shining a light on the complexities of being women with spirit

Posts tagged ‘headspace’

Post Natal Depression: Finding A Way Out Of The Darkness

Keyhole to sunlight

I’ve been off the air – but for good reason.  All of a sudden, I’ve become CRAZY BUSY!  Writing for PAY!!!   Fortunately it’s not been a tearing-my-hair-out-nutso-freakout kind of busy; more of a swimming, measured, holy-cow-I’m-amazed-it’s-finally-flowing kind of busy!   I have FINALLY found a way to break out of my shell and follow my heart, without setting off those internal sabotage alarms that have so frequently postponed my abundance in the past.

You see, I’ve been fighting sooo hard, for sooo long, trying to FORCE life to do things the way I wanted. Intellectually, I know that this does not work. I know that if you have to consistently bash your head against a wall to get something done, it’s probably not going to work in the long term.  But do you think I could make myself do something different?HELL NO!  I had to do it the hard way!

I wrote a book called “Head Space-Meditate Your Way to Study Success” – I LOVE this book – it’s my other baby. Writing this book took me out of a very, very dark space after the birth of my baby girl.  At 10 days old, her dad and I separated; messily, angrily, painfully.  My universe collapsed around me and the last shred of self worth I had been desperately clinging to was obliterated.  It has taken years to rebuild my reality from that destruction.  I had a debilitating case of Post Natal Depression (PND) – or perhaps it should be called Post Natal DEMOLITION – who I was, what I was, where I was going, where I’d been – the entire thing was wiped from the face of the earth.  I had to start again from scratch. I was thrust out into a foreign world with no yardstick,  no anchor, no way to know how to move forward.  So for a while I didn’t.  I froze.  And I fell apart.

But you know what?  There is always an ‘upside to the upside down’.  There has to be.  This was the only thing that kept me alive – that, and the knowledge that my children had no one else.  If I didn’t stay alive, who would raise them?

Then one night, in the background of my inner torment and terror,  I heard it.  Somewhere in the depths of my total annihilation there was a tiny, calm and soothing voice.  It belonged to an infinitesimal spark of light.  I barely noticed it among the chaos of the white noise in my head.  It whispered softly “Write. Just Write“.

It took a year of  writing to finish the first draft; screaming babies, no sleep, mashed pumpkin smeared through my hair, breakdowns, breakthroughs, nurses, doctors and psychologists for me to crawl out of the darkness and back to a place where I could see there was a light.  From there, I took a lurching approach to life, clawing my way up a very slippery slope to relative sanity and a loosely hung-together semblance of reality.  I had glimpses of happiness and purposeful direction that kept me going, but for years I struggled on most days.

I extracted all my superannuation from the government under financial hardship and published 1500 copies of the book.  I estimated that I could triple my investment and we’d be on our way. For 3 hard and long years, I pushed on, and we struggled financially. I’m tenacious, if nothing else, so I just kept going.  I marketed, I networked, I promoted, I lectured and still was not able to pay the ever mounting bills.  I had to move us to a very tiny house, visit the salvos for gifts of warm clothes in winter, and there were too many days that kids ate and I went without.

I thought writing Head Space was going to be the saviour that my little family needed.  I knew in my heart that the  book’s content was great.  I thought if I could just publish it all our financial problems, both present and future, would be solved.   I was SO WRONG and SO RIGHT. I guess I misinterpreted the quiet voice inside.   I was so convinced that I would make bucket loads of money and be ‘saved’. For the life of me I could not understand why the business side of my book didn’t take off.

This book is fantastic, life-changing and completely useful and helpful in so many ways.  So, I just couldn’t comprehend why it wasn’t saving us. BUT IT WAS… I just couldn’t see it.  As it turns out, the saviour was the process of writing;  meditation, acceptance of anger, sadness and grief, self-searching and discovery of strengths I never knew existed, heightened resourcefulness, a growing resilience, dedication to my children, and a determination to pull myself out of my very deep, dark hole.

Eventually, those years of hell brought me to a place of surrender – not to defeat (I never say die!) – but to being utterly and truly ME.  Without all that strife and struggle, I would not be so completely certain of who I am and what I’m capable of.

In the last 6 months, I have come of age.  I finally GET IT.  And the abundance is flowing.  What happened? What changed?  Well, the things I have known and thought might be true on a head level for around 20 years have suddenly integrated into my being.  I knew that Head Space would save us, I just couldn’t see how until now.  Something just clicked inside and I realise that the whole time I had been redefining ME from the ground up.

It’s easy in hindsight.  I really just needed to slow down, enjoy life, be focused and deliberate about my career without being dogged, and write because I LOVE TO WRITE.  More that that, if I write about things I love, abundance flows.  Now, I follow my heart and my intuition and simply use my mind as a tool to direct my energy.

I write this today because I have just had my first paid article published.  I am SOOO grateful for post natal depression. There were moments when I thought I wouldn’t survive, or that my children wouldn’t.  But it has been a blessing in disguise.  I am so deeply humbled by the workings of the universe and for all the struggles.  Now I can write from a place of love because I know and understand that the depths of pain I’ve experienced are the perfect indicator of the capacity of my heart to love and enjoy an abundant life.  I can now write what I love to write and be paid to help others by educating, enlightening and easing their suffering through the written word.

love post natal depression

What a privilege.

What perfection.

When have you discovered inner strength from adversity?

xxK

PS:  I started this post to tell you about the article I’ve had published, but got sidetracked in a bit of a gratitude rant! The content is nothing mind-blowing, but as you can see, it’s worth a great deal more than the money to me  Here’s the LINK to my recently published article.

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SHUT UP! I’m Busy Here.

Stressed woman screaming

Breathe in, breathe out, breathe in, breathe out…

That’s it. That’s all there is to it.

Simple, right?

I have deadlines.  Lots of them.  Don’t get me wrong, I love a good deadline – it keeps the creative juices going for me, keeps me on my toes.  I get that ‘edge’ that helps me stay sharp and makes me feel alive.

But when you’re on the edge like that; for days, weeks, months… fatigue happens.  Life is good right now.  Everything is pretty much peachy.  But today, I’m weary.  My heart is crying out for attention, my soul starved for substance.  I’m not yet bone achingly wrung out, but a couple of weeks in my ‘sickbed’ is on the horizon if I don’t stop very, very soon.  I can recognise this state now. I used to push through it and hit the proverbial brick wall for months in order to fulfill my perceived responsibilities to others. Not anymore.  It’s not worth the pain.

So… with my internal ‘To Do’ list blinking URGENT in neon before me, and my brain’s ranting, panicked voice in the background, I deliberately slow myself down enough to grab a coffee from the local café. I didn’t sit down long enough to drink it though. Oh no!  My brain won’t let me slow down that much just yet. It still holds the upper hand. But I’m onto it. I’ve noticed it’s rushing me.  Now it can’t hide.  It’s just a matter of time.  I know how to get around that little voice that pushes me ever onwards, striving to rush yelling at me to “get it all done now”, and “don’t you dare stop for a moment of solitude and silence”.  Today, I’m onto it, that kind of talk is just not on! Today, I want off the edge.

I gratefully receive my take-a-way caramel latte, half -shot caramel because sugar makes me more hyper. My brain thinks coffee is God, so it’s cool with proceedings so far, thinking it’s got me by the horns. I walk towards the pulsing markets. “Oh!  More rushing and activity. Goodie” my brain prattles at me. It knows it can hide its agenda and its relentless voice amidst the noise and bustle.  I have to go through that teeming sea of people to get back to my car. But instead of pushing and forcing my way through the hubbub with purpose and urgent determination to get back to work as my brain would have it, I purposefully change my pace to a cruising amble and veer suddenly towards the park.  I can go that way too. My brain resists “What are you doing?  This way is longer. You’ll be late. This is out of the way, much less efficient use of your time and energy here, you idiot”.  My rebellious nature kicks in and I ignore it, slowing even more.

In the park, excellent. Now I’ve got the upper hand.  Nature will do that. Nature is always on our side and always wins eventually.  I glance up at the blue sky through the canopy, the first sunlight in days dapples warmth on my face and I let a quiet smile reach my lips. “AGGGHH, she’s enjoying this” screams my brain. “Someone stop her, I’m losing control here people”. I wonder who its talking to?

Then, in total defiance of my internal pressures and self-imposed deadline to get home by 10am, I hesitate. My strolling comes to a dead stop, just for a moment. I break into a grin and winningly say to my freaking brain “SHUT UP! I’m busy here.

And it does.

All it takes is that one moment.  I only need a moment to smell the damp earth beneath my feet, drink in the sight of verdant, luminous grass, immerse myself in the music of a hundred different birds.  In that moment, I find my peace, replenish my energy stores and hit the refresh button.  There is silence there, once my brain knows its place.  It just needs to know I’m in charge.

“Shut up.” I repeat more kindly this time, “I’m busy here. Rest now. It’s all okay. Shhh”.

Awareness fills the silence.

Breathe in, breathe out, breathe in, breathe out.

Simple.

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Published Works

Published Works.

Still getting the hang of wordpress… not sure how to add a new page but I think I’ve succeeded in adding my published stuff…  Helps to be able to concentrate, but I’ve had my two kids home sick today so that just wasn’t going to happen!  If I’ve stuffed it up, please let me know!  If not, check out my newly posted Published Works!

🙂

xxk

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