I’m grateful for the times in my life that have brought me to my knees. The time when I was so broke that I nearly lost my house and my car, because I was three months behind on all my bills. The time I was so depressed and tired of this world that I tried to take my own life. The months that grief rocked me to my core, to the point that my brain stopped working completely seven months later.
This isn’t a post about “the lessons and the gifts.”
There’s plenty out there about that.
This is a post about how sinking to the deepest depths, in the darkest corners of this life, allows us a greater capacity for light, love, passion, connection, and appreciation. How it allows us to see the world through a new lens… to relate from a new place… to see new possibilities in everything around us.
I’m not the person I was before my grief.
It’s one of the biggest change markers in my life.
But the me before is still familiar. Because there’s the days where I’m reminded that, oh right, everything’s different now. In big ways and small. In the way, I don’t have any desire to celebrate holidays. I’m physically unable to tolerate situations where I can’t express myself fully. The anxiety that riddles my body on random mornings as the sun begins to rise. The work that is birthing from deep inside my heart. The faces of friends that were once so close, and now so far.
And since the me before is still familiar, the differences still fresh and new, it makes me aware of things in a way I never could see before.
When we’re asked to face into the hard parts of life, we’re invited to see the world and everything in it from a new perspective.
We’re invited to grow into who we’re here to be and uncover the work we’re here to do. To step into what’s next for us, because we were never meant to get stagnant… never meant to stop growing and changing.
And we learn, that not only will we not die by facing into it… but we will find truth and peace and spirit just beyond the parts that hurt the most.
Not only can we survive… but we can truly thrive in ways we’ve never known. In ways that leave us in awe of this beautiful disaster called life.
Not only will we heal… but we’ll rise up from the ashes of our losses with more purpose and energy and focus than we ever had before.
Not only will we come back from it… but we’ll come back with such a deep sense of knowing who we are and what we want.
Not only will we stop feeling sad about the ones who walked away… but we’ll also know what true connection and love and support are from those that wander into our lives amidst the heartache and choose to stay.
Not only will we appreciate all that’s changed in us and our lives… but we’ll wonder how we ever found fulfillment in what we had before. Because life becomes so rich and deep and filled with love.
These chapters of my life taught me more than anything else ever could.
They taught me resilience, that I can walk through anything and be better for it. They taught me to appreciate what I have, no matter how little or imperfect. They taught me to fight for truth and connection and the kind of love that makes your heart stretch so far you think it might burst. They taught me not to settle for less than I desire and deserve… and that I, like everyone else, deserve to be happy and thriving and filled with joy and love and purpose.
They taught me more than I can name for you today.
And they will continue to teach me so much more than I may ever have the words for. They will never stop stretching me into the depths of the darkness, so that I may experience the light more fully and completely.
They gave me the capacity to live a truly beautiful life.
No matter what happens. No matter who hurts or leaves me.
When we can finally see that these parts of life are not meant to trap us inside a stuckness that gnaws slowly at our soul… then we can understand that they’re simply an invitation into something we can’t even comprehend in the moment. A doorway to something powerful and beautiful and all things amazing.
Stephenie Zamora is the founder of www.stepheniezamora.com, a full-service, life-purpose development, design and branding boutique and author of Awesome Life Tips. Through her Mastery program, she merges the worlds of personal development and branding to help men and women build passion-based lives and businesses they love. Her articles have been featured in The Huffington Post, Yahoo Shine, Positively Positive & Brian Tracy International. Click here to access her free Foundations for Unshakable Joy™ video training series and learn the unexpected trick to transforming your life with one single question! Connect with Stephenie on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter!
Image Courtesy of Molly Belle.