How to Redefine Love This Valentine’s Day: 14 Gestures of Love by Monica Wilcox


14 gestures of love challenge 2

Note from Kim: 

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Valentine’s Day, Shmalentine’s Day! This has been my motto for as long as I can remember. The only way I truly enjoy this day of love is with my children, watching them prepare 20 to 30 Valentine’s to give to the class, baking heart cookies, eating cinnamon hearts, cutting out hearts and giving them a box of chocolate. Continue reading

Spring Of Life


Until you’ve found pain, you won’t reach the cure
Until you’ve given up life, you won’t unite with the supreme soul
Until you’ve found fire inside yourself, like the Friend,
You won’t reach the spring of life.
Rumi ♥

 

When I first wrote about my depression, in Let The Truth Be Known I Suffer from Depression (1st in a series of 4),  I opened the doors to my soul.  Laying out my experience for everyone and out into the Universe, brought me closer to you my friends and my readers, consequently, it also brought me closer to myself.  I discovered I am not alone suffering in the darkness, and happily so, I had hands to hold along the way.  I even made new connections and built new relationships with those who are or were in the dark too.

This was in January.  Today, after almost 5 months in therapy, and 3 months on medication,  I am actually starting to feel my two feet on the ground again, and the feeling is amazing!  I have made many changes and created a life of quiet. YES! I am a hermit (for now) however, think of it this way, I went from a lifetime of self-hate to entering a new life of self-love.  I want to bask in it, smell it, live it and breathe it! 

I spoke last week about, “taking out the garbage” and wanting to create more loving and meaningful relationships.  This task starts with creating a loving relationship with myself.  So, keeping this in mind, I had to separate myself physically from the world (in a sense) in order to commune with me and with God.  I know I am not separate in spirit.  My spirit is connected with all of you and with the source, so technically, at that time I was connected, just not in ways others think I should.  

Forget what everyone else thinks and live your marvelous life!!!

Creating a loving bond with the person I am allows me to feel true love, the love I have been longing for almost ALL my life, because truthfully I am love.  Love isn’t something to long for, love is something inside each and every one of us.

Hate separates!

The self-hate probably started around 12 or 13, when I thought everyone else abandoned me.  

As the years went by, what I did was abandon myself.  I gained and lost weight, I entered into abusive relationships, I even tried drugs (that didn’t work THANK GOD!!) I gave up everything I loved and adored doing.. my dreams went down the drain.  I was literally living according to the expectations of everyone else and I constantly felt OBLIGATED!  I started looking on the outside for things no one could really give to me.  I fell in love with the potential of love, and this left me empty and scared.

When enough is enough!

When I was at the deepest point of my depression, I felt like I was in a deep dark well.  It was cold, its was terrifying, and I felt like I was drowning in gunk. I prayed for someone to come find me and take me away from what I had, in reality, created all by myself.   Then, the water started freezing my skin, and rose up to my neck,  that is when I looked up and saw a tiny little light up above me.  It was not a person shining a flash light, no rescue worker coming my way, it was your light and it was my light.   The light of everyone who cheered me on during that dark time, I finally grasped onto it and up out of the well I went.  Your light and love, became my light and love.  The meds became the bridge which helped my feet stand on the ground.  

I believe!

They say when you heal on the inside, it starts showing up on the outside.  This, I discovered this week to be so true!  My home is less cluttered, my plants are doing GREAT!, and I can finally look at myself in the mirror again and smile.  I went out last week to get purple streaks in my hair, along with a much needed hair cut, and now I cannot stop looking at myself in the mirror.. I feel pretty again.  I bought myself some new clothes, and just yesterday, I refilled my makeup bag!

Playing spring chicken!

The thing is, I didn’t do all this to attract a new mate in my life.. (which in fact is what the old me would have done) I did all this for me.  This is the difference and I feel it.

I feel in the flow, the Universe is providing me with everything I need, and when this happens, I KNOW I am on the right path.  If I was having tons of difficulties right now, I would be asking myself:  How am I creating this?  So.. when doubts arise like yesterday (yep I started doubting my path) I remind myself of the old “self-sabotaging” me who likes to tease like a jester.  

And.. like last week’s garbage, I told it to EFF off too!  

My feet are on the ground.  I’m dancing.. and singing.. and laughing, and enjoying this little heaven right here and right now!

Rocks Rock my World


A pile of rocks ceases to be a rock when somebody contemplates it with the idea of a cathedral in mind.” Antoine de Saint-Exupery


I love rocks!  Big rocks, little rocks, pebbles, gems and crystals.  As I was cleaning out my candle holder (it is full of rocks) I started playing with them in my hands.  They felt cold, and smooth to the touch.  I like the clanking sound they make as I let them drop back into the glass bowl.

Then I asked myself.  Where does this love for rocks come from?  Looking back, way back, I used to spend lots of time in Saint-Adolphe d’Howard and Magog.  My grandfather and aunt owned cottages in those towns, and I spent much time on their lakefront beach.

I remember gathering rocks into piles.  However, before I would choose which rock would go into my pile, I specifically remember inspecting each rock really closely. I would wonder how God made them, because, rocks are hard, and each of them very different.  I loved the see through ones, I thought they were diamonds.

“Mom mom.. Look I found a diamond!!” I would eagerly cry as I ran to show her.

When I found a pink rock magic would fill my soul.  Then some looked like they had gold in them.  Did I find a treasure?

I was attracted to rocks so much as a child that I even tried to sell them.  Yep, when I got home from the cottage one year, I took out my most treasured rocks and set out to sell them door to door.  Making money, around the age of 7 or 8, was such a pleasure.  I set out with my little bag, knock on the door, and believe I had something important I had to share with these people.  MY ROCKS!!  I did sell a few, probably because the people who bought them thought I was cute.. Mostly, though, the adults would laugh and politely say no thank you.

I went home that day with most of my rocks, yet I was so excited that one or two adults saw the love I had for these mysterious creations of God.  With 50 cents in hand, I went out and bought lots of candy!

My love for rocks still exists.  I always keep enough to play with in my home, and use some to decorate my candle holders.  They are a reminder strength, and endurance. I just bought myself a necklace with rocks in it!   Rocks stand the test of time, and most important, that one grain of sand among thousands that makes up one rock, may have lived a million years ago… you never know!

There are many rocks and crystals with healing powers, I know, but these simple rocks and my love for these pebbles, heal me in ways I could have never imagined, and I am grateful for them.

What symbolism do you put on rocks?  What comes to mind when you think of them?

Flying Solo


Did I ever tell you I was broken?  Yep, I kept myself that way so you can love me.  I didn’t know any other way for you to even look at me.  So if I remained out-of-order, you would come to my rescue.  I was the bird with a broken wing.  Never really flying very far, like a fish in its fishbowl, I was comfortable in my surroundings.  I thought to myself, with my birdlike wisdom, my wing could never heal because if it healed, that meant I had to fly on my own.

Flying on my own!! That is the scariest thing imaginable.  I would have to jump off a branch and trust that the wind would take me and my wings would work.  Flapping them, would mean trusting myself that I can do it.. and the last time I did, I fell, and broke my beak.  Things went downhill from there.

Then one day, while watching all my bird friends, fly around.  I was getting quite jealous just sitting out on my perch.  I was observing how much fun they were having, and how many worms they were catching.  Obviously it was challenging for me with my  sore wing to get worms so early.  I was hungry, I was lonely and I decided I was worthless.

You haven’t seen a tree until you’ve seen its shadow from the sky.  ~Amelia Earhart

The other birds felt bad, and sometimes they would come and share their bounty with me, yet, a few birds, the ones that hang out on the wire would sing behind my back.  They often had weddings there, and I was never invited.  I heard them talk about me saying how lazy I was, that if I just worked harder at fixing myself I could have a better life.  This is when I started believing I needed to be put back together.  However, who would do that?

I also had my friends, the blue birds, they would always cheer me on and tell me that everything is going to be alright.  They complemented me on my style, and how they loved the single purple feather which lined my wings.  They told me to believe in myself, that sooner or later I would fly just like them.

As much as they loved me, I often never received their love with open arms.  I thought it would be easier to lay low in my nest, hoping for a visit once and awhile.

K. Shreesh Then one day, my wing hurt so bad, I went to scoop up a juicy worm,  and I fell 10 feet below heading towards my death.  I couldn’t get the nerve to flap my wings, and started to let myself fall.  Then, low  and behold a raven swooped by and picked me up.  He told me he saw me falling from miles away and couldn’t let such a beautiful bird die.  That’s when I turned to him and said:  Can you help me?  Can you teach me how to fly like you do?

He complied right away, and we started flying lessons the next day.  As the days grew longer and the nights grew warmer, I felt my strength come back.  I felt like a hawk!  Ready to face the air!  Ready to swoop over huge mountains.

The birds around me started flocking my way.  I finally was invited on the electrical wire to the morning dove’s wedding.  How wonderful.

Then it hit me, I was never EVER broken.. I was always whole.  I just needed to listen to myself, to my teachers, and to my birdly instincts all along.  And KNOW that the Universe is always there, guiding me and supporting me every single beat of my wings!

I can fly
I can fly
I can fly

Inhabiting Myself


I wrote this awhile back for another blog, however, due to unforseen circumstances, it never got published.  So today, since I was experiencing technical difficulties, I decided to post this short story.

 

 

 

I think of life itself now as a wonderful play that I’ve written for myself, and so my purpose is to have the utmost fun playing my part.  ~Shirley MacLaine

I can’t believe I shut her up all this time!  I kept her well hidden, locked downstairs in the soberness of the basement.  I went down only to give her the remnants of food leftover from my fridge, and a slim glass of water… other days I would stuff her with food until she would almost get sick!! She HAD to eat, she HAD to stay fat.  That way no one but no one would want to love her.

There were days I would let her out for short periods of time.. this would enable her to see the light and smell the air, just enough so she could survive.  However, she would begin to enjoy the outdoors and she would start smiling and playing.  Amusement was strictly forbidden in this place… she knew that, she would try to smile while I wasn’t looking but I would always catch her!  When I did… Punishment was in order!

“Hey! You!  Ugly!!!! …You think you are pretty when you smile?” I would yell at her.

She would look at me with her eyes so dark.. they were begging me to let her stay but she belonged back where she came from:  In the darkness.

In recent years,  I decided to keep her downstairs for longer periods of time… I would only let her out when I thought she was about to die.  I couldn’t have her death on my conscience, that would be the end for both of us.  I cannot exist without her… I can’t.

One day, when I came to grab her arm to bring her downstairs, she managed to gather enough strength to push me back!  This woman, who didn’t have much energy, managed to run away from me and disappear around the bend.  I was too tired to run after her…. I let her go.

I sat there crying until nightfall set inside my mind.  I realized how much I needed her.. without her.. I didn’t exist.

A few months later she came to visit me, and this time I had no urge to lock her up.  I must admit she looked beautiful.  Her smile was a mile wide, and her glow!! That glow!  I could not stop looking at her…she was mesmerizing.

This woman, who I locked up for years, started to cry. She looked at me directly in the eyes while huge tears streamed down her face.

“You, my dear” She said  “are an egotistical, narcissistic abuser!!”

I couldn’t deny what she was telling me is true.  I didn’t treat this girl with love, compassion or tenderness.  I often forgot to nurture her, and I never embraced her dreams.   She, was nothing to me.. NOTHING!

She looked at me, after she calmed down and said:  “Forgive me? Please forgive me?”  Forgive me for not loving you… for hating you.. for despising you”

I replied “I should be the one asking for forgiveness”

She said “I am you”

And so she was… and so I am.. We embraced each other….

We are no longer rivals .. we are one!

I inhabited myself!

The dark became light, the world became bright.. My creativity soared… I started seeing things in ways I have never perceived them before.  I drew, I wrote, I sang and danced.  I created, I laughed, I cried.  I listened more, loved more and played more.  I joked more, decorated more and everything I would receive would be AWESOME!  I ate better, walked more, and just accepted that this person does not need to be buried.. she exists.. We both exist in  light and in dark need to combine our hearts and give the world the best that we can give.

And so she changed the world… one dream at a time..

Go with the flow


Do not be too timid and squeamish about your actions.  All life is an experiment.  The more experiments you make the better.  What if they are a little course, and you may get your coat soiled or torn?  What if you do fail, and get fairly rolled in the dirt once or twice.  Up again, you shall never be so afraid of a tumble.  ~Ralph Waldo Emerson


Last week I posted: Depression hits. Now What? = Love Yourself! I discuss the importance of self-love and the ability to treat and love yourself like you would a child or your best friend. This week I want share some of the strategies which help me with coping with certain fears, thus, often removing the feeling of overwhelm when I begin a new task.  Overwhelm, really makes everything bigger in perspective, so I need to break down tasks into smaller steps.

Dealing with depression and anxiety has been a challenge and a huge awakening at the same time. (see:  Let The Truth Be Known:  I Suffer from Depression) I realize, after some great reflection that depression, anxiety and panic have been part of my life since my early 20’s, maybe even earlier (according to my therapist) However, with this latest onset, I have discovered self-loving ways to overcome some of the challenges I face. These self-loving ways are things I didn’t do in past recoveries.. I mean yes, I started, however, I never took them as serious as I do now. There is the little voice inside of me (which I call my higher self) which guides me through. This “voice” is beginning to replace the “negative voice” which ruled my life for 20 years. These following strategies helped me “unlearn” the old and experience new and loving ways to be gentle with myself.

The two (2) things I needed to work on (huge mountains) were: 1. Self-care (Taking care of my body and showering) and 2. Going out / socializing. These 2 things, if I didn’t pay attention to them, could send me into a deep downward spiral. Think about it.. Looking yucky would lead to more self-hate, and not seeking support or running errands would lead me to feel alone and my kids wouldn’t have food to eat. So, during my treatment, these two areas of my life need to have some sort of plan. A flexible plan.. but a plan.

Remember, if you’re headed in the wrong direction, God allows U-turns!  ~Allison Gappa Bottke

Plans help me shape my world. I for one, was never really good a making plans and sticking to them. Even with the post today, I had a plan to find some terrific article to back up my post, however, I cannot find a single thing which I find “inspiring”. Being too rigid does not work either. “Go with the flow within guidelines” is my new motto! If I were to stick strictly to adding “facts” from an outside source, it just wouldn’t work. This gives me some control over certain situations and help me feel safe. Just like one would devise an “escape plan” in case of fire, I devise an escape plan in certain situations. Take going out for example:

Lets say I must take a bus to go to an appointment. Taking the bus is quite scary, because this means I am going to be far away from “home base”. Home base, is my safe zone. So I usually devise a plan before I leave giving me a 100% right to change my mind at any time. Meaning, I give myself permission to return to home base.

The first thing I do is to make sure I have my cell phone on me. Then, I stash a $20.00 in my purse. This allows me to take a taxi home if ever panic really strikes. Then as I walk out of the house… I talk to myself. I give myself support throughout the journey. Last week, I had to do this and I told myself I had permission to get off at every stop. This permission allowed me to go all the way!! Get it! When I know I have a choice.. it eases my anxiety.

Choices, we all have. Giving ourselves the right to choose differently allows for freedom. So in the end, I always end up where I wanted to go, or do what I planned to do, because I had a choice! I didn’t feel like I was choking on “I must” or “I have to”.. I felt alleviated with “I can, but I can change my mind at any time”…

As for taking a shower, I now get in the bath! I prepare everything around me. I may even break out a few candles and some bubble bath. I wash my hair with clean water from the tap and rince. Giving myself this “motherly” love is exactly what I need!

You can Google “Anxiety busters” or Depression Strategies to find tons of strategies which will work for you.

Yet, the message here is. Give yourself choices. In most instances, you’ll stick to the plan. However, if one day you don’t, that is ok too.. since it is part of trusting yourself, you can take yourself back home. Just like a mom who promises her child she will pick him/her up right after the first day of school, keep those promises to yourself too! I know I did, and it makes things easier.

Its going out and taking a shower still difficult for me; OH YES! However, now that I have “escape plans” and “mothering techniques” these tasks are much more manageable..and will get even more manageable as my recovery continues.

Keep on moving and smile!

 

 

Crossing paths


The minute I heard my first love story I started looking for you, not knowing how blind that was. Lovers don’t finally meet somewhere. They’re in each other all along. -Rumi

This week I asked if any of you have experienced a visitation in any of your dreams.  (If you haven’t taken the poll yet, please go here.)  In the dream below, I truly believe the dreamer was able to access the energy of her good friend.  What do you think?  

The Dream

My dream last night was very strange. I dreamt that I was hanging out with a guy I have not seen in at least 10 years. He is about 6 years older than me. We met such a long time ago when I was 9. (I’m now 37). It was a short dream – we were laughing and talking and goofing around. He grabbed my ankle/foot and said something like “wow, you must be an athlete!!” (perhaps referring to my disproportionately skinny ankles). I laughed and said “not even close, but I hope to be an athlete someday.” We were then suddenly sitting in the backseat of a car and he was lying down with his head in my lap and I was playing with his hair like we were the closest friends. My mother was sitting next to us and smiled. That was pretty much it. I woke up missing him terribly and wishing we were still in touch.

Some background:

– I have been overweight since about the sixth grade and was the victim of bullying for several years. I am trying to change my mindset and get healthier/lose weight.

– The guy I dreamt about: his name is Dan – we met at church and were not very close – mostly because he was so much older. I always admired him and enjoyed his company very much, and thought of him as the older brother I never had. He was a prankster and liked to annoy me, but had a heart of gold and I knew he cared about me. I haven’t seen him since his wedding several years ago. Honestly, I didn’t realize I had a huge crush on him until at the end of his wedding when he and his wife were dancing – it hit me like a ton of bricks that I was devastated we were not together. This reaction completely shocked me and I was severely depressed for days. I still don’t know if I was really “in love” or just had a crush – or if my feelings were associated with my nostalgia dating back to when we first met at church (see below).

– the church we met at: a huge issue and theme of my life – it was a very strict, conservative, “born again” Christian church – we attended both the church and the associated school for about 2 years. It was cult-like and the pastor/leadership was very hypocritical. It was very traumatic and played a large part in shaping my life.

“When you connect with someone so deeply there is a chance they may come to cross your path again… even in your dreams.” Kim Larocque

The Interpretation

It seems this “guy” is a part of you.. He represents the aspect of you who can keep you company and give you comfort. We all can be co-dependant at times, and enjoying our OWN company can be a difficult task.. however when we do reach the point of being able to comfort ourselves and give ourselves “self-love” we are on a path of enlightenment. Since you are losing weight and changing things in your life.. It seems that you can reach this encouragement within yourself.. by using this energy of “the guy”.

Dreaming about him grabbing your ankle may mean… you are trying to “grab” a sense of direction in your life.. Ankles keep our legs and feet attached and give us flexibility to walk! So it could also mean.. “Standing on your own two feet”.

What have you been feeling lately about your life now? That is a question I would ask myself.

“You must be an athlete”! Are you working harder at exercising lately? Are you proud of your accomplishments? You do have hopes that you acknowledge in your dream.

Being in the backseat of a moving car with the guy in your lap.. seems like such a loving time.. Like you are taking care of no one else but each other, and letting life take you for a ride.. It sounds like surrender to me. Letting go.. Maybe letting go of the pain you suffered together at the church/cult. Letting go of the past.. letting yourself ride the journey of life so that you can move forward.

The fact that your mother was there smiling …. Seems to me that there is complete approval.. It’s ok to do what you are doing.. Your mom represents that parental side of you. The fact that she was smiling leads me to believe that you are ready to let go.. that its ok.. that there is unconditional love there for you.

Side note: I was doing research about twin souls they are also called Divine Compliment.  I think you both may be able to call on each other in your dreams when you need a dose of unconditional love.

Testimonial

Hi Kim! This analysis blows me away. So much of this resonates with me. The idea that he showed up in my dream to comfort me is so, well, comforting! I had a Reiki session on Saturday-although they are usually very peaceful and relaxing, I experienced a lot of anxiety and actually had a panic attack. I think my experience with this church was the start of my anxiety disorder. It is possible he appeared in my dream as someone who understands (although, the dream was before the Reiki session).

I think it also makes sense that he represented myself-like I was acknowledging the transformation I am undergoing in my life. I’ve always thought of my extra weight as a suit I wear representing the pain I’ve built up and carried throughout my life. My extra weight is not “me”, but something I will release when I don’t need it anymore. Maybe he was telling me it’s time to let go?

Thank you so much for this interpretation, it’s really profound and amazing. You are the best!!

What do you think about this dream?  Could you add anything?  Please use to comment field below  to share your experiences or thoughts.

Looking forward to delving deeper into the Mystical realm.