Photo I took in April of two of my goddess sisters- Sarah and Jaimie
What a year 2012 has been! I don't know about you, but I'm completely overwhelmed by the massive internal shifts that have taken place this year. 2012 has been huge
for me! Today I did some pretty intense work- taking stock of what actually happened for me this year, and what it meant to me. As many of you know, one of the wonderful things I discovered this year is the absolutely inspired work of Leonie Dawson
. Each year, she releases a workbook/calendar (and this year, she released TWO!) for dreaming up and then designing and creating your most gorgeous and vibrant year! When I discovered her 2012 Workbook earlier this year, I filled most of it out (even though the year was nearly halfway over already!) and watched as miracles occurred in my life. Actually, to be more accurate- I witnessed myself creating
those miracles I most desired and needed! There is magic in these little things, I tell ya!
Part of Leonie's wisdom is in the opening section of the workbook- it is devoted to honoring the lessons and magic of the year falling away, discovering what you want to take from it into your new year, and making room for all of the incredible, abundant things you will accomplish in 2013! Today, I took on the task of filling that section out- getting clear on what happened in 2012 and what it meant for me, letting go of the things that no longer work, choosing what lessons and beauty I will bring with me into 2013, and saying goodbye to what turned out to be a pretty epic year for me! I have to admit, it was so intense to actually look back and process through this momentous year, that afterwards I was exhausted and had to lie down for a while!
Want to know a secret? I was afraid to even begin looking at 2012. In many ways, this year pushed me to the very brink of what I could handle, and was filled with such deep pain and transformation, that I didn't know what I could possibly say about it. At first glance, all I could see was the heartbreak and disappointment and was afraid to look too closely at it. But I picked up my pen and got to work on it, and I found that the more I wrote about it, the more everything
about the year (including and especially the pain!) felt very very inspired and purposeful. I finally started to see how everything connected- how the moments that cleaved me in two prepared me for the great work of this year- rediscovering and recreating who I was. The dark moments created the opportunities for the greatest light, and the things that I treasure most about this year would not have been possible if I hadn't been broken first. It very much reminded me of the lessons I learned during the Kali meditation
I wrote about in August! The process was eye- and heart-opening, exhausting, and so deeply powerful. The only thing left to do now is to tell you all about it!
2012 was the year that I was broken apart. And 2012 was the year that I rebuilt who I am into someone stronger, more powerful, more inspired, and more vibrant than ever before!
This time a year ago, I was feeling small and stifled and not living with the kind of joy that I deserve. I was struggling. I WAS very much in love and living with my absolute best friend (of 15 years) and twin soul, Eric. I WAS experiencing love and beauty and kindness and sweetness, BUT- and I didn't see this until now- my soul needed so much more
in order to feel fulfilled and in line with my purpose! I was happy enough, things were going okay, but I didn't have the room I absolutely needed in order to learn and grow at the rate that was necessary. I felt stagnant. I couldn't put my finger on it yet, but I needed so much more.
I got exactly what I needed. And it DEVASTATED me.
Early in March, my best friend and love ended our romantic relationship. I was crushed
. This was someone I'd been in love with on and off for 15 years. This was my best friend in the world, the person I could tell anything to, share everything with, the person I loved seeing first thing in the morning and last thing at night, my partner in crime and the heart of my life. I'd had many dreams for our future. It's always a bit devastating when dreams die. He'd wanted me to continue living with him in the resort city deep in the Utah mountains where lived, but I knew immediately that I needed my own space in order to process through my pain and let go. So I chose instead to move into my parent's (quite spacious) basement- an hour and a half away- and they (quite generously) took me in. I couldn't afford the commute (financially or energetically), so in the move, I ended up losing the job that I'd had. My parents are allergic to some animals, so I had to leave behind my beloved pets. I lost so much during that time- a love, a home, a job, a way of life, a sense of self. I had no idea how to move forward. I was goo.
Jaimie, Sarah, and I in April, 2012
One thing the move did do for me was to bring me closer to my tribe of female friends- my "goddesses"- and THAT was the turning point. As I opened my heart to receive their wisdom and feel that surge of powerful feminine energy in my life, I was transformed. I began to take notice of the things that I most admired and respected in others, and began to find those same qualities in myself! I did everything I could to enhance and build on those things- and thus began the slow and arduous process of recreating who I was! I sought out wise women online and learned all I could think of about how happiness worked for other people- and began experimenting in my own life! I did deep soul work at this time, uprooting belief systems and ideals that were no longer in line with the kind of life that I wanted, letting go of things that no longer worked for me, and digging deep into the heart of me to discover what was truly important in my life. It was intense work, and so worth it, and it would not have been possible had my life not been so drastically altered. I finally had the freedom and the room I needed in order to grow.
Me with Audrie and Maria in April, 2012
And massive changes started taking place! I finally found a new job in my new city, which enabled me to finally join Leonie Dawson's Goddess Circle! This is when I filled out the 2012 workbook and began to plan out the magical things I would create during the rest of the year! I allowed myself to dream big and let the magic of the universe do its part, and together, we co-created an incredible year! I started my blog, and over the months, hundreds of gorgeous souls have visited this site! A good number of my friends and family members have been enormously supportive of this endeavor- leaving comments, offering kind words of guidance, sharing this page with their own friends- it's blown me away. I created an online Facebook group where incredible, strong and wise women gather to offer each other love and support! We now have 120 members! (If you would like to join, please message me on Facebook! I'd love to have you there!) I co-planned and celebrated what we call "Goddess Days" with my local tribe of inspiring women- celebrating the moon cycles and solar sabbats, gathering in ritual, engaging in meditation and song, sharing our hearts and insights as we learned and grew in harmony together! Thank you to Jaimie, Maria, Sarah, Karen, Katia, Delphi, Chandra, Brittanie and ALL the goddesses for sharing these special moments with me! I explored my creative and crafty side, creating (and selling!) cozy knitted and re-usable coffee sleeves, and super-charged magical chakra bracelets, and other cute and useful knick-knacks! I opened my own Etsy Shop
where I offer my lovingly created and magically charged wares! Many of the goddesses in my local tribe also create beautiful
and meaningful products, and I had the idea to gather all of us together and sell them at our local Pagan Pride Festival in Salt Lake City this summer- and we made it happen! We spent months preparing, and then offered our wares (and tarot readings) to our community! What a powerful accomplishment for us, and one that I learned immensely from.
JayC and I performing in "Don Juan Casanova"
For those of you who don't know me in person, among the many things I do, I am sometimes an actress. Often a frustrated one, as time and energy restraints often keep me from this beloved "hobby" of mine. But this fall, I was given the opportunity to give an emotional performance in a play written by a friend of mine entitled "Bob Juan Casanova." I had a fantastic time creating this theatrical experience with very dear friends, and actually gave a performance that I feel good about (a rare feat)! I pushed myself, and found that I was capable of more than I'd ever known before! This became true of all aspects of my life, in fact.
I made new friends with some of the most inspiring and gorgeous souls I've ever met, and spent time cultivating my dear and treasured friendships with people that I've known for years. I read amazing books, listened to amazing music, saw amazing movies and had a blast spending time with my loved ones! I spent quite a bit of time alone as well, getting deeply in touch with my heart and soul's needs. I began taking better care of my body, getting on a healthy sleeping schedule for the first time in my life and starting to learn about the importance of self-care! I explored my spirituality, got in touch with the love and wisdom of my spirit guides, and learned many fascinating and life-changing things... I opened my heart and my mind wide enough to let in miracles, and they came flooding in! Don't get me wrong- the year was intensely challenging and filled with many moments of pain and doubt, moments when I was sure I wasn't going to make it- but then I'd get through it anyway and choose to learn from the pain, and the universe richly rewarded my perseverance.
Me with my very best friend, Eric
And then, when the time came that the things that had been working STOPPED working, and I lost my job, and found myself on the brink of my sanity... I was no longer afraid to let everything go and start all over... AGAIN. And so it was that roughly six months from the time that I moved away, I found myself living once again with my best friend- this time as a platonic support system for each other. We had remained close (15 years of friendship isn't something you just throw away because the romantic aspect of your relationship didn't work out) and through all of the hardships that we'd faced throughout the year, we'd been able to be there for each other. And when things fell apart for me and I felt like I was going crazy and didn't know where to turn, he offered me his home and reminded me that everything was going to be okay. That was a dark time, but his friendship and belief in me was one of my greatest sources of light, until I could find it for myself again. After months of searching unsuccessfully for a job throughout two counties, he helped me find a job nearby within weeks, and I slowly began rebuilding for the second time. And so it's been for the past few months... slow and steady rebuilding.
At the Winter Solstice, I did a beautiful online ritual with the talented and inspired Sage Goddess
and, in meditation, my spirit guides told me that the time for being goo in a chrysallis was over- now is the time for me to step outside into my full power and become the goddess-woman that I'm meant to be, strong enough to share my gifts with and begin to bless the world! 2013 is going to be another epic year for me, and I know already that it will push me to the brink of what I can handle, BUT this time I know going in that I will only discover that I'm so much stronger than I'd ever imagined and that I have the capability to learn from darkness and emerge with more wisdom and compassion- that these are part of my gifts. An excerpt from my 2013 workbook: "I learned that I am truly a goddess with gifts to share and a purpose for being on this earth! I learned deeply the power of positive feminine relationships- how they can heal and inspire! I learned that I can have my heart broken apart and lose my entire sense of self and still live and learn and become even more!"
I feel ready now to step forward into a beautiful future and to create my incredible and magical 2013!
To you, dear readers, thank you for being part of this incredible journey that I've been on- through darkness and light, you have been there, offering words of support and encouragement and being my inspiration for sharing this crazy road that i'm on. You have shared your thoughts and your stories with me through comments and messages, and I could not be more honored to share this space with you. Here's to honoring the year that has been- and here's to celebrating the amazing year to come! I hope you'll continue to check in with me to see what comes next, and I hope that you'll share YOUR journey with the rest of us as well! Remember, who you are is a unique and beautiful gift- don't be afraid to shine
and share it with the world!
With so much love and good wishes for all of us, and with more gratitude than you will ever know,LindsayPS- If you would like to learn more about the Create Your Incredible Year Workbook and Planners (Life and Business editions!) by the inspired Leonie Dawson, please click here! You will find pages and pages of gorgeous, inspiring questions that will guide you to create your most vibrant and soulful year yet! (The link I posted is an affiliate link, which means that if her work resonates with you and you feel called to get these books for your own, I will receive a portion of the proceeds- and everyone wins! However, if for some reason affiliate links rub you the wrong way, please instead check out: http://leoniedawson.com/shop/kits/incredible-year-workbook-calendar/ . I'd hate for anyone to miss out on this remarkable opportunity to learn more about yourself and your power to create the life of your dreams! Here's to a gorgeous 2013!
Friends, how is this winter treating you?
Are you rushing around, trying to find the perfect gifts for family and friends, decorating your home and workspace, baking cookies for neighbors, dressing up for holiday party after holiday party? December is a unique time of year with so many holidays occurring for so many of us, and our days tend to be filled with lots of lights, gifts, tinsel, cookies, demands on our time, and a good amount of stress. This time of year calls for a LOT of energy, and ironically, most of us have less than normal.
It is winter now, and for many of us that means MUCH colder weather, and less and less sunlight to energize us. For me, deep in the Utah mountains now, it means lots of snow and ice, cold winds, and a distinct lack of motivation to accomplish things. I often find myself battling bouts of Seasonal Affective Disorder in the wintertime as well, as I know many of us do. It's a tricky time, especially when so many of us are being called towards our purpose now. What do I mean by that?
Astrologically, the sun has moved into Sagittarius, the sign ruled by Jupiter, planet of expansion; with the archer's arrow pointed towards the sky, directing us towards ideals and higher thoughts. Sagittarius is mutable fire, which gives weight to our desires, and in fact unites our desires with those of the rest of mankind, resulting in the communal "Christmas Spirit" (or Yule Spirit, if you prefer ;) ). Additionally, revolutionary Uranus just turned direct in cardinal fire Aries, which gives us the drive to act on our desires and make our dreams come true (Sagittarius can have a tendency to talk and talk about dreams without actually taking action- there's the mutable fire for you). Combine all of that with the energy of the New Moon in Sagittarius, which is the perfect time to begin new projects, especially ones with regards to our higher purpose in life, and it makes sense that I keep witnessing so many goddesses in my life who are stepping into their true power and purpose (seriously, it's happening a lot, folks).
Sounds like a perfect storm for making all of those holiday dreams come true, right? Right?!
It can be a bit more complicated than that. Winter is, from a nature standpoint, not typically a time of action and adventure. It is a time of hibernation, of rest and renewal, a time when we take a step back to assess what we've accomplished in the past year, look at what worked and what didn't, and begin preparing ourselves for our goals in the coming year. It's a time of reflection, the direction of North, under the wisdom of the bear, who takes all winter long to rest his weary bones before the return of spring.
So, while we're being inspired to take action towards making our dreams come true, we're having to struggle with our natural instincts towards calm, comfort, and quietude. We're being driven to do more, with less energy to accomplish it all. Is this true for you? How does this time of year affect your energy levels? For many of us, this calls for a balancing act of grounding
both exquisite acts of self-care. At this time of year, with so much emphasis on pleasing, caring for and meeting the needs of others in our lives (whether it's our boss, our extended family, our friends, or loved ones), that we often don't take the time we need to get in touch with ourselves, with our own needs. How do we do that?
One method is GROUNDING-
the act of connecting with Mother Earth by centering your energy in your body, getting in touch with your roots, your rhythms, with nature's healing energy and your own earthy nature, giving you a sense of of security and centered-ness, and of oneness with nature and humanity. When you feel frazzled and out of touch, or if you suffer from anxiety or stress this season, grounding is an excellent way to reconnect to your own power, giving you the strength and energy to accomplish more without pushing yourself past your limits. There are many methods for grounding, and I'll list some here. Keep in mind, however, that you are your own best teacher and that you will benefit most greatly from following your own instincts.
One of the best and most obvious ways to ground is through nature herself. When possible, get outside in the sunlight (if the sun is shining!), take a walk in the grass (barefoot, if it's warm enough where you live), put your hands on a tree, physically connect
with the healing energy of our mother earth. Of course, for many of us, all of this simply isn't possible this time of year, with the snow, ice, and cold air keeping us indoors for much of the time. If this is true for you, there is a method that works well indoors too. Sit cross-legged on the ground, or in a chair with your back straight and feet flat on the ground. Close your eyes, take deep breaths, and imagine that you are a tree, with roots extending down past the floor and into the earth beneath you, reaching way down into the ground. Focus on sending any excess energy, fear, anxiety, or stress down into the earth, much like compost that isn't of use to us, but can be transmuted into nutrition by the earth's healing power. The earth can take any negativity and knows what to do with it, so feel free to send it all
. You are safe and will not harm anyone with this act. Once you are ready, imagine that the earth is sending you the nutrients you need up through your roots and into your body. The earth offers you love, balance, peace, and light, and any other energy you may be in need of. She has plenty, so don't feel guilt in accepting what you need. When you feel revitalized, offer thanks, and give yourself a hug. Do any other action you feel called to in order to complete the energy exchange.
Another way to ground is to get in touch with your own body. Eat, drink- engage your physical senses, and nurture your body. Take a walk or hike, practice yoga, and remember to breathe
. Breathing is vitally important to our well-being, and most of us rarely get the oxygen we truly need. Take long, deep breaths through your nose and fill your diaphragm, hold for a few moments, and exhale deeply through the mouth, making any sound that feels natural. Take the time to move and stretch your body, and learn to recognize its needs. Give yourself the rest you need, even and especially when that means more than is usual. Thank your body for the gifts that it gives you, delight in the senses of smell, taste, and touch, and practice exquisite self-care.
A great way to ground, particularly if you enjoy meditation and energy work, is to activate and balance your base or root chakra. If you are not familiar with chakras, they are energy centers placed throughout your body, each addressing different issues and concerns. The root chakra is located at the base of the spine and is known in Sanskrit as the Muladhara Chakra. To activate, get into a comfortable position, close your eyes, and begin breathing deeply. Concentrate on the energy center at the base of your spine, opening downwards. Imagine that it is a four-petaled lotus flower of vermillion red. Breathe and see the lotus flower slowly spinning. As it spins, it opens to reveal a ruby-red crystal shining brightly within. Continue to breathe and feel the chakra spin at a pace that is right and comfortable for you. Repeat to yourself this affirmation: "I balance my vital energies and establish my Karmic purpose on Earth." When you feel balanced and revitalized, take your hands and place them over your head, then sweep them down over your body, picking up any excess energy and then grounding it in the earth by placing your hands flat on the floor and sending the energy into the earth. For a daily reminder, or to activate your chakras using gemstone beads, try wearing a chakra bracelet, which I sell in my Etsy shop: Boho Goddess Garden
(shameless self-promotion! Yay!).
To go deeper into your practice of grounding, try utilizing the wisdom of stones and herbs. This is by no means a comprehensive or exhaustive list of such tools, but instead, gentle encouragement and ideas based on what works for me and those I love, in the hopes that you will find what works for you!
How to utilize the wisdom of stones: You may want to try holding a stone or crystal in your hands as you meditate, or place them under or on your feet as you relax or practice other grounding actions. You can also choose to keep them with you for an extended amount of time- in your pocket or a special place in your purse as you go about your day, or even in a pouch around your neck if the stones are small enough! You can also find beautiful stone and crystal jewelry all over the internet or at your local health and wellness store.
Which stones to use: One of my goals here is to promote a healthy balance of grounding and revitalizing energy to help you through the winter months. To that end, I've chosen some stones that I believe serve that dual purpose: Garnet and Red Tiger's Eye. Both are (usually) a vibrant and gorgeous red color, stimulating the root chakra and bringing to mind our connection with the earth. Garnet
in particular is highly grounding and protective when found in the red varieties (there are also black green and orange varieties, but I prefer red for our purposes here), and is the stone I chose to utilize when creating my root chakra bracelets. Red Tiger's Eye
is a new discovery for me, and I am loving the effects! It is beautiful, with its bright bands of shimmering red, highly motivating, powerful, and stimulating for a sluggish sex drive as well! Some other stones to try for pure grounding and protective energy are Black Tourmaline
and Smoky Quartz.
If you find that you are too
grounded and are feeling slow and sluggish, try some of these purely energizing stones- Citrine, Carnelian,
Also, while discussing this with a friend, she mentioned that she felt really called to recommend Ammolite,
and I'm beginning to see why! It is referred to as the "Seven-Color Prosperity Stone" and contains hues of the entire rainbow, each color representing something different and all together, stimulating each chakra. This stone certainly packs a punch! See if it calls to you.
How to utilize the wisdom of herbs: There are many ways to use the wisdom of herbs, and not every practice is suitable for every herb. Do your research, experiment, and see what calls to you! Some favorite practices for me are to infuse the herbs in a tea (ALWAYS check to make sure that the herb you are using is safe for ingestion), or steep in a bath. I also will keep the herbs with me in a pouch in my pocket or purse, or burn as incense on a coal (keep in mind that herbs smell differently when they burn).
Which herbs to use: The first herb that comes to mind is Sage,
as it grounds and protects, but also clears away negative energy. Native Americans will burn Sage in a bundle called a Smudge Stick and waft the smoke towards whatever needs cleansing energy. Often bundled with Sage is Lavender
, which has the added benefits of peace, relaxation, and healing. Another great grounding herb to try is Sandalwood
, which is renowned for it's lovely fragrance, and has very protective, powerful, and courageous properties! Cedar
is another tree herb known for it's fragrance, and aids in purifying, protecting, and enhancing psychic abilities. Lastly, I want to mention Mint
, which has long been used in healing potions and mixtures- it is said to relieve headaches, cleanse the energy of a room when burned as incense, and has very potent healing properties. Any of these herbs alone could be utilized in your grounding practices, or try combining them for extra potent effects!
What are your favorite grounding practices? How do you stay healthy and happy in the winter months? What can you give to yourself this season to help you feel your most vibrant and beautiful self? Remember that you are precious and valued and your gifts are needed in this world! You are part of what is worth celebrating this holiday season, and who you are is the true gift that you offer to those you love! Don't hesitate to ask for assistance when it is needed, but also keep in mind that you are stronger than you realize, and fully capable of realizing your dreams!
Happy holidays to you, friends! Thank you for being part of this life-changing year for me, and for supporting me as I pursue my own dreams. I will write a post soon updating my progress! Hope you and yours feel the love this season!
It's time to be honest. It comes and goes, still. It has not gone away. And still I descend into the Underworld to meet with and learn from Persephone, and still I am a puddle of goo in the midst of a chrysalis. About a month ago, I sat in the dark of a canyon in the middle of the night with a handful of pills and a knife in my hand, and I thought, "This again?" And I knew I needed a change. Like, desperately. I knew in my soul that if I didn't take immediate action to change everything in my life that wasn't making me happy, I was going to die.
And so I laid it all down- first the pills and the knife. And then my home and life as I knew it. And then my ideas about what my future would be like. And then my ideas of who I would be, and who I was, and what I meant. Until finally, I wasn't any of those things anymore. I wasn't anything, frankly, but a puddle of unformed goo, waiting to be remade into something new. Something entirely different than I could imagine. Something more free.
I left my car, and nearly all of my belongings. I only took those things I knew I'd need in the next few weeks- my costumes for a play I was in, good walking shoes, toothpaste and such. A few books I'd been making my way through, chakra bracelets I'd been making and selling, my knitting. And I went for an adventure- couch surfing for weeks (at times even staying with people I'd never met), getting rides to performances of the play I was in, walking for hours to apply for jobs, never knowing where I'd land next or if I'd be able to make it through another week, just... going. Never in my life have I felt more stress or anxiety, or felt less grounded or at home in my self. I just kept moving, keeping my eye only on the next step, and then the one after that. Thanks to the generosity and kindness of so many unexpected people, I managed to meet all of my obligations over those weeks- I never missed a performance (even got a couple nice reviews of my acting), I kept selling my bracelets, and I got to the end of that phase without being too scathed.
Finally, I found a spot to settle for a bit, again, thanks to the generosity of some dear and kind friends. On the couch of my best friend, deep in the mountains, far away from all the things I was looking at, I found a tiny little corner to stay in. I even found a job within about a week, after months of looking in both Utah and Salt Lake Counties. And so I'm adjusting yet again to yet another new life, and a new idea of myself and who I want to be.
Somehow in the midst of all of this change, things so deep in my heart have naturally begun to fall away to make room for new things yet to come. This is exciting. I am creating space to make a life where I can fit more easily and more honestly. A life where I can be exactly who I am and feel good about that. And if there is not yet a corner of the world that I fit into, I will create that space within myself, so I can always be the wild and free and true me, even within my own mind, without always trying to adjust to fit my outside circumstances.
Last night, my best friend and I talked about what happiness meant to us. Even between two as close (and often as similar) as we, there are stark differences among the similarities. Happiness is such a personal matter, and I believe it's important to personalize and tailor your happiness to fit YOU. For me, happiness is a lot about being able to enjoy my own company and love my own self, regardless of what the world outside is trying to shake up in me. There's also a big component of wanting to help and inspire others to do the same- to recognize their own unique innate beauty and enjoy and love themselves. That's part of my recipe. I wonder- what's yours?
What does happiness mean to you? What lengths are you willing to go to to find, discover, or create that kind of happiness for yourself? I'd love to hear any insights you have in the comments below.
Wherever you are in you journey, please know that you are loved and appreciated for the unique YOU-ness that you contribute to this wild and lovely world. Thank you for being you. You are a gift. Please don't stop sharing your you!
Art by Susan Seddon-Boulet
Who is she? How can she possibly be understood? She goes into the Underworld one thing, and comes out something else entirely. No longer part of one world alone- not either world any longer- but belonging to both at once. Her mouth no longer speaks of innocence and purity, but of a knowing, a deep and dangerous understanding of what goes on underneath, and she can never again be the same. No longer Kore, no, even her name no longer fits her. Like teeth she has outgrown, falling out of her mouth. She is something darker now, wiser, infinitely more powerful. It takes time, it must. It always takes time for the caterpillar to undo itself and become something more- more beautiful, more true, more free. To grow a new body, a new life, a new self.
We cannot remain children forever.
Not forever, but once she was a child. Once she played with wild abandon among the flowers, felt the blooming all around her as the sun touched the earth and created things like morning and dew. The world was bright and full of promise, full of hope and infinite possibility. She must have dreamed and wondered what her future would hold.
It's tragic that such a lovely world was ripped from her, torn away without any warning. One moment the world is bright, the next all is dark, and never again will she experience the sun in exactly the same way. Yes, that's tragic. It always is when things must change. When everything we know is lost to us. When even our "selves" have been destroyed. She was no longer Kore. But she had the opportunity to become something new.
You see, she is often miscast as a simple victim. As the poor sad maiden with innocence lost. But though victimized she was, she did not stay that way. Not for long. She had a choice. And like Eve before her, she ate of the forbidden fruit. In some circles, this is linked further, with the pomegranate (and not the apple) representing the fruit of knowledge that banishes Eve and her husband from the Garden, from the only life they knew. Again, tragic. But without it, what would things be? Who would we be without knowledge of our darker sides?
Even Peter Pan's dear Wendy makes the choice to leave the child-like fun of Neverland and return to the cold harsh reality of the world to do the hard work of growing up. Another child taken from the world she knew into another, where she ultimately makes the choice to become an adult. In fact, Wendy even plans to return to the bright and shining Neverland each year in the springtime for "spring cleaning" and to return to her home in the real world when the season is over. It's not her fault that Peter, in all his childishness, simply forgets to return for her.
Persephone does return to bring in the spring each year, and to welcome new growth and blooming. She is the herald of our return to light and growth. She brings with her the light and warmth to create our world anew each year, and that is part of the gift she gives us- the green of the grass, the sweetness of the flowers. It is part of her beauty. Let us celebrate spring while it is upon us, let us run with wild abandon through fields of flowers, and relish in the sun's rays. And then when the sun goes down, let us celebrate the gifts that the moon have to give to us as well- the mysteries, the dark shadows, the deep and dangerous knowing that comes after a tragedy has befallen us.
For that is the other part of Persephone's gift to us. As she grows and matures into her role as Queen of the Underworld, she also becomes Queen of the seasons of her life. She accepts the darkness, the strange and powerful world which has adopted her to rule, and she rules with compassion and gentle understanding. When springtime comes, she again becomes our princess of life and renewal, and then when it's time, she retreats into the Underworld, which has become her other home. What would life be if there were no death? If there were no sleep, no rest for the weary, no time to reclaim ourselves and regroup? In each of our lives there are seasons, and, like Persephone, we have the opportunity to learn to change with the seasons, to swim with the current, to become one with our selves as whole beings, rather than simply embracing the sweet and spitting out the bitter.
The autumn equinox fast approaches. Persephone has done her work in the land of the living and now prepares to return to those who need of her light in the Underworld. In what ways can you take advantage of the gift of fall and winter, of the restful quiet of the world growing cold? The leaves begin to change color and fall, the nights become more brisk and the air is full of change. It is the time of the harvests, time to reap what we have sown. What gifts can you give yourself as a reward for all of your hard work and effort? What are you reaping now and what do you want to reap in the future? It is time to rest and regroup, to plan for the future, to face our dark sides and learn deeper lessons about our true nature.
And through it all, Persephone whispers that, like the moon, she is always with us, even when we cannot see her light. This is the waxing and waning of the Goddess, the cyclical center of ourselves, the constant ebb and flow of life within us and all around us. There is a time for all things, and when we learn that and begin to take advantage of the opportunities presented to us, we become the Queens of the seasons of our lives.
How can you become the Queen of the seasons of your life? What lesson does Persephone have for you?
With love and light,
When I was 19, I made up a game while on a road trip with friends. Teenage dramas were infiltrating our happy getaway, and tensions were running high. So, when my brother's Jeep broke down in the middle of the Utah desert, I decided to try something fun. I had a video camera with me, and I decided to tape each person saying one nice thing about one of the others in our group, each in turn. Just one thing that they appreciated about each other. First it was Jerry Appreciation time, where everyone expressed their good feelings for him. Then Tink Appreciation time. Then Eric, Marshall, John, Harley, even me. At the end, the person who was being appreciated had to say one nice thing about themselves. :)
Yeah, it's cheesy, and not everyone I know would probably agree to participate in the first place. But at the time, it seemed to ease some of the harsher moments of what we were going through. And later, whenever things got difficult, I'd watch those videos, listen to how we loved and joked and cared for each other, and it always made the world feel a little warmer.
It brought me such joy, that I held on to the tradition. I've tried to keep it for special occasions- I'll sometimes try to play on road trips, on holidays, or ask that we play for my birthday in lieu of gifts, although I have had the odd night where we play just for fun after a glass or two of wine. It's my absolute favorite tradition, and it makes my heart just shine to hear how my loved ones appreciate and care for each other and themselves.
This year, I turned 30. While drinking some delicious wine, and smoking some delicious hookah (flavored tobacco smoked out of a gorgeous water pipe), I asked if we could do Appreciations. And so we spent the evening appreciating the little things- a person's cute mannerism or way of going about life, style, taste in music, books, whatever- to the bigger things- the way a person expressed themselves boldly to the world through their art, their music, the way they loved, the way they changed our lives. We laughed and cried. It was one of my best birthdays ever.
We saved the Lindsay appreciations for last. Honestly, I felt terribly shy and spent the entire time with my hands clasped together along my jaw, like a cartoon child. One by one, my friends told me what they loved about me, until I was shaking and near tears with gratitude and love. When it finally came time for me to say what I appreciated about myself, all I could say was that I truly have the best taste in friends. I firmly believe that I know some of the most brilliant, beautiful, talented, loving people that exist in the whole world. And I want to express my appreciation for them.
To my loved ones near and far- you have touched my life in ways you can't even imagine. You have altered and affected me so deeply in such beautiful ways. Everything I love about myself, I owe it to those who inspired me, encouraged me, believed in me, and helped me to see it in myself in the first place. You are incredible people with so much to offer the world, and I feel so blessed to have had you play roles in my story. It's better because of you. Please never forget that.
With all the love in my heart,
I've started writing about it a dozen times. Started, then stopped, knowing that I couldn't yet fully express all that I'm going through- all of the massive changes, transformations that are taking place in my life and within me. I think it's time now to try again.
I've noticed a very obvious trend in all my attempts at expression lately- transformation. From butterflies to Persephone to the big Saturn return stuff, it's all there, right up front. I learn by gradations and in waves, over and over again, so this may become overkill for you by the time I'm through. Not so for me. I learn one part of a lesson only to have it hit me over the head again shortly after, as if someone's trying to tell me, "You don't have it all figured out yet! Dig deeper!" And so I do, and sure enough, there's another layer to the theme to explore and then process through.
The other week, I did a meditation wherein I met the Goddess Kali. If you are unfamiliar with this fierce and powerful figure of the Hindu faith, you really should learn more about her- she is awe-some and amazing! Unfortunately, I am no expert, but can only guide you to t
his article for more information: http://hinduism.about.com/od/hindugoddesses/a/makali.htm
In the meditation, I was on top of a mountain, surrounded by a ferocious storm. When I met Kali, I prepared to face my fears with her strength of power to help me through. Instead, she turned to me, and with a massive ceremonial axe, she cleaved me in two. Naturally, I couldn't have been more shocked. She then told me that I must put myself together again. A little heartbroken at how broken and helpless I felt and despairing at all the psychic work I must do, I took a little needle and thread and began sewing my two parts together. However, it didn't take me long to realize in my heart that if I kept stitching myself together this way, I would still only be a shadow of myself- patchworked, broken, incomplete. It would work, but not well, and not for long.
So I did the next thing that came to mind. I removed the needle and thread and watched it disappear, and I melted myself down into a puddle on the ground. And in that moment, I thought of the caterpillar, and of the massive and painful transitions he must make to become a butterfly. I thought of myself as a puddle of goo in a cocoon, awaiting transformation (there's that word again). And slowly, slowly, I began building myself a new body of light out of that puddle. A body made out of light- myself, but brighter and more powerful and free than ever before. And in that moment, Kali took my hand and together on the top of that storming mountain, we began the process of facing my fear, only this time, it was both of us who were strong enough and powerful enough to take them on. The meditation turned out to be wildly successful.
(I should take a moment here to note that this meditation (which my mind kind of took over for awhile) was one I did as part of Leonie Dawson's C
reative Goddess E-Course (http://tinyurl.com/6uldfzq
) - it is absolutely incredible and inspiring- if you're interested in exploring your own creativity in a spirited and vibrant way, please check it out!)
As I face yet another transitional period in my life beginning now, I'm reminded of this powerful inner experience and what it means for me- that sometimes being torn apart is the absolute best thing that can happen to you. It puts you in a position to let go of who you think
you are on all your levels, and to create a brand new, vibrant you, more powerful and full of light than you were previously aware was even possible. It's an opportunity for growth, and it can be beautiful if you let it.
I'm going to take this new opportunity and try to move through it with all the grace and strength I can muster, and build up an even brighter, truer me. May we all find the strength to do this when the opportunity presents itself. Sometimes it's the very best gift we can give ourselves in our times of need.
For those of you in a puddle right now, know that I am sending you light and strength and love to aid you on your journey to rebirth. I may not know you personally, but I believe in you and I am grateful for you. You have the strength to get through this, and you will. You will become a beacon of light for those who follow, and we will all be better for it.
With much love,
I wasn't sure I wanted to write about this. At all. Like, ever. It's difficult to talk about. Hell, it's difficult to think about these days. But here's the thing- I have Bipolar Disorder.
After more than ten years of mis-diagnosing, mis-managing, and mis-medicating, I was finally diagnosed with Bipolar II Disorder in December of 2006 (I made the switch into Bipolar I after my first psychotic manic episode in 2010). At the time I was diagnosed, I was engaged to be married, preparing to be a step-mom, living with two of my best friends, and still struggling (as always) to hold my life together. Not two months later, my fiancee broke up with me, I never got to say goodbye to the two amazing boys I was preparing to be a step-mom to, I was going through the highs and lows of trying to find the right medication (which took the better part of a year) and my life and brain fell massively and spectacularly to pieces. Ever the scholar, I took my new diagnosis to heart and decided to become an excellent student of my own condition. I read books, I researched online, I found people (just a few) with the same disorder and soaked up their experiences. I wanted to become an expert.
Instead, I was accused of being addicted to my disorder. Not by people truly close to me, people who shared my life with me and witnessed first hand the cost of what I was going through. But by people who saw me struggling and thought they had the right answer for me. People who wanted to help, but instead made it vastly more difficult for me to be able to draw the line between what was me and what was the Bipolar. It's something that still challenges me every day, to be honest. But I feel I'm closer to it now than I ever have been. In those days, it wasn't so clear. In fact, it was a huge fog of pain, confusion, and not knowing what was real or what was in my head. My intention was to own my disorder, so it didn't own me. What ended up happening was that I internalized it to the point where I couldn't distinguish who I was anymore. People who wanted to fix me advised me not to acknowledge it, to put it far from mind and from peering eyes. That didn't seem to help either. I was lost.
I would have periods of hypo-mania and think that I could conquer the world- everything was sparkly, magical, imbued with secret meanings just for me. Then I would crash or have a major depressive (God forbid, even a psychotic or suicidal) episode and promptly lose my job/ fail out of school/ push friendships to the brink with my excessive neediness/ anxiety/ craziness. I would get just terrible episodes of social anxiety and not be able to leave my house for weeks- even for parties, concerts, events long planned and very happily anticipated. I would sit at home, longing to go out and spend time with my friends and cry for hours because I just couldn't make myself go. I would drive to work or to some other engagement and look for ways to crash my car without hurting anyone else, just so I would have a reason not to be there. I'm telling you, there were times I was all the way outside of my damn mind.
Finally in February of 2010, I had a true psychotically manic episode, complete with spontaneous hallucinations, which were so vivid, I was convinced that someone had somehow sneaked a hit of acid into my drink while I wasn't looking... until the hallucinations and paranoia lasted for days. Then a week. Not consistently, but over and over. I was convinced that my life was imaginary- that I'd been hypnotized in the past and the last few years were nothing but an elaborate hypnotic trick. I had elaborate visual hallucinations- saw myself in a rainforest when I was really in bed, felt tiny men (I called them "dozers") digging through my abdomen and down into my mattress. It was terrifying.
After the episode ended, I started to get serious about my condition again- found a new doctor, stopped drinking with friends, got on a regular cycle with my medication, joined online support groups and generally started taking my mental health seriously. Still, I struggled seriously. And at any mention of my disorder or its affects (what I called being self-aware and taking responsibility for my own mental health), I was accused of using my diagnosis as a crutch. And again, I would take on too many projects trying to prove myself (even small projects), push myself too hard, and have major depressive/ suicidal breaks. There are episodes that are still too scary and too painful to discuss. So I won't for now.
I used to speak openly and freely about my diagnosis, hoping that if people knew what they were getting into right up front, they wouldn't be scared away later when they encountered my darker side. Then I got scared to talk about it at all.
Then... finally, after an extreme episode near the beginning of 2011, I had a pretty good year. Even after my life fell apart earlier this year, I didn't have an episode- either manic or depressive. I didn't lose my mind. I just waded through the pain until it receded. I slowly rebuilt and put the pieces of my life back together. I got myself a job, got myself together, and began to prove to myself that I could really live "normally." And I had a really good month. After over a year with no major incidents (just what I think of as "normal" highs and lows), I honestly thought to myself-
"I'm cured. That Bipolar part of my life? That's over now. Now I get to be normal like everyone else, and never have to worry about the really scary stuff. It's over!"
And then I broke. The other week, after days of building pressure and anxiety, my brain just... broke on me. And I had another episode. It was scary, and I won't talk about the details yet. Even more than the incident itself, I felt betrayed by my brain for not functioning "normally" the way I wanted it to. For reverting back into the scary Bipolar stuff when I least expected it to. For going "crazy" yet again, when I was hoping to never have that experience again.
The thing is, I might. It's difficult to talk about, because I was hoping that it was a part of my past, and not something I would ever have to discuss in the present tense. But the truth is that I have Bipolar Disorder, and so far, it hasn't gone away. It might always be a part of me. But it's only a PART. It's part of my challenges, and part of my blessings, and I must keep that in mind. It doesn't define me. But that doesn't mean that it's disappeared. It only means that I must work harder to manage the symptoms and to take care of myself and take responsibility for my psychological well-being.
The truth is that I'm a beautiful, powerful goddess of infinite love and light, and this happens to be part of my story. If it's part of your story or someone you know, please try to know with your heart that you are not alone. I write about this here so you will know that you have a friend, that you have support, that you are deserving of all the love and amazing things that life has to offer. It will get better. It will be difficult too, but you are strong enough to handle it. You are much stronger than you know. And with all the love in my heart, I am sending you hope and blessings right now just for reading this and keeping an open mind. You are loved. I may not know you, but I love you. I am strong enough to love you just the way you are, just for being you. Without knowing it, you are still shining your light in the world, just by being glorious YOU, and that is a beautiful thing.
If you have something you'd like to say, please leave it in the comments below. I heard someone say once that stories are powerful, and that someone might need to hear yours in order to heal. I sincerely write this with the hope that we heal together. We can be who we are and still be deserving of love and beauty. I know that I face dark times ahead, but I believe with my heart that I have the strength to see them through, even if things get rocky. I want you to know that I believe that for you too. We will make it through. We WILL.
With love, compassion, and renewed hope,
Jaimes laughs with her whole heart!
One thing that I want to do with this blog is to create a community atmosphere of beauty and support- to introduce you to the goddesses in MY world who have supported and inspired me, so that even if you don't happen to have such women in your life at the moment, you can be inspired by some truly incredible women. And let me tell you that I am blessed to know some truly amazing and wonderful women, who I'm sure will fill your hearts with as much joy as they do mine!
In that spirit, let me introduce you to the first of the goddesses in our little garden here- Jaimes, my Venus sister (as Taurus and Libra, we are both ruled by the love planet), dear friend, and one of the women in my life who most embodies the goddess spirit!
I've known Jaimes since she was a teenager, and have watched as she has grown and evolved into her true spirit- a spirit of joy, adventure, learning, and FUN! Her nickname is Rainbow Weather, reflecting the joy and excitement that is her energy- she will always find a way to make you smile, make you think, and make you feel like the true goddess that you are. She sees beauty in everything and has the courage to express that in so many forms- she is an painter, a jewelry artist, tarot reader, and cultivator of incredible relationships. She lives her life in resonance with the earth itself and is a true bohemian woman (although she'd call herself a hippie)! She's never afraid to explore the world, to expand her mind or heart, and her spontaneous energy gives me the freedom to make real my dreams (rather than just ruminate on them, which I have a serious tendency to do). She is beauty in ACTION and a true inspiration to me. I feel so lucky to have her in my life and hope that her words will inspire you in your life!
Jaimes and I sometimes look like sisters!
To see what goddess-hood meant to my friends and to help you get to know them better, I asked them a few questions. Here's what Jaimes had to say:
1. To start with, what's your sign?
"Libra - Ruled by Venus - Keywords: balance, relationships, graceful, art, beauty, dichotomy, indecision, two-sided, idealistic, judgement."
2. What does being a goddess mean to you?
"Being a goddess means doing what I love, to keep inspired so I can inspire others around me. Having self respect, for the inner goddess can only emerge when we feel powerfully grounded within ourselves. Practicing spirituality, and more importantly "practicing what I preach", so ideas can be manifested practically down to earth. Manifesting consciously, because if we really are goddesses incarnate, our thoughts, feelings, words and actions have much more impact on our lives than we realize. There is magic all around, and to be a goddess is to feel it with every fiber of your being!
To participate in life, and not just observe it is to awaken the inner creator inside the layers of the soul.To be a joyful influence on the world around me, for what we put out comes back magnified. To have a pure intent, for highest good and harming none, never to encroach upon the will of another. To remember that LOVE is the driving force of life, that it can heal all wounds. To have compassion, for compassion is love's ultimate healing tool. To forgive, for in forgiving we set ourselves free. To find my true will, to live my dharma, and to express it in the most beautiful way."
Photo art by Adam Scholle.
3. What makes you feel like a goddess?
"The earth beneath my feet, the soft grass, the light breeze, the warm sun and my spirit glowing inside of me! I feel like a goddess when I honor nature, dancing with the shifting of the seasons. I feel like a goddess when I face my fears and realize there was more light in the depths of my soul than I could have ever imagined. I feel like a goddess when I stare up at the full moon, letting its rays wash over me and knowing that I reflect the light of the divine too. I feel like a goddess when I allow myself to heal wounds of the past and let my inner child breathe easy again. When I'm sleeping under the stars, feeling open and free to dream. When I'm gathered with other goddesses and we empower each other, bring each other to new insights and new heights of imagination and wonder. I feel like a goddess when giving loving service and devotion to my fellow gods and goddesses, hoping to brighten someone's day or bring understanding through true caring. I feel like a goddess when I feel nurtured and when I nurture, and when I remember that we are all nurtured by the same central source. I feel like a goddess when I remember that I am an instrument of the divine, that the same spark that fuels all life is alive within me, and to respect that fact, for it brings great responsibility. Taking responsibility for my own life makes me feel like a goddess, and changing my destiny for the better is empowering. When I feel empowered, I hope to empower others. That is what makes me feel like a goddess."
Jaimes as the butterfly goddess she is.
4. Which goddesses/wise women are you most inspired by?
"Lately that is a rather fluid answer.. It used to be Radhe or Lakshmi, or at times Kali, and outside Hinduism I have loved Diana, Isis, Cerridwen, Aphrodite, Mother Moon, there are so many goddesses for so many different things! But lately I have been inspired by the Earth herself in relationship with the Sky, something more like both of them, you could call it the Universe or the Great Spirit. something that goes beyond gender, beyond the limits of time and space. I pray to this be-ing because it is within that place that we become so connected that we are one with creation, and that is a powerful place of love. It is an unlimited source to draw upon, and more importantly and unlimited source to be grateful for, and to to send all the love in my heart and be sure that it will come back in a picture even more beautiful than before."
Jaimes embraces the setting sun
5. If you could say one thing to your goddess sisters, what would it be?
"To love yourself, to appreciate yourself, and to never forget that the face in the mirror is the face of the goddess manifest! To never let yourself think of yourself as less than you are, for each woman has a gift - the power to love, the power to heal, the power to change the world. Remember to empower each other, and not let the little things get in the way of your devotion to living your highest truth. To be compassionate, to forgive, and to learn to let go and move forward. To have the courage to be happy, to dare to think new thoughts about yourselves and the world around you, to go to places within yourself that you never dared dip your toes in before. There is so much power and beauty all around, just waiting to be expressed through the loveliest of vessels - you! Let yourself live it, live it, live it!"
6. If you were a deity, what would you embody? (Goddess of Love, Music, Rain, WHATEVER!)
"If I were a goddess, I would embody the rainbow! I am rainbow weather after all! And it's because I love color, and I feel like my life purpose is to be an instrument of the divine, to help people take their light and put it into something beautiful and full of magic. The rainbow is a bridge between here and the other side, and the other side is definitely very present in my life. Heaven is in our hearts if we can only open them!"
Thank you Jaimes for sharing your heart and wisdom with us! I feel so inspired and lightened by your words!
Please leave a comment for Jaimes below and let us know what your thoughts on these subjects are! And stay tuned for the next in our Boho Goddess Garden interview series!
When I was 15, I went on a river trip with my younger brother, older sister, her then-fiancee, and a family friend, Larry, with two of his children. For roughly one and a half days, we floated peacefully down the Green River in Utah through the most picturesque red rock landscape with only the occasional wildlife for company. I spent hours laying on my back, floating downstream, watching the trees pass overhead and feeling more peaceful than I'd ever felt in my life. We stopped on a shoreline and dug our toes into the mud; my sister (a budding filmmaker) recorded it all on her vintage video camera. I fell asleep in the raft while it rained lightly, woke up under an umbrella and read a beat-up second-hand copy of "Valley of the Dolls" wrapped in a plastic bag, and waited for the sun to reappear. It was heaven.
And then came the mosquitoes.
We found out later that the mosquitoes on the river that weekend were the worst they'd been in a hundred years. It may as well could have been a thousand years, or a million. We were sure that the mosquitoes were the worst they'd been since the dawn of time, and that they were emissaries of satan himself sent to torture us. I can't remember how many mosquito bites we each got, but we did take the time to count them once we'd gotten safely home. Hundreds, I'm sure, and I'm truly not exaggerating. Our peaceful river trip had become a gauntlet of torture and pain, each stinging bite taking us further away from the reverie we had so enjoyed at the beginning of our trip. Night fell and we made camp as far away from the water as we could manage, burrowing deep into sleeping bags and zipping the tent closed tightly. It helped a minimal amount, and the adults chose to stay awake to look after us miserable kids.
Still, we had precious few hours of fitful sleep before it became too much to bear and we gave up.
We packed up camp and got back on the river as soon as the sky began to lighten, hoping to make it to our exit point as soon as possible and get home to tend our wounds. Everyone seemed miserable, grumbling and complaining about the pain, the lack of sleep, each other... anything was cannon fodder at that point. And then from ahead I heard a loud cry of what I assumed to be frustration, but what turned out to be joy.
In the raft ahead of me, Larry called out a series of gratitude unlike anything I'd ever encountered. "I love this river! I love this sky! I love this view! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!"
It went on for a number of minutes. At first, my jaw dropped, bewildered, wondering if he was being facetious or ironic. There certainly could be no cause for joy at such a miserable moment in all of our lives. However, it slowly dawned on me that not only was he being genuine, he was right
The water, although swarming with thousands of mosquitoes, was certainly clear and beautiful. The sky was filling quickly with sunlight and becoming a gorgeous shade of sapphire- not just blue, but sapphire! The view was not to be underestimated- the red of the rocks set against the green of the trees and the sapphire sky... suddenly every color seemed to enhance and heighten the others, every tree and cloud seemed imbued with a new kind of beauty; even the mosquitoes seemed to let up for a few minutes to let us enjoy the truly breathtaking sights. More likely, we just stopped noticing them.
That was the first moment in my life I began to understand the power of gratitude, especially at the unlikeliest of times. J
ohn "Halcyon" Styn (http://JohnStyn.com
), love warrior, leader of http://Hugnation.com
, and Burning Man enthusiast, talks often about the concept of "crap or cone." Basically it states that at all moments you have two things going on- you have a delicious ice cream cone in one hand, and a big piece of poop on your shoe. It's where you choose to place your attention that determines how happy you are. You can choose to do many things in that situation, all of which are acceptable, it just depends on how happy you want to be at that moment. You can complain about the crap, you can do something to fix the situation, or you can ignore your shoe for a few minutes and concentrate on the delicious ice cream before it melts. I could go on.
On the river that morning fifteen years ago, Larry showed us how to enjoy the ice cream cone. There may have been perfectly valid reasons to stay miserable, but unbeknownst to us, there was an entire world filled with little miracles just waiting to light us up and show us how beautiful life can be, anytime, anywhere. And when we placed our attention on those little miracles, the problems seemed to abate for a little while, as if the world was responding to our level of interest.
I want you to know that, regardless of what miseries you are currently experiencing (and we all are, trust me, you are not alone), there are a multitude of little miracles just waiting for you, waiting to give you rest from your troubles and show you what a beautiful and amazing place the world truly is. Today, if nothing else, I'm grateful for that river morning, watching the sun rise into that sapphire sky and learning for the first time how powerful gratitude can truly be.
I hope you find your cone. Please, tell me about it! I'd love to hear what little miracles you find! Don't ever stop searching.
(Me on the right, laughing my heart out with fellow goddesses: Jaimes and Sarah)
I love meeting new people, but it's been a while since I've taken the time to really open myself up and let someone new get to know me. It's been a while since I've had to open up the big book of Lindsay and had to attempt to explain to someone new the ins and outs of my personality and life. But here in this new job, I'm getting to know lots of new people who are asking me interesting questions and want to know about who I am. It shines a light for me on the ways I've changed over the years and the person I've grown into.
The past few years have been filled with change for me, on all levels. I've undertaken quite a journey through spirituality over a number of years and have changed my ideals about what spirituality means to me and what kind of a spiritual life I want to have. Psychologically I've dealt with many challenges to my psyche, from learning how to accept my diagnosis of Bipolar Disorder, to learning how to not let it define me and living with authenticity and balance (more on that later). I fell in love with my best friend of fifteen years and watched as our romantic relationship evaporated, and had to learn to navigate our way back into the friendship we so valued while letting go of the romance. I've changed my physical living location half a dozen times, let friendships and relationships run their courses in my life with positivity and love, and tried a handful of new careers.
It seems that since the last time I opened up the big book of Lindsay, I've become a brand new person. And I've realized that the time has come to write a new book.
In this new book, I am actually shining my light freely and openly to the world, rather than hiding myself in a corner out of fear of rejection (or, more accurately, rejection of self). I am giving myself the freedom to explore who I am and the possibilities for the kind of person that I want to be, and I'm learning new things all the time.
The other day I realized something so crucial to my well-being and my own personal idea of happiness: I am absolutely devoted to my personal spiritual/soul evolution. I've begun taking classes and e-courses on subjects like happiness and living with love, I watch videos and listen to interviews with wise men and women and take notes on the things that I believe will enrich my life, I participate in creating supportive environments, both online and in my physical life, I read voraciously on the subject, etc. More than anything, I simply try to let my life be an authentic reflection of the divinity I feel within.
I started to explain this to my goddess sister and dear friend, Jaimes, the other day and she sweetly interrupted me with a bit of laughter and the exclamation, "But dear, you've ALWAYS done that! It's one of my favorite things about you! No matter how dark, you will always find the spark of light." It nearly brought me to tears and simultaneous giggles that, first of all, someone I value so dearly would have that opinion of me, and secondly, that apparently there are aspects to myself that have always been present that I'm only now discovering! How exciting to find that you yourself are a treasure map of beauty and wonder just waiting to reveal its treasures!
How overwhelming and lovely self-discovery/creation can be when you allow your energy to flow naturally with the world. It reminds me of a quote I heard somewhere, "Sometimes we must let go of who we are in order to become who we are meant to be." And what a beautiful process that can be.
Time to write a new book of me. I wonder what kind of story I will tell?