What To Know When You Don’t Feel Like Yourself

I spent a good chunk of my postpartum journey feeling not like myself and more like there was something wrong with me.

I felt kind of like a stranger in my own body and in my own mind, and that the Jen I knew and loved had somehow gone somewhere. I felt that because I had such scary thoughts that I was a horrible mom and a terrible person. I thought that who I was wasn’t the Mom I pictured I’d be when first becoming pregnant and I thought that who I was wasn’t Me, the Jen I knew who loved to dance the night away to a good country tune and a cold glass of rose.

I remember feeling like my baby would be better off with someone else, someone who instinctively knew how to be a “good” mom, and someone who wasn’t going “crazy,” because I was sure that I wasn’t and was, both those things.

The thing is, what I have learned through massive anxiety, many panic attacks, and lots of support is that I was wrong. I was really wrong. I hadn’t ever, and never will go anywhere, (and never will you) because who we are is stable, and everything else is illusory.

Let me explain…

Underneath our layered thinking lies a river of endless loving joy. In this river is where true life resides. The truth of reality, reality itself. Love. Peace. Wisdom. Clarity. Everything. This is who we are at our deepest level, who we are on our best day when we truly do feel like ourselves, the version of ourselves that feels familiar, the one we know and are friends with.

It’s that warm feeling we get when our minds clear and peace shines through. It’s that giddiness we feel when we see our loved one after a long wait. It’s that aha moment we’ve been waiting for. It’s that good good feeling we get when our little ones lay their heads on our shoulders.

That is who we are. We were made and built to feel good, like that. We were
made and built to swim freely in our river. We were put on this earth with everything we need to live from our soul, to feel like ourselves. Our emotions, our minds, and our spirits have what it takes to see us through this life in a joyous way, and the only thing we ever have to do in not stand in our own way.

Of course from time to time we will, because we’re human and no human is perfect. We get caught in our stories, our minds, and our emotions, all of us, all the time, but we are built to bounce back.

Our minds were built to clear, our hearts were made to beat, our lungs were built to breathe and our spirits are that river of joy that resides deep within, deep within us and it never goes anywhere. it is that part of us that makes us feel like we’re at home.

We just have to know that it’s there, always, guiding us through the muddy waters of our minds ideas even though we sometimes lose sight of it and we sometimes feel lost. So please, fear not my dear warriors, you are still there, underneath your confusion and despair. You are still who you know you are, even though you don’t always feel like yourself. And when you don’t feel like yourself, it certainly does not mean that you’ve gone anywhere, or that you have somehow morphed into this crazy person you’re afraid of being, not, at, all. It simply means that you have ventured into your thinking and that thinking has taken shape in your line of vision and that is what you are currently seeing. But like I mentioned above, who we are is stable and that thinking in our line of vision is unstable and illusory. Thoughts are fleeting, always changing, and never permanent. Picture it like this: when that thinking takes shape in your imagination and everything looks and feels real and scary, it’s like you’re wearing 3D glasses at the cinema, only you’re forgetting that all you have to do is take the glasses off and things will look different.

It seems as though from time to time every human gets caught believing who they are is their minds’ ideas and they innocently get caught leaving their river of joy, their heart, their love within, and they innocently forget that they are what they need, they are their answers, they are their own best friend.. and that is okay, because that is simply part of being human.

But I’m here to remind you that the design works well, our human design, our hearts and our minds. Our inherent design is built to allow us to think and to feel, and to be safe through the feeling of our thinking. It is built in such a way that we can think and feel anything because thoughts and emotions are safe.

They are universal energy passing through our physical bodies and we are simply feeling that energy as whirlpools in our river, but like all whirlpools they eventually dissipate (naturally on their own) and the river returns to stillness.

And all we have to do is see that we are the river and whirlpools will come, and whirlpools will go. We are the river and we will return to peace.

Because we are as much peace as the water is the river.

So please my dear warriors, the next time you feel like you’ve left your river of joy and feel like a stranger to yourself remember this:

Today you are YOU, that is TRUER than true, there is no one alive who is YOUER than YOU.- Dr. Seuss



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