Yup... because broken, bust, wiped out, knackered are all certainly all words I'd use to describe the way I'm feeling right now. Others may well choose to use other adjectives - prickly, unreasonable, bad-tempered and generally difficult would be some of my guesses based on reactions and expressions I've witnessed in response to my behaviour over the past few days!
The first three months of this year have already proven to be one heck of a ride - in so very many ways. At the time, though, I knew exactly what I was signing up for - and it certainly has over-delivered on the results I was expecting. More than just a means to an end, I've achieved more than I thought could be expected in such a short space of time - and I've done it by asking more of myself than I would have asked even of the strongest mental or physical athlete. And yes, my friends, I've done it. Yes, I knew I'd hit some kind of meltdown once I had the chance to stop and let go, that was inevitable, part of nature's way... but this? This level of fatigue, exhaustion, aching and what can only be described as mental and physical wipeout? No, I must admit that I certainly was not expecting quite such a spectacular collapse. Even by my own measurements, this is really quite a big one!
And I KNOW it's a good thing - because I've been here before. Although this time I'm not in the middle of a struggle, nor am I 'fighting' for or against anything or anybody. There are no battles to be won, there are no more legal or emotional mazes to be worked through. Nobody and nothing is threatening me. I am under no pressure. Everything is, in fact, under control and running its own natural course. Yes, ok, there are still some tweaks needed along the way - but in the grand scheme of things the war has been won. It's just a matter of bringing home the last remaining troops.
And yet... and yet... I am totally and utterly depleted. I am inexplicably teary, and unable to focus on anything for more than a few minutes before my head starts pounding and I lose concentration. Nothing left. All gone. Finished. Over and out. And at the very same time I know that all of this simply heralds more positive growth for me. It's another invitation to let go of the old - to break through to more than I've been before by allowing my self to be broken. Because broken I am.
Just yesterday, for example, I received some news that I wasn't expecting. No great shakes, just another wall of bureaucracy that I'll need to jump over before this divorce can be finalised. It's a paperwork trail that requires me to hire yet another professional to complete this specific process because, as I was told by a sympathetic but powerless representative of the company "that's just the way we do it here". Do-able and, in a way understandable, it still sent me in to a tailspin and I simply couldn't muster the energy to get up, get going and get on with it. So instead I moved in to the kitchen and made myself a cup of mint tea.
And here is where I'm realising that 'broken' may well actually mean 'breakthrough'. Because just a few months ago, I would not have let any such reaction stop me or even break my stride. I'd have pushed on through regardless, drawing on my seemingly endless reserves of energy, digging deeper and pulling on whatever resources I could find (personal or external) to get me through. Now, however, because I'm feeling so very broken (for want of a better word) I am instead allowing myself to feel the blow and instead do something to sooth myself. I have quietly walked away from the situation, knowing that it will all work out. Knowing also that I'm much better off looking after myself in the moment rather than pushing harder still to solve something that, quite frankly, can wait just a little while longer. A few hours or days - even weeks - are going to make no difference whatsoever when all is said and done.
Speaking with my very wise friend Anna last night, she instructed me to take my own medicine and spend the next 48 hours only doing things that I know are good for me. Reminding me to listen to myself, to tune in, and to be who I really choose to be. I nodded sagely, smiling all the while she was telling me this, as her words were pretty much exactly the same instructions I had given to a dear friend only a couple of days earlier. She, like me, is in the middle of a change point. A period in her life when, for the first time ever, she has the opportunity to indulge herself, to discover who she is and what brings her happiness. And she's been surprised to discover that she actually doesn't know the answer... yet.
Me? Do I know the answers? Well, to be honest, sometimes I think I do... most of the time, though, I'm very happy to say that I don't - because that way, in my map of the world at least, it means I'm open to learning and growing. Having said that, I am perfectly aware that I can be particularly stubborn when it comes to getting my point across. I also know that I will resolutely stick on a mission if I believe I can help or add value... sometimes when, in hindsight, it may have been wiser to let go more quickly. But hey, with hindsight we're all experts eh?
I do believe though, right from the core of my being, that what may well feel to me is 'a broken Mel' is in actual fact just another set of walls and barriers crumbling down. In my last post I said I'd finished with being the survivor, the victor in any challenge. I said that now I choose to live my life in peace and joy. Well, I've learned along the way that the power of intention is not something to be messed with. I've realised that when I speak of a desire or choice something from a soul-level, it invariably happens - and inevitably brings along with it the bulldozers and demolition crews necessary to batter through my stubborn resistance to making whatever adjustments are necessary.
So now, this time, I'm going along with the ride and enjoying the scenery. This time I have the opportunity to watch what's happening along the way. I can take in the sights, enjoy the atmosphere and yes, smell the coffee as my wishes come true. As the walls crumble down, so a new door is revealed. A door that had been hidden before. A door to another place - to more of my soul - to an even deeper authentic sense of who I really am.
So yes, I am broken. But I think rather that this is finally the end of an automatic survival and fighting habit that I've fine tuned over the years. Don't get me wrong, that habit has served me very well - exceptionally well in actual fact. And those warrior skills are ones I know I can call on at any time. Now, though, the battle is done. I'm giving up the fight, and I'm learning to live with me - just as I am.
OK, then who am I exactly? Well... I am that little girl, no more than four years old, who loves to fly her kite on the beach. The little girl who roars with laughter as the wind whips at her clothes and hair, while the sea applauds with its rhythmic smacking, chuntering and pulling of the pebbles as wave after wave hits the shore. I'm singing in to the wind, imagining wild stories of mythical creatures and magical people, dancing and twirling over the pebbles, swept along by the thrill of it all and the joy of the moment. I know how to ask for more of the things I like, and for less of the things I don't like. Because I'm safe to do that, and I know my requests are heard - and heeded. There may be times I stamp my foot in frustration or fury - but I'm easily soothed and always willing to learn a better way to understand as well as to be understood.
That was me. And now this IS me. All that is left is to continue accepting more and more of who I am - because you know what? I may be frustrating. I may be demanding. I may at times be too loud, and at others too quiet. No, I'm far from being perfect - but fundamentally, underneath it all, I reckon I'm a pretty good egg! And, as everyone knows, you can't make an omelette without breaking an egg :-))