I seem to have been faced with tough decisions these past few weeks. I’m going to share two of those and step into the arena, as Brene Brown says, and practice being vulnerable.
As some of you know my sister died a week ago Tuesday by her own choosing. She lived in a right to die state and chose when and how she was ending this life and moving on to whatever comes next. None of us really know the answer to that until we actually die, so it’s kind of a mystery in many ways, which I like. I like the not knowing. I’ve been learning to embrace the unknown and relax into not always having to have everything figured out.
Caterina, my daughter, and I were supposed to fly out there to my sister’s the Saturday before and be there with her when she drank the elixir and ended her life. We were also going to help her sort through her stuff and be there for support for her and her son she lived with. Everything was good until Friday morning, before the Saturday that we were to get on a plane and fly. I woke up in a state of anxiety. Not too bad, just like a low-grade fever of anxiety and I knew something wasn’t feeling right. As I began my meditation I asked the Universe for guidance and I used my clarity essential oil and it didn’t take too long before tears were coming to the surface and I found myself crying. Clarity came very quickly. So did the list of “sensible” excuses, you know the ones you can use that really do make sense in your logical brain, but your heart knows you’re just using them to get out of doing something you really don’t want to do but you can’t speak your truth for whatever reason so you follow the list of excuses? Yes, that list.
I have been changing. I wanted to speak my truth. I needed to take a few moments and clarify what my truth was. I sat in silence after completing my morning meditation and the tears kept coming. The truth was…my truth was actually very simple. I just did not want to watch my sister die. That was my truth. I owned it. I accepted it and I honored myself for being able to name it. Deep breath. The hardest decision, the toughest decision I’ve ever had to make in my life had to come next, I had to tell Susan I wasn’t coming. That’s when the storytelling started in my head. She’s going to hate me. She’s going to hate me but say it’s ok. She’s going to lose it on the phone with me and say all the hurtful things we’ve never said to each other. She’s going to scream and cry and holler. I’m going to hate me. People will judge me. The list went on. This started early Friday morning. And the storytelling went on until I actually was able to talk to her, not until late afternoon on Friday. So I made the phone call.
None of the stories I told myself were true. She was very ok with my decision and honored me for being able to speak my truth and put action behind it. See that’s who my sister and I were with one another. We were ok with however the other one needed to show up at any given time, or not show up, physically in this particular instance. It was all unfolding in perfect order. And it was still one of the hardest decisions, one of the toughest decisions I’ve ever had to make in my life.
The second tough decision came yesterday as I decided I was not going to the live event for my graduation from the Institute of the Psychology of Eating in Denver next Thursday-Sunday. There again the excuse list started, with, it was going to be over $1000 for the hotel room for Caterina and me in Denver. My garden is just now taking off and I couldn’t trust anyone to keep it watered (that was one of the stories I told myself). The underlying truth, my truth, my knowing, is I just want some down time. I don’t want one more thing that I have to do. I didn’t want to get in the truck next Wednesday morning at 5 a.m. and drive to Denver. I needed to listen to my heart. I needed to hear what my innermost Amy was wanting. Even though part of me was screaming you have to do this, you can’t miss this event. And so I made the phone call to Caterina. Risking disappointment from yet another very important person in my life, my daughter. But I just couldn’t take that trip either. I owned my decision.
My inner voice has grown exponentially the last couple of weeks. I feel different, more confident, surer of myself, and stronger in a way.
Sometimes the hardest and the right thing are indeed the same. In my heart, I know both decisions were the right decisions for me. And they were two of the toughest decisions to make in my life yet. People will judge me and that’s ok. I am learning what it really means to be true to myself, even when it is the toughest thing to do.
Eat well, live well, be well.