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Reflect Out Loud

"The unexamined life is not worth living." – Socrates

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self-esteem

Corporal Punishment

“Experience life in all possible ways —
good-bad, bitter-sweet, dark-light,
summer-winter. Experience all the dualities. 
Don’t be afraid of experience, because the more experience you have, the more mature you become.” -Osho

I was beaten as a child. Threatened.
“I’ll throw you across the walls and step on your neck,” my mom would say.

I was beaten by my grandmother too. I never liked her. She was mean to me.

I also have a vivid memory of when I was beaten by my uncle. I guess I deserved it that time because he was beating me for getting into it with a girl at school.

I was beaten by my sister. I remember having a black and blue eye from the silver latch of the belt she was using. I must have been 5 years old. 6 at most. Because all of this happened in Brazil while I was growing up.Then we moved to the U.S. I was still beaten by my mom occasionally, but less so.

I don’t condone what they did, but I also don’t blame them. It is common in Brazil to beat your kids. This was their level of consciousness. This is how they grew up, this is what they thought was right.

I don’t agree with this kind of treatment. I was a child. And I don’t think any human child deserves to be beaten.

 

(My eyes get a little watery when I revisit these memories for too long)

I would wish I was born to a different family. Especially the nice ones I would see in movies.

I wonder what the correlation is between my getting beaten and my struggles with self worth, self-esteem are?

I don’t usually go back to the past and think about these things. I don’t even hold a grudge in my heart or blame my family for doing what they knew in their level of consciousness to be right at the time.

I just wanted to share this part of my story with you.

I didn’t grow up in the best neighborhood. Not the worst either – but certainly could have been better.
I have some memories of being picked on at school. Pushed. Bullied.
But that didn’t last very long.

The quality of my school improved when I went to High School. Though there were still some kids to be afraid of there.

I tried my best to navigate my life with what I had. And surprisingly ended up the way I am – with a heart full of love and forgiveness.

I don’t hold on to the bad that happens to me. At least not for long anyway.

The negative experiences affect me, of course. Challenge me. Fuck me up a little.
But I do everything I can to transcend them.

I want to leave a better world behind. I want to be the best me despite the hardships.

I’ve experienced some pretty difficult situations in my life. Many in my childhood that I never knew how to process and didn’t have the most educated family to support or guide me.

I accept my family though. I accept where I came from. I appreciate who I’ve become.

Of course if I had a choice to have had a more wholesome upbringing I would choose that in a heartbeat – but what’s the point on dwelling on that? I rather let go of the past and be grateful for who I’ve become despite my difficulties. I rather be thankful for this really amazing life I am fortunate to be experiencing and creating now as an adult in this world.

Sometimes I think I harbor some negative energy – and I think it may still be from the past experiences that have shaped me in who I currently am.

I’m actively working to transform that every day, though.

I really and truly believe in a beautiful world filled with beautiful people living wholesome lives. This is the world that I want to create for myself. This is the world I want to contribute towards creating.

I am a huge advocate of peace, love, forgiveness, compassion and all things good.

I want to transcend my limitations. I want to transcend the lodged fears that make me feel like I’m somehow not enough, not worthy or stupid.

I don’t experience this all the time. But I experience it sometimes.

And I just wanted you to know.

 

Also, don’t feel bad for me. That’s not why I wrote this. I just want you to know me more.

 

Don’t think my story was all grim. There was so much laughter and so much good!

 

This is just a little bit of my darker days and simply a part of the story that shaped me as a whole.

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Intimacy

I thought I wanted a relationship, but then the thought of being with one person and losing my freedom doesn’t so much appeal to me. More the latter than the former.

I guess it’s not a relationship that I’m sensing some resistance to but more so a traditional, standard relationship, as most people would understand a relationship to have to be.

Traditional relationships come with rules. Do’s and don’ts.
(Like no texting or talking to other people)

I don’t wanna feel like I answer to anyone. Like there’s some shadow figure watching me and I need to now change how I behave simply because we decided to spend more time together.

Those are just some of the factors that turn me off about traditional relationships.

I would definitely need to amend some of the standard ways of relating in order to feel truly happy. 

Moreover, I seem to have an issue with really getting comfortable with someone.

Let them see me. 
Truly.
Farts and all.

How do I get comfortable enough that I could be myself and truly feel okay?

I slept over a guy’s house the other evening and there was a point in time where I had to fart. I didn’t let it out. That’d be embarrassing. Terrible. How dare I be human?

So what am I gonna do? Hold in my farts forever?

What about when I get a pimple on my face? 
You’d see it.
Or how long it takes for me to blow dry my hair.
You’d know it.

Intimacy…

How does one become comfortable with another?

How does one become okay with being themselves in front of another?

I feel like I should be able to answer this.
I was married for 5 years.

And I don’t remember having an issue with intimacy back then.

The issue I did have, however, is that I couldn’t be faithful. Which goes back to how I originally started this post – with not being sure I could be with only one person and that I need my freedom.

Maybe I’m poly.

But not in the sense that I just want to sleep with a bunch of people. I feel like a lot of people mistake poly for  like a big orgy party or something. I’d recommend they watch Conor & Brittany on YouTube. 

I mean poly in the sense that I am open. I don’t want to stop living and experiencing simply because I am now relating with someone often. 
I want the door to always remain open for whatever happens. This would be a mutual understanding.

I still have to workout some of this confusion as I go, experience, learn and grow.

I primarily want to grow comfortable enough in my skin and with someone where I feel like I can fart and pop a pimple and still be loved. And secondly, be free as a bird and still be loved. All while giving that same kind of love back. A loving, reciprocal and symbiotic relationship that isn’t suffocated by rules.

Yeah… something like that.

Changes

It amazes me how quickly things can change.
How a moment ago we were laughing and holding each other only to never speak again. Would it have felt different if I knew it’d be the last time I’d see you?

I am having a hard time coping with parts of my life’s unfolding. My aging face. My thinning hair. My changing body. My desire to be somewhere further along.
I’m having a hard time with loss. Loss of identity. Loss of youth. Loss of health. Loss of people. Loss of possessions. Loss of status.

I know there is only so much I can do externally to keep it all together. I know that I have to learn to gracefully accept what I cannot change and stop resisting what I can’t control. But it sucks. Damn, does it suck. Why can’t things just work and be my way? Why does it have to be so difficult?

Part of my struggle is internal. Because I cannot sit comfortably with the way things are. Because I tell myself a negative story about my external situation and assign a negative meaning to what is happening to me.

I know that if I want to experience lasting inner peace and satisfaction I have to commit to being kind to myself. I must commit to seeing myself as beautiful, worthy, enough, complete, deserving, lovable and ultimately safe regardless of my external situation.

I’ve started to do EFT – an acupressure form of therapy that helps heal emotional wounds created by excessive patterns of negative thinking. I like to watch and follow along to Brad Yate’s videos. I’ll share a link here.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v6Ua7T01cdY

I am also working to exercise some faith. Faith that even though things may not be completely the way I want them to be right now, that in time, they will be.
Work in progress.
 

 

Latest Meditations

Meditations:

-You are the one with the answers to your deepest questions. Although you may search for the perspective of others, which can broaden your own, ultimately it is all up to you to decide what is truly best for your path.

-Worrying about the opinions of others makes you insecure and afraid to just stand in your own light. Let it go. Stop worrying about others. Your job is not to make anyone approve of you – your job is to just be and approve of yourself.

-People can’t read your mind. If you want something, say something.

-You have to take action to see results. You can’t just wait around and expect that your dreams will magically fall from the sky. If you want to change something you have to actually take the steps necessary to bring that change into effect. If there is nothing you can do at this very moment, you rest; if there is something you can do at this moment, you do it.

-Complaining drains your energy and doesn’t solve anything. If there is a problem you’re concerned with, focus on the solution. Go straight to the source and express your concerns for the sake of moving forward in a healthy way. Stop wasting energy and time saying the same thing over and over like a broken record.

-Not everyone will like, understand, or accept you. That’s okay. Focus on the people who do. And even if there is no one you can fully count on – count on yourself. You are never alone when you have yourself.

-Be courageous and stand for what you believe in in healthy ways. Kindly and firmly up for yourself. Take actions that will leverage you forward even when they feel scary. Once you begin to move forward you’ll see it’s not so scary – every step will be revealed to you as you move.

-Be patient. Not everything happens instantaneously. Sometimes you have to take one step – wait – one step – wait – one step – wait. Some things are a process. Some things transform faster than others while others may take quite a while. The important thing is that you remain consistent in your part and let the rest fall into place in time.

-Be consistent! You can’t achieve anything great if you do it one day and give up for 5 days. Keep the process. A bucket will eventually overflow when the drips of water are consistent over time.

-Most importantly BE PRESENT. You will miss your whole life if you are running around in your head trying to figure it all out. Be here now. Enjoy this moment. The breeze. The lights. The tastes of food. Whatever it is for you – just experience it. This doesn’t mean “don’t think or analyze at all.” There is a time for everything. There’s a time to think and analyze and figure things out. Thinking steals your life when it’s the only thing you do. Experience your life – don’t be lost in your mind.

-When you feel anxiety breathing deeply really helps. Just focus on your breath and not on anxious thoughts or feelings. Breathe in. Breathe out. Breathe in. Breathe out. Remind yourself that everything is temporary and that this will pass. Breathe in. Breathe out. Breathe in. Breathe out. This will pass.

-You don’t have to try to fit in with others when you know you are clearly different. Be who you are and inspire others. It’s okay to be quirky. It’s okay to be you. There’s enough space for every being. There’s enough space for you to shine. Intelligence conspired together to make the atoms that compose your being. Intelligence inherently knows that your unique expression is needed. You are needed. Be who you are even if it’s different from others. Different is okay. No two atoms are the same. That’s what we need. You.

Mama’s Words

Don’t be afraid to be you, my child.
Don’t be scared of failing. You just try again, that’s all. It’s just practice.

Don’t be afraid to speak your mind, my little angel. Your opinions matter too. Don’t worry if some others don’t like your style in music, or your hair, or your moods – find those who do – be with them.

Don’t be consumed if some don’t like you – you’re not here to please them. There’s a war in them – it’s not about you. Keep on smiling that beautiful smile irrespective of those who hold hate in their hearts. Smile for you.

It’s okay to be confused, my darling. Life doesn’t come with a map – and even if it did who’s to say you’d want to follow it. Take your time. Be easy on yourself. Forgive yourself. It’s okay not to have all the answers.

If you feel lonely, my sweetheart, know that it comes and goes. Sometimes we get lonely in this big ol’ world. It’s only temporary. Have faith it’ll pass. Give yourself a big hug and know that you still have yourself with you.

Go on now. Go on and be you. No apologies. No reservations.

THE PROCESS OF BECOMING

Who are you?
Answer: ___________________________

You might answer this question by telling me your name. Your age, cultural background, your social security number, and yada, yada, yada.

But see – that’s not really who you are. That’s information you have acquired from what the external world has determined for you.
You are the awareness of these things.
You are not your name, you are the awareness of your name.
You are not your age, you are the awareness of your age.
You are not your cultural background, you are the awareness of your cultural background.

Get the drift? I hope so.

“So what? So what if I am the awareness of that stuff?”

YAY! Great news, my friend!
Being awareness means that you get to choose your own reality!
It is up to YOU to decide what to accept or reject into your field of awareness.

So the process of becoming is simply asking yourself what are you aware of.
What thoughts are you aware of? Your own? Those imposed on you by others? A little bit of both?

If you realize that you have adopted the thoughts of others rather than your own, this isn’t a bad thing. It isn’t a good thing either. It just IS. This is how we grow – by exchanging ideas with one another.

Things are what they are – things ARE. PERIOD. Whether something is good or bad depends on the preference of the aware being.

So, for instance, the experience of eating chocolate ice cream may be good for me because to my awareness I experience something good from eating it. Someone else, however, may be eating from my chocolate ice cream cup yet have a distasteful experience because to their awareness they experience something bad from eating chocolate ice cream. There is nothing in the particles of chocolate ice cream itself that is coded with “goodness” or “badness” – these types of labeling are judgements of the experiencer based on the effect a particular thing has in combination to their particular being – to their awareness.

So what am I ultimately saying?
– Become YOU.

Do you like chocolate ice cream because YOU like chocolate ice cream or have you come to like chocolate ice cream because people might think you are cool if you eat chocolate ice cream?

Or fill it in this blank:
Do you like ___________ because YOU like _________ or do you like___________ because you believe X person(s) want you to like ___________?

Are you YOU because YOU take pleasure in who you are or are you YOU because of what you believe other people want you to be?
And maybe it’s a combination of both.
It isn’t bad to tag along with what others think is cool – that’s fine – we have words for that: admiration, inspiration, sharing, absorption, learning.
It only becomes a problem when you are not happy with yourself because you are not being true to who you are but are living a life that is decorated by what others want you to be.

When we seek to be what others want us to be, we are seeking approval.
We are seeking approval from others because we have failed to approve of ourselves just as we are. Somewhere along the way we adopted the awareness that “the way I am, as I am, is not good enough.”

Not good enough to whose awareness?

See, as long as to YOUR awareness you are enough, then no matter who tells you “YOU ARE NOT ENOUGH,” this statement will fall flat on its feet – it will have no power over you. It would be the same as a person telling me over and over “chocolate ice cream sucks.” This statement has no power over me because to MY awareness – CHOCOLATE ICE CREAM FUCKING ROCKS!

Be YOU Because YOU like it – whatever it is that you are. And if others like you too – AWESOME – if not, who cares? NOT YOU is all that matters. It is not for their awareness to decide what YOUR AWARENESS KNOWS TO BE TRUE FOR YOU.

YOUR AWARENESS IS ALL THE MATTERS.

Become YOU.
🙂 ❤

Trust Yourself

There are so many people out there saying so many different things that it can become really overwhelming sometimes. One particular type of statement that really gets on my nerves is the one that sounds something like: “It’s not this, but THIS.” The problem with this kind of statement is that sooner or later someone else will just say the exact opposite: “No, It’s not ‘THIS,’ but THAT!”
People will always have something to say about life and how it should or shouldn’t be, but at the end of the day it’s not their place to tell you what you should do or how you should live.
Only you have the power to decide what to do with your life and in which direction to stir it.

Instead of asking what others want from you or what they think you should do, start consulting your own being. Next time you get an urge to ask your friends what they think you should do, stop for a moment and look inside yourself and ask your very own self: “Hey, [speak your name], do you think I should do this?” Start to look within your own self and trust your decisions. Everyone has an opinion, and YOUR opinion is just as valid.

Trust your intuition. Trust the feelings that are guiding you. Let your own person shine. Let your ideas flow. Stop worrying about earning the approval of others and begin to approve yourself.

Every day tell yourself these words:
I am enough.
I approve myself.
I accept myself as I am.
I am capable of making my own choices.
I trust my own being.
I believe in myself.
I believe I will succeed.

Let your own voice be heard. Free yourself from needing the validation of others and start looking to yourself for validation. It can be tempting to want others to pat our backs so that we can feel we are accepted and belong, but once you start to accept yourself it will not matter who is for or against you because you will have everything you need – YOU.

Only YOU can walk your path and only YOU are living your life.
Your life does not belong to your friends.
Your life does not belong to your family.
Your life belongs to YOU – and YOU are the author of your story.
Be free to live your life according to your liking without fear of the judgement of others.
As long as you are not hurting yourself or others, there is no reason to be afraid of being yourself.
YOU ARE FREE TO BE YOU!

Note To Self: TOUGH LOVE

DISCLAIMER: If you are sensitive to vulgar words – you should probably stop reading now, I used a few in this post.

There are a bunch of beautiful kind words I wanted to post here today.

But instead, this is what it will be for now:

STOP BEING A LITTLE BITCH! SUCK IT UP! TOUGHEN UP!
STOP BEING A CRY BABY ASKING FOR THE APPROVAL OF OTHERS SO YOU COULD BE OK!

APPROVE YOURSELF!!!!!!

LOVE YOURSELF!!!!!

YOU DEFINE YOURSELF AND STOP ASKING OTHERS TO APPROVE OF YOU SO YOU CAN TAKE ACTION.

JUST DO IT AND SHUT THE FUCK UP – GET IT TOGETHER AND STOP BEING A LITTLE VICTIM THINKING THE WORLD OWES YOU SOMETHING!!!

GOSH!!! GET IT TOGETHER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

YOU ARE NOT ALONE! SOMETHING SO MUCH GREATER THAN YOU IS HOLDING YOUR HAND JUST MOVE GOD-DAMMIT!!!! MOVE YOUR DAMN FEET AND HANDS AND MOUTH AND SPEAK AND DO AND ACT!!!!

STOP ASKING EVERYONE ELSE AND THEIR MOTHER’S WHAT THEY THINK YOU SHOULD DO –

WHAT DO YOU WANNA DO?? 

WHAT DO YOU THINK??

WHERE DO YOU WANNA GO?

TAKE THE WORLD BY THE BALLS AND BE THE CREATOR OF YOUR STORY.

Sorry guys… sometimes I gotta be tough… Sometimes we need a slap in the ass.

Believe – believe against all odds – believe so hard that you SQUEEZE YOUR DAMN DREAMS FROM THE REALM OF ETERNITY INTO THE REALM OF REALITY. BELIEVE SO HARD THAT YOU COME TO KNOW YOUR DREAMS ARE TRUE…

It’s not gonna happen over night – it can, of course, if you literally believe hard enough – but if it doesn’t just trust, trust and believe that your victory will come. I am still in the trust phase, trying to cope in this damn, harsh world but I know together we will make it! I know we will see better days!

🙂 BREATH.

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