Updated: Aug 18, 2019
It's not all ascension. Two years in, some days are fabulous. Morning journaling and meditating. Taking pictures of my flowers and posting them on Instagram. Having intriguing conversations about dinosaurs and Paw Patrol with my grandson. Life can just flow so well some days.
Then in a moment, an hour, everything grinds into bumpy transmission-destroying reverse.
A series of disappointments dealing with book publishing processes this summer lead me to put writing on hold to focus on working on opening our holistic healing center. Meditation and energy healing helped me ascend out of bed and step out of my slow grief fog. I knew I was supposed to help others do the same. But sometimes I'm guilty of avoiding my own 'medicine' in efforts to "get things done."
Last Monday was my first Crystal Bowl Meditation event at the new center. We received the keys the previous Wednesday I knew I would not be able to do the center justice in two days. I was away Thursday through Sunday for my niece's Bachelorette wild weekend in Nashville. Intuition and many signs told me to postpone it again. But, since 16 people had already signed up on meetup I chose to work 10 hours on Monday, skipping my own morning prayer/meditation to bring my first event to the St. Clair Shores community.
I scrambled to set up pillows, chairs, mats and my bowls and searched to find the best guided meditation. I mopped the floor twice to remove settling construction dust. I washed windows, hung pictures and rearranged furniture. I worked past my mandatory nap time and I forgot to eat. It started pouring rain towards the end of the window washing. But nauseous, tired and thirsty and now drenched I drove down to the smoothie place hoping they had a green energy option. They not only had that but vegan food options, too.
I ate and drank inside watching a teenager look strangely at my car. After savoring my caprese sandwich I left the restaurant to witness another young man looking oddly at my car. I should have honored the beep I heard coming from the vehicle when I shut the door in the parking lot. My car had been running the entire time blasting the iTunes 23-minute version of the Rosary. "Hail Mary Full of Grace, the Lord is With Me." Oh good. I need Mary, the Lord, Norm and all the help I can get today. Thank God no one was around who would be tempted to borrow an orange Equinox, otherwise I could have been carless and locked out of the center a mile down the road. My keys sat nestled in my cupholder.
My partner, Danielle, came and helped with additional details, quickly creating a makeshift front desk and adding more chairs to accommodate for the three recently added signups. I would need her to help give energy healing sessions to many of the 19 guests who would request extra healing after the meditation. She came despite grieving her son who passed four years ago. It would have been his 22nd birthday that Monday.
At 20 minutes out we noticed we were warm. Danielle had lowered the thermostat to 72 a while ago. It was a humid 79 with the sun shining through the wet windows. No air blowing. As we struggled to figure out the Nest system, we facetimed the owner to troubleshoot to no avail. She ran home to get fans for my sweaty face and our guests.
As we were still struggling with the air situation ten minutes prior to event time, two guests showed, Mary and Pat--both good friends of mine. When I saw the wonderful response to the event, I put off notifying my friends, except for Mary. She had recently called to ask when my first meditation was. I was so grateful they came early and they reassured us that it wasn't too warm. They got their pick of the fluffy faux fur mats I bought and I got to awkwardly explain the sound vibration process as I wondered where the other 18 people were. It had stopped raining.
No one else showed. There were a few last minute cancellations on the app probably due to the downpour. We had no sign on the street yet as the majority of the building was still under construction. But my address was correct on the meetup app. I printed two large signs to place on each of the door entrances. By 6:45 I had quit running out to the street looking for some of my confused attendees and began the meditation. All through it, instead of sending out healing prayers and reiki, I obsessed about my absent guests. I wondered if I was sabotaged by a social media troll. I worried that this was a sign that this whole dream was just that. I forced back tears as I tried to make my bowls sing smoothly. The sound of my red root chakra bowl irritated me. Did I manifest this in Nashville when I said multiple times that I wouldn't be ready?
The Violet Flame Healing Center's first Crystal Bowl Sound Healing Meditation
I tried to be positive. Mary and Pat claimed they loved it and were able to slow their mind chatter. I'd be home in time to watch the finale of The Bachelorette with my girls. I'll do it right next time. Invite more family and friends, nap and meditate first and listen to the Rosary with me In the car. But by the time Hannah B dumped poor Pilot Peter in front of millions of people I was fading into "What the hell have I done?! I retired from teaching to spend $1000s on opening a holistic healing business and training in these weird healing modalities to help others when I am still damaged and depressed myself!"
It got worse. On Tuesday I sunk to the self-pity hole again. I didn't sleep. I tried to meditate but I prayed/begged for miracles and signs instead. The fog was back. One of my best friends, Kelly, texted and sensed my mood. She asked if she could come over. I cried just looking at my stained 30 year-old gross carpeting, dying flowers and disaster of unpacked suitcases, Amazon boxes and extra dorm furniture cluttering my dusty dirty house. Then in the middle of cry/texting I heard Norm's voice in my head for the first time in a long time demand, "Get a new floor!"
me: "I can't afford it!"
Norm: "Yes, you can."
"I'll take you to lunch. Then I want to see the center."
I barely agreed. I had promised Danielle I would meet her up there to go over the meetup app even though I wanted to delete it from my life. I was a mess. Wet hair bun and last nights cried off make up face. I was nauseous and couldn't even drink my coffee. How would I go to a restaurant?
Kelly picked me up and as we drove toward the center she pulled into her favorite type of place, Roses Diner. OK, Roses. Mother Mary again. Very sweet homestyle down to earth casual.
I didn't cry once and even ate a whole grilled tuna sandwich. After lunch we met Danielle at the center. Kelly complimented us and helped me clean up my bowls and stack some chairs. Then we came back to my home mess.
I pointed out my embarrassing carpeting. I knew I needed it replaced but thought it would run in the $5000 range. I have 3 or 4 kids in college. I have two kids, two nieces and nephew getting married within the year. I quit my steady teaching job to open a woo woo healing joint. I just had the air conditioner repaired, I need a new roof, the cottage deck maybe floating down the river soon, blah blah blah. But I know in my heart that if I just got that damn dirty carpeting replaced with flooring that is dog and kid proof I'd be motivated to clean and purge the rest of the house.
Kelly immediately called and got a labor estimate for $800! Ok, laminate fake wood flooring replacing my Sharpe, merlot, dog secretion, turmeric stained carpeting. is in my near future! Things were looking up.
The remaining 15% of The 'Official' State Cake of Michigan
She left and I knew I needed to sleep. I tried dozing to youtube motivational loops. I woke to someone suggesting that when in despair, try doing something for others. What could I do that didn't involve money or talking to people? Then my neighbor, Suzanne, brought over a Bumpy Cake.
Suzanne has had several losses this year and her husband, Vince, faces serious health issues. She brings me her luscious leftovers at least once a week. She took me to Mexico last winter. She listens to me vent over glasses of wine in our kitchens and on front porches. She's the best neighbor I could ever imagine. What could I do to be more like her?
All my kids would be over later. So I tried to plan a meal. The kids knew I was a mess this week. I told them that I wondered if I made the biggest mistake of my life. I probably scared the shit out of them. I could maybe redeem myself if I acted a bit like their old mom: pre-shamanic soul retrieving, high hill and river retreating, shawl wearing, messy long-haired mom.
I had three freezers. There must be some unexpired edibles in them. At least half the contents were freezer burned and/or possibly 2+ years old. There were bags of meatballs and pasta from Sam's 2017 graduation party. Pork loins and hamburger that was purchased before I became a pescatarian in 2018. I settled on a box of pirogies, sautéed zucchini, frozen spinach pizza and veggie fries for dinner with Suzanne's bumpy cake for dessert. Three years ago this concoction would have been met with eye rolling and dry heaves except for the pirogies and cake. Yesterday, I had shocked smiling faces grateful that mom finally "cooked". Grace didn't even make a big issue out of the colorful sour cream I served on the side. The 'use by' date of June was technically only a month ago.
The girls and I watched the Bachelorette finale, surprised at her choice in fiancé. He looked great but couldn't she see the budding singer/songwriter was just in it for furthering his career of composing dog food jingles?
Bedtime again became obsessing time. Do I look for a full-time job to help pay for 29 more months rent on a center that will at most net me negative $100 a month? Why didn't I use the money I spent on retreats and healing classes to fix up my house? I found myself job searching at 2am. Can I do Human Resources? What is human resources? Should I bartend full time? (I already picked up a very part-time gig bartending at Lion's home football games.)
I slept for maybe an hour and was drawn to facebook at 4 am. It was cheaper than Amazon. I saw several posts by Neelam, a shaman woman I went to Sedona with a year ago. She posted about her struggles that lead her to the healing profession. She also posted this:
It was the miracle I needed. I broke down in front of at least six people in the past two days. Then I stressed about that. Why can't I hold it together? I'm supposed to be a healer/grief coach? I need one of those for ME now. I'm still doubting myself at least once or twice a week and looking for a "steady regular" job? I want my old Norm back. And I'm supposed to help people?!
Neelam's posts reminded me that we are never fully healed. We all have our triggers and require retreats and self-care to deal with our shadow selves. And most of all, I don't need to hide my grief as a healer or human being! There's a facebook meme post that floats around out there about "Thank you to the people who face challenges but don't post about them." Basically, "don't post about your pain--we don't want to see it." Give us more "Fakebook" as my friend likes to call it. Only smiling pretty faces and good news, please. Don't give us your dirty carpet crap and career troubles.
We should all pretend we are happy and healed or keep it to yourselves. How does that help others? our kids? Telling them life is supposed to be all sitcom happy happy the majority of the time? There's no place for sadness in this world. That's what wine, antidepressants and Amazon addictions are for. Take a pill, have a drink, shop, smile dammit!
And I am so guilty of this. I didn't post any of this last week. No, I posted news of my daughter, Grace, passing her PT boards. I left out the fact that both of my sons injured their right hands pretty badly, one by grabbing the exhaust end of a power washer and the other by punching someone in a bar.
Chewy licked it clean (and he's fine despite the fact that dogs should avoid chocolate.)
Personally, I appreciate going to a "real" house with laundry baskets and dust. (Sorry, mom, my beautiful queen of windex and white carpeting.) And I love my friends that feel comfortable enough to cry in front of me and not get freaked out when I do the same. And I love my meetup people who show up and meetup people that do not. They have their reasons. I learn from these moments. I needed a lesson in not neglecting the routines that helped me rise and maybe also a good ego check. We're not AI robots. We are all humans with emotions. Life is bumpy. Let''s just all try to stop hiding our mess!