Scared to be Spiritual

I always knew that I believed in something much bigger than what I could see. I was six years old, crying on the way to school, inconsolable, my mom asking: what’s wrong? And me telling her that I hated going to school because I felt like I wasn’t really learning anything that mattered.

What mattered to me didn’t seem to matter to anyone else. I never dreamed about college, or marriage, or anything I was supposed to dream about. I didn’t even know what I dreamt about except that I knew, intuitively, that life was meant to be so much bigger, so much more fun, than I had ever imagined — and that there had to be something bigger than us out there.

I was raised by an atheist (my dad would tell me this in a Taco Bell parking lot when I was 10) and a Catholic. My spiritual upbringing was next to none. One summer, I was in a relationship that was going downhill fast. I remember waking up at exactly 4:44AM one morning in their bed, and being drawn outside. I sat on the lawn for an hour. I googled “4:44 meaning.” And down the spiritual rabbit hole I went.

Spirituality was something I kept hidden. It felt like a secret that was too embarrassing to ever share — why would I tell anyone that I believed in angels, in synchronicities, in signs, in a divine path? I would make a point to laugh at it if it was brought up, and slink back to my room to read more about spiritual awakenings in secret.

Over the past six months especially, I’ve dedicated nearly every waking moment to studying spirituality. Taking a spiritual test run, if you will. Something about the idea that there was something bigger than me sent waves of relief down my spine. Almost like I’d come home.

Spirituality, for me, is a daily practice. It’s making gratitude lists and believing in signs. It’s tarot cards and crystals, and it’s also journaling and meditation and a lot of inner work; a lot of understanding how I came to be who I am. It’s a way of feeling fully supported. A way of showing up fully and knowing that the universe truly has my back. A way of working through the setbacks, the heartbreaks, the pain. Whenever I’ve asked for help, the universe has shown up. Maybe not how I intended. But always.

Coming out as someone who’s “into” spirituality has been more nerve wracking than I’d like to admit. I want to think that I don’t care what people think, but it stings, at times, when someone I care about has immediately shut me down or laughed at me.

Sometimes, I question if my connection to this higher power is real at all. But then, something unmistakably divine happens, and I just think — thank you.

Spirituality has helped me face the darkest, scariest parts of myself. It’s helped me to love all that I am, and it impacts how I show up every single day. It’s saved my life, so many times. And I am so grateful. I refuse to be embarrassed by it anymore.

by sydneydennison

fun facts about me:

1. I overshare with a purpose
2. I will never turn down candy
3. I'm still learning what a proper biography looks like

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