"At the age of 37 I fell into darkness, finding myself trapped in my own mind, suffering from depression, anxiety disorder and panic attacks. I pondered about quitting this life. I didn’t know how to stop, or get out of this nightmare. I didn’t really want to die, but I just couldn’t live any longer in unbearable pain. This period of my life was terrifying for me, my children and husband. My kids, 7 and 4 at the time, needed a mothers care and attention, but I just couldn’t handle it. My husband had to be both mother and father, and I was at the end of my rope. I stayed in my bedroom for months, feeling sorry for myself, until one night my soul screamed, “ENOUGH. It’s time to get up and start living.” Even though I had lost my faith I started to pray, “Please God, help me. Show me the way out of this chamber of pain. Save me from the torments of my mind and teach me how to love myself.
I lived most of my infant life in a orphanage. When growing up, I had no sense of belonging, no sense of who I was, or where I came from. I was a lost little girl, who felt rejected, abandoned and broken. My self-esteem was crushed from this overwhelming condition. On the way through life, I learned to survive, pretending I knew all the answers. This behaviour worked for a while until a tragedy hit. I had found my soul mate in 1986, and above all, I wanted a baby. Jessy was born on July 27, 1988, and sadly died on August 11 the same year. I don’t have to tell you how this heartbreak affected my state of mind. It was devastating for me and my husband.
I want this to be a letter of inspiration and empowerment. So I will not go into detail about my past suffering. Today, I have a beautiful message of Hope, Love and Courage to share with the world. Life is meant to flow and we are meant to fly. Every challenge has within it an energy to move us into a higher place. With every painful experience, there is some good to be found, a lesson to be learned, or a gift of some sort to be discovered. Through the years I have learned to accept the things I cannot change and find the courage to change the things I can. I learned to look beyond pain and live my life with an open heart. Life is not a fight… it’s a process. Letting go and letting God is a choice I can make. Instead of focusing on the pain, I can choose to see the gifts that life offers. I can choose to trust in God’s perfect plan. There is a divine purpose behind everything, so when hard times come, I need to pause, and look for the gifts that such an experience can give me. I am not saying to forget about grieving, I am saying, give yourself time to grieve, and then look for the gifts.
Learning to love and accept my life took compassion and self-realization. Part of me needed adjustment. I worked hard on changing unhealthy habits, and still am, as this is a life journey. Things beyond my control, I’ve learnt to let go and let God take care of them. When I don’t like where I am in my life, I shift my perception and change the experience. It is during the writing of my book “Courageous Butterfly,” a journey to self-acceptance, that I discovered a way to free myself from emotional pain. It began with learning to investigate my thoughts with love and understanding. An amazing thing happened; I found some good and gifts in each painful situation of my life. It was the process of opening and expanding my heart. With my new way of seeing life, I had transformed my experience and felt completely different about my story. Suddenly, I was at peace with my past. This realization took place during a conversation with one of my yoga students. At the time, this friend was going through a divorce and also was in the process of recovering from breast cancer. Frankly she’d had enough. I understood, but I also saw a different way to look at it. She spoke about the challenges of her divorce, and then, sceptically she asked, “Tell me about the gifts you received from your son’s passing.” I was surprised. However the words flew out of my mouth, I knew exactly what Jessy gave me. “I received the biggest gifts, I said. “ All my life I felt abandoned, rejected and alone, but since Jessy’s death, I no longer feel that way. Jessy is with me, around me, in me, always and forever… he’s my guardian angel.” “In the past I was terrified of dying, thinking about death for days and weeks at a time, however since I decided to see the good in my son’s passing, I no longer fear death. I know Jessy will be at my side when it’s time to cross over.” Jessy showed me how to love completely, how to accept things as they are, and how to forgive myself, and whatever hurt me in my life. I am much more loving and compassionate.” “What’s more, I have a personal connection with God, my faith came back, and I’ve been given a new understanding about life. This has brought me peace and serenity. I am so blessed.” I finally told her.
When we choose to see the gifts, we no longer wish for our past to be any different. Instead of feeling resentment, anger, or bitterness about what has happened, we have learned to love and accept it. We have learned to live with grace and gratitude in our heart.
- Courageous Butterfly