I sang on the Solstice.
In “public” to my community out in the desert. Just about three or four lines. I had everybody else sing with me. It was just one line-Jai Sita Ram Jai Jai Hanuman-a chant I’ve heard over the past few years that really spoke to me. I didn’t even know what it meant. I just knew that it was the song I needed to sing.
Hours before, we had wrapped the end of the day of our healer training weekend. I was packing up my stuff and my teacher David came up to me. “You sure were quiet this weekend. I didn’t even see you last night on the hike. You were wearing that invisibility cloak.”
My inner dialogue: Ugh. Gut punch. Time to step up.
My teacher pokes and prods gently. He knows we are there to grow and out create ourselves. He knows we are ready and he says what we need to hear, not what we want to hear.
This invisibility cloak is not a super cool magic garment. It’s when you shrink and hide yourself because you are carrying shame about who you are. During my one on one Breathwork session that weekend, I realized just how much I was holding. I had screamed it out and cried it out earlier in the day but knew it was still lingering as long-standing patterns do.
I had to make a statement. I had to commit to being completely seen without fear. I had made my intention for the weekend to burn away my perfection trip and time was ticking.
We hiked out to a special spot in Joshua Tree for our Summer Solstice Fire ceremony. We had written intentions earlier in the day and were offering them to the fire along with corn, tobacco, seeds, and herbs. One brave woman got up first to offer a letter she’d written to a recent ex lover to the fire. David put her through the gentle wringer as he does.
I was freaking out but I knew I had to make a move. I raised my hand. “I’d like to go next because I want to be seen.”
I walked up to the fire and fed my intentions to the flames. He asked me if I was beautiful. I said Yes, I am. He asked me what my dead sister’s name was and said she was all around us. I grinned. I knew she was.
Then he asked super casually if I had a song. Like you’d ask someone for a tissue. Now, I’ve never ever done karaoke. I used to always be the lead in plays and sing solos when I was in elementary school.
Then the shame and perfection stole my voice away. It made me shrink so much that people are always running into me. I’m a six-foot tall woman in heels and people somehow manage not to see me quite often.
I refused to carry this burden anymore. Its time was up. I’ve learned that when you want to receive a gift, you need to exchange with the Universe. If I wanted to be seen, I needed to prove it through an offering.
Time stood still. I looked around me at all of the kind faces that were waiting for me. I looked to the beautiful sun, illuminating the ancient rocks and shading the hills with smoky violet. I looked to the sky, took a deep breath and let my expression ring out.
I think it was pretty. I know it was brief and that was okay. It was the beginning of saying yes, all of me is okay. All of this is okay. It’s okay to make mistakes. It’s okay to cry. It’s okay to be sensitive. It’s okay to break down. It’s okay to not know. It’s okay to just be who I am.
When I sat down next to my friend Ashley I was shaking. She glanced over and said, “When we go on the fall retreat, we should do a song together.” Like it was no big deal! Like I was actually a legit “person who sings”!!! “Sounds cool. Let’s jam.” I replied.
My inner dialogue: WTF. Who are you right now??? I love this!
It turns out the song I sang translates to this: May the light that dwells in my heart be victorious over all internal and external obstacles. May the positive and transforming vision of the Divine in my heart lead to the fulfillment of Divine will.
Sounds about right. My soul knew they were the right words.
So, what would your life be like if you fully embraced all of yourself-even the parts that feel embarrassing, shameful, or unattractive? What would be different if you could accept all of yourself with no caveats-right here, right now, as you are? Can you wrap yourself up in unlimited love and say yes to being seen?