I can feel a new chapter beginning in my book. I don’t know exactly where it will lead or how it will play out, but what I know is that I am no longer the same woman I once was.
Three years ago, I was coming out of a relationship I had sabotaged through old patterns I couldn’t seem to stop. One of my most detrimental behaviors has been stubbornness and the need to dig in my heels. For years, I needed to be right. I needed to be seen. I felt the need to prove myself.
Over years of deep, internal healing, I am seeing how that pattern is not just healing in everyday situations, but it is now also being released in romantic relationships.
I met a guy. I’ve met many men over my years of being a nomad and many I genuinely cared for and wanted to see things continue with. This one is different. It’s still too early to share publicly what my intuition is telling me (my behind-the-scenes writing is on Patreon), but what I know is that this feels different than any connection I’ve had.
If I could wrap up all my lessons and knowledge into one, it would be embodied in this man. It’s as if the Universe has given me the final exam.
“Ok, you’ve seen your mistakes. You’ve seen your failures. You said you wanted another chance and now that you have all the tools to make different choices – here you go.”
Just because we’ve done the internal work and know how to remain peaceful and calm in the face of triggers doesn’t mean we never experience them again.
In fact, the connection with this man began with a trigger on both sides. It started with both of us not seeing the other person for who they are, but through the lens of past experiences. We immediately met each other with our walls up, which caused him to reject me. That rejection triggered my Ego (whom I call Natalie), making her want to tell him to fuck off because clearly he didn’t know what he was missing.
I chose differently.
First, I sat with my trigger. I sat with the pain of the rejection. I sat with the feeling of judgment. And, instead of unmatching us because clearly he couldn’t see a good thing if it smacked him in the face, I chose love, compassion, and understanding.
I wasn’t going to beg, chase, or defend myself. I wasn’t going to try and convince him into seeing what an amazing woman I am. I decided to simply validate his experience of me. Validating how he was experiencing me didn’t mean anything about me. His truth didn’t have to be my truth. That’s where changing my patterns and releasing my heels began.
Our connection continued through texts, phone calls, and finally meeting in person. Our first date was great, and we decided to continue the connection beyond. Then, the conversation began around first kisses and sexual intimacy. I’ve always dated people who took things quickly, as did I. My take on things is not the same as his, which immediately triggered the fear of rejection within me again.
Am I not good enough? Does he not find me attractive? Is he friend-zoning me already?
The stories continued and we began to have a candid conversation via text around how we’ve done things in the past, societal rules, and why we do what we do.
The societal rules are where I began to get tripped up. I’m not a “rule follower”. I mean, the Virgo in me is and Ego/Natalie definitely has her fair share of telling me what I “should” do. But my life is very non-traditional and I pride myself on doing what is authentic for me no matter what others believe.
He shared with me, “Apparently it’s 3 dates for a first kiss and 5 for sex.”
3 dates for a first kiss?! That seemed absurd to me. If two people like each other and have a connection, why on earth would you wait 3 dates? Then a friend reminded me, “Some guys like the courtship.”
Apparently I had never met those men before. Or maybe, I tried to control the situation by putting on my masculine pants instead of leaning into the innate power of my feminine energy. To Natalie, leaning back and not taking control of a situation creates fear. Fear of nothing happening, fear of too much happening, fear of something (or someone) leaving.
Control = safety and in my past, men were the most unsafe. If I could show up in my masculine energy, they could never have power over me or take advantage of me again. Natalie still felt the need to dominate a man. But as triggers were getting reflected back to me, she realized dominating a man only ever broke him down, causing him to leave.
I saw the direct correlation of what happened when I stepped into my masculine energy with this new guy. When I stepped into my masculine, it triggered and repelled him. That’s not what I wanted. That was not the outcome I was looking for.
So, I tried something else. I released my heels. I loosened my grip on the situation. I no longer had the desire to be stubborn just for the sake of being right.
In the past, Natalie would have wanted to go straight to the man for reassurance. This time was different. I noticed her say to me I need space. I don’t want to have this conversation anymore. I don’t care to make anything happen. Just take me outside and be with me.
So I did. The conversation halted for 7 hours while he continued on with his day and I spent the rest of my day reconnecting to myself. I went outside for a walk, ran errands I needed to run and then ended my night in a much needed yoga class.
By the time we reconnected, our energy was much different. There was a softness we didn’t have earlier in the day. We had an honest, vulnerable conversation and I still had the opportunity to use my voice to share my truth.
This experience is different because I don’t have to be forceful to be heard. I don’t have to overpower in order to be valued and seen.
For the first time, I can release my heels and let my guard down.
To learn what my journey of growth and healing looked like, grab Book One