I've always seemed to hold pride about the fact I consider myself a highly independent person. I brag about the independence I held in my early years - not that I remember much of it but it began with stories of me as a toddler passed down from my mother about how I potty trained myself after a family holiday with my two older male cousins who were already out of their nappies. I decided after watching and spending enough time with them I was simply ready to do the same and took kind of a monkey see monkey do approach to no longer wearing nappies.
As my 27th birthday nears I find it interesting that I seem to have carried this approach to doing things I want to the whole way through my life with me. I dove into a lot of the things I am blessed to have in my life now head first with actually not a clue what I was doing. This business being a prime example.
It is here I guess I began to notice one big flaw in my approach. Ironically that being my "independence". When I first started this business I thought it was really important for me to do it all entirely alone. Financially, physically, mentally and emotionally I felt I couldn't ask for support because I was building my empire right? I was in this mindset of being totally self made and where it led me was just confusion and eventually having to ask for the help I should've had from the first place. I am not entirely sure why I had that mindset other than perhaps wanting to prove something to people.
I always felt like a bit of an outsider. In school, in my family and even a lot of the time in friendship groups. Being honest I don't think i've ever really been a part of a huge friendship group and often actually found them quite overwhelming. I always felt I couldn't trust everyone or that group chats became quite intimidating rather than comforting. The last time I was in a romantic relationship I remember picking up on the codependency I tend to form in close relationships quite early on and actually said to the person at the time "Sometimes I truly believe I am better off alone because I am stronger on my own, I become a shell of myself when I depend on other people". What I failed to recognise is that it wasn't the leaning on other people for support that was the problem but perhaps not giving myself the validation first combined with looking for support in the wrong places.
Something I like about myself is that despite too often opening up to the wrong people and having my vulnerability mistaken for weakness and completely taken advantage of - I don't struggle opening up to new people. I am an open book and it has only been recently i've recognised why. CONNECTION.
For my age I would say I've been through my fair share of traumas - Eating disorders, Exercise Addiction, Alcohol and Substance abuse, toxic & abusive relationships, Sexual Abuse, suicidal thoughts and the list goes on. But that isn't a "Please feel Sorry for me" plea because actually I think the unfortunate reality is those experiences are normality for a lot of people in society and what I have found from being so open with my experiences in them is that in opening up it invites other people to as well and within the connection of shared trauma is deep healing.
In Ireland we still carry such shame from the past and the grips of the catholic church and the forced attitude of secrecy placed upon us as a nation and to go back even further than that the trauma and anxiety we faced as a nation during the famine that our ancestors simply had to survive or run away from. It is no wonder we developed such a "we don't speak about those things" approach to our suffering. But I truly believe there is space for this to change today.
In opening up not only have I been able to build deeper and more valuable connections but I have also been able to see the personal strength and development gained from asking for support and also in building community.
In society, especially as women we're pitted against each other & often told there is only space for one of us as the top. Is this the patriarchy or even capitalism picking up on our strength in numbers? There is a reason they burned "witches" at the stake all those years ago. We are powerful as a collective.
With community comes connection and healing but also the medicine of love and laughter. There is so much learning to be done from one another whether thats on how to run your business or even just the latest rollerskate trick you want to learn. These are things I once thought were more powerful to learn alone but actually so much more rewarding to do collectively and in community. So even though it can feel scary, nothing is scarier than reaching the top of a mountain you've spent so long climbing and having absolutely no one to share the view with.
With all that being said I want to touch on how grateful I am for the beautiful community we are building with our Soul Vibrations events. It's the girl gang of beautiful mermaids I have always dreamed of.
Tickets for May 21st are moving fast so if you fancy joining us be sure to grab your ticket!