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Because of What You Have Been Through, You Are Mighty

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Please don’t be deceived by the feelings your body or mind give you of vulnerability. You are not weak. Vulnerable is OK. Vulnerable is more than OK. Vulnerable is being human. You can be both vulnerable and mighty. And that is a mighty combination.

I have a chronic illness (multiple sclerosis) that has at times literally floored me – taken me down to the floor, to my bed, to a place of mind and body numbing nothingness.

I have had rage, doubt and despair, and during one period, clinical anxiety and depression.

This is a far away time now, but I remember it well. I could live there as a story of how bad things can get and how bad it is to know how bad things can get, but – over time and with gentle and attentive work – my body has caught up to the fact that knowing how bad things can get and still finding the hope, the courage and the inner and outer support and learning you need to continue and to thrive is the far more important story. It is real experience. It is the truth. It doesn’t deny the times of darkness. It doesn’t pretend pain and fatigue and unpredictability are easy to dance with (although they have got easier the more honoring I am of my experience) – it honors those realities but it it does not stop there. It continues.

I live by the light of my experience, not a story. As a mentor, I help others to learn to live by the light of their experience.

The truth is, your experience can show you just how mighty you are.

I have been challenged with recovery from self-doubt, with finding my confidence and power. Through my own healing and recovery journey, I have experienced the amazing, poignant miracle of reclaiming lost and exiled places inside me. Brokenness is a gateway to wholeness.

I know how we can feel as if the mighty ones are the ones walking around on seemingly strong legs, seemingly getting stuff done, seemingly holding the holy grail of how to be fixed and stay fixed.

But let’s look a little closer at illness, recovery and healing. The most powerful trinity and teachers in life. And what our mighty experience, genuine compassion and first-hand wisdom can offer to the world.

Let’s look take a look at you, Mighty community, and all you are and all you can give.

The people on the pages of The Mighty are leaders, experts in the field of understanding human pain and the kind of awareness and compassion that is needed to address it. Who else is doing that in the world as well as you are? Every day, there are people coming to these pages who are the doctors, therapists, parents, friends, family and carers of people of you mighty warriors.

They are are sitting at your feet, ready to hear your wisdom. They need your help. They need your support to develop their own abilities of compassion and self-compassion, support and self-compassion. With your words, with your courage to open your heart and be valuable, with your hard-won skill at expressing the inexpressible, you are literally healing and changing lives.

In the same way, being there for someone who is going through what you are going through who feels lost in an exile of “no one understands this” and “I don’t understand this” and “how then can I move with this, find hope, find help” …can you see how it is everything for them to have you sit alongside them? Because of you, they are not alone any more.

I admire the mighty warriors navigating the journey of recovery so much, so much more than anyone really. Social media is covered with modern day healers and advisers. It is easy to issue edicts and inspirational quotes from the position of never having been through intense pain or difficulty, from the position of some training or feeling you have. But the foundation of healing and hope provided by those who live and document the depth of the odyssey of illness and the ups and downs of the recovery journey is a priceless gift. They – you – are the real teachers and leaders, the real inspiration.

One of the things I have taken into my heart and into my every day from my personal healing journey is that the bad things that have happened to you do not have to become the whole story. It is in retelling that story to ourselves over and over again, we may limit our mightiness. If we are going to make a story out of our experience that plays on and on, plays into each day, let’s make it a true story – that we have known penetrating darkness that seemed un-lightable but we did find the light. We have known pain that seemed unbearable but we did bear it. We had questions that seemed unanswerable but we did answer them. We went to the depths and got to know them – and we kept the knowledge of how to resurface whole, even when it was so hard to hold onto.

And far from being robbed of anything, we learned of our heart, our courage, our flexibility, our alchemy, our strength. We learned about magic and most of all our magic. That’s not a bad thing. That’s precious.

Contact with this precious magic may go up and down, but that does not mean it is not there. Waves on the ocean go up and down and the ocean is mighty.

Sometimes we may miss the sparkling truth. We may get distracted by the burden of self-comparison, the pain of our losses or by associating vulnerability with weakness instead of with tender power.

You – The Mighty – are doing or being the seemingly impossible, expressing the inexpressible, falling and getting up again on your strong and mighty legs, living from your mighty heart, rising every day to live with the courage and grace of being your real self.

Take a moment to stand in the middle of all of that and breathe.

You’ve earned it.

Photo by Aga Putra on Unsplash

Follow this journey on Innate Being.

Originally published: September 27, 2018
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