Today is the first morning in over 8 weeks that I have opened my eyes, and straight away haven’t been met by either fear, sorrow, pain, or shame.
I returned from Bali 5 days ago, and I have felt overwhelmed. It’s fair to say that the overwhelm doesn’t stay with me all day. It tends to meet me, as I open my eyes, and as I begin to move through my day, it dissipates.
I had thought that coming home would allow me to feel ‘back to my old self’ but then I remembered, my old self no longer exists. The version of me before the passing of my Mum, the version of me before Bali, she is no more.
I realise I’m jumping ahead, so let me bring you up to speed since my last blog over 2 weeks ago.
Back then, I had arrived in Gili Island, after a challenging 10 days in Ubud. I was optimistic, and felt a deeper connection to the Island, being near the water, no traffic, and the energy that my little beach hut brought to me.
The deep pain and sorrow I had felt in Ubud, didn’t seem as heavy in Gili. I had also met a lovely girl Amy (31) who I connected with on the journey to Gili. It felt so nice to know that there was someone that I could meet up for walks, snorkelling and drink coconuts with. Just knowing that I had someone there, provided me with just enough safety in my body to feel better than I had done.
Gili felt good. Maybe this would be my turning point? Maybe this would be the time that I started to enjoy this journey and my exploration of this marvellous country?
My first day there, I fell over. I fell over nothing I may add, but I fell over, and cut my had quite badly. I cleaned it up, popped a plaster on, and continued with my day. Amy and I hired bicycles, and cycled all over the Island. Stopping to drink coconuts, and enjoying the sheer beauty of Gili. We both agreed that the Island brought us both a sense of calm that Ubud hadn’t. It was medicine to us both, and we were grateful to be there. I have to say that Ubud is and was the most magical place, that allowed me to go to the deepest parts of myself. To feel emotions that I never knew existed within me. I am, and will always be immensely grateful to Ubud, but on reflection, I do wonder if I stayed a little too long.
Amy was staying in a Hostel in Gili, where she met Adam. Adam was also 31, and on his own journey. We instantly hit it off. Adam was warm, and kind, with a good heart. The 3 of us spent time together, and had a great night out dancing and having fun. I felt connected to both Amy & Adam, and even though there was an 11 year age gap, I knew they were with me for a reason. I only spent 3 days with them, and decided to move on. Even though they asked me to join them in Lombok, It felt more aligned to me to part ways, and explore the next part of my journey alone again.
Even though my time with them was short, they both hold a very special place in my heart, more than they will know.
I spent 5 nights in Gili, and on the 4th day I was hit with grief once more. This was a reminder that it was always around. It hit me hard once again. I missed home so much, and if I could have come home that day, I would have. Once again, due to the time difference, I couldn’t call home. It felt so heavy, and I felt fearful, and low. I would feel hungry, and order food, only to feel sick the second it was put down to me. I tried to close my eyes, but was met with fear, shame, and sorrow.
‘Why was shame here? Why was I feeling shame all of a sudden? Dear God, as if this wasn’t hard enough, hear shame was, like a reminder of all that was wrong with me, and all the ways I was not a ‘good person’
This was new, and it felt like utter shit. Suddenly, I’m feeling shame from things I had never felt shame about before? It was like an overload of emotions drowning me. I felt suffocated, and struggled to create space to breathe through it.
It lasted all day, with it passing after an hour or so, only to return 30 minutes later.
‘Will this ever end?’
‘What if this never goes away?’
‘What if I always feel this shit?’
God, please help me, please give me peace.
What is the lesson here? What was I here to learn?
I went to bed that night, and woke up feeling lighter. ‘THANK YOU’, I said aloud, ‘Thank you for giving me grace.
I decided to stay another night in Gili, as had checked in to a beautiful hotel right on the beach. Yesterday had been a right off from the second I woke up, and I wanted to enjoy my last day in this wonderful Island.
I wanted to eat the beautiful food, swim in the Ocean, and enjoy the sunset once last time.
Of course, there were a few more bumps in the road, which included a Woman crashing her bike head on in to me, resulting in a cut on my thigh, and a bruise the size of my fist. On top of that, the light on my bike was not working, and having to navigate my way back in the pitch black with no light on my bike or street lights, was no easy task.
I went to bed that night, and didn’t sleep as had a fever, and the cut on my hand from 5 days previous had become infected. It was a quick trip to the emergency Dr for antibiotics, then I was on my merry way to my next stop Uluwatu.
Before leaving, I intuitively felt in to what I needed. The answer was clear, it was time to just BE. No need to share, no need to upload videos for YouTube, no need to blog or vlog, so I didn’t. This was a full body YES, and from the second I arrived in Uluwatu , my heart and soul responded in the most beautiful and calm way. I only had 5 days left, and I was going to be as present as I possibly could.
My hotel in Uluwatu was called Gravity, and it was stunning. I had booked the the Raja Suite, which in my opinion was the best in the hotel, with the most spectacular views across the Island.
I visited 3 stunning beaches, Biggin Beach, Suluban Beach, and Padang Padang Beach. I also spent time watching the Sunset in Ritual Beach Club. The staff, the people, the food, the room, all felt so good for my Soul. I was happy here, and wished I had come sooner.
I was only booked up in Uluwatu for 2 days, and my next stop was Nusa Dua. Nusa Dua was very beautiful too, and as it was my last few days, I made sure that I pushed the boat out and booked myself in to another lovely hotel on the beach.
Both hotels were stunning, and both places added immense value to my experience in Bali. It felt good, and although I connected with more lovely people, most of my time was spent alone.
During my last day in Nusa Dua, I got up for Sunrise once more, and as I sat on a broken tree stump on the beach looking out to sea, suddenly, I felt a feeling wash over my entire body. Suddenly I felt more calm and connected than I had in weeks. Suddenly, I grabbed my pen and my journal and began to write. This was not coming from me, and the words I was writing were not coming from the human Jill, they were coming from something much greater. Suddenly, as I began to write, I was met with the deepest connection I had felt to myself in a very long time.
The downloads, the messages, the lessons, the wisdom, all of it just pouring through me, and out of me on to my journal.
As I read it back, I laughed, and I laughed some more. Then I cried, then I laughed again. Then I ran in to the sea and completely immersed myself in the water, and welcomed each wave as it moved towards me. I lay back on the shore and allowed myself to fully feel the sand on my body, and the water to crash against my skin, only to dissipate and alchemise as it reached the shore.
This was it, this was the lesson. Every challenge, a test, every person, a messenger. It felt like a light had suddenly gone on, and everything fell clear.
I will share what I wrote in my journal that morning with you all in a separate share, as I feel because it was channeled through me, that it warrants it’s own space.
It was finally time to head to the airport and begin my journey back to Glasgow, so after a nice Balinese massage and some more reflexology, I set off on my 24 hour journey back home. I didn’t want a repeat of the flight out, so I made sure I was fully relaxed and hydrated.
I was flying from Bali to Dubal first, and I sat with a lovely lady and her family. We got talking and she shared with me that sadly her brother had taken his own life 20 years ago. She had been very close to him, and missed him dearly. She went on to share with me that she always felt him close to her, and whenever she saw a rainbow, she knew he was nearby.
She asked me if I had asked my Mum for signs she was close by, to which I said I kind of do, but maybe that I wasn’t specific enough. I told her, I didn’t ask for rainbows, but I did believe she was with me.
As I got off the flight, I headed off to the Apple store, I needed their help, as I had got an Indonesian sim card whilst I was in Bali, and need them to pop the wee pin thing in my iPhone to allow me to switch my old sim back.
When I put my old sim card back in my phone, I realised I’d done it wrong. The shop was busy, and I didn’t want to ask again, so I left it as it was. I noticed a message flash up on my phone to say that I had 21 unheard voicemails. As I clicked on the message it took me to 21 voicemails from 1 person. Only 1 name appeared on the screen in front of me. It read “My Mum”
I had 21 voicemails from My Mum. Right there was my sign from her, and in that moment I felt her with me. The messages dated back to January & February 2021, before her stroke. At this point she was still at home, in her own house. Her voice sounded beautiful, and healthy, unlike the whisper during her last months. In each message she said she loved me, and was just checking in on me. How did I never see these before? Where had they been this whole time?
It was so beautiful, and I began to cry with a mix of emotions. Gratitude for the gift I had received, gratitude for her way of showing me she was with me, but also grief of how much I missed her. The reality that I would never see her human form again felt sad. Never to hold her hand, to hug her, to call her, and have her answer the phone to me the way she did. The realisation that we won’t have her with us this Christmas. That her and I won’t do our traditional Christmas dinner food shop together.
The reality, that I can’t just pop along and see her again.
I was grateful and so sad simultaneously, and I allowed myself grace to honour all of my emotions, as I felt her with me.
I finally arrived home in Glasgow, and was met by Daryl and the kids, closely followed my Sister, and my Niece. It felt so good to be back, and be connected in person with my beautiful family. To fully receive a hug again felt new and welcome.