Arghh. Ever since moving to Atlanta I have found myself incredibly angry and judgmental. Mostly judging myself, but not always. I despise judgment so it was grounds for being even angrier at myself. I know I have the power to choose my thoughts and I kept reaching for the gratitude and self love but it always seemed just out of reach. *more judgment* I felt a swell of something bubbling up inside me and frankly I was terrified of it. I knew a break was coming. Would I end up in psychiatric care? I wasn’t convinced the answer would be no.
Tater Tot (you know my wonderful, down to earth, calm chihuahua *sarcasm*) did it. He broke me. Fine. That’s not true. He was just responding to what he saw in me and became fearful. He started pooping in the house (again). He began barking at everything, stopped walking well on the leash, basically reverting back to all of his old behaviors. I don’t know, kind of like how I had. GAH. So frustrating when an animal points out your flaws – FINE – opportunities for growth. (nope, I don’t still have a little anger resonating)
Anyway, I was able to take a step back from myself and watched with a critical, judgmental eye at how I was treating him. And, it was awful. I had no compassion for him. I yelled, I pulled at his leash, I treated him in a way that if I ever saw someone else do to their dog, I would judge the shit out of them thinking about how they didn’t deserve a dog. So, I cried. And cried. And cried some more. Did I deserve his unconditional love? Did I deserve anyone’s love? Did I deserve my own love?
Of course I know the answer to all of those questions is yes. But, I couldn’t understand how. How do I accept unconditional love and more importantly give it to myself?
I think acceptance is the key. Accepting every aspect of your being. Anger is a part of my being. I deny it because it feels so icky. The problem has been the more I deny it, the stronger it gets. But, when I really took the time to examine myself, I felt like I wanted to slap myself upside the head with a big old, “Duh!”
I am a fiery, red headed Italian woman. And, a Leo. My ayurvedic body type is Vata-Pitta with an emphasis on the Pitta (strong willed being a factor in that). To say I am stubborn is a gross understatement. I have known all of this about myself my whole life and have used spirituality as a way to learn to let go of it. I wanted it all gone because I just wanted to be a peaceful, happy go lucky person. The problem with that is, it would never work because that is NOT me. I could practice all sorts of meditation, yoga, and any other spiritual work but until I accept all aspects of my being, I will never find peace.
The awesome thing that I have begun to learn in approaching and having the strength and courage to really look at myself is that all of these facets of my personality make up for one passionate being. I was just approaching it all wrong. I don’t need to deny these aspects, I need to embrace them, love them and learn how to use them creatively, passionately and for good. Holy shit. Imagine the difference I can make. Just acknowledging myself this way has released so much of the ickiness I have felt. A weight has been lifted off my shoulders and I am capable of compassion again – for Tater Tot and myself.
Go ahead, I encourage you. Find the courage to really look at all aspects of yourself. Find the courage to love yourself. What incredible gifts will you uncover?