This is the first line of a song that I have been listening to over and over today. It’s called ‘Exhale’ by Plumb. Music has always been hugely impactful in my life. It is how God speaks to me more often than not. It is how I have connected to my emotions. It is how I process through the things I experience and learn. Over the last three or four months, I have experienced and learned so much. Some of the lessons may seem small to most, but they have completely changed my life – and honestly, saved it.
As I have been processing my experiences over the last few months, one of the things I realized is that what we inhale greatly impacts what we exhale. If we inhale toxins, we will have a very difficult time exhaling freedom, love, or joy. Throughout my life, I have constantly inhaled judgment, rejection, abandonment, and fear. With each breath, I began to build a wall. My childhood provided a strong foundation, and the wall just grew and grew as I continued to breathe in toxins for almost 40 years.
15 years ago, I met the first person who did not exhale toxins in my life. She was the exception to the rule. When she said she loved me, I actually believed it. I began to question the voices that kept saying I wasn’t worth it – that there was something wrong with me. She continued to love me no matter what, but I was still inhaling so many toxins.
3 years ago, I met someone else who exhaled love into my life. She stood by me as I began my journey of ‘detoxing’ those negative voices. She encouraged me to be myself and did not turn away or judge when I could barely keep my head above water.
When I felt my life spiraling, and I questioned the point of it all, it was the love and support of these two that kept me going. If they saw something worth caring about, it was logical that I needed to find that within myself.
The last few months have been about ‘detoxing’. I have been able to start exhaling those toxins from my life…the fear, the anxiety, the worthlessness. And the reason I’ve been able to do that is because I have found a group of people who have exhaled love and grace into my life. Not since dance was my entire world have I ever felt like I belonged or was accepted the way I have been the last few months. I have not inhaled even a whiff of judgment or rejection, and that has allowed me to begin to step into the person God created me to be. I am so grateful for my heartchange family.
This is the chorus of ‘Exhale’:
Just let go
Let His love wrap around you
And hold you close
Get lost in the surrender
Breathe it in until your heart breaks
These people have (and continue to) just let go and let His love wrap around them. And when they exhale, it is a beautiful breath of only love and grace.
For those of you who are constantly inhaling toxins, I pray that you find a community who begins to exhale God’s breath of life. For those who have let go and inhale God’s love, I pray that you continue to exhale into the lives of others. You may never know the lives it will save.