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What is shadow work?- Your guide to embracing and facing your shadow self for a fulfilling life.

We all have aspects of our personalities that we keep hidden from others. Sometimes we get so good at masking that we hide it from ourselves too.
Some of these are natural human emotions such as jealousy, anger, lust, desperation and resentment that we are taught as undesirable to exhibit, addictions or trauma.
Carl Yung, the godfather of analytical psychology and shadow psychology describes the shadow as “desires and feelings that are not acceptable to society or to the conscious psyche”
Escaping these uncomfortable emotions or experiences by burying them deep within our psyche, not consciously displaying them, however, does not erase them. Just as your light (positive traits and accomplishments) shines bright and illuminates everything around you, your shadow always follows even when you are running away from it. This article is an insightful introduction to shadow work with 5 prompts for beginners at the end.

The shadow when suffocated into the abyss of the subconscious manifests itself as insecurities, outbursts, projection, self-sabotage behaviour and unhealthy relationships; setting you up for an all-around unfulfilling human experience devoid of growth.

So what is shadow work and how does it guide you through embracing and confronting your shadow for a fulfilling life?

What is shadow work?

Shadow work is the process of assimilating your shadow into your conscious personality, confronting the cause or origin of undesirable feelings and experiences with the intention of understanding and not punishing that aspect of yourself. Shadow work keeps you in touch with the embarrassing versions of yourself, equipping you with the awareness of your innermost character and the power to embrace all of you, transforming for the better.

My shadow work journey started in December 2020 amidst what felt like a never-ending depressive and anxiety-filled episode resulting from heartbreak. The pain from the unrequited love that I experienced became a catalyst for my identity exploration. In between soaking up pillows with salty tears, endless voices in my head replaying that I was never good enough to be loved anyway and me ranting to my friends, I was inclined to go within and turn the lens on me. Microscopically, I analysed every behaviour exhibited in and out of the relationship.

What made this specific ending so painful to me? What were the insecurities I projected within the relationship, and what new insecurities have I developed due to the breakup? Why do these matter? What is the origin of my actions and reactions towards him?
Where and why did I drop the ball in that relationship with myself?

The focal point of healing from the breakup shifted to understanding myself without avoiding my shortcomings and not the actions of the other person.
As I delved deeper and deeper into every question, I peeled off layers of childhood trauma, unlocking memories of my subconscious which had informed how I showed up in life.

Without knowing it then, I had embarked on a life-changing journey of self-discovery beyond my believed consciousness.

Why do you need to do shadow work?

Wouldn’t you love to get to know every aspect of yourself, hold yourself accountable with kindness and compassion, love and develop your personality for the better? And consequently silence the negative self-talk?

Everyone needs to do some shadow work periodically because it is only through experiencing the shadow that we harness our transpersonal power. The practice of uncovering your unhealed subconscious will retire the “this is just the way I am” rhetoric when confronted by the harm we cause ourselves and others.

Doing shadow work is a way of “checking yourself”- your inner dialogue and the self that is shielded from others out of shame or fear of retribution.

It is only by merging the “darkness’ and “light” that we allow ourselves to have a human experience that transcends society’s limitations on our perception of self.

How do you practice shadow work?

Shadow work need not be daunting or scary. The negative connotations of darkness and pain attached to it are mere chatter from the group of people who deem every spiritual practice which is not rooted in Abrahamic religion as evil.
Here are three ways to do shadow work and get to know your subconscious.

1. Therapy.
Yes, therapy is a form of shadow work! Therapy is objectively the safest and most supportive form of shadow work; as you have a trained professional guiding you through uncovering your subconscious. The high costs of private therapy, lack of representation, long wait times and unreliability of the free counselling provided by the NHS in the UK generally make therapy unappealing, which prompts people to embark on this journey solo.
But if you can find a great therapist that you connect with and trust, this is my recommended option for shadow work.

2. Journaling.
Want to trace your thought patterns and behaviour solo? Then journal shadow work is for you!
There is a plethora of shadow work journals out there that come with loaded questions designed to probe into your deepest psyche. But, a blank notebook, noting down the questions that arise whenever you are triggered and exploring the answers to those questions is a great starting point! As someone who processes her thoughts and emotions better through written words, I’ve found that journaling is my go-to option.

3. Meditation.
Are you a visualiser?
If yes, then guided shadow work meditations are your go-to.
A soothing voice navigates you through visualisations of feelings and actions buried deep within your subconscious, unearthing your primitive desires and confronting the ego. With meditative shadow work, visualisations can be intense and require an external support system to jolt you back to the now when breaks are needed.

So you have all the information you need, a safe space to meet yourself fully and a great support system and are ready to meet your shadow self?

Here are 5 shadow work prompts to kickstart your journey to embracing your shadow self. 

1) What are the 3 things that I am most judgemental about in others?

    i) How do each of these characteristics show up in me?

    ii) How do I feel pointing them out in myself?

Tip: don’t stop there. Explore each feeling that arises from identifying these behaviours in yourself and think about another time that you have felt that way.

2) When was the last time I felt like I was not good enough?

    i) Whose action or lack thereof prompted this feeling?

    ii) What are the value systems that I use to measure my worth?

3) When do I feel the most valued?

    i) Who has made me feel valued consistently?

    ii) How have I reciprocated this feeling and made them feel valued?

4) When have I wanted to implement a boundary but couldn’t?

     i) What was the boundary that I could not implement?

     ii) Why did I not go through with asserting this boundary?

Tip: remember that the only way to fully meet your shadow is to be honest with yourself, even when it is uncomfortable and cringy. Explore other scenarios where you have backed out of asserting the boundary which you highlighted above.

5) Who has hurt me the most in life?

    i) How did they hurt me?

    ii) How did my perception of them change before and after the hurt occurred.

Bonus question: How did my perception of myself change before and after the hurt occurred?

As you begin this practice to get to know your shadow self and transcend your ego to be your highest self, it is important to remember that healing and personal growth is a continuous journey with no final destination. So take breaks in between each shadow work session, experience your light and practically implement new strategies to embrace your shadow. New triggers will always pop up. Gradually, with more practice, confronting your shadow will be instinctive. Albeit uncomfortable and painful sometimes, the benefits of shadow work far outweigh the momentary discomfort. And your fulfilling life experience will thank you for your dedication to understanding and bettering all aspects of yourself.
Good luck shadow working using whatever method you choose!

And remember awareness without action is futile.

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Home · Love

No Goodbyes- a short story.

Just as the Imam cried out the call to Asr prayers in the mosque nearby, you would appear across the street. Waiting at the mercy of the van drivers in the absence of white spaced zebra crossing, to dart across the busy road and scoop me up into your arms.

You always came bearing gifts.

Yesterday was the soft brown loaf of adanza bread, filled to the brim with the white powdered substance- Nido full cream powdered milk, my very own crack. Layered with rich Milo chocolate and sugar. “A weird combination that will ruin her stomach” Yama always protested, but one you knew made me skip down the road after every bite.

The day before, it was crunchy, but with just the right amount of softness boiled groundnut, bought from Aunty Fatima that I munched on as we practised my French.

“Conjugate the verb Aller, using we in the present tense” you had challenged me.

“Nous allons à la maison” I enthusiastically said with a smirk on my face. I won. I had been practising that all day, I just knew what you were going to ask.

We were in sync like that. 

The apple indeed did not fall far from the tree, I was a testament to that. 

You were the root and I the branch of the tree that hesitated to sprout for 13 years. 

But when I did, I was a mirror to the root that birthed and held me together.

As above, so below. 

This was us.

“Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar”

“Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar”

“Ash-hadu an la ilaha-ill Allah”

“Ash-hadu an la ilaha-ill Allah”

The Imam sounds the Adhan, signalling that it was just after 5 pm.

I glance across the street, peering through the clouds of dust risen by the vans that zoomed past, trying to make out the silhouette of your extremely high waisted trousers and worn out brown leather bag- your fashion taste was that of Mr Bean.

The ebbeh street seller has just finished packing her obnoxiously large silver pan that housed the yellowy delicacy made with palm oil, crabs, cassava, fish and loads and loads of lemon juice and spice. 

You have always cautioned me against eating ebbeh not made by Yama- but mother’s cooking has always been the tastiest and safest to your picky taste buds, no other cooking could hold a candle to hers. 

The nearby shops started shutting their iron casted doors, clacking and bolting to retreat to their back rooms and answer the call to prayer.

Kotoh Amadou leaves one door ajar to accommodate the small figure sitting on the side of it in her green and cream uniform, black school bag held tightly in her arms, with her legs crossed, as she has always done waiting for you to scoop her into your arms and walk home.

“Assalamu’alaikum warahmatullahi”

“Assalamu’alaikum warahmatullahi”

I heard Kotoh Amadou mutter from the small, dimly lit space behind the counter of his shop that housed the red patterned, rectangular prayer mat, with tassels loosely hanging on the shorter ends.

My signal that Asr prayers have ended. 

With eyes still fixated on the space across the road, I occasionally counted the number of vans against that of taxis that skidded along quickly, routinely hitting the pothole that made its presence known confidently in the middle of the road. I wondered if it knew it was an inconvenience from the mutters of curses drivers and passengers alike hurled at the ground every time they hit it.

I used this time to practice counting from fifty to one hundred in French. I just knew this was going to be your challenge for me today, and I was ready to win again. 

We were in sync like that.

“Soixante dix huit, soixante dix neuf, soixante-“

I am interrupted by the scent of hazelnut and fresh warm dough that travelled to my nostrils from the direction Kotoh Amadou, who appeared with a tapalapa split in the middle- one half of the doughy bread oozing with chocolate spread, and the other glistening with the melted Anchor butter- just as I liked it. 

Usually, you would hand it to me if you were later than anticipated, your way of apologising for keeping me waiting. 

I thanked him and chomped away at the bread. If you were staring at me eating right now from across the street, you would say: “Mama, only thieves eat that fast, take your time, the food isn’t running away”

So I heeded the sound of your voice counselling me in my mind and took my time, I wanted to leave some to share with you. I promise I counted to ten during every bite, but I was really hungry and you were taking too long.

I am sorry.

Yayi, is that why you didn’t come today? Was I too greedy? Did I eat like a thief?

The once bright orange sun has turned golden as it disappeared into the clouds across the street. I had envisioned you appearing in front of it, the vanishing sun forming a semi-circle above your head as heroes do in the Soap operas we watched in the compound. 

The heroes always appeared and scooped up their princesses.

Yama yanked my arm and continuously responded to my nagging questions which made a 3-minute walk feel like 20 minutes of agony with

“Yayi is at home, he has been waiting for you”

The Adhan for Maghrib prayers echoed in the distance. Mother had come to get me from Kotoh Amadou’s shop at sunset, it was taboo to be roaming the streets at this hour. “Timis is the playtime for jinns mama, you should be indoors whenever you hear the call to Maghrib prayers” Yama always advised.

“How come I did not see him across the street today” I interrogated her on our walk home.

She halted to tie her wrapper a little tighter, darted her eyes at me with a glance that said “you are too inquisitive for your age”- I hear this a lot in voices and looks.

We resumed our walk and I paused my interrogation of my mother to greet the shopkeeper Tapha.

“Did he use another road today?” I resumed my inquiry.

“Why would he use another road?” I whispered to myself.

He must’ve seen how greedy I was, I knew it. 

We are in sync like that.

And now he is angry with me. Maybe I should count to twenty during every bite next time.

“Yayi come clean my buttocks”, I yelled from the toilet after finishing my morning poop before getting ready for school.

My 5-year-old tongue has fondly substituted the “d” in “daddy” and the “m” in “mama” for a “y”.

So daddy became “Yayi”

And mama became “Yama”- and it was a language only us 4 understood, it was our world.

“Yayi!!!!” I shouted again.

“Yayi if you don’t come here in 5 seconds I won’t save any bread for you after school” I threatened.

A few minutes passed.

The stench of my droppings is now suffocating as I sat on the red and black dotted Mickey Mouse stool you had bought me at Serrekunda market without much convincing. 

Yama peered from the door, “do you want me to come to clean you?” she inquired.

“No! Go and bring Yayi here right now!” I asserted.

“Yayi is busy, allow me to quickly wash you up or you’ll be late for school” she begged.

I reluctantly agreed- I hate being late for school. You loved that about me. 

School was our thing. Our love for academia and proving our intelligence bonded us.

We were in sync like that.

“Come phone call for you-it’s Yayi ”

I quickly slipped into my black polished school shoes and darted across the living room- climbing onto my green stool to reach the handset that hung on the wall.

“You, you Yayi, where are you? Did you not hear me calling out to you to come to clean my buttocks this morning” I snarled down the transmitter.

“Mama, I got on a plane in the sky, I am in London. I miss you” a voice that sounded like you transmitted back to me.

You sound tired. You sound far away. Very far away. I don’t know where London is. 

I just know it isn’t here, and you got on a plane without me. 

We were not in sync like that.

You never came and scooped me up.

Here, in this living room in The Gambia, dressed for Nursery 3 in a cream oversized blouse with green ankle length skirt, at 5 years old, I learnt that love could leave without saying goodbye.

Home · Self care

5 REASONS you’re not achieving your goals- ending the cycle of New Year, same you.

The New Year often acts as a tabula rasa for our lives. An anticipated restart button to reach again for our elusive goals abandoned the previous year, as well as new resolutions.
From fitness to career and mental New Year’s resolutions, the month of January sees many people motivated to go for bigger and better- be their best selves, it’s your hot girl year. Until the romanticisation of implementing new habits get jettisoned and reality sets.
Here are five things I have recognised that previously hindered me from achieving my New Year goals- which you might identify within yourself stops you from achieving your goals in general.

1. Setting goals that are not yours.

In your bid to grow and develop a better career, improved fitness routine or better relationships- start your journey with some introspection to discern what season each goal fits.

Everybody around you projecting a particular positive standard should be inspirational. However, that does not mean that’s the standard for you at that stage of life. If your season requires a level 60 push, forcing yourself to output 100 effort will eventually leave you overwhelmed, and you will crash and burn before fulfilling the end goal.

Your goals don’t have to be big and grand to make sense to anyone. As long as it is tailored to your needs and challenges you just enough without breaking you- it is valid.

2. Your low self-esteem is affecting your self-discipline.

“The feeling of being valuable is a cornerstone of self-discipline because when one considers oneself valuable, one will take care of oneself in all the ways that are necessary.”M Scott Peck, The Road less travelled.

One of the reasons achieving our goals can be difficult is our fickle self-discipline. You can’t adopt a new habit of waking up at 5 am every morning. Go to the gym. Cook and eat three balanced meals a day. Developing healthy relationships and excelling in your career- if you do not feel valuable enough to have the rewards of that routine.

Alongside implementing a plethora of new goals, the foundation of successfully executing these resolutions is identifying and asserting your value to yourself. Ultimately, if you see yourself as a valuable being, you will maintain the discipline to give yourself the best life has to offer.

3. Overwhelming yourself by implementing every goal at once.

There are 12 months in the year. You will be setting yourself up for failure by introducing your brain to 10 new habits in month one. Your brain needs time to adjust to new routines.

If it feels overexerted, it will revert to old comfortable patterns. And you will be left feeling demotivated and discouraged at your lack of consistency.
To achieve large-scale resolutions, you have to break up your goals into bite-size chunks. For example, if the goal is to improve your fitness by working out five times a week- it will be unfair to your body to throw yourself into it from week 1. You will work up to that goal by working out two times a week in month one, then gradually increasing the frequency every month- this challenges you but isn’t as strenuous for your brain as the former.

Allow yourself to work up to your goals. Transformation still happens when you take steady steps instead of massive leaps.

4. Our need for immediate gratification.

The reality is, long term goals require patience, time, discipline and consistency to execute successfully. In our society of ‘next-day delivery’ and ‘lose 30 lbs in one week drinking slim tea’, we have evolved into beings driven by quick results. And when the reward does not come in fast enough- we quit. Because “if it hasn’t happened in a month, it won’t work.” 

“Delaying gratification is a process of scheduling the pain and pleasure of life in such a way as to enhance the pleasure by meeting and experiencing the pain first and getting it over with.”- M Scott Peck

In the quote above, the pain symbolises the discipline of showing up every day for yourself, even if there isn’t a visible result quite yet.

There are no immediate gratifications for long term goals- learn to trust your process and believe in the pleasure at the end of the road.

5. Shiny-object syndrome.

You have somehow convinced yourself that you need the modelled home office set up to avert your procrastination or start that business. All the planners advertised to be more organised. The gym accessories or a Gymshark decked out fitness gear wardrobe to kickstart your fitness goals. 

You can have the best equipment and resources needed to execute your dreams at your disposal, but if the issues highlighted in the previous points are not improved on, you will never feel ready. Start where you are and find ways to make what you currently have work for you when commencing your journey. You will never feel 100% ready to transform your life. But the more steps you gradually take utilising everything you have now, the more confident you become in achieving your goals.

The beauty of life is that we constantly grow and better ourselves across different aspects. Depending on the aspiration, we can become immensely overwhelmed by the changes needed to evolve. And change can be scary while old habits lurk around the corner pulling us back into familiarity and comfort. But it is in this fear that we uncover the highest version of ourselves- if we persist. So this year, I hope you get better at chasing and achieving everything you have aspired to, with a middle finger up to fear and uncertainty.

Home · Love

At the crossroads of isolation and wanting partnership-Dating in a pandemic.

“As a young woman raised in a sheltered African home, with strict curfews and stern warnings to avoid boys and bury my head in my books, I have mastered the art of seclusion”

Today’s post is an extension of my mind at hours when I ponder on life and fulfilment beyond career or financial goals. And since coming to the realisation that my husband will not meet me by breaking into my house, I’ll have to explore the nuances around dating.

Dating as an introvert presents many challenges; the addition of a mentally draining Covid-19 pandemic has only just added to its endless list of “ifs” and “buts”. For the singletons who happen to be introverts, we have spent a great deal of the pandemic nurturing our isolation and fortifying the walls of self-sufficiency. This poses a challenging post pandemic reality; where flirtatious dms and “talking stages” begotten during quarantine, with the expectation of blossoming into a physical dating interaction is put to the test.

As a young woman raised in a sheltered African home, with strict curfews and stern warnings to avoid boys and bury my head in my books, I have mastered the art of seclusion. It isn’t a state I dread. In fact, I love being in solitary with the black-out curtains and thousands of Grey’s Anatomy episodes carrying me through nights of introspection. I seldom find a partner who entices me enough to easily penetrate the high towers of solitude I am locked in. And when I do, without hesitation the tower completely liquefies leaving me vulnerable without healthy boundaries.

The past year spent in multiple rounds of lockdowns have been an eye-opening journey. Endless hours spent in my sanctuary has consolidated the love for my own company and my distaste for small talk or premature sexual advancements. Yet, in this awareness, a yearning for a complimenting company arose. Someone whose presence will cuddle me through nights of unending conversations on existence theories. Someone my children will call daddy and run around playgrounds with. Him, someone that I get to face life’s challenges and celebrate life’s wins with. Someone whose company I would relinquish my isolation for, in a heartbeat. And the realisation that I will have to date, and put myself out there to make this possible, was bothersome.

Have you seen the dating streets these days? It’s all wrapped in a Pandora’s box filled with 2 year talking stages, narcissists dressed up as “nice guys” and boyyyyy let’s not even get into the normalisation of ghosting. But despite all of these cautions, I am a lover and I have always believed that when I am ready, there will definitely be someone out there for me.

In isolation, yearning for my type, I run to Hinge but find myself quickly deleting the dating app after a day of being overwhelmed by 50+ matches who just could not be him. Online dating has garnered mass amounts of humans looking to connect and escape their loneliness thanks to the pandemic. Unfortunately, humans have their shortcomings regarding honesty about their intentions. Being encapsulated by my healing; a journey of self-discovery and self-acceptance, a journey of pain and joyful revelations, my patience for the games that come with dating is meagre. 

The ease of Lockdown provides the possibility for a more authentic dating experience in person, but here I am, afraid of renouncing my solitary comfort for a fleeting romance that might leave my heart aching again. I have spent a great deal of time being my own source of dopamine and serotonin- what will happen to the towers if I head on out there and accept his provision of love? What will happen if after multiple dates and getting lost in each other’s arms, he leaves? Have I learnt to healthily deal with the possible rejections that dating comes with?

Dating after over a year in a pandemic presents a plethora of conundrums surrounding social interactions. What are the appropriate questions to ask on a first date nowadays? Am I grilling him too much if I ask the vital questions that will determine our compatibility from the jump? Should I just stick to the shallow surface level questions? How slow should we go? How fast can we run? How safe is he? Will I lose myself a little too much in his compliments coming out of a stage where the only compliments I was showered with erupted from my lips? At the first sign of discomfort, will I run and lock myself in the highest room in the tower?

How do you put up enough walls but not too much that you keep everyone out. And not too little that you end up self-sabotaging and betraying your boundaries?

Am I too naive in the type of love I envision? Him, the one that will continue life’s journey with me is a lover with an addictive saccharine sweetness that does not run dry, a siren, patient, authentic, confident, warm and intelligent with flaws he bears open.

This inner discourse unearths many questions. Here I am, a lover wanting the elusive experience of intimacy, building and loving life with a partner yet unequivocally making love to my isolation. But if there is anything I know, it is that the lover in me will remain open enough to embrace the lover for me. And together we will bask in the harmonious silence that embraces our nights through thousands of Grey’s Anatomy episodes or nights filled with our laughter and soft moans echoing in a home filled with love.

Home · Spirituality

A BECKONING HOME: Unearthing my spirituality

Spirituality is a term that encompasses many practices, belief systems, rituals and a common connection to something greater, something unseen, something within. From the Hindu Yogi to the Ifa Priestess, the millennials on TikTok adorning themselves with trendy healing crystals; there are experiences of a divine attachment beyond the capacity of what the human mind can fathom.

I cannot think of a better word to summarise my spiritual reality other than home. Like, a peaceful and fruitful home; where abundance never runs dry or come with endless superficial conditions. A home that embraces me with compassion, support and clarity. A home not bound by colonial practices my ancestors were coerced into accepting through Abrahamic religions. So here is a glimpse into my never ending journey home.

“I am born from spirit, so spirituality is me”. I have uttered this statement many times over without actually grasping its full meaning, until August 2020. I am indeed born from spirit; to a mother whose tears moisturised her supple skin for 13 years at the hope of having me grow in her womb someday. To a father whose DNA is unquestionable in my appearance. For 13 years, Allah, Jesus and traditional priests were pleaded and bargained with for my soul’s release to earth.

“I am born from spirit, so spirituality is me”

It was 7 days. The villagers chanted, drummed and swayed under 7 sunsets beneath star lit skies of a remote village in Sierra Leone and gave sacrifices at 7 sunrises. The melody of their chants called on me, the rhythm of their drums guided my soul’s steps into this human journey. On the cold hard ground she slept on, my mother swallowed 7 balls of “the worst food” she has ever had – it had to be exactly 7.

A challenging 11 months 3 weeks pregnancy and an emergency caesarian later, the only surviving child that night bellowed through Mabeseneh hospital. A forced ejection from the warm comfort of her mother’s womb where the doctor said “even if she was in there for 7 years, you would not go into labour”.

Along the way, my spirit became confined by the ego. “Don’t dance to the rhythm of the drums in your head on the side walk, people will think you are crazy”. Rules, regulations, ambitions, plans; human standards limited to only that which can be seen, touched, processed by our fickle brains. My spirit suffocated.

Alone at 1am, in my bedroom in London, in the absence of an entire village chanting, drumming, swaying, I prayed and beckoned my spirit back home. The breath was revitalising.

Spirituality is me with all the stars and ancestral DNA that aligned to manifest into a person. I am home. I am the passion and sensuality of Ọṣun, folded into saccharine kisses that entrap your lips in an ever flowing river your soul unearths as its intended habitat; with a body that dissolves under your touch, pulling you into a world that your ego isn’t welcomed in. I am the personification of Ọba’s nurture and pain; that lovingly tends to your wounds after a long day of battle but when betrayed, floods everything with my emotions. I am the confidence and thunder summoned by Ṣàngó’s wrath once scorned; the calmness of Yemọja that leads the thunder away and brings you calmer rivers. I am my ancestors’ talents, traumas, lessons and blessings.

Spirituality is me existing beyond duality. The zone in between human perceptions of “good” and “bad”, black and white, up and down, happy and sad. My spiritual experience is embracing the divinity of my source; a divine experience that cannot always be seen, written about or touched. My mind and body will continue digging, bringing my spirit up for air; with the confidence to say “fuck you”, raining down eternal flame on my betrayers and the compassion to show up for other entities existing in this universe. Spirituality is the knowledge that the source of my existence never depletes, so neither does my love, good days or bad days; and I embrace all of these human experiences like the fleeting clouds they are- because life on this planet would be boring without our shadows next to us.

So my spirituality could look like a rushed 10 minutes meditation or a 30 minute yoga practice. It could be hours getting lost in the movement of my body to symphonies that penetrate my soul or hours in stillness and silence with tears soiling my pillows. It could be moments with my hands clasped and knees to the ground in prayer, or talking out loud updating every other spirit that walks with me about our day and asking for advice. Spirituality is my every breath, my every dream, day dream, blog post I write, tweet I make on Beyoncé’s internet, angry paragraphs I send when I hurt, big smiles and giggles I share when I am overjoyed; the confused days, the days filled with clarity and direction, the softness and sharpness of my tongue, my abstinence or the moans that accompany my orgasms. Spirituality is all of me.