Three Steps to Keep Moving Forward when Panic Creeps in

I’m keenly aware of the cycles of life these days.
It wasn’t always this way. I spent much of my young adult life blissfully unaware, just riding the wind wherever it took me.

Yet this kind of freedom is deceiving. It feels free—until it comes crashing down without warning. And then there is no plan for dealing with it effectively. The result is usually to avoid or ignore, to move forward on the path that seems to come with the least amount of pain.

Like when my mother was diagnosed with cancer for a second time—a liver metastasis from her colon cancer a few years earlier. I was getting ready to graduate college and start graduate school. My adult life was ready to begin, and yet I found myself moving back home. I didn’t have a plan for that.

And then two years later, when the cancer came back again. And two years after that, when it took over her body. At 27 and just four years into a young marriage, there was no plan for dealing with that either.

The ups and downs of this haphazard path take a toll over time. For me, it resulted in a debilitating case of adrenal fatigue, which forced me to slow to a crawl.

I’ve never gotten fully back up to speed. I doubt I ever will. That’s how incapacitating a lack of awareness can be.

In that forced slowing down, however, I realized I had to find a different way, because what I had been doing clearly wasn’t working. So I spent years studying and practicing holistic nutrition, mindfulness, and self-healing. I attended the “Woman Within” weekend training and joined a local empowerment circle. I started a regularly writing practice.

Slowly, a shift began to happen. New insights began to emerge. A plan began to form.


The Unnecessary Taboo on Love

I’m not talking about sexy love or family love. Those kinds of love are acceptable.

No, I’m talking about deep, heart-felt, now-you-know-for-sure-that-you’re-enough-in-my-eyes love. Spiritual love. Holy love. Love that resides within and never ends.

We have the capacity, the longing, the heart-stopping need to love and be loved. Without limits. Without guidelines. Unfettered, unabashed, unfiltered love. And yet we hold back.

Over my lifetime I’ve had several relationships in which I wanted to pour out my very heart and soul (and secretly part of me still longs to). But I didn’t. I didn’t allow myself because I’m only supposed to give my love to my children, to my parents, to my lover. And these unspoken boundaries limit our capability to express what’s inherent inside each of us.

Who designed this cramped box labeled “Love is…”?