What is hell? Hell is a perception in our minds. We all envision it differently. Growing up I imagined a dark place burning with fire. Souls burning and crying from pain. Up above was a God, my creator, watching it all happen. If I did not follow the word of The Bible exactly this is where I would end up. Take a second, soak this in and understand the fear this created in a little girl. Add to it the anger my Dad, a Vietnam Vet with PTSD, filled my home with – I was in my own hell.
A Course In Miracles brings it all clear to me now though.
“The journey into the darkness has been long and cruel, and you have gone deep into it.”
I have lived a life in fear. That little scared girl has been crying out for 36 years in many ways. Luckily part of me was able to place a protection around me – an armor. I wore this armor proudly for a long time. I was not a bully but a “strong woman not to be crossed”. However, armor rusts and breaks. No one is meant to live armored. Armor also traps in the love that we all want to give. Armor traps the light of God that is within you. This has been my life for over 20 years.
I have turned all of this negative emotional energy inward. Bipolar 2 was the latest in this emotional energy building my own hell. My own abyss. My own rabbit hole. My own glass castle amidst many facets of hell. I have been my own worst enemy. I have criticized myself to the point I have a deep rooted belief that I am not good enough for myself, for my family, for my clients, for anyone.
My demons are my fears, anxiety, feelings of inadequacy – all demons knocking on the door. These are demons created from my past. Yes I have walked a long way into the depths of hell. I remember standing in my dining room asking my husband, “Why would God make me suffer so much? Suffer, not just hurt, but suffer.”
Weeks later I found faith in a God that is in me – a light that will show me through the valley of hell. A miracle happened. I was on my knees in my studio crying and for the first time praying to God. I thanked him for all of my blessings but asked him to shine his light on my path. He did. A once angry and scared little girl accepted help from the world. Opportunities opened up one by one – a divine series of events. All of a sudden I wasn’t too proud to ask for help. I wasn’t ashamed of my weaknesses. I discovered a light and a peace. I surrendered to God. No medication or therapy can bring me the peace I find in prayer, meditation and when I’m with my spiritual family.
I don’t think I would have really truly understood this miracle if I hadn’t read A Return To Love. Marianne phrased it all as if it was my own biography.
It felt during those years as though my skull had exploded. It seemed as though thousands of little pieces of it had shot into outer space. Very slowly, they began to come together again. But while my emotional brine was so exposed, it seemed to be rewired, like I’d had some kind of Psychic surgery. I felt like I became a different person. ….. Until your knees finally hit the floor, you’re just playing at life. The moment of surrender is not when life is over. It’s when it begins.
I still have a lot of work to do and not our of the valley of the shadow yet but there is a light that guides me daily. Thank you to the universe.