Let It Rise


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A few weeks ago I recorded a short podcast and wrote a blog where I spoke about what I was experiencing at that time. Raw, real, honest confession of the Isness I was in.

I titled it, let it burn.

Today I am sharing once again from an open tender heart, and this time the title will be,

Let It Rise.


Feb 16th I spoke from a space and place that I think we all find ourselves in from time to time. That upside down, inside out, raw and tender place. Where it feels like the ground you stood on, is no longer there. Where what was is no longer and you feel lost. Just think over last year and I’m sure you will find what I’m talking about. Basically the footnote for 2020 :)

I was going through a lot, especially in my relationship with my partner and I felt like my insides were on the outside. I felt alone and small like I was losing something…..

AND at the same time I felt that there was more of me wanting to emerge, but that my skin was wrapped too tight, like my armor was cutting into me as my insides began to expand.

A month later I feel I have emerged new. Washed clean from the waves that felt they would never end. I want to share a little of my journey in the hopes that it lifts your heart and reminds you that you are not alone.

And I want to say that I know I’ll be in that space again, maybe even later today I will feel that familiar wash of shame or that cold rise of fear in my belly, the waves will always be here, and that’s ok, it’s not about getting rid of the waves, it’s about remembering that I am the ocean.

I am reminded of the Leonard Cohen quote,

“If you don't become the ocean, you'll be seasick every day.”

For me, so much of this journey has been about coming into new relationship with the waves, the emotions, the thoughts, feelings, and sensations. I first set out to change them, to eradicate the ones I didn’t like and replace them with new shiny, whole, and healed versions, but what I came to find is that that too is just another way to abandon myself. And that what I am really longing for is my own love. To embrace the wholeness of me. And I can’t pick and choose that wholeness, it’s the dark and the light.

I know that there will be those times of liminal space, of death before the rebirth, that I will always be becoming. That’s nature, it’s natural, it’s wild, it’s life.

A month ago I asked the question.

When the rug gets pulled out from under you, a relationship ends, you lose someone, your life gets turned upside down……..how do you navigate it?

How do you let it burn and crumble so that new life can spring?

You slow down.

You tune in.

You feel it all.

You let it burn.

What does that mean? It sounds poetic but what does it actually mean? I want to break each of those down and speak from my heart, in the hopes that your heart hears it.

So the first one, slow down….

I and maybe you too can have the desire to rush the healing. It’s such a human thing to do, to desire to feel better.

AND I know from all the healing I have done that you can’t rush it, you just can’t.

When I move faster than the rhythm of nature I lose life.

To slow down when you are in a hard place can feel like your skin is on fire, like the last thing you want to do. And yet, when I meet myself right where I am and BE THERE for my experience often times I find more space. More room. Something softens, something shifts, something moves. Not always, sometimes it is not the time to sit in the fire. I have learned a lot in the past 3 years about surfing the edge of my window of tolerance, how to track my system and know the signs of overwhelm, of too much. It’s always an experiment. One that has to be infused with love, curiosity, and kindness. I think of it like alchemy, what kind of heat or flame is this unprocessed material being asked for?

It's not easy to slow down, and yet there is so much more life when I do. So what if the next time you felt the urge to push past what you were feeling, or to “get over it already” or to shift or move forward, instead you experimented with slowing down. With pausing, with letting yourself open and be with what is. What if you slowed down enough to let your body find its own natural organic unfolding? The body is wise, and we can learn to listen.

Something I found that is so linked to slowing down for me is trust. I move fast or distract myself or skim the surface because I don’t trust. I don’t trust me, I don’t trust my feelings, I don’t trust the world. And so to slow down is to trust, for me. So know that if you go to slow down and you are met with self-doubt and fear you are not alone.

And can you let that be ok too? Can you give space for that too? Can you welcome that energy and piece too?

The second was Tune In.

I learned very young how to disconnect, how to live outside my body where it was safer. We all find ways of leaving, of checking out, numbing out, tuning out. AND I found myself in a place a few years back where I made a choice to begin to tune in, to connect back to myself, because I was hit with the pain of all the unlived life I had accumulated, all of the missed moments, and unfelt feelings.

We also get really good and overriding our body, not trusting it, not tuning in. We trust the map of the mind, the stories we make up, and the outside messages we receive.

I spent a lifetime running from myself, and so learning to slow down and meet myself has been the most powerful tool I have strengthened.

To attune to what is actually true. To what is alive in my body right here right now.

To learn to tune in and hear that truth, speak that truth, live from that truth.

You can learn to attune to the wisdom of your body, to tune in and feel sensations and energy. You can learn that language.

The third one.......Feel It All

This can be the scariest one of all. We are all taught different ways to not feel. We learned as little ones to stop the wave of sensation and energy in our little bodies so that we could survive so that we could be loved so that we could be safe-ish.

As Glennon Doyle says though,

“What scares me more than feeling it all is missing it all.”

Me too.

She also says

“Life is alchemy and emotions are the fire that turns me to gold.”

These remind me that it’s brave to feel. It’s courageous to let yourself feel it all. When I resist my pain the suffering amplifies. It wraps me uptight and I become separate and alone. I lose myself in it.

When the resistance is gone, and I give myself permission to just feel I find myself.

When I allow myself to drop beneath the swirling stories and compelling narrative and I just feel the sensations, I just feel the waves, I just feel…..there is freedom.

There is freedom in feeling. There is reclamation.

The stories I tell myself say that this pain, these difficult emotions reflect my okness. They say, “See, I told you.” They weave long tails of loneliness and shoulda coulda woulda's. They tell me I have done life wrong. That I am not ok as I am.

But when I say yes, when I let the energy be just as it is, when I let myself feel, I remember that this piece is a part of me but it is not all of me.

I am the ocean, and this is a wave. And it is not sent here to destroy me, but rather to give me life. To bring me back home to a fuller version of myself. It’s giving me more of me.

And the last one.....Let It Burn.

I and maybe you too can hold on too tight to what was. I can get stuck in the past and in all the shoulds I could have done. When I let what is asking to be let go of free, I am making space for what is to come.

When I let the old life burn, and sit in the fire of my emotions I can be turned to gold.

When I surrender and meet myself in what is, I can reclaim, I can soften, I can rise new.

I can open to new life.

I can emerge with more of me.

Let the hurt burn.

Let the old beliefs burn.

Let the life that is not the life you truly desire burn.

Let it burn.

A month ago I said,

This very real raw and vulnerable place I am in feels like it is calling for something new. Like something is being asked to be birthed. That from this rawness there is space for new life to spring. And that it is only in letting myself be ground and crumble that my life can begin to blossom once again.

From that rawness new life has begun to bloom.

I have found a deep magical place inside of me that finally has the permission to come out and play.

She is young, playful, and expansive. She hid for a very long time. She didn’t trust that I could take care of her, she didn’t trust life. So when I began to give myself the grace to be in my experience and stopped pushing or rushing to heal, fix, shift, transform, transcend…there was enough space and time for her to emerge.

I listened to her. She said things like,

Slow down.

Be here.

Cry.

This cage you have built is too small to contain you.

You are wild.

You are free.

Take up space.

And even as I write this I can hear fear and shame scratching at the door, reminding me to not be too brave, not to get too big. They are there to shrink me, to try to keep me safe. It’s ok that they are there. I will be curious and compassionate. I won’t abandon myself. I will be here.

There are moments of time in my life where I feel a quickening, an awakening. Where I feel new life beginning to bloom. It happened in the rainforests of Costa Rica, the beaches of Mexico, in the woods in the middle of the Montana mountains.

As spring begins to melt the earth and warm the soil, I feel something stirring. The time for quiet inner reflection has begun to shift into a desire to step into the world, to connect, to be seen and heard. To feel felt.

I wake earlier, I feel the sunlight ignite my own radiance. I let it warm my heart, opening me, softening me.

These moment usually come after a storm in my life. Just as in nature when the rain stops and you can feel, smell, and taste new life. The watered soil can now grow.

And so my friend I ask you,

What are the cages you have created?

How have you tamed your wild heart?

What have you not let yourself feel?

What needs to burn?

It’s not always easy to step into that which we are being called into.

I know.

But it’s beautiful to watch a flower bloom that has been dormant all winter.

You thought it was gone, but she was here all along.

Waiting for you.

~Apen

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