My Imaginary Life as a Painter

This week, I started the The Artists Way, and one of my first assignments was called “Imaginary Lives”. Part 1 of this exercise was to think of five imaginary lives. What would I do (career wise) if I was not doing what I do now?

The first things that came to my mind were:

  • Pop singer
  • Astrologist
  • Writer
  • Painter
  • Vegetable Farmer

The vegetable farmer is weird, I know. I have always thought that maybe in a past life, I was a vegetable farmer. I get up early and go to bed early, like a farmer, even though I live in the city that never sleeps. I love vegetables and I am not a huge fan of animals. I am not sure if I really want to GROW vegetables, but this popped in to my head so on a subconscious level, maybe I do!

Part 2 of this exercise was to actually DO something related to one of these lives during the week. At first I thought I had to do ALL of them and I was like F&^*!!! I don’t have time for that. But just one, I thought I could manage.

I thought about corralling someone to go sing karaoke with me but I had a super busy week so I just couldn’t swing it.

Astrologer and writer were too easy because I am already doing both of those on a regular basis. (I know I haven’t written much about astrology yet, but I will!)

Painter came to mind because I had just seen a movie where a woman was painting and I thought “that looks like such a relaxing way to spend the day.” Growing up, I used to do paint-by-numbers all the time. I liked it because it had structure to it (open this paint color and paint where you see this number) but was also kind of creative. But paint-by-numbers take a really long time. You have to paint one color at a time and wait for it to dry. Its a process. (I should also note that my mother was a painter. I don’t remember her being particularly relaxed or un-relaxed about it but she made the most beautiful paintings. They far surpassed my paint-by-numbers of course, but she never rubbed my nose in it. Thanks mom!)

The plan at this point was to either paint or buy a plant.

I googled “tiny paint-by-number” and I found this! A super tiny Bob Ross paint by numbers kit. Score!!!! (This box fits in my hand. It’s tiny.)

The website said was in stock at my local Barnes & Noble so I ran out in the freezing cold to pick it up. If you haven’t been to an actual bookstore recently, you might not remember how hard it is to find something there. It is A LOT easier to order stuff online. But, I like to “buy local” when I can, and I was in a rush. I stopped at three information booths that steered me in the wrong direction. When I asked guy #4 at Barnes & Noble, he told me that he had wanted a Bob Ross bobblehead, and although he knew it was in stock, even HE could not find it in the store, so he ordered it on-line. (True story). BUT since his personal failed quest, he had one more idea of a place he hadn’t checked, and we found it. If you want one (and after you see how amazing mine turned out, you might), check the “spinner” near the check out isle at your local Barnes & Noble. (You’re welcome.)

Below, you can see all of the supplies that come with the “Bob Ross by the Numbers” kit: three super tiny “canvases”, paint, a brush, instructions, and an easel (to display your art on your desk when its finished).

When I read the instructions, I learned that I was going to ,have to mix my own colors. I panicked a little bit. This was supposed to be an easy, quick slam dunk. I was tired and had a headache and that just seemed hard. But I always do my homework and as one of my inspirational heroes Glennon Doyle says “we can do hard things”, so I pressed on.

My first attempt was the actual picture of Bob Ross painting. I did have some issues with the color mixing (Bob’s hair should be a little darker and the sky should be a little lighter) but it’s not too bad, it really WAS relaxing!

I was pretty sure I could so better so I took on one more painting (and miraculously my headache was gone!) I think painting #2 is kind of a masterpiece, don’t you think? Have you ever seen a more beautiful 3 inch by 2 inch painting? Are you not impressed with the dark and light purples I had to mix on my own using blue, red, and white? And what about the various shades of green? FYI, I learned from experience that to get dark green, you should mix in dark blue, not black. (Again, you are welcome for all of the knowledge I am sharing with you today.)

I am definitely happy that I went the extra mile to complete my assignment this week. I may seem like a small thing (no pun intended), but it felt so good to tune out and use my brain in a different way for a few hours. I had a long list of stuff I wanted to do this weekend, but I made the time for this creative endeavor and it was relaxing and fun! I impressed myself with my creative skills, and I think mixing my own colors counts as leaving my paint-by-number comfort zone, for sure.

The bonus of this activity was that it killed two birds with one stone. As part of the Artists Way, I also have to do an artist date every week. An artists date is “a block of time where you are committed to nurturing your creative consciousness.” Done and done. I do like to be efficient!

My Year of Creativity is off to a great start!

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2019: The Year of…..

I decided to keep it simple this year.  I am going with a one-word theme.

I debated setting another goal to do a set number of specific things and was (of course) obsessing over how many things and what exactly those things would be. And then last week, the idea of having a one-word theme was presented to me.

This is not a new idea, but it was a new idea to me and I loved it because it was simple. And I don’t want to keep doing the same old “new” things. I need to innovate!

And…..I already knew what my word would be.

I had been thinking a lot about what I wanted to focus on in 2019.  I want writing to be a big part of it, but I have other ideas.  I recently realized that I have a lot of ideas that I don’t pursue. I let them float through my head while I am busy checking off meaningless stuff on my to do list and I often just forget about them.  Or sometimes they keep coming back to me and I make excuses not to pursue them.  Then I sit around saying “I don’t know what I want to do with my life and I have no ideas.” Sigh.

At the end of 2017, I read Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert.  I loved that book and its been milling around in the back of my mind with all of those ideas. The story from the book that stayed with me most vividly was one she told about this glimmer of an idea she had that she wanted a garden. And she didn’t just dismiss it (like I have many times with the plant wall I keep thinking about) but she ran with it. Then she got interested in learning about the flowers and she ran with that!  And THAT turned in to a book.

“The universe buries strange jewels deep within us all, and then stands back to see if we can find them.  The hunt to uncover those jewels – that’s creative living.” – Elizabeth Gilbert, Big Magic

This idea of following your curiosity, reminds me of Alice in Wonderland, I have loved Alice in Wonderland since I was a little girl. Now I realize she has been calling me to follow my curiosity and uncover the hidden jewels.

“Do you have the courage to bring forth the treasures that are hidden within you?”  – Elizabeth Gilbert, Big Magic

Yes!!!!  I want to find those treasures and create amazing things because it will be fun!!!  (Extra bonus points if I can inspire other people to do the same!!)

I recently stumbled on the Big Magic podcast and listened to the Brene Brown episode.  She basically told me that I have no choice but to start creating more things. Here is what Brene said to me last week while I was walking around the East Village:

“The only unique contribution we make in this world will be born of creativity.”

“Creativity is soul work. It’s not about what we do, it’s about who we are.”

So yeah, I gotta get on this.

First, I must start writing down the ideas that come to my head so I don’t forget them. Then I need to take inspired action on the ones that speak to me the loudest. Then I will start creating things. Some of those things I will share, and some will just be for me. Some of those things will be writing and some of them will be other cool stuff.  Some of it might not end up being that cool or important, and that’s OK.

“You are not required to save the world with your creativity.”  –– Elizabeth Gilbert, Big Magic

In case you have not figured it out yet, my word for 2019 is CREATIVITY. 

I am going to follow my curiosity and create things out of the ideas that I am no longer going to ignore.  I am not going to do a specific number of things. I am just going to do stuff. Maybe it will be one HUGE creative project and maybe it will be 100.  Who knows? Did Alice have any idea what she was getting in to?

I am going to kick the year off with the The Artist’s Way.  For those who are not in the know, The Artist’s Way, is a “12-week program of exercises and explorations to loosen up one’s artistic self.” (My creativity hero, Elizabeth Gilbert, is a huge fan)

I am on my way to being loose and even MORE artistic!

Welcome to my #YearofCreativity.  Let’s see how this goes!

PS: The artwork above is a print I bought on Amazon from Lone Star Art. You can find it here.

2018 Year in Review

2018I started my year with a complicated plan to “sort of” continue my New Things from 2017 but with the intention to focus more on quality over quantity. You can read the details here but essentially, I had dialed it back to only 18 new things that had to involve one of my five goals for the year: Fun, Creativity, Connection, Meaning, Nature. (I added “leaving my Comfort Zone” later as a sixth goal, primarily so I could count new thing #1 which ended up not being as fun as I thought it would be.) 

I soon regretted this plan because I felt like I was being lazy. Well, my higher self does not let me be lazy for too long.  In April, I dialed things back up and decided to go on a pilgrimage to find my life’s purpose.  That decision changed the course of my year (and probably my life) and got me back on track with the trajectory I set in motion in 2017.  Phew!

My life expanded in 2018.  I am not the same person I was when the year started.  I would say that counts as #quality.

I did 40 new things. Not too shabby. When I sat down to review the list, I realized I had at least five that I never shared!!! See the list here.

I quit therapy after 20 years. There were a few “ah ha” moments in 2018 that led to that decision.  I am a huge fan of therapy.  I needed it and I healed and grew a lot from it.  I think most people would benefit from a good therapist.  But I realized this year that I have the tools I need to carry on the rest of the way without that relationship. No regrets so far. I LOVE having my Saturday mornings back.  #leavingmycomfortzone

I embarked on a spiritual journey. I didn’t even realize that was happening. I sort of knew I was signing on to work with a spiritual energy healer when I decided to go on the pilgrimage, but I ignored that part. I was like “yeah, we’ll see what’s up with that, but I really just want to solve this thing eating away at me that I should be doing SOMETHING but I have no idea what”.  Little did I realize that that THING eating away at me is the Universe sending me messages that I have been ignoring. I am learning (slowly, and sometimes still reluctantly) to believe those messages and pay attention to them. Some of this “spiritual stuff” still does not resonate with me, but some if it is like WHAAAATTT??? That is amazing!!! Much more to come on all of this, I am sure.  #meaning

I made amazing new connections. I have a tribe of new fabulous women friends who are also on this spiritual journey with me that I have learned so much from. Dating went in an interesting direction this year. I manifested more cookies than kale (this post will explain what I mean by that) but the cookies were fun I have learned from those connections, too. #connection #fun

It was a big family year. I had all of my nieces and nephew together more than once which was so much fun. I learned about past lives with my siblings (wow!) and spent quality time with all of my parents. (This is extra challenging because they are double divorced and spread up and down the East Coast. I spend a lot of time on Amtrak) There were some intense family moments as well, but you know what they say (and by they, I mean the Buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hanh)…No Mud No Lotus.  #connection #fun #meaning

I thought I found my life’s purpose, twice, and was then like…hmmm…maybe this isn’t exactly it.  This fall, I realized (with the help of my new spiritual friends and various podcasts) that this path I am on IS my life’s purpose. Learning, sharing, growing, paying attention and helping other people to learn, grow, share, and pay attention. That’s it. Don’t try so hard. Don’t think so much. Have fun. Roll with it. Trust the process. The process IS the thing. (Remind me to come back and read this when I forget, again, that the process IS the thing.) #meaning

The Garden of Eden

I didn’t write as much as I wanted to, but I did churn out 13 posts this year. I took a poetry class.  I saw a couple of interesting plays. I went to a cool event about music and math. I had the Garden of Eden painted on my body. I started using more emojis 🦄 🌈. But overall, 2018 was a little bit weak on #creativity 

Nature was the category that got the least attention in 2018.  My pilgrimage was hard core on nature. I did Butoh in the rain. We did a healing in a field full of sheep. I stared at flowers and trees for longer periods of time than I thought possible. I hiked the Tor, immersed myself in the healing pool of a sacred spring, tried to talk to trees, and hung out with a lot of prehistoric rocks.  Since then I made one trip to the New York Botanical Garden but otherwise my life has been mostly #nature free. This is another area for improvement.

All in all, 2018 pretty much kicked ass. I was sick more than I would like, so there are some things that need to be tweaked, but I went pretty hard.  I chose 18 for this year because it represented the Hebrew word Chai which represents being alive. I took my life to a new level this year and definitely felt alive! I chose the name Genesis when I was on my pilgrimage which represents beginnings. This year was the beginning of so many things. I look forward to what will unfold in 2019 and beyond. More on that soon….

Wardrobe Upgrade

I hate shopping for clothes.  I don’t need a Kardashian closet of clothes, but when I leave my apartment, I want to feel good in what I am wearing.  I have been working from home a lot the past few years so I have spent most of my time in yoga pants and t-shirts while the rest of my wardrobe has not gotten much attention. Every time I opened my closet recently, I have been faced with stuff I didn’t like any more or didn’t really fit right or I was just tired of wearing.

With everything else going on in the world right now, this is clearly not a REAL problem. But when you are trying to push yourself to spend more time out in the world, it helps if you can feel amazing when you walk out the door.

On my pilgrimage to the UK, I met a woman who was starting a business helping people clear out their closets and fill them with clothes they actually love.  I was tempted to work with her but it seemed extravagant to hire someone to help me buy clothes. But when I talked with Chris more about what she does, I realized it was so much more than just “going shopping.” I really loved the idea of how she “curates closets” so I signed on as a client.  And here is how it went….

We started with a creative process to understand what I like and how I want to feel in my clothes. I filled out a questionnaire with questions like “What images come to mind that represent how you want to feel in my clothes”, “Who are your style icons?”, “What are your favorite body parts”?  Chris used the questionnaire to pull together images from the internet of my style icons in outfits that might interest me. I was initially skeptical about this questionnaire, but it was really amazing to see how Chris used those answers to bring wardrobe ideas to life! (See below!!) Chris is a professional costume designer and wardrobe stylist. She has spent years designing and shopping for TV and movie characters.  For her personal clients she is dressing them for the part they most want to play – their true, authentic and best selves.  (My style icons were used as examples, but the end result was a mix that is uniquely me.)

Style Icons

We went through the images and some were spot on and a few were rejected. As you can see illustrated above, my style icons are Jennifer Aniston and Gloria Steinham (classic, simple, and on trend) with just a touch of Cher (sexy and sparkly).  Chris came over for our second session with a story board of my style icons and lots of inspiration for cool clothes that I would love to own.  We used it as our starting point for shopping, but now I also have this beautiful style book that I can refer to when I shop in the future.

Step two of the process was closet clearing.  We took a full day and I tried on every single piece of clothing that I own. We decided what to keep and what to donate. If I wasn’t sure what I wanted to keep or toss, Chris would point out my body language and expression and help me make the right choice. We ended up with three bags of clothes and shoes to donate.  There was also some Reiki thrown in because Chris is one of my new spiritual friends. (This part is completely optional but highly recommended.)

The other amazing thing that happened when we went through my closet is that Chris helped me alter quite a few things that I was not wearing because they did just didn’t fit right.  Chris fitted them for me on the spot (with my collection of safety pins I never thought I would use) so all I had to do was drop them off and tell the tailor to make the changes.  She fixed another dress with double sided tape and removed buttons on a sweater that we decided would  better off without them.  We found combinations of things I would not have thought to wear together and identified some simple things to buy that would fix some other wardrobe issues (like this amazing body suit from Free People that I can now wear under three different tops that I wasn’t wearing because I didn’t have the right thing to wear under them! See results below.)

Body Suit

And this was all before we even spent one day shopping!

Next up was our first shopping trip just to explore what could be fun and help me think out of the wardrobe box!  We went to a popular thrift store in NYC, not with the intent to actually BUY anything but try things on and maybe bring out my Cher  side! It worked!  We had a lot of fun and I unexpectedly came home with this crazy rainbow unicorn dress.  I am not sure where or when I will wear it but I love it and I am sure Cher would too (and it only cost $16.)

Rainbow Unicorn

We had three more sessions of hard core shopping.  Shopping with Chris was a lot more fun than shopping by myself.  She loves the thrill of the hunt so she went through the racks looking for things that aligned to our storyboard and our list of what I needed to compliment what I already have.  I just followed her around and said…yes, no, maybe?  She encouraged me to try things on I might not otherwise try and gave honest feedback on what worked and what didn’t.  She was incredibly patient with me as I analyzed the pros and cons of every piece. Can I wear it with multiple different things? Is it comfortable? Do I have somewhere to wear it? Do I really like it?  Will I like it in a few months? Will I be hot? Do I have something to layer it with? (this is what its like to be in my head on a shopping trip!)

I ended up with so many beautiful things that I never would have taken the time to find on my own (see a sub-set below.) I learned which floor to hit at Bloomingdale’s on future solo shopping trips.  I have at least one wardrobe piece that reminds me of each of my style icons.  I donated a ton of stuff that someone else will wear and love and will no longer sit in my closet unused.  I fixed a bunch of wardrobe issues with clothes I already own. And I can no longer use the excuse that I don’t have anything to wear to keep me from leaving my house.

Wardrobe Upgrade 2

We all want to feel good and look good.  When I am wearing something that makes me feel amazing I give off a different energy than when I am wearing something that makes me feel blah.  I am more likely to smile at strangers and send out positive vibes which contributes to a more positive world.  This is why Chris does the work she does (she says it much more eloquently than I do) and why I decided I wanted her to help me upgrade my wardrobe.  And I am very happy that I did!

If you live in NYC and need a wardrobe overhaul and want some help to make that happen, I highly recommend getting your closed curated by my friend Chris Rumery!  (Find her at chrisrumery.com)

 

The Universe Has My Back

Things just keep happening.  So many things that I want to write about! But by the time I sit down to do it, I don’t even know where to start because there is so much!!

You might just have to wait until I write my first book.  Although I have not been writing all that much, I have come up with a working title for this future book:

“A Recovering TVaholic Finally Discovers her True Piscean Nature”

PiscesDrawing4This working title was inspired by the astrology class I am taking.  I was reminded that Pisceans are supposed to have the deepest connection to spirit and are usually healers, poets, dreamers, musicians, and visionaries.  I studied computer science and got an MBA.  My feet are solidly on the ground.  I live inside the box.  I get shit done.  I am practical.  I am the opposite of a visionary.  I am the one who pokes holes in the crazy visionary ideas people come up with!!

I have learned that astrology is complicated and it’s not all about your sun sign. There was a lot happening in the sky when we popped in to the world and it all contributes to who we are. (or its all nonsense, but let’s assume its not, because that’s way more fun!)

But I also know that all of this Pisces stuff is inside me and it’s part of my purpose to tap in to it more.

Let’s not forget that I did play bass guitar in an all women’s rock band (briefly) with my friends from college (MUSICIAN!)  And I also recently wrote this kick ass poem (POET!)

And…… THE UNIVERSE HAS ACTUALLY STARTED TALKING TO ME!!! This might sound a little crazy but here is the story.

This week, I was reading The Universe Has Your Back (which is the kind of thing people on a spiritual journey do) and Gabby said that I can choose a sign for the Universe to use to send me a message. When I want to confirm that I am on the right path or making the right decision, I can just ask the Universe to show me this sign.

I knew immediately when I read this that my sign was an elephant. I have no special relationship with elephants. I saw quite a few on safari last year, and they were beautiful and amazing, but they had no deep impact on me (that I was aware of.) But LAST week, I did ask my spirit guides to talk to me for the first time ever and they sent me the image of elephant.  I still don’t know why. (It’s kind of like the journeying pickle.) But they showed me an elephant. They also sent me on a mission to find a Fleetwood Mac song sung my Christine McVie.  True story.  I really wanted it to be “You Make Lovin’ Fun,” but I think they were sending me “Sweet Little Lies.” And I think that meant that someone in my life was not being completely truthful.  This has yet to be confirmed, but I can assure you I am paying close attention!

My spirit guides have been silent since the elephant/Fleetwood Mac incident, but after a rough week, struggling with a difficult decision, I decided to ask the Universe if I was making the right call.  I said, “Universe, if I am doing the right thing, please show me an elephant.”

Then I went shopping.  And I bought a dress with rainbows and unicorns on it.  And it was a fun day of shopping, but there were no elephants.  And I was wishing I had picked the unicorn as my sign, but I hadn’t.

When I got home, I hung up my rainbow unicorn dress and went on line to find a new lamp because mine had died earlier that day and I was in the dark. I was scrolling through Amazon, checking out lamps, and there it was. Elephant Night Light

An elephant night light.

An elephant night light is not a “thing”.  One does not run in to elephants while searching for lamps. But there it was. My elephant.

And in less than 24 hours after that, I saw two more elephants!  I stumbled on an elephant charm while browsing necklaces online and then I saw an elephant birthday card at Papyrus!

The Universe has my Back!!!

The Universe (and all of the elephants) have confirmed that I made the right decision this week and that I am on the right path.  And this is good news for you if you are looking forward to my book, because my Pisces is starting to show!

PS: OK, so it’s possible that elephants might just be everywhere and I never noticed it before, but I choose to believe that the Universe has my back. You can believe whatever you want.

PSS: What’s also super weird is that when I went to find the specific elephant night light that the Universe sent me to include a nice picture with this post, I could not find it anywhere on Amazon.  It no longer exists on the internet!!!!  Weird a.f.!!! I did snap a picture of the O.E. (original elephant.) Here he is. Spiritual proof on my phone.

Elephant Night Light - Original

 

My First Shamanic Journey

I had my first shamanic journeying session a couple of weeks ago.  I decided to journey because my astrology/natal chart reading uncovered that I have some past life karma in my houses of family and committed partnerships that I am apparently working through in this lifetime. I am a super curious person and these are definitely areas of my life that have some angst,  so when my friend Kim (who did the natal chart reading) offered to do a journeying session to uncover and release some karma, I was all in!

So what is a shamanic journey? When I sat down to write this, I wasn’t really sure myself how to explain it but Google hooked me up.

“Shamanic journeying is a way of communicating with your inner or spirit self and retrieving information”  (source: Shamanic Drumming)

Who doesn’t want to get information from their inner self? I sure do!

What I did not realize was that a shaman can see in to other people’s inner/spirit selves – which is a very good thing because my attempt did not get very far (spoiler alert for three paragraphs down.)

So how does this work?  Did you know that you can journey with a Shaman through the internet? You sure can!  Kim and I connected on a Zoom call and chatted for a bit. We revisited my natal chart and talked about some stuff going on and then we jumped in.

I had my sacred space set up with crystals and incense and candles (yup, I have this stuff, now) and I laid back on my bed, relaxed and ready to go!  Kim led me through a sort of guided meditation and then started the shamanic drumming and rattling while she kept saying “shamanic” things that, full disclosure, I could not totally hear because of the drumming and rattling.

I tried REALLY hard to “see” stuff. I am sure I was trying too hard, but that’s how I roll. I saw a few images of the old west, desert and mountains, a porcupine, a cactus, a wagon, a fire pit, a woman in a white dress, a baby, a gun, and a pickle. Yes, a pickle.

At the point I saw the pickle, I was thought, “Clearly this is not working for me. Random stuff is coming in to my head and it can’t really mean anything.”  I told Kim what I saw and she said everything that comes in to your head means something, so maybe it did. So far, the meaning of the pickle is unknown.

But Kim saw a full on past life of mine. She went right in to my soul and pulled it out. Because she is a shaman and that is what shamans do. How do I know she really saw a past life? Well, I have no scientific proof, of course, but when she told me about it, I could feel that is was true. And every time I tell someone else about it, I can feel that it is true. Writing this now, I can feel that it is true. It feels true. That’s all I know.

It was a tragic story. It doesn’t feel right to reveal all of the details on the internet. It wasn’t just my lifetime, it was also the lifetimes of my brother and sister, who in this past lifetime were my children. They key takeaways were that I tried to hide all of us to protect us from something horrible and I couldn’t protect us. It did not end well.

This all made sense to me in terms of my relationships with my siblings. They are my heart and I completely believe they were my children in a previous lifetime.  The “hiding out” part Kim related to me hiding my true self from the world in this lifetime.  Holding back and not letting people see me. Metaphorically and literally.  This is definitely something I do.  I have dabbled in busting out, but I always run back. Laying low, avoiding connection, and staying quiet is where I am most comfortable.  In this past life something super scary happened and I hid to protect myself from it.  In this life my soul still wants to keep hiding. But we are here to learn lessons and clearly this is one I am working on.

Sure, the logical side of my brain understands that Kim could have intuited this story from everything she and I talked about and what she knows about me.  And I am sure some of you are thinking that, too. Does a Shaman see “past lives” or do they “see” stories that help people understand things about themselves in new ways and push through them.  Does it matter?  Isn’t ANY way to help people understand things about themselves and become a happier/better person a good thing?

I know Kim believes 100% that she is seeing stories from people’s souls that they carry with them from lifetime to lifetime.  (And she said it always surprises her when she does it!)  I know how this story FEELS to me, so I believe it, too.

What shamans can also do, I learned,  is bring back a part of your soul to re-integrate it. A part that is missing and holding you back. Kim convinced my former self (who’s name was Agnes) that I am not in danger now so I can come out.  It’s not quite that simple. I have not morphed in to an adventurous extrovert who always speaks her mind overnight. I have to work with Agnes on this now that we have been reunited, but it is kind of fun to tell myself “Let’s go Agnes, we’re stepping out!” (which I have been doing a bit more). I dragged my co-workers to a happy hour because I told them I was re-integrate part of my soul. They were awesome and supportive and went with me. I mean, how can you say no when someone tells you their soul depends on it!

What’s also awesome is that this work I am doing on my soul can apparently help the souls of my brother and sister! There definitely seemed to be some energetic shifts that happened. My somewhat skeptical sister (aka Matilda) became somewhat curious and could not stop thinking about this story. It made her feel elated even though the ending was tragic. Some karma release perhaps?  And my brother (aka Bobby, short for Robert) has been unusually communicative with my sister and I since this Shamanic Journey. Coincidence? Karma release? Hmmm….

It’s still crazy to me that I am on this path. I met someone last week and I found myself talking about all of this new spiritual stuff I am learning about.  At one point he asked me, “When did you go on this Pilgrimage?” I told him it was just in May. And he said, “So this is all new? Who were you in March? What would we be talking about if I met you in March?”  That really blew my mind.  It feels like light years since March.  And who will I be NEXT March?  Or in my next lifetime? There is so much yet to be revealed….

 

All The Retrogrades

It’s been a minute, I know!  It’s soooooo hard to find time to write! But here I am! Let me catch you up….

Right after I got back from the UK, one of my employees resigned and my already heavy workload doubled in the job that is not my life’s purpose #bummer (I think in hashtags now, blame Instagram.)

BUT, I still moved forward with gusto to help some of my fellow pilgrims/heroes/spiritual creative friends with projects so I could learn more about what they need and how I can help them.

I gave my friend Maryanne some social media coaching, and she is doing great with  beautiful posts about her work as a Gyrotonics and Gyrokinesis instructor!  (FYI she happens to be teaching a 40 day online course. If you are looking for a morning movement and breath practice with an amazing teacher find her on Instagram and she will hook you up!)

I helped my friend Kim get her website cleaned up and get a page posted for her upcoming Soul Deep Retreat. I learned that building websites in WordPress is fun, but very time consuming!  Helping creative & spiritual entrepreneurs with systems related stuff feels like the right move, but websites might have to be outsourced or kept very simple. Good learning.  Another side note…if you have any interest in Shamanism, want an astrology reading, or to get more deeply connected to your soul and change some recurring patterns in your life, reach out to Kim! I have done a couple of sessions with her myself that have been very eye opening (more on that later) and I just love her.

I also helped my friend Chris set up her Acuity scheduling system so she can have her clients automatically schedule time with her.  Chris is a costume designer/stylist launching a business to help people clear out their closets and fill them back up with clothes that make them happy! How amazing is that! Chris is a talented artist and a beautiful soul. (I love my new friends!) If you have some closets that need clearing or some styling needs, Chris is taking on new clients this fall! You can find her here on Instagram.

In the middle of all of that excitement, I got sick. My bi-annual sinus infection reared its ugly head and it lasted for weeks!  My body was clearly trying to send me a message and I think it might have been…

“Starting your own business is too scary! Stay where it is safe and you know you will succeed and have a steady paycheck. Stop all of this side hustle shit.”

I also just completely melted down emotionally, and had all kinds of doubts about everything and there were a lot of tears and thoughts like this…What have I gotten myself in to? Can I really have my own business? How can I work on this and do my full time job? Why can’t I connect with my spirit guides and see my past lives like everyone else? Why won’t my crystal talk to me?!  Why isn’t the Reiki working!? What am I doing!!! Is this all bull shit? 

Good times.

But ALSO during all of this, I was exposed to Astrology!!!!!! This completely deserves its own post (and there might be many because I am kind of obsessed at the moment.) What I will say now, is that we are apparently in the middle of a very crazy astrological time. Its eclipse season, both mercury and mars are in retrograde, and Uranus moves in to retrograde soon.  I had no idea what any of this meant before two weeks ago (and I still don’t really but now I talk like this!) Is it real? Is it not real? Well, it made me feel better to know that, possibly, planetary alignments could be contributing to me feeling like shit because planets keep moving so there might be an end! You tell me if you have been feeling any of this in the past few weeks?

In simple terms, this astrology feels like an explosion with an earthquake thrown in for good measure. Eclipses pull up shadows and things we wanted to keep hidden. Mercury retrograde tries to trick us in to making mistakes so we can learn from them. Mars retrograde demands that we make our anger, potency, and power conscious so that we might use it wisely instead of destructively. Uranus demands change. (Source: Chani Nichols)

I can’t exactly tell you when it will let up (because I don’t really know what I am talking about yet) BUT the final eclipse is on August 11th so this could be good news!

There was also a shamanic journeying sessions that I am still processing (wow!) and I learned about my energy centers of training which I need to tell you about did some shadow fear work and some Ho’oponopono meditation.  Its been a lot of stuff!

When I thought about sitting down to write this post, I thought what would come out was…”Yeah, I’ve been working a lot and I got sick and was miserable”, but now that I am at the end of the post, I realize that I have been working on and moving through a lot of stuff. This is why I should write more!!

I will be back soon….I promise!