We’re definitely in Autumn & I wanted to write a blog asking you to reflect on what you’ve learned these past few months, what story it’s time to let go of & what seeds you’d like to plant for Spring. However; after sitting in front of my screen for ages I find that the words just won’t come.
There are several reasons.
A couple of years I wrote 2 blogs about these subjects & I’m not sure I could better them, all I’d be doing is reflecting on what’s changed in the interim & I seem to be doing that too frequently. (Links to the blogs are below)
But more than that there are several things going on which mean my mind is elsewhere.
Changing a story
If I were to pick up any of the 26 journals I’ve filled over the years there would be one belief which appeared in all of them. It’s one I’ve held for a long, long time & it’s holding me back in a number of ways. As it’s the season of letting go I’ve told myself that it’s time & reminded myself (to use Brené Brown’s wise words) that ‘it’s just a story I’m telling myself’ & I can change it.
I’ve been meditating, journaling, asking myself questions, going through notes & books & using various tips & techniques I’ve learned over the years. And of course there’s no substitute for action so I’ve also put in place some new habits to support the change.
I’ve had a couple of breakthroughs & been down some blind alleys, & this time I’m determined.
I keep assuring myself of the wisdom in my previous blog that it’s only once we let something go that we can make space for something new to enter. And if that fails I remind myself, (sometimes very loudly) that ‘it’s just a story.’
Some of the questions have brought the younger Lesley to the fore to heal & I’m reminded of this beautiful poem I heard on a retreat as it describes what I’m doing. Always of course being gentle & nurturing.
Doing what I really love
These past few months I’ve taken advantage of being able to do things online & attended various workshops & training courses. After I finished the last one, I had a few days of overwhelm & paralysis, not knowing what to do next. There were so many possible options, many areas I was curious about & I wasn’t sure which to choose. Then these words by Rumi popped into my head.
They felt like an instruction from the Universe which I had to follow. The overwhelm disappeared & I realised that I really want to learn more about particular areas of Traditional Chinese Medicine & Acupressure. So in between my introspection I’m reading & studying & realising how much I can use what I’m learning to support my personal work.
I hesitate to share this, my next embroidery project with you. It’s called ‘Allotment: a Bird’s Eye View’ & I was drawn to it as it reminds me of the area where my Dad had his allotment. As a child we lived in a terraced house with no garden & growing both flowers & veg gave him a lot of pleasure.
I love the detail & it’s by far the most complex & challenging project I’ve undertaken, with new stitches to learn. It’s going to take many hours of determined & patient effort.
What are the gifts?
There are always gifts which emerge from everything we’ve been through & they can be hard to see when you’re in the middle of everything. At one point all I could see was how hard it would be to change my story, then once I could see the gifts everything changed.
I’m also struck by the similarity of these 3 activities. Patience & I are not the best of friends on a good day but I am determined & persistent. I think I’m going to need all of these over the coming months.
And I’m reminded that one step at a time has taken me a long way so that’s what I’ll continue, taking breaks when I feel like it & always acting from a place of love.
Now it’s your turn
- Please take a couple of moments, read my words again & ask yourself where you see yourself in the stories I’ve shared with you.
- What story have you been telling yourself which you now know it’s time to let go of? (Maybe that you can’t be happy without children)
- And what gifts could come to you once you’ve let the story go?
- What vision does Parvana’s poem bring up for you?
- From Rumi’s words, what’s do you really love (& what are you going to do about it)?
- And if you sit quietly, what’s pulling at your soul?
And if you’d like to share any of your answers please do so below (you don’t have to use your real name).
Here’s my previous blog ‘what could happen if you let go?’ In it you will read,
- why letting go is A GOOD THING,
- a very clever reframe (not by me I hasten to add),
- a bonus video,
- why you don’t have to let go (yes I understand how illogical that seems & you’ll have to read it to find out more),
- I also explain how the 2 other lessons from nature, harvesting & planting really support me especially at this time of year.
And one on ‘The surprising benefits of acceptance’ in which I write about why acceptance doesn’t mean forever but is about accepting this moment & there’s another Rumi poem! It seems to me that acceptance is particularly relevant this year.
You can download Chapter One of Finding Joy Beyond Childlessness when you sign up to my email list.