My mind cannot recall the memories. But my skin does.
My body holds each experience like collected treasures from so many lifetimes ago.
The lines and crevices in my hands speak of stories. I cannot remember how they began. I have no idea where they will end. I only know that I am them and they are me.
It is these stories which I know I must honor. These truths which I must bear witness to.
I am an ancient spirit in a modern world. These are the lessons I have learned:
1. Discarded dreams will haunt your heart.
The price of discarding a truly longed-for dream will always be higher than the cost of pursuing it.
Dream the impossible and the improbable. Carve out a space where these dreams flow free. Where they are not stifled or struck down by hearts which cannot hold them.
Do not apply rationale or reason to them. Let them float higher and wider than the binds that seek to keep them captive.
You will be asked to explain these dreams. You will be asked to suck the soul from them, and turn them into something acceptable for The World.
Defend them, but do not ever dilute them.
2. Your self expression is your strongest weapon.
You will lose count of the times that you are asked to conform, the ways in which you are told to comply. Your self expression is the shield you will use to deflect every Must, Should and Can’t that will be thrown at you.
Find your voice and hold it steady as you express your truths and desires. Pour yourself into creativity, and find your freedom through each sacred offering.
3. Grief is not the enemy, refusal to feel it is.
You will know losses that will bring you to your knees. You will need to be brave. Braver than you ever knew you could be.
Scream when you need to. Howl. Cry in the night. Let your anguish loose without shame or fear. You need not explain your grief, but you must honor it.
Let your losses fill you. Don’t let grief strip you away piece by piece. Let its depths reach into you until your fingertips can feel every missing memory. Everything you think you are now without is still held within.
Know that no true love ever leaves. Time and space are mere illusions.
4. Support is not the same as validation.
Having a circle of supportive, loving hearts around you will be the soul balm that helps ease life’s jagged edges. But those hearts are not here to validate yours.
Validation of who you are can only come from you. Seeking approval from external sources is not part of your path home.
Give support with love. Accept support with grace. But let your own beautiful heart be the map that guides you.
5. Your liberty lies in your own powerful hands.
Look at your hands often. Study their beauty. See their strength. Know that you hold so much power in your palms, so much potential in your fingers. With these gifts, you have the ability to feel, to touch, to create.
Your hands hold your history. They also hold opportunity. Don’t clench your fists so tightly with the past that you forget how wonderful it is to unfurl your fingers and catch all the new joy that wants to flow your way.
6. Beware of becoming ensnared in the comparison trap.
Do not compare yourself to others. The stars have no jealousy of the sun. They want not for a golden hue when they know the worth of their own glittering silvery joy.
Your journey is yours. Their journey is theirs. Sometimes paths intertwine and beautiful things happen. Sometimes paths stay separate. Don’t let envy of others eat away at you.
Enjoy your own spectacular scenery. Soak it all in.
7. Don’t apologize for your gifts.
The World will tell you to shine your light, and then it will scream that you are too bright. The World will tell you to reach higher, and then it will roar that you are flying too high.
Too brave. Too brazen. Too beautiful.
Too wise. Too wild. Too wonderful.
Say No to that world. Decline an existence that will see you stuck in little boxes and cramped pigeonholes. Playing small does not benefit you, nor does it add any value to the lives of others.
Use your gifts wisely, use them well, but do not box them up and hide them.
8. The cure is always in the cause.
You will try to conceal and camouflage the hurts that ail you. You will try to run from everything that you cannot stand to sit with. But your feet can never go fast enough to escape each inner truth that wants to be witnessed.
The peace you are seeking can be found at the root of the rupture. Be gentle with yourself as you explore each Why. Hold space for yourself as you examine each How.
Go to the edges of who you are. Take the tumble into who you are yet to be. Remember that every fragment finds its way back.
Yours is a heart that is worthy of love, most especially your own. There will be many worlds to walk. Be sure to hold true to who you are in every corner of each one.
Skylar Liberty Rose is a writer and the creator of online series The Great Remembering: Tracing a Map Back to You. Having found her own freedom by releasing limiting beliefs, Skylar seeks to provide others with life changing tools they can use to empower themselves. Chosen as one of the ‘Best 50 Women’s Empowerment Blogs’ by the Institute for the Psychology of Eating and ‘Top 101 Most Inspiring Blogs’ by Guided Mind, Skylar is passionate about stripping away layers of conditioning and instead discovering the unique truth within. She was a speaker at the Global Social Change Summit 2017 as organized by the Global Institute for Extraordinary Women.
Image courtesy of Leon Cato.