What You Presently Have In Your Life Is A Direct Reflection Of Your Ability To Receive
The embrace was similar to what the trip had been: slow with a quickened nervous energy, tangled with images from the past, a sense of the surreal mixed with peace.
It’s hard to know exactly what to do with a get-together almost exactly eight years after our relationship ended, what the bigger purpose was, how it connected to this fibroid growth inside of me that seemed so out of the blue but really had been in development for at least a year and a half.
All I knew when I received the text inviting me to New York was that I needed to say yes. I needed to receive.
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I’ve struggled with receiving for just about as long as I can remember. Whether it’s a compliment or a check that I’m owed, my automatic reaction has been to avert my eyes and mumble something that has absolutely nothing to do with what I am presently receiving.
It’s one of my biggest regrets, taking so long to get comfortable with receiving. If I’m honest, it’s only in the past year where I’ve settled into it not as something that people feel put out doing for me, but rather something that they are honored to do – much like I am (most of the time) when I do for others.
Many women have layers upon layers of the “why” they struggle to receive: we’ve been conditioned to give; a millennia worth of insults and ostracization has been heaped on females who haven’t given what was expected of them. We are mothers who are supposed to find our happiness in giving to our children and husbands; we are whores if we accept too many gifts from men. We are deemed unspiritual and capitalist hustlers if use the system to our benefit, all the while men are free and allowed to take whatever they want. We feel we “owe” if we are given something. It runs deep.
As an independent woman, it always made sense that clear boundaries for me meant paying my own way for everything and not gliding into this tangled web of what underlies much of giving and receiving. One particular relationship in my mid-20s with a much older man sealed the deal for me in not wanting to participate in this age-old dilemma.
But in the process, I’ve cut off the healing that can occur when we open up to receiving, trusting that while it is never without “strings” per se, that doesn’t mean it can’t benefit both parties. In fact, some of the deepest healing can come from allowing another to take care of you in a non-prescribed way.
What we do in the world as women (and sometimes men, and non-binary too, but I want to focus on the issue as I see it with those who identify as women) is give out in ways to our families, our community, and even our work where we don’t get ‘paid’ what we’re worth. And we feel this injustice on multiple levels, including in the biggest way: our health.
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Three days before the text, I found out I have a tennis-ball sized uterine fibroid. I have since found out that many women will have a fibroid – or several – before they hit menopause, but few will know because they don’t grow large enough to be detected. Still, women crawled out of the woodwork when I mentioned on Instagram that I had discovered this fibroid, telling me their stories of facing their own – sometimes twice the size of mine – and the surgeries that accompanied them.
At that point, I was unsure if I would be able to get a laparoscopic myomectomy, or if I would need to get a partial laparoscopic hysterectomy. I don’t want children, but I didn’t want to lose my uterus, and face the surgery’s accompanying “possible side effects.”
Facing the unknown, the offer of a rendezvous in NYC was tempting. And pretty much exactly what I needed.
Believe me, there were probably a million reasons to say no, of which some old friends were sure to bring up: should I really take off in the middle of the week with everything I have going on? How would my fibroid respond? What if my heart got too involved? What if it ended up being awkward as hell??
But I knew this was a test to see if I would be open to receiving when I absolutely positively needed it the most. I understood that this fibroid was less about something that happened physically because of wrong dietary choices or even chemicals in my environment, and was more about feelings of safety, security, and yes, the struggle to wholeheartedly receive. And at base, no matter our ups and downs over the past eight years, it was coming from a trusted source.
And I trusted myself to know I could trust this.
So I said, “I’m in.” And I went, and without the use of substances, we worked through the nerves, the once-again fledgling intimacy, the issues both of us carried from our lives into the situation. We used the salve of embracing our shit and speaking honestly about it all. We tapped back into some of what once was, and reminisced on what we had shared when we needed to find moments of connection.
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In this embrace, I learned that there are many moments where we are being offered just what we need when we need it most, but we are too closed off to receiving to see them. If you feel like you aren’t getting enough of what you need in your life, ask yourself these questions:
1) Have I asked for what I want? If the answer is yes, and you still don’t see it, here’s the follow-up: Have I shouted from the rooftops, been in a heap on the floor, threatened the Universe with some serious screams asking for what I want? (sometimes, we gotta go there to get shit done).
2) Do you find yourself thinking, “I don’t have time for that” or “It’s not fair to my family if I decide to do this” or “I need to focus on this” or even, “I’m too tired to do anything else”? Sometimes, saying these things to yourself is valid and true and exactly what you need to do. Other times, it’s not – it’s simply limited thinking often based on what others want from/for you. Check in to see the difference.
3) What desires am I hiding from myself? What have I told myself I shouldn’t want or shouldn’t have? What old thought patterns are hindering me from seeing and receiving more of what I want in my life?
These questions are at the core of truly embracing ourselves, and experiencing more of the life we want to be living. That’s why we begin with them in the first part of section 8, Embrace, in Sensual Magic for Women 35-50. At this point in the program, we have learned all about how to nourish our bodies with food and movement and particular supplements and when necessary, bioidentical hormones. We’ve learned what it means to be a sensual woman at the most potent time of our lives, with ourselves, and with others. We’ve learned we can find the divine in sex. But to truly integrate it all, we must embrace it all. And that means getting really clear on what our body and soul wants for us at this point.
Practice receiving. I promise it’ll get you a hell of a lot closer to where you want to be.
This fall, we will weave together a powerful journey into what makes us who we are – and who we want to be during this epic transitional period of our lives – in the Sensual Magic for Women 35-50 program. Today is the final day for Tier 1 pricing, a massive savings over the regular energy exchange. To learn more about the program or to enroll, go here.