They are the age-old questions: Who am I? What is my purpose? I do not have enough space on this blog post to go into such philosophical depths, but seeing as you are on my site and reading this opening paragraph, I feel I should do the courtesy of introducing myself and telling my story; or at least the version that brings us here today.
Growing up, I was a really shy, timid, little girl who was afraid of so many things, not least of which was a paralyzing fear of judgment, criticism and rejection. These deeply embedded fears shaped my entire reality and caused me to lock myself down with self-imposed limitations, preventing me from reaching my full potential. For years, my primary motivation was to avoid judgment. I walked through life tip-toeing; moving through my world like a ghost, afraid of being seen and afraid of being heard. The result was a lot of repressed emotion, a very low sense of self-worth and a complete loss of self-expression.
But what would cause such a reaction? Surely only a truly traumatic event could cause such a pronounced behavioral choice in a young girl. The funny thing is, from an adult perspective, the catalytic event might not be perceived as traumatic at all; but to an 8-year-old? Death! Complete Mortification! Allow me to grant you an example:
It’s fall of 1988; I am 8-years-old. My third-grade class has been separated into its various-leveled reading groups to work on their assignments. My group is reading an Ashanti folktale about a mischievous spider. I have never seen the word ‘spider’ spelled out, yet I am called upon to read aloud. I get to this word and I pronounce it ‘spitter’ instead of ‘spider’.
Do you know the tension in a room full of 8-year-olds, trembling with potential energy? Desperate for a diversion so that they can, if just for a moment, look away from their less-than-engaging reading samples, jump out of their seats, make some noise and shake out their bodies before returning to their work? Well, not only was my verbal slip the catalyst for such an eruption, but it was heightened by laughing, jeering and mumbled remarks about my intellectual prowess.
Trivial event, right? But in those 30 seconds of complete humiliation, the belief system of that 8-year-old girl was shaped such that it would dictate her social behavior from that moment forward. In that micro-moment, I made some major emotional decisions that would continue to run my life through to adulthood:
- I am not smart enough.
- I am not good with words.
- If I open my mouth, people will laugh at me.
- It is safer not to be heard.
Those are just a smattering, but can you see how such beliefs might influence my behavior, my career path, my choice of friends and my choice of lovers? And that’s just a single 30-second memory. I have over three decades’ worth of 30-second memories running around inside my mind, all complete with their own list of emotional decisions!
Over time, my fears started to manifest themselves in my physical body. Around the age of 17, I started to develop the oft debilitating symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome, a somewhat ambiguous diagnosis of an inflammatory gut disorder. I spent so many years swallowing my emotions and my voice, often sacrificing my own needs to avoid confrontation, that I literally made myself sick; I could not stomach my life. Attached to these intestinal problems were myriad other symptoms, such as joint pain, skin eruptions, thinning hair, dry scalp, depression, anxiety, horribly low self-esteem and a generally cynical perception of the world.
Did you notice in the second paragraph that I used the phrase behavioral choice? I have come to realize that everything that occurs in my life is my choice, whether decided by my conscious mind or my subconscious mind. This awareness is a game changer! It has allowed me to stop finding blame in external factors and to realize that I have full command over my thoughts, my feelings, my perceptions, my decisions and my actions; that if I am unhappy in my circumstances, I can decide to change them.
After 20 years of suffering with my physical ailments, along with the insidious effects of buried emotional wounds, I am currently at a place where I feel truly happy, healthy, light, free of fear and free of anxiety. Through a combination of movement, emotional release, nutrition and spiritual practice, along with some self-discipline and a deep desire to change my life, I was able to completely transform how I feel, the state of my health, the way I perceive the world and the way others perceive me.
I created BE Light Transformative Therapy as a way to reach other people who have spent years suffering in countless ways; to remind them that both the body and the mind have a powerful capacity to heal. I hope to be a conduit through which others might realize their potential for transformation and their ability, in any moment they choose, to change their lives for the better.
Beyond the narcissistic indulgence of writing about myself for a page and a half for all the world to read, what is my point?
The process of self-improvement is a never-ending one. I believe it is also a unifying desire towards which all humans thrive. I only quite recently had this amazingly transformative experience, and I know that the process will only continue. While I hope to share everything I have learned up to this point, I know that every person out there has their own version of my story, along with invaluable lessons from which all of us can benefit. I want BE Light to be a community; a supportive, inspirational, educational experience, where people can safely share their struggles, as well as the positive transformations they have had and hope to have.
So, who am I?
In the context of BE Light, I am a dedicated and compassionate therapist who wants to assist in your transformation in every way possible. I am a fellow human being who understands the quest for self-improvement and who is ready to support you on this often challenging journey. I am a guide, helping to bring awareness to areas of your body and your life where there was none before. I am a mirror, reflecting possibilities for your life that you were never before able to see.
Who are YOU?
Tell me your stories! Are you starting to understand your perception of love after being raised in an abusive household? Are you reclaiming your self-worth after tirelessly allowing it to be stepped on by others? Are you realizing that just because someone called you stupid at age 8, it does not mean that you actually are?
I would love to hear from people who have overcome everything from small challenges to extreme strife. Please comment below to share pieces of your transformative journey and let us all learn from them and be inspired.
Have topics you would like to see me blog about? Tell me about them! Please comment below or use my contact page to send me a message.