Coming Back to Awareness

My kids have left the “mom is amazing” phase. They have made that clear. I thought it would last longer than 9 years, but it hasn’t. Don’t get me wrong, they love me and they tell me often, but they are unsure of my status as “woman who knows everything”.

So I was surprised today when they stood in awe of me like in the old days. It didn’t seem like a big deal. I told them a storm was coming. The sky was still blue, so they asked how I knew. I told them about the leaves on the trees. They flip over. In college, I ran an outdoor business so I looked at the trees all the time. The weather mattered. And I have always loved how nature seems to know things. Equally amazing is how the animals know to move to higher ground before a tsunami. Nature is plugged in and we are generally not.

In a way, it is that level of awareness to which humans journey throughout our days on this planet. We come here with awareness. We experience childhood and it burdens us with varying levels of dissociation. And then, we have to work our way back out of it.

I am not suggesting that we will ever know a storm is coming like the trees (although maybe in our joints), but there is awareness we can use to our advantage for the other types of storms. There are the storms that brew within us. Some storms manifest in the outer world. Occasionally, we know they are coming like moving homes or a new job. Sometimes, we don’t know they are coming, like a major illness or death in the family. And sometimes, we don’t know they are coming because they are happening on an inner level, a level we are not tuned in to. With memory repression, I experience many inner storms.

Fear versus Faith

No matter what the storm, there is a preparation process and it is largely happening without the ego self. And if we get very aware, we can notice it. I have noticed that my storms are prefaced with a rest period. I will get very tired. I won’t be able to do much other than surf the internet and sleep. But my ego self will push hard against the exhaustion leaving me in a state of chaos. I will not have the energy to work, but I will try anyway, usually resulting in counterproductive tasks that just keep me busy. I am working to calm my inner control freak, but for now, the battle wages on.

I know it is futile. I was telling someone the other day that despite my need for control, I know my higher self is in charge. I know my inner control freak is not. If it was up to my control freak, every detail would be nipped and tucked months before the storm. But my higher self is on a different schedule. It is a “just in time” schedule. And while everything always works out, I tend to spend the preceding months in a panic.

I know the fear is useless. It accomplishes nothing. But the trauma has wired my brain for fear. Even though I know everything will be fine, even when I have glimpses of faith that show me there is nothing to worry about, I still worry. I still suffer the anxiety. I still spend hours going through the scenarios of doom and despair. But in the end, it is fine. I am fine. My kids are fine. Everything is fine.

So, I have learned to notice the signs that a storm is brewing, whether conscious or unconscious. I notice my inner chatter increases. I notice the scenarios forming in my head, the “catastrophizing”. How will I escape the devastation? How will I handle all the things that will go wrong? How will I make it through this one? I notice the muscle tightness in my body. I notice the stuck energy and the defending.

I notice it. I stay aware. It is still there, but maybe it stays for less time. And if I can keep that understanding that the fear is old, it might lessen the impact a little bit. And maybe I can sleep a little better. And maybe I can be more optimistic. And the storm will pass. And I will be the better for it.