Who am I was the question that ignited my self-awareness journey in 2011. It’s been a continual process of healing and discovery that began when I had to determine the next steps in life. My intention is to share my process to help others on their journey whose aspiration reflects mine - to know and mirror my true self to anyone whom I meet. But first…how did I get to this point of self-awareness?
Play now: https://youtu.be/HT_skjaFX0E
Play now: https://youtu.be/HT_skjaFX0E
Becoming the Observer
There came a point in my life where I didn't like who I’d become. Having lived most of my life outside of my body, where I was trying to please everyone, following how others’ defined me through their wants, needs, and beliefs, left me knowing myself only as the voice in my head. Looking at my reflection in the mirror, I saw an unhappy, confused, frustrated person whose body experienced increasing pain and discomfort. I really didn't know who I was anymore.
We are known as human beings. Having only experienced the human aspects thus far, I went in search of directly experiencing the ‘being’ aspect. This search for the meaning of my life began with learning Zazen meditation, where I learned to observe/witness my thoughts and emotions. As my mind began to quiet, my heart began to open, true self (soul), ‘being’ was revealed and my love of life was restored.
Becoming an observer allowed me to see glimpses of the sacred space within (the space of awareness), the beauty and goodness that I was born with (soul), and the felt sense of incredible life force energy (spirit) that is alive within us all.
Being uncomfortable to develop the new me
As a result of childhood trauma, I discovered I disassociated from my body and was no longer able to feel anything; neither true emotion or sensations. Having strong role models that mirror loving behaviours and good core values nurtures and nourishes a child’s healthy development. While the intention may have been there, the impact of domestic violence, sexual abuse, and addiction coupled with the unconscious lack of strong core values, definitely closed and armoured my heart. I became guarded, shut down, distant, confused, untrusting, and numb - unable to feel or express my true emotions. I only knew that I lived in fear, never having felt safe until I didn’t. As this was my familiar (my normal), I had to undergo a relearning of getting comfortable with the unfamiliar (my new normal).
Focused on wanting to know who I could have been if the slate was wiped clean of these experiences, I learned to be with and process the sensations in my body. For me, my body held the truth of my past while my mind had locked many of these experiences away. Becoming self-aware meant learning to become comfortable with the unfamiliar, with the unknown.
The Challenges of Triggers
When I was young, my body's natural intelligence knew intuitively what I could handle and process fully and what I couldn’t. What experiences I couldn’t process fully became stored in my body until I was at a point in my life when I was in a better position to face and explore my body sensations. Until then I was only able to unconsciously react from the triggered sensations, meaning from the pain.
Oppression has been passed down for generations from my ancestors. Having been raised in a family/culture that didn’t foster feeling or processing pain or trauma, my pain/discomfort level only increased. Relearning how to face and be with the unexpressed emotional sensations as they arose in my body, has become my new familiar, my new normal. Doing a U-turn, pausing and bringing a kind, curious attention to my direct inner experience, meant I had to face my suffering and experience the sensations of pain/discomfort. If I didn’t, the intensity only continued.
I consciously chose to recognize it as old energy that had never been processed and released properly out of my body. I’ve experienced intense throbbing, clenching, constricting, tightening, stabbing, pinching, excessive sweating, pulsating, vibrating, electrical current sensations where it felt like my heart was coming out of my chest or like I was being suffocated. However the way that intense energy chose to arise, it was about learning to be the observer/witness to it rather than identifying with it.
When I became the observer and rode the energy’s wave, giving it space, allowing and letting the energy be as it is, bringing my hand to my heart, reminding myself that I am safe, saying ‘Yes’ to the sensation and asking it what it needs, the energy dissolved on its’ own. I quickly learned that if I identified with the sensation, it only kept the energy coming back again and again. Getting comfortable with my direct inner experience has allowed me to see what’s on the other side of the pain/discomfort - freedom, stillness, peace, and loving awareness.
Working the RAIN process was the key that unlocked my ability to be with my body’s sensations and to fully feel and express my emotions. This knowledge is what continues to bring me closer to a state of self-awareness – knowing what's going in my body, in a moment-to-moment experience, where I can return to wholeness and access the natural, beautiful wisdom that arises out of my heart.
The Openness that Self-Awareness brings
When I’m open, I’m ready to experience life as it unfolds before me, rather than overlaying it with my thoughts, concepts and limiting beliefs from my past which only distort my perception of life. I continue to see through them to discover the truth of who I am on my journey inward. I liken it to peeling away the layers of an onion, the more the truth of conditioned behaviours and beliefs are unearthed, the being (true self, soul) within is revealed to shine its’ radiant light. Connecting to this stillness opens my heart and mind, and brings me home to who I am. It’s conscious choose to live my authentic life from the space of awareness (soul). And from Soul, there's only eternal love.
My Healing Toolbox for Self-Awareness
By using a variety of modalities, I was able to see the truth of who I am. Therapy, Reiki (energy healing), QiGong, Medical QiGong (relaxation techniques), Zazen Meditation, Insight Meditation, Vipassana Meditation, and Mindfulness Meditation Practices brought a new understanding of self-awareness, wholeness, and new core values.
The Source is the Soul
Releasing the energy of the pain, opened me to experience the aliveness of the life force energy (spirit) within my body. It has opened and freed my heart (my soul) to respond with love.
I’ll continue to explore and delve the depths of my soul to unearth the pain and sorrow to break the cycle of oppression for the lineage of women. Freedom is self-realization.
I define Source as the giver of life. What breathes you is what breathes me. At our truest essence (being) we are one. The one true Soul.
Pat Wright is certified in the following disciplines: QiGong, Medical QiGong (Relaxation Techniques), Meditation, Reiki, and Mindfulness Meditation. If you are interested in speaking to her directly, you can find her contact information in the Avanti Member Market Place.