Monday, May 23, 2016

Moving from Diminishers to Enlighteners

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I was talking with my sister recently and telling her about moving to a new space where I no longer felt the need to accommodate Diminishers - the people in my life who habitually strive to take away from my joy and confidence. People who are, by nature, light dimmers. Like that kitchen dimmer switch that when pushed down, makes the lamp light go darker and darker. Push it down enough and the light goes out.

As we talked, I asked her what the opposite of a Diminisher is... what is the type of person that comes into your life and uplifts you? That person that helps you up when you stumble, gives you heart-centered feedback when you seek direction, but comes to you from a place of love, not a place of competition and negativity. That person that doesn't disappear or go silent. That person that when upset or confused reaches out to you to talk about it, instead of shutting you down and shutting you out. I've had many of those people in my life - the ones that checked out, disappeared, or went silent when the relationship turned difficult.

As my sister and I talked, we could name several people in our lives that we knew wouldn't shut us out or shut us down.  Candace was one such person in my life. I realized, Candace was an Enlightener. She made my heart lighter whenever we talked. She brought joy and peace just in her presence. I was fortunate to have learned what friendship meant from someone so beautiful. She wasn't perfect, nor does an Enlightener have to be. But an Enlightener is someone who loves you for you. It's someone who loves you for where you are in your journey. They don't cut you off at your knees - they help heal the bruises. Candace and I had many a long night talk - not all of them were of dancing unicorns and happy dust. But at the end of those conversations, I felt lighter. I felt heard. I felt loved, and I'd like to think she felt the same. With her, I knew I was good enough. She reminded me with each smile, each conversation that I was full of light and love; I hope she felt the same. Being uplifting doesn't mean being happy every minute of every day, but uplifting people, even when depressed or angry, work hard not take those feelings out on those they love.

I had a moment Saturday night when I realized how very much my world is shifting - as is the circle of people close to me in my life. I am fortunate to have an amazing sister who is my best friend, she is the rock in my life I know I can stand upon and root myself to the Earth... I don't think I realized what a void Candace left in me when she was no longer a phone call or a touch away. And I think I immersed myself into being a mom as a way of not knowing how to fill the loneliness of being left behind. But I'm coming up for air now. My daughter is healthy, strong, beautiful, and still learning. I will continue to be part of that process, but I recognize that she is ready to make that transition from being close to me to being close to others and moving past that safety net of having me always there. It's beautiful to watch and a little sad, but I realize it is time. And it is time for me to do the same.

Recently I've had new Enlighteners come into my life and I will always appreciate the ones who have been there all along. I am not as close to some of them as I used to be, and I realize that is okay. Life is a journey and I am sure it will all cycle around as it will. I recognized this weekend that I have to take a risk to find new people to connect with even when it feels scary. Because life without the risk, means an isolation that is suffocating.

So, I am stepping out of my safety net and stepping into whatever comes next - care to join me?

peace and love,

MaryKate

6 comments:

Tim Nadwodney said...

Just so you know... you are an elightener... and loved dearly from afar...

MaryKate M said...

Thank you, Tim. The same to you.

Roberta said...

The honesty and joy of your writings always makes me smile! I love the way you can bear your soul and in a manner that becomes a mirror for all of us to see our own reflections. I'm with Tim, you are an Enlightener.
PS: I've begun to classify some acquaintances as Deminishers. I'm slowly weaning them out of my life. Thanks

MaryKate M said...

Thank you, Roberta <3 love you so very much!

Daneen Sullivan said...

I thank the Universe every day , for you MK . Your load isn't an easy one . Candace, will always be with you . Its comforting just to feel her energy still lingering in my heart and mind . Your struggles are your 'enlightenment' , sometimes bringing new understanding to life and what direction you need to go . Your are the light for me . I love you , more than you know . You have precious children , who love you . Your a wonderful human being , who is giving and loving. I know because Candace said so to me . Stay strong and believe because that's who you are .

MaryKate M said...

Thank you, Daneen ❤️