Who would you be without your story? How would you show up in the world if you didn’t carry around all of your labels and beliefs about who the world thinks you should be?
Today’s guest, Ruthie Lindsey (who might just be a human superhero), has worked tirelessly on finding that answer.
When Ruthie was 17, she was hit by an ambulance outside of a gas station. She broke her neck, punctured her lungs, and ruptured her spleen. Doctors performed a spinal cord fusion using wire and miraculously, she walked out of the hospital within a month. But a few years later and newly married, even slight movements would send intense pain throughout Ruthie’s entire body.
Ruthie found herself depressed, living in her bed, and addicted to narcotics. Come to find out, the wire holding her neck together was piercing her brain stem, and she would have to prepare for the biggest surgery of her life.
It was during this time that her world seemed to fall apart; her marriage was ending and her father passed away. Ruthie felt utterly broken.
Until one day, her brother said something to her that shifted the way she saw things, and she decided to change her thinking.
What happened next is nothing short of a miracle. The releasing of stories, the coming home to herself, the shift in thinking that took her from feeling defeated and caged, to being free and limitless….this conversation with Ruthie is truly inspiring.
I can’t wait for you to listen, Limitless Lifer. Let’s dive in!
Listen to the episode below:
This episode discusses topics like…
- How her breakdown led to her breakthrough.
- The identity Ruthie found in the story she told about her pain.
- How to begin reframing your thoughts and allowing yourself to heal.
- How the pain gave Ruthie an opportunity to be wildly mindful of the present moment and to let go of the stories she was telling herself.
- Why honoring your body and giving your body what it needs is so important.
- How to be “loving awareness” instead of your thoughts or ego.
- How there is a ripple effect from the choices that you make.
By the way, I created an entirely free, 5-day at-home digital retreat called Limitless Entrepreneur. It’s all about creating a new income stream in less than a week, as well as reprogramming the beliefs that are keeping you from a no-limits business and life. Click the image below to sign up, it’s free!
Links from the episode:
- Ruthie’s Book: There I Am: The Journey of Hopelessness to Healing
- Ruthie’s Website
- Ruthie on Instagram
- Ruthie on Facebook
- Register for the free, at-home Limitless Entrepreneur retreat here!
- Follow me (Melyssa Griffin) on Instagram for honest conversations about business, mindset, and my life.
- Follow the Limitless Life™ Podcast on Instagram for new episode releases and wisdom on how to live a life with no limits.
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I’d love to hear your thoughts on this episode. What kind of limiting stories are you carrying around in your life? What could happen for you if you chose to leave them behind?
Thank you SO much for being here, sweet friend. I’m honored to walk this journey with you. See you in the next episode!
Melyssa: What is up Limitless Lifers? I am so thrilled to bring you today’s episode with Ruthie Lindsay, who I just think is a human superhero, she’s so incredible. Now when Ruthie was 17 she was hit by an ambulance while she was standing outside of a gas station. She broke her neck, punctured her lungs and ruptured her spleen. doctors performed a spinal cord fusion using a wire and miraculously she walked out the hospital within a month. But a few years later and newly married even slight movements of her neck would send intense pain shooting throughout Ruthie’s entire body. So she became depressed, bedridden and addicted to narcotic painkillers. Doctors said that the wire holding her neck together was now piercing her brainstem, which, if you don’t know what that means, it’s not good news. Basically, if she didn’t have another surgery soon, she was going to be paralyzed. So as she prepared for one of the biggest surgeries of her entire life, her marriage began to fall apart. Her father passed away suddenly and Ruthie felt utterly broken inside and out. That is until she decided to shift her thinking. Now Ruthie is a sought after speaker, a podcast host, a social media superstar, and the author of the recent book there I am the journey from hopelessness to healing. She’s also one of the happiest and most loving people I think I’ve ever met. And in this interview, we talk about how Ruthie experienced some of the lowest lows possible and at such a young age and was able to rebuild her life from the ground up with more freedom, joy, courage and self love. This conversation is so inspiring. Not only does Ruthie have just such a beautiful way with words and an incredible story to tell, but I know that you’re going to see yourself in pieces of her story too. So I can’t wait for you to listen. Let’s dive in.
Hey Ruthie, welcome to the show. Thank you so much for having me. I’m super grateful to be here. Likewise, so excited to chat with you. Like I said before the interview, you just show up in the world in such an honest way, which I think allows other people to experience their own honesty within themselves and guide them to their own truth. So just really excited to chat with you and just see what comes up. So
Ruthie: Thank you, what an honor.
Melyssa: Not to start with something super heavy, I wanted to start with (that was a joke), but to start with talking about how you’ve been so open about this traumatic experience that you had starting at age 17, and then the ongoing and painful complications that came from all of it throughout the next few decades. And what really strikes me is that a lot of people would go through something like that, and it would be sort of the evidence they needed to prove that their life is miserable. wasn’t working out or that things weren’t good or that everything was against them. And I feel like you use it to prove the exact opposite. I know you did a lot of work to get to that place, but I just see you now as someone who’s such an enjoyer of the moment and joy of like, every little piece of life and the way that you see the world is such a beautiful perspective. And I just want to know, how did you go from experiencing such profound trauma and pain to experiencing the good and beauty in life in such a visceral and beautiful way?
Ruthie: Well, first off, thank you. That is so kind. I would definitely say it’s been an ongoing journey and it continues to be and a lot of it is choice. You know, I think there’s we have freewill and it’s a decision and life happens and hard things happen and traumatic things happen. But I think for me, you know, I lived in my bed for seven years and debilitating chronic Pain in that whole time I was very part down the lane of like victimhood and feeling very sorry for myself. And, you know, I have so much tenderness and compassion for that girl because that was a part of the journey but because who knows how to handle that sort of level of crazy chronic pain and loss and death and all the things that happen. But you know, about seven and a half years ago, I had a complete full on nervous breakdown, which now I love calling my breakthrough. But my world fell apart like my marriage had ended. My dad had passed away. I’ve been living my bed for seven years, I was in debilitating pain and I wanted to die. Like I wanted my life to be over because that idea felt like such a respite from the hell that I was living in. And I think, you know, it got to a point where it was so bad or it was almost like life or death and My family, I had to move home, I couldn’t take care of myself anymore and my family was gonna send me away to get help. And at the time, I cared so greatly about what people thought of me I was I grew up in the south and everything was like show up be pretty smile. You know, I don’t know that I had a very clear idea of who I was outside of how I presented myself and what other people mirrored back to me of who I was, you know, and I cared so much of what people would think that literally the next day I was on every narcotic under the sun at that time, and I started weaning myself off all the drugs. It’s only like four months, but that time was this real shifting point for me, because I remember to my brother being like, babe, you can lay in your bed and hurt all the time. Or you can get up and be with people and love people and try to serve and hurt. So right now, those are your two options. And I know that sounds like so basic, but for meals like you know, and so I don’t know It started with a motivation of fear of being sent away. But that whatever it took, like me getting off of all of those narcotics I was on like literally the highest level of fentanyl patch, which they give like dying cancer patients, and just a whole bag of all these drugs. And that first off helped my mind come back to myself, because, you know, you’re just in a haze, and a shell of a human on all those drugs. And then I think because whatever I was doing, obviously wasn’t working. And I was miserable. I was so hopeless and so miserable, that I was like, I have to change everything, because this is not working. And so I started learning how to live again. And like I didn’t make a list of like what normal humans do in a day because I didn’t know at that point, I just been eating my feelings and watching TV and taking narcotics, you know, and not living at all. And so it was a real journey and, honestly, it it’s been ongoing as First, like my new drug, we can look for joy look for beauty and everything all around you. Because, you know, I’ve been numbing my pain with all of these drugs and with TV and with food and when you numb the pain, you also numb every good and beautiful thing and you can’t have one without the other. And so as I started, you know, getting off these drugs and like actually feeling the loss and feeling all of this pain that I was going through. I also had this new invitation to also feel the goodness and the beauty and the joy all around me. And at first it was like going through the motions. I didn’t feel anything other than just sadness and depression, but I would like make myself get up and do these things. I could go look for beauty. I like made a list of all the things that I’d love to do before I had chronic pain. And I would make myself go sit out and like watch the sunset or I’d go pick flowers or I like Ruthie one of the things you love or you love people and I really like no one
Yes, you do you love people, and love dancing. I mean, I haven’t done anything that would cause my pain to be worse all that time. So I did nothing because everything made me feel like my pain was worse, you know. And so I was making myself up, get up and do those things. And I remember in that same timeframe, hearing the quote, that the deeper sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain, which is this brawn quote, but I was like, that is going to be my story. And I’m gonna have to let myself feel this pain. This is the only way to actually experience the joy. And, you know, I think at the beginning, I had this real I mean, it was earnest and sweet and from a really sweet place, but I jumped into trying to just help other people in that process. Like I’m going to make this pain purposeful and I’m going to help as many people as I can, you know, like within a year I start sharing my story and which is its own whole long story, but I realized That over time, like in writing my book, how much identity I was also finding in that pain story and needing to be needed and looking for validation outside of me, because writing the book, I mean, it was the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my whole life. Because you honestly gonna have to go back in and like re traumatize yourself and relive all of these traumas and go in so deep, but that became this other just invitation to go inside and not just jump to like try and help other people but like, you have to help yourself and it was so hard and so painful and the most beautiful work I’ve done in most powerful healing work because I I really went inside and I started learning so much about the mind body connection and how our body holds on to trauma from things from like early childhood and can manifest as pain and listen, my neck looks more like a freakin toaster oven and it doesn’t an actual spinal cord. Okay. Have all of my injuries but like, if I can have pain relief, then it’s like, I know that we are created to heal, you know, like my pain have been worse every year for 15 years. And I believe that was it. Like I’m gonna find beauty in the suffering and you know, I had all these like, and I believed it, but now I’m like, Oh, no, no, no, no, you don’t just have to find hope in the suffering. Like we can actually go in and we can heal. We can heal emotionally. We can heal spiritually, we can like, oftentimes really heal physically. And I don’t know, it’s just been. It’s been a real journey. And honestly, to get back to your original question, it’s all been like, ongoing and there are days that I have to like, viscerally choose it and there are days that I don’t and there are days I just feel sad and sorry for myself, you know, and like, that’s human and I have to let myself feel lost and feel trauma and feel pain, but over All like it’s kind of just, you know, being hard and bitter and angry, like that just sucks the life out of me and everyone else around me and I really do believe. And again, it’s a decision to choose but I believe that the universe, God, whatever you call your higher power, like, once good and beautiful things for us and is always doing these things to work in our favor to ultimately bring us home to ourselves to heal. Like I think every painful thing in my life would I wish like someone to break their neck or have a wire or Pierce their brains dumb or lose their husband or lose their dad or you know, all these things like now I don’t wish that on anyone. But I do in the same breath believe that all these traumatic, painful things that happened to us are invitations to like come home and to heal. And to trust that like, what if the universe is like Ultimately just wants to hold us and to love us and in working in our favor and this is for me this is happening for me and not to me and it’s a practice it’s a meditation. It’s a it’s a choice and I get to remind myself of it a lot because I don’t naturally always go there, you know, but it is a decision.
Melyssa: Right? Right. Well, oh my gosh, I had chills like the whole time you were speaking because so much of what you were sharing are so beautiful and wise and something that struck me was that you do feel the the negative quote negative emotions that come up or the difficulties it’s not about like they come up, let me distract myself. They come up, let me know. It’s like they come up. Let me feel them. Let me honor them when they are here. Yes, be a wholehearted human about my pain and my joy.
Ruthie: Yeah, I will. And I think so often, I for so long believed that I was broken. I mean, I grew up in a church that said I was a broken craved rich, you know, and I needed Jesus to not believe that. And to not be that and I believed that. I mean, I used to always say that I was broken, I’d say that my body was broken. I said that my body hated me. Constantly, I would talk about my body as an IT. And I was so disassociated from trauma and removed like I saw it as a totally different entity. And I, because I thought my body hated me. I in turn, hated my body. And that was the source of all this pain. And now Oh, my goodness, I’m like, Oh, this precious, beautiful body that has been loving me and holding me all this time. And she is just calling me out. Like, when she’s in pain when she’s hungry. It’s like, she just wants me to be in tune with her. And she’s like, wanting like of my shoulders hurting or like, oh, instead of getting annoyed, like, shoulder like you’re trying to talk to me and you need something from me and you’re it’s this invitation. You know and it’s just it’s been a real shifting to integrate that new idea that like, we are these wholehearted people and before the ugly things that you know dark things I’m like, oh no no no push those away that’s not okay you know, and but it doesn’t go away I would try to numb it or I would show him that myself for feeling envious or fear, jealousy, you know, all those things I thought were dark and bad and or even my sexuality that was looked on is really bad where I grew up and learning how to and it’s again, I still have some of these limiting stories that I’m constantly getting to unlearn and speak love over because we all have those stories most come from a lot come from early childhood. They come from family and culture and the church and society and the patriarchy like there’s all these negative stories that are constantly going in and instead of shaming myself now I’ve started learning more and like, really, I don’t know, I love thinking of it as like a dance with these like Shadow parts. And I think unless we have these conversations and like, now if I see myself like this isolation this quarantine is brought up a lot of stuff for me. I’ve seen old things. I’m like, wait a minute, I don’t even know that we don’t want that anymore. Or what’s happening is will trigger it and it’s bringing up old traumas, you know? And now like I saw myself, even like a week ago, feeling really envious. I was like, Hello, where? Hi, sister. You know, at first I was like, ooh, and then I ended up I see it as like a dance like, Hi, jealousy. I see you. And you’re coming from a really old old place. We’ve done this dance before. Now instead of trying to push you away, let’s like have a conversation. And, you know, I’m not going to try to push you down. Let’s like talk, and let’s let love enter into this conversation with you and remind you that we there is enough for all of us. something beautiful and amazing happens for one of your people, this is a blessing for everyone. There is enough and so much goodness for everyone. And I don’t know like seeing it that way. Because I think if we try to deny the shadow parts of ourselves, we’re not actually like you said living as these wholehearted humans, we only want to show up as the bright shiny, like that’s not real. That’s not real for any human on planet Earth. Because like, we’re human, and we have a lot of shadow and Shadow Work. I feel like that’s light work is incredible, but like we need to work on our shadows and Like to be these wholehearted beings we were created for, you know, it’s again, it’s just it’s an invitation and I have to work to not shame myself, you know? Because that’s like that makes you just think about yourself and go on this whole other. Like, it’s just it doesn’t serve anyone or anything, you know. So I’ve just been trying to be really kind and really gentle and really loving with myself and I do a lot of little Ruthie work. I’m like, I would never talk to this little girl. The way that I talked to myself sometimes or the way I talk about my body would never ever do that. Or I’ve never talked to my nieces. The way that I’ll hear myself talk to myself at times, and I don’t need to shame myself for it, but I get to recognize it and be aware of like, Oh, hi, or even. I know where that voice is coming from, you know, and like, I think there’s just we’re so deserving of Like loving, gentle work, you know, because it’s, we all experience the darkness. You know, that’s just
Melyssa: right. Right. Something that you’ve said about your body before is that physical pain became an entry point to being present. Yeah, I love that because it’s such a reframe, first of all on physical pain, but it’s like, what you were experiencing with your body was just an opportunity to be wildly mindful of the present moment. Yeah, that’s so powerful.
Ruthie: I love what you said. Thank you for reminding me of that because I actually today I do somatic therapy with my counselor. Because of so much trauma, it’s been hard for me to like be in my body, you know, I can disassociate so quickly and so easily and not be in the present. And so, a lot of my work has been coming back into my body and today I was talking about like, my right hip was hurting. In my right hand, and she was like, Well, why don’t you put your hand because oftentimes, I’ll put my hand on my heart a lot and talk about please just like, why don’t you put that same hand on your head and see what you feel and see what your hand feels. And she like, was kind of just guiding me and I’d say what I felt and then all of a sudden, I got so emotional. I got so emotional. And I was like, I feel like my hands telling me, thank you for spending time with me. Thank you so much. I missed you. And I know that sounds so weird. It’s so weird, but it felt so real and so sweet. Like our bodies. For every one message our brain has for our bodies. Our body has 10 more messages for our brain. But we’re so disconnected and we’re living in the future or we’re, you know, we’re future tripping or we’re feeling shame about things in the past or we’re thinking about this upcoming thing or I’m watching TV or, you know, it’s just so easy to believe Not just be right here and in this present moment, and being connected, and that’s all we have. That’s all we ever, ever have. So like sitting in front of you, right in this moment is the most important place I could ever be. Because it’s where I am and what a gift, you know, it’s such a gift. And if I reframe it and think about it in that way, it’s just, you know, I don’t know, it’s just really, really, really precious. Because right now, is all we ever have. You know, and the rest is like, not real. It’s literally not.
Melyssa: Yeah, it’s literally not real. Yeah. And it’s so fascinating how we can live our whole lives if we’re not aware of it in what happened in the past or what we’re worried about will happen in the future, what we want to create in the future when our life is literally just right now.
Ruthie: Yeah. In our projections, and in even our When we’re living in the past so often, we are telling ourselves stories. We made up stories of how like if you hear three people tell the exact same story of the exact same situation scenario, or three kids and under the same roof with the same parents, they will have completely different experiences. And I thought about that done and writing my book, because of the people in it. I’m like, this might not even be they might be like, what life was she live in? You know, like my expensive I mean, because we had two very different experiences of the same exact thing. And we’re all seeing the world which are we’re always says, we see the world as we are not as it is. So we have all these stories, right? And projections and through the lens, oftentimes of our pain and our loss and our hurt. And it’s like, you know, you can make up This whole story about what someone’s doing to you right now and like they’re not even think about you, Ruthie, get over yourself. You know, it’s just so and that’s always when I’m not in the present moment,
Melyssa: Right? Yeah. And what I want to actually touch on too is something you said a few minutes ago about your body and you were talking about how it’s helping you to understand more of your sexuality and maybe even feel more connected to that.
Melyssa: I’d love to hear more about that because that’s something that I’ve been personally feeling within myself to almost this tremendous shame around being sexy or being Yeah, just being in a female body. I guess. I’d love to hear what that looks like for you a tree archy
Ruthie: I feel like my work on this earth is so much more of an unlearning and remembering than anything because we come into this world world as a whole, right? Just deserving whole, loved worthy humans and life happens and these fucked up things happen and trauma happens and oftentimes we aren’t nurtured and attuned to, as, you know, in our pre verbal years the way our little souls need and long for. And so these stories happen and where I like the church that I was a part of in teenagers and online through my 20s would say like, the flesh is sinful above all else. And we were taught like, how to dress and not to dress for men, because, you know, they’re so lustful, and we could make them stumble and all these just crazy stories. I mean, I married my first boyfriend 10 months after I met him because we felt guilty about having sex. I mean, why precious little idiots, like
So earnest, you know, like, and I don’t even have hard feelings for the church anymore. I did. But now I’m like they were trying to protect me, that was their semblance of trying to give some sense of control for protection. You know, and I don’t think it came from an ugly place. I think it came from a place of trying to be loving, and not realizing that they were putting us in these boxes, you know, and so my work of and I’m on the journey, listen, it’s not like I think I’ll be on this journey until I am on the other end, you know, and in between again, but I’m learning these stories about my body being something that I should be ashamed of, or that it needs to look a certain way. I mean, I have to like, lovingly correct myself very often of the words that I’ll say about my body, because of what culture and what has been told to me of the way I should look and the way I should, the size, I should be in all these. just crazy crazy stories to make ourselves be acceptable and desirable, but not too desirable. Because that’s not appropriate. It’s just, it’s all bullshit. And it’s all just stories. It’s just stories and they don’t have to be our stories. And that’s what’s so beautiful about doing this like, really healing work again that we’re so deserving of it because when you do it, you get to remember what’s so right with you, and not what’s wrong with you. We were never broken down broken, fucked up, things happen. 100% if you’re on planet earth 100% that’s the human story. That’s what helps us evolve into more wholehearted humans like I don’t know why the universe set it up that way, but that’s just the process of being human. But, but I know that if I hadn’t gone through all those things, I would have just lived a denial surfacey Just a very self absorbed life and I would have never gone deeper if my life hadn’t turned upside down. I would have never gone in and realize that this beautiful, beautiful body is so deserving of so much love and so much affection and so much attention. And I get to do that for myself. That’s what’s also so beautiful. I don’t have to depend on another human to give me that when that’s an unusual scenario when someone is respectful and loving and it’s reciprocal amazing. It’s the best ever but my friend, Dr. Hilary McBride, because I’m so affectionate and right now is hard when we can’t touch and like that’s been really difficult. But what she taught me is our bodies don’t know the difference in our hands and someone else’s. We can go in and I will literally hold myself and hug myself in Touch. Touch my face. So gently and say the most loving kindness most beautiful things, because our bodies hear us. They hear us if we’re talking shit about them, and they hear us when we’re speaking, so loving, and we’re so deserving of that. So now, like I, I am a sexual human I, like I had this whole meditation one day where I was like, What if I treated my body, if I talked to my body as though my body or my lover or my partner, like, how I would want to speak to her how I would want to listen, listen, and listen, how I would want to be touching her, how I would want to be touched, how I would feed her, how I would want to spend time with her and take her on, you know, go on walks in nature alone and be with Mother Earth and spend time in meditation with her and do all these things that like I would want to do with a lover make love to her. Like that’s so peaceful. For I can do that for myself and my body is so deserving of that and so worthy of that, and there’s nothing to feel shame. That’s like, it’s opposite. It’s the most precious loving thing. And what’s so fucking cool about it is the more I do this work, it’s not selfish. It’s so affirming and the more I do it, the more I’m actually able to step out of my front door and be a mirror of that. The more I liberate myself, the more people around me can liberate them. More self love I give to myself, the more I can, like, be a mirror of that self love. That is everyone’s this divinity isn’t everyone This love is healing, this wholeness, it’s yours. You don’t need me, and I can’t fix you and you can’t fix me but we get to be mirrors to each other and lift each other up and be reminders of the goodness that we see in each other and That’s what so like again the way I was brought up in so many of us in church culture and just I mean culture in general like women need to be selfless forget yourself
What the actual?! How messed up? Mmm no no no I don’t think I need to my work is to remember me I literally have written on my our mutual friend Christine wrote it out for me but it says I remember me in French and I have it right by my front door. So when I walk out like not forget me remember, remember who you are. Remember the Divinity inside of you remember your inherent worth and goodness and just deserve it this because that’s everyone’s and the more I do that the more I treat people with that same respect and know that they are that valuable. They are that worthy. If we did this work, there wouldn’t be a class breakdown. There will be, you know, we treated everyone that they were that worthy, not like, based on what they can offer us or the color of their skin or their money or their whatever the hell we sow in our city, you know, and are often sick little brains believe. You know, none of it matters. Everyone worthy. And listen, I’m talking to myself, this is about me pointing fingers at anyone but me, this is my work that I get to like, do to remember because I get so caught up in the other, you know, and I get caught up in what culture says and what society has told me and what the patriarchy has told me and I’ll get confused and think that’s that’s what’s real. That’s why not forget me. Remember me, that’s the truth. And again, the more you do this, where it’s like, you get to remember what’s so right with you. And I just, I wish I could like just Through as to whoever is listening and like look them in the eye and be like you are so deserving. You are so worthy. You are whole and you’re so beautiful. Exactly as you are right in this moment, not 10 pounds less down the road, not 20 years earlier, when you were younger, like exactly as you are, you’re so deserving, and so worthy and so needed, like we need you. And you do this work you get to show up in the world as a whole hearted human being is that,
Melyssa: I just love what you’re saying about like, remembering yourself, remember me. And what that means is like releasing a lot of the things that caused you to forget you. And for me this word limitless like this podcast is all about that because it’s like, there have been so many boxes we’ve been shoved in and squished in. And now we’re like these people who are in these really tiny boxes, trying to make sense of who we are in the lives we’ve created. And we’re just forgetting ourselves or forgetting the limitlessness of who we can be if we just remember. Yeah, it’s creating, it’s remembering. It’s always there.
Ruthie: It’s always there. It’s a remembering, it’s an unlearning and remembering. So cool. Last weekend, Christine and I went out to the woods six feet apart, and we’re like, we’re gonna go spend an the afternoon in the woods, and we are going to go walk in nature and connect with Mother Earth because this shit is hard.
And we are so fortunate, I mean, the people that like can’t leave their apartments and be in nature, my heart goes out to them so deeply because, and I know that we have that serene place within us that being able to connect with Mother Earth has been such medicine for me. And anyway, I was telling her, we’re like meditating. And I was just telling her like, you know, we had kind of what I was saying earlier, I was like, we have so many stories. Yes, so many stories. And I feel like that’s my work is to let those go. I can like someone names a person and even if it’s like, all positive, you know, I can say who I am through my lens, who they are. And I had these stories about them. And I was like, you know, my books coming out on Tuesday on the 21st. And I was like, I just, I think I’m supposed to just let it all go. Because like, what’s even real, like, even when I finished the book a year ago, I mean, my looks so different from a year ago. There were things that I didn’t know. There are things that I have learned since then. But it was my truth when I wrote that book, right? It’s all stories. And anyway, I was just kind of like going on about that. And I was like, the way that I define myself it’s all a story. That’s not who I am. And I’ve been like, Look, I love ROM das and his whole thing about being like we are all we are is just loving awareness. I’m not, I’m not a speaker. I’m not a podcast host. I’m not an author. I’m not a six foot tall girl. Like, I have all these stories. I’m not this, you know, extroverted introverted. ENFP like enneagram seven, all these stories, we love to label ourselves and put ourselves in these boxes of who we are. I was like, No, all I am is loving awareness. That’s who my soul is. That’s who my soul has always been. is loving awareness. And I’m not kidding, I swear you. I got the chills all over my body. I’m not maybe 1015 minutes later. I Get a text from my girlfriend and she goes I’d send her a copy of my book. And she goes Ruthie I’m so sad and I’m so sorry my mailman left your book outside and for like the first time ever, it’s raining in LA and all of the pages got washed away. You can’t do any of it. And I really started out like the terius smile just beam kale onto my face and I was like be please send me a photo. So that could not be more perfect, coolest thing I’ve ever heard because it’s all a story none of it’s actually like it’s all this our projections right? And literally she sends me a photo of my author page and it’s my picture and you can barely see it you would never knows me. You can basically see about the author and then nothing, no other words. They’re all washed away. And I was like, I need to frame this because that is the truth like how anyone who receives this book has Nothing to do with me. It has nothing to do with me. It’s through their own lens. It’s none of my business if they think it’s the best thing ever. It’s not my freakin business. If they read it and think it’s the worst, that’s amazing. It’s none of my business. You know, like, we are, we are love, we are divinity, we are home, we are worthy. That’s who we are. We’re not these other stories that we make up. And does it mean? Like, I think everything is a both and doesn’t mean like, throw everything away. And you’re nobody, no, it’s, but it’s like to remember to hold space for that. And to hold it all so loosely. You know, it’s just like this precious, because like, my ego wants to say that my identity is in, you know, these things that I do. My worth is in these things that I do and how I show up in the world. And my ego wants to say that what other people’s worth is too. And I’m like, What bullshit What a story Oh my god, you know, it was actually so cool. I did this thing, my friend owns this place called on site. And it’s like an emotional wellness place. And when you go, you give up your phone and you’re not allowed to tell anyone what you do for a living. And that began my journey of realizing how much identity and worth I found in what I did. Because people would say, what do you do? I’m a speaker, what do you speak about? I share my story, what’s your story, and I gave him this five minute overview of being the only human in the world that’s ever had a wire in their brainstem and how I shouldn’t be alive. And I’m the only you know, I have all this criteria of why I’m really special and you should want to know me. You know, and I couldn’t tell anyone. And it was like an identity crisis. I’m like, Do I have anything interesting to offer? anyone think I doesn’t matter like, Who am I? And I knew that I found out my identity and my pain story when I lived in my bed because that’s all I thought about and that’s all I taught. People, we teach people how to see us. So when anyone would see me, they’d be like, how are you? Hey, and they felt really sorry for me. And I found so much comfort and that sympathy because in my sweet little sick brain, it justified me living in my bed and not showing up as a partner and not working and not showing up as a friend or an aunt or a sister or daughter, but I didn’t know that I was still finding all my identity in that pain story after when I had like, changed my life. And I was eating and doing all these things to like, hopefully help other people. You know what I mean? Like, wow, it was a beautiful kick in the ass Rude Awakening that knocked me on my butt. And I was like, So who am I? Who am I? If I’m not what the world says I am if I’m not these things that I do, and like Myles and I always talk about our podcast like, we call ourselves human beings that we live like human doings, but we are beings And to be, you have to be present. And you have to be here. And you have to be in the moment. And I just I don’t know, I feel like I just went off on a real tangent I do that,
Melyssa: Oh, I loved it.
Ruthie: But it’s so precious. I don’t know. It’s like, when I remember that for myself, I remember it for the people around me. And I treat them differently. And I walk in the world differently. And it’s just, it’s so easy to get caught up in the bullshit and the stories and influence and none of it matters. And just, I don’t know, I want to, I want to constantly come back to remembering that every day, and that’s how I want to dance to the world. That’s how I want to show up in the world. I say at the end of my book, I’m like, Listen, when you finish this and you close the last page, and you turn off your light, or you get off your bus stop or you finish your cup of coffe No one’s doing all those things but this is what I find if you’re still in your house like the rest of the fucking world you forget my name. And I hope you forget this story. This This is for you. You don’t need me. This love is yours This is yours this joy is yours this healing is yours. All of it’s for you. I’m gonna moonwalk the fuck out of here becausee you don’t need me it’s already inside of you. And I my hope is this book is just a flashlight to beam inside of humans what’s already there? Because that’s what it’s been for me, you know, and it’s not mine anymore at all is yours, you know and that, that now I’ll get to remind my ego that a good bit, I’m sure That’s what my whole heart and soul knows. That’s what my higher consciousness knows to be true. And Matt, but what an honor, like, I kind of makes me want to cry, like what a privilege, you know, and like, that anyone would even let me into their world to shine that light. That’s theirs. Like, it feels like such a privilege and such an honor. I’m so grateful. And even if it’s like 10 people, what an honor.
Melyssa: It’s like passing the torch, you are sharing the depths of you, and you’re passing it to other people, so they get to see the depths of them. And it’s not about you. And it’s not even about the stories it’s about. It’s about just the ripple effect. It feels like the choice to I know I feel like choice and choosing has been a theme of this conversation of like, your life is a series of choices you get to make about how you feel And what you do and who you are? Yeah. Are you choosing the one where you’re remembering you? are you choosing the things where you’re forgetting you? Yeah.
Ruthie: That’s our work, right? Yeah. That’s our word.
Melyssa: Yeah, it really is. And I appreciate you talking to you about the Onsite workshop you went to and how it was confronting them. Who am I, if I don’t get to tell that five minute spiel about all the reasons why I’m special, I’ve experienced that exact same thing that’s been one of my life stories to have, who am I without achieving things Who am I without being a leader or doing things and I had a similar confrontation with myself about it where I really got to a point of burnout and had to just be I couldn’t do anymore. And it was the scariest and most profound experience of my life to just witness fully how worthy I am just for existing for not creating or doing but just for being. Yes.
Ruthie: So profound, so beautiful. That’s the work and I think the burnouts and the breakdowns and the hitting of the walls, because we’re all going to have it. If you’re on Mars, enough, you will experience it. And they all are these beautiful invitations and opportunities for breakthroughs. We have free will, though, and you don’t have to choose it. You can just keep pushing through and you’ll hit a bigger wall. And like that’s why the universe is so loving and so good to us. Because I avoided and did I mean, listen, I told you, I lived in my bed seven years, I had a lot to offer those seven years, full on nervous breakdown, for me to finally because the universe God wouldn’t give up on me, like would not give up on me. And so finally I chose something different. And those breakdowns like as awful and painful and as traumatic as they are. They are our invitations. They are gifts. They are our privilege Because they are the only I mean, if life it just looks great and everything’s going, hunky dory, you’re never going to change and go deeper and delve deeper and become the wholehearted human that you’re on this planet to be. Period. You just won’t. That’s how it works. It’s hard.
Melyssa: It’s so cool. I love that. Yeah. We you think our growth in our personal development is like reading a fun book or going to a workshop or you meet really interesting people and then in reality, it’s like, going through the most difficult traumatic experience of our lives and we’re like, Okay, this is actually
Ruthie: this is the real work. That’s where the roots grow. That is where the depth comes. That’s where consciousness comes. You can awaken and happy go lucky. Everything’s great life. You will not a weekend. That is not how it works. And it’s hard. But again, you know, we have free will, some people will choose like there are people. And this is in any sense of judgment. It’s just, you know, you know, those people that are stuck, and they don’t believe that they’re strong enough to like, stop the drugs or stop drinking or stop or whatever it is, it’s their way of numbing because we all have it. I have so many buttons that I love to push to numb to get up this day. It’s just we all do it. But again, like you said, the choice thing like I’m we’re so much stronger and so much more resilient. If you had a told me at 17 years old, you know, what was coming and what I would move through and overcome. And I would have said, just take me now my journey for how many years I mean, but here’s what’s also weird I’m about to speak out of both sides of my mouth because in the same I actually this is really woowoo but I do believe in past lives and I believe that we choose these. Like I read this Yeah, journey of souls changed my life in a way this book rocked my world and three different to being strangers three different people told me to read it within like a six month period I’m like what is this ugly ass cover book that people keep? Finally I read it in people during you know when they are in hypnotism people were tapping into past lives or the life between lives. Everyone would say the same thing about the life between lives. Everyone in hypnotism says the same freaking thing. And anyway, of course, I’ve since had to do it because I have to learn other things. But what I came to and listen, I’m so open to being so wrong about everything that is like freedom very, like if I’m so completely wrong, amazing, who cares? But this felt so loving to me when I read that and I was like, wow, I felt so Dear to my precious little soul When I heard like when I heard of the idea that we choose our lives it’s what our souls need for growth and expansion in this life and with our guides and with our angels and with our soul family we come and we do these lives and we choose our parents and we choose but like we can we still have free will so also young so you just keep coming back till you learn the lessons if you you know freewill. If you don’t choose to learn it, you get to come back and I’m like, Oh, my God, that my sweet little soul trusted myself enough to come and to live through what I’ve lived through, so that then I could have the invitation to come home to myself, so that then I get to be a mirror of what is for others. Like, that is the most beautiful, I will just I felt so weird and proud of my sweet little soul. I’m like, You’re so brave. You were so strong and you’re so resilient. And I am so honored like that you trusted us to do this, you know? And again if I’m wrong, who cares? It doesn’t matter.
Melyssa: Right? Think about all the spiritual woowoo stuff it’s like helps me heal.
Ruthie: It helped me evolve into a more hearted human and have more tenderness and compassion and love for myself. What a gift what a freakin and like honestly, I was told over and over because my wreck was so bad I broke the top two vertebrae in my neck and my friend that was in the car with me. He had always said you were hanging over the steering wheel not making a sound for like three to five minutes and the doctors after they got there. They’re like, you know, you had a three to 5% chance of living like it’s a miracle that you’re alive. And Brian, I was like, I don’t I telling you you are not there. And actually Molly it really really I’ve had several different like astrologers and intuitive in this in that say you know that you’ve done Before, right not knowing anything about me or my story, and I’m like, yeah, I’m pretty sure I did. And I think that I chose to combat like I think I was shown. And what’s even weirder is I’ve had an astrologer do my charts before. And she was telling me a lot about my birthday. And I was like, No, I’ll have that just doesn’t fit anymore. And then she did a chart for the day of my wreck, which was the day my dad, it was my dad’s birthday. So we have the same birthday now. She yesterday was the anniversary of his death. There were so much overlap. Like I had so many of the personality traits of a Scorpio. I don’t again, could be so wrong, so open to that. Who cares? How cool is it though? Like it’s beautiful. Oh, beautiful.
Melyssa: I think it’s just an opportunity to see the synchronistic ways of universe and it doesn’t have to mean anything or it just
Ruthie: you want to hold on to it tightly
Melyssa: Yeah, and I love that. Thank you. First of all, I love what you’re saying about past lives and just how much you honor your soul for being willing to go on that journey with you. That is beautiful. And I think too, sometimes about my next life and I think about what do I get to do in this life, to make it a little more loving for that next person that I become or that next thing I become? What can I do now so that they don’t have to experience it. And if it felt like this friend, this like, sister that I will meet that I am and then I could just make her life a little bit more tender, more gentle, more loving. I’m doing the work now. So I love thinking about that too.
Ruthie: Yeah. And I think also we get to also heal past lives.
I really believe the more work that we do, and the more awakening and enlightenment that we do, we can heal generational pain from like, in this time, like my mom from this life. And you know, and I think we can do healing and because I think I came in with a lot of pain from past lives and the ones that I connected with were trauma like you would I mean, I Trail of Tears just so much pain, so much loss so much hurt. And I don’t know. I mean, I just I love the idea of like us doing this work. Like I’ve heard you can heal seven generations back and seven generations forward. Like, I mean, how beautiful. How beautiful. I love it so much. Right, right. And even
Melyssa: thinking about like our ancestors and our lineage and how much of our pain and trauma is just inherited through our ancestral line and how much of that we get to heal we can be the pattern interrupt that. No more. Yep. And get to make a change. Yep. Or my family’s entire line. I think that’s so beautiful. Right.
Ruthie: I’ve done a lot of work around My dad and I like, I know that I’ve done healing that has helped bring healing for him. And he’s not here anymore. But I believe that like I really, it just feels so loving and so precious. And again, it feels like a privilege. You know, you’re like, you can’t change something until you’re aware. So like, how beautiful
Melyssa: Yes, I really I want to call it that line. That’s so beautiful. You can’t change something until you’re aware of it. So true. Yeah. I feel like I could just talk to you all day. You just have such beautiful heart and soul and so much wisdom to share and just love we didn’t have time to get to it. But I just love the way that you love people to and your love for yourself and honoring of of you, just like you were saying earlier becomes this overflow and I see it and how you honor and champion and cherish other people. So thank you for bringing a piece of you and your wisdom to this conversation. And I just have one more question that I love to ask them. My guests and because the podcast is called limitless life™, I’d love to know what is one piece of advice you’d give our listeners about how to live a life with Nolan. Hmm.
Ruthie: I mean, I feel like I’m just gonna sound like a broken record about this whole conversation. But the only way to live a limitless life™ is to do the loving work of coming home and remembering yourself. Because when you have these stories of who you are about your what you do, you’re limiting everything because that’s, that’s putting a box of who you are. You know, and you’re saying, I am a mother, I am a teacher. I am a light that’s limiting yourself instead of remembering that you are awareness you are loved. You are light, your wholeness You are worthy, deserving and goodness, because you’re born you are inherently all of those things for me That’s my journey of not putting myself in a box is just unlearning those other stories and remembering that
Melyssa: Hmm. And it’s so gorgeous and something that speaks to me about that too. It’s like even the stories and labels that we think are serving us that we think are cool, positive part of our identity. It’s like, you’re not that either you are loving awareness, so much expansive possible and you could be in this entire world.
Ruthie: In the most loving way you can show up because think about if you’re standing in front of another human soul, and you are lovingly aware of them. And you’re just unless we’re lovingly aware, we can’t see someone we can’t hear someone we can’t show up for someone, but like to lovingly be aware of a soul in front of you, like I know when I feel that from another person, when someone sees me and just is aware loves me. It, it is like, I mean, I don’t think there’s a greater gift of what we can give to the world. So keep that to ourselves. And you get to show up and give that to those around you like that. That is like that’s what could change the world, right? Yes. I’m 100%
Melyssa: Well, I just appreciate you so much. Where can people go to learn more about you and your amazing book?
Ruthie: Yes. Well, first off, I want to tell you that I feel very seen by you. And you made me feel so cared for and so heard and so loved and so I am so honored that I get to fill your loving awareness because it is so beautiful and I feel very cared for. And so my book comes out on April 21, and it is called There I Am: The journey from hopelessness to healing. And we’re going to be doing a virtual book tour next week on Tuesday, Thursday. Saturday with Connie Britton, Oregon Harper Nichols and Mari Andrew. And then my best friend Jedediah Jenkins and I are going to do a virtual book club of my book. And that’ll start on May May, oh gosh, I’m really bad at whatever two weeks after the book comes out, whatever that data was taught, I think there’s some good so all of that is on my website, you can just go to www.ruthielindsey.com and there’s links for everything. And then on Instagram, I’m just at @ruthielindsesy. But yeah, that’s where most of the information is you can sign up for the book tour and book club on my website. There’s also links to all of that on my Instagram too. So yeah, thank you. Thank you so much.