The idea of “knowing yourself” struck me when I hit the age of thirty. At that time I was focused on my physical health.
By the time forty rolled around, I had turned my attention to emotional and spiritual healing.
Now, I am fifty.
The beautiful part about turning fifty is having years of experience to reflect upon.
I make no judgements of my life experiences anymore in terms of “good” or “bad”.
Pain, joy, adventures and loss are just moments that serve to teach. We either learn from them or we don’t.
Now that I am at – what is possibly – the midpoint of my life, I am making time to reflect.
Moving forward after looking back.
My grandparents taught me some of the most enduring wisdom and life lessons.
Each summer until I was about 16 years old, my brother and I visited both sets of grandparents. We spent one month in New Jersey with Granny and Pappy and one month in Canada with MumMum and Pa.
I was painfully shy when I was young. It was a hard for me to simply tell someone my name.
Growing up, I was labeled many things: stuck-up, slut, brain. But, the world saw me differently than I saw myself.
Thanks to the influence of my grandparents, those words didn’t change who I thought I was. When I felt unsure, I reminded myself that my family’s blood was in me. Thus, I could put on their big shoes and step into the world.
When I must talk to someone new, I still hear my MumMum saying to me, “…just tell them who you are, Dear.”
The power of her words– “Tell them who you are”– has grown as I have grown.
Her gentle urgings were her way to guide me toward the beginning of all wisdom – knowing yourself.
I was blessed to have known all of my grandparents and lucky that I knew three of them well into my adulthood.
Grateful, is how I feel, for the random times their words of wisdom pop-up.
“Tell them who you are, Dear”
Knowing yourself is a wonderful thing, but it’s hard to answer, “Who am I?”, when you’re knocked to the ground and your head’s spinning.
For a lot of people, sometimes it’s just easier to ignore the question and focus on getting back up.
When I found my life unraveling in my forties, reflection, prayer, and meditation helped me find a space where I could “surrender, to that which is, I am”.
Finding this space can happen many ways. The important thing is to make time for knowing yourself.
Thankfully, I no longer feel that I am living a life that I must survive in order to exist.
They say that with age comes wisdom. However, the depth of that wisdom comes when I allow the experiences of life to teach me about my evolving-self. Knowing where I come from is helpful but, it’s my job to always figure out who I am, why I am here and then finding ways to communicate that with the world.
The beginning of that wisdom always starts in knowing yourself.
Surrender to that which is I am
I learned over time, that my inability to show myself to the world was my way to survive in it.
It was just who I needed to be to get to where I am now.
Sitting quietly, meditating or pulling weeds in the garden or other times while pushing my feet on the rudder pedals of my plane up in the air, I find that my mind is clear.
I will continue to heed my MumMum’s words of wisdom. And above all, listen to my heart as it guides me to “I am.”
Gentle words became a powerful reminder