As you may recall last month, I completed what was known as #30DaysGrateful on my blog – each day I listed three things I was grateful for. Initially, I thought it was lame – I mean I already knew the awesome stuff in my life, why did I have to document it? But during the exercise, I realized there was a lot more to be thankful than just three things a day, and what’s more is there’s a lot more to be thankful for than the surface-y things we see all the time (the food we eat, the people in our lives, etc).

One of the deeper things I’m grateful for actually didn’t come to me during those 30 days of documenting gratitude. It came to me last night in the bath as I listened to my latest #NewMusicTuesday finds: Peter Gabriel’s So and Kate Bush’s Hounds Of Love. Both have songs of heartaches and heartbreaks and it got me thinking of all the times my heart was broken – from relationships, friendships, and even work and family experiences. There has been so many experiences where my heart was shattered in some way or another. (Does that sound a bit melodramatic?)

broken-heart-purple-love-1-2One of the first times I really connected with my heart was in 2006 at the end of a BODYFLOW class – the teacher, my now dear friend and angel in my life Nadine, guided us through a heart meditation. I can’t recall the specifics, but I remember the visual of my heart: it looked like a rock filled with hot lava. There were cracks in it, and some of the hot lava was seeping out in the form of a red light. The light was trying so hard to shine through, but this lava rock was hard and encrusted the whole thing. I remember being saddened at this visual, elucidating it to mean my heart was made of stone and incapable to love. After class, I had a conversation with Nadine and shared my experience. I’ll never forget what she said: “What makes you think you’re incapable of love? What if that rock was falling off and the light was shining through, only to get brighter and bigger with time?” In that moment I had no idea what she was talking about, but it has taken 8 years and quite a bit of anguish to figure it out.

In that time, the experiences I’ve had have only made me stronger. You see, my heart was never really broken, and here’s why: My heart is a glowing orb of light and light can’t be broken. The hard shell that had enveloped my heart is what can (and has!) been broken. Every time I cried, the crust melted. All the sadness and disappointment chipped away another layer. Every expectation and let down was designed specifically to enable my orb of light to expand, magnify, and radiate beyond infinity.

I have a lot to be thankful for: the relationships that didn’t work out, the friendships that ended, and the jobs that didn’t fulfill. I’m thankful for all the times my heart broke, the times I’ve been let down, and every instance I was devalued or mistreated. And the best part is knowing everything that I had once blamed others for – all the rejections, expectancies, and anguish that lead to the expansion and transformation of my heart were all my doing. After all, I am responsible for my own life. You see, the people involved in the experiences (exes, former friends, family members, colleagues, etc) were simply stimulating the blooming of my heart, but it was me that put them there and allowed them to do it.

And just like that, all those years of grief and suffering melted away. Taking responsibility for everything has given me the power to now choose how I live my life moving forward. It’s so empowering to know I’m in control. This is my heart and I can do with it what I choose – and I choose to let it continue to grow and share this light with the world. So to all of those who helped with the expansion of my heart, to you I say “ty x!

C’mon heart – we’ve got some shining to do!