“Your sacred space is where you can find yourself over & over again”. -Joseph Campbell.
Sitting on that beach, I dug my toes deep into the soft white sand. I scooped it up with my hands & let it fall through my fingers. I took in deep breaths of the fresh, salty sea air. My eyes were wide open, taking in the beauty of the clear blue ocean water & the lush greenery that surrounded me. Alone with only my thoughts, I curled up in that white beach chair & watched the gentle waves lapping at the shore. And for the first time in years I pulled out my journal & started to write.
This trip happened at a perfect time in my life. I was still confused about what was happening to me. I was still getting intrusive thoughts more often than I would have liked. And anxiety & panic attacks were still hitting me hard.
That trip to the islands was healing in more ways than I ever could have imagined. I learned about releasing things from the past that no longer were a part of me & were only holding me back. I fell back in love with journaling & remembered how amazing it feels to write. I found an inner peace with myself-something that I had lost years ago. I began to let go of the weight that I was carrying. And, I not only reconnected with Josh, but unexpectedly reconnected with myself.
There was no hiding behind anything & for the first time in my life I felt comfortable in my own skin. I enjoyed getting to know the girl that I had pushed away many years ago. I actually liked her. Really liked her. Embracing who I was seemed so natural here.
As scary & horrible as my experience with PPA/PPOCD was, I try my best to look for the positive in every situation that life throws at me. I may not always be able to see it in that moment, but eventually I usually can.
I was at my breaking point when I begged Josh for us to come here. I don't think this trip would have ever happened had I not gone through the PPA/PPOCD. Or, if it did, I am not sure that I would have appreciated it as much as I did. I may have never fallen back in love with reading & writing. If it wasn't for going through the PPA/PPOCD, I would have never found blogging & the amazing community that is out there. I would have never found my counselor, who has not only helped me through this but has also brought out a passion inside of me for beginning this path of personal growth & self-discovery. And because of the PPA/PPOCD, I am learning what it's like to live more fully & deeply.
Although I didn't realize it at the time, this trip was the beginning of a new chapter for me. The beginning of learning the importance of letting go of things that don't serve a purpose in my life. The beginning of making room for new & positive things. The beginning of discovering who I am.
I'm not quite sure when it was that I really lost myself. Maybe that's just what happens to some of us after becoming a mom. Or, maybe it was throughout my experience with the intrusive thoughts/OCD/Anxiety when I started to become lost. What I do know, is that week in the islands I had a glimpse of me. And I am ready to get back to that girl on the beach who was truly comfortable in her own skin.