Grateful & Growing: February 2017

February has been difficult.

But it’s also been fun.

It’s been enlivening.

It’s been healing.

There is so much that I feel grateful for right now. My favourite band are back. My best friend has been to visit. I have finally been put on a waiting list for therapy again.

I have not felt good in myself, but I have felt so fortunate.

I had one particular experience in February which filled me with gratitude. I did something I’ve wanted to do for years – I went caving.

Of course, on, the day of the trip to the caves, it was snowing. I am not somebody who copes well in the cold. At all.

It was not ideal. The cold made my fingers stiff and this was immediately a huge problem – after abseiling down into the first cave, I could not unhook my harness from the rope (and I was the first person in the cave, so nobody could help me). Naturally, I panicked. I felt stupid, I felt weak, I felt helpless. I thought “why am I doing this? I shouldn’t be doing this!”

But guess what?

I got through it.

And honestly, this was a recurring theme throughout the day. As we approached extra tight spaces, I panicked out of fear that I would not be able to fit through. But I reminded myself that if I didn’t try, I would be stuck there, so I pushed on. Surprise surprise, I fit. I panicked when ledges were difficult to grasp, fearing I was not strong or balanced enough to hold on and stay upright. But I did.

Every time that I looked back and realised I’d made it past another difficult thing, I could hardly believe it.

I looked back at these narrow ledges and tiny holes and jagged footholds and had to realise something. I DID THAT. I JUST FUCKING DID THAT.

This was what I was most in awe of. The caves were spectacular, but it was the capability of my body which truly amazed me.

On this day I was actually IN my body, and so able to appreciate it. I got to experience what it can do – what I can do! I broke my own limits. It was anxiety provoking in multiple ways. But I proved to my anxiety that I am stronger – physically and mentally – than it would like me to believe.

discomfort-growth

I’m grateful for the experience and I’m grateful to myself for giving it a go, in spite of my trepidation. ‘Discomfort = growth’ is a statement which, when I first came across it, made me uncomfortable. I believe that our comfort zones exist for a reason. I believe that we have the right to comfort. I believe in boundaries, and rest. I believe that in looking after yourself before anything else. But I also believe that sometimes we place limits on ourselves and call them boundaries. I also believe that sometimes our self-protection is self-sabotage. I also believe that sometimes we need to push ourselves beyond our comfort zone, and I believe that when we do this, we have the power to blow our own fucking minds.

 

What are you feeling grateful for right now? Has this month brought anything to the forefront! I’d love to hear what you’re thankful for – let me know in the comments, or tweet me @hurricanegrrrl

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