Autumnal Insights


I am sitting at my computer on a Saturday afternoon in Prince Edward County, looking at a colourful wall of trees outside of the kitchen window of the house that my partner is currently renting. I am eager to write to you because yesterday I received a much-needed reminder that some might say was enlightening but it was much too familiar to me to have that sort of magic swirling around it.

After two weeks of a continual buildup of buzzing energy that has been gradually escalating inside of me, my inner state got so intense that I just couldn't contain it. I felt like I was about to burst but in my usual fashion, I just kept on going -until I broke.

What's all the buzz about?
In the past few weeks, some of the big life plans that I have been dreaming about for what feels like forever now, are finally on the horizon. No big deal. I promise to tell you about all of that stuff sometime soon. 

So, I should be nothing but excited and elated right?
Well yes...I am.

Can you feel the but coming?

Well, here is it...BUT excitement and thrill bring me right into my fear-body. It triggers old belief systems. It brings up old ghosts, particularly the ones that say if I really go for what I truly want out of life, the risk of failing is much greater. So, my fear of failure comes to haunt me, yet again. Wanna know what do when that happens?

Ok, I am going to quit the question-answer thing now. 

Some people freeze. They become complacent and lethargic, almost paralyzed. Does this resonate with you? I do the opposite. I put on my hyperproductive hat and I make a secret deal with myself to spend every waking minute that I possibly can (even during the times when I would usually be sleeping, resting, moving, meditating, or eating) to do anything and everything that I can to steer. clear. of. my truth (aka my fear). It's a secret deal because the part of me that knows that this hamster wheel is nothing but trouble isn't listening, that part gets hijacked. The part of me that feels afraid, very afraid, too afraid of what I can actually accomplish and who I am rightfully becoming, comes on strong and she just loves a good sprint on a hamster wheel for days on end -until the full collapse. I'm doing the opposite of resisting the goal, I am propelling headfirst toward it at a speed that is bound to eventually end with a crash.

The good news is that I know this cycle really well, enough to name it while it is happening. Awareness. Check. But that isn't enough. The better news is that I have spent the time to get to know this cycle intimately through my work and studies in Relational Somatic Psychotherapy. I know why it exists because I have spent many sessions with my therapy group and my teachers to figure it out and move through the many layers of it by confronting it dead on. I've gone head and body-first into fear and, despite my fear of fear itself, I have come out the other end held in safety with greater understanding and a much more diluted relationship to it. I feel this is key, but still not enough to get me off the wheel. The best news of all is that I have people in my life who know this part of me and the unhealthy tendencies that show up for me around "dealing" with it. They either learned about it through our shared group therapy sessions or because I felt safe enough to expose it to them.

I understand the value of being transparent when it feels safe. I believe it is key. I trust that my continued work in moving through fear allows for a much quicker turnaround (phew) and sometimes even a light chuckle after someone helps to pull me off the wheel in order to get my feet back on the ground. I have to thank my friend Lisa Mitchel for helping me out this time. She reminded me that I was only temporarily kidnapped by my ghosts and that I had all of the tools to get out. 

How timely of you ghosts, it is almost Halloween. 

I was too afraid to face my fear of failure so I turned up the dial to ensure I wouldn't have to face it. All the while my fear-body was intensifying nonetheless. When the mirror was held up to me I could see this special part of myself, remember why it exists, and what it costs me. At first, I crumbled in shame. Thankfully, Lisa reminded me that this part of me is my protector and that I am not alone. After our chat, I took a very long bath. I felt grief take over. I played soft music and did some therapeutic movement practices. I went for a Lomi Lomi Massage in Picton and as the incredible Brandy helped to melt away my tension, I felt my true-self coming back online. This fear is not mine. I sighed it away with every exhale. I am born to take great leaps, it is in my nature to push the boundaries. Go forth with ease Dear One.

I am beyond grateful for this life journey and the people who chose to be a part of it alongside me (there are too many to thank and you know who you are). I feel that the stronger I get, the clearer it is to me who my true cheerleaders are. The ability to stand up with authentic confidence also allows me to recognize the relationships and life choices that I have made in the past that don't fully support me in fulfilling my purpose. My rightful purpose. 

And just as I count my lucky stars for the people that stick around, I want to remind you that I am here for you. To remind you that your humanness is nothing but beautiful. To hopefully help you to feel safe and strong enough to move through your challenges and to unchain from your ghosts. We can do it together.

Lisa Messina