The word Nurture means the process of caring for and encouraging the growth or development of someone or something. This word has come up consistently for me the past 15 years. Questions from healers, therapists....”Jessica do you Nurture yourself?” “How do you Nurture yourself?” You are a nurturer and must nurture yourself!” The one thing I knew to my core was that I did indeed nurture others. It comes natural to me. I nurture people, pets, plants, crystals, and the earth. Nurturing myself did not always come second nature to me. It felt foreign, and uncomfortable, and wrong. I also lied to myself and said, "Why of course I nurture myself. I get my nails done, I do things for myself, blah blah blah blah blahhhhhhhhhhh." If you asked me a year ago if I understood what nurturing myself was I would have said I did. I understood the concept. I even believed I nurtured myself. I now realize that I never really understood it within the core of my being until this past year.
I have personally been on an active spiritual journey for the past 23 years. I have made a career in working as a psychic medium and energy healer. I nurture people for a living and it gives me immense joy and a sense of fulfilled purpose in my life. Working in the realm of healing has also called to me to always search within and always work to better myself, learn and awaken, become more aware, then to go forth and share what I learned. I now take ownership of my limiting belief around nurturing and loving myself. It isn't that I never loved or nurtured myself at all....No.... what happened was throughout my life when I acknowledged that I needed to prioritize my self-care, I would somehow sabotage myself. Sometimes the sabotage would happen right away, sometimes it would happen 6 months or a year later in the form of old patterns creeping to the forefront and slowly taking over my newly loving patterns. Sneaking up on me like a slow poison so I didn't quite notice. The triggers usually were stressful events in my life that awakened fear in me. It stirred up my inner children who somehow freaked out and unconsciously I would start to sabotage myself as a way to protect me resulting in my creating of self-defeating behaviors. These behaviors were ways I would not nurture myself. It would be something as simple as starting to forget to take my vitamins and supplements that assist my body. It would be forgetting to pack my lunch for work and not eating then eating too much when I got home. It would be not making time for myself to go to the gym even though I actually enjoyed it and felt better when I did go. It would be eating foods that had soy, msg, or corn in it which my body has told me repeatedly it is sensitive to and doesn't like it. Other ways I would self-sabotage is by not honoring healthy boundaries in my life. I would often attract people or situations where I would be called to set boundaries for myself or confront unhealthy situations. Then when I would attempt to confront the dysfunction, a great fear would rise up that I wouldn't understand. The fear felt like it would kill me There is no other way to describe its crippling effect. It would knock out of me all my awareness and spiritual teachings and lead me to learned self-defeating behaviors such as avoidance, denial, anxiety, depression, people-pleasing disguised as peace-making, and shoving down my feelings and shutting my mouth. These behaviors were an insult to my core-self. A complete lie of who I really am which is why if felt so terrible. It made me sick and inside the real me was screaming to be fully unleashed. As a result of it making me feel terrible I tried to nurture the pain away with food and self-sabotage.
It was a year ago this came to a head in my life. Without getting deeply into personal life matters, I reached my breaking point and it was the best thing that ever happened to me. Forty years of ignoring myself, sabotaging myself, having times where the real me surfaced and knowing how the true me felt then going back into hiding was just to much for me and thank goodness it was! I was brought to a point where I had to stop and look at myself and why I have allowed certain relationships in my life to have so much power over me. Why I never spoke up and allowed it, Why I couldn't let it continue. I had to pull back and take a huge time out! I didn't realize at the time but this was an act of love and self-nurturance at the time. I made the choice to disengage as a way to stop a pattern and pay attention to what was happening. I also knew I needed to work on myself, and my own strength before I could address this situation. It was, of course, not received well. In this process I have been supported by some, ignored by some, spoken about and whispered about and defriended by some who haven't spoken to me directly nor taken the time to want to see why I made the choice I did. They heard what they heard and made a judgment and that was that. I have been indirectly approached by some in a roundabout judgmental and manipulative way intended to guilt me and play into those old self-deprecating and self-defeating thoughts and behaviors. A few approached me directly trying to understand but showing more concern for how it was impacting the situation than how I was really feeling or what was going on with me. I had to process all this as well. I thank God for the people who stayed by me unconditionally, supporting me, holding me up, pushing me forward, taking the time to let me be heard and feel like what I was going through was important to them. Setting their own agendas aside and helping me process. These are my true soul friends here on this earth and I am so eternally grateful. I had to process through it all even my feelings surrounding the people I felt betrayed or hurt by, or who I had to retreat from, I now understand things better and don't blame them or dwell on them. I just realize that is what happens when Energy shifts....SHIFT HAPPENS!
In the past year I have prioritized myself and my health physically, emotionally, spiritually, and mentally. Some may have perceived that I've done this it at the expense of others, I feel the real expense was the price I paid in the past by losing touch and ignoring my inner self at this expense. If there is no me then I can't be the Mother I need and want to be, the Healer I want to be, I can't be what I need for myself, my boyfriend, etc. After a whole year my patterns have changed, I feel a load lighter and my body is changing, I make time for myself, I am no longer afraid to look at my feelings and stand up for myself. I also can forgive myself for the part I have played and for losing myself in the process. Finding myself again was the best part and knowing I can keep the real me too! As I keep moving forward one day at a time it is still a process, a healing process, a spiritual process, a mental process, an emotional process. I feel stronger and feel I can move forward. As for my relationships I need to always honor my boundaries and myself, keep my spine strong so to speak; exuding out good will, forgiveness, and grace. Allowing my reactions and triggers to be transformed and accepting it all. Not having an agenda or attachment to how things should be or need to be or that others need to understand. We are all entitled to our perceptions and our perceptions are real to us. If they torture us then we need to take a warrior's path, taking the machete and cutting through the jungle of weeds and find, or create a new path. When the new path is created, it makes it easier for those needing guidance to find their path and maybe even go further.
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