As a young girl I was sexually abused by older boys in the back street. At the time I knew what was happening was indecent and intrusive but felt powerless to speak out about what was going on. The trauma or scarring imprint from this abuse was then an overlay through which I experienced life. I acutely felt disgraced, disregarded, disconnected and appalled by the lovelessness in the world. The experience of abuse led me to behave in loveless ways. I had little regard for myself and others. I turned to drugs and alcohol to soothe the pain. I abused myself through food, sex, and had completely dysfunctional relationships with those around me and with myself.
As a reaction to being so badly violated, I had to let the world know and feel my pain. As a teenager and young adult, I was a complete mess, feeling completely broken on the inside. At the same time, I developed a very composed and polished persona with which I could face the world. Over the years I sought help from psychologists, but these ventures didn’t lead to any change in my behaviours. I was not ready to heal and take responsibility for the pain I carried from the abuse.
Despite reaching the lowest of lows and attempting suicide, a little part of me deep down inside always knew that the level of disregard I had experienced and was now living was not the truth. Nevertheless, everywhere I turned, every relationship I had, everything in my life kept me in a spiral of despair and helplessness. No matter how hard I tried to bury the pain and pretend it wasn’t there, I began to realise that unless I committed fully to heal the hurt it would never leave me. By maintaining the momentum of my internal narrative and self-talk, I was the one perpetuating the cycle of abuse indefinitely.
It was when attending a friend’s wake that I felt something completely different from all I had felt before. This awakening as such, or call, engaged the buried part of me that knew there was more to life than the cycle of abuse I had experienced, and came in the appearance of Annette Baker and Gabrielle Caplice. They spoke at my friend’s wake and somehow managed to lift the heaviness in a room of very sad, grieving people to a level that was lighter and more spacious. Their presence on that day was full of love in a true and unimposing sense and I just knew I had to connect with them.
Over the last 2 years I have been on a path of return from the disregard I experienced and have since chosen to heal from. The most incredible gift I have been given was the call of responsibility to heal. Yes, the trauma of abuse had hurt me, but how I had been living perpetuated more abuse upon myself and others. I came to understand that in truth, we are responsible for our state of being and that we need to make the initial movements to heal. The true healing that came to me was feeling that under the layers of abuse there is an untouched inner-most and by connecting to that I was able to free myself from the burden of the trauma experienced.
I had lived my life wearing the trauma from abuse as a suit of protection and excuse for living in disregard. I had indulged in the victimhood of what had been done to me but at no point would I admit how much of the abuse and disregard I kept in circulation. That was until I met Annette and Gabe and was introduced to The Way of The Livingness. The deep love I was held in by these two practitioners allowed me to truly feel the internal poverty and lovelessness I had chosen to live with. Until that point, I had never been given a choice. I believed that the abuse was me and I was the abuse. The Livingness revealed to me what was true – I was responsible for what quality I lived in. This revelation turned my life around.
The connection I had with my body changed. I went from a denseness and drive like I was always running, to a deep sense of gentleness and love for myself. Abusive habits fell away without me having to try. I gradually became aware of the damage alcohol was doing to my body and relationships. For the first time I didn’t have to use will power or force to abstain, the desire to drink just fell away. I noticed how coffee made me racy and certain foods made me feel heavy, tired, or put me into a state of disorientation and drive. I became aware of how uncomfortable feelings and emotions would move me to behave in a certain way.
Perhaps most importantly, I became aware of how I moved in the world and interacted with others. I became aware that although I projected a persona of reasonableness and openness, my heart was always closed to others. I was not in the true expression and flow of love that’s on offer for us all to connect with. As I let down my guard and connected with this preciousness again, age-old hurts were released, and space was created for true relationship.
My husband was no longer the enemy and convenient scape goat for my mundane irritations in life. As I evolved and changed my relationship with myself, there was an offering and space for our relationship to change as well. Our marriage went from a dysfunctional arrangement, even though it looked good on paper, to one that is now truly beholding of each other. I no longer seek externally for comfort, recognition, and security. I deeply know and feel that all of this comes from within.
The level of control and manipulation I exerted over my life to keep it all together is no longer required. I have experienced true freedom from the senseless circulation of abuse from a surrender into deep love and tenderness offered by our Soul. I have seen the lie for what it is. I have seen that by not taking responsibility to heal the hurt, I’ve not only kept myself in separation from this deep beholding love, I have also contributed to a loveless way of living that creates the loveless world in which we live. We all have a responsibility to heal.
The scars and imprint of trauma from the abuse I experienced no longer rule my life. I am no longer held in the falsity of being a victim. By refuting the circulation of abuse and choosing another way to live I have stepped back toward the connection with my inner heart. Today I live with a level of empowerment and purpose that is beyond anything my old patterns of behaviour could offer. There is deep beholding love in my life that comes from me and connects with others. The amazing turn around in the depth of love I have for myself and those around me is infinite and ever expanding. All of this because I was empowered to take responsibility to heal. I was empowered to take responsibility for myself through the quality of how I lived and the choices I made.
Reflecting on my journey, from the outset it seemed like my issues were insurmountable. I felt as though there was no love in the world for me and this life was only hard and harsh. I felt like we were all pitted against each other in a race to get “somewhere”, while looking good and accumulating experiences and assets. I know now this is not the true essence of what life is about. Life is about moving in love. Yes, there is harshness in the world, but it comes from our own movements in harshness. This harshness is continually circulated until you choose not to circulate it anymore. Life is setup on the falsity of separation, and I now know that there is a truer way for us all to live. To live a life from love, openness and purpose starts by taking the first step of many in responsibility back towards the true heart we are all from.
From a place of complete contraction and withdrawal I have been able to move into the lightness and joy of walking with the love that comes from my inner-most. This is of course without perfection but at least I know I have a choice and a part to play. I’m not a hapless victim to circumstance. If this shift is possible for me, it is possible for anyone. When you’re connected to the truth of living from your Soul, life is beautiful even when it’s not perfect. There is nothing to hide, nothing to protect, nothing to feel personally hurt about. There is only ever a gentle surrender and deepening back to the love that was always there for us to return to.