I Am So Grateful!

In the past few blog posts, I have shared my story, where I am today, my BIG want and my wish list to the Universe. Writing all of this has been therapeutic. It has been grounding. What a gift! A great big thank you goes out to Effy Wild for her invitation to Blog Along with Effy. It is exactly what I needed at this time of my life, as I transition into the next phase of my life.

And now, I release my BIG want and wish list to the Universe and I let go and I know that it will be so. I KNOW that IT WILL BE SO!

As I reflect on my life today, I am grateful for so much!

  • I share my life with a wonderful man, who truly love me as I am without judgements, who supports me and cheers me on, who is my best friend. I am blessed to have an exquisite man as my life companion.
  • I have a son who loves me and actually likes spending time with me. (Ha! Who would have thought!) Who is very kind and loving and healthy and who makes me so proud just for who he is.
  • My son found a lovely woman to share his life and she has been a wonderful addition to our little family. Her joie de vivre is infectious.
  • I have many people in my life who love me just as I am, who reflects back my light even when all I can see is darkness.
  • I love our new apartment. It has become a very pleasant and cozy home. It is my refuge.
  • I can walk. It might be laborious and painful most of the time, BUT I can still walk.
  • We have the financial means to allow me to ‘retire’ early and not be in s rush to find a way to bring extra income to supplement my retirement income.
  • I’ve embraced my creative self and can create lovely art that makes me happy.
  • I’m a short way away from my favourite grocery store which means that I have easy access to nutritious and life giving food.
  • My life is filled with riches of the heart, with simplicity and with presence.
  • And the list goes on and on…

In the words of Karen Drucker, from the song I’m So Grateful/Gratitude Vamp:

Gratitude before me. Gratitude behind me.
Gratitude to the left of me. Gratitude to the right of me.
Gratitude above me. Gratitude below me.
Gratitude within me. Gratitude all around me.
I’m so grateful, I’m so grateful,
I’m so grateful, I’m so grateful.

I am so grateful! Thank you!

A Wish List to the Universe

In my last post, I shared about my BIG want: To journey back home to the core of who I am and ground myself there. Today I thought it would be a good idea to start on a list of practical day-to-day wants. A kind of wish list to the Universe. So here goes:

  • I want to stop taking medications – Every morning, one of the first thing I do is take a medication which aims at protecting my stomach from the anti-inflammatory medication I take twice a day. It saddens me that the first thing I put in my body every morning is a drug. My body deserves better than this. I understand that is necessary at this time, but I want to eventually be able to stop both of these medications.
  • I want to be pain free – I dread having to run errands as it is laborious and painful. I want to be able to do this effortlessly.
  • I want to enjoy walks pain free – One of my husband’s favourite things is walking. Being blind, he needs others to go on walk with him. I would love to be able to enjoy going for long pain free walk with him.
  • I want to be fearless about going into unknown experiences and environments – Because of my size and physical limitations, I shy away from new environments and experiences. Will I fit in the seat at the restaurant? Will I be stuck having to stand for a long period of time? Will I stick out like a sore thumb? Will I make a fool of myself? This has shrank my world tremendously. I want to find my way back to experiencing the world around me more.
  • I want to be thin before I die and have time to enjoy my thin body.
  • I want to fully and completely let go of my struggle with food addiction – It is like there are two person within myself: the compulsive eater and the healthy eater. There’s a constant struggle as to which personality will take over. This is very stressful in so many ways. I want this split within myself to find healing.
  • I want to choose the way I get to dress myself – Where I live, clothing options for a woman my size is almost non existent. So I have to wear what I can find, not the style I would prefer. Consequently, in all of my closet, I have not one piece of clothing that brings me joy.I want to dress in the type of clothes that brings me joy.
  • I want to be able to sit on the floor comfortable – One of the things that really saddens me is that, when my little niece comes to visit, I can’t sit on the floor and play with her. Children love it when you get to their level. I want that.
  • I want to spend more time in nature – I live in the city and do not own a car by choice, so going into natural settings require being able to walk long distance. I miss nature and want more of it in my life.
  • I want to keep being present to my life and to myself, to live every moment. the love. the joy. the pain. everything!

I have many more wants but these are the ones that need expressing at this time. These are the ones that I need to acknowledge for myself. These are the ones that I need to dust off and air out in the open. For a while, I had lost hope. I really thought that I was powerless to change my destructive behaviours. I truly, truly felt powerless and in some way, I had given up. Taking a step in the unknown and retiring early from my work has sort of reset things for me. I find myself being hopeful again and I’m so grateful. So grateful!

My Really BIG Want

Yesterday I shared about where I am now in my life. I didn’t cover everything but I did cover what is at the forefront of my life at this time. It feels like the next step is to look at what I want. I feel that this is a very important exercise. Voicing what I want is the first step to making my wants realities. It is pretty hard to get what I want if I don’t know what I want in the first place.

My big want, my really BIG want, is to journey back home to the core of who I am and ground myself there. I want to find peace and that is where I will find it. I know. I do visit that place on occasion. For some reason, though, I seem to keep on pulling out. Never staying long enough to ground myself there. I weave in and out of my own life, my own self and that is a frustrating habit. Because I know where I want to be but I feel like I’m never there. I know that if I could only ground myself there, once and for all, many of my other wants would instantly take care of themselves. I know this for sure. The challenges I face are my way of keeping myself from being present to myself. What I am so afraid of? Why won’t I allow myself this peace? Why do I keep on sabotaging myself?

It’s simple, really. I hold beliefs about myself that makes it impossible for me to allow my deeper wants, my important wants, to become realities. ‘I’m not deserving’… ‘I’m not worth it’… ‘I’m not good enough’… These are some of the beliefs that I have had with me for a very, very, very long time.

As I write this, I realize that these beliefs don’t have as tight a reign on me as they used to. I think this is why I am where I am in my life right now. I sense myself being more open to receiving from those who love me, from the Universe, from my wise and rooted self. Isn’t that awesome! This gives me hope. This excites me. I’m on my way home. I am. And there is no better place than home!


X Marks the Spot

I dread this but I feel this is something I need to do. In order to make it where I want to be, I first have to know exactly where I am now. So for today, I decided to write about where I am now in my life. Warts and all. This is full disclosure and it is scary. They say ‘a picture is worth a thousand words’. Doesn’t it! At my retirement party, pictures were taken. I haven’t seen most of them yet. But there was a group picture taken on my phone. When I first looked at it, I was shocked and very embarrassed. My first reaction was to delete it. I didn’t because a lot of my favourite people are there surrounding me and that is special. Very special. It is still hard for me to look at it. However that is the truth of where I am. So I take a deep breath and I accept this truth. And now I share this truth here with you.

This is me! August 17, 2017, at 357 lbs. If I could only convey all the pain that is wrapped up in this statement. I have a deeply ingrained issue with a food addiction and it goes way back to when I was a child. Up to my late 20s, I didn’t know what it was. I thought I had no willpower. Then I came across one of the books by Geneen Roth, possibly “Feeding the Hungry Heart,  and it was liberating to finally have a better understanding of what was going on with me. That my issue was emotionally based as opposed to my being a total failure at losing weight. At that point, I was probably around 240 lbs. This was right before I got pregnant with my son. I remember that number because that is the weight I was when I found out I was pregnant and the weight I was right after I gave birth. I was 30 years old. Life went on and more weight piled on. Twice since that time, I lost a great amount of weight. The first time,  I lost 80 lbs. The second time, I lost 70 lbs and that was about 4-5 years ago. I put it all back. As simple and as devastating as that! 

So here I am now. Not only extremely obese but with health issues brought on by carrying way too much weight for way too long! About 4 years ago, I had my gallbladder removed. I still feel pain at times. I probably have stones in my bile duct. Not good. That’s not the worst part though. The worst part is that I’ve had osteoarthritis in my right knee since 2008 and my left is even more damaged now with the addition of a torn meniscus. I have issues with my hips as well, although it has not been diagnosed as osteoarthritis yet. All this means that I can’t get around much. Doing the 7 minutes walk to the grocery store is as much as I can do now. I have pain most of the time. It’s been a beautiful Summer but I haven’t been able to enjoy it fully because of my limited ability to get around. Although I much enjoy my home, there are times that I feel trapped. That is where I am physically.

This journey, this struggle, has made a mess of my self-confidence, my self-love and my self-trust and some days I downright hate myself. But those are the choices that I made. Mindfulness calls me to acknowledge where I am now without judgement. So I take a deep breath and I do acknowledge where I am right now, in this moment. The struggles, the fears, the self-mistrust and the hopes. All of it. No judgements, just what is. X marks the spot!

And I look at my picture and I see a beautiful smile and that smile also tells a story. A story of courage, strength, kindness, generosity and beauty. A story of resilience and of never giving up. An amazing story.

Welcome to Emergessence!

Welcome! Welcome! I’m really excited right now. Emergessence has been wanting to be birthed for quite a while and now the time has come! This is it! We’re live! Yeah! Welcome! Make yourself at home and share you thoughts with me. I’d love to read you 🙂

First I want to thank Effy Wild for giving the push I needed to do what I needed to do to get this off the ground. Effy has launched her Let’s Blog Along in September a few days ago and I took it as s sign. Thank you Effy for that much needed push! If you don’t know Effy, be sure to visit her at www.effywild.com! You are in for a treat! She is one of my favourite people!

I would like to start this blog with letting you know about who I am and why I created Emergessence – the art and practice of living mindfully. This is on my About page. However I felt important to share this here as well as a starting post. So here goes…

my name is Ginette Vallières D’Silva. I presently live in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada with my husband, Evan. I have been in this city for 30 years. So this is definitely home now. I’m originally from Montréal, Québec where I was born in February of 1960. My mother tongue is French. However I’m more comfortable communicating in English now asI have done my higher education in English and have spoken mostly English for the past 30 some years.

As the Story Goes..

I will share a bit about my story as I think it will help in the understanding of where I am at today in my life journey. I grew up in a very dysfunctional environment surrounded with alcoholism and verbal, physical and sexual abuse. At 15 years old, I moved in and later married an abusive man who eventually divorced me at 20 years old to move in with his girlfriend and children. I was devastated and had a hard time recovering from the feeling of rejection and abandonment. For two years, I spend all of my non-work and non-sleep hours at the local bar ‘where every body knew my name’. I drank too much and ‘looked for love in all the wrong places’. I was lost. I was lonely. I didn’t want to be on my own for fear that the big hole I felt at the centre of my being would swallow me entirely. Through all this, I was blessed with a very special relationship with one of my uncle who, at the time resided in the North West Territories with his wife. One day I made a decision that was to be the beginning of my journey towards being a better and happier human being. I sold all my belongings for a one-way airline ticket to the North West Territories and joined my uncle and aunt. This is a decision I have never regret. It has saved my life, literally and figuratively! I’m eternally gratefully to my uncle and aunt for welcoming me in their oasis of love, a love that I so much needed at that time in my life.

About Learning and Struggles…

Over the years, I’ve learned so much about communication; about love, relationships and friendships; about parenting and the deep well of motherhood; about strength, determination and courage; about myself and what makes me tick; and about life and its infinite complexity. I’ve also deeply struggled with self-hatred, co-dependency, food addiction and obesity.  Through the learning and the struggles, I have become the person that I am today. Even though,  I still struggle with a food addiction and have health issues brought on by carrying so much more weight than my body is made to carry, mostly, I really like the person that I have become and I look forward to becoming an even better person as I keep journeying home to myself, to the person that I really am at my core, in my essence.

Enters Creativity…

Approximately 8 years ago, creativity made a gentle entrance into my life through the experience of SoulCollage. “SoulCollage a method of self-discovery through the creation and intuitive analysis of a deck of collaged cards, developed by Seena B. Frost, M.A., M.Div.” Prior to this time, I dabbled here and there in drawing but always hated what I created. It was never good enough. Somehow SoulCollage didn’t awaken the perfectionist in me and I was free, finally, to explore my creative side. I’ve eventually got into art journalling and in April of 2011 created my first painting on canvas. I have since painted and collaged numerous art journal pages and canvases. Many of my paintings are now hanging in the homes and offices of clients in Canada and the United States. Creativity has become an integral part of my life and an important self-nurturing practice.

And Now…

As I write this on August 31st 2017, I have been ‘retired’ for 2 weeks. Crazy, eh! 57 years old and I’m retired! That was a bold move! A case of the ‘jump and the net will appear’ trust scenario. It was time! Work and its intricacies had become way too uncomfortable. So, yes, I’m retired now. This feels BIG. This feels like a HUGE life shift. Sort of similar to when I hopped on that plane to the North West Territories many, many years ago. I’m curious and excited to see where this new chapter on my journey will take me.

Emergessence – the art and practice of mindful living…

Our essence is who we are at the core of our being. It is who we were at the onset of our creation. Over time, through our environment and those who we came in contact with, we had experiences and we were told things that made us forgot who we truly are. We were told lies about ourselves. “not good enough”, “worthless”, “ugly”, “too loud”, “too quiet”, and the list goes on and on. These became layers hiding our true nature from ourselves. Then we went on to perpetuate these lies by telling them to ourselves repeatedly and relentlessly. The layers kept on accumulating and consequently we have lost touch with who we are, truly are, in our essence. Emergessence is the letting go of these layers one by one which in turn gently let the essence of who we are come forth and permeate our life and touch those around us.

It is my belief that, it is through the art and practice of mindful living, that we can release the layers of lies and find our way to our essence. Mindfulness is being fully present in the present moment, with acceptance and without judgement. It is in cultivating this mindfulness that our true essence can come forth.

At this time in my life, my profound intent is to allow my true essence to fully emerge in a way that I have never allowed before and doing so by living mindfully. I will do this, reminding myself, that it is a practice and as in any practice, it is about progression not perfection. I will also keep on reminding myself that it is normal to revert to old habits of numbing myself but to keep on ‘getting up, dusting myself and hopping back on the saddle’. Practice, practice, practice – is the key!

I created Emergessence as a space for me to share this journey with you and perhaps, in some way, inspire your own journey. I will share about my struggle with food and my body. I will share my spiritual journey. I will share about my art. I might even share ways that I simplify my life and tricks I have learned along the way. So be sure to sign up on the main page to receive notification in your inbox every time I post something new!

Thanks for visiting and staying a while! Please share you thoughts with me. I would love to read them!

Have a fabulous day 🙂