I’ve been doing a lot of thinking lately about life. My life. The purpose of life. Ethics. Mortality. Karma. As you may have seen from other blogs, I was recently diagnosed with ME/CFS, Dysautonomia, and Polyneuropathy (although I was undiagnosed for many years). I’ve had numerous life challenges over the 2 years that have made me question life. Things just felt unfair.
A very common question people initially ask is “why me?” We habitually go into victim mode – Why me? What did I do to deserve this in my life? Was this karma? It made no sense to me because I reviewed my life and I felt like there wasn’t an incident that stuck out to me that was all deserving of these shit sandwiches (challenges) the past few years had dealt me. I am no saint and I questioned if there was something that I did that I did not even realize that really affected someone. What did I do to get these bad karma points? After hashing it out with others, we just came to the conclusion that sometimes shit happens… even to good people.
But why does shit happen to good people? I pondered this for many years as challenges came up…
One day I realized; it doesn’t. Life is not happening to us, life is happening FOR us! And no, the events may not be fun or easy, but they are there to serve a greater purpose. In the moment, these “shit sandwiches” feel like doomsday. “Why isn’t this happening to my ex who cheated on me?” we ask, after seeing them on social media, gushing madly in love and happier than ever.
It makes no sense that other people seem to be getting along so well in life as we go from challenge to challenge. But the hard truth is, these challenges are exactly what we need right now. They are occasions we were dealt because we are being transformed by the universe. We don’t even realize the fortune we have to waking up to the reality of life through these hard experiences.
I love this quote by Eckhart Tolle, which explains it perfectly.
“Life will give you whatever experience is most helpful for the evolution of your consciousness. How do you know this is the experience you need? Because this is the experience you are having at the moment.” – Eckhart Tolle
Through great challenges and great loss, do we start to question our lives. We start to wake up and think critically about how we are spending our time on earth. Without the tough experiences, we may have never questioned why we do what we are doing.
We wake up, go to the job that we think is just okay, just to pay the bills. We come home to the person we like, walk the dog, pay some bills. We get offended by the news, complain about how work demands so much of us, watch netflix and start all over again. Now this is not EVERYBODY’S life, but it is the typical rat race/city dweller lifestyle that a lot of people get stuck in. You meet someone, get married, start a family, continue at the job to pay the bills and then retire. The outline is pre-planned and we go along unconsciously. We don’t question things, live mildly unhappy lives, and never make changes. This is an unconscious life.
Some of us are fortunate enough to have the shit sandwiches wake us up from the monotony. It doesn’t feel like that in the moment, but if you look closely enough at it, that’s the purpose of it. We start to question who we are, how we spend our time on earth, and how we can improve the quality of our life. If we are open to the lesson behind the challenge, the shit sandwiches help us evolve into the person that we are meant to be. It takes a lot of strength to overcome challenges and if we were not up to challenge, the universe wouldn’t serve them up. When we hit rock bottom, there is no where else to go but up!
Yes, this is the concept of being woke and transcending your consciousness to the next level. This is a learning lesson, as painful as it is to go through it. It will not be easy, but it is essential. Trust that this is challenging you for a greater purpose and by making the climb, step by step, you will reach the top of the mountain.
Think about what is going on in your life and where you think life may be trying to lead you. A lose of yourself or loved one may remind us of how we spend our time and what our true values are. A health problem teaches us not to take our bodies for granted and how our healthy moments should be spent. A break up is a reminder to take care of ourselves and love ourselves first. You may see that you lost sight of filling your own cup and treating yourself with the respect.
Not everything in our lives is a curse, nor is it unintentional. If we chose to trust that life is leading us in the right direction, we can take the first step to transcend the challenges in our life.
“You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something – your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever.” – Steve Jobs
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