Last week I paid $10 for a palm reading. I thought it would be a fun way to spend an afternoon, but the things that I was told have been racing through my mind on repeat. I have to get them out through words so that I can find some peace and move on.
I opened the door and looked up at a very steep staircase and instantly my heart started racing and I seriously thought about turning back. But I didn't. She didn't tell me anything that I didn't already know about myself, but it was unsettling that a stranger could know so much about my deepest inner thoughts and struggles. Maybe she was spot on because what she told me could be applied to almost anyone. I'll never know - but what I do know is that the more I learn about life the more I begin to realize that I have so much left to understand.
She told me that I will live a very long life. That I will be successful in my career and that people will know my name. That the people whose lives I touch on a daily basis will forever be touched by my work. That the changes I've made in my life within the past year were exactly the changes that I needed to make.
So far, so good.
Then she shifted her body and began with "Sorry if I offend..." and I sunk deep in my chair, eyes wide... I'm sure at that moment she knew "I've got her right where I want her." I tried to smile through the knot in my stomach; not wear my emotions on my sleeve. I tried to look unfazed, but I'm sure she could tell.
She said I have been through two traumatic events in my life and that I have been through far too much suffering to be so young. She said that rather than dealing with these events, I have continued to push them deeper and deeper inside to the point that they were starting to change me. Starting to change me emotionally - by my outlook on life, hope in people that I trust - and physically - through nightmares and headaches. Both of these things are very true.
She said that I am on the wrong path and I know it, but I continue because I'm afraid to be alone with myself. That I have met my soul mate and because for some reason a connection wasn't made, our relationship didn't progress. That I will have one more chance in the future to connect with this person, and that's it.
She also mentioned some sort of health issue that was building due to my constant stress. But that it was treatable and in early stages and possibly preventable.
It was overwhelming, and I sat in my seat in silence for a moment. She asked if I wanted her to go on, and I said that I couldn't take anymore. She asked if I had questions, and I shook my head no. I brushed some tears off my cheek, clumsily stood up, and then got the hell out of there.
Some things are just too hard to hear, and I felt like she was connecting with a part of my soul that I hide from the rest of the world. I felt too exposed.
Don't get me wrong. I have a wonderful life. I am in love with my career, I have a happy home life, and the people in my life are genuine. But I do struggle with my past and it can be a stumbling block for me.
I don't know if I believe in the idea of a soul mate. There was a time that I did, but in my experience it's far more realistic and equally beautiful to find a person that forces you to grow into something bigger and better than you were before. A person that you continue to fight for and struggle with. Some one who has your back, even when there's nothing they can gain from doing so. A partner who, despite the odds, is there with you through all of the ups and downs.
I think what I took away from that whole experience was that I need to get back to the things that I love. The things that I've stopped doing or pushed aside because I've tried so hard to change the person that I was and the person who went through those hard times. The things that make me feel alive, like reading and writing and being outdoors. Feeling emotions deeply; especially the scary ones.
I need to find a way to make peace with my past. Because the past made me who I am, and the person who overcame those battles fought hard for the person that I have come to be. Fought so that I could have this second chance at this life I've created. I need to be ok with the idea that I was not the problem that needed to be fixed in those situations, but the being that needed to grow and move on. And I have. And I'm so proud of who I am, and that's exactly what I need to be remembering.
I didn't need to pay $10 to know these things. But I guess it was a not-so-subtle reminder that this life is it, and I need to keep fighting for the life I've always dreamed of.