In 5th grade my teacher came to me during recess: Jemini, they all want to play with you. Why don’t you let them? Why do you push them away?
I lived an entire lifetime pushing people away before I even realized I was doing it. I sincerely believed people just didn’t like me and never would, simply because I was there.
This isolation escalated into a decade of drug abuse and an inner dialogue so polluted with shame and self-loathing, I often felt there was no way out. I felt misunderstood, useless and like I would never live up to the potential I heard about.
I had a terrible relationship with my body and food. Completely unable to understand sustenance, nourishment and a totally distorted sense of beauty. I hated myself and my life. I believed myself a victim and the external world responsible for how I felt.
Which was helpless, hopeless and lost.
I played out the same emotional drama in every romantic relationship. Unable to authentically connect and bewildered when it didn’t work out. I felt awkward in social situations even though my job as a server/bartender required me to be a “social butterfly”.
I had poor experiences with therapists and felt like I had to figure everything out myself because a self-sufficient person doesn’t ask for help. I hit rock bottom again. And again. I was homeless, jobless and broke. I’ve been lost, broken and so engulfed in fear I thought the ceiling of my apartment was literally caving in.
I was addicted to suffering. And it wasn’t working.
So I studied. And studied. And studied. Neuro-Linguistic Programming , creativity and the psychology of engagement. I studied religion, spirituality and the difference. I studied brain development, neuro-plasticity, and co-dependence. I got certified in pilates and wellness coaching. I learned about shame and emotional intelligence. I started meditating. I became fascinated with behavior change; what facilitates it, what cultivates it, what solidifies it. I viewed myself as an experiment.
I journaled, I wept, I made amends and I studied some more.
Now, I look around my life in wonder. Complete awe. I can’t believe the things I’ve created for myself. Except, I can, because they’re here. I own a home with the man of my dreams. (watch our love grow on Insta @jemandthegiant) We have a family. I actually cook dinner. That you can eat. I invite friends to share meals with me. I travel the world seeking adventure. I wake up in ease.
But, I remember all those years waking up with panic, frantic and terrified of the sun.
This blog is a collection of things that make life better. It’s about authenticity and what that means. It’s about healing and hoping and letting shit go. It’s about knowing where to go for help because none of us is going at this alone. In fact, we’re all in it together.
I’m still learning how to laugh at myself, how to be vulnerable, how to not take shit so seriously. I’m still learning how to love my body. I’m still learning how to talk to myself lovingly and how to communicate accurately with others. I’m still learning what it means to not be so damn hard on myself. And I’d love for you to come with me. Really, the more the merrier.
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Big Hearts, Big Hugs and Well Wishes for Your Adventure