February 1


Is it mine to carry?

By IsayaBelle

February 1, 2024

aphrodite, Hera, hestia, lifestory, LivingaGoddessLife

Life is short.
Too short sometimes.
I know, I know, I’m enunciating platitudes.
And yet.
It’s so fricking true.
Last Saturday, my bestie’s husband died.
After a short, yet painstakingly long disease.
At 56 years old.
I’m 56.
So that can be it?
Life can be over.
Just like that.
Life can be short.
Waking call to be, do and have whatever I’m dreaming of…
Because there might be no tomorrow.
Yes, cliches, I know.
Some days they hit hard.

These last few years I’ve been journeying from one grief to another.
My husband who I grieved even though he finally survived…
My father …
My mother in law…
3 or 4 close friends…
Too many deaths.
Too much grief.
It has felt like waves.
Every time I felt like one wave was over me, like I could breathe again…
There came another one.
And grief knows no timeline.
The sadness is relentless, and hits in unexpected moments, in unexpected ways.
Like waves.
And each grief has felt worse than the previous one, if that makes sense.
Like I’m now walking on the earth surrounded by ghosts.
I have so many of their objects in my house…
The memories are everywhere.

I’m beginning to feel like I almost know more dead people than I know alive people.
I’m guessing this is part of the process of ageing and I do appreciate that.
I get to still be here. I get to love and live and do stuff… and be places.
And I am grateful, don’t get me wrong.

But it feels heavy some days, like today, when the cold grey winter weather seems to be mourning as well, when all life seems to have been swallowed in the fog, by the fog.
It feels heavy.

And I have to make myself remember.
It’s not mine to carry.
Not all of it is mine.
Most of it actually isn’t.

And although I have to allow myself to feel my feelings, to experience my emotions (Hey Goddess Hera, thanks for the reminder!), although some of these feelings are heavy… I also need to remember that I am alive.
More platitudes, I know.
But in these dark and foggy moments, platitudes are what keep me standing, sorry - not sorry.
And tomorrow the sun might shine and the weight will feel lighter.
And tomorrow I might be full on writing a completely different article.

But today, it feels heavy.

Part of the reason it does feel heavy might be because not all of it is mine.
We so often mix up our emotions with those of the people around us, as empaths, or simply as humans.
When someone I love suffers, I can feel their pain too.
Their pain.
Not mine.

So often those two get mixed.
And it’s my job to do the separation, to create boundaries that let me experience my emotions, not everybody else’s.
Because I can be of no help, I have no bandwidth to support anyone else when I am engulfed in their pain.
I need to be strong enough to hold them.
I need to be vulnerable enough to be compassionate.
A very thin line.
A balance that is like a dance between the other and myself, between their pain and mine.

And how do I do that?
My recipe?

I retreat inwards and check out myself, I withdraw from interactions with others for a while and give myself some love, while working on these boundaries of self-love as I like to call them.
I connect with my Sacred Self, asking Goddess Hestia for help and support.
I take shelter for a minute and breathe.
I pray. I journal. I write this post.
I take care of myself in the cracks of taking care of others.
I make sure I am not immersed in somebody else’s pain 24/7.
That would be a formula for disaster, both for me and for them.
If you’re curious about this Goddess connection and how it helps me navigate the ups and downs of life… I’m releasing, on the 19th of February, a short program called Connected, Aligned, Sacred with Hestia. More info here: https://isayabelle.com/connected-aligned-sacred-sp

While I’m on the topic of drowning in someone else’s emotions, I want to discuss another way we often get caught up in somebody else’s shit.
Is it mine?
This another place where one can so easily get engulfed in someone else’s reality, simply ignoring one’s own.
Whether we are talking about sex… This is not about consent, which deserves a whole other article, this is about not knowing, deep down, if I’m really saying yes when I do.
About being so well educated in people pleasing that I’m cut from my own desire, that I don’t even really understand if and when I experience desire…
Whether we are talking about food… and I’m never really sure I am hungry and for what… Because I grew up learning to eat certain foods at certain times…
Getting to understand my desires (in food, drinks, sex … and so much more!) and to separate those desires from yours… And again it is about boundaries.
But once again the thing here is to understand, to learn and to know what is mine and what isn’t.

And to make sure that I do not let anything enter me (see the sexual innuendo here?) that I don’t agree with, that I don’t want to take in, to accept, whether it is food, feelings or physical …
On top of that issue comes the timeline.
Sometimes it is about the time.
Not now.
And women being cyclic, timing is everything!
When I’m not aligned with your desires, with your demands, it’s not about letting it fall away or letting it go, it’s about saying no, not now, later.
What am I letting in and when?
Is it what I desire?
No is a complete sentence.
Not now is another one.
Seems easy enough.

And yet.
And yet.
It is always about knowing one’s self. And knowing what I want. What is mine. And what is not.
It’s not about "throwing up" or aggressively rejecting you, it’s about knowing how to simply not let it in.
And there comes Goddess Aphrodite who will hold me in beauty and remind me who I am, what Goddess I am, teach me self-love as a religion and give me permission, if I need it from someone else, to say no.

So I journey and walk and grow and learn who I am and what is mine to carry and what isn’t.
And learn to build those solid and loving boundaries that let me be me, while being available and capable of holding space for you too.

So much for today ...

I would be so happy to hear from you about all that.
Thank you in advance for your comment.
See you soon, for my next online adventures!
Until then I send you love, light and gratitude.

  • Dearest Isaya, my heart hurts for you as I, too, navigate the waves of grief and can empathise with so much of what you shared herein. 56 is too young; but we are at the age where we must walk the shadowlines of life and death, and grateful for each day that we awake to the sun rising.

    This really spoke to me: “learn who I am and what is mine to carry and what isn’t”; I struggle with deciphering what is mine to carry, and what isn’t. So hard as chronic people-pleasers to recognise and prioritise our own needs, wants, desires. I really liked your sharings on what you do for self-care as you navigate the pathways of learning who you are, while juggling the minutae of life (and death).

    Sending you much love, and to your dear friend and her family also at this time of unbearable loss x

  • {"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}

    Join my Facebook group

    Living a Goddess Life