Wherever You Go, There You Are

Erin Roberts
April 24, 2023
4 min read
Photo By

Why knowing that I can always drop down to meet the essence of who I am in every moment gives me comfort.

I used to travel so much it felt like my office was in the sky. I used work and travel as an escape. An escape from sitting with some of the difficult feelings that are part of the human experience. An escape from contemplating who I was.

But you know what? I never escaped. Not truly.

Because wherever I went, there I was.

My limiting beliefs, my fears and the ever present feeling of not being enough — never, ever being enough — they travelled with me. Like luggage. I carried them wherever I went.

I can still remember some difficult moments that felt so utterly painful in cities all over the world. I just couldn’t escape. But it didn’t stop me from trying.

Because sitting with my feelings was too painful. It felt like slicing myself open. And I imagined it would be like pandora’s box. Once it’s opened everything inside comes out. And what to do then? With all the messiness? I envisioned carnage. And bloodshed. My own blood being shed.

So I kept reading books, listening to podcasts, going to retreats and lectures, working with coaches. All the things except one: sitting with my feelings.

I knew I had to walk to the fire to get to the other side. But who wants to walk through fire? Not. Me.

But then the world got quiet and I had more time to contemplate. For a long while I found other ways to escape. Reading books like it was my job (which technically it is but not these kind).

“And then the day came when the risk to remain tight in the bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.”

— Anaïs Nin —

But then it became too painful to stay as I was. I don’t remember a particular moment. I just remember slowly realizing that living with my monkey mind and the ever present feeling of not enoughness became too painful.

I knew I had change and to do that I’d need to enter the fire.

Reflecting back now I remember it being easier than it probably was at the time. Now I’m on the other side. But entering the fire? It was so hard.

How I did it was how I do anything. One step at a time. Following the next right thing and then the next and the next.

I started spending more time in the country, long walks in the country, time spent communing with nature.

That set the foundation.

More meditation, more mindfulness.

It all helped.

But the work was sitting with the feelings as they came up. Holding my hand over my heart and telling myself, “You’re okay sweetheart. I’ve got you.”

It felt like soothing a little girl, and perhaps it was exactly like that. Sitting with things long pushed down. Feelings coming up to be seen and heard.

At first it was dozens of times a day and then slowly less and less frequently.

And as they were seen and heard the difficult things that came up just sort of dissolved in a way.

It felt like clouds dissipating as the sun comes out. They just kind of float away. And once they clear you can see the sun’s rays shining through and eventually the sun itself sits bold and bright in the blue, blue sky.

“Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom.”

— Aristotle —

As the process evolved, I met my true nature more and more frequently. The essence of who I am. Which is all things. My true self defies labels but it is always there.

I’m still very much a work in progress. We all are.

But now it gives me such comfort knowing that wherever I go, there I am. Because no matter what is happening in my life, my essential self, the true nature of who I am, is always there. I can drop down into it at any moment just by being right here, right now.

And that feeling that I get when I meet it, is everything. It feels like I am the sun when I meet my true self. Which I suppose I am.

Knowing that everything is perfect even if it doesn’t look that way. That’s what my essential self tells me: “You’re okay sweetheart. I’ve got you.” Now I know it is and it does.

Originally published on Medium here: