Coming out of Hiding

I am healing myself. I am fusing the two parts of me together that had to split for me to survive. The person that is saying ‘No’ is the little girl inside of me that has started to speak and tell me how she feels. I am no longer trying to tell her why she should put up with being treated unfairly, or why she should give away her love and get nothing in return. I am just listening to her and integrating her into my life, and letting her know that she no longer has to hide in fear.

I have lived most of my life trying to prove myself. I always felt like I was at the starting line but everyone else was already running and I had to catch up. I used to spend most of my energy covering up what I felt ashamed of, and presenting a front of a person who I thought looked like they had it all together. I was ashamed of where I came from, I was ashamed of my family. It was a shame born out of a feeling that something wasn’t right but not being able to verbalize it, so it was just in me. So, I split into two people. The person I invented to be socially acceptable, and the other hurt and sad person that came out when I was alone.

As I am learning more about meditation and quieting the voice inside my head, I realize now that I have had two voices. The sad little girl who just wanted to be loved, and the other girl whose main purpose was taking care of me financially and making sure I survived, but didn’t want to get close to anyone. I would flip flop between these two people which is why I work in the financial world, but I create art and write this blog. For most of my life I did not nurture the side of me that wanted to create art and explore writing. I wrote in my journal my whole life, but rarely shared my writing with anyone. And I would go through periods of creating art, but I would become so overwhelmed with emotion that I would have to stop.

When I got married and had my daughter I poured all my creative energy into my family. I loved having a focus outside myself, and an outlet for my artistic side. Decorating the house, cooking and planning holidays and vacations satisfied that side of me. But, as my daughter went off to college the light inside me dimmed as I realized that my marriage alone was not going to be able to satisfied my needs. When we first got married I was happy not to explore myself too deeply and have the distractions of my family. But I felt myself changing and moving towards a calling a didn’t quite understand.

In order to satisfy my creative side and follow this calling, I started writing this blog. The simple act of writing 1000 words every week and publishing it changed my life entirely. Did I know it was going to change my life? No! But, this blog led me to rediscover my love for painting, and I opened an online store and sold my paintings. I had art shows in Los Angeles before the pandemic, and I sold T shirts and greeting cards. I started creating portraits of women as Queens, that looked like them and selling them. It was a budding business until last summer when my mind starting drifting. I would sit down to paint and I would be thinking of other things, or rushing through it. Instead of creating art, I would lay out on my balcony in the sun and watch the palm trees sway and listen to music. It kind of scared me because I really didn’t understand it, and I kept saying that the next weekend I would paint again. But I wouldn’t and instead I would take long walks on the beach, take long baths and lay on my balcony and take a nap. I just wanted to be still.

I got a puppy and I started dating more, this is what my heart wanted to do so I went with it. Looking back I realize that my consciousness was working on fusing the two people inside me into one. I got a divorce and moved to Los Angeles from Portland Oregon in 2019. My first year in LA, there was a part of me that felt like I was on vacation and there was another part that would cry uncontrollably and was confused, frustrated and sad. At first I thought I was crying over my divorce, which I was but I was also letting out all the emotions of the sad little girl inside of me that had been brave and stayed hidden for so long.

As I played and bonded with my puppy, took long walks on the beach, and soaked up the attention of the men that said I was beautiful and sexy and wanted to kiss me I started to open up and soften. I shared what I was learning along the way in this blog, and you read it and encouraged and applauded me. And I started to realize that the person I was ashamed of for so long was where my real power and my authenticity resided.

At the beginning of this year, I finally got the courage to go deeper and get more in touch with my inner self. So, I got serious about my yoga practice, and just like writing this blog I decided that I would practice yoga ‘no matter what’. To me, that meant that no matter how I was feeling, or what else was going on in my life, or how bad I was at it, I am doing it! I was determined that yoga, like my writing, would be a part of who I am. And just like writing led me back to my art, yoga has led me to try surfing, to skate again, and to play tennis again for the first time in 10 years. Yoga has led me to be more in touch with the energy and feelings in my body, and it has also helped me release old toxic energy that is no longer serving me. It seems weird to me now that I actually used to be scared of my own body, of what it had to tell me. Realizing that I can release the energy in my body and it won’t hurt me is a huge realization to me. Along with releasing the energy, I am releasing the shame over being scared of my own body.

In the past few weeks I have tried so many new things and explored how it feels in my body, but also in the past few weeks I have said ‘No’ more than I ever have. In saying ‘No’ to things and people that drain my energy and dampen my enthusiasm I have been able to say ‘Yes’ to the things that light me up and move me forward. I am healing myself. I am fusing the two parts of me together that had to split for me to survive. The person that is saying ‘No’ is the little girl inside of me that has started to speak and tell me how she feels. I am no longer trying to tell her why she should put up with being treated unfairly, or why she should give away her love and get nothing in return. I am just listening to her and integrating her into my life. I am feeling her joy and seeing her smile at simple things. She is in charge now, for the first time.

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  1. I’m sure it took courage to write about your inner feelings. Sometimes we are more harsh to ourselves than others, but remember to be kind to you and love will endure on many ways. Im impressed with your honesty.

    1. Thanks Nancy, yes we are harsh more on ourselves than others. I am really working on that. Trying to give myself grace and space to make mistakes! Thanks for your kind words and support! Love, Peta

  2. In the past, I felt like I was living with two different people in my soul. Several years ago, the two merged through thought work, getting healthy and really believing in myself. Thank you for sharing your journey.

    Kim