I Didn’t “Burn Out” — I Lit Up.
Fundamentally, I believe in the goodness of people. I believe that every human has the magic of a unique soul, and thereby a calling and a purpose in shaping the world. I believe this to be true of even the most seemingly dangerous, physically disadvantaged, or mentally challenged of our species. I believe we have forgotten our collective responsibility to one another, forgotten that we require each other for health and healing, and become too visionary in our images of success, so much so that we are in the wake of a cultural “lostness.”
I have been in the process of unwinding my own understanding of what it means to me to live a free life while making conscious and responsible contributions to society. The work is unclean, ambiguous, and gut-wrenching.
As our collective underbelly has lifted, so has my own.
I have been significantly more lost than found this year. My 2020 caked in the deepest shadows of my life’s history and shame — much that I didn’t even know existed. With humility, I am honored to navigate my grief.
There is an unlimited pool of humans that I have gratitude for in the unpacking of my story, my trauma, and my clarity in aspiration. None compare to the shared learning I have experienced with my students.
If I am a plant, my kids are my vitamins, my minerals, my soil, and my roots, and I have been dying without them. I need them to be myself. My kids are my community, my anchor, my purpose, and my home.
I left the education system because I could not feign complacency in my participation of oppression; I could no longer teach what society said my kids “needed to learn.” I didn’t burn out — I lit up — and I started my business because I wanted to change the world for my kids; I wanted to help people understand injustice within themselves so that they could move justice outside of themselves, and move healing and liberation for our world collectively. I wanted my kids to experience a conscious culture in their lifetime. I wanted holistic reparation.
I started my business with a sea of callings, and in the listening, the voices have washed out my own.
“HOW VERY WHITE OF ME TO THINK I COULD FIX THE WORLD.
HOW VERY SUPREMACIST OF ME TO ATTEMPT TO DO IT ALONE.
HOW VERY AFRAID I MUST HAVE BEEN TO LOSE SITE OF MY MISSION.”
And this is where I am.
Unwinding, unlearning, and perpetually growing.
I need to find a way back to my kids. I need to continue to move the dismantling of systems of oppression, with their contribution. I need to serve them, such that I can continue to inspire and work within the greatest parts of myself.
By no means does this mean I need to abandon my business. I love my clients, and I know my service is needed. I also know that I will show up better and in more integrity in connection with a wider community. I need diversity to feel safe; I need variety to feel inspired; I need moving parts for me to “work.”
I have been stuck in the falsity that “narrowing my service would help me focus,” — when really, honoring my focus would help me serve.
I am clear on my mission of collective healing through liberation, and I am done limiting myself on how that vision plays out. I am setting firm boundaries around my attachment to perfectionizing my process for growth. I am accepting that finding oneself and losing oneself are, and must be, one and the same thing, and that there’s nothing wrong with me for my frequent moments of feeling lost.
I am giving myself permission to focus on the big picture.
I am giving myself permission to live in grace.
I am giving myself permission to claim my masterpiece, and continue to learn my art.
I am giving myself permission to create infinite iterations, and to critique only for growth.
I am giving myself permission to attach to community and collective results.
I am giving myself permission to harmonize…and to sing my gutsy song.