image of sunflowers at sunset

The French word for sunflower is tournesol, meaning turning toward the sun. ~ Rosina Mihajlovic, Rudolf Steiner School teacher

More than a year ago, I did a weeklong workshop that turned ‘my story’ upside down. My story had been running me for over four decades.

It doesn’t really matter what my particular story was. Each one of us has his or her personal narrative. 

In the safe and nurturing environment of the workshop, I told my story. More importantly, I felt into all the shame and pain associated with it. In the context of the workshop, I threw myself into hard physical/emotional/spiritual work. It was intense. It had to be, to loosen up the tight bindings I’d wrapped around me—my defences.

Undefended, I started to see that I wasn’t alone in the shame I carried. My parents had theirs, my grandparents, too, and even my great-grandmother. I also saw that I could have a role in releasing them. No matter that they had long ago departed, I simply needed to release myself.

I want to acknowledge the people who did the workshop with me. I was in the company of amazingly brave companions whose own work accelerated and enhanced mine. I feel eternally grateful to them. 

All my work and insights from the workshop happened over a week period. But the integration of my hard work took months and is still continuing. 

There’s such a lot of momentum to old narratives. I can say that every day situations challenge me. My buttons get pressed. I can so easily tumble back into envy or anger or resentment. I see that all of these have long tendrils leading back to shame.

But I have crafted a new story: I am whole and complete. I am good enough. I am more than good enough.

I am like a sunflower that orients itself to sunshine.

“It is not arrogant or egotistical to feel good inside. You had nothing to do with it. It’s simply the honest response to clearly perceived Reality.”  ~ Erich Schiffman, American yoga teacher