Shadow Care 101 — On Growing A Spine & Forcing What Was Never Meant To Be.
I didn’t use to be a shadow, you know.
I was me. I was all of me.
I ran the show because I was all there was… I thought. I learned everything I knew at the time from what I thought was an entire world full of people willing to bury me beneath the weight of their own wants and needs.
My luck was poorer, my circumstances harder, my sadness greater, and my anger and defensiveness so huge it could only be matched by my ego. My ego was an awesome trainer when it was just me (before I became a shadow). It helped me fight to be right, no matter what.
I think I actually became a black belt in the hair-raising Oh No You Didn’t. But I never tested this out to say for certain.
I must have become a shadow when I grew too tired to care who was right. When I realized you have to ask someone to make room for you, then you really don’t need to be there; that spot is not for you.
I noticed that I built walls to prevent myself from the hurt of trying to build a bridge when the other person couldn’t care less if you succeed. Again, I was forcing something that shouldn’t be.
Why is living and loving and caring for each other so difficult? Because we make it so.
Okay, I won’t speak for you, because I make it so.
I was so exhausted and began to long for peace. Not the fake stuff where I could walk around like lalala and the whole world was rainbows and butterflies, and little birds helped me dress in the morning (although that would be killer).
No, I wanted the kind that no matter what happened all around me, there was a safe place I could hold steady through it all.
The more my heart cracked under the weight of the ridiculous perceptions I carried, the more light seeped in. The more misguided notions I tossed aside, the more light poured in, and Bam, here I am, a shadow extraordinaire.
It took me a while to understand that all parts of us have something to teach. Shadows are the powerful part of you that have much to teach about what you need more of, or less of, in your life. Shadows rise up to warn you, not take over, so you don’t let it happen.
If I get into a repetitive situation of negativity and a shadow rises up quickly to burn the perpetrator with a flame-thrower of self-righteousness, I pause. No kidding.
I’ve had to learn to hug it quickly to my heart, welcome its warning, pat it on the back and with a big smile, say Step aside, hon, overkill not needed, I have a spine now. I may not create what people do to me, but I decide whether to allow it to exist or not.
There is no shadow without light, so I’m glad to know I exist now. I know my purpose is to speak the clear voice of truth as a warning, a gauge of what is at this moment, so that who I am as a whole can maneuver the potholes and obstacles, and correct the wrong turns on the path to peace.
Be smart. Don’t ignore your shadow as signs of being a bad or mean person. If you listen to her, she will calm down, and you’ll hear clearly what to attend to for your own well-being.
Because only The Shadow knows.