Something happened the other day. Something involving a possible case of domestic violence.
It didn’t involve me in any way.
But it triggered old memories all the same.
Because, yes… I’ve been in abusive relationships.
But I’m not ready to talk about it.
Instead, I want to draw your attention to what helped me leave and heal afterwards.
Yes. Yoga. And meditation.
2 yoga teachers, 2 survivors of abuse.
First Liz Arch, “How Yoga Saved Me From Domestic Violence” (trigger warning)
A tiny voice inside of me, however, would not be silenced. That voice told me that I was worth more and I could walk away.
When I found the courage to leave, I felt my first glimmer of my warrior within. I set out on a path to heal myself from the inside out. (…) I committed myself to a daily yoga and meditation practice. I couldn’t run or hide from myself on my mat. I sat with my anger, my grief and my pain. My emotions would weave their way into my practice and stay with me until I acknowledged them. My yoga mat became my therapist, teaching me to breathe through the discomfort, forgive and let go.
(…) it took me years to get there. And a lot of yoga, and a lot of therapy, and a lot of weeping and writing and reading. Anything you repress, or run from, or deny, owns you. It owns you. And if you don’t turn and face that stuff down, you’ll call it into your life in other ways. The truth wants out. Your heart wants to heal so it can open for you again. Whatever is in your past does not have to define your future. But it probably will if you don’t do the work to liberate yourself. We have such fear. We think these things will overwhelm us, that we won’t survive. But what you won’t survive is the not facing it. That’s the part that kills you.
You can forgive yourself for choices you might have made that were harmful to you or others. When we’re in pain, we don’t tend to treat ourselves well, and sometimes that also spills onto the people with whom we’re closest. But life can be beautiful.
I want to say this:
If you’re hurting right now, even if you don’t think it’s “bad enough” to constitute “abuse”, stay on the yoga path. Or the “working with your stuff” path. Or the “healing with mindfulness” path.
You can go a long way into the yoga path with free resources on the internet. You can start with my free e-book and acknowledge your pain with compassion.
Start with the most unrelated things. Like procrastination.
But stay on the path. I promise you it will help. It will help with whatever it is you need right now.
I’m wishing you love. And I’m wishing you the strength to stay on this path.