light chasers: never settling in ashes, they rise into the light

Surround yourself with the light chasers. They’re the ones that have edges and foraged through darkness, they have gripped the earth, pummeled themselves and began again. They are the light beacons that know pain, but they don’t move from pain, they move from love. They are the ones that understand the others in their pain without lessening themselves or another from such depths. These will be the movers and shakers that witness the beauty in the breakdown, but they don’t stop there. They are the ones that will challenge, perhaps trigger, others by the light they give.
You understand the struggles faced by what others perceive because you know it well, you lived there for a time. But you moved on. You built a life from darkness into light and your mission will be to give birth to others by witness or reaching out your hand, it is the extension of your heart. You open your heart and support another’s breath. Without shame, without judgment. With loving and compassionate eyes. It is not my pain or darkness that matters, it is not my story that is for an audience. That is the past, I don’t live there anymore.
My hope is to move you in the present, through real time, not by happened to you; it is witnessing you through love, in the now, and steady myself while holding space for you to do the same. Only you can heal yourself. And there’s nothing attention-seeking about it. Every action, inaction, relationship, and experience will be drawing forth leading you to choice. You have the power to change yourself, take away the audience, what you have left is your own damn fire and fucking flame to burn bright and be the light. Never settling for the ashes that once was.

stephanie birch

Half the gate by fog, half the gate by light

Through the fog, there was light on the other side. Half of the bridge, dark and full gloom yesterday summer afternoon. The other half of this infamous gate, golden rays pierced the eyes from the west, beaming with warmth and grace.
We are the keepers of both the dark and light, one cannot exist without the other. Some will take ahold of such gloom and create forest fires from pain. Build relationships up only to tear them down; this is the fog, murky visions and desperate hands attempting to control via pain. That is the thing about darkness, behaviors established in attempts to control others and the external. When the ways are not granted, or when tasked to step up in esteem, it is choice up for ripening. You can stay the same or expand yourself into light.
That’s the thing with light, on one hand inviting yet terrifying. Darkness breeds comfort and staying small. The light beckons one to get uncomfortable, make shifts that are incredibly challenging. Move out of relationships of neediness and lack binding you to stand tall with your heart forward and up. The mind will work tirelessly attempting you to cave back into comfort, to stay in small relationships that don’t challenge or expand you. It is the mind that twists words and boasts action.
That’s the thing about action, it requires movement, it requires one to act. Words are taken to paper or channeled by chords, they look pretty or charged, at times a melodic driver, they’ll need a composer, you. It is following through with doing the very things you said you would do. It’s a practice. An intention. A pretty pose, font, voice, signage is but one gear to the grind.
Darkness is temporary unless you’re living to prove its cause. The light will carry you into new strengths, it will be sought by living outside of your comfort zone and choosing to rise up in love. You start with loving the shit out of yourself first and saying fuck yes even when it scares the shit out of you. I’m scaring the shit out of myself everyday to stay soft, even when faced with hardened shells of another. This is the light. This is the love.

stephanie birch

Sometimes the scariest action of all is choosing the light

Comfort is like an addiction, pulsed into the veins. The tribal efforts tethered to society for gain. We speak of gain as all-knowing and forever fighting, as if there’s an honor badge at hammering life with every nail. Would you believe in yourself enough to walk away from all that you know, appearing over the ledge? Your mind says the waves are trickery, the heart says jump. You’ll have to navigate the incongruent themes between the heart and the mind. Remember this: the mind will tire first, ahead of the body, ahead of your heart. It is the mind that is tired.

The body becomes tasked to freeze or take flight, would you be willing to jump at the leap of faith? Security is the chain that links you to staying the same. You’ll have to step to the edge, eyes closed or wide, at times clear, most often not. You’ll stand at the edge of the unknown, with heart-pounds and belly pits. Maybe your voice halts or breath becomes gasped exposing the lump of your truth; you know exactly what to do. Letting go of all that you know. You must be willing to take a key to the handcuffs at your back; recognizing you’ll only be a prisoner to the stories you repeat, the patterns you continue to stitch. Your body will talk to you in ways, by seduction of truth, it will resonate in your bones. Continuing to ignore your intuition will sacrifice your life; you’ll continue to repeat the same wounds with different faces.

This is why traveling into the unknown is vital. To take a stand for your Self, the one that no longer clings to the past. Truth isn’t easy, it is painful and gutting; sharing it is not enough. You must act on your life, only you can heal yourself. Pain is a beautiful motivator to change your life. Sometimes the scariest action of all is choosing the light.

stephanie birch

We choose

Healing is a choice. It is a requirement that you crawl inside of yourself. There will be tensions and triggers that often pulse in your body, listen to them well, feel them without blame. There’s no solitude in blaming the other, or the past. Your triggers are the very places you must go inside. It is a cue to check in.
You can clench your jaw, hold tightly onto pain, as a currency for attention. You can receive from others and take to comfort of the superficial. You can exhaust yourself chasing connection of the other. So afraid to be abandoned by the external, you’ll fold and fall and gravel at the doors of short comfort. This, my dear, is a hard pill, you fear the ones who may leave you, so reach, molding yourself into another. Know this: you’ve long ago left yourself.
You long for words and touch from others to fill yourself. To heal. To feel. To love. To forgive.
Come back to choice. It is the path traveled alone.
Only you can heal yourself.
Only you can feel yourself.
Only you can love yourself.
Only you can forgive yourself.
When you forgive yourself, you forgive all. You untie the ropes of blame, you untether yourself from shame, and release yourself from darkness into light. Again and again. It is not easy, it is absolutely necessary. You change your world within, one breath, one wing span at a time, one step at a time. Your life can change in a moment, if you so choose.

Fill yourself with so much love so that it overflows into your neighbor’s cup.

stephanie birch