Some days it can feel like whatever positive things are happening in my life, I find reasons to doubt it all and feel lost. An emptiness takes over and I desperately look for ways to feel ok again. I start making choices from a place of pain, unhelpful choices that cause more pain and I lose my healthy sense of self for while. And while the human experience is not one of constant happiness, I recognise this part of me very well, and know it is a part which I struggle to love. This is my Emptiness Monster, and no amount of chocolate, wine, distractions or hiding can calm her down…in fact she grows stronger the more I run away. Emptiness Monster is like an black hole in my solar plexus, sucking away life force and demanding I feed her. She operates as a self-care disabler, isolation junkie and shame dweller. For a long time I have been very angry with my monster, fought against her and wished she would disappear. It is very appealing to disown her completely, how could part of me be so determined to self-sabotage? How can part of me keep me so stuck, and for what purpose?
It has taken me several years of searching and inner work to arrive at the point where I wish to learn to love my Emptiness Monster. I wish to stop fighting her and find out what is beneath her emptiness. I sense that whatever her motivation and need, it cannot possibly be harder to face than the battle we’ve been in! I am just starting out on this venture but have received some very powerful messages already, from her and also my outer world.
One thing is clear so far…whatever my Emptiness Monster wants can only be provided by me. She is part of me after all. I feel I have all the nourishment and love available she could ever wish for, the challenge is to find out where the disconnection is? What has broken down and kept her pulling in the opposite direction? This will require some deep inner listening and Self-Care. It will require courage to spend time with Emptiness Monster, but in a mindful way. Rather than reacting to the emotions it brings up, to sit in them with my heart open. This is an act of self-compassion. A beautiful opportunity to really flex my self-care muscles! I do not know what will be on the other side, but what I do know is it important I meet this monster with love not fear.
After all, what if this monster is actually a beautiful part of myself that has not been allowed a voice? A part so delicate and vulnerable that needs to be held not controlled or judged. What if behind that emptiness is a deeper longing, a longing to reconnect to self, find wholeness? I am deeply grateful that I have reached a stage in my 30’s where I have the resources to meet my monster with love. Some do not get the chance in their entire life. I already know my love is big enough to hold this part, otherwise I would not have reached this point. The challenge may be in remembering this, while sitting in the fire of emptiness. But with a challenge comes the opportunity for growth and gifts…and I didn’t come so far to abandon this part now!
Challenge accepted I then consider, how can I best support myself during this process? An important part of self-care for me is remembering to ask for help. This is not a superhero mission, but one of kindness and nurture. What helps is writing this, naming my struggle is to bring it out of the shadows and into a place where it can be accepted. Maybe everyone has an emptiness monster? Maybe that is why any of us look outside ourselves for love and validation? I want to allow the people I love to support me, just by listening, being present to my process. Some acts of self-care I will draw on are:
- Taking walks in nature – this helps me stay grounded and refreshes my energy and spirit.
- Reach out to others – call a friend, have fun, share what I am feeling…remember I am not alone!
- Mindfulness/meditation – take time to create a quiet, peaceful space to allow thoughts and feels to be heard.
- Exercise/good nutrition – simple acts of eating well and moving the body can bring stability and peace of mind.
- Play/lightness – remember this is all a fun game of life and not to take myself too seriously!
I will keep you updated on the monster befriending process, I am actually quite excited what this adventure will bring! To loving our monsters… x x x