Jess Ball lives with a chronic condition. Through her experiences, she has learned to let go of limiting beliefs about her condition, and is realising the beauty and magic. Here she shares her conscious creation.
I learned to love others because I wanted to belong.
At the age of 12 I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. I was told I will be injecting myself four times a day with insulin, which was a huge shock.
As my body shut down, I shut down from my body. It caused a complete disconnection and fractured my relationship with myself. I didn’t trust my body to support me; so we split up. And I felt alone.
So, from that experience, when it came to my sense of belonging, I decided to love instead, as it meant that I was worth something through others’ eyes, and I had a purpose. I didn’t know where this sense came from, and I didn’t care to entertain the exploration at that time. So I went with it, and unconsciously created an external filling of my need for significance (which ultimately leads to disappointment, as no one else can fill the illusory hole inside except ourselves).
At parties, as I wouldn’t drink that much, I would be the designated driver, or at least the keeper of memories and secrets from ‘the night before’. At celebrations, I would have a bit of party food and cake (luckily I don’t have a sweet tooth). Under the surface my heart was breaking, as I wasn’t being asked or considered in the choices that were being made for the majority of people there, who didn’t have dietary requirements like I did.
I found someone else who also had type 1, but she didn’t talk about it; so I learned to have shame and didn’t want to go into it very much either. I could tell you the mechanics and logistics of management, but I certainly couldn’t tell you how it felt, as I had no idea and didn’t realise I was disconnected.
The need for connection externally to myself was the biggest craving I had. I wanted nourishing and my body wasn’t coming to the party. So I searched… I had buried the major key in the sacred trine, what I call the alchemy of spirit – body, mind and soul. I went searching on a path for truth and knowledge at 17, and dived into finding meaning, reason and a solution. I didn’t know at that time the question I was hunting the answer to, but I knew it was a big one.
I was meditating, doing yoga, looking at astrology, energy healing, acupuncture and working with crystals, amongst other very healing, deeper learning for me. Although I was experimenting with various techniques, philosophies and practices that worked with my diabetes, I wasn’t doing it to be a victim. I never considered myself a sick person. I was simply trying to fill the hole as I felt like having diabetes was a curse (I had been told it was a ‘life sentence’), and it made me different, when all I wanted to do was belong.
I realised, when the house of cards came tumbling down, that I had never taken responsibility, or honoured my mind, body, spirit connection, as I was denying it was a dis-ease in my functioning at a deeper level.
I desperately wanted to belong, and the diabetes made me feel separate in every way I looked at it.
Living, quite literally, in survival, in a constant state of fight/flight and on the ready for any small wrong move that could see me die, has been exhausting for 20 years. It has stayed in my nervous system and has fed into every aspect of my existence until those cards fell down and I screamed STOP.
The reconnection came when that threat finally became real, earlier this year. I ended up in hospital for the first time since being diagnosed, and had to be resuscitated. About ten minutes away is close enough to death for most I can imagine, and instead of controlling it and denying the reality, I had to go with the flow. That was the ultimate surrender. The ultimate pause and refresh button that was triggered.
I remember, as I was going in and out of consciousness at home, I spoke to my body and told Her I was listening, and if there was something I needed to pay attention to, I would call an ambulance. She understood, and I got that message back loud and clear… It was a graceful conversation, and there was no fear of death. It felt like time and space stood still, and there was a beautiful flow of energy around me.
The ultimate connection back to my wholeness happened as I had finally realised the complete disconnection and lack of respect for myself. We are in this together. In that moment I experienced the most intense and indescribable feeling of oneness and incredible love. And from there the help came (which had also been hard for me to ask for, particularly in relation to the diabetes) as I am a giver and didn’t receive very well. That changed when I realised I could trust myself and my body, and I felt the love from within.
At times my mind and I have had our strong discussions too, and I have certainly learned in this chapter of my journey that, if I look after my body, my mind will follow and I will uncover the peace. ALWAYS.
Our minds, bodies and souls are all one, and are all connected at such a deep, foundational level, which I never quite felt. I understood it in my head, but when I came fully back into my heart, the feeling was something I’d never felt before.
After coming out of hospital, and getting back into work, after a few weeks of not feeling great and absolutely exhausted from the major trauma I’d experienced, my body went into adrenal fatigue (similar to chronic fatigue) and I couldn’t do much at all. I kept trying to show up for work, for friends, for family, as I didn’t want to let people down by not being able to give.
Instead, and this is where the clincher happened and the penny dropped – I needed to honour myself and my body, and connect in to hear what she was saying to me. Not just dropping by to visit occasionally, but to always recognise and honour the connection, and know we are safe together.
She was telling me to stop, pull back, be still… So I really listened this time…
I had been working for years on my mind-body-soul connection, and I realised that the biggest key I had been missing, was the feeling, connection to the physical body and this realm. In the search for the ultimate sense of freedom from my diabetes, I investigated different professional treatments – acupuncture, chiropractic, osteopathy, reiki, theta healing, etc., and I felt the connection periodically, but I could never maintain it, mainly because I didn’t realise that it was what I was craving all this time, and I totally mistook the feelings for other emotions.
I am now having a love affair with myself, with my body, mind and soul, and all the beautiful parts to it. And in denying that connection, or rather not knowing until I was ready to understand at the divine time I learned it, I felt so disconnected from my world.
Yes it had impacts on my relationships, both intimate, and also friends and family, but that’s what I was attracting subconsciously, as I did not accept living with diabetes, and saw it as a failure instead of the blessing it is.
My inner guidance has now been heard by me – I have my voice back, and it is beautiful and wise.
At times I slip back into the habit, but I know it is just that, and I certainly am on a strong and powerful quest to help others find and listen to their inner wisdom again after disconnection.
I learned to love myself after being in hospital; peaceful because, for the first time in my life, I had listened to my body and we decided we were on the same team. I am whole, and living with diabetes has absolutely nothing to do with any outcome, but instead is my reconnection point.
My search for me, and the circle completion of finding the doorway in and unlocking it, happened when I reconnected through the diabetes. I walked over the threshold into the most wonderful place of love and wholeness – and I was holding the key all along.
It has been a big journey so far, and I am excited to see what other magical pathways lie in this new world. We are all teachers and students at the same time, and I truly believe the lessons I will continue to learn on this journey will continue to uplift and liberate, now that I have accepted my responsibility and taken myself into my own hands.
I unlocked my heart and listened to my inner wisdom from the cracks of imperfection, where the true beauty lies, and it was my ticket to freedom.
I have had amazing guides along the way who have been helping me get closer to seeing the lock and big walls, and have all done their thing to help me knock them down for myself and show me where the door was – I was so blind I had no idea.
From the major trauma my body has endured, I am now honouring the process, the resilience, trust and protection I undoubtedly know I have, and I am moving out of survival, which has been held in my nervous system ‘just in case’ something happens.
Clearing the body memory of trauma in the nervous system, subtle energy system, and other systems operating in there, is a big process, and one which is ultimately the most rewarding when everything is flowing again. I am learning what my body is saying, and the messages are loud and crystal clear. And I have an awesome support crew around me who, now that I have taken responsibility for myself and my path, and stepped into my role as the creator, are helping me at deep levels, working on my mind, body and my soul.
I am paying that forward, in my work as a life balance coach, working with people to unlock their creative potential. Coming from the place of giving from being whole instead of the desperation of wanting to be filled up, is the biggest gift I could give myself and those I support.
Helping beautiful souls realise their wings and giving to others has ALWAYS been the biggest reward for me, and it is my mission here. My big WHY…
Above all, through living with diabetes, I have learned to love myself and others. And what a massive blessing that is.
We are the creators of our own realities, and when we take responsibility for ourselves and our journey, magic undoubtedly happens.
Jess Ball is a life balance coach and communications specialist. She works with creative people to uncover their true purpose, shifting beliefs that no longer serve them. She guides them to move forward and realise their unique potential.
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