It is in the depths of your life
that you will discover the invisible necessity
that has brought you here.
When you begin to decipher this,
your gift and giftedness come alive.
Your heart quickens and the urgency of living
rekindles your creativity.
I wanted to follow my bliss, I really did.
For many years, I had told myself that I was ready to charge ahead, travel new pathways, set out on a hero’s journey.
Or at least I would have been ready if only I had had some idea of what my bliss was and where to find it.
I guess I was waiting to be told where to go and what I was supposed to do once I arrived there. To have the way laid out in front of me so that I could see where it was going before I took the first step.
In this way, I wouldn’t have to confront my fears and deal with the scary messiness of uncertainty that lay ahead if I were to leave my known world behind and set out in a completely new direction. So my fears continued to control my life and build walls around me, creating barriers that kept me “safe and secure,” even if they were beginning to feel more like a prison. Because the mere thought of making a fundamental change created sheer terror in me, I stayed stuck in one place, dug my heels in, and refused to consider new possibilities. Continuously replaying the same stories over and over in my mind, I told myself:
“You’re stuck where you are and might as well get used to it. In fact, your life is wonderful in many ways and things could be a lot worse. So stop complaining.”
And then one morning I awoke with double vision. The blurriness made it hard for me to see either up close or far away. It made me feel dizzy and kept me from being able to focus on what was in front of me.
But did I pay attention to this message from my wise body-soul? Did I understand it? Make changes in my thoughts and life? Did I ask myself, “What am I refusing to see?”
The blurred vision eventually improved, and my life continued in a fixed, repetitive pattern that seemed to have lost some of its softness and fluidity.
My experience has been that when we are stuck and refuse to listen, our body has to get our attention in whatever way it can. So a few years later it tried again. One night my ankle just gave out and I collapsed on the floor. The next morning I awoke numb from the waist down.
I have since come to understand that my clever body was reflecting the emotions I had been stuffing down inside of me for so many years. Not feeling supported. Not trusting myself. Numbing myself so I couldn’t feel what I really needed. Hiding.
This time my body finally got my attention. I cautiously, slowly, timidly began to make a few changes in my life. They gradually grew bigger and bigger until they began to snowball. Finally, one day I made the biggest decision of all: to leave my companion of 25 years in Italy and move back to the US alone.
In the days and weeks that followed, I began to focus on my body. To really see and hear what it was trying to tell me.
Giftedness Coming Alive
Because I was finally willing to listen, my wonderful, beautiful, magnificent body began to communicate with me. One day, while in an altered state of consciousness during a healing session, I became aware of a symbolic image in my mind’s eye: a fetus curled into a ball, full of fear and hiding from the world.
As the healing sessions continued over the next year, I received many additional images that told stories of sadness, resistance and stuckness, as well as stories of joy, beauty and spirit.
For the first time in my life my essential creativity began to awaken. I was guided to draw each of these images using pastels and acrylics. Eventually, they turned into a series of drawings that told the story of my healing journey.
Because I couldn’t see where the mysterious path ahead of me was leading, I had to learn to let go and trust in the process. To trust in myself. In my body-soul’s guidance and the journey upon which it was leading me.
One day it dawned on me that—amazingly—I had achieved the boon of the hero’s journey. In my hands, I held the physical proof: 64 images in the form of individual giclee prints and an entire set of images in the form of a set of cards.
Now I realize that following my bliss has led to the emergence of many new talents I didn’t even know I had. My gifts and giftedness have come alive in a beautiful, glorious flow of creativity and inspiration.