I have had a life full of pain, loss, fear, resentment, and although I have had so much positivity as well, I realize that I am wearing the weight of the negative experiences and beliefs on my body…and I am so ready to let go! I am in the process of loving what is and no longer resenting myself for getting here. I am in the process everyday to just be with myself for at least 5 minutes and connect with my inner soul and inner child. I am in the process of accepting fear of failure and struggle for what it is – an emotion that can be chosen to felt and loved for what it is and not become my identity. I am a being of love and light and deserve the life of abundance that surrounds me!
From the moment I heard about Hungry for Happiness I got this feeling in my gut that I needed to learn more and that this had crossed my path for a reason! I was so intrigued and in admiration of all the women Samantha Skelly had helped thus far, which lead to great disappointment when I realized I was unable to attend the live event I had tickets for. There was no way I was going to let tickets this good go to waste – another woman deserved this opportunity of a weekend full of self-love…time to do a contest giveaway! To be honest, my body was having this uneasy feeling come over it as I was about to post a contest giveaway, which was so strange as I LOVE giving things away…okay…interesting…I will wait another day or so until it feels good to me. Sure enough my plans change and my weekend days free up so I am now available to go! The moment I find this out, there goes my gut again and now I am getting shivers down my spine as well (which for me as of late has become a sign of great things to come). So I email Samantha and let her know the change of plans, I will be there with bells and whistles on!
Once committed I found myself oddly enough trying to make excuses as to why I couldn’t go – I was going to be tired for my evening plans, it was too far of a drive, none of my girlfriends I want to go with can make it, I had so many other things I needed to get done. This was all so strange as I am a woman that jumps to the opportunity to attend events, experience new things, and meet people – why was this happening? Even until the very last minute when my girlfriend told me she was too sick to go, I had a moment of feeling like, “Okay, I won’t go either.” But my gut won this battle and something was telling me that I really NEEDED to go to this event and would regret it if I didn’t.
On my drive to the event (which was held on the UBC Campus…so far drive for a Langley gal), I really took some time to think about what my relationship with food was as I was sure it would be addressed at the event. In fact, I thought that Hungry for Happiness was a type of weight-loss retreat. Was I ever wrong, it was so much more than that and in fact we didn’t even talk about food the whole weekend. If I am perfectly honest, I took the middle road in my thoughts, as I didn’t feel like I had a bad relationship with food but I knew I couldn’t say that I have a good relationship with food as I looked down at my body and all the weight I have gained over the years. My body was a trigger for me to know that I had a difficult relationship with food, but I didn’t want to believe it.
I wasn’t overweight my whole life; in fact I was very slim and athletic for the majority of my life. I often find myself remembering what those ‘good old days’ felt like and I am reminded of the ability to do any physical activity so freely and powerfully with confidence. Athletics and activity were things that once brought me so much joy and now the thought of doing so many of these things I love terrifies me as I know it’s going to be a struggle and an embarrassment. So when asked by Samantha to think of one word, one feeling that I wanted to get out of the weekend, it was…ALIVE.
I wanted to feel alive in every inch of my body, alive in the core of my being, alive in mind, body, and soul. I have felt ‘dead’ in so many ways for so many years. When I got to the event and Samantha asked the room of about 100 women their word, I knew I had to share mine out loud to commit to it fully and not waiver, so I raised my hand and shared my thoughts. She asked me, “Do you feel alive in your mind and dead in your body? Is your mind in overdrive that your body no longer has a voice?”….YEEEESSSSSS! Yes! Yes! I didn’t ever think of that way until that moment, but my mind is so alive and so full of life but my body is nowhere near that feeling. They are not in sync…and I cannot remember the last time they were to be honest. I knew in that moment, if I could walk away with an understanding of that and even better a glimpse of feeling of life in every part of being, this would be a life-changing weekend.
At that moment, I decided and allowed myself to fully commit to putting all my energy and focus into this event while I was there, which meant phone on silent and being 100% present. I was uneasy about that for so many reasons, but I firmly told myself, ‘Jody, you deserve this…you NEED this!’ What unfolded for the next 2 days was so moving that my body is still vibrating from all the positive energy embraced by my entire self that weekend.
I had so many breakthroughs of self-discovery that weekend that I am still digesting but so grateful for everyday. Although they are extremely personal and it feels uncomfortable sharing such harsh realities about myself, I wanted to share some of them here in hopes they can help someone else. When I was finished the weekend I was so eager to share my experience with Kyla and when I did she had so many ‘ah ha’ moments herself that I knew I needed to share. So here are some epiphanies that I had disclosing the harmful beliefs that have influenced where I am today:
*I have been carrying the weight of pain/loss/fear on my body physically
*I have a deep fear of failure and struggle
*I have never felt comfortable in my body no matter my size
*I have never felt deserving of all the compliments I have received
*Perfection and the perception of it being my life to so many growing up – from my body & looks, to my academics, to my career, to my relationships, to my style – has put an ton of pressure on me and a weight on my shoulders
*My mind and body are so disconnected that I have been falling and injuring myself so much and not knowing how it happened over the last several years
*My minds chatter is so strong that I can’t shut it off to sleep or meditate (truly meditated for the first time this weekend)
*I feel so much resentment towards myself for getting to this point and find it hard to forgive myself
*I am addicted to my story and often feel it is my identity
Using the tools I learnt over the weekend and replaying the conversations or meditations I had, I still continue to discover more than is shared here and I am sure that will not stop.
I am so excited to share that I have joined the Hungry for Happiness Society and I begin my quest to become the best and highest, most authentic version of myself. I have committed to make myself a priority for 6 months and ultimately make habits that will last a lifetime. I hope to be able to share my experience as I work through the realizations shared previously and the obstacles I battle in this quest for transformation. The truth is, financially this is not the best time for me to be embarking on this journey that comes at a cost, but the reality is there is no time like the present to conquer any obstacles preventing me from living a life of happiness to every degree. I like to think of this as taking an all-inclusive vacation with myself and one that will forever leave a positive imprint on my life. On May 15th, 2017 my journey begins with the Hungry for Happiness Society – buckle up and join me for the ride!
Sincerely and Vulnerably,
Jody Belanger XOXOXO
Founder of I Like Her Style Vancouver
Hungry For Happiness