I’ve made a vow to honour Satya (truthfulness), the second yama in yoga, and that means to be honest, and to live with integrity of intention. It’s not easy to live this way, because there’s so much fear inside and around us. But knowing your truth and sharing it is the best way to choose love. And it’s also a practice.
I’ve also made a vow to always Choose Love. To respond with love. And like all vows, it must be renewed from time to time.
Today is the Women’s International Day and I want to celebrate my own womanhood, as well as womanhood in general, by talking openly about my own story as a woman, including the not so pretty parts.
I’m born in a feminine environment. I have two sisters (so, in my house, there was four women and my dad), and my mother has six sisters. As I was the second grandchild, me and my sister received both a huge amount of love, tenderness and attention.
But as any woman, I felt doubts about my femininity. During the teenager years, I was trying to be like my friends, and to have my first kiss, my first boyfriend, my first bra, and my period in syncronicity with them. Some of those things I could do or have, and some other I coulnd’t, specially when it came to boyfriends. I started to date for the first time when I was 17 years old, with a boy interested in me, but I wasn’t that interested in him. I felt guilty about dating without having deep feelings for him, and trying to impress, but inside, I wasn’t happy, and he was also not.
This was one way (I think), in which I betrayed my own womanhood, my feminility. The first time I fell in love I was 15 years old, but I was so scared that couldn’t even stand to be by his side. I just had to run.
Those are the little things that build up in life, and diminishes one person’s self-confidence about what it means to be a woman. I always connected being a woman with being a mother, but there is so much more to it.
When I was 22 years old, I fell in love again, and could not live it either. I was scared, anxious, afraid, and the relationship didn’t even begin, which filled me with frustration and guilt, because I thought it didn’t work because of what I didn’t do, or didn’t say, or didn’t was.
This started a process of inner criticism and I fell in deep depression. Soon after my anxiety began, and I started to feel too scared to do things I loved doing so far — like looking for a new intership, making friends, learning a new topic at college, dating.
I became more introverted and sad, with apparently no reason. Now I understand it was the beginning of this inner transformation, that led myself to where I am now.
During my depression, my family and friends were so worried about me, that I wanted to “get better” in a hurry. So, I didn’t give myself time to heal. Instead, I pushed myself into a new job, new responsabilities and projects I wasn’t willing to partake in.
I started feeling anxious and afraid around other girls, even my own girlfriends, from school and college. My self-steem as a woman was too low to even keep a cheerful conversation. I tried to please, to like what they liked, and felt unsure about what I really liked or valued. I lost the confidence in myself.
Anxiety is uncomfortable to live with, and not only for myself, but also for people around me. With time, I’ve lost self-development opportunities, friendships, and a thriving social life. Sometimes, I feel very guilty about it, but I also understand that, due to my issues, I also found yoga, meditation, healing and so many wonderful people and opportunities in my life. In so many ways, I’m new, and I like who I am.
I work from home, and it’s not my ideal job, and miss the interactions one can have in a workplace. The chatting around the breaks, the feeling of accomplishment and the money I could make. The new connections. I also miss my girlfriends, and many times, when they call me to a lunch or party, I don’t feel confident enough to go.
I also limit myself because of anxiety. For example, there is a wonderful yoga training I want to do, but I feel anxious about going. This is frustrating and “paralyzes” life. And there is also the worrying of my family and friends, and the very pain of having anxiety per se.
But I feel a movement of surrender and I feel the willingness to come out, to speak for myself, to interact again. It’s still a small willingness, but it’s a sign that I’m coming back to life. I’ve been doing healing sessions for two years now, and I wan’t to start therapy with a local practioner again soon, as well as keep my Practice, doing yoga and meditation.
May my path be filled with peace and light, and always guided by Love. And may yours be also light, joyful and true. We are all beautiful beings of pure light.