Breaking Down the Box

I couldn’t have guessed what the real implication of moving out of my own ‘comfort zone’ would be this early in 2012. Yesterday – January 1 – I had an emotional meltdown. Typically I’m very mindful of how I communicate and interact when my emotions are stretched to the edge – and even that isn’t a regular occurrence. Mindfulness in expression, I’ve worked hard to connect to that space. And I really thought taking part in this ‘no comfort zone’ challenge would expand my ability to live authentically and connect me even more intimately with my purest self.

As I tried to fall asleep after unleashing tears, anger, frustration and all of what I was feeling inside on the people involved, I could hear myself thinking aloud: ‘Welcome to your no comfort zone, Jackie.’ Emotions neatly processed, words carefully chosen, choices weighed with conscious contemplation. I don’t ‘lose it’ very often, in fact I can’t recall the last time I did.

But the walls of safety, my desire for integrity and efforts of mindfulness couldn’t hold me in last night. It wasn’t unkindness that flowed from me, but a deep, deep pain and frustration that sought to move beyond the barriers and ‘right ways’ of expressing and just be heard. I can’t begin to tell you, my friends, how careful I usually am to not say something harmful, to not be the parent who can’t control her emotions when her children upset her, to hold it together and not become the ’emotional mother’ when I feel hurt by teenagers who have no idea what life is really about–because I don’t want to put ‘my stuff’ on them. I want to be a conscious mother who honors her children’s feelings and ability to choose–only perhaps I’ve done too much of that and the scales are out of balance. 

I would normally be checking everything I said this morning to see what damage I might have done. And yet, something deeper inside knows it wasn’t about that, and I wasn’t cruel or unkind. I was human. Feeling, expressing, speaking my truth–out loud. It’s not only our comfortable truth that we are compelled to share, is it friends? We have emotional truth, spiritual truth, mental truth–all are a part of our being. Emotional truth found her way to my lips last night, and she spoke with a passion that couldn’t be quieted. And here’s what’s true: I’m not sorry. Not because I’m pious–but because I can’t find anything to feel ‘sorry’ for. 

My realization in all this in real-life time of what I have known to be true: when we begin listening to our guidance (to walk five days in one week, for example) we step into the unknown and much, much greater things begin moving. The comfortable box I was in, where I could find peace in how I was interacting throughout this 6 month ordeal in our family took new form last night. What was once a nice square ‘cardboard box’ is now a flattened bit of flaps that no longer fit together. Alchemy. Spiritual alchemy. What was–is no longer. 

I don’t know what today will bring. I do know that I’m committed to this journey, however it leads me. And it feels quite clear that 2012 will bring an unveiling of the walls that confine who I am. Beyond those walls lives the mystery, the mystical journey, the magic of BEing. THAT is my destination. I’m so grateful to have found Marge’s post about the ‘no-comfort zone’ challenge. For in taking those steps of committing, listening to the guidance that came, and then following through and WALKING yesterday, already the transformation has made her entrance. And that was DAY ONE. 

 

 

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40 thoughts on “Breaking Down the Box

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  6. Dear, Dear Jackie,
    I can so relate to what you have written. Congratulations on breaking down! There is usually a break down before a breakthrough. This morning I attended the group with whom I am sharing The Course in Miracles… and it has been truly dizzying. Yes. We are human, even the Super Moms. If we are always perfect, what kind of role model is that for our children? LOL! It is all ok. It is perfect. You have made a huge difference to me in sharing this… Sending you much love and many hugs – and part of my NoCZ2012 has shifted because of that! Thank You. I will be writing more about it on my next blog post.
    Thank you!

    1. Betsy – I look forward to seeing what you’ll share!

      Thank you for your encouragement. Sometimes it’s hard – especially as a parent – to remember we’re human too. There feels to be a necessity of making sure we don’t misstep and harm our children, say something they’ll never forget or just not ‘get’ what’s happening. I think I’ve been able to understand not always being perfect for them…just perhaps not so much realizing I can’t always be perfect when working through difficulties with our teenagers. Sometimes I won’t keep my cool, be aware of their feelings, etc. That perspective is all new one…but then….so is being the mom of teenagers who are about to step out into life on their own.

      The greatest realization is that we are in a new stage of life – one that the head knows all about, but the heart has yet to navigate. I so appreciate your note. Thank you. xo

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  8. “We do not rise to the level of our expectations; we fall to the level of our training.” ~warrior poet Archilocus

    The problem we have with grand designs is we feel so overwhelmed when we can’t achieve them right away. As another warrior poet, Jim Morrison, once said, “We want the world and we want it NOW.” But find strength and peace in the words of Archilocus. There are no days where you have failed. Only days where you trained and got a little closer to your goal. One day, you will fall to the level of your training and find absolute peace in that fact. No more pain, hurt, frustration or even discomfort. All those concepts will have new light shed on them and be redefined in a way you never would have thought of them before.

    Peace & strength on your journey, brave warrior,
    ~Miro

  9. mkmercurio

    Last year I did the postaday challenge and wrote words, ideas, suggestions, conversations and posted photos. When I read back on those posts I know the subtext, what made me write, what was really happening in my world that I could elude to but never really share. It’s a fine line of unfolding and running naked. Running naked is ok when nobody really KNOWS you. When you run naked for all to see – and then realize how absolutely wonderful it feels and in fact — NOBODY cares — then there is a freedom unlike anything else!

    And giggles … lots of honest to goodness giggles!

    1. This reminded me of what I wrote on the inside cover of my book: “Writing a personal story is a bit like stripping yourself naked in public. Why do it? it’s scary – terrifying, really. But perhaps, by viewing my nakedness, you will draw courage to bring your own truth to light. Then we can dance together, naked under the moonlight.”

  10. “beyond those walls lives the mystery..” we are stepping out beyond the safe walls and out into the beauty of what is yet unknown to us. An emotional journey? yes, of course. Scary, fun, enlightening, perhaps at times frustrating, but we are stepping out and not going back behind the walls!

    1. We are Joss. I know my self wants OUT. To think of the walls that are there – that I didn’t even REALIZE were there….feels foreign. And I don’t want to live my life behind barriers or inside boxes. It’s as though all I was voicing last year, the things I said and focused on: being authentic, stepping into the I AM – is now becoming reality beyond just what I feel in my heart. There’s a difference, I’m realizing between the heart’s whispers and our emotional truth – that’s an AHA! right in this moment. xo

  11. WordsFallFromMyEyes

    Hi – I saw your comment on Zendictive’s page, & dropped by for a read. I thought – Isn’t it funny you’ve just unleashed tears, frustration ANGER and then he did his post!! This was great, honest, pensive. Happy NY 2012 🙂

    1. So glad you dropped by! Just went over and read Art’s post on the coffee today….and yes, it resonates with what I was feeling this morning. I’m realizing how much I’ve been focused on the ‘pretty cup’ – and you have no idea how true that is in my life even with coffee cups, lol. It’s about what’s inside, not the pretty package we use to display the contents.

      Happy New Year to you, my friend. xoxo

  12. “flattened bit of flaps that no longer fit together…” boy does that hit the mark! This conveys the power that I felt when I first met your gaze online so many months ago, before I really knew you at all. And always I was amazed that you could keep that much power packaged up so beautifully, while I was continuously a mess ; )
    I saw Malathy on New Years Eve for the first time in many months & hugged her deeply & said who would have known that for me HCN wasn’t about a business at all, but rather my final & complete obliteration of identity!?! So, thanks for letting this dynamic divine power out of your beautiful box. What a year this is turning out to be already! ♡Love♡Love♡Love♡

    1. What a year indeed! I love that you connected with Malathy and feel some form of healing in your sharing, Jeanette. So much is coming out of this commitment to the ‘no comfort’ – I can’t even begin to wrap myself around it all yet. I had no idea how ‘contained’ it’s all been…and even feel a bit surprised that this feels like ‘letting this dynamic divine power out of (my) beautiful box’ lol. I don’t think we always see it clearly. I’m glad to have soul friends who can…thank you. I’ll forever be grateful for that day…who knew? We had no idea that SOULSHARE-ing would bring such change into our lives. If letting go looks as good on me as it does on you, then I’m feeling VERY good about it! Love you. xoxo

  13. I love you Jackie. I love that you are human and I love your honesty and willingness to just be as you are. Raw isn’t comfortable, but it is healing and ground-breaking. You have nothing to be sorry for. I think we are sometimes so aware of things that we are sorry for just about everything and anything. You spoke your truth as it was and in that, it is a perfection in itself. Perfectly imperfect human-ness! Love you with all that I am. Namaste anam cara ❤

    1. YAY Anna and Jackie !!!!!! RIGHT ON ……” Perfectly imperfect human-ness! ” So Good To See You Anna – Missed You Tons – You know what i was singing so loud yesterday —— a song with a bad word – Oooooh no – lol – Out with the neat and tidy – and In with the RAW !!!!! Love and Understanding To You Both –
      Blasting this for You two !!!!!!
      xoxoxo Cat
      !!!!!!!!!! Namaste – All Love – Anam Cara – !!!!!!and by the way “Look i’m still Around ” Pink………

        1. Doesn’t it though = !!!! lol ….. Good Morning – and i thought too – when we sing – or let it out in a Physical way – good things are released – endorphins – all that – same kinda thing as running —- you get to this place – and then aha – you break on through —– and all is calm again …. at least for a while !!!!!!!! Love You —– Did You Read Anna’s blog – Oh My Goodness ! What a beautiful declaration ! I so love you two and so happy to reconnect with Anna – January 3rd ? What shall Your Bring out Today —– i wonder ! xo i see beautiful volcanos of truth everywhere – people writing from The Gut …….. Love it …….
          I am still singing over here – LOL —– Not PINK today – But Veruca Salt —– VOLCANO GIRLS XOXO
          love You Love You Love You xoxoxoxoxo You Know It !!!!!
          xoxoxoxo C!!!!!!

    2. Anna. xoxo I love you. I know it’s true…and I know I could so easily say it to someone else. I’m not even sure I could ‘make’ myself do it, only that it all just ‘happened’ this way. I needed to share the irony of stepping out of my comfort zone and the change the Universe ushered in so quickly. Thank you for loving me through it all. You are a very special part of my life, and I’m grateful to know you. Anam Cara….love you. xoxo

  14. Janece

    I’m not surprised in the least that by invoking the “No Comfort Zone” into your life, the first thing that happened was that all of your neatly tied together self broke down. People rarely want to sit in the fire of transformation for long…the refining does tend to bring to the surface those things within us that we thought we had all under control or, that we didn’t know were there to begin with. 🙂 I look forward to reading more about your journey, Jackie. To be honest, while this situation may have been very uncomfortable for you, it’s actually the first time I’ve really felt connected to you. I don’t relate to perfection very well…

    1. Well, I have to say that your comment threw me for a loop today. I read it this morning and then went about my day…all the while hearing the final sentence repeat inside myself: ‘I don’t relate to perfection very well….’ There was a sting that went with that sentiment for me. One that I don’t quite understand, but know is part of this whole process of ‘letting go’ and ‘unraveling’ what once was but is no longer needed.

      The beauty of not understanding is that the mind can’t take control. That’s where I’m heading in 2012…into the space where the mind becomes the observer and the deeper part of myself is the author. I’ve kept a clear line of distinction between sharing too much ‘personally’ on this blog…and yet that line is quickly dissolving. This year feels like a year in which it will be difficult to NOT be personal here.

      Thank you, Janece, for your presence and candid truth. I appreciate that and admire your style. Happy New Year to you. xo

      1. Janece

        🙂 I forget we haven’t really known each other that long, nor do we know each other well, Jackie. In rereading my comment, I would have done better to replace the editorial usage of the word “you” with “one”….so there would be no mistaking that I was making a generalized statement about a process you appear to be in… Something in your post spoke strongly to a similar process I have been through myself. See, I am a recovered Perfectionist…and the unraveling of that started when I was about the same age that you are now (I believe you just turned 40????) One of the first things that happened was that I was feeling very emotional, and in very deep pain – as you said that you were feeling.

        Some more about the “I don’t relate to perfection very well..” ….You’ve always appeared very together to me…very “perfect”, with your online persona. SO very full of goodness and light and love – so full of encouragement, wisdom, gentleness and beauty. You cast a very large aura and my own shadows taunt me in your presence.

        But that’s my stuff…anyway…..

        The tears, anger and frustration you described was something unusual for you, if I understood you correctly.. What I read into your description was that this very “deep pain”, and all the rest of that, must have been lying underneath the surface for some time. Nothing that strong – that powerful – comes instantaneously. And I made the assumption (perhaps wrongly) that initially, not being able to express your feelings in the “right” wasn’t perceived in a positive light.

        In my case, fear has always been the motivation for stuffing my feelings – and for the first 45 years of my life, I was a perfectionist…(not uncommon since I was an Adult Child and codependent). The first step on my pathway to transformation was when all my stuffed feelings started leaking out. It got really messy and – eventually – extremely liberating. Becoming transparent with myself first (oh, and with God. I had to deal with MUCH anger towards God), and with others, became a powerful tool. I learned it was a good thing – a right thing – to communicate my anger, pain and frustration as it came up and not allow it to stew.

        I wrote about much of my process on my earlier blogs, and somewhat in the first couple of years of this current one. And I think that’s why I said I felt really “connected” to you after reading this post. There was such transparency on a deeply personal level. I love personal 🙂

        Now, at almost 55, I thwart perfectionism in my life as much as possible because I’ve found it to be so stifling to everything from my spiritual/personal growth to my creative expression. Again, after re-reading my comment, I see I ended by babbling to myself, out loud.

        What I should have said was “BRAVO for these words that are filled with such authenticity and the courage displayed by stepping out of your comfort zone.”…and left my ramblings to myself.

        1. Thank you Janece…for your kindness, and for taking the time to share your thoughts. LOL…you’re very cute. I wouldn’t want you to ‘edit’ yourself because it might ‘sting’ a little. One of the things I admire about you and your writing is your ability to just ‘say it like it is.’ So no need to not talk out loud.

          Expressing frustration, pain, tears, anger – not so much that the expression of it is foreign in itself. But to express it to my CHILD, to not hold center for and with them felt foreign. As parents, we want to put our children first – and in this case, the built up energy of the situation completely took over. I couldn’t hold center as MOM, but instead communicated every piece of what I was feeling as Jackie – without taking a moment to consider how to handle it in a ‘parent’ way. It felt like ‘losing it.’ I’ve learned the expression with my husband, my siblings, my parents – but learning how to do this with children who are still MY children, but really no longer CHILDREN – ugh – I don’t know that dance. And so the music stopped….and I lost it.

          Here’s what I know is true, my friend, at least for me. I don’t feel that kind of ‘sting’ unless something is resonating. There must be some level of perfectionism that is calling to be broken down…and now is the time. While I haven’t seen myself in this light, there is some truth lurking in the shadows that needs to be seen. I treasure the journey, honesty, openness. This is all happening for me to step forward into all of that. And you, my friend, are a messenger who offered her assistance in doing so. No harm done….I needed that ‘bump.’ The personal feels too vulnerable – not to people seeing it, but more in my perception of it as ‘complaining.’ I have much to learn. Thank you for being one of the teachers along the way. xoxo

  15. That’s amazing Jackie .
    Now that is Transparency .
    All is I can write is Wow .
    I too – taking the challenge – Yesterday – January 1st found myself Not being able to stop creating – with all emotions pouring out – Not neat and tidy as i usually like to be . The big emotion was Autonomy —– Not sure why yet – But —– as you wrote – Only Day 1 !
    sending you understanding and warmth as you know i always feel Your heart – Comfort in a mystery —— Again and Again . …
    As i re-read you – There is an edge – not all circular anymore – but a definite edge in these words – Always Here —- In Heart and Spirit ….. xx Love You xo Cat

    1. Autonomy – I can so see that for you, Cat. You are a strong woman, capable of anything…and now you are stepping fully into that. Crossing the bridge and watching the limitations dissolve behind you.

      Funny…and edge and not circular…yet the box is no longer. More to say on this…but perhaps tomorrow in another post. I’m so glad to know you’re always here. You bring such a sense of love and comfort, beckoning us all to just BE. Love YOU. xoxo

      1. Funny how it all makes sense sometimes !!!!! No Boxes Jackie —– edgy autonomy —– I like that – see you are inspiring me everyday – I know what i am capable of – and somethings not so good at – But That’s all ok ! It has to be . Great Einstein quote – “Once we accept our limits ….we go beyond them …….” so let’s go beyond the beyond ,….. YES to the beyond !!!!! Me too on more to say tomorrow – But today – Responding in Love and friendship is Just enough —– xoxoxoxo Have a brilliant Day ! ps- it’s so cold in Toronto – My eyelashes were frozen when i came back from walking my dog !!!!!! Hope Georgia is warm and Cozy -! Love To You ——- always xoxoxoxo Cxx

        1. Georgia is COOOLLLDDD too. It does have to be ok. I don’t pretend to know all the language, but I do know the breaking apart continues. The mind tries to define it, but cannot. Today: responding in love and friendship is enough. Thank you. Love you. xoxo

          1. “IT DOES HAVE TO BE OK ”
            Brilliant Jackie !!!!!!
            It’s cold there ? I have been to Georgia – but for some reason – lol thought it was balmy there now ! warmth and warmth and Blankets o Love xoxoxoxoxo

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