We all struggle – until we don’t

Every day can start off being bright and shiny, but there’s no guarantee my experience will continue being as such throughout the day. As day goes by, there are so many different occurrences that can impact my mood and general energy levels.

I’m not that great in prolonged exposures in crowdy places. I can manage, for a while, but it takes a toll. My comfort zone is being around a hand-full of people in bright, open spaces, where nature dominates the place. I am still a weakling and I know my limits; I have not yet grown up to a more challenging environment without taking a hit and that’s ok. I know that I’m exactly where I am supposed to be, and that’s true for every single day in my life.  

For example, a few days ago I was traveling from Costa Rica to California. Everything was fine up to the point when I had to join the endless spiraling queue with hundreds of other people waiting to get through the US entrance/immigration process that is no longer fit for the 21st century. Many fellow passenger were anxious, not knowing if they will ever manage to catch their connecting flight. It was 1pm, my flight was scheduled to leave at 4:10pm. I was ok to start with, I was mainly being by myself, listening to Osho’s discourses – The Divine Melody – reminding me of the essence of life and the rest, passing by.

At the same time, I noticed the energy around me was very turbulent and the clock was showing 3:20pm when I got to the immigration officer, who was quite rude and accusatory by nature – as if I was some sort of an imposter who wants to immigrate to the US and steal his piece of pie. I really don’t know what’s that all about and why the US immigration officers treat people as if we were some sort of vermin. Might be just my experience, but it has happened so often and consistently that it’s going to appear as a miracle when I come across a kind officer – which I hope I do.

I quickly gathered my bearings and rushed off trying to find Terminal 6, gate 69A, which couldn’t have been placed further than it already was – right at the end of all terminals. Luckily Joe, who I’ve been travelling with managed to check in my baggage. I still had to go through another security check before I could board the plane. It was 3:45pm and I really didn’t want to miss the flight and get stuck in the LA. Even thought, later on I figured out there are plenty of planes flying out to San Francisco, so it wouldn’t be that much of a problem. However, being stressed out, in the thick of the rush, I couldn’t see or think clear. Rings a bell?

When I was about to join another security scanning queue, I noticed there was quite a strong-willed man next to me, who was intending to do the same thing, at the same time as me, only that I was faster. That seemed to have triggered something inside him; he had a strong reaction and that irritated him tremendously.

All that was on my mind was, ‘please God, help me catch this flight’, whereas he lashed fiercely at me and was deeply insulted for me pulling ahead of him. I apologized, said: “I’m really sorry, but I just need to catch my 4pm flight, I really didn’t want to upset you.” I told him: “please go ahead of me,” but he did not accept, he carried on with his energy attack, which by that moment had already reached its destination – ‘me’. He insisted that I go ahead of him, that his flight was only at 7pm and its ok, with a ‘not ok’ expression on his face. I didn’t want any more confrontations so I went ahead. At the same time, I could feel the irreversible damage – well, at least irreversible for the next 1h before I was able to recover and come back to my senses. I tried to get in touch with Joe, who was already on the plane. I wanted to let him know that I’m on the way – however, my phone connection failed, I couldn’t get through, which added to my anxiety.

As I came through the security check, I turned around, saw the man once again and said: “I am sorry for what has happened, I should have been more thoughtful.” In that moment something happened; it looked like as if the man finally realized that I meant no harm, he showed his remorse by wishing me to catch the plane on time.

I smiled and said to myself: “it’s ok, whatever has to happen, let it happen. Bring it on, life!” I can only do the best I can in every single passing moment and carry on. I picked up the speed and rushed towards the very end corner of Terminal 6 – gate 69A. It felt and appeared as if I was making my way through a labyrinth and I nearly lost my way. With a bit of help I reached my destination; I paused at the counter where I had to show my boarding ticket and I took several deep breaths to relax before I moved on. The hostess looked at me and said it’s ok, you made it on time.

I managed to get on the plane at 4:03pm, just on time for departure. Nevertheless, my heart beat went up sky high, along with my cortisol and stress levels which depleted the final few ounces of my energy reserves. All I wanted to do was to go home and cry. Before we took off, I noticed there were 2 more people who boarded after me, so it wasn’t all that bad. Still, I don’t want to be in this pickle again :).

I am not quite sure where the emotions come from, but the thought of “I want to go home” is something I resort to when I need to feel safe, sheltered, and nourished. In that moment I felt like a little vulnerable girl, exposed to intense emotions that felt too much for the little child to bear at that soft age.

I realized it was my childhood trauma that reemerged to the surface. There were too many events in my childhood that were simply too much and too heavy to cope with as I was growing up, and there was a lack, or often no help and support. I was mostly left on my own to deal with whatever happened. Nobody to notice, to protect, to give support when it was needed the most.

It all goes back to my first airport experience, which was quite traumatic. I was 15, going to Canada for 3 months over the summer school break. I had never been on the airplane before. My mum and my oldest brother dropped me off at the Munich airport; it took about 6h to get there, so they left as soon as they saw me check in.

I was left on my own, it felt exciting, yet a bit overwhelming. As soon as I stepped on the airplane the hostess checked my documents, passport, visa and she made a big deal about me traveling on my own – well rightly so. A child travelling on their own can easily cause suspicion, it has to be taken seriously to ensure everything is in order, after all, I was only 15.

I was trying to explain to the lady that I had to leave all supporting documents and my mother’s consent letter at the ambassy when I applied for the visa – I had no documents on me that would demonstrate the proof she was asking for She was insisting to see those documents, else I would have to leave the plane. The grueling went on; I was in tears, sobbing, trying to explain, to convince her that it’s ok, I am going to my aunt’s place who’ll be waiting for me at the Toronto Pearson airport, that I am safe. I was also trying to explain my parents had already left and I’d be stranded at the airport, which was even worse.

There was so much fear and anxiety going on, tensing my body, shriveling me up. Mind you, there were no mobile phones at that time, my mum and brother were on the way home, which meant I’d be stuck at Munich airport, no one to call, I had no idea how to speak German at that time, I wouldn’t be able to spend my summer on Niagara on the Lake, meet my aunts, my cousins, see my other brother, and I had no ideas how to get back home.

Pure fight and flight mode – totally shattered, I nearly had a meltdown, when by pure grace, somebody interfered. It must have been the captain who said it’s ok, you can go and take a seat.

In tears, flooded by emotions of fear, sadness, shock, relief – I finally assumed my seat. That first trip, has painted my experience of air traveling ever since, particularly towards destination I so desire to reach. It went so deeply, that I managed to manifest the repetition of various events that led to the same emotional state several times since.

The most recent flying experience made me look deep inside – it was time to feel and experience all those emotions once again – however this time with more awareness. Nevertheless, as we were driving back home, I was irritated, I felt as if I was hungry, but was not, I started behaving like a cranky, tantruming child.

All I could think of was “I want to go home; I need to feel safe”. At the same time, the thought was running through my mind – what home? Where is home? Where do I belong, where do I feel safe?

As soon as we reached home, I jumped out of the car, turned my face towards the trees, the setting sun, I started feeling the breeze, the summer heat, and I burst out in tears that would not stop flowing. It took an hour to calm down, explain to the little girl that it’s ok, that she’s safe, she’s loved, there’s no need to be afraid. I lied down on my back gazing towards the tree tops, the sky above, towards the golden rays of setting sun. Finally, I was at home – in my heart, I felt safe, supported by the ever holding ground. I could feel my nerves calming down.

And that my dear reader, that’s what it feels like when the heart starts opening up. The heart remains open for everything, not just the jolly stuff that nourishes and brings a smile to our faces – there is also anger, frustration, anxiety, and sadness that I myself haven’t dealt with yet completely, hence the residues that attract and invite the completion of my own healing. I invite them all; only sometimes, it can be really hard and it feels as if it takes every ounce of my energy to deal with the situation as it occurs, while I’m trying my best not to create new drama, so I can bounce back to my sweet spot as soon that’s over.

Though I know this too is an illusion – there is no such thing as ‘my energy’. It’s all a big game of the ego, a deeper layer of my personality that has some further unresolved issues. But I can’t jump to that layer yet, not until I haven’t resolved the previous one. Do you see what I mean?  

You have to deal with every single layer of your personality before you can move on to another. Else, things get more complicated and confusing, half here, half there, no layer thoroughly cleared anywhere. How can you progress is such case? You cannot and it can become even more sticky and frustrating if you don’t. You feel stuck – you can get stuck for a very long time and it’s not worth it.

Lesson for us all – situations like this occur in life to remind us of various areas we have to deal with, to heal, to look into, to reflect upon, and eventually come out clean on the other side. And then, another situation will occur to help us penetrate even deeper, to peel off all the layers of the onion that surround your true essence. The peeling off journey that takes you to the place – your forever home.

Once you reach the core, there is no occurrence or situation in life that will throw you off balance. It’s easy to know when you get there, because you remain there permanently – unshaken, solid, like a rock that’s been sitting on the ocean shore for a millennia or more – despite the endless count of waves bashing into it, 24/7, 365 days a year, year on year, and so on. When you reach that point in life, you just know it, there is no second through, there is no doubt.

Until we get there, it’s important for people close to us to know what’s going on with us internally, so they don’t feel there’s something wrong, or that it’s their fault, or something they might have done. It’s important to share, this way you can avoid many unnecessary stories, dramas, and new obstacles.

Remember – each of us is dealing with our own struggles the very best we can, we just need a bit of a support from time to time; a word of encouragement, a loving, kind, understanding heart, a touch of hand, a kiss, a hug, bit of love that has the power to uplift, to instill hope, to help us can carry on in life and never to give up.  

Thank you for your understanding and all your support, whoever You may be fortunate enough to offer it to. Your kindness has the power to reach us all who share this leg of the journey. We all receive your blessings, hence never underestimate the impact your kind thoughts, words, and action can have.

A kind, loving, genuine look, word, gesture that comes from your heart has an incredibly strong ripple effect that reverberates across the universe and never gets unnoticed. Thank you for that! 

May all be well.

Om

2 thoughts on “We all struggle – until we don’t

  1. It is so relatable, real and easy to apply in a day to day life. It takes a lot of good will to share little nuances openly for others benefit. Thank you Brigi.

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