Owning my Legacy

 
Teodora Tinc Photography

The journey to owning my legacy started 3 years ago. Ian and I had been only dating for 6 short months when he asked me a question that would change my life forever. “Would you like to move in with me and start your dream business?” My hands started to shake and I didn’t know if to cry, scream, feel happy or guilty! Eventually I said yes.

If there’s anything I’m really good at, it’s being passionate and excited. I had so many ideas that I couldn’t wait bring to life! I was finally free to turn all my dreams into reality and nothing was going to hold me back. But as the weeks passed progress was slow and my excitement started to dim. I compared myself to amazing brands and felt frustrated that I couldn’t be like them. I wanted it all to be perfect from the very beginning. Weeks turned into months and fear clouded my days. Doubt creeped in more and more until I become riddled with self hate and paralysing anxiety. I was stuck in a vicious, destructive pattern with no idea how to break it.

I would spend my days pushing myself to exhaustion, completely neglecting and abusing myself. Rest, joy and connection with loved ones was a reward that I didn’t deserve until I could prove that I was worthy. I hated myself for not being successful. The second I opened my eye in the morning hateful and degrading thoughts flooded my mind. Ian would hold me in the shower for hours as I cried and cried. I felt like a failure. I didn’t deserve Ian and the freedom he gave me. I felt so ashamed. But somehow I didn’t give up. I felt so much love from the clients I had and that was enough to keep me going. 

A year later a friend gifted me a bottle of essential oils called Balance. This little bottle changed the course of my life in so many ways. Her gift was so much more than the oil itself. It was a door opening to a life I never knew was possible for me. A life where I can choose how I feel, where I no longer have to be a victim. A life in which I have tools to support and empower myself, where destructive behaviour isn’t ok and I have permission to be happy. I discovered a new world of love and wellness which sparked passion and excitement back into me. I finally understood the value and importance of self care. But my damaging habits were so ingrained in me that creating lasting change overnight was impossible, and this only added to my list of perceived failures.

The following year, on a perfect winters day at the top of a mountain, Ian proposed. I couldn’t believe how loving, kind and giving this man was. I didn’t deserve him. In that moment my future flashed before my eyes and a powerful shift happened inside my heart. I realised I was no longer living just for me. How I chose to live my life was going my to shape my family and impact our future children. I needed to change for them. I needed to be the best version of myself for my family. This vision became my anchor, my biggest why in life and I was ready to try harder than ever.

But no matter how much I had learned and grown as a person, my hateful mindset towards myself didn’t chance. Nothing I did made me feel good enough. It’s as if the more I had to loose the meaner and more brutal I was to myself. Creating a healthy life became another measure of worthiness and I could only focus on the habits I failed to implement. As my little business started to grow I fell deeper in depression to the point that even replying to emails became hard. One Sunday morning I woke up paralysed by anxiety and self hate. I had been pushing myself so much over the years and set unrealistic expectations, that it all got too much. In my heart I felt that I had failed myself, my Ian and our future children. I couldn’t do it any more. I didn’t want to try any more. And so I gave up.

The truth is I was ashamed to admit I needed help. I was afraid to be judged. I wanted to be strong enough to get through this on my own. I wanted to be the perfect person with my own hands. But I couldn’t. I had been seeing a therapist for a few months and some days I felt amazing, but others were unbearable. 3 months before our wedding I welcomed in the help I needed and chose to take medication. Within days the dust settled and I could finally see where things were going seriously wrong. I could see so clearly how badly I was treating myself and realised all this time I wasn’t loving myself. I wasn’t being kind, compassionate and caring to myself! That was the moment I learnt that without self love nothing can flourish. I was finally able to break my hateful patterns and begin to truly heal.

This has been my story for the past few years and with love and acceptance I now close the first chapter of my legacy. I finally feel content and grateful for my journey so far which led me to not only discover myself and the ways I needed to heal, but taught me the lessons I needed to flourish and thrive in the chapters to come. I believe we all have a legacy which impacts so much more than ourselves. How we live our lives, how we treat ourselves and others, our dreams and our daily actions all create ripple effects and impact the lives others. I am now ready to craft my legacy mindfully, with love and kindness, not just for myself but for my future family.

 
Teodora Tinc