These last couple of months have seen a lot of me getting funky and unfortunately I don’t mean getting funky on the dance floor...
What I mean is that the last six weeks or so I’ve found myself facing a sometimes overwhelming amount of my own shadow, the inner darkness that is wanting to be seen. With all of the uncertainty happening in my life on a daily basis, there’s a lot coming up for me to look at in the realm of how I respond to the changes of life as it is presented to me.
Being a holistic explorer and student of life means me surrendering completely into the unknown as I let the larger plan that my soul has for my time on this planet unfold. This process brings a whole lot of magical moments as everything aligns itself perfectly before my eyes seemingly on its own, along with quite a bit of “What the fuck am I doing with my life?!” as I wait for the next step to be revealed.
It’s in these times of not knowing that I find my shadow side wanting to be witnessed the most. I’ve experienced enough of these shadow parts of myself these last couple of years to know that I do better to not resist them when they show up.
If it’s showing up, it’s there for me to look at, to learn from, and to move through.
I’ve learned to let myself sit with and fully feel the emotions as they come up and play themselves out in the field of my awareness. Instead of distracting myself and stuffing down the fear, the anger, the worry, or the sadness, I let it wash over me like a cleansing rain. I know that as it moves through me, I let go of the energy which would otherwise be stored and most likely expressed later in an unhealthy way when I least expect it.
As a result of me being very aware of my shadow’s presence these last couple of months and letting it be seen, I haven’t been showing the light, happy, and cheerful aspects of myself to the world as much as usual.
I’ve been in a bit of an emotional funk, experiencing what I’ve endearingly come to call the state of “funkiness”.
This past weekend I was what from the outside probably looked like a huge emotional mess. My feelings were bouncing back and forth like a pingpong ball— one second I was happy, the next I was sad. One moment I was excited about life, the next I was angry at everything. At one point I was dancing around the kitchen and a few minutes later I was in a ball on the floor crying my eyes out.
Luckily, I’m currently living with two of what may be the most beautiful soul mates I’ve come to know in this lifetime. My boyfriend, Cole, and our amazing friend, Becky, were with me throughout the whole weekend, watching as I jumped from one emotional state to the next without much rhyme or reason.
When I first started feeling the funkiness waking up inside of me, I got scared. My fear voice said, “Don’t let it come out. Keep it in. They’ll judge you. They won’t like you anymore and you’ll loose your friends.” I expressed this fear to each of them separately and they both assured me that they would love me no matter what I said or did.
It was as though their reassurance that they wouldn’t disown me if I expressed the darker parts of my being opened the flood gates which allowed the full expression of myself to be seen.
In being surrounded by people who I knew would support me no matter what gave me the safe space to throw the temper tantrums that my inner child has been longing to unleash and ultimately to let it be loved, which is all the shadow wants anyways. They gave me space I needed to express myself in it’s entirety and in doing so I realized that I don’t have to put on a show or impress anyone by blocking out whatever I’m feeling.
If people truly love me unconditionally, they love every dimension of my Self— the good, the bad, and the ugly.
This weekend, the concept of “you are not your thoughts or emotions” really grounded in for me. As I was experiencing my full range of funkiness from one extreme to the other, there was a part of me that would silently step outside of the emotional turmoil that was being expressed in order to witness the whole experience without getting attached.
What do I mean by not getting attached? I mean that I was choosing to not be fully identified with whatever emotional state coming up in the moment. I knew that whatever was being experienced was only one aspect of myself, that it was temporary, and that it would pass. I didn’t know when the feelings wouldn’t be present anymore. I didn’t know how I was going to feel on the other side. I just knew that, as with everything in life, this was also changing.
When I started to feel myself coming back to center for longer periods of time, I knew that whatever this particular funk was about was on its way out and I began to actively search for the lessons in the experience, the diamonds in the rough.
Every adversity brings with it the seed of an equivalent advantage. ~Napoleon Hill
While there were many personal gems of wisdom I took from this experience, these two questions stood out for reflection:
1. Why don’t we allow ourselves and others the space to funk out when necessary?
2. What would our world be like if we learned to remain detached yet compassionate to the emotional turmoil experienced by ourselves and others?
I’ve decided that next time someone around me starts to get funky, instead of trying to make them feel better like I would normally do, I’m going to let them know I love them and create a safe space for them to play out their funkiness and give them responsibility to receive the gifts found within the murky darkness for themselves.