How To Fight For Change Like The Wise Ones

“I was once asked why I don’t participate in anti-war demonstrations. I said that I will never do that, but as soon as you have a pro-peace rally, I’ll be there.” -Mother Teresa838305

 

I think of her this morning and her wise response as I think about all those going through turmoil wishing to fight against this or that or something else. While I have an empathetic heart, I can’t help but think that if we “fight against” something, all that will do will draw more energy towards that something no matter what it is and that thing will only grow bigger and stronger because of it.

 

If we really want to see change, then we must “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” -Mahatama Gandhi. Powerful. 

 

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What kind of fighting style is this you ask?

“You can call it the art of fighting without fighting.” -Bruce Lee
Enter the Dragon, 1973

Totally kick ass.

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Things to make you go hmmm….

 

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More Love Is More Power

 

JeffDeyo

Power.

Seriously, I’ve been thinking about it a lot. People have such issues with the word power it’s almost taboo to say, “I am a powerful being.” I suppose it’s all a matter of perception, and how the word power makes you feel because of that perception. I’ve never been afraid of that word or intimidated by it to soften it up by having to say, “I am an empowered woman.” No, I like to say that:

“I am a powerful woman.”
” I have the power to create the life I want to live.”
” I have the power to bring my deepest, most passionate desires into being in the here and now.”images

Power.

It’s true, at this point in my life, I am stepping into my power, and I feel it flowing through me. What a delicious feeling it is to be standing in this place of power that is mine, and to feel it pulsating through me, and knowing that I hold this power to do and achieve anything I desire with all my heart. I am coming into realizing how powerful I really am, and how much more I can be.

Power.

Power is nothing but unrealized potential and raw energy and remains so until you tap into it. Then it becomes active, and used properly can help you achieve whatever your heart desires. It’s such a simple concept, too simple I think, and remains hidden in a cloak of simplicity from those not ready to step into their place of power, and receive it.

Power.

I remember at one point I didn’t have much of it, and what I did have I gave away to other people. I was too young, too naive, and scared to stand up in my power, speak my truth. In fact, I didn’t have a truth to speak because I felt I had no place, therefore was I was ignorantly powerless.

Even when I was having my first daughter at the tender age of 18, I was told by her father’s mother to name my baby Jessica. I hated that name as for as far back as I could remember. Jessica. I thought what an ugly name! I hated it. But her father’s mother, a pretty powerful woman in her own right, used her power over me because of course, I let her. I let her because I didn’t recognize I had power of my own and thus, I caved and named my first-born Jessica.

Powerless

She thought she was in control to the point of even when I went into the nursery to see my baby girl for one of first times I could get out of bed on my own, she tried to prevent me from being near her. Jessica was in one of those incubators where you could put your hands inside to touch her. As I reached in to touch my daughter that I’d given birth too just hours earlier, her grandmother stood over me and in front of all of my friends who were also there to see me and my new-born baby girl, swatted my hand away, telling me to “Leave her alone, let her sleep!”

Powerless

That’s when what little power in the guise of a “fuck you” out of embarrassment and rebellion inside of me took over and told her to “Back off, I’ll touch MY baby if I want to”. Her interference with my oldest daughter from literally before she was even out of the womb has had a major impact on the relationship between Jessica and I. Over the years I felt powerless to do too much of anything but rebel in a negative fashion which wasn’t healthy for neither my daughter or myself.

But as they say, “That was then, this is now”.

Things are much different. I know what I think I am even though I’m so much more than my mind can fathom. I know that within me, within my Soul is the essence of the Divine Spirit, and that is pure power. For me, that power is Love, the most powerful of all. The Only Power.

Therefore all things that come from it are good.

When I think of power, I think of that Force that once tapped into allows me to stand in it, filling with me with the awareness that I am truly the one who is making my own choices, whether it’s to be miserable, sad, and poverty minded therefore being all those things. Knowing that I have, unconsciously, made those previous choices many times over that left me unhappy, unhealthy, miserable and financially poor.Power

Power.

I now make the conscious and deliberate choice to be happy, to be filled with a sense of joy, and ecstasy, to be of a pure blissful mind with the realization is that what is, has already been created–I am no “co-creator” as I’ve created nothing. Rather, I choose to align myself with that specific vibration, to be in a place to receive health, happiness, joy, and experience the bliss of great financial abundance–that is my right. That is the power of my choice, that is my gift, my gift of choice. My awareness of that fact is power.

From that Power that is Love, all things that come from it are good.

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P.S

This song I’ve posted with lyrics, “More Love, More Power” by Jeff Deyo is a song that really gets to the heart of me. At its heart, it is a Christian song. Although I do not identify as a Christian, I honor, and respect the teachings of Jesus and everything he symbolizes as much as Buddha, Goddess and any other mystic holy teacher. This song speaks so directly into my Soul, of who I am and what I want and need in my life.

More Love, More Power. 

Many times I listen to this song I am filled with such overwhelming emotion I cry. I just let the tears flow out. I don’t just hear music but I feel the intensity of it. I don’t just hear the words, I absorb them, take them into myself like a sponge because these are the affirmations of my world at any given moment. He writes, “More Love, More Power, More of You In My Life”

For Jeff Deyo, that is Jesus. Jesus is Love, Jesus is the Power. For me, it’s Love, it’s Power they are one in the same and everything good and right. This is my Soul’s affirmations in song. I hope you enjoy it as well.

A Big Fat Truth: It Isn’t Cute, It Isn’t Sexy-It’s Probably Killing You.

*Note to readers:

This actually started out this morning as a just one of those lengthier type of Facebook status updates. Instead, I kept writing, and writing. I decided it was best shared here instead, which of course will still be shared on Facebook as well. Just not like I originally intended. ~

Here’s what I don’t understand, we can’t even talk about obesity without people getting upset, claiming “Fat Shaming” and if we can’t talk about the real issues without being shut down the moment we start talking them, then we will never be able to deal with any of them.

As many may now know, I’ve decided to get certified as a health and nutrition coach not only to help other people but to help my SELF. Once upon a time, like many of us, I was in tip-top physical shape, a “smokin’ hot body” if I say so myself. There’s some on this list who knew me when and can verify that is true. Over the years, children, busy lifestyle, depression, divorce, and whatever else real-but-still-excuse- I let get in the way, I gained a significant amount of weight.

At one point I was diagnosed with metabolic syndrome some years back, and still I did nothing. I hid from my friends who knew me ‘back-in-the-day” for I knew they’d be shocked at how I looked. I didn’t do much of anything anymore but take care of my girls all the while getting unhealthier by the day.

It wasn’t until something incredible happened in 2012 that I decided to reclaim the life that was mine. I wanted to live a long, healthy life, and be there for my daughters, my granddaughters (I just assume they will be girls too) and their children. I wanted to enjoy life and everything it has to offer. I started a diet and exercise routine, started losing weight and suddenly developed stomach issues. I lost a considerable amount of weight then due to both the diet, exercise and of course the stomach issues that eventually landed me in the hospital having surgery in May of 2012.

Since then it’s been an off and on type of relationship. I’ve made friends with my self, and my body but I realize now I didn’t quite fall desperately-in-love with myself and my body like I should have. So I treated my Self and my body like the good friend you see every now and again; the kind that you don’t have to see or talk often but when you do, it’s like nothing ever changed? Yes, I treated my Self and my body like that.

What I’ve learned is that you can do that with real friends in other bodies, but you can not do that to your self. It’s no good, not very healthy.

I did gain some weight back, then lost it again and then started a short cycle of up a few pounds and then down a few pounds, and all the while getting upset, and frustrated with my body in the process, and like the friend you start to avoid because they are getting on your nerves always complaining about this, or whining about that, I started to avoid my Self, and my body.

Sure, I tried to live the healthy-ish lifestyle, and I did the main things, like eat, sleep and shower. I even kept up my beautifying routine, which brings me to yet another point:

One of my daughters said to me about why I look younger than I actually am, “Mommy, you look so young because you take damn good care, almost obsessive care of your skin naturally and it shows.”

I thought to myself how true that statement was and yet, why did I only stop at my skin? Certainly, that’s not the only reason my skin looks good. There’s environmental factors, genetics, I’m a non-smoker, I drink lots of water, yeah…I feed my skin good stuff, nothing but the best naturally.

Wow. Only my skin?! What the hell is wrong with me?! Here I am obsessing over having healthy looking skin but I wasn’t bothered with making the effort to be healthy in my physical body! Why didn’t I put forth just as much effort in my overall health, and not just focused on my awesome skin care routine?!

Why?! I like having fabulous, youthful looking skin. You’d think I’d want the healthy body to go with that. But something inside of me was sabotaging my efforts to my good health journey, and sadly, apparently it didn’t take much. My focus remained on how to have healthier, more youthful, glowing skin.

No, I’m not interested in looking 21, that’s not the goal. Ironically, my goal was to be a vibrant, radiant, healthy looking woman whatever my age. Yes, that’s right, my goal was to look vibrant, radiant and healthy, without, apparently, actually being healthy.

How oxymoronic is that?

Fat In Florida:

After I moved into my father’s house is when I felt the worst. You can read more about that experience here in the 8 Pearls Of Light That Guided Me Through Hell post. I didn’t exercise, I didn’t yoga anymore, I didn’t even walk. My weight was an issue they liked to talk about, to humiliate me to bring me down, even though they are fat slobs themselves.

I gained a few pounds as if out of rebellion to say, “Eff you! You don’t control my life, and damn sure not my weight.” How stupid was that? Here I was sabotaging my health because my father and is wife are idiots. This is a perfect example of how moving from an ego-centered place will get you screwed every time. And a fatter ass.

Reclaiming Aura

After we moved out, and into our place where we are, I needed time to decompress. I still didn’t jump back-into the weight-loss and healthy-ish lifestyle I was mostly-kind- of-trying to live back in Ohio. I went to work, and have been slowly making our condo our place again.

We’ve now officially been here over 2 months, and I’ve started to find my groove again. Before I left Ohio, a big issue for me then was, “What am I going to do with my life when I grow up?” “What is my calling?” I knew I didn’t want to work in the medical field doing what I do for the rest of my life. Yet, I knew that my calling is to be of service to people, and community. Once I started to settle in here at the condo a bit more, with all of the tension previous months at my father’s house being dissolved into nothingness, these questions were now at the forefront of my mind, and heart once more.

I don’t remember the definitive moment if there was one where I decided enough is enough, and I have to do something. But something indeed happened to me. In a moment of pure, and divine stillness, everything changed. I knew exactly what I wanted to do, what I needed to do, what I was called to do, and I decided right then and there to do it with the same passion, love and excitement I’d do for my loved ones, for my best friend to make their life more comfortable, happy and complete.

I decided to be my own Best Friend. To not only love my Self fearlessly, and courageously despite having ignored my Self for so long, but also to fall IN- Love with my Best Friend, my Self–and I’m falling, deeper and deeper with every day that passed by.

I wanted to do anything, and everything I could for my Best Friend, to show her that I am truly sorry for the way I’ve treated her, the ONE person who’s been with me through every single thing I’ve ever gone through, the ONE person who’s had my back through thick and thin (pun intended); she is the ONE person who took the hit, no matter how hard, for every rotten and stupid choice I’ve ever made. I owed to her, my Best Friend, My Self, do whatever I could to make things right.

Where to start? That was easy. I knew I treated her skin good, so I needed to treat the rest of her good too. I have always been an advocate of natural medicine (rarely ever relying on the doctors and big pharma as I’m terrified of them; working in a hospital and seeing up close and personal what goes on makes me even more weary of the network), raw foods, herbs and supplements, using many almost religiously when sick, and for preventive means. Whatever I did had to be focused somewhere in health and wellness.

Then lightening struck.

I saw an add for Institute of Integrative Nutrition, and I wanted to check that out. The moment I clicked on the link for the website, talked to some graduates, I knew without a doubt, this was for me. The fact that I already have a life coaching background made this even better. This was how I was going to begin to repay my Best Friend, my own beautiful Self back for every poor health decision I ever made.

This is a GIFT of health I am giving to me, Aura, and to my Best Friend-Self because I’m worth it! I realized it’s also a gift I’ll be able to share, and give to other people on the journey to health, wellness and happiness.

So my question is this:

Is there going to be a problem when I’m sharing on the social networks/public platforms what I’m learning, changing and growing from? Is there going to be a problem out there with the sensitive people who might benefit from some of the information I might share, and accuse me of “fat shaming?”

I have no doubt there will be. And that’s simply too bad, and so sad. I’ll not take it personal because I know it’s about their own issues coming to the surface, and something they don’t want to look at. As I’ve already said, I’ve been there. Now I’m on the journey back to healthy, and will gladly share that journey with any one else who wants to walk it, run it, or bike it with me.

Being Fat, Overweight, and Obese isn’t Ugly! It’s just Unhealthy!

Recently, I read an article called, My wedding was perfect and I was fat as hell the whole time”.  While I admit it was a beautiful read, and I’m so glad that the bride felt good in her own skin, as fat as she is (her words), really reading those words, having been where she is, I know that for the most part, women who say, “I’m fat and happy” are only superficially happy. I’ve been there, I’ve done that. Inside, deep inside, we are miserable, frustrated, and it’s not that we don’t want to get the weight off, it’s that we don’t know how. So instead, we opt for the in-your-face-I’m-fat-love-me-or-don’t-I-don’t-give-a-fuck attitude.

But we do give a fuck. Deep down, we really do give a fuck.

Oh sure, everyone knows, “Eat less, move your body more burn more fat” –yes, we know this much. But what we have a difficult time doing is getting to the heart of the problem of the weight in first place. Most often, it is a deep rooted pain, and rejection of self on the deepest level, so deep we aren’t even consciously aware of it. So deep, we deny it and say, “Oh hell no, girlfriend, I love myself, every inch of my fat body.”

Lies. All Lies.

It’s a brutal and painful hurt, which is why it’s buried so deep. We don’t want to look at it. If we have to look at it, we have to deal with it. This, to me, is where the whole “fat acceptance” comes in to play.

It’s not about other people having to accept us because we might be fat. Floating pictures of fat women in revealing outfits followed by and supported with encouraging comments meant to boost the self-confidence only helps with the outer-self, the self esteem which is very important. Big women need to know they are beautiful, they are gorgeous as anyone else. And yet, still, no matter what, it all comes back to us accepting ourselves as we are.

This photo of a woman in her black leotard reads, “I’m not “pretty for a big girl”.  I’m pretty period.”Im+not+pretty+for+a+big+girl

Sure she is. She’s god damn gorgeous-as-she-is. It matters not if she’s a big girl in regard to being “pretty” or “gorgeous”. I see that it is the external where everyone’s focus seems to be, on whether or not a woman is beautiful, fat or not.

Of course she is.

 

To me the real questions are these:

Behind her physical beauty, is she healthy? What’s her heart look like? Is she at risk for other life-threatening diseases? And do we do more harm by ignoring the “fat issue” , pretending it doesn’t matter as long as the bigger woman feels attractive, and beautiful?

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An over-weight and obese heart. There’s nothing “pretty” or “beautiful” about this.

Fat acceptance starts with ourselves. It’s more than just accepting that, “Sure, yeah I know I’m a big girl/boy”. It’s beyond being stunningly gorgeous on the outside no matter what size you are. That’s external. It’s about the life-long haul; it’s finding the root cause, the emotional, mental and spiritual issue behind all of what’s causing us to hold on to the extra weight that will eventually lead to sickness, and other health issues that could lead to a host of other weight-related dis-eases that can cause early death. It is accepting who we are, and as fat as we are, and giving our fat self nothing but pure love. Real self-love, with the same kind of passion and intensity you’d give to another loved one. It’s the same kind, if not deeper, and stronger love we must give to our own Best Friend–Our Self.

When an overweight and/or obese person is accepted, and loved completely, fully from the self, only then can they begin to see real changes taking place in all aspects of their lives. Interesting enough, when most people fall in love one of the first things that often happens is they lose weight. Imagine falling in deep love with your Self…I’d imagine the weight of deep rooted pain, hurt, and shame carried around for years would begin to fall off, almost effortlessly. I can imagine that because it happened to me.

Interesting how that happens, right?

 

 

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The Best Tarot Readers Like Onions

thI remember the first time, many moons ago,  I read that onions were sacred to the Egyptian Goddess Isis. My immediate thought was that an onion was an odd thing to be so sacred. However, as I grew in knowledge, and deeper wisdom unfolded, I began to see why the Ancient Egyptians likened the onion to Isis. Aside from its many healing properties from healing bee stings, insect bites, ridding of warts, corns, and other skin afflictions; curing disease, repelling evil curses, and protecting children from sickness, and to alleviate asthma, and other breathing issues as well as many other uses. It was also considered a symbol of the universe, and its multi-layered dimensions; one layer of existence revealing the next.

Today while shuffling my cards and my eye caught the statue of Isis on my altar. I drew “The Fool”. I put the other cards down, and looked at this card, which is from the Rider-Waite-Smith deck, and instantly I thought of the onion, and its many layers. It made me think deeply of the Tarot in general, readings, and my friends who read them.

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I have many friends who read the Tarot, and yet I rarely have them read for me for several reasons. It isn’t because they aren’t good at reading the cards or haven’t mastered the concrete definitions of the cards but because one can not be told the mysteries of ones soul by another. We have all the answers we need within. It is said in may esoteric circles, that “We need only remember all that we have forgotten.” It is the Tarot readers responsibility to guide, and encourage the querent to the answers within using the Tarot as a tool, not to attempt to ‘tell’ anyone what their future holds or what is going on in their past or current situations.

A querent who is conscious of his or her own life affairs should certainly already know this much. Unfortunately, a lot of  Tarot readers  I know and have experience with, friends included, do not seem to get beyond the mastery level of fixed definitions, and therefore leave the layers of the Tarot card relatively unpeeled, so to speak, and deeper wisdom untapped.

For example:

Those who do the card a day reading, drawing one card, and then sharing their interpretation of the general meaning, and definition of the card. The problem with this is that, let’s say she might draw the Queen of Swords today, July 17th, 20015 and then again October 17th, 2015; both cards will have the same interpretation, and definition copy, pasted, and attached to it. Where’s the mystery in that? Sure, it might “hit home” for some, and be relevant on many levels but the reason for that is mostly likely because the mind gets busy trying to find itself in the prediction. So naturally picking out any card, and posting any interpretation is going to “hit home” for many.  And later in the day, they will unconsciously make their actions fit the prediction of the day, and later say, “Oh my god, that was right on!”Queen+of+Swords

Yes, maybe so, but it could have been so much better!

Here’s another example:

The last time I had a real bona fide reading was Samhain of 2012. Samhain is October 31st or astrologically celebrated November 7,8,or 9th depending on the  year. At this particular time, it was November 7th. Samhain is a time when it’s said the veils between the world’s, the realm of the living, and of spirit are thinnest; when the ancestors can visit, and other ghostly beings too. It is a time we honor the dead, and celebrate the aspect of life we call death. It’s a powerful, mystical, magickal time. With all this thinning of the veils, and magick about from this realm into that of the mystical, all-knowing other side, certainly it was a good time for reading.

A dear Sis-star read for me, outside by the fire, and under the light of the full moon. I absolutely hated the reading. The emotional coloring was all off, and nothing about it made any sense whatsoever. The more she tried to literally define the cards, the worse it was. She was going through a personal transition in her life as well, and I felt at the time that might be adding to the over all color of my reading. Ultimately, by the end of this night, nothing was answered by Spirit. At least, not to my awareness.

I ended up carrying this reading with me into the world of dreams where it showed itself to me again as more of a revelation. Before I stepped out of bed I picked up the cell phone and text another soul sis-star of mine and shared with her my dream. She responded with, “Wow! What a powerful dream! What do you think it means?”

At that time, I didn’t know. But after talking to yet another soul sis-star of mine, who is an excellent guide, teacher. and friend, I was able to discover, and let unfold the ginormous picture; the over all message for my soul from my soul. So ultimately, in the end of all things, it was my sis-tars interpretation of the cards in my original reading for me that didn’t jell for me; the cards however, were right on the money.

This is because mysteries can not be told or shared. They must be experienced, and they reveal themselves to the student or seeker. This includes the Tarot as well. It is easy for even a skilled reader to project themselves into the reading even when they don’t believe they are and/or are trying to often reading, and picking up on what Self or spirit is trying to communicate to the reader vs what is necessary for the querent.

Another reason I rarely have others read for me is because I understand that I am the creator of my visions, my dreams, and I am the map maker of my future in the here, and now. I’ve been given all the tools I need to create my destiny. Having another attempt to read for me, which is actually trying to “tell” me what possibilities are in store for me does nothing to nurture my spiritual growth, and reliance on my own inner wisdom but in fact, if taken to heart, has the potential to throw me off my course.

An essential part of spiritual practice is understanding that it is a path of self exploration and discovery. It is learning how to trust the inner-wisdom that comes explicitly from the heart, and not outside sources of other telling us what is, and what is not, regardless of who it is they say they are, and what they do. The Divine speaks to all of us.

The Tarot is Like an Onion

Every card is like an onion, layered with such deep esoteric meaning just waiting to be discovered. While I think the basic associations are solid, such as, the suite of cups being related to the realm of water which is further associated with intuitive process, matters of the heart, and fluid movement, I do not think the cards themselves are repetitive.  In other words, I do not think that what the nine of pentacles says today will be exactly what it will say tomorrow under different circumstances, and affected by different energies. To read in that fashion is to not to peel back any more layers of that beautiful onion, and reveal the deeper secrets, and mysteries that are waiting to be discovered.

Unfortunately, many of the readers I know and have come into contact with spend more time in their head over intellectualizing the cards, and their meanings interpreting them literally instead of allowing themselves to feel what the card is actually saying, which again goes back to them not peeling back the layers, and having deeper meaning revealed to them. “Those who have eyes, let them see.” Most notably from the bible but it has been said in many ways in different Ancient Mystery Schools.

In other words,those who haven’t surrendered the ego to Divine will not see the deeper mysteries of Tarot or of Spirit.  The Tarot wisdom, as well as the Mysteries in general, is layered like an onion. Those who can not recognize this onion- like quality about the Tarot can not peel back layers of meaning, and reveal more truth underneath. They can not because they operate from their lower self or ego, and this is where their vibrations are concentrated.

Having the same old interpretation time, and time again reveals nothing new to the seeker, querent or even to the Self that is reading. It may be that it is a message the reader needs to hear again, and again because they haven’t quite integrated, absorbed, and put to practical use the message the first several times around, like having the same dream, night after night. They refuse to peel the layers of that mysterious onion back, or perhaps they don’t know how, and see deeper meanings there available to them. For these readers, despite, and because of their mastery of fixed interpretations of the tarot, their intuitive process with Tarot is highly limited.

Or maybe they just don’t like onions.

What it comes down is first understanding is that we all are standing at the edge of an ocean of limitless possibility therefore allowing us an infinite amount of choice in what we think, say and do. Secondly, understanding that with an infinite amount of choice comes equally an infinite amount of consequence, responsibility, and outcome. We can change our minds, and make different choices, hence a different outcome, at any time.

A skilled tarot reader can help predict the outcome of the particular pattern you have set course for your life based on the choices you are making at that time. A highly skilled, and intuitive reader is able look beyond the surface of the images, go far past the assigned definitions of the card, and gently peel back the onion-like layers mystery revealing deeper wisdom that can help you make the best possible choices in the right here and now that create a better outcome for your life.

In the end, remember, you have the power of choice, of unlimited choice no matter what you discover along the way. Ultimately, always follow the wisdom of your heart, not the interpretation of the reader, or the cards. Your heart only knows truth because it isn’t boggled down by intellect, nor does it filter the truth because what’s in the heart is true because the heart is truth. And that’s all you really want to know, isn’t it?

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P.S

I invite you to comment below and tell me what you think?

 

 

8 Pearls Of Light That Guided Me Through Hell

It’s been some time since I’ve been here to this place, and shared any thoughts and random musings about anything at all. Whew! Well let me tell you I’ve been busy moving through this thing in life we call “change”. I thought about writing a tell-all post about what transpired over the last several months but realized that would make for a longer post than I wanted to write. Further, I don’t want to go backwards mentally, emotionally or spiritually.

But– I also need to purge before I can move on and write the really good stuff. And perhaps in my purging process, how I managed to make my light in the middle of this hell might be of use to someone out there going through their own hell. If it helps even one person other than myself then it is worth it.

The Big Move

After living in our house on Schiller Ave in Akron Ohio for over eight and half years, in the middle to late November of last year, my youngest three daughters and I got rid of everything we had, and what we decided to keep we stored in a 5 x7x8 ft U-Box from U-Haul to have shipped to our destination. What we couldn’t fit in there we packed away in a storage bag-unit and put on top of my little black Chevy Cavalier. What didn’t fit in there, we packed inside and on November 17th, we took off for West Palm Beach, Florida where we now live.

Change Is Good. But It Ain’t Easy!

After a stop in Kentucky to stay the night with a dear friend, Ms. Heather, we arrived here in WPB, November 19th, and stayed with family; a father of which I haven’t seen since the first time I ever met him 20 years ago, and his current wife. It’s been an experience to say the least, and one I’m still not fully recovered from as of yet. It didn’t take long to realize that we had arrived in Casa del infierno, aka the house of hell. After the vacation period ended, about two weeks after our arrival, they dropped their masks of happiness, and instead the real faces of the sad, unhappy, and miserable little trolls we were staying with were revealed.

In fairness, it’s difficult enough for anyone staying with other people, family or friends, and having to get used to their way, their lifestyle, their habits, and ideals especially when they don’t mesh with yours. It’s worse when you’re total strangers living in a strangers house and that stranger just happens to be your father.

Add that stress on top of suddenly being immersed into a whole new Spanish culture and way of life with the expectation that we needed to just instantly adapt. Here we were in the house where there was a patriarch; this may be normal for many people but for me, a single mother who has raised five strong, and independent young women without a masculine figure-head at the forefront of our lives, this was a huge adjustment and shock to deal with.

At first it was nice. It is Florida after all! Instead of spending a winter in the ice and snow we were going to spend it in the sun on the beach! That happiness and enthusiasm didn’t last long. Shortly after the masks dropped, the shit began.  But I won’t go into great detail and list every rotten, passive-aggressive thing they did, just the ones that pissed me off the most. Like purposely not stocking the pantry with staples and eating out every day, just to make the message loud and clear, “We are not going to give food to you and your girls.” 

The Issue of The Food And The Divine Blessing of Friendship.

Since the time we arrived in November, and because we were in someone else’s home, regardless that it was my father, I bought food for the house. I bought things that my daughters enjoy but I also watched and saw what Spanish foods my father and his wife like and bought regularly so I tried to contribute that way. Needless to say, this was not appreciated. Since I bought food and put it in the house for everyone, this gave them one less thing to complain about.

By mid-January and only when my father knew that my finances were almost depleted is when my father decided that my daughters and I could make do with nothing and thus, began to take himself, and his wife out to eat every day, or visit her son, and his wife having lunch daily over there, leaving the pantry bone dry in the house. Although I had been hired in at a hospital in the beginning of January, due the scheduling of orientation and other delays, I wasn’t working yet. It was now February. Thank Goddess for a couple good friends in Ohio, my dear friends-like-family, Gwen and Leezette, and one kind acquaintance in California, named Carolina, who knew the situation, stepped up to help me out. Between the three of them they sent me a few hundred dollars to keep food for the girls until I started my new job a few weeks later. Their generosity is immeasurable. It saved our lives. And to them, I am grateful.

Eternally Grateful

Shortly after that I received an unexpected gift in addition to what my friends sent to me; my 401 K savings from my previous job I left in Ohio. That check arrived in perfect timing allowing us to once again, have a soft cushion of security until we started receiving income. I was able to buy food, and other needed things for the girls and I.

Once I bought food for the girls and I, suddenly my father and his wife stopped eating out, and once again were eating back at the house. Guess what food they were eating? The food I bought from money sent to me from friends. And although this provoked my daughters ire, especially in my 19 yr old, Amaris. I told them, “Let them have it. We pick our battles and this is not the one we want to fight. Not yet.”

Another blessing was Amaris started her job at a restaurant in late January and was making very decent tips, anywhere from $70 to $150 a night. It was that money that she put in an envelope named “Argante Fund” –this was not her money, she said, but ours, as a family. We needed to do with what we had to to keep from having to deal with them. Our uniforms, shoes, and anything else we needed was bought with that “Argante Fund” money. My father and his wife saw us coming and going with items, clothes (uniforms) as well as Amaris would bring food home at night when she left the restaurant and complained to their border that we had “all this money” and didn’t give them even a little bit.

Why would we? We needed “all that money” to do what we had to do, and to get out of that house. And had he not been such an asshole, maybe I might have offered to give him something out of respect. But he lost any respect I might have pretended to have when he chose to treat my daughters and me the way he did. My only mission was to get out of that house while keeping my peace of mind, and not turn into a person like them.

We stopped buying food and putting in the house. If we did buy food, non-perishables, they were left in our trunk of the car as storage and taken out when needed, or left in our small, cramped shared bedroom. My girls and I, we were and still are a team. They couldn’t break our spirit, no matter how hard they tried.

They didn’t like that at all.

Yeah, It Was Hell

It went from the food thing to turning off the central air units, claiming we broke it because we went in and out of the house, to turning off the washing machine from the inside the washer itself so we couldn’t use it to wash not even our work clothes; to not speaking to us for months, or introducing us to company or other family;  to pulling a fuse for the ceiling fan, turning off the internet so my daughter couldn’t do schoolwork, to hiding remote controls to televisions telling my girls what they could and could not watch in that house, to limiting our use of water in the shower.

Nothing was ever said about any of this as they did it. Can we say passive-aggressive? They just did it and acted as if they did nothing at all and if confronted with it, would absolutely deny it 100%. They were guiltless and it was everyone else who did them wrong. My father, the martyr, who gives his heart and soul to people and everyone else just shits on him!

Poor, poor daddy. Yeah, right. pfft!

So How Did I Deal With It All?

Obviously it wasn’t easy at all. There were many, many days I cried, and thought, “Why did I bring my daughters and I to this nightmare?!” But those were temporary lapses of reason. Once I cried it was O.K. I would let common sense, and the teachings of my Spirit guide me on how to deal with it all. When I thought of what it was that I did that helped me most, it came down to 8 things I did on the regular. These things were my guiding lights through the darkness.

1. Don’t Take Anything Personally
Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their own dream. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won’t be the victim of needless suffering.”

*This is the second agreement of The Four Agreements by don Miguel Luiz, and the one that was most important, and challenging to me during this time which is why I share it here now.

First I tried very hard not to take any of this personal because I could see that they are both just sad, lonely, miserable people and everything they do is not about other people but about themselves. Despite everything they did, I tried very hard to see the Divinity in them, for after all, we are made up celestial DNA, star-borne we all are so there has to be some good in them somewhere. I tried to find it and focus on that.

It was challenging, it was difficult and almost impossible. For when you caught a glimmer of radiant starlight within them, it was over taken by the black soul-sucking hole like energy that surrounds them. Their negativity is larger than who they are, and so much so you almost want to feel pity for them, and you probably would if you weren’t too busy getting out of their way so your own soul wasn’t sucked up their vortex of toxicity.

I told myself over and over this old adage, “This too shall pass.” And it did. It seemed like a lifetime before it did but it did pass because all things come, and all things go. This was no different.

2) Prayer

When you’re stuck in a tunnel of suffocating darkness, you must try to remember that no matter what, there is light at the end of that tunnel even if you don’t see it. In the meantime, until you see that light, you must create your own to guide your way. How do you do this? I did it through prayer, and lots of it.

I prayed for the light of love to be with my daughters and I, to fill the house, and my father and his wife’s withered, and shriveled up blackened hearts with the love they so desperately need. It was hard to pray for the best for them when it seemed all they wanted was the worst for us but I allowed the wisdom of my heart to guide me, to show me the way, and I followed. Ego be damned!

Prayer became my best friend. The more shit my father and his wife dealt out the harder I prayed for goodness and tranquility to wash over the situation, the house and for love to fill their withering, black hearts. It would have been easy to wish them hell but I knew they were already suffering. No person who isn’t suffering and miserable would ever act towards their own family the way my father and his wife acted towards us.

3) Focus Only On The Positive

You must remember to focus only on that which is positive and good. The law of attraction is here at work so whatever you focus on you will receive more of. This is where strength, determination and courage are important allies that will carry you through. Nothing is so important that costs you your soul.  I fell back on everything I knew, all of my teachings, and understanding of the law of attraction. I knew if I was going to create a place of peace and light I needed to focus on that peace and light, I needed to be that peace and light, even if that light was a fire at times that burned intensely, as long as that fire pushed us forward that’s all that mattered.

4) Practice Gratitude

When it seems the worst is when we must be the most grateful. When we feel like we have nothing else to give is when we must reach deep within and find an ounce of gratitude and let that lead us. Gratitude comes from the heart, it can’t be faked, and it is the brightest light that will lead us out from the dark into our own.

meesheeWhen things were bad, which was almost everyday, I would wake up and see my girls, and with an open heart full of love and gratitude I’d give thanks I had them with me, and they were safe, and healthy. Gratitude. I would get up, go outside and sit at the table with my phone, my notebook and a pen, often greeted by the neighborhood kitten called Meeshee. Gratitude.

I’d take time to notice my surroundings, and everything around me; the beautiful palm tree that had plenty of giant coconuts ready to fall; the awesome mango tree that was ripe, and heavy with juicy fruit, ready to give to the receiver. The pineapple and wild strawberry growing in the yard, and all of my step-mother’s incredible lush green aloe plants and tropical flowers.  I noticed the birds singing and the little lizards and gecko running about or crawling on my chair. I would look out and up and see the small puffs of transparent white clouds that dotted the sunny, blue clear skies. This is what I focused on. Gratitude.

Gratitude Is Everything

Despite everything else that was going on, the reality was that we were safe, dry, we had a place to stay, a roof over our head, a warm, decent bed to sleep in. All four of us were working and making money to move out of there. We were not out on the street, homeless, begging for a right to a crust of bread or a bottle of water; we had that and more. So we had to deal with some pretty messed up things along the way, the fact is it wasn’t the worst I’d ever experienced. In fact, it was more of major annoyance than anything, and I knew it wasn’t going to last forever. And it didn’t. This is what I focused on. Gratitude. I continued to create my light by focusing on that which was good, and for everything I could be grateful for.

5) Venting

A big saving grace was having someone to talk to about all of this that was going on. I have a few good friends who, although were all back in Ohio, and elsewhere, they were there for me holding space, letting me vent, curse, holler and work this out. It was heavy talking to me at times because the situation we were in was heavy, suffocating, and toxic. But my friends, the ones that truly matter, and love me kept holding space for me, they were there for me to let me vent, to let me work it out in whatever way I could no matter how difficult, and heavy things may have been. Especially my sister-priestess, Soul-Sister Amanda. She was my rock. I love them all more than they know. Gratitude. 

6)Laughter

The moment something bad happened, instinctively we want to cuss, yell or cry out, “Damn it!” or some other colorful eff word. I decided to try to train myself to react by automatically thinking of everything and anything I could be grateful (Gratitude)for, or even laugh about. It was hard but it became easier as I kept on trying. And in the trying took my focus from whatever was going on and into the moment of my trying. That was the only thing I focused on and it saved me many, many times. And yes, there were times when things were so bad, and so stupid the only thing I could do was laugh. Laughter is good for the mind, body, and soul.

7) Beach Therapy

“The cure for anything is salt water – sweat, tears, or the sea.”

–Isak Dinesen

And of course, there’s was beach therapy. Lots of wonderful and healing beach therapy.  There were many days I went and sat on the beach, and stared out for what seemed like thousands of miles while I dug my toes in the sand, and just watched the waves come crashing in. I would mentally, and sometimes physically, send my sorrows back out letting the ocean mama take it all back into her, to be renewed again. Not everyone has a beach to run off too, in fact, before we moved here to Florida we didn’t have a beach to run off to either but we did have beautiful park systems with a river running through it. If you aren’t lucky enough to have a river near by, there is always your bath tub. Create a serene environment, adding sea salt or epsom salt to your bath, light candles, burn relaxing incense, calming reiki or jazz music, or whatever relaxes you and just. let. go.

beach8) Forgiveness

Forgiveness is something you do for yourself, for your soul not someone else. Forgiving someone doesn’t mean you condone the objectionable behavior, and hurtful actions towards you. It does mean, however, that you will not be held prisoner by your own angry, and hurt emotions so you forgive and let live and let go.

And so every time the pettiness of my father began to affect us, I forgave. When I wanted to go ballistic, scream, and yell, I forgave with same intensity that I was stressed.

I remembered to try not to take it personal, to find something positive to focus on, and to look around me wherever I was then, and be grateful. Only in the center of my gratitude could I find the place inside my heart to forgive. And I forgave. 

And then I forgot. I forgot about the problems, the house, and most importantly, I forgot about them!

The Outcome

This is how dealt with and survived hell in that house. As of May 14th, we officially moved into our own condo, and cut off all communications with my father, his wife, and the rest of his family. Since then my daughters and I have been pretty much at peace. The distance between my father and I is about as far as it ever was when I lived in Ohio, over a thousand miles away, and worlds apart. I have no regrets, and I am content with that.

We are moving forward in a positive way, and we can honestly say we are going to give Florida a chance, from the place we are now, and not the place we were when we first arrived. We are living in Florida now when before we were just staying here. Now we can be open to see what all it has to offer us without the stress, and negativity of being in the toxic environment of my father’s house.

Whatever happens, I have my three beautiful, intelligent and courageous  daughters, and together we’ll get through anything.  One of the most important confirmations I gained from this experience among the many lessons is that we, my daughters and I, have always been the close and loving family we needed. Now we are only closer.  How much more blessed can we be?!

Until next time,

Love, Beauty & Magick,

P.S

Thank you for reading. If you liked it, please share it! I invite to leave comments and feedback below as well. Thank you so much.

 

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Cleaning Out The Attic

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How I wish I could get inside my brain, to clean and organize it as easily as I do my house. First, I’d take out the trash – all those negative thoughts that get in the way and keep me from doing my best work.
I’d bag up all those old hand -me- down ideas that clutter up my brain and don’t fit me anymore. I’d suck up the cobwebs of less important thoughts so I could see my important ideas more clearly. I’d scrub the floor of complacency, allowing my passions to shine through. I’d wash the windows into my heart and soul so they could speak to me more openly. I’d analyze what I wanted to say and organize it into neat bundles. And finally,  I’d decorate with pictures of good times, encouraging words, and smiles.
~ Elaine Luddy Klonicki

Only Love. That’s All.

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 “The heart has its reasons which reason knows not.” ―Blaise Pascal

Seasons come and seasons go and several seasons of silence have come and went since I’ve taken a moment to share the whisperings of my soul. It’s not that I haven’t  been listening to the wisdom that my soul shares with me but rather that I wasn’t ready to share it. I wrote this piece about 8 or 9 months ago inspired by a journey of Enchanted Love I found myself falling in only a year earlier before that.

Soul Twins

Soul Twins

I was swirling and swooshing in an ocean of cosmic energy this Enchanted Love created at the point of when I was moved to initially write this. I tried to share it then but the knowing within me wouldn’t allow it. So I didn’t. I read it over and I just knew it wasn’t time to share. I realized I had written it all for me. Whether I wanted it or not, I definitely needed it to take the time to contemplate it, understand it, integrate and assimilate the wisdom my soul had to share with me. Now though, although I am still floating in this great fantastic sea of Enchanted Love, (never to see dry land again!) I feel moved to share with you here, the whisperings of my soul.

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The experience that led me to write on this topic in the first place has been and continues to be a deeply profound, mystical and an intricately delicate unfolding discovery on a soul level.  Earlier this month, after two-in-a-half years since it all began, I finally came face to face in-the-flesh with the One, my Enchanted Lover, and that experience has forged an understanding into my being, seared an eternal knowing on my heart that has forever changed me for the better. It is this understanding and knowing, far beyond romantic love, that is my own and that I’m sharing with all of you Radiant Souls here. Naturally of course, with Love.

 

This Thing Called Love. What Is It?

 

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I have never thought that I would write a post asking the question “What is Love?”  Why would I want to? Our greatest minds and philosophers through the ages have pondered and attempted to answer or simply contemplated and shared their thoughts and views on perhaps one of the greatest questions in life so really, why would I want to add my little insignificant thirteen cents into the mix?

Because like so many of us, love has captured, entranced and spellbound me too. I want to share what my discovery and understanding of love in general, especially romantic love, is at this point in my journey has revealed to me so far.

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I know there are people who want love so much so they are willing to do anything to get it. And I mean anything, even depreciating themselves just to touch it. Yet, there are others who don’t believe love would come to them if they drew Love a map to their heart and gave Her a flashlight to find her way in the dark! And then there are those who are as afraid of opening their heart to Love as most of us are afraid of death. Death can come at any time at any place and there is not stopping it.  And yet Love is something many people believe they can manipulate, control even wish for and make happen.

How wrong they are!

So then, what is love? The reality is no one really knows for sure but everyone thinks they have a clue. Yet the moment you try to define it, it becomes limited, at least how it will manifest itself and be recognized by the person setting the limits. Love is a constant indescribable force but if you think you know what it is and it presents itself to you in some other way not expected, it can really knock you off your feet!

Love-Fire

“Love is the heartbeat of the universe, the glue, the thread, fabric, and force that holds it all together. Love is the eternal. The eternal is love. Nothing lasts forever except that which is eternal, and that is Love.”

My experience and observations have led me to my current belief, whether or not we experience love is according to our own views, ideas, and perceptions of it. I think that perhaps it’s true, that maybe for many of us who have been waiting, looking and wanting love desperately that love may have been (and still may be) in our face for some time but because our ideas of what we think and believe love to be has caused us to miss the magic carpet ride. How so? Because  love may have walked right in, tapped us on the shoulder and whispered our name but because of the expectations and ideas we hold to what we believe love is, we don’t recognize the current attire  love may be wearing because we expect it to be wearing a different pair of shoes, jacket, and tie. Maybe even driving a Porsche. unexpectedLove

We must let go of our ideas of what we think and believe “love is” because Love is like God. Indescribable. Limitless. Unfathomable on the whole of everything. Everywhere and no one place at once; uncontrollable, can not be captured but only given and received; touches lives and changes everything. Infinite, eternal, beyond total comprehension.

“Love is God”

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But we know when we finally awaken to the experience of it. We know when love has touched the center of our being. And we are changed forever.

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Death & Love

It’s believed by some, myself included, that death is not an end, but rather it is the deepest consciousness of the soul. To experience the deepest of all consciousness we leave the physical world behind

Love, however, is a consciousness experienced by the living. But Love is the eternal therefore, I questioned,  it must be experienced in death as well. This so-called deepest of consciousnesses is the final mystery and experience that takes place only when we travel through the corridors of the conscious mind, passing through the gateway from waking consciousness to the vast nothingness on the other side we call death. But this is not the end. Only a new beginning.

Light Of Love

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Thinking of this It made me think of all the people who’ve had near-death experiences and almost all of them who’ve had this experience say they felt like they were surrounded in this brilliant, white light and were overwhelmed with a feeling of such intense LOVE  it was indescribable to them! Ecstasy and bliss beyond incredible and more amazing than anything they ever felt in the waking conscious physical world.

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This perplexed me and yet caused me to pause and consider this for a while.  I began to think then that perhaps the deepest of all consciousness is not death but Love. Therefore making the light in which was seen, felt and experienced by those who had a near-death experience is Love and it is this Love that is only reached beyond the consciousness of death. Therefore making Love the deepest of the deep of all consciousness.  It is a total and complete return to our origin: Love.

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“Love is the ultimate force and breath of creation, the fabric and thread that weaves the entire universe, Death is then but a doorway that leads to the deepest of all consciousness and that is Love. From Love we are born and to Love we will return because Love is all there is.”

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When I look at it from this perspective, death is not an end but a gateway to the beginning of the soul’s most incredible experience of Love in the continuum, the blissful happily ever after. Although the physical, conscious experience of love appears to end, the experience has only deepened to unknowable depths and lives on in eternity, in forever.

Transcending Love

So my final-for-now thought of love is this:

Love transcends all things; time, space, race, distance and age. Love is the needle, the thread and the weaver that weaves the fabric from which all hearts are made. Love is the fabric of the universe.

“Love is a permeating light flowing everywhere, in everything and everything is Love, therefore no one is without love but rather always in-love, surrounded by Love because Love is all there is.”

There is nothing that exists outside the realm of this cosmic, ever unfolding and flowing forth universe which is Love in and of itself, a constant giving, birthing and bursting forth and changing everything it touches, therefore changing itself. There is nothing to compare it to because it is all there is. Only Love.

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And the great mystery is that Love is all there is.
Only Love.

 

~ May the wisdom of my soul resonate and speak to you on some level. May it give you a bit of hope, some peace but most of all, shine a light on you to remind you that you are never without Love. Ever.

In Love, Beauty, and Truth,

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