“Through darkness comes light, through fear comes love, and through pain comes triumph.”
— LILLY ATLAST
I often post about ‘exploring your shadow side’, ‘leaning into the discomfort’, and ‘going through the darkness’. What exactly does this mean and do I practice what I preach?
I would like to start off by saying that everything I post about has some relation to my own life. Whatever is present in my life at that moment gets condensed into an Instagram post and presented as an offering to hopefully give insight to others experiencing something similar.
So, when I tell you to go through the darkness, it is because I TOO have gone through the darkness and I’m here to tell you it’s WORTH it.
My first experience with this was in my mid 20’s. I was a party animal in my teens and early adulthood. I LOVED being drunk, it was a way to be free of my pain and anxiety and let my ‘true self ‘ shine. I loved that there was no second guessing any of my actions, just completely unfiltered behaviour, with the excuse of ‘Oh well, I was drunk’.
It was around age 24, when I started to notice my drunk persona going from super-happy-silly-funtime-Mischaela, to RAGE MISCHAELA. I was getting ANGRY, being mean and combative to people close to me, picking fights with inanimate objects (walls, lampposts), and tearing my apartment apart, . Something dark was bubbling up to the surface and I knew I needed help figuring this out. Six sessions of therapy later and I’m releasing decades of pain that had been covered by anger and was just sitting there simmering, waiting to be released.
I had been so sure that confronting that pain would result in me completely falling apart and never putting the pieces back together. Instead, I cried heaving sobs for about 15 minutes and that was that. I leaned into and felt the pain that had been stored in me since childhood, and I released it. I left feeling lighter than I had in years and from then on I no longer got drunk and angry.
This experience stayed with me as a beautifully simplistic example of moving THROUGH the darkness. It won’t always look this way; healing time varies depending on you and your scenario but staying the course will always get you through.
Any time in my life I find myself behaving in a way that I’m not proud of, I know that there is something to examine. I may ignore it for awhile, but eventually I recognize that some dark part of myself needs a light shone on it. That light has come in many forms, meditation, journaling, reiki, counselling, coaching or the plant medicines, and I always eventually see my way through the darkness and back into the light.
The thing is, there’s no avoiding it. You can try to ignore it or distract yourself but that darkness will continue to fester inside you until it is released. You have the choice of whether you want these bottled emotions to manifest as misplaced anger, bitterness and anxiety, OR you can release them in a healthy and intentional way, providing you with a valuable lesson in the process.
The only beneficial way through it is straight through it. It will be hard, and scary but you are stronger than you think and so ready for change. There are incredibly compassionate healers out there to guide you through the process, and on the other side is freedom, lightness, and countless new perspectives and possibilities!
If this speaks to you, message me now for more info. I’d love to help guide you through the darkness towards a lighter and happier you.