When I was a child my parents had a beach house in a quiet area outside the city. My sisters and I used to complain about having to spend our holidays and most weekends away from our friends. Though we would occasionally bring friends to stay, it was like we were missing out on growing up in a society with all its enticements – shopping centre hangouts and the like. There was also another part of me that was relieved that I had the space to be in wonder with the world a little longer than many of my peers.
My sisters and I used to sleep in the backyard under the stars in summer. I would wake up halfway through the night and lay there in awe – magnetised to a sky filled with billions of stars. It was so dark, we could see everything – so many stars that to this day I’ve not found a place quite the same. I remember shooting stars every second and feeling like the sky was so close, as if it was moving closer towards me the longer I looked at it – now I understand this to mean that the seemingly close proximity was a reflection of feeling the universe inside me. I’d lay there for hours just staring at the grandness and majesty of it all. It was like my eyes got wider and my heart expanded up and out to meet it all. Pure connection with a divine aspect of me that is still palpable as I write about it. Nonetheless, it was a connection I decided to completely sully on the basis that no one and nothing was meeting me with the same grandness and majesty that the stars did.
Enter ‘Big Grey Jumper and No Hugs’ Period
Though I had started contracting earlier in my young life, it was from puberty onwards that I became very awkward and self-conscious about being seen. The level of anxiety I felt walking into a room was suffocating. I’d do anything to hide and that included not speaking and if I had to, it was only a few words. That and wearing a huge grey jumper. I didn’t want anyone to touch me, not even my parents. I could feel their hurt at this – they didn’t understand why and I didn’t know what to tell them. I wasn’t sure why at that point. Now I know that I was reacting to my own sensitivity to the world. Every movement another made was felt, and rather than expressing how I felt and/or accepting others for all of who they were, I chose to shut up shop and play the ‘I’m not really here’ card.
I loved the playfulness of my mum through this time though. She got creative and one day asked if she could just squeeze my arm. I came around a little and sure enough, after a while this was our ‘thing’ and an opportunity to connect with some level of intimacy and touch.
This translated into other areas of my life. I’d play competitive sports which I was very good at and would train hard for; from the age of 14, I was training every day and sticking to a so-called sports diet. My identity was heavily wrapped up in being an excellent sportswoman and my potential was big. But by the time I turned 15, it was starting to take its toll as it wasn’t giving me anything near what I knew to be true, nowhere near the magic of the stars from my childhood. Bulimia started to kick in. I remember the first time I threw up – it was on a family holiday, after fish and chips. I’d felt like I’d stuffed up by not being back home for training, that I was letting the team down and mostly that I didn’t express to my parents what I was feeling. It was all held in and the self-punishment was the only form of relief at that point. Another time I remember eating virtually nothing for two days after a big binge and then played a game of netball.
By the time alcohol and drugs came along in my late teen years, I was ready to go wild, albeit under the radar. My parents never saw it manifest on the outer because I had a friend whose mum would allow me to sleep over if we went out at night. I would drink a bottle of vodka and spend the rest of the night throwing up. My friend would drive me home and put me to bed and sometimes go back out, that’s how early in the evening I’d write myself off. There were many nights I wouldn’t remember a single thing – totally taken over by the alcohol or drug of choice. I paid a price for it in my body – not just the physical symptoms for days after but also the extreme mood swings, going from feeling so-called ‘free’ to do and say what I want (finally after all those years of self-imposed quietness!) to feeling ashamed, anxious, self-loathing and given up.
Depression kicked in when I was 18 – my parents divorced, my first boyfriend cheated on me, a child family friend died, and I left the safe confines of school’s rules. The bulimia got worse and I fed my sense of loneliness by playing this game of ‘I wish they would just ask me if I was OK’ but never taking the step to ask for help myself – or better yet, owning the fact that I was making the choices that led to these feelings.
Still Hiding – Just with a Different Mask
Fast forward 10 years and I was still living a life of recklessness to my body. Living in London, my expression started to come along a little – I had to speak up more to get jobs and rent rooms etc. but fundamentally I was still playing the shy girl wearing the huge grey jumper. Though I made it look better on the outside with better clothes and talking more, essentially, I was still in hiding, just with a different mask.
A big part of my desire to travel was about searching for something more. Surely there was a place in the world that reflected the grandness and majesty of those stars from my childhood?
London seemed to have a lot to offer – people from all walks of life, all parts of the world. It was stimulating for the senses, to say the least. At the time I thought it was helping me ‘come out’ of myself as I danced with the excitement of being in the world’s melting pot of humanity and creativity. In truth, just like the night sky in any city, there were few true stars to reflect the grandness of what I knew was inside but was not yet tapping into.
Little did I tap into my essence during that time. I’d put myself in dangerous positions like walking through the middle of the city inebriated at night, not remembering a thing the next day, somehow stumbling home. Another time, travelling in the United States, I was sleeping in our hire car with a friend, smoking pot and a policeman drove up and pulled a gun on us. He let us be, but it could have had serious consequences had he not. Other times I’ve chosen self-abuse including running a marathon with an injured knee where I hopped the second half and couldn’t walk for weeks afterwards. Extreme sports were another way I could test my body in the hope that I could either numb everything I was feeling or excite it.
Excitement, you could say was my preferred drug of choice at that stage – pushing and pushing until some kind of supposed peak would occur. That peak would be swiftly followed by a lull or barrage of self-doubt, self-loathing and sometimes depressive episodes where I’d withdraw from everyone around me and feel incapacitated at work. I’d eat copious amounts of chocolate to feed this addiction to the mood wave too. Once I ate two family blocks of chocolate as it was the only way I thought I could stop the sadness I was feeling about how I was treating myself. A perpetual cycle: up and down, up and down. That’s how it went for most of my life.
Then, I fell pregnant with my boyfriend at the time. It happened when I was at the end of a 6-month trip around North and South America. When I’d left London, l had left a job and a home (albeit one where I was still living out of a suitcase). When I returned to London I had a credit card debt, I was pregnant, I had no job or home. My relationship was coming to an end. For all intents and purposes, I had no physical security. I couldn’t get welfare for the short term as I wasn’t a UK resident. My situation was indicative of how I’d been treating myself for much of my life, the end result of a barrage of self-abuse and disconnection from what I innately knew was true. That is, that we are a result of the energetic quality we have chosen to align to. My alignments to this point were like a slap in the face that I could no longer ignore.
At seven months pregnant, I returned to Australia. Enter a new baby and Universal Medicine. Within a couple of weeks of my daughter being born, I was introduced to the works of Serge Benhayon. A purple book and audio interviews literally knocked on my door as a UK Universal Medicine student’s daughter came to stay where I was living. At first, I couldn’t get my head around what was written in the book however I was blown away by the audio interview. Here was a man speaking the absolute truth about how the world is – everything I had been trying to suppress knowing for all these years. At age 30 I was introduced to a way of being and enriching my life that didn’t involve injecting myself with whatever gave me what I needed to maintain the excitement of the rollercoaster of life.
I had searched the spiritual new age for inspiration – albeit half-heartedly – in the hope it would help me get out of the mouse wheel of ups and downs. Nothing had resonated strongly. It was all theory and conjecture on what ‘could be’ if only I did a little better. What Serge Benhayon presented were the facts. Not that I could say that at the time. It’s only through connecting to and living the Ageless Wisdom myself that I can feel them as fact – very matter of fact facts – that only with a loving dedication to nurturing my body and being could I enjoy me in life, whatever life brought back to the table.
Life became about honouring the qualities that little girl (who let in the universe via her star gazing) knew all along – qualities that when confirmed from within, have been able to be lived on the outer. For example, despite being exceptionally non-committed to life in terms of keeping a job or home for much longer than a year or two, I have been working for an employer for six years now, who very much values my commitment and dedication to my work, allows me to work in a way that works both for me, the company and my family. I have a house full of furniture, which may sound normal and simple enough but when you’ve essentially been living out of a suitcase for 10 years, it’s something to very much appreciate. Not that I define success by material wealth but there is a level of respect I have established for money since returning to the teachings. Everything matters and looking after every detail of life has been a wonderful re-learning as I feel re-fuelled and fired up when I address what’s draining me – whether that be the practicals like finance or the energetics like how someone is treating me or I, them.
Out of Hiding
Expressing with others – be that physically through a hug or speaking about how I am feeling – has been a huge joy as I open up more and more to my own and others’ love. It’s difficult to put into words what it’s like to feel the freedom of allowing myself to speak the truth I know after having held it back for so long. I’m certainly not perfect with my expression and don’t always deliver truth but what I have been able to connect to and deliver has ignited a love for humanity again. I had chosen not to know how much I was holding people to ransom for the tiniest imperfections, prior to re-learning about the intricacies of energy and its many, many implications when used unwisely.
Now, because of Serge’s unmatched dedication to consistently delivering the truth of energy, I have been able to tap into what I know to be true – why I’ve chosen what I’ve chosen in the past and the reason behind what’s played out in my life the way it has. It’s beautiful. Being responsible and owning my past choices rather than blaming others or continuing to hide is not just a blessing for myself but all others I interact with.
Connecting To and Expressing My Innate Qualities
There’s so much to appreciate now in my life. Self-doubt has gone from 10 to 1 on the Richter scale. Gone are the days where I’d overthink an outfit or something I wanted or something I’d said. Gone are the days of cringing at my every spoken word. Gone are the days of wishing for an invisible cloak to wear.
My relationship with food is much more loving as I generally eat what my body needs, not what my tastebuds or emotional state crave. The control of ‘eating the right thing’ has gone and I’m enjoying getting to know how true a friend my body is with its gift of telling me the truth about everything I place in my mouth.
My relationships are all stronger and more honest than ever before – I’m more forthcoming with what I’m feeling and much more understanding with where others are at. I love talking or even just sitting with people when we both just allow ourselves to be – no competing for the limelight, no overpowering the other, no withdrawal – just enjoying being with another. This is somewhat of a revelation for me, given I’d have happily lived in a cave once upon a time to avoid feeling all of our collective imperfections. The depth of appreciation for myself has allowed me to adore and appreciate others regardless of their supposed strengths or weaknesses.
I need less stimulation than ever before to work solidly through the day (there’s no extreme sports, caffeine, chocolate, drugs or alcohol in my life) and there are fewer ups and down – if there are any, they are short-lived and not extreme. Where once I would have run laps around Greenwich Park in the ice-cold of the English winter to numb my way out of my anxiety, I now go for a gentle walk and use it to clear my mind and reconnect to my body.
I bring purpose into my work and my everyday life– the purpose that each step I take can bring more light to the world. For example, where once I would have questioned my capability and ruminated over a report to write, I now appreciate myself before I’ve even started and am open to other’s support which allows the whole process to flow and come together much easier (and it takes a lot less time as a result). Also, how I collaborate with my team is from a place of inclusivity, deep care, playfulness and true support so that they have the space to expand in what they are doing and expressing. Encouragement, understanding and check-ins are part of my everyday life with my colleagues.
I have a beautiful daughter who blows me away every day with how much love and wisdom she brings to my life but also many others. Just this week she lovingly – and with such precision – nailed the energy I was in around avoiding something and why I was doing it. It didn’t come with judgement or a need to change it. Just pure reflection and support. This allowed me to feel more fully the choices I’d been making in the lead up to that moment.
There is no doubt that the Ageless Wisdom teachings have enriched both our lives. These days I don’t consider myself as a ‘single parent’ because through healing past hurts I have been able to allow in and out a tremendous amount of love and support. My daughter has more ‘parents’ and ‘grandparents’ than she could have hoped for and whilst I certainly take a lead role in her parent world she is as equally open to giving and receiving the love on offer from a wider circle of support.
Life today is a very far cry from the lost and meandering years of my life. More than ever I am living what I am designed to bring – the reflection of the universe’s divine order, magic and mind-boggling wisdom… the wonderment of the stars lived on earth.
By Nicki, NSW