It’s so easy to list everything that was utterly “wrong” with the past 15 months.
I could take up hours and pages trying to adequately do any form of justice to sharing the pain, fear, anger, frustration, hopelessness, exhaustion, grief and heartache.
But that certainly wouldn’t be fun for anyone! (Especially not for me).
It’s all still so raw and so real and at the forefront of my mind and heart, I don’t even need to dig too deeply to try and find it. And although I believe we are finally out the eye of the storm itself, the destruction and devastation needs its own time to process and then overcome. Bodies, hearts, minds and spirits are so precious and so fragile, no matter how strong we believe they are, and they take time to heal, rebuild and awaken fully once again.
I’m learning to honor that and hold space for that and be patient.
We can’t rush a flower to grow.
We’ve traveled a long hard road and at different resting points, it’s important to not just look back and see how far you’ve come, but it’s also important to recognize the gifts you’ve collected along the way.
The gifts these past 15 months have brought me are worth unwrapping and sharing.
And although I had to work harder than I’ve worked before for anything ever in my life – it was well worth the deeper dive and it’s certainly worth celebrating. Because although life can throw us some powerful knocks that wipe us down to the ground without warning or preparation, there is something down there we’re supposed to find.
What did I possibly find these past 15 months whilst being knocked down, out of breath, bleeding metaphorically from the gaping wounds of loving someone so much and not being able to take the pain away, as if the life inside of me had been sucked out with a blow that hurt so badly, I couldn’t even reach inwards to mend my own broken heart.
As I slowly find my way back up, I found these gifts…
- A closeness to my children that is indescribable. A relationship and bond that has another added dimension.
- A return to running, something I hadn’t done in ages! (This led to additional gifts of two half marathon dreams fulfilled).
- A deep appreciation of health and how to never take it for granted, ever. Each movement is a gift. Each pain-free minute a gift.
- The gift of continuing education! My NLP Master qualification – tools and techniques that literally changed my life and continue to feed my soul.
- Heightened awareness of and thankfulness for my most beautiful, genuine and unconditional true friendships. We can’t get back up alone. The gift of holding hands. It’s a lonely road and company makes a difference. I love the people in my life wholeheartedly.
- Opportunities to experience a broad range of different healing professionals – something I would never had access to or the privilege of knowing. My eyes have been opened to a whole new world! The gift of new eyes!
- The gift of writing and journaling. Finding my shaking voice among the screaming loud noise of heart-ache, worry and sleep deprivation.
- The blessing of travel and trips to beautiful places and the creation of unforgettable memories. The gift of collecting so many wonderful experiences!
- Meditation & Mindfulness Practices – the gift of finding a haven of quiet, an oasis amidst the chaos. I benefit so much from this every day of my life.
- Prayer – my sacred time to connect with my faith and get much-needed strength to get through each day as best as I could. The gift of wanting to pray, and not having to pray.
- The gift of an entire family reunion – having my whole family together for Idan’s Barmitzvah was a dream come true, in every possible way imaginable.
- Meeting new parts of myself. The journey of self-discovery isn’t fun-fairs, fairies and flowers believe me. It’s often painful and dark and a struggle way before it’s anything close to resembling awakening, liberating and transformational. This gift has come with layers and layers to unwrap. Makes it all the more fascinating!
- Having my rock, my soul mate and best friend as a husband – the gift of holding each other up when all we wanted to do was crumble. I treasure the gift of learning how to put shattered hearts back together again. The gift of knowing it’s possible.
- The gift of family that cheers you on and wraps you in endless love. Just when you think you can’t throw one more punch, there are the very best people in your corner who look after you so that you can continue to fight your fight.
- The gift of my super power as a human being: choice. And my ability to keep choosing day after day to get up and put a brave smile on my face and one foot in front of the other. Some days this is easier than others.
Going through any challenge is a process, not an event.
It happens gradually and all we can really ever do is whatever it takes to get through the moment we’re in right now.
I have learned to pause, to sip my coffee slowly, to be present at every sunset, to hug extra tightly, to laugh more, to let go, to forgive, to appreciate, to look after myself, to say no, to ask for help, and to believe that anything is possible.
We all go through our own complex mazes of trying challenges and seemingly insurmountable tests. Collecting gifts along the way is a beautiful and eye opening reminder that even when life is terribly messy, and the maze is intensified with obstacles and stone walls, there are some pretty amazing treasures wrapped up along the way just waiting for us to find them, open them and enjoy them!
Whatever your maze, I invite you to write down your gifts.
And just like when you open a gift there is that element of surprise, I can’t even begin to describe the overwhelming surprises each gift has brought to my life.
My wish for you is that each gift you unwrap brings you everything you want and need.