I started Beyond the White Rabbit after a vulnerable discussion with my roommate, where I told her how powerful it is to know that we are not alone in our journey and how much I’d like to shine a light on different experiences with the hopes that they heal people the way they did me. Unlike any other year, 2018 has shown me that nothing happens by chance. The universe carefully places people at the right time and place. Every encounter and situation serves a purpose and is meant hold up a mirror to ourselves, wake us up, teach us valuable lessons, and remind us of our purpose and who we are. For me, it was a year of real energetic transformation. I have more conclusions, but first, my dear friends, here is my story.
We started off as best friends, and I found it so refreshing that our genuine honesty and care translated into our relationship afterward. Music bound us, and the balance between comfort and challenging myself to grow professionally and personally made the first few years together quite idyllic. He was, in essence, the person I thought I’d spend the rest of my life with.
I chose to ignore my instincts and all the multiplying red flags because I was madly in love. Because I decided to live in comfort rather than face my fears, look within, and realize that I truly deserved better. In the last year before the break-up, he started distancing himself both physically, by traveling often, and emotionally. Many times, I wrongfully silenced myself about important topics out of the fear of seeming too sensitive or because I wanted to avoid a fight. Eventually, when you have to ask the other person, even jokingly, if they still love you, then, you clearly have an issue.
What followed won’t surprise you. I became witness to a series of uninspired classic clichés: red lipstick left on the collar, I love you texts and bikini pictures from this girl who actually knew of my existence from the beginning of my relationship. I’ll be honest with you and say that those things didn’t hurt me. The hardest thing for me was watching someone I loved with all my heart disregard and disrespect me, and look at me completely devoid of love. I shouldn’t have been so shocked. There were signs all along. And even with all of that, it was easier to fool myself into thinking that I was stronger to hold on tightly to the relationship, try to understand him and fix the situation than let it go.
I was already falling into a dark spot, and the timing of his actions spun me into a growing depression. His prior distancing also developed into numerous spiteful jokes, which eventually further disconnected me from my true self. My first instinct after the breakup was to blame myself and carry that feeling of guilt, meticulously dissecting each word I said, each action I took. But every time I thought of how I could’ve done things differently, opening up to my best friend made me realize that the outcome would have been the same. She made me realize that I wasn’t the cause of his infidelity and that it was his duty to voice his concerns to me if he had any. You see, I might not be a perfect person, but I was a good partner to him. I was by his side through it all even afterward, despite my pain.
As empaths, even though it is complicated for us to grasp, we need to learn that we are not responsible for saving people. Because while we focus on healing others, we abandon ourselves, until we are completely burned out. What I’ve learned most is that you cannot pour from an empty cup. For recovery to happen, people need to find happiness and love and repair themselves from within. That includes ourselves.
Almost two years after the breakup, I met my ex-roommate and hearing her going through similar patterns felt like divine intervention. It pointed out to me what I was genuinely doing: holding on to a toxic relationship. I tearfully think of my mom and all she’s been through, watching me spiral at a distance and not being able to help. If I could take anything back, it would be her pain. My mom and my close friends repeatedly tried to open my eyes prior to that, but I’ve learned that you only fully understand what people tell you when you are ready to. And thankfully then I was. All the people who’ve been in my life this past two years, and you know who you are, I will never be able to thank you enough. You are my light, and I am grateful for your love, support and for your patience. I also personally want to thank each and everyone for the gift your stories have been.
I’ve come to the conclusion that recovery is not a definite and tangible finish line. Thoughts reappear, and wounds resurface from time to time. It’s how we deal with this collection of winding roads that makes it a humbling and fascinating process. Each time, we are more resilient than the last time. Meditating, reading, engaging in physical activity, creating a loving and embracing community, opening up to people and having people open my eyes, healing my energy from within and most importantly having tremendous patience when practicing acceptance have been some of the tools I’ve used. And if there is still lingering and intense emotional debris that needs unraveling, then practice vulnerability by addressing the pain head-on rather than numbing it.
The truth is that real strength shines through when we find the courage to stand up for ourselves, cut emotional ties with people whose actions emotionally, mentally or physically harm us. And we truly understand what great teachers our emotions and experience are to us once we embrace them. I firmly believe that if we don’t learn from our experience, the lessons will surely return until we do so.
Finally, here’s the thing about Alice in Wonderland, and about my song White Rabbit. It was never about the Rabbit. All along it was about Alice and how she grew by deeply looking within. I encourage you to do the same. Reclaim your value, learn to trust your inner voice and honor your feelings, and continue on the journey to healing and loving yourself. But most importantly know that you are enough and the people who really love you should make you feel that way.
There are so many fascinating chapters ahead if we would only just turn the page ;)
Hope you enjoy the wonderful collection of anonymous stories <3