One of the things I’ve most enjoyed about entering my 30s has been the deepening of both integrity and intimacy.
Across that threshold into this current decade I’ve found a more steadfast commitment to returning to and upholding my connection to truth. It has all become a simpler equation, ask good questions to the trusted and quiet spaces within myself and listen openly for the response. Then comes the translation of this inner communion into radical honesty with self and others. While integrity within roles, responsibilities and towards others has been a strongly held value in my life for some time, it has been integrity in relating to myself that has undergone the most transformation. A distinct sense of personal authority and responsibility for self-honouring has taken root and been the catalyst for much of this sense of devotion to preserving and nurturing integrity in my way of being. Across that threshold I have found the self-offered permission to articulate my experience and to create and maintain wholesome boundaries arises more freely and with more certainty. Deeper ownership of my worth allows a cultivation of boundaries that are more gracefully applied, where I am able to hold the tender space for myself while lovingly releasing another. Boundaries that recognize and respond compassionately to others’ trauma and wounds while still being steadfast within myself. Boundaries that are not reactionary or weaponized against something or someone but are responsive and adaptable. Boundaries that enable me to offer blessing to another or to a situation or experience while honouring the need for distance or disconnection.
In what might appear as contrast, but is in fact in conjunction, the structure created by integrity breeds more intimacy. My capacity, and the capacity of those I am relating to has only deepened in the crossing of this threshold. With more years and accumulated experience of this embodied life, there is natural dissolution of layers between self and others when we allow it to unfold. This feels like a softening of armour with our people that invites more closeness and holds better space for vulnerability and the kind of transformation that only relationship to others can catalyze. The borders between self and other become more permeable and through the safety of good and loving integrity in relationship, we get the chance to thrive inside of the container it creates. It seems worthwhile to specify that this is in no way limited to romantic partnership, within all forms of relationship. This expanding intimacy has been within myself, between myself and others, as well as myself and my environment. My illusion of separation has yielded more to a knowing of interconnection. Being in space with other humans I feel more energetically intertwined. In subtle and overt ways I feel more wholly available to the people I spend my time with and to the environments and systems I exist within. That shift has made us all better at holding each other and allowing each other in. It also comes back full circle to the importance of that integrity to create the container for that intimacy to evolve in ways that are safe, supportive and coherently truthful on all sides.
As with all things, this coexistence and expansion of integrity and intimacy does not happen entirely on its own. All this is aided by contemplation, self-observation and practices that invoke this kind of growth and allow us to feel steady navigating the vulnerability and courage it takes to build both integrity and intimacy. However, there are certain thresholds or cycles of time in our lives that make these kinds of openings particularly available and possible for all of us. For me this juncture of time has been exactly that a marriage of deliberate and intentional rewiring and the natural progression and arc of the soul evolving in human form.