How a Year of Loss Became a Year of Abundance
As we close out this very fiery year two of the Pandemic, I encourage everyone to take a look back at what the year brought. Not the things in the news, but within your life. This is something I do every year, but this year in particular was a whirlwind of a rollercoaster. As I reflect, I am filled with gratitude for the never ending lessons about strength, family, perseverance, friends, love, growth, and simply put: abundance.
This year started with my apartment catching fire and is ending with my car being stolen. All the events in between are just as crazy and unbelievable, but unimportant for this story. What I can tell you is that someday I might just write a book about all the bizarre things that happened. If it is possible, it is quite probable I experienced it.
After losing my apartment and majority of the things in it, I was distraught as I tried to figure out where to go from there. I’ve restarted many times before, but never like this. I was upset over losing all the things I had worked so hard to obtain. All the overtime hours and saving to get my sofa, my bed, and all the other first time purchases I made in that very first apartment on my own. It was devastating and soul crushing.
And then my partner asked me one day (after hovering over her as she packed the salvageable dishes from the kitchen):
“Why do you put so much of your self-worth into these things?”
I stopped and just stared at her for a minute.
How dare she question my feelings about the situation.
And then this voice told me:
“She is not questioning your feelings. She is questioning the emphasis on things determining your value.”
I had to think for a minute. The things were hard to let go of because I see the hard work that went into paying for them. The hard work that went into getting to this point of being in this home. The healing that this home represents after leaving toxic, abusive relationships. The years of memories from collecting and creating. Gone. Most of it gone.
I looked around and saw my hard work literally go up in flames. I felt distraught, and hopeless as I once again had to begin. But what my partner told me next changed my outlook.
“Instead of seeing everything as a loss, see it as abundance. Abundance of strength. Of perseverance. And abundance of your ability to make it happen. You know now that you were able to make it happen once, you will be able to make it happen again and again.”
Abundance. A word that has limitless meanings for limitless uses. And a word that changed my life and my mindset going forward.
As I finished sorting through the salvageable items, and took photos for my insurance, I took small moments to just say “thank you.”
Thank you to the universe for giving me the experiences that brought me to this apartment. The place my child and I brought home our first pet, Jon Snow, who has been the first of three cats to provide extra emotional support and joy to our lives.
Thank you to my friends who encouraged me monthly to give recognition to the successes, no matter how small.
Thank you to my sister and brother-in-law who helped furnish my home when she remodeled her office.
Thank you to the leasing agent who took a chance on me and approved me for this apartment.
Thank you to the partner who taught me what it means to be fearless, proud, loved, loving, and respected. Who challenged everything I knew before to grow in ways I deserve.
Most of all…. Thank you to the Monica who signed the Lease. She felt broken, unsure, and scared at the time, but she did it anyway.
As the year has progressed, I have found it easier to just let go, which has sparked my own spiritual journey. This journey is unique for every individual and mine is no different in that respect. My family story is not unlike many people in the world, filled with stories of culture stripped away and the adoption of others that all but erase our ancestral history, culture, and spiritual selves. As I study these ancestral histories and stories, and meditate, I have begun to trust myself and the universe more. Trust my ancestors to have my back, as they always have. When you have lived through the many experiences as I have, you learn just how protected you are. And whatever your belief, you know someone is watching out for you.
Many times over the past year, my child and I could have died or been seriously harmed, but we weren’t. In nearly every experience, we walked away without a scratch. Untouched. How do you explain that? Instead of asking “Why me?” I began to say “Thank you,” and ask “What are you trying to tell me?” And the answer each time came through clearer and clearer.
No longer do I see these occurrences as being losses or setbacks, but rather messages and reminders of how abundant life is. If we never move beyond the hardships, we may never see all the other options in life. Things can be replaced. Homes can be rebuilt. But you? There is only one. You deserve the life of abundance, wherever it may be, however it may look.
Fast forward to a week ago when my car was stolen. It happened so quick and right outside my apartment. I was in the living room, overlooking the street where it happened, and did not hear a thing. If you’ve ever experienced having your car stolen, you know just how violating it feels. I immediately began thinking of how I will have to change my life without my car, and at the same time…. What condition might it be when it is returned? There is a duality of emotions and thoughts. Planning for the best and the worst at the same time. After 24 hours without the car, I began to make peace with possibly never seeing my car again. This first brand new car ever purchased.
But unlike the apartment fire, where I mourned the losses, this time I thanked the universe for the great memories from the adventures that car transported us. And I accepted that perhaps this is just another turning point, a closure of past chapters, a lesson to add to my book of life, or just simply… a random thing that happened. And instead of wondering “why me?” I just told myself that whomever took my car must be in more need than me.
As of the time this article is being written, my car has been recovered with some damage. It is still unknown yet as to what extent the damage or if it will be salvageable, but what I do know is that everything will work out. If I need to replace my car, it will work out. If it will take a while longer to repair, it will work out. This bump in the road will not stop me from moving forward and living life.
By seeing the abundance in letting go of this chapter or these things in my life, I can make space to see the limitless possibilities and opportunities ahead.
Will they always be easy to see or obtain?
No, definitely not.
…. But I know they’re out there.