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  • Writer's pictureBree

Embarking on the Radical Journey of Shadow Work // Part 2

In virtually all of my relationships with men, two of the most common themes were a lack of trust & a lack of respect. I never trusted a single man I’d dated before I met my husband nor did I trust myself in these relationships because so often, I’d become addicted to the drama that for so long I’d mistaken for passion. I was addicted to incessant cycles of breaking up followed by making up and had grown quite accustomed to all the mind games, all of the emotional games and everything in between.

When I finally walked away from my last relationship towards the woman I was always and divinely created to be, I chose to sift through and unpack why I kept encountering similar people in different relationships (romanic, familiar, platonic & professional). When I began my journey through shadow work, I realized that while growing up, I’d never really experienced many relationships that weren't tainted in some way by emotional manipulation and/or trauma.

So that's what I kept attracting.That's what I continued manifesting in the relationships of my adulthood. That’s all I believed that I was capable of experiencing because it’s the only thing I'd known.

My shadow work caused me to reveal certain truths that I'd neglected to confront for most of my life which were:

I grew up accepting verbal abuse because I thought those were normal expressions of love.

I grew up apologizing for having feelings that I now know I was entitled to.

I grew up being bullied about my looks, my mother’s career, her wealth & my privilege so I had extremely low self esteem that manifested in decades of seeking toxic validation from external entities.

I grew up questioning what partnership really looked like because with divorced parents, I’d never seen it.

I didn’t have “standards” because I didn’t even have standards for myself. I didn’t know what I wanted out of life or from myself so how could I standardize the respect & emotional support that I wanted from other people?

All of these elements of my existence, buried away in my shadow self festered and grew until they continued manifesting in all of my relationships from adolescence to young adulthood.

I realized that my shadow self was filled with anxiety, habits of overextension, fear of failure & disappointment, deeply-rooted trust issues, fear of abandonment, & post-traumatic stress. My shadow self was filled with decades-old hurt, pain & heartbreak that simply had never really been acknowledged, addressed nor healed. These feelings were ignored & overlooked for years before I finally began to recognize patterns of my own behavior that were continued manifestations of these unhealed feelings.

I realized that at some point, I needed to finally take accountability; for my past, my present & my future.

Once these feelings that made up my shadow self had been sorted through & identified, the path towards healing became perfectly clear. The veil that had once hidden my visualizations were drawn back, my intentions were set & my transformation began.

It began the moment I could clearly visualize exactly what I wanted out of life, what I wanted for myself & what I wanted for my future. I could finally see me...all of me...with all of my flaws included. Although I could finally define the emotions that made up my shadow self, acknowledge them and even appreciate them, I made the liberating decision to no longer allow any of these experiences to dictate the life I wanted, the life I deserved and the life that I was created to live. I had been awakened. I wanted different.

I didn't want a job, I wanted a career. I didn't want a boyfriend or a husband; rather, I wanted a partner who would be a perfect reflection of how deeply & intentionally I loved myself. I wanted family close but if that meant that there had to be boundaries, so be it. I wanted a small tribe with solid ass friends who would be by my side at all times, challenging me, pushing me, encouraging me and praying for me as I did them.

And that's when things shifted. That's when the transformation began...


Comment, "I'm ready" for the last post of this series!!

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