The caged bird sings because it thinks that someone out there will rescue it. It’s calling for help. A help that will never arrive. This is precisely what I learned from my own imaginary cage of fear.
I learned that no one out there could help me. It wasn’t that they didn’t want to but they couldn’t; they weren’t meant to. Ever watched that Oprah show where the lady cried that she also wanted to change; everyone was pointing out the problem but no one was saying “how”? I felt her pain.
We all have this sort of an imaginary cage that keeps us from experiencing the true expression of ourselves. The thing I realized from studying my own cage was that the cage had no door. So, how does one end up inside the cage that has no door? You build it yourself. You build it because that’s how all the ancestral conditioning helps you stay safe and survive.
Now, I think this was one of my most critical discoveries. The bad news was that no one could help me. The good news was also that no one could help me. What I had stumbled upon on that day was that if no one had the power to get me out, they also had no power to keep me in.
Who then had the power? I did. Yes!!! That’s my greatest discovery. My contribution to mankind is not a child, or an invention; it is this simple realization. When you understand that there is no one out there, you understand your own power and a lot more.
You understand that blame is a game that you don’t want to play. The only person who’s losing is you. Every second you spend on blaming someone, you are not changing the situation one bit. You are, however, passing YOUR power to someone else “outside the cage,” a person who doesn’t even have the power to save you. What a waste!
You also understand that when you give yourself the message that someone else has more power over your choices than you, you feel powerless, not powerful. The universe allots only a little bit of power to us and blaming is “willingly” giving that power to someone else. How is that supposed to make you feel?
Finally, you understand that just like an egg, this safe that you are caging yourself in is better when cracked from within. This is how you gain your wings and fly.
There is not one person I have talked to in my lifetime who isn’t mentally struggling. Mental health issues are a natural part of a human experience. Shame and stigma related to this matter is another sign of its existence even in us, who consider ourselves “normal”. Fear of being judged, our mind wants to disown the label.
The way I see it, we all have issues and all issues are mental. After all, if it isn’t bothering the mind then what is it bothering? So, every person who has a mind and issues, also has mental health issues. It’s time we stop the shame and start understanding how similar we are on the inside.
I don’t know. Many years ago, this was the phrase on my phone wallpaper and I’ll never forget why. I had been dealing with a highly stressful situation for months. One day, I stumbled upon what someone had crafted as a funny phone wallpaper. It stopped me dead in my tracks. As I read the words, I realized that these were the three words behind my anxiety. Reading them was calming me down. So, I put it up as my phone wallpaper. Every time I read the words, “I don’t know,” I would whisper to myself “…and that’s okay!”
Known and Unknown, everything that happens, happens in the middle of these two realities. It’s the delicate moment balancing on the crest of our exhale and inhale. Known is the past, and unknown is the future.
Out of our primal fear of survival, we try to minimize “the unknown” in the unknown. Yet, the future remains unknown. Our idea of safety remains just that, an idea. In reality, no one can predict what the next second of our lives brings to us.
Letting go of our “idea of safety” to embrace the “truth of the unknown” can feel uncomfortable. But, this is a necessary step that we must lovingly usher ourselves into. After all, the road to truth is paved with nothing but…the truth.