It all started in meditation. I was in the middle of listening to Day 4 of the Oprah & Deepak 21 day meditation experience and I heard Deepak say, “we learn that to make real heart-to-heart connections with others, we must bring our inner light of love out into the world.” Furthermore, “that fearless expansion of the light in your heart will naturally find and connect with other hearts.”
Something about this pulled at my heartstrings. It reminded me of how alone I felt in the beginning of this journey. It brought me back to that place for a moment. Confused. Lost. Angry. Seemingly hopeless. Sad. Drained of confidence within myself, but also with our healthcare system. Just wanting to feel good, but not even having those expectations… anything a little bit better would do. Feeling anxiety flood my body. Aching that encompassed my whole being. Paralysis in my limbs that brought panic to my breath. Foggy thoughts and a balloon in my belly. The black hole seemed only to widen, creating new depths I didn’t think possible. Until there was a glimmer of light.
A soul that saw mine and said, “you’ve been living surrounded by lies and false beliefs.” A soul that saw themself in me and me in them. We were similar, yet not the same. Our limiting beliefs and stories we surrounded ourselves with differed, but ultimately still brought constriction. And with that glimmer of light and hope, I began to crawl out of the hole, only to see that there were hundreds, if not millions, of other glimmers that created this beautiful universe. And those sparks of light my dear, include YOU.
This tribe of support and love and community and trust and empathy and rawness brought me light. To see that which I disowned in myself was what I needed the most, a path towards growth and transformation. That this illness was not present to kill me, but to make me sturdier than I ever believed possible. Only… I had been constantly covering it up. And now I saw that my experience was not completely unique, but that others could see themselves in my story and I could see myself in theirs. And that sense of togetherness brought connection. And the path of transformation didn’t seem so treacherous, but rather one of opportunity to feel completely whole.
Depression and autoimmune disease are linked. A new study linked birth control to depression for the first time. And other research suggests depression is associated with inflammation in the body. I’m going to take a guess and say that you or someone you know has one or more of these risk factors (has autoimmune disease, has been on the pill, or has inflammation, potentially from eating inflammatory foods). Or that you’ve felt like you were in that same black hole, alone and defeated.
Antidepressants are the second-most prescribed medications in the United States. In 2010, doctors wrote 254 million prescriptions for an antidepressant. That is crazy. It makes me want to go all kumbaya on you, but I won’t. And I’m not a doctor. So I’m not offering medical advice. But I am saying YOU ARE NOT ALONE.
The dark spots in me HONOR the dark spots in you.
I’m simply here to tell you that you were born whole and perfect and enough. And that by opening yourself and shining your inner light and truth you can feel more connected to yourself, and in return, feel more connected to others which is an innate desire of our human nature. True connection occurs when your heart touches another heart. And we find our soul tribe. The people who get us. The people who we can relate to. The people who share parts of our story. In that connection, we realize we are not alone. We were never alone. And the dark spots are just chapters of our story which is far from ended…