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  • julienaylorcounsel

When the memories hit. . . . . . . . . .

Last weekend I went swimming to a local leisure centre.  As I walked towards the pool area, I felt a visceral memory surge. I immediately glanced down at my feet, acutely aware of each step, where they met with the floor.


As a child, I had a ‘thing’ about certain textures.  One of my ‘worst’ textures was walking, barefoot in the changing rooms and around the edges of a swimming pool.  I vividly remember a feeling of dread prior to ‘swimming time’.  I used to stand on my tiptoes or try to walk using only the sides of my feet, in an attempt to avoid full contact with the floor. 


This was one of the first times I remember the voices of others being so impactive…………“What’s the matter with you?”  “It’s only a floor; it’s not going to hurt you.”  “You’re being ridiculous.” Why do you keep looking down and walking like that?” “Just walk properly.”


Little Julie, staring widely through her six-year-old eyes, had a profound sense right there and then - there’s something wrong with me.  This organic feeling of not liking my feet on the floor must not be right. It’s not okay.  People are telling me that it’s strange.  That must mean I am strange.  Argh! I don’t like feeling strange.  I don’t like being the odd one out.  What shall I do? 


Six-year-old Julie very quickly knew what to do.  She pretended everything was okay.  She tried to act like everyone else. She blended in as much as possible, moving rapidly, discretely, avoiding any kind of connection with her feet and the sensations there.  She pushed down her ill at ease, ignoring it, drawing as little attention to herself as possible. 


As I stood, poolside, last weekend, I felt pangs of sadness and grief.  How many other times did I abandon myself?  How much time did I devote to ‘fitting in?’  What did I gain from moving away from my own truth?  What did I lose?  Little girl, I whispered internally, I’m sorry you disconnected from yourself in those ways and viewed yourself through others’ eyes.  Really, I am.


Amidst the sadness, I felt myself smiling. These days (after much inner work) my connection to self, to my own body, is my anchor.  It’s the thing that enables me to stand in my power, to express and create and remain open, solid in my essence and organic experiencing.  Prizing my inner self is my gift.

Why am I sharing this?  Well, I’d really like you to know something. The aspects of yourselves you may have hidden away, those parts that you view with contempt, shame and judgment, may very well light you up.  They may be the key to getting to know your deepest wisdom.  When you view yourself through clear eyes, clear ears and senses, your perspective can radically shift. 


All aspects of yourself deserve to be explored (yes, even the ‘weird and wonderful’ stuff).  They may just be some of your greatest teachers.  They may just pave the path to your inner self, empowering you to reclaim your unique power. 


That feels like a little slice of magic, to me.


PS……….. Still not a fan of swimming pool floors. 😉



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