Its almost 4am, my usual witching hour of sorts, too early to completely wake to the day yet unable to drift back to a dream state. I’m an early riser & never been much of a sleeper, so, after a few hours of laying my head to rest, I often find myself in that sacred space ‘in between’, as I run the clock out on the dark night so can say hello to dawn’s light. It’s a time that can be filled with fears heightened & anxieties exacerbated, as so many things sometimes seem scarier in the dark.
This morning though, I feel the strong urge to get my body out of bed & move to my desk, with a desire to type away that has my fingers deciding to try & keep up with the thoughts that most times race ‘round so quickly I can’t catch up with them fast enough to articulate an eloquent sharing before they run on. It’s a stream of consciousness that’s been flowing quickly. But I always catch up eventually, in the right & best time for them to flow out. And, in the soft glow of the salt lamp, I sit, I trust, I type.
As fast as I talk & move at times, multi-tasking as I move through each day, I’ve also stepped super slow. So slow can almost seem I’m not moving at all (& in fact I have stopped moving completely at times, but, that’s a whole other story…Chapter 15 to be exact!). My book continues to bless my life by helping me to balance my cautious, sometimes fearful babysteps with the equally important, always scary leaps. Publishing my book was one of them. This post, another. Truly fantastical leaps for a really fantastical story.
Since writing, for me personally, is same as speaking, I’ve felt a lot of pressure these last few years after my manuscript moved through the magical process that turned it into a book. Moving completely out of my comfort zone, in every single area of my life, has brought many challenges. A biggie being the inner knowing that I would be the one best able to bring my book out into the world, much like a mother guides her baby. Like a new mom who can get consumed with worry I might not be as successful as I ‘should’ be, I stressed some in my inexperience. Yet, since another lesson to be aware of, & gift meant to receive & more importantly, accept, was about finding my courage to ask, & allow, for help, & about being brave enough to release the burden of responsibility that can weigh one down, down to the ground, when feeling obligated to put many over myself, for fear of seeming a failure, weak, a cause of another’s burden, I also knew that getting some help in an area foreign & unknown to me held some significance. I struggled trying to find balance, a running theme in my book, & my life. My very limited financial resources at the time made trying to find that right & perfect help a daunting process as my wallet continued to tell me one story while a voice inside, my head or my heart I couldn’t quite figure out, tried to convince me something else. At a certain point I finally surrendered, stopped trying to figure it out & let go, again, of a control issue that has dogged me a good part of my life, & allowed a higher power to guide me through a process that would have me taking my book on the road I needed to travel as an author wanting to promote her book. That path eventually had me decide I needed to do it myself even as it came with much scariness & struggle. It’s a unique & spectacular story yet with that blessing came an equally extraordinary challenge to share it. I couldn’t have the swing of incredible, inspiring & beautiful one way without accepting the pendulum swing of the other side holding potential for it to inspire a not so pretty feeling for some. That possibility petrified me. The thought of speaking publicly about the book terrified me since those thoughts seemed intent to take me down a negative path. Written interviews weren’t the stressors. Having the time to choose my words to a question I was given was one thing. But, the reality of going cold into an speaking interview having no idea what would be asked, with no time to take a beat or a breath before having to hope the right & perfect & most eloquent answer would flow out was a daunting pressure I felt. Trying to help ‘everybody’ while hurting nobody is an impossible task to take on. My spiritual journey had already taught me this, but my head forgets that sometimes.
There have been many lessons & gifts on my 3 year mini-life to promote my memoir… truly lovely gems placed before me were sweet surprises. But, some really dark rocks thrown at me shocked me, & I stumbled on them. I’ve come to trust all were meant to help, even though it certainly didn’t always feel that way. But, every single one, to give me the gift I’d prayed for…each one, to give me the opportunity to be able to choose again, at a new certain age, in a new awareness, consciousness & clarity.
That state, between the consciousness that awakens us & moves us through our day, & the dream state where our higher selves, along with our lower selves; our sub & unconscious, all play together while our physical bodies rest, is not just where I drift in bed in the pre-dawn at times, but, is where I wandered a good part of my adult life. I waffled for some time as I was growing, becoming more aware, because, as with much of humanity, it brought some fear. These new fears in this new consciousness were different than the ones I’d grown up with. As I opened up to the wonderful acceptance I was in control of my own life, & responsible for no one else’s, I opened up a can of worms in another way, at least that is the way it felt some of that time. The clarity it was my own self keeping me living a certain way in my life that had me not feeling satisfied in stunned me at first. It took awhile to acknowledge it, accept it, & finally embrace it. The anxiety didn’t magically disappear, it just shifted a bit as I was learning & growing, maturing & venturing forward as I tried to make sense of it all. As I took more responsibility for my thoughts, my words, my actions, I could see the shift taking place. Is a process indeed, of shedding & re-shedding. But, even though the outside stressors started to be seen differently as I grew on the inside, some universal truths stayed very much same. The actions we take hold different energy, & thus, different karma, consequences, & outcomes when our choices are made in less conscious states than when we make our choices after awakening to our awakening! When we know something, and make a conscious choice not to do better when we are in that awareness, is a much more powerFull statement to the gods in the Universe, & our own soul. As I grew, part of me wanted to go back, turn away from the consciousness that was growing inside. Taking responsibility for my life, my choices about everything…from how I speak, & act, & am in this world, how I treat people, how I treat my own self, was hard at times, was scary…while same time felt empowering & invigorating. What if I fail, what if I get hurt, what if what if what if wonders worried me constantly. But I kept babystepping through the blurriness my brain tried to keep fogging my windows with. Something within kept stirring my soul, like windshield wipers helping to clear the path. The Universe will always help…it will use ease & grace, it will nudge, it will carry & it will push as it tries to help. There were times I needed a 2x4 to get my attention when I wasn’t staying true to my intention to change my life once I became aware, & conscious that I really wanted to!
On many levels there is something comfortable about moving through life that way, with blinders kept on, yet, since comfort zones are not always actually comfortable, I found it dissatisfying & in a melancholy lonely place as a middle aged adult as a result of looking in only one direction when part of me wanted to finally turn my head desperately & look around at an amazing world. Once you know something, you cannot un-know it, & when you accept that, then, the journey shifts, from learning about it, to learning how to actually live with it, in it, as part of it, not only as a bystander on the sidelines. And, it is an exquisite journey, even if it can feel like you are being spanked in the hiney sometimes as God, in as graceful way as we choose for our own selves, offers assistance.
After my memoir was published, it was suggested to me, through invitation & advice, to write more, as a viable path to promoting it. And each time, the response in my head went something like this…WTF? Write more? I just finished a book. It kicked my ass. Im drained. Im exhausted. I have not a word left in me. What more do I have to say? I don’t want to talk, type, or write about anything else, the book is all I have to say. I was already scared from the get go, to share my story myself, & feeling I now had to find something else to say to be able to say what I wanted scared me even more! I didn’t understand the process, nor did I want to take part in it to be honest…having to talk & write about other stuff so people would want to read what I wrote in the 1st place. It seemed an endless circle of stress I felt faced with. I’m not a writer, I didn’t plan a book myself, what else do I have to say? Those wonders & questions, amongst so many others, swirled around me as I re-committed over & again to going with the flow of my life after my dad passed & I embarked on a journey right smack mid center (I hope!) of my life. Those swirls tried to turn me around, spin me back, dizzy me into a different direction…my old way of living where those swirls WERE my life, not part of it. There was no, move through so you can move beyond. There was no, have patience because it will end eventually & you will exit this challenging tunnel onto a new soulful side of something. The swirl WAS the side, if that makes any sense. I’m a runner, with a special love for distance & endurance, not speed. As I’ve run my course these last 3 years, swirling with the flow, I realized I wasn’t wanting to accept one of those important gifts & opportunities from the Universe I had asked for, one of the gifts from God I’d prayed for. The chance to make a new choice stared me straight on at a certain point, like a laser, & like a taser, stunned me in its force. A choice to hide & cower in the corner of another un-comfortable comfort zone in my life, afraid of what others may think, or choose to dare to bare my soul in bravery shook me to my core. And, in a consciousness now that knew full well what the heck I was doing… I turned away, and began to run the other way again. I actively, with full intention, & much fear behind it, chose to run away in my new awareness, instead of facing it & looking that fear in the eye. I didn’t hold my form. It pained me as I ran, knowing that in that broken form, I held my father’s broken heart.
This ‘peace’ I sit & write in this dawn’s early light, has taken almost 3 years to make its way out of me, with not even my nearest & dearest being shared with, so consumed with fear I became & felt must stay locked inside. An anniversary upon me as I type it out, almost 3 years to the day since another powerful seed was planted & began to bud inside me. In that gestation, I returned again, to every issue I had faced as a young girl, carried with me into early adulthood & allowed to play a big part in my making some important life choices. I feel proud I was able to meet many of them head on & choose differently in the face of those same issues, just as I had pledged to myself I would if ever given the chance to do so again. I wasn’t always perfect, sometimes far from it, but, any of those times were my remind & motivation to try & do better with the next sunrise, should I be so blessed to be able to see another one. And I turned & returned often, to some sacred core truths. Many were difficult, just like it had been on the mini-life to the manuscript I would eventually write myself, & again as that manuscript moved me through a mini-life as it became a book. But one choice seemed ‘almost’ impossible to make. So impossible, I turned away from it, not wanting to face what another’s choice meant for so many of us. With God’s grace I finally came to a place of acceptance. That surrender to a higher power compels me to make that different choice now, even in my most scariest fears of what some may think…of me, my ‘story’, my life. In this meaningful month that found me starting a new, exciting marathon run in my life, and, another moving milestone a few short years later that moved me back so fast it felt I’d traveled to my childhood in a time machine, & once I arrived almost stopped me from running for good, I choose now to unburden from my back a weight I’ve been running with since. A fear, a responsibility, an obligation, a threat, that I allowed someone else to place upon it in their own fears and anxieties, and, accepted as my own, as I had done my whole earlier life almost broke me under its weight as I carried it. But, this time, it carried with it a much more ominous feeling…because I knew full well I was running away this time. As a child, I hadn’t really understood why I was taking many of the actions I was. Now, the awareness of what I was doing, whacked me hard, & often, with each step I chose to run away from myself. A divine different time this November as I finally make a different choice, not to let it stop me, even if had slowed me. My book shares a special connection to turtle power…so, a sentimental finish line for this mini-life’s 3 year run for this turtle indeed!
Spiritual magazines & e-zines like Mystic Living Today, newsletters, blogs, daily emails from my favorite spiritual teachers have helped me hold my form as I have flowed. Their information & inspiration were significant supports as I changed my life, & continue to assist me on this mini-journey now. What I read when I open their pages quiets my brain, calms my mind, & soothes my heart as I stay committed to going with the flow of my life, & continue to trust I’m the best one to share my own story, not let another try to morph it into a story it is not, or, let anyone else take it from me after using a threat to try & erase mine. After a gift given freely turned to a demand for more from me, that demand changed the course of ‘everything’ at that point. More was now tried to be taken, with force, intimidation & a fear factor involved. It wasn’t physical force, but was a force nonetheless. The tactic & form the demand took was surrounded, & sent, in great fear, with the intent to stir up my own, I feel strongly. I feared for my survival after that major turning point. A very real, very scary threat from a most powerful army. Sharing my story with others to help them make changes in their own lives if they were to want to, which could then ripple out to help others in an IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE kinda wave, is not the same as letting others take your story by force, your soul, by un-holy threat. Is not the same thing, in fact, its very much a reverse kind of circle…opposite & in complete contrast to the precious point of my whole story.
A wonder of the divine Universe, to be able to gift each person with the opportunity to take away from every experience exactly what each unique soul desires from it is a glorious wonder for sure. My story shares my journey to do just that…find my blessing, even in some of my most painful experiences.
That sharing is not a judgment on anyone’s choice to remain in a marriage or move away from a marriage but a sharing of my struggle to make my choice. Not a judgment about anyone else’s choice to move in courage or in cowardice, but a sharing of my own struggles with both. Not a judgment about another’s choice to keep a story secret, on the inside, but an honoring of my own choice to move my own inside to the outside finally. Not to question anyone else’s truths, just pray to stay true to my own. That prayer, to stay true to the self I had finally become courageous enough to show the world, took me to my knees as I began the process to promote my story. From that point of threat, it quickly returned again, to a full circle story about faith, & fear. Would I allow other’s choices to leave me feeling demeaned, worthless, humiliated became the question, yet again. Would I take another’s ‘stuff’ on as my own became the issue, yet again. I allowed others to rattle my inside, with a lot of outside real life might.
I remain true to what I share in my book…true love can only ever want what their beloved wants for themselves. Whether that true love is for a child, a best friend, a lover…sometimes what that love wants for themself isn’t what we want for them, isn’t what our own self wishes for them, but, that is the gift that true love gives, which, I feel is very different from the day to day real love most of us give out. And I want for my own self everything I worked so diligently & committedly to be able to experience at this certain age. After giving that gift to another I was threatened into not living it, scared into sharing about it. Broken hearts, wounded spirits, disappointments, sadness, grief,…. can heal from hurt. Its part of the process of living & loving, grieving & growing. But, the trauma & harm inflicted when threats are used to keep something inside doesn’t allow for healing. When something can’t move anywhere, & stays stuck inside, is a much different journey to recover from. This last 3 year mini-life has been my life’s most difficult journey, for many reasons, all stemming from another’s choice to use fear, not love, to try & impart change. It took me awhile, but I found the blessing as it circled me back to a truth it took me a long time to round & figure out…its not the best way to move someone…at least not for me.
My safety, security & well being were all put in jeopardy at that pivotal point. And, I regressed as I became even more scared than I ever had been to speak, while another continued to echo my voice. It rendered it almost impossible for me to use my own words for my own self. Like the dog I mentioned that followed me a good part of my life, I felt muzzled, unable to open my mouth about my marriage, my fears, my insides, my struggles, my spirituality, my soul. So, I babystepped, scared to my wits most of the time, staying behind my keyboard, where I felt safer. Once in awhile I was able to grasp enough courage to open my mouth, but every fiber in me shook through each experience. I have babystepped to standing up to the fear instilled by that threat. But, the toll it took was great, similar to the toll the journey that took me to the book, only far more damaging at the point after it. It was now a road that had others, including myself, more aware in consciousness than the time that the book spans. As the story took a big step towards moving to the real outside world, a threat moved me into a truly dark place. It returned me to a place I was familiar with after having spent some time there in my younger years. Only this time, far different in many ways.
I was terrified back into a hole that had been my life’s mission to climb out of. The experience had me 2nd, 3rd, & 4th guessing everyone & everything, including myself, on the path to promote my book. I have no idea if, or how many more than the ones I became aware of, & I thank God I finally realized it doesn’t matter how many more might have been made along the way in more secrecy. I was almost silenced completely because of one. One experience was powerful enough to almost do me in. Really, truly. A desolate place, scarier than any road I’d traveled as a child. I stared down some scary options on a pitch black crossroad at that point of threat, more ominous than I ever imagined when I set out on my own yellow brick road after my dad died. I was brokenhearted & feeling betrayed after that threat, yes, but, that wasn’t what almost did me in. Its harm came as it stripped away my ability to move on with my own story, and in my life. That was the game changer, not the fact I was sad I had been left standing with a broken heart & not a single solitary word. That was healable, brutal as that was. After that threat though, I wasn’t sure, anymore, &, in that incredible gut wrenching fear, my dad reached again, & held my hand these last 3 years again as I worked through that trauma & fear.
Using my story to motivate & empower others to accept that they can change their lives at a certain age, at any age, as I return to the new life, & new road I made the choice to move myself onto after my dad died is the whole point of the story. For me, my sharing honors his death, which was a gift of new life for me. My sharing honors his life, & our relationship. These 3 years this secret has weighed on my heart, mind & soul, on my mental & emotional state I may have slowed to an almost halt but I continued to babystep through. But, my dad continues to remind me babysteps are beautiful, but, leaps are what make life worth living. I very much want to return to living now…in all areas of my life. The story, I continue to feel strongly, will help me to be able to do that, as long as I embrace the courage needed to put my running sneakers back on & move down different roads at this point, to promote the book, not just request reviews for it as I stay rounding a scared circle of ‘just one more good review’ & then I will feel brave enough to move down different venues with it; just one more review to help me feel courageous enough to face the judgment, the criticism, & fight that may follow. I moved slowly to the awareness it will only be possible for me to move out of the circle of fear if I continue to lay my heart open in vulnerability. My heart was closed for a long time after that experience. It had been a major milestone to finally open it & I felt it slam shut almost immediately after allowing another full access to it. But, I know how important it is to open it again. I want to open it again. I have nothing to be ashamed of, nor do I truly feel does the one who scared me, not in the big picture of the Universe & divinity, although I might guess in his real life humanness he might feel he did, but that’s a whole other story. It was scary circle to round these last 3 years, but a gift. My memoir was a journey to finally feel worthy, so, not all that surprising as I look back to see the book was not yet out of the gate of the publishing house when those issues stirred & circled again, & then, ran away with that worthiness. Its taken me 3 years to catch up with it, with myself, after my form was broken a bit, but I’m happy to be holding my form again.
It was an aha moment indeed for me when I realized this story was about so much more than a re-connection & love story with an old friend. That magical moment reaffirmed the faith that assures me is a blessed thing when we can stay open, even if just a crack sometimes, & let the Universe do its thing. When we take responsibility for what we have control over; ourselves, our choices, our actions, & then, open our hands in trust that the rest will be picked up by much more powerful hands, those hands, that force & energy can co-create some pretty cool stuff with us. Sometimes though, our minds, & others, & other’s minds push us back.
Using, & abusing, power & influence to scare another into silence to protect secrets is so unhealthy, & so harmful. The damage so far reaching. Whether man or woman, black or white, young or old, whether is a story that abuses by threatening physical harm, emotional blackmail or promises financial ruin, all are damaging far beyond feeling hurt. My story doesn’t involve a sexual predator, in fact, my story in many ways is about as far from sex as you can get. I thank God for that…is a different story indeed than I would have wanted for my own, but, there is a tiny thread of connection & sliver of similarity to the many stories in the media these days about abuse of power preying on the weaker. My memoir is about relationships & intimacy, &, my own personal quest for intimacy in my life left me vulnerable, which, some see as weakness. I made some very difficult choices in my life when I reached a certain age & finally felt worthy of putting myself & my own happiness first. The place I was tried to be pushed to 3 years ago, & successfully pushed as it knocked me down, & back, for awhile, left me feeling another’s life was more important than mine, another’s worth, more than me. To stay in that place though is a dishonor to all that my dad helped me to finally accept & embrace about myself through our relationship. It dishonors my precious sons, tainting the lessons I learned from my dad that I’d made a devoted choice to then teach to them through my actions, not just my words. I struggled to reverse a circle of parenting I felt I had rounded with my boys in their younger years that would now encourage them to be true to themselves over everything, & have the courage to live that true self in the very real world. Most of all, to stay in that place I was pushed into by that threat would be to relinquish the most cherished gift of all, would be the biggest dishonoring of my own self…& the kind of relationships I want at this point in my life….ones where there is no room for insensitivity, fear, or abuse ruling.
I can remember while pregnant not being able to read the newspaper, so overwhelmed with the pain & suffering I saw in the world around me. I attributed it to the hormonal changes of pregnancy but the truth is I honestly feel I’m a bit of an empath, a super sensitive person who sometimes strains under the weight of others suffering, if I allow it into the sacred space of my own energy field that surrounds me. The spiritual journey I embarked on as a young woman helped me to finally make some soulful sense out of the world & helped me to be able to move in it in a different way that I had in my earlier years. It didn’t toughen my skin, it expanded my body mind & soul. The experience 3 years ago pushed me right back to that place, fast & hard, & I found myself once again, trying to make sense out of a sometimes cruel, harsh, seemingly unfair world, even though my soul & my faith whispered constantly reminding me there is always balance in God’s eyes. My faith assures me victims, luck & unfairness truly doesn’t exist in the divine Universe. Yet, our human lives can sometimes take a shot at that faith as we make our ways in our real day to day lives.
The daily reminds & inspires are so helpful, but there is much more needed on the journey to change a life. There is a depth that needs to be gone to so people can immerse themselves fully. That deep dive brings us to the place where those daily doses of inspiration can actually be reminders & not just pipe dreams. But that leap, that dive, is so scary. I feel strongly that people sharing their own stories is what best helps others find the courage to do same. That’s where the change happens. That’s when the shift takes place…when people can connect with others & not feel so alone. In unity, there is strength. When we share our stuff, it is easier to feel a connection with others, who many times may seem on the outside to be quite different.
A special significance that I was invited into the November issue of this special magazine. A right & perfect place for a soulful release, as if as I let go of those fears from my one hand the magical mystical Universe can take hold my opened hand. 11/1/09 saw me set out on a marathon run I never could have imagined for myself at the time. A request from MysticLivingToday to share something in this issue reminded me I want to continue running, not from & away from myself, but towards everything blessed & beautiful this world has to offer. I want to return to opening up, today, not tomorrow, not some hoped for future date, but today…with my whole heart, my full consciousness, my complete awareness.
This purge & piece is a statement to the Universe, an open letter to God, about a circle I don’t want to keep rounding, one powered by fear, governed by force. An interesting ‘coincidence’, my daily Law of Attraction quote in my inbox just this very morn reminded that whenever you think, speak or act in fear not love, you hold everything back. Whether true love, romance or intimacy, whether good health, good fortune or good friendship, when we move in fear, we are moving in the wrong direction to bring us to those things. I had surely returned to speaking, & moving, with a lot of fear these last 3 years. As my dad continues to help me hold my form & rest in faith, I am reminded on this special day…I may not have control over what others may think, feel or believe about my extraordinary ordinary story, but, I do have control over what I think, I feel, I believe, and that is what is most important.
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