Looking back with compassion
Published by Erik Talboom,
What a year 2019 has been already. I discovered an enormous amount of things about myself and about my behaviour of self-care and shaming. Without realising it, I was suffering from a depression. I know that now, I understand and I appreciate myself for taking better care of myself this year than the previous years.
I felt as if there was a shadow hanging over most things I was experiencing. There was a veil of darkness surrounding me and the people I loved almost continuously. And despite of the beautiful people I had around me, the years of coaching experience, the amount of books I read and all of those good things. I did not become aware of it. I believe I never wanted to allow myself to consider it. I was always busy, because that is what you are supposed to be. I looked for the next action to perform, the next thing to plan, always looking at the horizon for relief. If X happens, then I will be able to relax. Once I finish Y, then I can slow down. If only I can Z, then I will start feeling happier.
Most people knew we as the enthousiast, mister optimist one of my best friends used to call me. And I felt I had lost all of that. Not only that, it felt like I had no way to get it back. And oh boy did I try. I started yoga from time to time, integrated more meditation in my life. I even completely switched my eating habits. I have been eating Ketogenic for about 2 years now and that was certainly a wonderful discovery for me. My body truly appreciates me having this completely different nutritional lifestyle. It thanked me by loosing almost 30 kilos over the course of these 2 years. I cut down on work, on activities, and focused more on my music. Yet the shadow stayed. It was hard for me to really enjoy a moment deeply, no matter if it was a happy or a sad moment. To think back to one of my favourite bands and songs, I was feeling numb.
In no way do I want to blame any person in my life for doing this to me. That is not how I see life. I created this reality for myself, so I want to completely own it. Quite the opposite, I want to thank everyone around me, close and further away, for their contributions to my life. Some of my friends were shocked to hear about my decision to step out of my almost 10 year marriage. They felt guilty for not seeing my struggle earlier. I did not even realise my own struggle, and I was pretty good at masking it so I have been told.
Here we are now, October 2019, my first blogpost in months and I feel anxious. I realise that life is not about "when X happens, then I can be happy". I can be happy at any given time of day. And the best way for me is to feel all emotions. To truly let all my emotions surface, exist and fade away on their own accord. I don’t need to process them faster, get through them faster, put them aside to a more convenient moment, or simply run away from them and suppress them. This is scary, very scary sometimes. It feels like some pain will never go away again. And if that is the case, then I will find a way to integrate that.
I am sorry for all the chaos, pain and shock I created around me. Please forgive me for my absence, harsh words and actions. I love my life and all the people in it. Thank you for being in my life and for courageously dancing with your own demons.