I was walking through the park with a couple of work colleagues this afternoon. We were talking about our lives and checking in with one another as to where we are at in life and what’s been happening. We found ourselves talking about things like divorce, money and living arrangements and as we continued to talk and walk, our young work mate turned to the two of us and said: “you guys are Debbie Downers”. The comment triggered an intense emotional reaction within me, one of complete hurt and sadness.
A few things came up as I processed the comment, and what specifically it was about the comment that caused such an emotional reaction within me. Here’s what came up for me as I sat with it all watching the tide roll in….
I felt hurt and saddened from the judgemental comment made by someone whose opinion and perspective I value. I felt sad that this person perceived me in that moment as a “downer”. I found I started questioning myself, asking myself questions like: what if I am a downer? Is my story and what I share depressing those around me? Maybe I shouldn’t talk about it. Maybe I am a downer. Maybe my life is a depressing mess that no one wants to hear about. I allowed myself to become completely unravelled.
And through the process of unravelling a beautiful gift was illuminated; she showed me a part of myself in need of healing. A part of me judges and beats myself up about where I am at on my journey, about the way my life has unfolded and how my life looks so different to the lives of others. I often find myself judging and comparing my life’s journey to another’s. There are times when I say to myself “Jacqueline, why couldn’t you have stayed married and been happy with the white picket fence?” and “why can’t you be one of these people who rocks up to the same workplace each and every day for 25 years and be completely ok with it?” Why, why, why?????
And finally, when I choose to let go of the judgement, the truth is all that’s left. And the truth is this: I am not prepared to stay in a marriage in which I am extremely unhappy and in which I feel every part of me is supressed. I won’t stay because someone tells me I have to, or that’s what I SHOULD do. I trust I am being guided and supported to what is meant to be and even if the people closest to me don’t support me and judge me as I walk the path of divine truth, I know I am going to be ok. I will continue to trust I am being supported and in each and every moment am being guided back to ME; the person I was born to be – all that I am. I will continue to stand in the raw beauty and truth of who I am, and I WILL NOT change or alter any part of who I am for another – I have been there before and I am not willing to endure that deep pain and suffering again.
So yeah, maybe some people perceive my story as depressing. And some days those same people will witness me on my knees in a complete state of absolute surrender with tears flowing and words getting caught in my throat. But my truth is this: I would much rather be witnessed being raw and vulnerable, having made some of the most courageous decisions of my life than be witnessed as someone who was paralysed by fear; too afraid to make the decisions they know they need to, and too afraid to be seen for who they really are.