I love that you showed up here. Did you choose to be right here in this moment or do you feel you were led here? It doesn’t matter, either way because you’re here.
This might sound weird but, you are an onion. Well maybe not yet, but definitely the beginning of one. Don’t worry, an onion is just another word for a human. Words aren’t that important here, understanding is best.
Your bulb is what we refer to as a soul. It’s the inner most real and pure form of your existence. When you question that existence, ask your bulb, or soul, and it will know the answer.
The bulb is the middle of the onion, I googled it. I hope I’m not confusing you.
That inner part of you will always be there. It’s not going anywhere, so you can always go back to it. Remember that, always. It’s who you are in your truest form.
But I understand how it’s gotten so difficult for you lately to reach that bulb, because the layers have started to cover it. Those layers are your experiences in this life. Each layer meticulously placed over your bulb sealed with a membrane that is your environment during that experience. Membrane is the slimy stuff on the outside of the layers.
Are you a bulb with layers or a soul with experiences? Or are they the same thing?
That experience you had as a six year old girl; you know the one. You got hit by a boy on the playground for no good reason and sat alone as people laughed. That layer hurt. It was your first experience realizing the world was cruel. Your teacher sealed that experience with a thin layer of dismissal as she ignored you and told you to stop whining and telling on people, and that the boy likely had a crush on you. This is when you learned about the power gender holds. You still peek through to that experience from time to time when you feel rejection.
Or were your experiences at six a little more complex and you only wish your biggest problems were on a playground with a dickhead little kid? Your’s might have been when you were called heinous names for the color of your skin, your weight, or maybe you were beat by your father, lived in foster care or sexually abused by a relative. These layers are thick and they are dense. Don’t worry, you’ll build more layers to cover that pain. It’s only natural.
You find yourself a cute boy in high school who reminds you of the father you never had. He ignores you and tells you you’re stupid. But you love him and stay because you couldn’t get your father to stay. That layer sets the tone for several men like him to come.
Or maybe you had the picture-perfect childhood until college when you were raped by someone you thought was a “friend.” And the membrane on that layer grew murky when your friends wouldn’t believe you. You won’t touch that layer in therapy until two years in. It’ll be rough but it will be the life quake that moves you into healing.
Motherhood becomes a shit show once you realize you had a drug addict for a mom and never learned how to properly love yourself, let alone a child. Or maybe motherhood breathes life back into you because you lacked freedom and acceptance as a child but you overcompensate and create an isolated world where your children are your only source of joy. Becoming an empty nester looms over you like a dark cloud bursting at the seams.
Where are the happy memories stored? You ask. They’re there, thinly, almost blindly hidden; attached to the layers of trauma as we tried to mask them and pretend they didn’t exist for decades on decades. People see through us though. We’ll feel embarrassment but that’s normal and will transcend us into a deeper self-awareness. We have these behaviors on the very outside of our onions. We think we are fooling everyone, but we aren’t, and we have no fucking idea until it’s too late and we are losing everything and everyone we ever loved.
We have these things we do, like anger quickly or become defensive. We have addictions to numb the undeniable pain of our layers and past. We laugh when we feel pain rather than cry. No one has seen us cry before because we are tough and don’t feel emotion. Or maybe all we do is cry. We crave attention, even the negative kind. We point fingers at people who don’t agree with us and become hateful to the ones we actually love, because we were never able to learn to forgive the ones that hurt us; the ones we loved so much. Why would they do that? Now I don’t know how to forgive them. I don’t know how to forgive anyone, especially myself for all the awful ways I’ve treated others.
We beat ourselves up because we were taught to. Guilt is our best friend. Self-deprecating thoughts and words ooze from us like we are performing comedy sketches on amateur night, and guess what? NEWS ALERT: NO ONE believes us. Our sarcasm screams PAIN but we write off anyone who calls us out for it or tells us the truth.
Our onion is discolored. Like, really discolored. Or maybe our onion is soft. Somehow it doesn’t feel or look healthy when seen up close, and that’s ok. There’s so much beauty in our differences and experiences. The only choice we have in being healthy is to peel back the layers. And although you were told not to cry as a child, you get to this time.
It’s the hardest thing you’ll ever do.
But when you choose to…
You’ll talk about each layer and the membranes involved. The boy on the playground and the bitch teacher who taught you that boys hit when they like you. You’ll realize how angry that made you; how you allowed your boyfriends or girlfriends to do it to you and how that same boy ended up raping a girl in her college dorm 13 years later. It’ll feel like hell talking about the pain because you can’t help but re-experience the trauma.
But you’ll do it anyway. You’ll feel it and you won’t keel over and die like you thought. It may bring you to your knees but shit, it won’t kill you, after all! And after all is said and done, you’ll feel a little lighter. You’ll get some color back in your onion once that layer is peeled away and let go. You’ll start healing.
We are onions. And we are meant to heal.
THIS is the cycle we are meant to survive. It’s not supposed to be easy OR pretty! We are supposed to fight and break and put ourselves back together, especially when we feel like we can’t go any further. That’s our mission. We are meant to BUILD, BREAK and HEAL. Our bodies heal themselves every day. Our mind and spirit can do that and so much more. We are meant to do the work. It’s what we’re here for. And it’s never too late. It’ll never be too late to choose self-love and heal the parts that hurt the most.
We are meant to peel in order to heal.
If that cheesy line isn’t fated, I don’t know what is.
Eat it up and then love yourself back to life.
And remember, when all else fails, consult the bulb.