Just Breathe

It’s 3:48am, and I am wide awake.  I have been laying in my bed, with a reeling mind for enough time that I have decided to just get up.  I know exactly why I can’t settle; I have had a hard week.  A week where I literally haven’t been able to tell what is up or what is down.  I am filled with the kind of worry and heart ache that I am literally looking up to the starry sky waving that symbolic white flag, to the universe, in full surrender.  For reals universe, you win, I surrender.


This moment is the first real chance I have had, where I can actually let myself truly feel what has been happening.  I have been so busy with work, parenting and living my life, that I have been continuously putting these feelings on the back burner.  Thinking that maybe, just maybe,  if I ignore them long enough they will miraculously disappear? I knew full well that they wouldn't and just kept on pushing through.  I wasn’t ready to really look at everything that I was feeling PLUS I knew that when I did look, I would have to admit that things are not one hundo.


What I am realizing as I write this, is that I am trying to do too many things all at once.  I am trying to be the perfect mom to my 14-year-old daughter as she goes through her own heartache and pain, convinced that I can make it better for her.   And to add to the parenting worry, I have also tried to be the perfect partner, the amazing lady boss of SoulShine, a supportive friend, daughter, sister, auntie and overall perfect person.  Which has all led me here ~ sitting in the dark, at my computer with a pit in my stomach that has now radiated up to my heart. 


The truth is, I’ve been here before.  This isn’t a new feeling for me, or the first time that I've been awake in the night with a reeling mind and an achy heart.  I know that my need to achieve and to do it all has brought me here.   I am a multi-tasker and a ‘yes’ person to fault.   I also know that this exact moment, while everyone is sleeping, is the perfect time for my heart to wake me up, because there ain’t a darn thing I can do; but feel.  I can’t busy myself in the kitchen or with work.  I can’t run errands, or occupy myself with conversations.  Nope.  My heart knows that this is the time to get up and sink in to these feelings.  Examine them, write them out, FEEL, and above all else JUST BREATHE.  Oh, I also know why I have been avoiding this.  Because each time I allow myself to truly feel into any emotion, is not amazing.  In fact, it is exact opposite.  It's scary and it hurts. 


The main emotion that I am feeling right now is fear.  Fear that I have done something wrong.  That I messed up somewhere along the way.  That I have failed.  Mostly in my parenting, but also in my work and my overall life choices.  It always comes back to that.  Should I have done something different.  If I did X rather than Z, would I still be here right now?  Would my daughter still be hurting?  Would my life still look like this?  Would I have more money?  Be more successful? Would worrying still keep me up at night?


And then my heart chimes in: "Honey, it doesn’t matter.  Because right here is where you are". 




*Insert, big breath and a sigh*


It makes total sense that the chorus of the song (BREATHE) will not leave my mind and has been on constant repeat all night:   

"Because you can't jump the track

We're like cars on a cable and

Life's like an hourglass glued to the table,

No one can find the rewind button, girl

So just cradle your head in your hands.

And breathe, just breathe, whoa breathe just breathe”



Okay, so now that that we’ve established that, what’s next.  What’s the solution?  What can I do to let go of this feeling of failure?  To ease this pit in my stomach, this feeling of fear and that I have messed up?  Each time I repeat this question over in my mind, while taking in my deepest breath, I keep coming back to this one word: LOVE.  Because Kara, LOVE is the opposite of FEAR.  Love is a place of full trust.  Love knows surrender.  Love knows that everything is perfect, all of the time, even the times when it doesn’t feel like it.  Love can guide us from the dark places. But of course not without a wee catch; first, we need to let love in.  Or rather, I need to let LOVE in.


So now, let's look back on my week with reflection.  If I am honest with myself and had chosen to let love in, rather than letting my fears rule while pushing away the yucky feelings, this is what things could have looked like:


  1.  I would have trusted that my daughter is guided & protected and on her own path.  I would trust that I have done everything in my power to show her unconditional love, support and strength over her 14 years. I would trust her and know that she can get through tough times, just as I have.  I would quit blaming myself and know that even though I have made mistakes, not once did I stop loving her.
  2.  I would trust that where I am in my career is perfect.  I would remember that I am doing what I LOVE, following my passions, following my heart and doing what excites me every day.  I would also remember that when you live in that place of passion and excitement, that the universe always provides.  In.  All.  Ways.
  3.  I would have also embraced SELF love.  I would have said no more than yes, and risked disappointing others, and known that is ok.  I would have remembered the things that I need to take care of myself in order to feel like my cup is full (yoga, walks in the woods, time alone, writing, playing music) and I would have done that.
  4. I would know with all of my heart, that where I am is exactly where I am meant to be.  Hands down.  I would have taken the time to really look at this incredible and amazing life of mine and realize that, of course, I wouldn’t change any decision I have made along this crazy journey.  Because it brought me to this exact (self-realization) moment in time. 


So at the end of the day (or in my case, at the end of this long night) what I feel is the most important thing to remember is, we are all here trying the absolute best we can.  We may fall, make a mistake, make a choice that will hurt someone in order to be true to ourselves.  BUT, we have to remember, that we are exactly where we are meant to be, otherwise we would be somewhere else.  And, if we can truly sink into our feelings and not continuously push them away, then we will always win.  If we are willing to truly feel our emotions, feel our fears and fully surrender to them, then we will be left with trust and faith.  Which to me equals LOVE. 


You too are exactly where you are meant to be. And if all of your emotions and feelings are too difficult and too much to accept all at once, that's ok.  

JUST BREATHE.  I’ve got you.




For the full version of the beautiful song that inspired this entry click HERE