The Decolonial Parent

a continuous work in progress

working on enjoying this moment

Photo by Emma Bauso from Pexels

On a personal note, I have been spending the past couple of months recovering from 2020 so far. And, well, the 6 years leading up to it. I haven’t had anything resembling a break since before I moved to the US, so this year has hit me pretty hard. For all my experience and education as a wellness professional, I had deferred a lot of self-care for a long time. This left me starting 2020 pretty depleted and unprepared for everything that has happened.

I’d been planning to transition my website over from selling personal training to a free resource for anticolonial wellbeing for a number of years. I stopped making a living from personal training for various reasons, the main one being I just couldn’t sell people something I believe is rightfully theirs. This is no shade to people currently working as PTs; I genuinely loved the training part of being a trainer, building relationships with my clients, and working together to improve their health and mindset. It’s a rewarding role to play in someone’s life, but ultimately it was in conflict with the ethos of the gym I was working and the reasons I was working there. I could no longer reconcile it.

Cue several years of jobs for the sake of jobs, opening hotels and restaurants, and working in facility management and customer service (what else do former gym managers do?). While there were moments when I felt I could express my creativity and passion: I’m proud of several programmes I initiated, and immensely grateful for the many friendships I’ve built along the way; I always felt like a square peg in a round hole.

Fitting into work environments was a constant effort that got more and more exhausting over time. Eventually, the stars aligned (or rather more literally, there was a lunar eclipse in Capricorn – take from that what you will).

2020 accelerated the timeline, but the plan has always been: grind for a few years to accumulate enough savings to take a few months off and just be. I’m not sure that “enough savings” would ever have felt enough, really. So here I am, somewhat prematurely reaping what I too-scarcely sowed. Financial insecurity aside, each day is an exercise in embracing the opportunity. I confess that I catch myself slipping into the what-ifs, although less often as I continue to work on my mindset and time to reacquaint myself with the person I’ve been busy becoming for all these years.

It can be all too easy to look for the good in a situation or get bogged down by the bad, but the key lesson I’ve been learning this year is accepting the full picture. And that goes for myself as well. Emerging on the other side of a life has been a lot like waking up from a dream. I’m discovering things about myself that I don’t like very much as well as things I’m immensely grateful for. Life changes us whether we’re ready for it or not, so I count it as a blessing that I have this moment to check in with myself.

Every day is not sunshine and roses, nor would there be roses with only sunshine. Some days the rain drenches us and the wild winds wail, and we seep in the iridescent spectrum of existence in all its gloom and glory.