Alliance Profile – Mercedes De La Cruz
Mercedes De La Cruz
What life events that you’ve experienced (could be minor, could be major), physical traumas, or genetic predispositions do you believe you went through, that may have had any type of impact on your ability to feel the healthiest you can feel from a mental health standpoint?
First of all…Don’t get me wrong, I’ve had a beautiful life and a wonderful childhood in many ways, but this is not about that. This is going to be about the beliefs that I held that I now see contributed to the upsets in my world. There have been many experiences in my life that have influenced who I am today, however, I believe that it all stems from a belief that I am responsible for the emotions of others. From that one belief, a snowball of other limiting beliefs accumulated as well and lead to sadness in my world.
-There is something wrong with me
-No matter what I do, I can’t do anything right
-I am not lovable
-I am bad and guilty and deserve punishment
-I am worthless
When I was just a baby my mom decided that my biological father was not the man that she wanted to be with to raise me. She thought that it would be best if she left him, move forward with her life, and find a more suitable partner. When I was six months old my mother went on to find an absolutely wonderful man who has been nothing but a fantastic father to me ever since. When I was 3 years old my natural father vanished from my life not giving us a reason. That was the last I saw him. Now, even though I had a loving father in my life, I think deep down there has always been a feeling of abandonment. I blamed myself, believing I had done something wrong or that I must not have been good enough for him to want me in his life. My little child perspective couldn’t understand why my dad didn’t want me anymore.
Secondly, my mother suffered from severe depression and bipolar disorder which caused her to have massive mood swings and frequent outbursts of rage. I couldn’t comprehend that she was going through things of her own, I attributed her behavior to having something to do with me. I thought that when she was angry or having a bad day, it was because I had done something wrong. I think deep down I was constantly scared of disappointing her (like I believed I did with my father) and if so, she would stop loving me and also leave.
Still believing that I was responsible for everyone’s anger or upset, I went off to school and was confronted again with yet another harsh reality. Kids can be mean. I was teased, bullied, and called names and took it all to heart. This was my confirmation again that there really was something wrong with me. My dad didn’t want me in his life, I was constantly making my mom unhappy, and the kids at school turned on me too. I was devastated.
This went on into my teens where I had a few run-ins with sexual abuse and then even physical abuse with a partner in my twenties. I turned to alcohol and drugs to run away from these self-deprecating thoughts which in the end merely amplified the problem.
How did those events impact your state of mind and overall psyche?
My life as a whole had become one of constant people-pleasing and exhausting myself. I was always on high alert, trying to “keep the peace” by guessing what may set someone off and then trying to avoid doing anything that may cause that. There was a lingering feeling of uneasiness and that I was not safe. I think I was constantly scared of the other shoe dropping. I was walking around on eggshells believing that at any moment “they” could get upset and that it was all because of me. felt sad and scared but didn’t feel like I was able to show those emotions. I didn’t want to ruffle the waters, so I would follow the leads of others and do what everyone else wanted to do. I was “trying” to keep everyone happy by putting their needs before mine and doing what I thought others wanted of me.
I felt a lot of internal turmoil, felt angry and frustrated inside because I wasn’t following my own impulses, doing what was right for me, and pursuing my own desires. I was angry that it felt like everyone else was more important than me, but it was all because I was focusing on everyone else’s wellbeing ahead of mine. The feelings of losing love and believing that it was because of my shortcomings were excruciating, which I was willing to do anything to avoid and hence why I made everyone else more important than myself.
The entire time I was begging for others to see me and love me, but what I didn’t realize was it was my own inner child begging for me to see her and love her. I was desperately looking outside myself for love and approval, that it clouded the truth of who I was and forgot that I was merely looking for my own self-love.
I was worried that if I didn’t keep up appearances then I would create even more mystery around me to endure as well. I felt like I always had to be happy. I felt like I always had to have a smile on my face. I felt like my emotions were not valid, and I was scared to show how I felt out of fear that it would upset others. I was exhausted because of all the constant effort trying to appear happy when I was not. I felt as though no matter how hard I tried nothing I could do was ever good enough. Because I thought that how others saw me was where my self-worth came from, I was constantly seeking the approval of others. I put continuous added pressure on perfection and getting everything right to gain approval and keep them “happy”. I was tired of trying to be perfect, trying to be the best and “win” so that I had some value.
Any time I saw anyone upset I felt that I had done something wrong, that I had been bad, and that it was my job to fix it. I was tired of constantly trying to explain myself, I thought if people could only understand where I was coming from, that maybe they wouldn’t be so upset and I wouldn’t be in so much trouble. I felt trapped, I felt persecuted, I felt condemned, I felt like I was bad and deserved punishment, I felt weak and powerless, I felt worn out.
“Making” everyone happy was an exhausting and impossible task that could never be accomplished. We can’t “make” anyone happy no matter how hard we try because it’s an inside job, but I was not aware of that. Day in and day out I kept believing I was failing, that something was seriously wrong with me, that no matter what I did I couldn’t do anything right, and that I was worthless.
This sadness and ridiculous pressure I put on myself kept me so exhausted, detached from source energy, and led to me being extremely unhealthy. I was devastated and focused on such mystery that I kept myself so low vibrationally, no wonder I was so sick all the time. As a kid, I was constantly home from school with some physical issue and when I wasn’t sick I would come came home from school in tears. The kids not “liking me” was excruciating. I didn’t feel like I belonged anywhere. In my teens, I had many bouts of depression, left home at a young age, and tried desperately to find love in intimate relationships.
When and why did you decide to look for help to get relief from those feelings (or symptoms), if you did…or do you just look for coping mechanisms on your own?
Looking back now I can see that I tried to use many things in order to cope or numb the feelings I was having inside. I did most things to the extreme, with laser focus of all my energy so I wouldn’t have to deal with the pain I felt. I kept my body and mind occupied by countless dance classes, I ate an enormous amount of food, I kept myself occupied with always having a friend around or being in a relationship. I was a serial monogamist, going from one relationship to another with as very little gap as possible. I now see that I was trying to fill the gap in my heart with the love of someone else.
In my teens, I started smoking cigarettes very early, worked numerous jobs at a time, and then got into drinking alcohol and doing drugs. The partying was harmless at first, but as the years went on it slowly started to creep up on me. When I drank, I drank to get drunk and got to the point of either passing out or blacking out and having no idea what happened. I had many jobs in the bar and restaurant industry and alcohol and drugs soon become a way of life. Almost every daily event involved the consumption of booze in some way. By the time I hit my mid 20’s I was probably consuming alcohol every day of the week. On tame nights I would drink an entire bottle of wine. If I was partying, I was likely drinking copious amounts of alcohol and snorting cocaine to try to “level myself out”. Soon I was carrying cocaine around with me all the time so that I could neutralize my drunkenness (or that’s what I told myself).
In the end, my drinking got to the point where I would wake up in the morning and have a few swigs of vodka just to start my day. By my late 20s alcohol had taken over my entire life. I was a mess. The alcohol just added more guilt and shame to the hard emotions I was already feeling and I became extremely depressed. My relationships were suffering, my career was going nowhere, and the things that were important to me seemed to be slipping away. I was a barely- functioning alcoholic with a drug problem and I was lacking the will you live. Something had to give. I was at the point where I thought if something drastic didn’t change I would either die of misery or simply kill myself. There was however a small glimpse of hope that penetrated through. I had this small, faint whispering voice inside me saying that I was meant for greatness. I partially believed it but was so bewildered by where to start. I was scared to death to stop drinking, but I thought I would have to start there if I wanted to live.
What practices have helped you individually feel the best you can (whether from outside help or on your own)?
The first thing I had to was quit drinking! I wasn’t really addicted to drugs per say, it was merely a side effect of the booze. If I wasn’t drinking, I wouldn’t be smoking or doing drugs either. Putting the bottle down was number one for me on in order to take my life back into my own hands. I couldn’t allow myself to be at the mercy of the substances any longer. I knew I had a warped view of the world when I was under the influence and suffering with such guilt and shame, I needed to stop doing the thing that made me so shameful. Once I put the bottle and drugs down my world started to look very different very quickly. Things got brighter, I was able to handle situations better, my relationships improved and I was finally starting to feel happy again.
This was a dream come true but wasn’t the end all. Now that I was sober, I knew it was important for me to investigate my beliefs, get to the bottom of my misery and turmoil and change my perception of things. My new goal in life became one of Self-Actualization. I went onto spending nearly a decade pursuing a path of self exploration, spirituality and energy work. My spiritual path has included countless modalities, rituals and practices that have all made impacts in my transformation. Here is a list of some of the things I tried:
-Personal development programs
-Choose Again (3 months at a Spiritual Retreat Centre in Costa Rica)
-A Course in Miracles study
-Vipassana (meditation for 10 hrs a day, 10 days straight = 100 hrs of meditation)
-twice weekly group therapy
-Interuniversalism (Erfan Halqeh)
-Ayahuasca (20 times)
-DMT, Mushrooms and other plant medicines
-Holotropic Breathing and breath work
-Fascia movement therapy
-Detox Organ Massage
-A daily meditation practice
-Drumming and chanting
I know this list looks daunting.
Yes I did receive insight, healing and have profound experiences from every modality, however I do not believe that we need to do all of these techniques to gain the peace we want in our lives. If something on this list jumps out at you and there is desire to try it then great! However, the most important thing is your intension behind what you are doing. If healing and peace is your desire and what you focus on, then peace and healing is what you will achieve regardless. It also takes a willingness, trust and an open mind.
I was then introduced to Ester Hicks and Abraham, the law of attraction and the mirror effect. They say that we create our reality and attract things into our experience by the way we feel which translates into vibration. How I feel dictates what I achieve. It stems from a place of being, not a place of doing. I can’t fight for peace. I have to be peaceful to gain peace. Begging for love doesn’t work either. I have to be loving to get love. In my acting I can’t prove that I’m confident. I have to put in the work, do my preparation and then the confidence radiates from me and translates into my scene. What I exude, l attract like a mirror, it’s my energy that creates. Also all the desired feelings of peace, love and joy are on the same vibration as abundance, money, booking the role and having a good time. Each of these feelings are mutually exchangeable and when I have achieved one, the others are right there at my grasp! They say “whatever you focus on you get more of”. The feelings that I have now create my next experience. If I wanted to create a life of joy and fun then I had to start having a good time now! The thing to remember is that it’s not about only doing things that being you joy, but to bring joy to everything you do! I started singing and dancing around the house, dressing up in costume to clean, making mundane tasks fun to do. And just like that life started to get a whole lot more fun, beautiful things were showing up and I felt happier than ever before!
Where I am in my life now is a very different place, so currently the things that I focus on are meditation, Interuniversalism (Erfan Halqeh) and listening to Ester Hicks (Abraham), Matt Kahn or Allan Watts at night. Also there are so many extraordinary books out there on healing, spirituality, awareness and personal development that I continually gain insight and transformation from.
I love meditation and have practiced it for a decade now. I always recommend it to everyone who wants more peace in their life. It isn’t always easy at first to just sit there and do nothing, but it gets easier and easier the more you do it. In the beginning, I started out with just five minute intervals; now I do at least 20 minutes a day, and sometimes will do hours. I think one of our biggest problems as human beings is our monkey mind running around, distracting us with thoughts from the past or the future, which creates a reality that we don’t actually want in the present moment. Meditation helps calm that monkey mind so that we can be present to this actual moment and enjoy the beauty that’s currently around us. Meditation, I believe, links us to a deeper knowing that has us remember that all is good and love.
Over the past few years I’ve been studying what’s called Interuniversalism or “Erfan Halqeh,” where I learned a new way of connecting to what they call Interuniversal Consciousness. Interuniversalism explains the different constituent layers of our existence, the relationship between them, and the connection to our mental, emotional and physical health. We are also taught how to Link or connect to this higher state of consciousness to come into awareness and harmony with ourselves and the universe. Through these Links or open channels, we get connected to specific aspects or functions of source consciousness. The Links allow this information to pour in and cure just about any imbalance in our mental, physical and emotional bodies, very much like a software upgrade would optimize your computer. It has been an incredible class. Now when it’s time for me to meditate, I actually connect to these Links instead. There are over 80 different Links that can be used to pinpoint an infinite number of specific challenges or ailments a person might be coping with. I am now completely done the classes and uses the Links on a regular basis; there are also a handful of Links I’m able to open for others who desire healing and insight as well! I Link others remotely from all over the world and actually have a dozen people I work with on the daily even now!
True story, I had an emergency where I had to be taken to the hospital straight from set. There was a problem with my Appendix and they had to do a rush surgery right then and there. Production actually wrote me out of the rest of the movie not believing for a minute that I would recover In time. I spent a lot of time Linking and was able to miraculously get back on set in just a few days for a full day of shooting!
Why did you decide to share your story (whether previously or on this site for the first time)? Who were/are you hoping to help and how?
It was really important for my own healing journey to share my story. I needed to get honest. I needed to remove the dark grasp of shame and guilt that held tightly due to things I had done in my past and the ways I had been operating .I felt so bad and guilty about my alcohol and drug use and by holding it a secret, all I was doing was solidifying it. The minute I got honest was the beginning of that grasp letting go.
Also, the beautiful thing about sharing my story was that I found out really quickly that nobody cares the way I thought they would! People don’t judge us as harshly as we judge ourselves. The moment I told my stories I instantly felt relief. I also found that when I share, the people around me felt more comfortable to share story and in turn lift their guilt and shame as well. I also think it’s good for others to hear that they aren’t in it alone. There are many people out there suffering in silence and maybe by them hearing that I was able to overcome it, it will give them the small glimpse they need to make changes as well. I have no idea who I will influence, but even if it’s just one person then I feel like I have done my job.
How did people react when you shared your story of overcoming obstacles?
What I was so pleased to find was that people love people that are vulnerable and honest. I found that many people could relate and that it was a very healing experience for many. Now it wasn’t all gravy and simple, there was definitely a lot of people that I had to make amends with. On the most part I was welcomed with open arms by my friends and family. I did see that I was most definitely my worst critic. In time I also found that I was able to repair and strengthen the relationships I had strained as well as make even better, stronger, more authentic relationships moving forward. The most rewarding thing was the newfound relationships I was able to form with my mother! I am often brought to tears with joy, I had no idea we could ever be as close as we are now!
Here are a few links great resources, however if there is anything in the list of modalities or things I tried that aren’t displayed here please reach out to me on Instagram @Mercedes.DeLa.Cruz1
Interuniversalism or Erfan Halqeh
Listening to Ester Hicks on YouTube (search Ester Hicks or Abraham and look up any specific topic or listen freely)
Listening to Matt Kahn on YouTube (search Matt Kahn and listen to his many transmissions)
Access Consciousness (energy work and body work)