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A Love Letter to Myself

Dear Ashley,

Wow girl, what a year. I’ve been wanting to write you for some time so that you can remember years from now what went down in 2018. It was a year that changed everything. It was the that year you were initiated into a long lineage of mothers, writers, and teachers. It was the year that you stayed when you wanted to run (more than once). It was the year that you softened when every cell in your body wanted to contract. It was the year that you attuned to the blueprint of your soul and accepted the aspects of yourself that you had been too afraid to embrace.

As I reflect back over these twelve months what keeps coming up is how much you stayed present with yourself and how proud I am of you for that. You experienced a tremendous amount of joy, pain, anxiety and up-leveling this past year. In your darkest most trying hours, the hours when you feared you might suffocate from the overwhelm of resurfacing past trauma, you paused, you released an exhale and you stayed. You committed to recalibrating your energy, shifting your perspective, reaching out for help, and seeing it through. You didn’t stay for your relationship, your career, or because you thought it was the right course to take. You stayed because you wanted to compost what no longer served you. You stayed because you wanted to free up space in your body, psyche and heart to cultivate a more gentle way of being in your body and your relationships.

2018 was the year that you chose to stay. Your body told you that another way of being was possible and your mind was finally ready to get on board because it couldn’t take one more second of being scattered. 2018 was the year that you chose to stay because you’ve had experience after experience show you that you will not die from pain (even though it still feels like it sometimes). 2018 was the year that you chose to stay because as much as you resisted it in the past, you wanted to be a mother and you wanted to be a partner. 2018 was the year that you chose to stay because you craved the kind of relationships that hold the medicine to heal your past and expand you into the future. 2018 was the year that you chose to stay because you wanted to feel your heart break over and over and learn to trust that it would mend and you would be okay. 2018 was the year that you chose to stay because you wanted to.

And not only did you stay, you took risks and dove deep into your inner world with a level of willingness that was palpable. You committed to seeing things through that scared the youngest most vulnerable parts of yourself. You integrated painful family imprints in order to live and love more fully in the here and now. You took an honest look at your anxiety and the ways it manifested from past trauma. You devoted yourself to digesting and assimilating it slowly, one wave at a time. You walked through fire to transmute the behaviors that keep you from being vulnerable. You explored how you take your anger out on Nic when you’re afraid and practiced (and are still practicing) being honest and open instead.

You cried.
You laughed.
You screamed.
You prayed.
You wrote.
You sang.
You softened.
You felt.

You birthed a book about getting to know your breath. You wrote a freaking BOOK! You realized a dream you  had for ages and in the coming months you’re going on a book tour to share your work and your heart even more. You also sold the rights to your book to the U.K.! Already, before it was even out in the U.S. Can you believe it? All that hard work paid off. You earned your seat at the writers table.

And, the biggest, most life changing creation that you have ever made grew inside your body this past year. On October 8th you gave birth to your healthy, chubby little Solomon and nothing, absolutely nothing has been even remotely the same since. You birthed a son and you birthed yourself. I have chills writing this to you. You gave birth to your son. You labored for 33 hours. You stayed strong. You stayed with your breath. You stayed with yourself and you stayed in connection with him the entire time.

There is so much more I want to share with you about 2018 and how amazed I am by the choices you made to expand, to dig deep, to create, to heal, to love, to laugh, and to welcome it all in with an open heart. Thank you for choosing to stay the course. Thank you for making your wellbeing and the wellbeing of Solomon your top priority. Thank you for slowing down. Thank you for going inward. Thank you for asking for help. Thank you for believing in yourself, your worth, and your capacity for real, honest, change. Thank you for loving yourself enough to stay.

Here’s to a New Year of continuing to deepen presence in all aspects of your life. Here’s to showing up for yourself, Solomon, Nic and your chosen family. Here’s to practice. Here’s to your breath. Here’s to integration. Here’s to resilliance. Here’s to staying.

All my heart,
Ashley

4 Comments

  • And here’s to staying ❤️

    • ashley

      Yes yes yes Hope!! Love you so. xo

  • So grateful for you Ashley for your infinite inspiration 🕊

    • ashley

      Thank you so much for the kind words Aida! xo

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