- About -
Hello and welcome to Aging Gratefully; I’m so glad you’re here! My name is Rhonda and like you, I wear many different hats every day. I’m 57 years old with a beautiful family and a full-time job. I love spending time with my family and friends, being outdoors, bike riding, hiking, gardening, reading, meditating, going for walks, journaling, Dateline, and watching documentaries. I have a passion for learning how to best take care of myself in a holistic and balanced way, which includes spiritually, professionally, nutritionally, physically, socially, and emotionally.
While I believe it’s imperative we eat clean whole foods, that’s not where nourishment ends.
Nourishment also includes exploring and processing our emotions and feelings. So many of us
have experienced trauma in our lives, whether it be emotional, physical or mental. One is not
“worse” than the other; the side-effects are still the same. Many times, the side effects from
emotional or mental trauma won’t be “seen” because they don’t leave “physical” marks such as
bruises or scars; however, it doesn’t make them less significant.
So many of us experienced trauma in our childhood while others experienced trauma from
emotionally or physically abusive partners. Some of us experienced trauma from someone who
was supposed to be our protector. Many of us created coping mechanisms in our childhood in
order to maintain some sort of mental strength and create some semblance of "normalcy. Some of us have even carried those coping mechanisms into our adulthood not realizing we don’t need them anymore, but we’ve brought them along like a trusted childhood friend. And there are times that some of us have turned to drugs to numb ourselves to avoid feeling. All of these are "temporary fixes" and only prevent us from experiencing our best lives now.
As we navigated childhood into our teenage years and adulthood, we’ve learned along the way
to stuff feelings down. I know for years I had the attitude, “Shit happens and then you die…deal
with it, accept it, and don’t talk about it. It happened, so what?” Many times, we even blame
ourselves and feel shame around it when it was never our fault.
On top of all that, we don’t experience the feelings that come up for us after we’ve experienced
trauma. My experience has been that it’s easier, and feels safer, to stuff my feelings deep down inside so I don’t have be sad or fearful when I have memories or have feelings about something or someone. I didn’t want to feel; I just wanted to live a life that “appeared” flawless; as if I never experienced trauma, sadness, or heartbreak. But feeling our feelings is vitally important in order to heal from our trauma. If we don’t feel our feelings and face our fears head on, we will never experience full healing, lead emotionally healthy lives, or experience healthy and thriving relationships.
It's also extremely important to pay attention where the energy of our feelings is stored in our
bodies. Studies show that fully experiencing our emotions is imperative to our health. Instead
of shoving our emotions and feelings down in our bodies, let’s make it a goal to keep moving
forward in experiencing and feeling our feelings and emotions. Your life could literally depend on it.
By not paying attention to and fully acknowledging and embracing our emotions, the energy they
leave in our bodies can create dis-ease such as cancer.
As I continue to share my story, my hope is you’ll feel compelled to start your journey to self-
healing and join me in open and honest conversations on how to start feeling your feelings,
processing emotions in a healthy way, and start the healing process as you begin to “age
gratefully”. I know you and your life will better for it!