXU

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