Around this time last year, I started to gain some clarity about my life. I had just completed my first round of live shows on BBC Radio Leicester, I was consistently at the gym 3-4 times a week and I was starting to feel better after a pretty bad break-up some months before. I was finally gaining momentum towards becoming the woman I always wanted to be, and I was doing all of that whilst being a mum, which raised my boss-lady levels and street cred by about 100%!! I also ditched the wigs meaning I could finally scratch my scalp with my hands again, and not have to rely on a pen, chopstick or needle. Don't ask, it's been a journey!
(My official BBC pic which was taken a few weeks before I started. It's now been changed since I insisted it reflect the new me - See it here!)
In the midst of all of that greatness on the outside, something quite big was missing on the inside. It was hard to see at first because everything was going so well. Everyone would constantly tell me how proud they were of me, how much of a difference I was making and how influential I was increasingly becoming amongst my family, peers and the wider community. Bruv, I was GASSED!! So best believe I was lapping this up! My skin was glowing, my abs were poppin', my confidence was through the roof, and no-ones son (or daughter) could even come close to killing my vibe. Yet something much deeper was screaming at me. So deep my current lifestyle didn't permit or even want me to deal with - and that was my healing.
Healing is the one thing we can never run away from. It's part and package of becoming whole - again. If we look at it on a practical level, when you break a bone, you have to have a cast which exists to support, protect and act as an incubator for the bones and soft tissue to heal. Now according to my trusted friend Google, it's purpose goes much further than this:
"The cast helps to reduce the pain, swelling, and muscle spasms following the injury. If the bone is broken, the cast holds the fractured bone ends in correct alignment during the healing process. A cast, because of its rigid properties, will also provide protection from further injury."
I actually achieved this through all the glossy things my life has been surrounded by. The great job, the amazing family and friends, the life-changing opportunities I've been faced with, and obviously my new hair! All these things contributed to a lifestyle that made me assume I was healed and had it all figured out.
Until I started to get irritated.
Now before a cast is applied they first cover the injured area with "a layer of padding made of cotton or synthetic materials to protect the skin from irritation."
I skipped a step. I went ahead and glossed over my pain with all the fancy stuff that enabled me to function and get on with my day-to-day activities, but I didn't do the initial work; like talking through my problems and dealing with the stuff that caused me pain in the first place. Why? We'll there are so many reasons for this:
I've had this idea that healing is painful; which sounds quite weird as the words 'healing' and 'pain' shouldn't sit together, but on this matter, they co-exist quite seamlessly. To me, healing feels painful, and pain doesn't feel like healing, so on those grounds, Why on earth would I persue it?!
I was (still am) scared. I'm scared of what the process of healing will do. I'm scared it will make me face things I'd rather not face. I'm quite happy plodding along through life and having a degree of peace that enables me to function, parent and lead. The thought of going through something that will drag up all my aches and pains, leaving me in some 5-star emotional state is just not appealing in the slightest. So no #thankyounext.
I'm a busy person. I have a lot of things I'm preoccupied with, and healing doesn't quite fit into my schedule, in the nice little package I'd like it to come in. It's long, emotionally tasking, and I just don't have time for that. Sooooo again #thankyounext!
I'm ok. Like I'm actually ok. Nothing is really wrong. I'm really just fine. Superfine in fact! I've got my afrobeats, my friends, my plantain and stew. What more could one ask for? So #controlaltdelete and, oh yea.. #thankyounext.
I JUST WANT TO GET ON WITH MY LIFE. I want to look forward not back. I want to be successful, a good mother and an epic wife who can throw it down in the board room, bedroom and kitchen!!!! Like honestly, these are normal goals, I'm not tryna push the boat out and start doing wild things like finding healing and speaking to a therapist, like... hahaha who does that?!!
[Back to reality] I think this is the big one... because under all that #hotgirlsummer energy lies a girl who is really just wondering... what if I don't recover?
Since writing that down I've realised one coherent thing: every single point is grounded in my assumptions. They're all based on my perception of what healing could look like. I have no real idea if any of the above would happen. I have no clue! I've just made all of these assumptions and lived the past year of my life based on that.
That's quite scary, right? To make decisions based on your assumptions rather than researching to find out the facts, so you can make a more informed decision.
It would be wise to then ask myself if my assumptions are wrong, and wonder if the opposite could be true: That I won't fall apart, or that it won't be a long process, and that maybe I might become more successful if I go through with it. That's what any sensible thinking person would do right? Well, shock horror, I've not done that. I don't like questioning myself and I dont like doubting my beliefs. Because when you start asking questions you give room to the possibility that there could be another answer...
Now I'm angry because I've realised there really could be another answer!! So guess what folks, I'm ready to talk to a therapist.
I'm ready to find some answers to some new and old questions. I'm ready to find true healing, not just the glossy stuff, but the real stuff that leads to total peace and confidence on the inside. I'm ready to take off the cast and do the first bit.
In fact, I'm quite excited about it!
I've never broken a bone but I can only imagine the feeling someone would get when the safety net (cast) comes off and you can finally see/feel your arm again. When you don't need to use a pen, chopstick or... a ruler to scratch it. You can finally touch the parts that were once broken with your bare hands, and you can get the full function of your arm again. I wonna feel that on the inside, so I'm ready to peel off the layers and start again - properly this time.
Plus I also like talking about myself so this feels like a win-win! lol
Now brace yourselves as there's another layer to this madness...
As I said above, my perception of the process of healing has held me back from actually seeking it. In other words, what I thought of a situation impacted how I reacted towards it. So I've had to stop playing around and ask myself some honest questions, like what if my thoughts were different? What if the very things that have shaped my world view simply existed to pacify me, confirm my bias' and inform me in a limited way, rather than giving me the full picture of life as it is?
Up until this point, I genuinely thought I was seeing the world as it really was. But when I step out of my perception, which is grounded in my history (my lived experiences and inherited traits), the world looks very different.
We all see the world through the lens of our perceptions. To us our beliefs are fact, but to others, it's just opinion. So if I step outside of myself what is true? Are the ideas I have about healing and every other thing I face in my life the absolute truth? The moment I start to ask these questions is the moment I give room for doubt - the breeding ground for uncertainty.
Now I don't know if this is a good or a bad thing, but I've become very uncertain about many things. And for any conscious human being, you will know that uncertainty is very unnerving. (Watch this video as it will further explain what I mean).
So knowing all of this has since brought me to some new conclusions, and that's:
In order to learn, I have to unlearn.
I have to increase my curiosity about myself, even the things I am most sure of.
I have to get comfortable with uncertainty (not knowing), because as much as I despise it, it's the vital step that will get me to where I want to go in life.
All things new, creative and beautiful, are birthed from uncertainty.
"Uncertainty makes us feel vulnerable, so we try to escape it any way we can. Sometimes we even settle for misinformation or bad news over not knowing... Yet it really is possible to thrive amid uncertainty. It’s not about getting advice you can trust; it’s about faith and self-trust — believing that whatever happens, you’ll find a way through it. Without uncertainty, we’d never start a business or risk loving someone new. There are no guarantees when we step into the unknown. But these periods of discomfort can give rise to life’s most important adventures."
As you can imagine, all of this has fried my brain, when for the last few years, I was convinced I had this thing called life all figured out. So therapy feels like the logical next step.
This journey for me is about challenging myself to confront all the things I've believed to be true. I want to push past my assumptions and give room for a new reality. It may confirm things I already believe, it may birth something new, or it may do neither and I'll end up just falling apart as initially predicted. Who knows, but I'm finally willing to try.
I'm ready to take off the cast, do a google search and find myself a therapist.
Wish me luck!
Have you gone to therapy? Have you spoken to someone about the things in your past that have caused you pain? Have you battled with similar thoughts of uncertainty, and been hesitant to step into the unknown? If so I'd love to hear what your experience has been like. Hit me up in the comments, and let's talk.