Alice, team member of A Whole New High

(inspired by Kambo)

All of her life she had been trying to run away from pain.

She went from place to place, traveled around the world to find her joy. But like a loyal companion the pain followed her wherever she went. She entered relationships and friendships hoping that this time it would be better: More loving, less painful. But her hope was rarely fulfilled.

Why was the pain always by her side?

For as long as she can remember each decision she made was always followed by hurt. “Choices are painful” was the lesson she learned as a little girl. A lesson she swallowed so deeply into her subconscious mind that she became unaware of it. A lesson that then began to shape her reality.

When she became an adult she was unable to commit to a choice. Deep down she still believed that every choice would bring her pain, every commitment would take away her freedom.

So she stayed stuck in an in-between state: never fully saying yes, never fully saying no – leaving all options open.

Sometimes she tried to make short-term decisions. She chose boyfriends and places to live. But her mind was so convinced that choices bring pain that this illusion would shape shift her reality. With every decision she took, the pain followed her. She resisted it – it became stronger and stronger until she escaped into a short lived freedom.

But the more she resisted choices, the more life presented her with opportunities to choose. And so she tried again.

Choosing – Suffering – Escape was the pattern her unconscious settled for. When all she ever wanted was freedom.

But something was missing in her freedom.

Until finally one day she realized what had been missing all along: She had forgotten to include her pain in her freedom.

She had made up in her mind that pain and freedom were opposites when really they didn’t have to be.

She understood that in order to be free, she must welcome the pain into her soul, into her being.

So for the first time in her life she desired to make a commitment. And so she chose to feel her pain.

She participated in a Kambo ceremony knowing that this traditional South American medicine consisting of frog poison would make her feel highly uncomfortable and bring up the deep rooted pain from her past that she had tried to ignore for so many years.

When the shaman applied the poison on her body, she closed her eyes and said to herself: “I am choosing this pain.”

Her body got extremely hot. Her head and ears started to beat intensely while her face and throat started to swell up.

The frog poison made her heart race, her body shake. “I am choosing this pain”, she repeated.

She vomited violently. And she laughed. Because for the first time in her life the pain did not feel painful.

When she did not resist the downward spiral, she would quickly find herself back in the beautiful flow of love and creation.

She smiled when she understood that it was never the pain that had made her suffer. The root cause of her suffering was the belief that she had no choice but to be stuck in pain. For so many years this belief had made her feel powerless.

Now that she chose to feel the pain, she felt powerful instead.

Now that she was with her pain, she did not need to be scared of it anymore. She did not need to run away any longer. She felt complete.

She befriended her pain and felt stronger than ever before.

She befriended her pain and lost her fear of commitment.

By choosing pain, she found her freedom.

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