Jenn Talks Her Ever Loving Head Off

I’m waiting for my latest video to finish uploading/processing so I can link it here and then get to bed.  I’m determined to keep this momentum train running!  I finally had to break down and figure out how to do the actual recorder on my webcam on my laptop vs the one you can directly do from youtube, because I got tired of it disconnecting randomly which then made me nervous I was going to do a bunch of recording and then lose it all again.  So once I took care of that and wasn’t running into issues with the recording, I ended up talking for an hour!  O.O

It went by so fast!  Anyways, I go all over the map, but it’s also all connected.  I bring up some things in a book I read, and I only really bring up one line in it, but there’s still a ton more equally fascinating things in the book, so it is possible that it will be the topic of other videos in the future.  The main point for me at this moment, is just that I keep doing the videos and/or posts.  This is a sticky part of the ‘overcoming fear’ process for me.  This is where I either make incredible progress or I start sliding backwards, and fuck that.

Not So Bad After All

I’m starting to really gain traction in overcoming a lifelong fear and so I’m going to keep throwing myself into the fire.  I’m posting and putting myself out there more, even at work.  Although I’m barely getting a response, it’s like crickets out there.

That kind of hits at the core of my fear though, you know?  Like I finally start to come out of hiding and the reception is luke warm at best.  Luckily my focus is more on trying to do whatever I’m doing for my own personal enjoyment.

It felt really nice doing the video yesterday.  I was the most relaxed I can ever recall being in a situation like that.  I was much more comfortable in my skin.  Kind of like, hey . . . this isn’t so bad.

The biggest thing I’m learning out of the video blogs though, is from watching them myself later.  I know all of the things that were going through my head during that time, and it’s quite a different experience seeing what it looks like from the outside.

I find that my favorite parts, are the ones that normally I would’ve stopped the recording and started all over again to edit them out.  I’m seeing firsthand how I edit myself out of my life constantly.  Living it, I know exactly why I do it . . . but watching it from the other side, I’m like WHY in the HELL are you doing that?!  Let her come out more!

The parts where silly me slips out like when I crack myself up, can feel embarrassing to me on the inside, like “Woops, I wasn’t supposed to do that, I’m a grown up and grown ups don’t act like that.”

From this other perspective, I am understanding less why I worry so much about how people will receive me.  Watching as if I were meeting me for the first time, I find myself feeling, “I like this person.  I really like her.  If I were to meet someone like her in life, she would be my lifelong friend.”

The biggest shock of all is what I didn’t see.  I have all of these impressions and perspectives from what has been reflected back to me by others that I’ve been close to in life.  Those things absolutely do not match what I see.  From doing this exercise I’m only now becoming truly aware of how much what other people have projected onto me, isn’t me.

Prior to these vlogs (ah ah ah . . . sesame street count), I had never watched myself on video.  I never got to experience me for myself.

I’m not sure what I was expecting.  A villain?  Horns to appear when I began speaking?  My eyes to turn blood red?  I was expecting more of an attitude to be coming out of me.  I was expecting to look like I was just totally full of shit.  I was expecting to be annoyed or irritated by me.  I was expecting to watch me and be like, “I hate you, you disgust me.”  I was expecting to see hints of arrogance and like I was holier than thou.  Like I was trying to be something I’m not.  Like I’m trying to be better than I really am.

But after watching?  My perception about myself is changing vastly, because I’ll tell you something . . . if I were to meet someone like me in life, I wouldn’t even dream of treating her like I’ve been treated.  In fact, it’s appalling when I look back on my life.  My respect for about a dozen or so people in my life just totally went into the toilet, along with their ability to influence me.

I am very happy to have been able to meet and see me for myself so that I no longer have to take other people’s word for it.  I’m used to stories of people facing themselves in the mirror and not liking what they see.  I don’t know that I’ve ever heard of a story of someone facing themselves in the mirror and being surprised by how much they like who they see.

This is all I needed, I just needed to know for myself that I am not as horrible of a person as I thought.  That’s something I can take to my heart and give myself a safe harbor to weather storms.  From there, it’s okay if you don’t like me.  It’s okay if I’m alone.  It’s okay if I’m invisible.

I faced and judged myself with the same measures in which I judge others, and I experienced something completely unexpected.  I really like who I am.  If I were a man, I would adore, protect, and cherish someone like me.  I would do anything to make her happy and to keep her smiling and laughing.  If I were another woman meeting me, I would want to be best friends for life and would give thanks to the heavens every day that I had her in my life and would go on crazy girl adventures, getting into trouble and enjoying the hell out of life.

If I’m able to feel that way about myself, then there’s just no excuse for me allowing otherwise into my life.

Fought For Me

Continuing To Conquer My Creative Fears

Does she mean conquering her fears of creativity or does she mean that her fears are creative?  The world may never know.  Alright, here’s another vlog (does that sound Dracula-ish?)

Go Know Life, Go Know Love

Yesterday I wrote how I had to grow enough as a person just to have the experience and strength needed to begin healing childhood hurts.  It seems that was a foretelling of what was going to begin emerging today.

The last few days in the Pacific Northwest have been absolutely beautiful.  I couldn’t ask for more perfect weather.  It’s been so over the top gorgeous, it has been softening my temperament (which is by default high-strung).  And with current planetary transits . . . omg, there is so much love and feel-goods coming through too.

I haven’t felt so great health-wise the last couple of years, and I definitely haven’t felt much like myself.  It’s all inter-related to a relationship with a man I was engaged to for a short time 3 years ago.  It began with such a whirlwind of magic and a mountain of impossible coincidences that were threaded throughout both of our lives.  All of the pieces of our individual puzzles matched up perfectly to form the most beautiful big picture I had ever witnessed with my 3rd eye.

I hope he forgives me for speaking of it so openly.  He still comes here even though we no longer speak.  I mean no disrespect.

When we met, my heart and mind were alight with possibilities and dreams of our future life together.  Things that we dreamt of together.  When we met, I was in the best place emotionally that I had ever been in my life.  Just prior to our meeting, I had finally reached wholeness within.  Peace.  My world was aglow.  I was in the process of learning how to sustain it indefinitely.  I was in it more than not.

It made perfect sense and came as a natural flow into my life just like everything else was at that time.  I was not in need of a relationship, I did not seek it, but there it was.  I thought, finally, I will get this right.  I will get to know what it feels like to have a healthy relationship, not one based on co-dependency.  I thought my ship had arrived.  I had taken a 7 year break from relationships to understand who I was outside of one.  (Strangely the same period between the two Venus eclipses that are 7 years apart and won’t repeat in our lifetime.)

The planets were literally aligned for us.

Despite endless heartbreaks from relationships earlier in my life, I was ready to give love another chance.  Me and my warrior heart.  I was so convinced of us, I went all in.

My faith and belief in the magic of us carried me through the next three years.  In hindsight, I can see that things were showing signs of not being okay before the end of the first year we had met.  We had initially spoke of making immediate plans to come together.  He lives in The Netherlands, and of course moving to another country takes some time and planning.  So when things didn’t immediately happen, I was patient.  I went over there three times the first year we were together.  We skyped every weekend and even weekdays.

My friends excitedly kept asking for updates on the progress of our plans, and at first it was easy to explain.  “Oh, there’s so much paperwork for marrying a US Citizen and precautions that it’s taking a bit of time.”  “Well he has his finances and real estate he has to take care of over there first.”

But a point came where I heard myself repeating these excuses and I could feel how it was hurting my feelings.  After 6 months it was too humiliating to give any excuses, especially when absolutely zero progress of any kind had been made, and so I found myself just looking down and quietly saying, “I don’t know.”

We broke up in November 2013.  But no matter how much I tried, I couldn’t forget him.  We began speaking again in March 2014.  Regardless of our intentions, things never progressed further for us.  It wasn’t from a lack of trying.  Then one day, I found I had nothing left to say.  I guess neither did he because he didn’t respond.  After years of daily correspondence, two weeks of silence passed between us.  When he finally did send me a short friendly note, I had retreated too far inside of myself to respond.  That was the last of our communication.

I’ve been struggling with it, but mostly I have been focused on trying to regain my health.  Also, I don’t have anyone in my life to talk to about it.  I have friends, but nobody I’m close to.  Nobody that I feel comfortable talking to about things that make me cry.  So my struggle is in part, not knowing what to do with these feelings in me.

Which brings me to this afternoon.  This beautiful, warm, sunny, breezy day.  As I opened my heart to welcome in the warmth and sun, I felt a realization seep into me like a leak in the roof, one drop at a time.

I’m reaching a point of strength within myself to be able to handle the heartbreak I feel inside, that I can trace back to 2012 when something deep inside of me already knew that he had checked out of the relationship.  I wasn’t ready to let go of those beautiful visions I had been flooded with when we first came together.  I had gone all in.  How could I possibly admit defeat before the year had even closed out?  That I could feel that he had lost interest and was just going along with the motions.  When a man is really in love with a woman, he will move heaven and earth for her.  He wasn’t a man in love, and I couldn’t face it.

He is a loving man.  He is a caring man.  But a person can’t make themselves feel something they don’t, and there’s no shame in that.

If I had been more brave and honest within myself, I would have set him free the moment I realized it, but I couldn’t do it.  I have to set that right.

I want him to know love.  I want him to find a woman that makes him weak in the knees and who makes him forget that he ever knew heartbreak or suffering.  I want him to make mistakes and take risks.  I want him to find a woman that makes him smile and makes him happy to be alive.  I want him to find a woman who can actually get him angry and ruffle his feathers, because it’s good for his soul.  I want him to find a woman he can go on adventures with and who brings out the little boy in him.  And when he finds her, I hope he has the courage to marry her.  I hope that whoever she is, she is loved by his mom, dad, and brother because I know how important they are in his life.

heart says to let go

The Magical Place Called Healed: A Tale of the Journey to the Land of True and Lasting Joy and the Treacherous Path That Leads The Way


True healing takes discipline.  It takes dedication, sincerity, and courage.  Strength.  Similar to exercise, you only get out of it what you put into it.

I am referring to mental, emotional, psychological healing, although I imagine that extreme physical rehabilitation, such as learning how to walk again, is a very similar journey.

From my teens into my late twenties I struggled with severe depression and anxiety.  I also had Complex PTSD (C-PTSD), which is not an official recognized mental disorder according to the American Psychiatric Association, but I feel that is to do with technicalities in definition and nothing to do with whether it exists or not.  As I tried to figure out what was wrong with me that made it nearly impossible to function as a contributing member of society, I also ran into suggestions from specialists of being on the autistic spectrum, being a highly sensitive person, potentially bi-polar, and I was officially diagnosed with ADD.

I had my first nervous breakdown at 19.  I was already a divorced single mom.  My son’s dad (ex-husband) was already gone by then, and never did return despite the joint-custody agreement, and so in my mind I didn’t have the luxury of falling apart.  My son was still just a baby and needed me.  I truly believe that I still exist in this world today due to him, because he gave me a solid reason to not give up.  Through the years, no matter how shattered I was in pain, no matter how desperate my situation . . . and there were many of those . . . never did I reach a state where I could abandon my son to this world and leave him alone.

But I lived in hell within myself.  Daily I was tortured.  There were years where I was just trying to survive from minute to minute.  Breathe Jenn . . . take another breath.  Now do it again.  Again.

In my late twenties, as I hit my Saturn Return, it felt like my entire physical, mental, & emotional being hit a brick wall (which is very Capricorn/Saturn-like).  It was triggered when my son, who was just turning 12 at the time, spent a week in the hospital for suicide watch.  (I also had Pluto transiting my MC/Midheaven.)

I had only thought I suffered before that.  What followed next had me begging for the days I knew before.

I had thought that I had worked hard enough, suffered, and sacrificed myself enough, to spare my son the same pain that I lived in.  But I was given a wake up call and shown just how very wrong I was as I sat there in shock signing papers to admit him into the hospital.  Everything I thought I knew and understood about life got flipped upside down that night.

I had barely been making it, but as long as my son was doing well and thriving, I could handle it.  But he wasn’t doing so well, was he?  Now what?  I had no guidance or manual for what to do.  I had done everything I knew to get this far . . . where did I go from there?

We had just gotten new kittens the week before . . . Raven and Gir.  They were from a shelter and they were both temporarily on antibiotics that I had to give.  I remember when first returning home after they admitted my son, trying to pull myself together enough to make sure the kittens got their medicine.  I couldn’t handle anymore bad news, anymore feelings of loss, or being out of control and so it felt like at least with this I had control of something.

So I put into them, focused on them the care and love and kindness I was needing myself.  They became my focal point, my anchor, to keep my shit together while I tried to make sense of my newly shattered world.  To those of you who are regular readers, you’ll remember that it was this time last year almost to the day . . . that I got that fateful call from the vet to hear that my Raven girl was in stage 4 renal (kidney) failure and died shortly afterwards on May 5th.  Cinco de Mayo.  Perhaps it makes a little more sense now why that was so devastating to me.  She came into my life the week before everything I knew fell to pieces and was the glue that held me together through the next 7 years.

But what she did was start the process of removing that same focus from my son, and helped me transition from using him as an anchor and reason for living . . . to finding that anchor and reason for living within myself so that my son would be free to go live his own life without me falling apart or losing my reason to live.  This last year since her death is the first year without my training wheels.  My first year of trying to live for my own sake and not the sake of my mother, or my son, or any substitute outside of me  And it’s been hard.

That first night that I came home after admitting my son into the hospital for the first time, I remember being in a daze.  I also remember calling my consciousness to me so that I didn’t black out.  I had already gone through so much discipline trying to pull myself together to be the best mom I could despite being so broken inside.  I had already learned to not run from the pain, to not run from whatever situation was unfolding in front of me.  I had enough faith in myself and the universe to know that this was all happening for a good reason, even if I didn’t understand what that reason was.  I knew instinctively that this was a blessing in disguise, and so I took a deep breath and with eyes wide open . . . I walked straight into my pain to see what message waited for me there.

And as I said, it was like walking into a brick wall.  In a flash I saw visuals of images from throughout my life, I heard all of the things said in my childhood that never quite made any sense, I felt the repressed and suppressed (one is done consciously, one is not) feelings and emotions that had led me to that moment right there.  I was in a flurry of scenes, sounds, and feelings and all of the connections between them that summed up the root causes of my pain and suffering.  Including a therapist who my mom had taken me to when I was 8 years old and was so frustrated with me because I refused to cooperate and take his questions seriously (I honestly had no idea what he was trying to get me to talk about), told me that if I didn’t deal with the things I had been through then one day when I was about 30 it was all going to come out at once and I’d have to deal with it then.  Which I thought, and may have even said, that’s good . . . I’ll deal with it then.

So there I was, around age 30, and all of this stuff suddenly unlocked in me.  I then knew why it had to be like that, why it had to wait until I was older.  All of these things were too much for a young girl to handle and process.  They were beyond little girl me.  I had to build enough life experience, as well as build enough emotional strength and discipline just to reach the point of being able to handle knowing and remembering what little girl me went through.

Only then could the real healing process begin.  I cracked wide open.  I went through the “My whole life has been a lie” period where the very foundation of your life gets ripped from underneath you and you don’t have anything solid to anchor or orient your life to.  And it’s not that my life had been a lie necessarily, but little girl me was incredibly creative and resourceful and so she painted my life in the way that she needed to in order to survive until she was strong enough to face it and heal from it.

The next couple of years were the hardest of my life.  It felt like I had acid burning and running through my veins 24/7.  I felt like someone had peeled my skin off of my body and my nerves were completely exposed to the elements.  I was in overwhelming, excruciating physical pain.  The diagnosis being batted around at that time were things like Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.  I reached a point of not being able to walk.  I had to use a cane for a little while.  Mentally I was pushed into moments of true insanity from the toll of everything.

I used to be concerned with my sensitivities, such as seeing visuals and hearing things, etc. that I might be crazy.  But I am VERY clear now that there is a big difference between true insanity and being sensitive (or psychic if you wish), although there is a thin line between the two if you are not on top of your shit.  I cannot emphasize enough how foolish it is to try and force that state for recreational purposes without some sort of discipline, or training, guidance, and a healthy dose of respect for what you are doing.  I never needed drugs to have those experiences, and during the periods where I temporarily lost those abilities, I can understand why people do use drugs to reach it . . . there’s a kind of desperate feeling of being disconnected from Sprit.  It’s horrible.  In my current understanding of things, it is the root cause of all addictions.  Trying to regain connection with Spirit.  Whether drugs, sex, alcohol, etc.  It temporarily opens you back up in your body and allows that connection to take place, and it feels so good because that is more of our natural state.

When you become overwhelmed with hurt and pain (guilt, shame . . . choose your poison), that connection starts to dim and gets covered up and you start to never feel good.  So then you start to use artificial things to try and help you feel good such as food, shopping, reading, partying, drinking, etc.  But it never sticks . . . it never stays.  Why?  Because you’re trying to shortcut straight through your pain and hurt without actually dealing with the issues.  Which brings me back to:  True healing takes discipline.  It takes dedication, sincerity, and courage.

Do you want to continue depending solely on temporary fixes for fleeting moments of feeling good, or are you willing to put in the hard work and dedication needed to make the feeling permanent and long lasting?  Because I’m here to tell you, I don’t care what label or diagnoses has been laid at your feet, I don’t care how bleak or hopeless you think your cause is . . . it can be overcome.  I have overcome many supposedly impossible things.  I have personally walked this road.  There is a way through.  You are not doomed to your diagnosis.  You are not doomed to suffer the rest of your life.  You have a choice.  It’s not easy, and not everyone is at a stage in their life where they have the strength to take this journey.  But knowing the universe like I do based on observations and personal experience, if you’ve found your way into my life . . . to my words . . . then you are at that stage.  You have what it takes to find your way through.

In every generation, there are the pioneers and those that lead the way to something new.  Like the pioneers who went west in the early US.  Their life was hard.  Many died trying to make the journey.  They suffered and paid a great price just for the opportunity for a better life.  With those first few, came a few more.  Then railroads, roadways, airplanes.  Now how hard is it to reach the West?  How much does a person have to sacrifice and suffer to access it?

This is the same.  It is the unknown, and so it seems dark and scary.  We make a bigger monster out of it as a whole, because it scares us.  What current average person isn’t scared of a Psycho or Socio Path?  Who doesn’t cringe and start backing away slowly from Schizophrenia and Bi-Polar?  Who doesn’t look at Autism as being a shame and in some form tragic?  How many look down upon addicts or mental patients?  Do you see our learned attitude about these things?  Yes psychology has made great leaps in mental/emotional health, but it is still not being seen for what it truly is and so the solution is equally difficult to see.

We hurt and we suffer because something is out of balance or not right.  When it’s something that is out of balance or not right in the culture or society as a whole, it emerges as mental disorders and diseases.  If it is increasing each year, a false belief or something not aligned with natural law, is spreading or worsening.  And for as long as the group insists on running from the truth instead of actually dealing with the things they should be dealing with in the way they should be dealing with it, openly and honestly, instead of being distracted by nonsense and bullshit . . . it will continue to worsen before it gets better.

It worsens and spreads until there isn’t a single person that isn’t affected by it in some way.  Until people can no longer say, “Everything is fine.”  Until people are suffering from it so much, and after trying everything they can currently think of that is allowed within the current paradigm of thinking, it eventually leads them to a place where they’d do anything in order to make it alright again.  Including praying, maybe for the first time in their life.  Swallowing their pride.  Being humbled.  Realizing maybe they don’t know everything, maybe they don’t have as much control over things as they thought.  In those moments a person either opens their heart or they snap completely.  Have you noticed the increase in people losing their shit in recent years?  We are at that breaking point both as a collective and as individuals.

We are in uncharted territories.  We cannot currently rely on outer authority to help truly navigate these waters because the authorities aren’t *out there* yet . . . they are just now coming into being.  They are being shaped, formed, and refined as we speak, by the very horrors our world is being forced to live through.  These are not individual sins we are dealing with, they are collective sins.  Things that over generations of time, individuals let get so out of hand instead of dealing with them, that they are now all of our problems.  But at the same time it’s all we’ve ever known and so we’re blind to them.

We are the modern day pioneers, and our unknown territory is the human psyche.  To be a true pioneer, you must have a warrior heart.  You must find the strength and courage to walk alone.  You must be an adventurer, you must be curious.  You must be sincere.  You must do it for something bigger than you.  It can’t just be for you alone, or you won’t find the needed strength and motivation to get through the darkest nights.  You have to take calculated risks and chances.  You have to be willing to keep going and trying no matter how many of your ideas fail or don’t work out.  You have to risk looking a fool and being made fun of.

You have to be willing to let yourself crack open and fall apart.  You have to be willing to let go of everything you believed to be true up until that point.  And not in an endless mindless woe is me way, but consciously.  What do I mean by that?

Imagine you have before you a path of burning coals, and you just happened to be barefoot.  The bed of coals before you is only about 10 feet in length.  It’s too far for you to jump, and suddenly there’s a wall behind you and two walls alongside you and the path.  You must walk barefoot over the path.  This is very much what it’s like when having to face down one of your inner demons which are like the gatekeepers that test you to see if you’re allowed to pass through or if you need to repeat some lessons.  Your choices are to stand there for eternity making the same mistakes, or start learning how to walk on fire and burn the darkness out of you that clouds and weighs you down with burden.  When I say consciously, I mean you purposefully and intentionally step onto those burning coals and you let whatever sensation you feel, come through you without trying to fight it or make it stop.  Let it happen.

You do not close your eyes, you do not try to pretend you are somewhere else, you do not run.  It is a decision, a resolve deep inside that you will do whatever it takes to make your way through.  And as you take each step, and you initially feel that excruciating burn, you use the only resource you have at your disposal and that is your internal guidance.  You must stay aware and breathing and open in order to know what needs to be done.  If you panic, if you let yourself freak out about your situation in any way, you make it that much worse for yourself.  That much more painful.  You have to walk the coals anyways, so you might as well figure out a way to endure it.

Because something happens in a human when they are tested to this degree and they are not so rigid that they break.  A transformation takes place.  Blocks, things that are stuck, worn out beliefs, things that are not true . . . are forced from the person’s being.  In that situation, you have no room or time for ANY bullshit because you need everything you have to focus on what’s happening in that moment.  When you refuse to run and you refuse to black out or lose consciousness or awareness, you give the darkness no choice but to flee because that’s where the burning and pain comes from.  It forces it to leave, and then you are left with only what is real and pure . . . You.  And I promise you, when the last of what isn’t true leaves you, the pain and suffering within you will cease.  You will have learned the firewalker’s secret for walking over burning coals without being harmed.

It can happen quickly, within moments.  It could happen slowly over years.  It depends on a number of things, but mostly on how resistant you are to let go of what you think you know and what you believe to be true that isn’t actually true.  How stubborn, how prideful are you?  How open are you to learning?  How much does it mean to you that what you believe is right be right?  And suffering for years walking over the burning coals does not earn you extra brownie points.  It should not be considered a badge of honor.  “Yeah, I’ve suffered 20 years longer than you, so I am probably wiser than you about these things.”  Uh.  No.  That’s not how it works.  If you haven’t started to find your way out, if you haven’t continued to get closer to that state of peace and happiness in you for longer periods of time through (what seems like) superhero efforts, then you’re doing something greatly in error and you’re the last person I or anyone should be taking advice from unless we wish to learn how to be perpetually stuck.  It’s not something to be ashamed of either, because this is a fluffing hard ass path to take . . . but it takes more than just walking it to truly understand where you are and what’s going on.

To get more out of this path, you have to walk slowly, purposefully, and consciously.  The point is not to simply get past it and then recover, because it is not the only fire pit that you will be facing on this journey.  And it’s also not the point of the fire pits.  When you’ve truly learned through personal experience the point of them, and you put in the hard work it takes to slowly, consciously, and open-heartedly walk across them to the point that you not only stop fearing them, but look forward to them . . . then you will have begun to reach the place I call Healed.  Being whole within yourself.

It is a state of grace.  It is when a human is re-centered properly in themselves and they are able to hold open and stay in connection with their Spirit, Soul, as well as the Divine . . . at all times.  It is a life without fear, a life without addiction, and no longer being a slave to your senses or ego.  From that state you live and know the Truth and nature of things.  Your eyes and ears are wide open, your heart is wide open and you are fully protected and safe.  You know in the deepest depths of your being that you are okay . . . you are safe.  It’s beyond faith, beyond knowing you are safe and protected, beyond praying, hoping, and wishing you are protected . . . you are in the active state of always being safe and protected.  It’s not even a topic of discussion or a question in your mind.  It would be like asking if there is still oxygen in the air for your lungs . . . it gets to that level of silly.

The world, the physical world around you, literally shimmers as golden light.  And when you zoom your focus in on it, you see . . . you feel . . . you know . . . it’s conscious light.  You understand creation at a whole new level that you cannot see, cannot experience, and cannot know while you insist on staying small, hurt, and broken.

So if you haven’t reached that place, if you haven’t experienced that state of being while conscious and awake in your human body . . . then you are not done yet.  You have not reached the place you seek and you must keep going.  Keep trying, keep growing, keep learning.  Learn about love, learn about truth, learn about who you really are inside and not what you’ve been led to believe.  You are not doomed to suffer your whole life, not if you truly, genuinely, and sincerely are done with it.  You are not cursed and you are not fated to be miserable because of any set of circumstances that have or will happen in your life.  You can overcome.  You will have restrictions, you will have challenges, but they are there to strengthen your weaknesses that are needed in order to successfully navigate this journey . . . not to punish you.

There is so much more to life than what we’ve been taught . . . in fact Life doesn’t truly begin until you reach that place.  It’s worth all of the hard work and frustration.  Not only is it worth it, it’s what is needed most right now.  The more people who make this journey and reach the desired destination, the easier it will be for others to reach it as well.  The more people who reach it, the more support we all have, the stronger we become, and then the easier it will be for others to make the journey when their time comes.  Before you know it, people will be able to fly airplanes there.  😀

Can you imagine such a world, such a future?  Where we are healed and whole both as individuals and as a species?  What could humanity accomplish in such a world?

What if all you were asked to do in this life to play a part in bringing that future about, was to find the courage, strength, and faith to truly heal yourself.  To overcome your circumstances and to rise from the ashes?  To find it in you to overcome, to do what they said couldn’t be done.  To become a firewalker?

Velveteen Rabbit

The Hand of My Inner Child

This is so beautiful I had to share. Blogger emergingfromthedarknight has been on a long journey to finding her true self and in this post I felt her make contact with that part of her. Seeing someone find and make contact with who they really are, for me, is by far the most beautiful thing imaginable. I feel so happy for you emergingfromthedarknight! You have me crying buckets. ❤

Emerging From The Dark Night

Mother-holding-childs-han-001

The inner child in us never stops longing for sweetness, for connection, for joy, for passion for a deeply vibrant life.

I probably can’t speak for everyone but in my own life and especially more recently after a period of tapping into my young self’s longing for attention, understanding, love, empathy comfort and support and grieving all the ways in which it was absent in the course of my growing up I have become aware that that child and her longing lives on in me, has lived on in my throughout all the years of my addiction and recovery.

Just a moment ago I had a powerful experience of seeing my inner child in my mind’s eye.  In my imagination I took her little hand in mine and started to cry and I had a powerful realisation of how far she has had to travel on this long journey of…

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How The Internet Going Out Changed My Life

Do you ever have one of those days where you just *know* that fate had a hand in the events that played out?  It’s been awhile since I’ve felt that, but today was one of those days.

It was more than just the unlikely sequence of events that took place that left me feeling like that.  Preposterous things in general have a way of showing up in my life, so that’s not enough to make me raise an eyebrow.  No.  These events had a little something extra added to them.  Each one increasing the presence of that extra feeling that if I had to put words to it, might say something like, “Pay extra attention . . . magic is afoot . . . something bigger is unfolding.”

So my internet went out again this last week.  This is the 3rd time in a month.  And when it goes out, it goes out for  d a y s.  I have to completely shift how I live life.  It is absolutely amazing to me how much I rely on it now, when 20 years ago, I had never heard of it.  But anyways, being ever the optimist I’m like, “Okay, well shit.  What to do now . . . ”

This alone is a micro-series of events that took place.  It involves a whole weekend of meeting up with different friends and going to the movies and coffee shops, another weekend of inviting my son over for dinner and board games (yahtzee . . . lots of yahtzee), going to a used bookstore and finding 5 book gems that I couldn’t wait to get home and read.  It involved even more inner reflection than usual (I had nothing else to do while I stared into blank nothingness as I ate my dinner.)

So all of that led to my most recent post about all of my thinking about ‘art’.  After writing that post, the thought stream didn’t end there, it continued on the next day (usually writing about something will satisfy whatever is going on in my head and proceed to leave me alone . . . but not so here).  In that post, I had brought up my flute playing from when I was younger.  It started to haunt me.

I had completely forgotten about the musician in me.  I’ve been a mom and business analyst for so long, it completely escaped my mind that this wasn’t all I used to be.  In fact, I was so into my music in school, I fully intended to major in Music.  I was going to make it my life.  I remembered asking my mom what kind of things they have a person do to get a Ph.D in music, and she said they do things like give you an unfinished score from Mozart or one of the greats and ask you to finish it.  That scared the living shit out of me, but I was like . . . I’ll do it.  That’s how I knew that was my field.

As a little girl I had wanted to be many things and I could never make up my mind.  I wanted to be a archeologist and dig in dirt and find old things.  I wanted to be an astrophysicist and study the universe.  I wanted to be a teacher, but mostly because I wanted the summers off.  When I thought of trying to deal with 30+ kids at once, I decided that wasn’t the job for me.  I would look into what it took to be all of these things I wanted to be, and more often than not I’d see the requirements and make a scrunched up face and say . . . uh . . no.

But music . . . I was willing to go through hell and back for music.

It’s just that one day in high school I kind of hit a wall.  I had reached an incredible level of playing ability with my flute, but I just couldn’t get it to the next level.  Something in me was missing.  Something wasn’t gelling in me.  I would practice for endless hours.  My sophomore year in high school, I had a tutor who had played in the Seattle Symphony.  The first time she spoke on the phone with my mother (to arrange the lessons) and upon hearing that I wanted to go into music as a career, the tutor let my mom know that the music field is ruthless and you have to give everything you’ve got to make it in that industry and that she always encouraged her students to get a degree in some sort of science first as a backup.  She always recommended it.

Then I went to my first lesson with her.  To gauge my skill she pulled out a couple of music books and had me sight read a couple of pieces.  Saying nothing she went to her extensive music library and pulled out some more books.  This.  Now play this.  That was the entire lesson, me playing one thing after another.  Then she gave me my homework of what to study for my next lesson, and then I started to walk home.

By the time I returned home, the tutor had already called my mother.  She called simply to say, “If she wants to do music, then let her do it.  She’s got what it takes to make it.”

I honestly don’t know what I had done to impress her, but at my next lesson there was talk of traveling to Paris and competing there and . . . and . . .

That’s when I hit the wall.  I suddenly could go no further.  Something in me completely locked up and froze.  As I said before, something in me was missing.  I didn’t know what it was then . . . but I know what it is now.  It took me over 20 years of life experience and of completely walking away from music and everything I loved, in order to gain that missing something in me.  I know without a doubt that I would not have made it very much further without the experience and knowledge I’ve gained from the last couple of decades.  It would have been futile.  I would have been banging my head against a wall and I don’t think things would’ve ended well for me if I had forced it anyways.

So all of this was coming back to me.  Music.  My first love in life.  I’m not just a mom or an analyst.  I am a musician.  Even just saying it out loud brought me such peace . . . and tears.  It wasn’t just remembering I was a musician, it was allowing that feeling and reality back into my awareness.  It’s been in my peripheral for so long I had become blind to it.  I spoke about it, I’ve even tried over the years to try and play instruments again . . . but it just wasn’t time yet and so it floated in and out of my life over the years like the tide.  But this time something different is happening.

And then came today.  I woke up again with that feeling of waking from a dream and remembering, “I am a musician.” with an underline feeling of excitement.  It was like saying to myself, “I won the lottery.”  I had stopped at the music store yesterday to get a silver polishing cloth because I was going to clean my flute up all nice and pretty.  I was looking forward to beginning the process of reacquainting myself with my dear old friend.  This flute has been with me for 20+ years.  I first picked up a flute 26 years ago.  Just the act of cleaning it brought me back to all those years ago.

I was checking everything on it and I saw that the cork in the head joint was most likely going to need to be replaced.  The position it was in meant that there was nothing I could do to make my flute be in tune.  I cannot play an out of tune flute.  It’s against Jenn Law.  But no matter, the music store is just a stone’s throw from my apartment.  Which was good because the internet technician was supposed to come to fix the internet, and I had been given a time frame of 8am-6pm.  So I couldn’t go too far.

I got to the music store and turned in my flute to the repair shop.  However, I wanted to play an instrument so bad, I walked over to the display case where all of the really nice flutes for sell were.  I started trying them out and proceeded to fall in love with one in particular, and so I was like screw it, I’ll buy it.  You can never have enough silver flutes I always say.

But I needed to move some money from my savings account.  I asked for them to hold it while I went home to take care of the financial part of it . . . but then I remembered I had no internet and so I decided to (finally) download the bank app for my bank and sign up on my mobile so I could transfer funds there.

It was while I was in the middle of this that the extra feeling started to make itself known to me.  Something in the background of my senses was flagging me down.  I had somehow gone from internet not working to standing in a music store trying to transfer funds for a 2nd flute.  Also I was wondering if this was my version of having a mid-life crisis.  Instead of a Corvette or Porsche, I was going to own a variety of impossibly expensive flutes.

I entered the information in the app to identify myself and the app said, “Uh, sorry but the shit you typed in doesn’t match the shit we have in our system.”  I figured I mistyped something, and so I did it all again . . . my debit card number . . . my pin . . . last 4 of my SSN.  Nope.  So I did it again.  “Not only nope, but now we’ve locked your ass out of the system . . . call this number.”  So I called, and the woman was looking stuff up and then she asked for the last 4 numbers of my debit card.  I gave it and then she said, “Oh . . . that’s what is wrong.”  And then dead awkward silence.

So what happened, is that my account was a part of *something* (she didn’t say what) that could have compromised my account information and so they had sent me a new debit card with a new number.  The *something* happened on April 1st and they sent the card with explanation on April 2nd.  Sooo I can’t do anything online, only in person transactions.

And you know what?  I wasn’t even mad.  I was glad they were on top of their shit and protected me, and also . . . this was the moment that the feeling became clear to me that something was going on that was out of the ordinary . . . I was being led to something specific.  Life had a game plan unfolding and was in the process of herding me towards it.  So I explained it to the people and they were totally happy to hold the flute until my new debit card came and I was ready to continue on my day.

Except the whole “I am a musician” thing.  I was stoked for two days to get to play my flute today and now my one is in the shop and it was suddenly not made possible for me to get a 2nd one.  However . . . a couple of years ago I went through one of my momentary moods of attempting to get back into music and had gone to rent a violin . . . which I paid off completely a year ago shortly after my Raven Kitty girl died.  I’ve had it for 2 years . . . and I have never even pulled it out of the case.

I had wanted to sink my teeth into something I already knew how to do.  Get the taste of it back into my system and *then* attempt to learn a new instrument.  And yet everything had coalesced into a situation in which I was completely set to play a musical instrument . . . and yet my known instrument was suddenly yanked out from under me, leaving me only one choice.

I came home with the recommended books for starting out on violin.  By this point, the feeling of *destiny* was very much in the air and in my veins.  Violin was actually the first instrument I had ever played.  I played for a year in 4th grade but then moved to a place that only had bands and no orchestras . . . and so started my journey with the flute.  But violin . . . oh . . . where do I even begin.  Nothing . . . and I mean nothing speaks to me like a haunting gypsy melody played on the violin.  Or like the part in the song “Devil Goes Down To Georgia” (if you’ve never heard it a) have you been living under a rock your whole life? b) go to youtube and listen to it. now.)

I want to be playing *that* already, not being a new student on an instrument . . . but then again, the universe really has put itself out there to arrange this . . . so . . .

So I read the intro and everything to the Suzuki Method book.  It’s the very same book I used when learning the violin as a little girl.  The intro is surprisingly . . . well . . . meaningful.  Suzuki isn’t messing around.  He goes all meta like I do, “Education begins the day a child is born.  As an infant’s body grows day by day, its powerful life-force absorbs all the stimuli it receives externally, developing in the process of acquiring ability.  Without stimulus to the life-force, there will be no development in the child.  Under conditions of neglect, nothing and no one can grow.”

Holy shit Mr Suzuki-san.  Is this volume 1 of learning violin or the answers to the universe?  I love you crazy violin person.  Actually, this is very indicative of the Japanese culture and something I feel and know (remember) intrinsically in me.  I understand this level of crazy, so I was all in by this point, but still I was touched further when I read this sentence, “The violin is a medium for cultivating human character, ability, and heart.”

In fact, I had to take a moment’s pause to let some heart felt tears make their way out.  The accumulation of all of this was really getting to me.

I can imagine it would be like an amputee suddenly growing their limb back.  Losing the limb . . . going 20+ years coming to peace with it . . . and then it magically starting to grow back.  There’s a mix of disorientation, nostalgia, relief, . . . and . . . a larger understanding of life.

But still . . . I was having a hard time getting myself to pull the violin out of the case.  What is it?  What was stopping me?  I kept reading through the instruction books.  Proper stance, proper way to hold the bow.  How to tune, proper maintenance of the violin.  How to apply rosin . . . the name of the strings.  The instructions in French, German, & Spanish.

Something in me was wondering what the point was.  I’m not that 17 year old girl anymore.  There’s no plans to take the world by storm with my extraordinary musical talents.  There’s no audience waiting for me.  Come Monday morning I’m still going to be getting up to get ready to go to work . . . so what good does this do me?  What’s the point?  How could this make any difference in my life, I mean really?

Then I had a feeling flashback, going back to when I would spend 5 or more hours a day practicing my flute.  It brought solace to me.  In a world gone wrong, it made me feel okay again.  As I strengthened my flute skills, my body and emotions became strengthened and I could withstand the hardships in life much easier.  Being a musician is something that is for me.

So at last I reached a point where I pulled the violin out.  I dusted it off with a soft cloth.  I tightened and rosined the bow.  It was time to start tuning the strings.  I took a deep breath and drew the bow across one of the strings . . . and it rung out deep and strong.  I felt the power of the sound of the violin vibrate through my bow, my hand, and my heart.  In that moment, I understood why the universe had worked so hard to coerce and push me towards this.

There’s listening to a violin on recordings . . . in songs . . . from other people playing it.  I’ve enjoyed the violin immensely in this way.  It is an instrument that touches my soul in a way that nothing else comes close to.

But experiencing the violin as the one holding it and drawing the bow across the string myself was another thing entirely.  It is something I would willingly dedicate the rest of my life to learning.  It’s like it enables a doorway through which my soul is easily able to sing through.  This is something my heart has been searching and longing for . . . an outlet in which it can be fully expressed.  It’s like my heart was trapped in a prison and was banging on the walls, and then the stroke of the bow on a single string made the prison doors fly open and my heart could suddenly breathe the air of freedom.

Who needs an audience when the simple act of playing gives you something as valuable as that?

Today was the start of something new for me.  I went back to the music store and told them that there was no need to hold the 2nd flute for me, I had found what I was actually looking for.  They helped me pick out a few new things for my violin.  I requested to be put on a list to be contacted when they have a new violin teacher for lessons.

Something in me has settled down and is pleased that I’ve finally taken the first steps down this road.  In this I look forward to being a student.  I look forward to the whole journey, from learning how to properly hold the instrument to sassing it up with my devilish gypsy ways.

And yes, come Monday morning, I will get up to get ready for work just as I always do . . . but something new has started to blossom in my heart.  Something that I get to nurture and grow and care for, for the rest of my days.

Violin Awesomness

The Art Of Being Self

I stayed up waaaay too late last night.  I found a TV series on Netflix that has me completely enraptured.  I kept saying to myself, “Okay one more, but then I have to go to bed.”  I said that three times.  So, I finally listened to myself at 3:30am and went to bed.  My first alarm goes off at 5am.  (Yaaaay!)

It made for strange dreams and a little bit of a disorienting morning, but sometimes I need that to shake off the sludge that can collect and buildup on me.

Ever since Venus moved out of Aries and into Taurus (March 17), my feelings have turned to that of “art”.  Venus rules both Taurus and Libra.  They are both love feel good signs.  They rule throat and kidneys respectively.  If the pathway between the two are blocked or restricted in any way, it becomes more difficult for a person to “feel good”.  It becomes more difficult to have patience or to love or be open.  Think about how *loving* you feel when you’re in the middle of a horrible cold or flu, and you’ll get the idea.

Venus also rules the arts.  On March 31, Mars also moved into Taurus.  My feelings have moved even more solidly into the general topic of art.  The connection between feeling good, feeling love, and how much more naturally I wish to do something artistic the more I feel those things.

With my natal chart setup how it is, it has been suggested that I would be an excellent dancer (I adore dancing, but only when I’m alone).  I have many artistic inclinations.  However I also have a fear of doing anything personal or artistic or creative when there is an audience.  But with hard work, I can move so much into the art form that I’m doing, that I no longer care or worry about whether there is an audience because I find too much joy in doing the art itself to care what anyone else thinks about it.

With the current transits (where the planets currently are in the sky), I began to think of art in a different way.  I felt all of the creative and artistic energy that I give so little opportunity to be expressed in the world.  It’s like I hold it’s head under water trying to drown it.  Trying to make it go away so that I’m not forced to face my fears, my insecurities.

But this was exactly when the new understanding of art began to emerge from my thoughts.  Creativity.  Creativity is the act of birthing something new into the world.  Taking something that was in the ethers, in the unseen, and expressing it in some form in this world.  Making something out of seemingly nothing.

I often think of creativity and art as being an established form, such as visual arts, writing, dance . . . you know,  the arts.  I have spent a lot of time learning about and discerning the different energies I sense and then using that information to follow it further to see connections between things that I haven’t seen before.  So I used that learned ability to feel the energy simply known as ‘art’ inside of me and then opened up a space within to see what new information or connection it had to show or share with me.

You know how hard it can be to forgive someone who has hurt you or wronged you in some way?  How hard it can be to move past it or let go?  The work that goes into it?  The very act of doing that . . . that is creativity, that is art.  It is the same energy, exertion, and discipline used that a well received artist employs.

Have you ever seen the feet of a professional ballerina?  The fingers of an expert violinist?  It’s something personal inside that drives them to reach these levels and we see it physically in the beauty and refinement they bring into the world for both their own and other’s enjoyment.

Moving from a place of hurt or pain, into one of true forgiveness and letting go, is bringing something out of seemingly nothing.  Moving from a place of fear or terror in a situation, into one of peace and acceptance . . . that is an act of creation.  It is an art form.  The result of that hard work is seen in the character and personality of a person, and the beauty and refinement that person brings into the world that wasn’t there before.

Which brings me to this morning’s thoughts about art.

I was writing in my journal and reminding myself to settle down into my body and just be happy being me.  Not someone special, not someone who has to put on a show, not someone who has to know the answers or lecture . . . but just the art of being myself at all times with no pretenses.  It hit me only as I wrote it, just how true that statement is.  Learning to be myself has been in itself a lifelong art form.

I’ve seen my past as suffering and something I had to endure.  I’ve seen it as tragic and painful.  I’ve seen all of the immense and intense hard work I’ve put into myself in the past decade as healing.  But what I have not seen, is what it truly has been . . . a refining of self.

Adversity, struggle, pain, suffering, fear . . . these things teach us.  They make us stronger.  They remove what isn’t real or true about us.  When you survive something you didn’t think you could survive . . . when you heal from something that you thought would kill you . . . you become so much more than you were before.  When you start to learn how to bend in life, instead of break . . . that is when you truly start to live.

My physical body and incarnation at this time on Earth, is like an instrument that my soul and spirit are learning how to play and master.  Just like when I first learned how to play the flute, I would practice the 12 major scales and arpeggios over and over for hours.  The chromatic scale as many octaves as I could handle over and over.  Working out the weaknesses, the kinks.  Strengthening my embouchure.  Making my fingers more quick and nimble.  Increasing my capacity for breath and control.  Over years, coming together for longer sustained periods of what I can only describe as a state of grace . . . when the instrument, music, and my spirit merged into a single flow of being . . . and I was at peace with myself and the world.  I only knew warmth and love and expression of that love through my flute.

I am learning how to do that as a human.  How to master being who I really am as a soul while in human form . . . and the motivation being for the love and joy of the art itself when it all comes together into a state of grace and being.  The sum of my life . . . the sum of all I’ve been through and the sum of how I choose to use those experiences to become a more true expression of my soul while incarnated . . . that is my artistic expression.  It doesn’t matter where I’m at or what I’m doing . . . I can practice my art in all things and in all ways.  I don’t have to find the right occupation that will bring me happiness . . . I can learn how to be me and at peace with myself and life in whatever I do because that is the more true objective in my life.

I’m learning how to be in a state of being regardless of circumstances, not how to stop the circumstances from being.

Being a Cat