My radio interview has just come out😊 Take a listen through the link below!
Forgiveness came to me by surprise and when I least expected it. I believe that sitting with and working through the old grief that I had been clutching to, allowed the space within my heart for forgiveness.
Many years ago, my grandfather had phoned me up and expressed his angry opinion to me on how he thought I should handle the abuse I experienced. His words hurt me deeply and I felt betrayed, unsupported and like somehow it was all my fault. It felt like I had been punched in the stomach and my relationship with him changed that day. I could not forgive him until recently after he had passed away. Something in me softened and I realized that this anger I was carrying around with me was only affecting me. What point was it to continue to be angry at him? I felt a sadness arise for all the years I missed out on getting to know him.
On the way to the funeral I listened to The Book of Forgiveness by Desman Tutu and Mpho Tutu for the whole 6 hour drive there. I had made the choice to forgive my grandpa and my heart felt more at peace and my love for him grew. I also knew that the man who abused me would be at the funeral, and what I did not expect or anticipate was the miraculous healing that incurred for me that day.
I walked in and he was the first person I saw. There he was standing before me and I could not avoid his presence. But this time, something was different. I no longer saw a monster looming over me, I saw a human being and man who was also holding pain and suffering. A strength rose up in me along with a shocking decision I made, that it was time to forgive him. Never ever did I believe it would be possible to forgive this man who I hated, and wished pain and torment upon everyday of his life like I endured. But, I forgave him, for myself, to free myself from the suffering and resentment I was carrying around with me. I could see how it affected my life and that was not ok with me anymore. I was ready to let the story go.
From The Book of Forgiveness…
“What Forgiveness is not”
- forgiveness is not easy-it requires hard work and a consistent willingness.
- forgiveness is not weakness-it requires courage and strength.
- forgiveness does not subvert justice-it creates space for justice to be enacted with a purity of purpose that does not include revenge.
- forgiveness is not forgetting-it requires a fearless remembering of hurt.
- forgiveness is not quick-it can take several journeys through the cycles of remembering and grief before one can truly forgive and be free.
And now to release all aspects of the abuse and free the pain and suffering that was hunkered deep down inside me, I turn to forgiveness for myself. I intentionally and unintentionally inflicted abuse, neglect, criticism, and suffering upon myself. I did not believe I was good enough, worthy or loveable and I hated myself. I forgive myself for these false perceptions and behaviours. It has been holding me back in trusting myself, living life and experiencing more joy!
Someone recently shared with me on what forgiveness meant to him and it resonates deeply with me now. He said “forgiveness is forgiving without forgetting” and “forgiveness was the path to his heart where he lived.”
What does forgiveness mean to me…
FORGIVENESS IS THE PATH TO MY HEART WHERE LYNNDEL LIVES.
I have worked through various degrees and stages of grief and loss over the last couple of years, and I felt like I had completely made it through to the other side. Well, at least that’s what my denial would have had me believe. I was done, not dealing with any more grief, and it was time to move on. Yet, there was still a niggling of something tugging at me under the surface, like an elastic band pulling me back every time I tried to run forward. Denial…. I was not in grief nor did I have anything more I needed to look at. Yes, I could just keep convincing myself into true joy, not that I do not feel joy, but that I had to try sometimes way too hard to cover the sadness and loneliness that would creep in. I both felt joy, and it seemed like a foreign emotion to me at the same time. This grief that I was stuffing deep down and avoiding was prohibiting joy from emerging and the embodiment of it.
This old grief which I had already once visited was held by a small frail part of me that did not and could not understand why, why this was happening to her. She held a grief and sense of loss of a childhood like all the happy kids were having. She thought she was alone, different than everyone else, and was being punished but didn’t know why. She lived in fear and was always looking for places to hide, where she could be safe. She felt so much shame and disgust with herself.
I sat down with her and the grief again, but this time I was able to listen. The last time we spoke all I could do for her was place her in a safe place free from hiding and living in fear. But, I also left her alone in this place with the responsibility of holding all the grief. She was burdened by a weighted sac upon her tiny shoulders of should of, could haves, if only, and would haves. The one holding the sac together read “I should have been allowed to be a child.” I had been angry and resentful and there was no understanding, no clarity for the whys.
If only I would have told, I should have made someone understand me, I should have said no, I should have ran away, I could have yelled and screamed and fought back, I would have not felt different than all the other kids, I wouldn’t have had to endure all this pain throughout my life, I could have been successful instead of hiding from the world, if only I wouldn’t have let this effect me……. If only… I should have….why….
I grieved the loss of innocence, childlike curiosity, of joy, and passion as I believed for so long that it was taken away from me. But this time as I sat down face to face with this grief, we both held a new perspective and transformation was ready to take place. I looked into this child’s pleading eyes and allowed this grief to wash over me. She was ready to let this pain go, she did not want to carry the weight anymore, and just wanted to run and play in this meadow with the other children now waiting for her. I understood also that I never lost anything; nothing was ever taken from me. I have experienced the innocence, childlike curiosity, joy, and passion being sparked inside of me lately, and recognize now that it has always been there. I understand and remember who I have always been. The experience is a memory and I can now look past that, deeper into the essence of me. I don’t just see, I feel my beauty. It doesn’t matter if we are dressed in our fanciest clothes, or rolling around in the mud covered from head to toe, underneath we are still the same person. All I used to see when I looked in the mirror was the filth.
I felt this pain and then we let it go. Together on the soft grassy earth we opened the dusty old sac and blue butterflies emerged. The should haves transformed and took flight and is opening me into a newer sensation of joy with a childlike curiosity exploring this fragrant meadow with new eyes.
As this process unfolded my body has also been expressing this release. I sat down by a waterfall and let my tears be washed away. It started with a burning in my lungs and I found it hard to breathe deeply, (this lasted close to a week). Within hours of giving the grief permission to leave, my body began to ache as the energy of the grief stored in my tissues released. It was an evening of almost unbearable but necessary cleansing. I felt incredibly uncomfortable in my own skin, and it was almost too much to even drink water. The next day the headache started and a heavy pressure and fog in the middle of my brain set it. My mood and thought pattern changed and a deep dark depression settled in. I dove head first into the depths of it and by the 3rd day I pulled the covers over my head and spent most of the day in bed. Then I began to pull myself together again, and I recognize the pattern of how I have dealt with grief. I shut down and pulled the sensations deeper into my body, I hid from the world. I also understand that when I start feeling unlike myself, along with the pain in my head that my sphenoid had shifted. Within an hour of having someone work on it, I felt the shift back to myself and the fog lift.
Now I’m not really sure how the grief and releasing of it connects in with my sphenoid, but I am reminded once again of the effects and impact on the body of holding and denying emotions. Perhaps releasing the grief allowed next for the depression to be set free. I have become less concerned with figuring out with my brain why something is happening to me, and instead listen more closely to what my body has to tell me. My process has become much less traumatic and I flow quicker and easier through whatever arises. When I feel the resistance, the hesitation, my mind racing with fear, the knot in my stomach, I know it is time to stop, get really quiet and listen.
I am it all.
I am the early morning glistening dew drop
the raging river rushing to the sea
and the vastness of the ocean herself.
I am the flutter of the hummingbird's wing
and the breeze created from its flap.
I am the warmth felt from the sun's ray caressing your cheek
and I am the burning fire ball that is the sun.
The thunder that shakes the silent air is me
and I am the stillness found in between each rumble.
I am hatred that you could not fathom would exist
the shock of the cruelty that one could inflict upon themselves,
starvation, beatings, cutting, poisoning,
Such severe punishment I sentenced myself with.
I am also the love, compassion, and forgiveness
who opened the cage and empowered this dove to fly again,
who set her free soaring through infinite blue skies.
I am the support, nourishment, and acceptance
it took to repair the damage that occurred in this imprisonment.
I am the secrets once held so close
I am the rage,
the blood curdling screams that freed them from the depths of my hell.
I am death
death of beliefs, perceptions, and of my victimization.
I am the violent storm and the rebirth of life it brought,
life flowing to, in, and around me,
life loving me, me loving life back
a participant, a co-creator with unlimited potential,
a believer in myself.
A remembrance and an understanding to the collection of it all,
the all that I am.
A deeper layer of my pain body has come to visit me yet again yesterday.
Part of my journey has been to learn how to exercise again, and not have this healthy stimulation elicit a trauma response. Roughly 5 years ago I came to the decision to finally listen to the pain in my body and I took a break from all strenuous activities. I had gotten to the point that I would cry myself to sleep at night and wake up in tears from the pain and burning sensations that I felt in my body. I was so stiff that it would sometimes take my breath away to even move. The simplest activities like house work or lifting a water bottle onto the water cooler was too much most days. The only exercise that I did for a couple of years was to just walk. Walking felt good and it helped lift my mood.
My emotional pain was locked underneath all of the physical injuries and traumas that my body had endured. I was in a constant trauma state and so physical healing was not occurring. My body was in a serious crisis. I had also become intolerant to a lot of things in the world around me. The pain and inflammation in my body was being exacerbated from my reactions to the food I was eating, the environment around me, and the energies of others that were constantly bombarding me. I had very little filter or boundaries to the world around me. I did not understand yet that I had the power to say no to what entered into my space.
I completely changed my diet, no gluten, dairy, corn, soy or nightshades for a couple of years. I still mostly eat like this today but not as strict as I once was. I did many alternative therapies to bring my body back into balance emotionally, energetically, and physically. I just kept trying one thing after the other, inching closer and closer to wholeness. Don’t get me wrong, sometimes I had thought that I had jumped off the cliff into a deep dark abyss that I would never come back from! There were times when it took a month to get myself back from the trembling psychotic state that I felt like I was in. There just was no other option to me other than to just keep going.
Next I began to incorporate yoga into my life. I kept my practice to a gentle meditative form of yoga, and my body cautiously began to open and unravel. Some classes I still pushed myself too hard and I have since learned how to find that place of stillness in each posture, and not push myself into pain which was one of my patterns. A few years ago my body was feeling better so I wanted to start working out again and building back up my strength and endurance. I found again that I had to stop. I discovered that when my heart rate would be elevated, the next day I would feel like I had been run over by a bus even though I was very careful and gentle. I would feel so stiff, sore and utterly fatigued. I had hardly done anything! The emotions of frustration, depression, and worthlessness would appear as well. My mood would plummet. My nervous system interpreted all sensations as danger! I would sometimes feel like I had reverted back to a child.
I continued to work with many different type of therapists, and I learned how to be more grounded and present in my body with healthy boundaries. My nervous system began to recognize pleasant, safe healthy stimulation from that which would harm me. I began to feel safer in the world. I unwrapped layer by layer of pain until I got to the core of my trauma symptoms buried deep in my pelvis. A big shift occurred and when I tried again to exercise about a year ago, I was ecstatic at the difference I felt. For the first time that I can remember, I felt so energized and alive. My muscles felt awesome and strong. This is what you are supposed to feel like after you exercise, I proclaimed in joy!! I honor and respect where my body is and I know when to stop and what my limits are. I am still strengthening and repair old injuries. There is such a freedom that comes with movement and I am opening into it at my body’s pace.
In January I also noticed that another shift had occurred in my energy field, and I was no longer living in a post traumatic stress disorder state. I have begun to really feel at home in my body and not as easily attach to the sensations or emotions that I am feeling as being who I am. This brings me to yesterday and something that I have been observing in my body during yoga for the past couple of weeks. I have noticed that my quad muscles are becoming unhappy and if I hold a asana a little too long and I become nauseous for a couple of hours afterwards. It’s like a deep trauma memory stored in the cells is being stirred up as I work to strengthen them, and they are fighting back. On Monday I tried a new class at the gym which was too intense for me at the time. Yesterday I felted the old sensations flood back into me like I had been in the fight of my life. The pain, fatigue, anger, hating my body, why the hell is this happening again?!
It took me the day to work through what my body was speaking to me and I’m still sitting with it, but I woke up this morning in a peaceful place. My body is still sore but that is ok. I had to come to accept that is was needed for me to sleep in the afternoon for an hour, and I didn’t need to feel guilty or weak about it. These sensations I was feeling where not typical for me anymore so I took the time to sit down and listen to my body. I stopped judging it, blaming it and found the place in myself again where the week before I held such gratitude and love for my body. I recognized that part of the reason I am so careful and put limits on what I do is because I am still in fear of feeling that physical pain in my body again. I was partially associating that pain to who I was as that was my identity for so long. It was like neon lights flashing from every cell of my being… Pain, pain, pain. I am Pain!
I changed my question to my body from why why why…(because in asking, I was just yelling at it and not waiting for a response anyways) to what do you need from me? I learned a few things that I was not being truthful to myself about. My body needs more water and I need to tweak my diet again as I am showing signs of being too acidic. I acknowledge and understand that I need more rest right now. I have been telling myself that there should be no reason why I don’t have more energy, I need to be doing more, getting on with my life ect. but in reality, these last 4 months have been the first time I have allowed myself to just be. I have been able to release many deeply held tears and have been riding wave after wave of emotions as I make space for what I am going to create next. I am right where I did to be right now. I need to ease up on the demands I have for myself.
I had to bring myself back to remember again in a time of great physical pain, that I am not my pain. I release my grip that I have so tightly held on pain. I am able to move once again in this knowledge.
I drew this card yesterday morning and it was the hardest thing for me to do with how I was feeling; today I understand.
I have come to love, appreciate and hold gratitude for my body in a whole new way this week. I am able to recognize my wholeness and see my pain body for what it is, a messenger to me. My body is not my enemy, trying to punish me, or make me suffer. It is not broken or damaged and I am not the pain. The pain, stories, and beliefs are shown to me through my pain body but I am not them. I am able to witness the pain and my wholeness together.
For years I had a unhealthy relationship, a disconnection to my body. I did not want to be in it, I despised it for the pain I felt, I blamed it for failing me. I wanted out of my body, to escape the prison of limitation I felt I was confined to. I intentionally inflicted pain upon it, to punish it – to punish me. I starved my body, tried to drown the pain with drugs and alcohol, and end its very existence. I experienced one injury and trauma after another, and I pushed my body to the point of exhaustion. In spite of it all, it still held on for me! In recognition of this in the last few years, I have held a deep sorrow and guilt for what I had done to myself. Some things intentional, some unconsciously. I was so mean to myself.
I have been playing this week with my pain body, changing again my perception and understanding of it. I recognize now my partnership to my body. I am able to hold the pain body and discomforts that I still feel out from me at distance, acknowledging that it is part of me, but not defining me. I have gathered a great appreciation for what my body does for me and am in awe at the level of reconstruction, repairing, and rebuilding that it has does for me despite that stress I put upon it.
I have come to feel a sense of peace and stillness within my heart and feel at home there, but something still felt like it was missing. Through a guided meditation I became witness to my Divine Body Blueprint. I watched from the moment of conception as my body was created into a perfect divine being. I could see and feel everything as it formed and moved with everything functioning in perfect divine form and alive with energy. I reactivated this original blueprint of the body within me again, remembering the connection and partnership between my body and soul. I then came to feel at home in my body once again, understanding wholeness.
We were then to ask our body what it needed from us, our soul, our consciousness to support it and how would that feel to have it expressed in the body. My body asked that I have forgiveness for myself for the guilt I felt for not treating myself with love, compassion and dishonoring myself. It would be expressed in my body as ease, lightness and a great joy that brought so much energy to me. Forgiveness would set me free.
The key to unlocking this blueprint is gratitude, gratitude for the body! We are to honor the body daily with this sensation, remembering this blueprint and activating it again and again.
It feels so good to me to have this partnership with my body, to be at home in my body. Thank you body for being my partner, I love you body!
Saying goodbye to honor me,
Stepping into my Truth with power and softness.
Silently at first I walk,
my head held high
My wings outstretched and glistening
rediscovering their freedom.
A sensation stirs in my womb
aching to dance.
Re-birthed with compassion
and alive through passion
A ferocious gentleness emerges.
In this silky radiance love bursts forth
I begin to open again and prepare to celebrate my victory,
recognizing my worth,
A stabbing pain plunges through my heart
The victim sulking inside rises up with brute force
screaming relentlessly in sorrow
Why did you do this to us?
Why did you take away our happiness?
I rocked the boat and the anchor of grief tied to my heart,
began to sink me into the depths of a dark sea of victim mentality.
Poor me, all alone
blaming this and that,
everyone and everything else,
Taking no responsibility
I CAN’T DO THIS AGAIN.
This power sucking, energy draining, narrow perception.
The voices continue to scream in breath crushing sobs
What is wrong with me?
Rejected again – not good enough – want to die – no reason for my existence.
A tug of war between my truth,
and this ego driven worthless attitude.
I recognize this pattern, I STOP.
Reasoning with this part of me and arguing with her does not work.
I did NOT want to admit that she still existed with all the healing I have done,
and yet here she was.
A little girl standing before me
questioning why it took so long for me to recognize that she mattered?
feeling more space open around me
listening without judgement,
I witnessed her,
I gathered all our pain and allowed it to wash through me.
Then rooted in my strength
I open again into loving myself unconditionally
Celebrating the victory I have come to embody
My existence matters,