As I took my walk the day before Thanksgiving, I reflected on my first trip to Maui on Thanksgiving 13 years ago, and my brother’s death 2 days earlier. I wondered how I could feel so much peace when my brother had just transitioned. I knew he was now at peace and not suffering anymore.
What we think is a MISTAKE is often God’s way of redirecting and guiding us. Here is what happened the last time I saw my brother 15 years ago when I visited him in New Jersey. I really enjoyed seeing his family and spending time together. He dropped me off at the airport in Philadelphia and we said our goodbyes.
When I went to the counter to check in, the agent said, “Sorry, your flight is scheduled for tomorrow and we don’t have any flights available for today. You could check Southwest as they have many outgoing flights.”
It is my belief that everything happens for a reason and for my highest good. I remember thanking God as I walked to the next terminal to see if I could get a flight out that day. I didn’t beat up on myself, which would have been so easy to do. You know like, “Why didn’t you check your ticket?”
Thankfully, I was able to get a flight on Southwest the same day. As I meandered through the airport, a young man in a small kiosk waved me over. Since I had several hours to kill and nothing to do, I walked over. He was offering a free round-trip ticket anywhere in the US if I signed up for a Southwest credit card. I signed up and off I went.
A few weeks later, after I finished giving my talk at the church, an elderly woman by the name of Ellen approached me and shared that she lived on Maui. I said, “It’s always been my dream to VISIT Maui. She said, “You can stay with me for as long as you want, and you can use my car.” It was a no-brainer when she pulled out the postcard of her condo overlooking the ocean. I had a free flight and a beautiful place to stay. It was the first time I left my children at Thanksgiving.
The rest is history. Two years later, I rented my condo in Rhode Island and moved to Maui for 6 months and lived with friends in a condo overlooking the ocean. In January it will be 11 years that I have been living on Maui. I followed my heart, stepped out in faith, and moved there knowing I would meet my soulmate. Larry and I were married 5 ½ years ago and live in a beautiful home overlooking the ocean. God is good.
I have shared in past blogs that my brother who was a Viet Nam veteran had been sober from alcohol and drugs for 30 years. About a year ago, he fell and hurt his leg and was prescribed narcotics. He was off and running and became addicted to the pills. He fell again and broke his hip and couldn’t walk. He was in and out of the hospital for months. He wanted to die and wasn’t eating. It was difficult and sad being 5000 miles away and not able to see him. All I could do was PRAY and send him love, which I believe was the best thing I could do for him.
Of course, his transition last week brought up many memories. It was a quiet week of processing my feelings and letting go. My children and close friends were very loving and supportive of me. I reached out to Facebook friends and asked for prayers. I was so touched and grateful for all the prayers and love I received, especially from those I didn’t even know. We truly are ONE and connected.
I’ve experienced my brother’s love and presence in many ways this past week. I love rainbows and have been comforted by them over the years when I really needed a touch from heaven.
My son, who lives in Boise Idaho, sent me a picture of a car’s license plate in front of him that said rainbows on it right after I called to tell him Jim had transitioned. There was a double rainbow covering the whole sky on Thanksgiving morning that was just breathtaking. I sensed it was a sign from above.
I believe our loved ones who have transitioned want to communicate with us and let us know they are safe, free, and happy. A couple of nights after Jim died, Larry and I were in the den watching TV when we heard music playing and thought it was from our neighbor’s house.
When I went into the kitchen our Amazon dot was playing music. Neither Larry nor I had been in the kitchen and turned it on. Was my brother playing tricks and trying to get my attention? I want to believe it was him. I will remain open to signs that he’s home at last. Have you received signs from your loved ones?
There are no mistakes in God’s world. Everything happens for a reason. When we trust and walk in faith, miracles happen all the time.
Happy Thanksgiving! I am grateful for all of you who read my blog every week and respond. My hope is that it inspires you to live your best life and let go of what no longer serves you.
We all want peace and are searching for peace that passes all understanding. Peace comes from within and our willingness to spend time with Spirit every day to listen and do God’s will. For the past several years, my morning prayer and intention has been to be peaceful, to love, to serve, to be happy, to be healthy, and to be a vessel of love.
I’m not sure if it’s because I’m getting older or wiser, but for the past several months, Spirit is inviting me to spend more “quiet” time alone to go within and deepen my relationship with God through prayer, meditation, and journaling. Rather than pushing, rushing, and staying busy as I did for many years, today I CRAVE the quiet time.
For many years, I looked outside of myself for peace and love, giving my power away and losing my peace. I am learning to love and approve of myself rather than looking to others for approval, love, affirmation, and self-worth. How do you lose your peace and give your power away?
As I spend time alone in prayer and meditation, my “stuff” comes to the surface to be healed and transformed. No matter how long we have been on the spiritual journey, we all have unconscious “blind spots” (shadow) that need healing from living in a world that is asleep and unconscious.
Rather than beat up on myself when my “stuff” comes up, I welcome it and thank Spirit for revealing what has been hidden.
For example, my best girlfriend told me many years ago, “Pat, you are very defensive.” I was shocked because I didn’t realize that about myself. I got angry and said, “I’m not defensive.” I thought I had to defend myself from her “perceived” attack.
Thankfully, over the years I have grown and am able to listen to others and hear what they are saying, rather than defend myself. I still may be tempted to defend and explain myself if and when I feel misunderstood or judged.
Mostly, I have learned not to “react” to others and take things personally. I give myself time to process what happened and ask Spirit for guidance as to what to do next if anything.
I was surprised when Spirit brought to my attention that I am defensive with Larry sometimes, especially if I think he is correcting me or telling me what to do. It just doesn’t sit well with me and I say something to defend myself.
We have a joke when something happens around the house and neither one of us wants to take responsibility for it. Rather than blaming the other, we laugh and say “It must have been the other person living here.”
Before we can change a habit, a behavior, or old thought patterns that don’t serve us, we have to be AWARE they are there. I didn’t realize that I was being defensive and reacting when Larry said something I didn’t agree with or like.
I asked myself, “Why do I think I need to defend myself when I have it all? I feel loved, seen, valued, heard, and respected by Larry. “Do I not feel safe and what am I afraid of?”
Defensiveness stems from fear. The truth is that in my defenselessness, my safety lies. Thinking that I need to defend myself to others is “old energy” that originated from the illusion that I am separate from Source and my brothers and sisters.
Through my healing work and sacred tools, I was able to clear the defensive behavior that I uncovered. I’m grateful for the inner “shift” and that I no longer need to defend myself. I can speak up if I need to in a loving and peaceful manner, rather than with defensiveness and sarcasm.
According to Eckhart Tolle in his book, “Stillness Speaks,” he poses the question:
“Is suffering necessary? Yes and no. If you had not suffered as you have, there would be no depth to you as a human being, no humility or compassion. Suffering cracks open the shell of ego and then comes to a point when it has served its purpose. Suffering is necessary until you realize it is unnecessary.”
I suffered a great deal in my earlier life with sexual abuse, parental alcoholism, divorce, unemployment, lack, and beliefs and patterns that robbed me of my peace and true identity. I’m grateful that I have learned my lessons (and still learning) because today my life is about living in love, peace, trust, happiness, joy, and surrender, which is our natural condition.
According to A Course in Miracles, suffering results when we forget who we really are as children of God, Source, or Love. We live not in reality, but in an illusion. We are AWAKENING from the collective dream of separation and walking one another home to the truth that we are all ONE and connected.
There is so much going on in the world these days and millions of people are suffering whether it be concerned about global warming, politics, Covid, inflation, health issues, war, food prices, relationships, finances, drought, housing shortages, retirement, food shortages, and the list goes on and on. Can you relate?
I have had my share of fear of living in the middle of the ocean that we won’t be able to get food delivered, run out of water, run out of money, or not have a place to live. I know fear is useless and what is needed is TRUST. God has ALWAYS provided for and guided me.
Is there something in your life that you are afraid and worried about? Is there anything you can do about it? Can you control it? I cannot change what is going on outside of me in the world. I pray and send love to my family and friends and to the world every day. I “show up” to the best of my ability and ask where I can be a vessel of love and kindness. I know that all I can change is ME, my perspectives, thoughts, and reactions. It’s my thoughts that cause suffering and fear. Fear is a call for love.
Fear cannot exist in the present moment, but only in the past and the future, which does not exist. The present moment is the only TIME there is. It is in the present moment that I experience peace. The past is gone, the future is just IMAGINED with all the “what ifs.” Our safety lies in truth and not in lies and illusions. When love is our safety, fear does not exist. Choose Love and you are safe and home.
I’ve asked myself, “What is my responsibility as a light worker, healer, and child of the Universe?” It is to keep my vibration high in love, peace, and gratitude so I can serve where I am called to serve and BE the light and anchor for others still in darkness and caught up in egoic thinking by comparing, competing, and judging.
Here are some obstacles that keep us from awakening: Anger, resentment, unforgiveness, fear, guilt, judgment, blame, shame, defensiveness, unworthiness, and inadequacy.
For the last several years living on Maui, Larry and I have belonged to a “love group” which meets every other week. Last week we discussed the idea of suffering being a CHOICE. Hmmm, very interesting and deep. I believe suffering comes when we are unable to “accept what it is” and when we forget the truth of who we are as children of God. I have many choices on a daily basis to keep myself centered and aligned in peace and love.
· I can choose love or fear
· I can choose lack or abundance
· I can choose to accept “what is” or resist and suffer
· I can choose to let go of what no longer serves me
· I can choose to feel all of my feelings, rather than a spiritual bypass
· I can choose to not take things personally
· I can choose to forgive myself and others for perceived wrongdoing
· I can choose to let go of old patterns and beliefs
· I can choose to not be defensive and react
· I can choose to TRUST God rather than live in fear
· I can choose to LIVE IN THE MOMENT
What are you choosing today? What do you need to let go of to live the best version of yourself?
It started out like a regular Monday as I got ready to leave for my water aerobics class. Of course, I had no idea what the rest of the day would look like and that we would have an opportunity to practice choosing love and peace instead of fear.
When Larry returned home from his walk with Kobi, he said, “My arm and fingers are tingling and numb.” I thought, “That doesn’t sound good.” He immediately took his blood pressure, which was normal.
He assured me that he was fine and off I went to my class. After my class, I visited my friend, Margie. As soon as I arrived at her house, I called Larry to see how he was feeling. He said, “I have had the same episode 2 more times since you left.”
I encouraged him to call his doctor to let him know what was going on. He called me back a few minutes later informing me that the doctor wanted to see him immediately. We felt grateful that we didn’t have to wait to get an appointment.
Margie lives 10 minutes away from our home. When I arrived home, Larry was already waiting at the bottom of our driveway, and off we went to the doctor. We were both silent in the car not knowing if he was having a stroke or not.
When the doctor initially checked his vitals, he said, “I can’t tell you what to do.” By the time he finished examining Larry, he said, “I think you need to go to the ER NOW and get an MRI. Don’t take the time to check out here. We could call an ambulance but it would be faster to drive your car to the hospital. When you get to the ER tell them you are having a stroke.”
Yikes. This was serious. Of course, we were both scared and didn’t say a word to one another on the drive to the hospital. I kept taking deep breaths and focused on getting us there safely. When we arrived at the ER, I dropped him off and parked the car. He did what his doctor told him to say, “I’m having a stroke.”
A nurse brought him into her office to take his vitals and ask him some questions. Apparently, she didn’t think he was having a stroke as she sent us back into the waiting room to wait for the ER doctor to see him. She said, “If it gets worse, raise your hand and YELL.”
There were quite a few sick people already in the waiting room. Being in the ER was Larry’s worse nightmare as he is at high risk for COVID with lung problems. We have both been diligent and stayed out of crowds, escaping COVID. Here we were in the middle of it all. If we were ever going to get COVID it would be here.
We sat there for 3 hours before a doctor even checked him. He scheduled him for an MRI to see if he had a stroke or had any blockages in his brain or neck. We waited another 2 hours before they took him for the MRI. When the MRI was finished, he said to the nurse, “That was quite a challenging experience and I kept choosing love instead of fear through the whole procedure.”As he was being wheeled back to the cubicle where I was waiting for him, he said to the nurse, “Remember to keep choosing love, instead of fear.” She smiled and said, “I will do that.”
For the entire time in the waiting room, I kept repeating the mantra, “I choose love. I choose love, I choose peace.” I repeated my daily affirmation. “I am peaceful, safe, and protected from everything and everyone that doesn’t serve my highest good.” I kept visualizing a golden bubble around us.
Whenever Larry started to feel concerned or fearful, especially with people coughing, gagging, and vomiting all around us, he kept choosing love instead of fear. We were both able to send love to all the people who were sick around us.
We waited another 2 hours before we found out the results of the MRI. We were relieved and grateful when the doctor said, “No stroke or blockages.” Rather than it being a stroke or blockage in his brain, it was a neck issue that caused the numbness in his arm from the pillow he had been sleeping on for months. He changed the pillows and the numbness is gone completely.
Everything happens for a reason and we are protected and guided always. Perhaps Spirit gave us the opportunity to pray for others who were suffering and to practice choosing love and peace instead of fear in a very difficult situation. The best news is we didn’t get COVID.
I’m sure we’ve all experienced what it’s like to have a mosquito buzzing around your head in the middle of the night when you are trying to sleep. You are just about to doze off for the 4th time and there it is again buzzing around your head. It just won’t go away and let you sleep.
That’s what it felt like this week, but instead of a mosquito buzzing around my head and annoying me, it was my egoic voice trying to rob me of my peace. It was relentless, vicious, and wouldn’t stop!
I couldn’t stand it anymore it was so annoying. At one point, as I was driving in my car with the windows up, I screamed, “STOP.” I had enough of its shenanigans and lies.
Have you ever wondered how to recognize your egoic voice from the voice of the Spirit? First of all, you lose your PEACE as your mind feels like a blender going around and around with negativity, fear, shame, blame, and judgment.
I read something this week that resonated with me. It was, “There is no greater wealth in this world than peace of mind.” I pray every day for peace and have been for many years. I experience peace 90% of the time deep within my soul because I know I’m not alone, and am guided, and protected in everything I do.
My egoic voice whispers “You are not good enough. You are not doing enough. You don’t belong. You don’t have enough. You are not loved. You are separate from one another and “better than or less than others.” It comes from a deep place of fear which compares, judges, shames, and competes.
For many years, I compared myself to others, especially other women, and felt jealous A LOT. No matter what I did or how many degrees I obtained, it never felt like it was enough. I hated it whenever jealousy would rear its head. After much needless suffering, I learned to say, “OK jealousy, come on in and have a cup of tea.” This can be done with any feeling I’m feeling. Somehow, this acceptance of “what is” helps to comfort me and sets me free.
I rarely feel jealous anymore until this week when all hell broke loose in my mind. It made NO SENSE that I was struggling and feeling jealous after a conversation I had with a friend. I love my life and live in gratitude to God for what we have co-created. Like a broken record, I kept playing the conversation we had over and over in my mind and then judged myself for rambling on. Then came the SHAME for feeling jealous. It felt like I was in a vicious cycle and I knew I needed help. I prayed, “I need help Spirit.”
Message from Spirit:
Relax in my presence and come into the present moment and my truth. Your ego is vicious and wants to rob you of the life we have co-created here. RISE ABOVE THE DRAMA. Keep choosing love and peace. I want you to “accept what is.” Relationships are constantly changing and evolving and that is a good thing. Let there be no judgment or taking things personally. Forgive yourself for comparing, and judging. shaming and feeling jealous. I am inviting you to love yourself unconditionally and your sisters and brothers as you are all ONE.
Here is my process and how I moved through this egoic attack to bring myself back into peace:
· I become AWARE when my egoic voice is clamoring for attention
· I go within and ask Spirit for help
· I said “STOP” to the egoic voice
· I forgive myself and others when necessary
· I choose love. peace and happiness
As I sat to meditate on my swing overlooking the ocean the next morning, I felt a deep peace that passes all understanding. By intentionally choosing love and peace, I free myself to live my life to the fullest and be me. I believe it is Spirit’s intention for us to live in love, peace, joy, and happiness.
It is when I’m living in the PRESENT MOMENT and in the Christ Presence that I feel deep peace. Being at peace is attained through dissolving thoughts of all kinds and surrendering to the moment. The past is gone and the future with all its “what ifs” cannot disturb me if, I don’t allow it.
Larry continues to show me how to be PRESENT and available. When I return home from my morning walk/swim or meeting with a friend for tea, he is often on the computer or in the den watching something on YouTube.
As soon as I enter the room and greet him, he is PRESENT and lowers the volume of the tv or stops what he’s doing on the computer. I’m grateful because I always feel loved, seen, and heard. He wants to know how my morning went and we share about our day so far.
I almost missed out on a “gift from the heart” from him that I will treasure forever. How often have I missed the gifts and love because I’m too busy doing something else that I think is more important? Can you relate?
Here is what happened:
Since I’ve had problems with my lower back after several accidents over the years, my children bought me a Bio-Mat for my birthday. It is an infrared heat therapy that is filled with amethyst crystals. The mat promotes healing and blood flow while energizing and rejuvenating the body. I love sitting on the Bio-Mat in my ‘stressless chair” as I relax and read in front of the ocean.
When I came home from my acupuncture session that morning, I looked forward to just BEING and relaxing on the Bio-Mat. I was listening to a podcast from Maryanne Williamson about relationships when Larry approached me and said, “I have something I want you to listen to.”
I was cozy and relaxed and really didn’t want to get up at that moment. I thought to myself, “Can’t it wait until I’m done here?” As I looked into his eyes, I sensed it was important and got up and went to the den to listen to it. Before he played the song on YouTube, he said, “This is dedicated to you and my gift to you.”
As I sat next to him on the couch, I reached for his hand as the words of the song touched my heart deeply. I wanted to remember this poignant moment forever. The song was “I Will Always Love You” by Whitney Houston (originally sung by Dolly Parton). The YouTube version was sung by Lucy Thomas and it was amazing.
I was so touched by the words that I asked him to play it again so I could record it on my phone. As I sat on the floor close to the tv recording it, I turned back to look at Larry and we both had tears in our eyes. Wow, what a gift to think I will be able to play the song and remember this moment whenever I wanted to feel his love.
This brought back another memory of when Larry and I were best friends before we were married. Larry was having some serious health problems. We were at a restaurant with a friend when Larry became very pale and looked like he was about to pass out. He looked me in the eyes and said, “Don’t ever forget how much I love you.”
Our relationship is truly about love and sharing our faith journey together. We support one another as we grow in consciousness. Larry says, “We are joined at the heart, and not at the hip.”
As Larry is PRESENT and available to me, I strive to be PRESENT and available to him and to all those I encounter on my path. It occurred to me that before I can be PRESENT with anyone else, I have to be PRESENT with myself and God. I spend time alone every day going within, meditating, listening, and being grateful.
Being PRESENT with myself means:
· I know what I want and what I don’t want
· I have healthy boundaries and speak up and say no when I want to
· I’m in touch with my feelings and am able to share them
· I trust Spirit that I am loved, guided, and protected
· I love, trust, appreciate and accept myself
I’m grateful for this powerful lesson to be PRESENT and available. I don’t want to ever miss the gifts and love because I’m too busy doing something else that I think is more important.
Although it feels like it happened yesterday, I’m feeling led to share the miracle that happened 40 years ago. When you hear the small, still voice of God so clearly for the FIRST time, it is etched in your heart forever.
Today, I am aligned with Spirit and hear the small, still voice of God on a daily basis guiding me on my journey. I love to share my “God-blouse” story to inspire others to trust God in everything and to listen to the small, still voice of God within.
My husband had been unemployed for a year, and we had four children under the age of ten. I remember how humiliated I felt when we had to apply for welfare and food stamps.
On the day that I bought my “God-blouse,” I had some time to kill as I waited to pick up the children from school. Even though I didn’t have money to buy anything, I could still window show I told myself. I spotted the clearance sign at the back of the store and quickly walked over to the clothing rack. I had no intention of buying anything, but the blouse jumped out at me. I fell in love with it and it was only ten dollars, I thought to myself. I wanted to forget that my husband was out of work and I couldn’t afford it.
As I reluctantly placed it back on the rack, I heard the small, still voice of God say, “BUY IT AND I WILL PROVIDE.” I pulled out my wallet to see how much money I had. I had a ten-dollar bill tucked away in the billfold.
“God, did I hear you right, or was that just me wanting the blouse?” Was my imagination running wild? I thought, “If I spend the money on a blouse, where will I get the money to buy milk and bread on the way home?”
I wanted to believe it was God, but could I trust myself? Miracles happened when I listened to God in the past. My gut was saying, “Trust God and buy the blouse.” I decided to buy the blouse.
I picked up the children from school and drove directly home (not saying anything about my purchase.) I grabbed the mail from the mailbox as I walked into the house, hoping there weren’t any bills.
There was a letter with no return address on it. I quickly opened it, eager to see what was inside of it. My heart skipped a beat when I saw the crisp new ten-dollar bill tucked inside the notecard. As I read the simple but profound message written in the card, I started to tremble from head to foot.
Oh my God, I shouted as the tears streamed down my cheeks. I frantically searched for a name, but there wasn’t any. Sprawled across the handwritten note was simply,
From the Son of a Carpenter
Filled with awe and gratitude, I couldn’t stop laughing and crying at the same time. God provides, but I didn’t expect it so dramatically and so quickly. I still don’t know who sent the card and money-and probably never will. The person who sent it listened to the small, still voice of God and took action.
A lot has happened over the past 40 years. I wrote my book, “Simply a Woman of Faith” 14 years ago, I’ve been divorced for almost 25 years, retired as an Alcohol and Drug therapist, moved to Maui by myself and remarried 5 ½ years ago. Larry and I wrote our book together, “It’s Never Too Late for Love.”
Perhaps not as dramatic as my “God- blouse” story and receiving the ten-dollar bill in the mail, I continue to hear the small, still voice of God on a daily basis. I am never alone and neither are you.
I encourage you to go within for your answers knowing and trusting you will be guided every step of the way. It does take courage and practice to trust yourself that God is speaking to you. I would not be living the life of my dreams if I hadn’t been listening and said YES to the divine plan.
Have you ever heard this? We make plans and God laughs!!! Today is my birthday and I had a peaceful morning meditating, sitting outside on my swing, enjoying the sunshine, breeze, and ocean. I received many texts and calls from family and friends that delighted my heart. Larry sang happy birthday to me and we enjoyed banana bread with candles on our lanai.
We were looking forward to going to our favorite restaurant upcountry and enjoying chicken parmesan and the most delicious chocolate cake ever.
Right before we were ready to leave it started pouring rain. I put my raincoat on with my beautiful lei that a neighbor gave me for my birthday and off we went. We were only a couple of blocks away from our home when the windshield wiper on the driver’s side flew off into the road. We looked at one another and Larry said, “We cannot get on the highway with no windshield.” I knew he was right and we turned around to go back home.
I was disappointed, but immediately accepted “what is.” I believe things happen for a reason and for our highest good. If we had gotten on the highway only a few blocks away, it would have been impossible to see the road with the pouring rain. A closed door is often for our protection. It would have been easy to complain, feel angry, and sorry for myself. I chose not to do that, but to go with the flow.
I came home and began to write this blog. Up until this moment, I wasn’t sure what Spirit wanted me to share. I wrote in my journal this morning. “Thank you for the gift of peace. Nothing can compare to this peace in my soul. Nothing anyone does or doesn’t do can rob me of this peace-unless I ALLOW it.”
I have come to a place within my soul where I KNOW it is my relationship with God, Love, Source, Spirit that is what’s important and what is real and true. My inner life is what is important as I go within for all of my answers, rather than looking outside for someone to tell me what to do or not to do.
During my prayer time this morning, I thought about how many years I gave my power away and suffered terribly because I looked outside of myself to get what I thought I needed to make me feel loved. If I had only known what I know today!
For many years before becoming conscious, my addiction was rushing and staying busy. I didn’t want to feel my feelings and go inside. I liked having long lists and crossing it off when it was completed. There was a sense of accomplishment and achievement. If I wasn’t busy and doing, I often felt guilty that I wasn’t doing enough and making a difference in the world.
Here is the message I received from Spirit:
“Release the past, it’s over. Come into the present moment where there is LOVE and LIGHT. Let there be no judgement, shame, or blame as you did the best you could and there is no right or wrong. Celebrate who and where you are today and how you have grown and transformed. You have been on the path for many years and have let go of old beliefs of not being good enough and separate from Source.”
Today, I LOVE and cherish being quiet and doing NO THING. Rather than being driven and motivated by egoic thinking of accomplishing, achieving, planning, competing, comparing, I am living a soul directed life where there is acceptance, presence, allowing, purpose, peace, pleasure, play, surrender, flow, joy and love.
I choose not to direct my life, but instead allow life to lead me. I choose love instead of fear. How about you? What are you choosing today?
I look forward to celebrating my 76th birthday with Larry and a few friends next week. I’m celebrating the woman I have become and all the ups and downs of my journey so far. I never gave up on myself and was determined to “Find myself and BE myself.”
Transformation and doing the “inner work” haven’t always been easy, but absolutely worth the effort. I wouldn’t be who and where I am today if I wasn’t willing to let go of old beliefs of not being good enough, worthy to receive love, and separate from the Source.
For many years while I was married, I didn’t look forward to celebrating my birthday. I dreaded it because I didn’t want to feel disappointed, angry, and forgotten.
After crying and falling apart because my ex-husband forgot my birthday, I was promised it wouldn’t happen the next year. It happened, AGAIN and AGAIN, year after year. I felt powerless and like a victim. No matter how upset and hurt I was, it didn’t change his behavior. I don’t believe he intentionally wanted to hurt me. I didn’t understand it back then but today I know it was passive-aggressive behavior.
Passive-aggressive behavior is a pattern of indirectly expressing negative feelings instead of openly addressing them. There’s a disconnect between what a person says and what he or she does. It may mean a person has difficulty dealing with negative emotions because they were never shown how to do this growing up. Passive aggression involves a series of verbal, non-verbal, and evasive techniques that indicate discontent without ever saying it. It may be an indirect way to manipulate, abuse, or punish another person.
Here are some signs of passive-aggressive behavior: sarcasm, procrastination, subtle put-downs, laughed at, avoidance, silent treatment, forgetting, lateness, cynicism, and not taking responsibility for tasks they agreed to perform.
Do you have someone in your life who exhibits these behaviors? Perhaps it may even be you. My ex-husband and I both came from alcoholic homes where we learned the unspoken rules:
· Don’t talk,
· Don’t trust,
· Don’t feel.
This isn’t about blame, shame, or judgment. We loved one another and did the best we could from the dysfunctional homes we grew up in. I didn’t know how to speak up and ask for what I wanted, I wasn’t in touch with my feelings, especially anger, and I expected him to read my mind and sulked when I didn’t get my way.
We are often wounded by others and weave stories about our hurts that live on in our hearts and minds. We hold onto resentments and anger about our past. We blame our parents. We distrust the power of love and connection.
Forgiveness is the key to freedom. Forgiveness is not for the other person, it’s for me. Forgiveness has allowed me to open my heart to give and receive love.
I have learned to forgive the past, my ex-husband, and most of all MYSELF for giving my power away by not recognizing abuse and not knowing how to give myself the love that I craved from others. I didn’t have the tools that I have today to set myself free and live in peace.
Today, I am 100% accountable for my thoughts, behaviors, feelings, beliefs, motives, and actions. I am responsible for my happiness as it is an inside job. I can be as happy as I want to be.
I’m grateful to Spirit for the courage and willingness to set myself free. I am a woman giving birth to myself and the gifts God has given me. I don’t regret my past or anything that has happened to me. I have learned many lessons through my experiences that have made me the woman I am today. I don’t know how many more years I will have to celebrate ME so I will make this birthday the best that I can.
I wasn’t expecting the CRASH when I returned home. I’m grateful that I remembered CONTRACTION often follows EXPANSION. It’s important to understand and honor our EXPANSION and CONTRACTION cycles as part of life and not to be afraid when CONTRACTION happens.
Anytime you push past the limit of what you are today; anytime you grow and expand; anytime you move further than is normal for you, you will experience CONTRACTION. The exchange of energy in cycles of expansion and contraction is happening constantly. It is part of how human beings work. It follows breathing cycles: Every time you inhale, you expand; every time you exhale, you contract.
As I shared in last week’s blog, when I returned home from my vacation with family, I felt EXPANDED, EMPOWERED, INTEGRATED, and LOVED. I was able to work through issues quickly by asking Spirit for help, not taking things personally, and giving myself the affirmations that I craved from others, as I did for so many years.
It seemed like out of nowhere, I CRASHED and spiraled into irrational FEARS after being home for only a couple of days. I didn’t understand it at first because it felt like something was wrong with me and a personal weakness. My heart felt heavy and afraid as I thought about some family and friends who were suffering and in pain.
As I prayed and journaled about my irrational fears, I asked Spirit for a message:
“RISE UP FROM THE ASHES. You are under attack from your ego. Your ego is dying and it’s not happy. Ego is threatened and doesn’t want you to celebrate and integrate so it’s attacking your mind with fear. Remember, all there is is love and all is well. Keep calling on me and TRUST the process. Keep choosing love. All that is real is LOVE. Fear is not real, but a ploy of the ego.”
The ego is the part of us that tries to control everything so that we feel safe. The ego makes us feel separate from each other and God. When we see others as different from ourselves, it creates an illusion of separation, creating a sense of lack and scarcity. It leads to competition rather than cooperation; it leads to judgment rather than acceptance; it leads to fear rather than love; it leads to hate rather than forgiveness.
Once I understood what was happening and how my ego was robbing me of my peace and well-being, I felt grounded and peaceful. back to myself and open for miracles.
The week before I left for vacation, I twisted and hurt my back when our dog, Kobi, was attacked by another dog. It was recommended that Pilates would help strengthen my core stomach muscles.
I felt a little overwhelmed as I explored Pilates studios in the area. I didn’t know whether to do group or private lessons, mat or the transformer machine. Money was definitely a factor as I would be doing it for a long time. I asked for guidance to be led to the right and perfect place.
I belonged to a gym before COVID hit. It’s been 2 ½ years since I stopped my membership. I decided to call and see if they offered Pilates classes and inquire about the cost of renewing my membership. They didn’t have a Pilates class scheduled at the moment but would be starting one soon. Membership costs $499.
I was thrilled as one of my children surprised me with a check for $500 right before I returned home. Of course, neither of us knew the cost of renewing my membership.
God’s timing was perfect, as always. We are always provided for when we trust and ask for guidance.
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Simply A Woman of Faith
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