By Eileen Martin, See the Triumph Contributor
“…It matters not how straight the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate,
I am the captain of my soul.”
Invictus ~ William Ernest Henley
Building a Support System
In order to live abundantly and joyfully we need deep human connections, and truly connecting with one another requires raw vulnerability. In the aftermath of a domestic violence relationship, this is a very scary proposition, I know. Trusting others, even ourselves, is pretty dang frightening; yet, it has been moments of raw vulnerability that have led me to the most meaningful relationships in my life after leaving my domestic violence relationship. The same vulnerability has also led me to recognize what connections were tenuous at best and needed to be cut. Yes, it is okay to walk away from what hurts your soul. In fact, this should be one of the greatest lessons of being a survivor. You have the power. You can create a nurturing support system that sustains you and helps you grow.
“And I feel like I am naked in front of the crowd ‘cause these words are my diary screaming out loud and I know you’ll use them however you want to”
Breathe ~ Anna Nalik
Trusting in Yourself
How very difficult it is that we have an innate need for self-protection of our ego and an innate need for true connection, yet the two are like oil and water; they don’t mix. How often do we miss the opportunity for human connection because we are afraid of “being naked in front of the crowd?” My “naked” moments have revealed to me the ability of open and self-accepting people to not only allow, but also sit comfortably with my vulnerability. The desire for meaningful connection can lead us astray if we are trying to fit in and be accepted rather than being open, raw, and understanding. Trying to meet other’s expectations only creates a perpetual cycle of failure and missed opportunities for true human connection. Not everyone will “get you,” and that is okay. Learning to be comfortable enough in our own skin to be vulnerable helps us traverse moments of self-doubt, rejection and fear and creating a supportive network provides a soft place to fall when life comes at you hard and fast.
Nourish, Grow and Shine
What nourishes you? Providing nourishment for our soul helps us to be self-accepting and, in turn, can help us to be bravely vulnerable and open to connection. So, be an explorer and try new and unexpected adventures to discover what brings you joy. Invite someone you would like to get to know better to meet for coffee. Pay attention to what peaks your interest. Follow that, and dig deeper. Share what makes you smile and what makes you anxious with a friend. Most importantly, go forth boldly with an open and trusting heart and let your light shine and your world will bloom in unimaginable ways.