If you begin to understand what you are without trying to change it, then what you are undergoes a transformation.
- Jiddu Krishnamurti
Understanding who I really am was my first step toward self-acceptance, which eventually led to my work in self-kindness and self-compassion.
My healing journey has led me down many paths.
One of the most significant paths was developing and hosting a radio show called Finding Magic in Midlife. My co-host and I sought out and interviewed well known women experts who demonstrated what it is like to find magic in midlife. These authors, scientists, artists, healers, and other talented and accomplished women provided me with so much wisdom. I reveled in sharing what I was learning from them with other midlife women.
I was particularly affected when we interviewed Dr. Elaine Aron, author of The Highly Sensitive Person. I cried my way through her book because I finally understood that there really was nothing wrong with me — I just happened to be one of the 20% of people in the world who are highly sensitive. All my life I had been criticized for being too sensitive.
So just as Soygal Rinpoche’s book had validated my human birthright of Buddha nature, Elaine Aron’s book validated my human birthright as a highly sensitive person. I was finally coming to terms with the origins of my self-critical voice and my sensitive nature. I began developing Self-Kindness with a passion, and this led me to want to share what I was discovering on my journey with others.
THIS STORY OF MY JOURNEY IS DEDICATED TO MY PARENTS
At last my inner werewolf has been put to rest. I no longer have those attacks of unworthiness and self-hatred.
I love looking at myself in the mirror. In fact, I think I like myself even more than my cat likes me.
~ Kat Tansey
My decision to tell secrets my parents held so close for their entire lives has not been an easy one. I loved and adored both my parents. They were intelligent, hardworking, beautiful and loving people. When they retired and moved back to Texas, their neighbors put together a huge scrapbook with pictures and stories about how much my parents meant to everyone in the neighborhood. Everyone loved them.
I wish I had known earlier what had happened to them. I think it might have changed things for me. But it was not the custom in those times to share shameful stories, and I understand this. Perhaps in some small way, my sharing now the stories of what happened in their lives shows us how amazing they really were. They were resilient, hardworking people who found each other and shared a life filled with love, humor, and adventure. They were two of the bravest, most wonderful people I have ever known, and I will love them forever.