It’s morning and I’m standing in a casual tree pose, checking my emails and drinking my daily glass of clay water before getting down to work.
The children have gone to school and the remains of their breakfast are still on the table. My mind is humming with the latest thought while the kitten chases the budgies around the house behind me. In the background, I can feel my star friends trying to pull my attention—there’s something they want to share with me.
This is what it’s like now that I have fully embraced the need to live my own life in the way that feels right to me.
Several years ago, the morning would have looked completely different. It would have been a 6.30 a.m. start, rushing through making school lunches before dashing to the station to catch a train to the office. All the time trying to either ignore or scribble my own deeper thoughts and insights onto scraps of paper stuffed into various pockets and bags.
There was a time when I first started down the road of self-discovery, when I wondered if I was just simply mad. Not mad as in ‘lock her up’ mad. Just slightly delusional. Alternative living had never been new to me, but the spiritual aspects of it was. I began to meet people who used phrases like ‘it’s meant to be’ and ‘it’s a sign.’ It all seemed very vague and abstract, and wasn’t helped by the fact that many of those I met weren’t exactly the best at looking after their own practical needs—they weren’t eating well, living well or even happy.
Roll forward quite a few years and here I am, talking to some higher consciousness that appears to be connected to the stars (more on that in another blog!), having conversations about grace and divine timing, and the tumble dryer has been broken for months. So what changed to bring me to where I am?
In a nutshell, the first thing that really changed was a deep shift in my understanding. It had something to do with the question: why am I here? I’ve been told at various times that I’m a teacher, a healer, a guide and many other things (some not quite so attractive). All of those, though, felt like they carried a burden of responsibility for another. Not that I have an issue with caring for others—I love it. But I’ve always felt that true growth and happiness has to be prompted from within, so a healer/teacher/guide can only really be a prompt or act as a tool when someone is ready. And if someone is really ready, and wanting to grow and change, then they will find a way no matter whether there is an external teacher around them or not.
Somehow that didn’t seem to quite fit as a real answer to ‘why am I here?’ It was more a role or a job description than anything else. It didn’t go deep enough or touch the heart of the question. As I worked with clients, I began to see how many of them mirrored the same desire for understanding, although it was usually hidden under the ‘what should I do’ question.
I was also trying to reconcile the idea that there might actually be an answer to the ‘why am I here’ question with the concept of free will and freedom of choice. If there was a deeper reason to why I was on earth, and yet I have free will, how could they sit together comfortably?
I eventually found the understanding I was looking for by coming back to a topic that I had shunned for many years—God.
I didn’t deliberately start exploring the subject. It just kind of found me. Having turned my back on organized religion as I became an adult, the concept of God as a separate force or being who had plans for me had never sat right and so I had shelved the whole subject.
Now I was being challenged by non-religious descriptions to come back and find my own understanding. And so I did. The understanding I came to is that God is the force that flows through everything, that is everything, and is constantly expanding. We, as expressions or parts of that energy, are also constantly expanding, and even creating that expansion.
This brought me back to my question—why am I here?
I am here because I’m an expression of God?
It seemed a little lame at the time—and certainly not a new concept. What was new, though, was that I had come to my own personal understanding of it. And it is this desire for a personal understanding—an understanding that is true for me and which I can apply in a practical way in my life—that is a guiding force for me now. If I’m here as an expression of divine energy, then wouldn’t it make sense that I would be happiest by allowing that energy to flow freely through me in the way that is most natural? But to do that requires a level of self-awareness and a willingness to challenge assumptions in order to discover what is authentic for me and what is not.
So back to where I started—aliens, clay, a broken tumble-dryer and madness.
Do I think I’m mad?
Yes and no.
But it doesn’t really matter, and that’s more the point. Each society has its own definitions of normal and abnormal, based around fitting in with accepted behaviors. What matters to me is that I am living a life where I can be myself, where I do what I love in a way that I love, and yet there’s still plenty of room for improvement. My life may involve unusual perspectives, speaking to star friends, and a diet that mightn’t be mainstream, but it is an expression of who I am. And by being who I am, rather than trying to be someone another might like me to be. I feel that sense of fulfillment—I am fulfilling my ‘purpose,’ if I have one, which is simply to be as fully myself as I can be. And, do you know what? I feel strangely proud for simply having a go.
The tumble-dryer, on the other hand, got left for months just because it wasn’t important enough. Where once the daily ‘realities’ got the bulk of my energy and attention (bills, shopping, office, home decor, holidays, appearance), my energy is now mainly focused on what I love to do and it takes a little more effort to get back to the things that just have to be done—all those practical things that need attention and help to make life more pleasant.
I’ve cleared the air filter properly and now I have a functioning dryer again.
Maybe this afternoon I might actually remember to pick up some toilet paper before we run out.
(Originally published in Elephant Journal)