What if all judgment is really self-judgment?

Are we projecting onto others the feelings and fears we really have about ourselves? I was blown away this month because someone I love thought an email I sent was a mean put-down instead of a light-hearted suggestion. It broke my heart the person saw me as someone capable of wanting to hurt her or doing such a thing, but the whole incident turned out, as it always does in life, to be a great teacher for me.

It hurts when someone you love doesn’t see you clearly or believes you to be someone you aren’t. So after feeling blown away, and getting my breath back, I began to explore how much we determine who others are, through our own psyche and level of consciousness. Knowing she felt that way was validating because I had experienced that feeling of dislike and push back from her in our connection for a long time, even though she kept telling me everything was fine.

I also had to look at my own feelings about myself because what I teach is everything is true. That meant I had to look at the things I really didn’t like about myself as well. One of the biggest questions that stuck its ugly head up was why I was so uncomfortable with her feelings toward me.

Part of it was because she is an incredibly important and beloved person in my life and part of it was because it meant a huge loss that was reflective of my own family history of loss and disappointment. It hurt and it brought up a lifetime of unresolved pain I needed to address within myself. In an instant, it took me right back to being a five-year old sitting alone in a dark kitchen, listening to her mother and her mother’s friend gleefully laughing and pitching empty beer cans into the metal trash from the table just outside the back door. Clearly, I had work to do.

When you get older and if you are ill, being alone becomes a very real issue. Clearly, we are alone when we are born, meaning no one can decide for us whether or not we will sign up for this experiment and become a living child. We choose that. And we are alone when we die.

We decide when our contract is up and when we need to start a new journey. Fortunately for me, very early on, maybe out of desperation, I felt a presence I call spirit with me. Whether it was a machination of a desperate child, or the truth of the Universe, it has always been real to me. I realized I had forgotten that truth and there was some fear this person I so loved was gone emotionally and spiritually. I took a deep breath and reminded myself who I knew her to be and I knew in some way, she would be back. I had forgotten I grew up alone. I forgot I raised my kids alone. I forgot my entire life I made it through every challenge, and believe me there were some doozies, with the hand of Spirit at my back. I needed to reconnect to that reality and do it quickly because the biggest adventure, next to being born, is dying and it was staring me in the face. All I could do was cry and be with the enormity of that realization. A certain peace followed. I felt Spirit’s hand at my back and realized it had never left.

So when we project something negative or positive onto others, we need to pause and just reflect on how that truth is also about us. It’s a fertile reflection with great gifts. It’s not an exaggeration to say, everything is about us. That’s not ego speaking. It’s is simply a truth of consciousness that reminds us this place is a school; a divine experiment that shows us the truth of who we are. And please, do your reflecting and exploration with an enormous of love for yourself because it takes great courage and passion to be willing to wake up and realize the gifts this lifetime has for you. Don’t miss them.

My greatest gift was to remember that in whatever time I had, I needed to get back to being the spirit I am and doing the work of spirit that fills me up and give me purpose and great joy. I needed to stop worrying about what was going on outside of me and focus on what was going on inside of me. And I needed to remember no matter who was nearby, Spirit always has my back, and when you are ready to check it out, Spirit has yours as well.