You know what I think? I think everyone hits their own version of rock bottom at some point in their life. And I think it has to happen before we can get to the good stuff. Before we’re really ready to live our most amazing life and go after our wildest dreams with reckless abandon, we first have to know the deepest, darkest pain imaginable.
And rock bottom is unique for everyone. My rock bottom does not look exactly like yours, because we all have unique lessons to learn on our journeys. We all have our own demons to quiet and our own dreams to fulfill. But the one thing that everyone’s rock bottom has in common is that if we make it through, we see the light of possibility and hope. And we start to move toward that light with everything we’ve got. We start to develop this unwavering, powerful faith. We start to really, really believe that we will be OK, and that maybe we will even be more than OK – that maybe one day we will be living fully in joy and love.
Survival is an instinct. We are born with the will to survive. And it is so very true that what doesn’t kill us makes us stronger. The human spirit has a remarkable will to endure, to persevere, to keep going in the midst of all kinds of unimaginable pain. But, this gorgeous thing called life isn’t just about surviving. It’s about thriving. That’s what makes our human existence here so precious, what sets us apart from our other animal friends.
For us, it is always about evolving, learning, and growing our soul. It is our human destiny to become amazing thinkers, inventors, healers, and artists. And we do this by following the light, by believing and having faith that what we’re moving towards as we emerge from rock bottom is a purpose greater than ourselves. We are here to do our own part for the survival of humanity. We are here to embrace our unique gifts and share our light with the world. And our own unique purpose is part of the whole.
The lessons we learn along the way – through the challenges we encounter, and the heartache and loss we experience – also serve a purpose. They are designed to test our will to survive and thrive. Because really, when we are embracing our gifts and offering these to the world, we shine with love. Love that wouldn’t be possible had we not fought our battles in the pits of despair that is rock bottom. I fully believe that hidden deep inside every challenge is the sparkly gift of opportunity. An opportunity to be more, do more, give more, shine more, and love more. And the irony is that these opportunities do not exist independently of the challenge in which they grow. They need the catalyst of pain and discomfort in order to emerge from the darkness.
I hit my rock bottom last year. My worst imaginable pain came in the form of experiencing instant loss – of my husband, my job, and all my money. For six months I lived as a single mom on welfare. I became a cliché and no one in my circle of privileged, middle-class friends could relate. I felt alienated, shamed, and rejected. At the worst of it, I felt completely hopeless, unworthy, and totally helpless.
I fought hard against depression and anxiety. I fought hard to choose love and gratitude. I fought hard to keep thinking positively instead of getting sucked into the negative vortex of fear and worry. I fought hard in the battle of survival.
But, I also chose to see it as a necessary step in my journey – as a temporary hiccup that would bring me to a place of thriving, of fulfilling my life purpose. I chose to see the gift in it. I saw the gift of possibility. I saw that I had an amazing opportunity to start completely over. I could be and do anything I wanted. I could start completely fresh and have a second chance at creating amazing dreams and an amazing life.
And now, a year later, I’m doing it. I’m still emerging, still rebuilding my life and embarking on new dreams. The hidden opportunities have been amazing though. I have met friends I would never have otherwise met. I had a career change that never would have happened without going through a tremendous amount of struggle with unemployment. I started believing in love, joy, truth, and the power of positive thinking. I started realizing that I have so many blessings, and so much to be thankful for in this life. I have created incredible abundance through that focus on gratitude.
I started writing more. I started creating more. I started using my gifts to inspire, connect, and love others so fiercely and unconditionally that sometimes it brings me to tears. I have cultivated an awareness of the raw, vulnerable beauty in the world, and I see so much more clearly now what life is all about. I appreciate every interaction, every experience, and every challenge.
I know, deep in my soul, that I am well on my way to serving my purpose and contributing to the survival of humanity. That realization never would have been possible had I not sat in the pits of my own despair, and felt the most incredible pain and discomfort imaginable. It had to happen in order for me to heal my soul and move forward in love. It was part of my destiny. Just like your challenges are a part of yours.
The energy of the world is shifting, and I feel that we are all in a precious, and precarious, time of rebuilding, reconstructing, and rearranging our lives. And what an amazing gift that is. What an amazing opportunity we face during these times – the opportunity to make all our wildest dreams come true.
Christina Vega is a writer, yogi, educator and trainer, aspiring photographer and mixed-media artist, and single mother of two spunky girls.
She is a lover of all things cozy, sparkly, and magical. She believes in dreaming big, and never settling for less than your most fulfilled life.
Find more of her writing about truth, love, and connection at her website.