shining a light on the complexities of being women with spirit

Posts tagged ‘divine expression’

Post Natal Depression: Finding A Way Out Of The Darkness

Keyhole to sunlight

I’ve been off the air – but for good reason.  All of a sudden, I’ve become CRAZY BUSY!  Writing for PAY!!!   Fortunately it’s not been a tearing-my-hair-out-nutso-freakout kind of busy; more of a swimming, measured, holy-cow-I’m-amazed-it’s-finally-flowing kind of busy!   I have FINALLY found a way to break out of my shell and follow my heart, without setting off those internal sabotage alarms that have so frequently postponed my abundance in the past.

You see, I’ve been fighting sooo hard, for sooo long, trying to FORCE life to do things the way I wanted. Intellectually, I know that this does not work. I know that if you have to consistently bash your head against a wall to get something done, it’s probably not going to work in the long term.  But do you think I could make myself do something different?HELL NO!  I had to do it the hard way!

I wrote a book called “Head Space-Meditate Your Way to Study Success” – I LOVE this book – it’s my other baby. Writing this book took me out of a very, very dark space after the birth of my baby girl.  At 10 days old, her dad and I separated; messily, angrily, painfully.  My universe collapsed around me and the last shred of self worth I had been desperately clinging to was obliterated.  It has taken years to rebuild my reality from that destruction.  I had a debilitating case of Post Natal Depression (PND) – or perhaps it should be called Post Natal DEMOLITION – who I was, what I was, where I was going, where I’d been – the entire thing was wiped from the face of the earth.  I had to start again from scratch. I was thrust out into a foreign world with no yardstick,  no anchor, no way to know how to move forward.  So for a while I didn’t.  I froze.  And I fell apart.

But you know what?  There is always an ‘upside to the upside down’.  There has to be.  This was the only thing that kept me alive – that, and the knowledge that my children had no one else.  If I didn’t stay alive, who would raise them?

Then one night, in the background of my inner torment and terror,  I heard it.  Somewhere in the depths of my total annihilation there was a tiny, calm and soothing voice.  It belonged to an infinitesimal spark of light.  I barely noticed it among the chaos of the white noise in my head.  It whispered softly “Write. Just Write“.

It took a year of  writing to finish the first draft; screaming babies, no sleep, mashed pumpkin smeared through my hair, breakdowns, breakthroughs, nurses, doctors and psychologists for me to crawl out of the darkness and back to a place where I could see there was a light.  From there, I took a lurching approach to life, clawing my way up a very slippery slope to relative sanity and a loosely hung-together semblance of reality.  I had glimpses of happiness and purposeful direction that kept me going, but for years I struggled on most days.

I extracted all my superannuation from the government under financial hardship and published 1500 copies of the book.  I estimated that I could triple my investment and we’d be on our way. For 3 hard and long years, I pushed on, and we struggled financially. I’m tenacious, if nothing else, so I just kept going.  I marketed, I networked, I promoted, I lectured and still was not able to pay the ever mounting bills.  I had to move us to a very tiny house, visit the salvos for gifts of warm clothes in winter, and there were too many days that kids ate and I went without.

I thought writing Head Space was going to be the saviour that my little family needed.  I knew in my heart that the  book’s content was great.  I thought if I could just publish it all our financial problems, both present and future, would be solved.   I was SO WRONG and SO RIGHT. I guess I misinterpreted the quiet voice inside.   I was so convinced that I would make bucket loads of money and be ‘saved’. For the life of me I could not understand why the business side of my book didn’t take off.

This book is fantastic, life-changing and completely useful and helpful in so many ways.  So, I just couldn’t comprehend why it wasn’t saving us. BUT IT WAS… I just couldn’t see it.  As it turns out, the saviour was the process of writing;  meditation, acceptance of anger, sadness and grief, self-searching and discovery of strengths I never knew existed, heightened resourcefulness, a growing resilience, dedication to my children, and a determination to pull myself out of my very deep, dark hole.

Eventually, those years of hell brought me to a place of surrender – not to defeat (I never say die!) – but to being utterly and truly ME.  Without all that strife and struggle, I would not be so completely certain of who I am and what I’m capable of.

In the last 6 months, I have come of age.  I finally GET IT.  And the abundance is flowing.  What happened? What changed?  Well, the things I have known and thought might be true on a head level for around 20 years have suddenly integrated into my being.  I knew that Head Space would save us, I just couldn’t see how until now.  Something just clicked inside and I realise that the whole time I had been redefining ME from the ground up.

It’s easy in hindsight.  I really just needed to slow down, enjoy life, be focused and deliberate about my career without being dogged, and write because I LOVE TO WRITE.  More that that, if I write about things I love, abundance flows.  Now, I follow my heart and my intuition and simply use my mind as a tool to direct my energy.

I write this today because I have just had my first paid article published.  I am SOOO grateful for post natal depression. There were moments when I thought I wouldn’t survive, or that my children wouldn’t.  But it has been a blessing in disguise.  I am so deeply humbled by the workings of the universe and for all the struggles.  Now I can write from a place of love because I know and understand that the depths of pain I’ve experienced are the perfect indicator of the capacity of my heart to love and enjoy an abundant life.  I can now write what I love to write and be paid to help others by educating, enlightening and easing their suffering through the written word.

love post natal depression

What a privilege.

What perfection.

When have you discovered inner strength from adversity?

xxK

PS:  I started this post to tell you about the article I’ve had published, but got sidetracked in a bit of a gratitude rant! The content is nothing mind-blowing, but as you can see, it’s worth a great deal more than the money to me  Here’s the LINK to my recently published article.

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SHUT UP! I’m Busy Here.

Stressed woman screaming

Breathe in, breathe out, breathe in, breathe out…

That’s it. That’s all there is to it.

Simple, right?

I have deadlines.  Lots of them.  Don’t get me wrong, I love a good deadline – it keeps the creative juices going for me, keeps me on my toes.  I get that ‘edge’ that helps me stay sharp and makes me feel alive.

But when you’re on the edge like that; for days, weeks, months… fatigue happens.  Life is good right now.  Everything is pretty much peachy.  But today, I’m weary.  My heart is crying out for attention, my soul starved for substance.  I’m not yet bone achingly wrung out, but a couple of weeks in my ‘sickbed’ is on the horizon if I don’t stop very, very soon.  I can recognise this state now. I used to push through it and hit the proverbial brick wall for months in order to fulfill my perceived responsibilities to others. Not anymore.  It’s not worth the pain.

So… with my internal ‘To Do’ list blinking URGENT in neon before me, and my brain’s ranting, panicked voice in the background, I deliberately slow myself down enough to grab a coffee from the local café. I didn’t sit down long enough to drink it though. Oh no!  My brain won’t let me slow down that much just yet. It still holds the upper hand. But I’m onto it. I’ve noticed it’s rushing me.  Now it can’t hide.  It’s just a matter of time.  I know how to get around that little voice that pushes me ever onwards, striving to rush yelling at me to “get it all done now”, and “don’t you dare stop for a moment of solitude and silence”.  Today, I’m onto it, that kind of talk is just not on! Today, I want off the edge.

I gratefully receive my take-a-way caramel latte, half -shot caramel because sugar makes me more hyper. My brain thinks coffee is God, so it’s cool with proceedings so far, thinking it’s got me by the horns. I walk towards the pulsing markets. “Oh!  More rushing and activity. Goodie” my brain prattles at me. It knows it can hide its agenda and its relentless voice amidst the noise and bustle.  I have to go through that teeming sea of people to get back to my car. But instead of pushing and forcing my way through the hubbub with purpose and urgent determination to get back to work as my brain would have it, I purposefully change my pace to a cruising amble and veer suddenly towards the park.  I can go that way too. My brain resists “What are you doing?  This way is longer. You’ll be late. This is out of the way, much less efficient use of your time and energy here, you idiot”.  My rebellious nature kicks in and I ignore it, slowing even more.

In the park, excellent. Now I’ve got the upper hand.  Nature will do that. Nature is always on our side and always wins eventually.  I glance up at the blue sky through the canopy, the first sunlight in days dapples warmth on my face and I let a quiet smile reach my lips. “AGGGHH, she’s enjoying this” screams my brain. “Someone stop her, I’m losing control here people”. I wonder who its talking to?

Then, in total defiance of my internal pressures and self-imposed deadline to get home by 10am, I hesitate. My strolling comes to a dead stop, just for a moment. I break into a grin and winningly say to my freaking brain “SHUT UP! I’m busy here.

And it does.

All it takes is that one moment.  I only need a moment to smell the damp earth beneath my feet, drink in the sight of verdant, luminous grass, immerse myself in the music of a hundred different birds.  In that moment, I find my peace, replenish my energy stores and hit the refresh button.  There is silence there, once my brain knows its place.  It just needs to know I’m in charge.

“Shut up.” I repeat more kindly this time, “I’m busy here. Rest now. It’s all okay. Shhh”.

Awareness fills the silence.

Breathe in, breathe out, breathe in, breathe out.

Simple.

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I Don’t Believe In Mid-Life Crisis

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I’ve heard and seen a lot about the Mid-life Crisis recently.  You know – the guy who wakes up on the morning of his 40th birthday kisses his wife and tells her he’s leaving the family for his 18 year old male secretary, rushes out and buys a red Ferrari and moves to Mexico. Yes, it’s a cliche. But watching a program on ABC last night about womens’ experiences of midlife got me thinking. You see, I’m 39. I’m staring right down the barrel of 40 and it is so strange to me that I’m here.

Again with the cliches, but I don’t FEEL 40 (or 39 for that matter). I feel young, excited by life, positive about my future and cant wait to see what treasures the next 40 years bring. Sometimes I have insecure, fearful moments and feel like a lost 5 year old girl. With my partner I get to re-live the anticipation of a ‘first kiss’ each time we meet up. My childhood innocence and wonder at life has been reborn and tempered with wisdom of experience and increased creativity, knowledge and inner certainty.  I am quite simply better at being me. Inside I am so far from 40 it’s surreal and as foreign to me as speaking Latin.

Granted, my body doesn’t share my enthusiasm for early morning starts and long nights up chatting with friends over wine. Since having kids, parts are sagging where I’d prefer they weren’t, I’m a bit heavier than I like to be (lets face it I’m overweight), and my skin is in the worst shape of my life, even when matching it against the days of teenage acne. But, if I accept all that as ‘it is what it is’ for now, and that I have steps in place to change that, I’m the happiest I’ve ever been.

I think I had my midlife crisis early in life.  I’ve always struggled with the idea of deciding your career fate at 15 years old, going to Uni and settling into a job you hold for life. You might as well shove me in a jail cell and feed me bread and water (my body hates gluten!). So I did not go easily into this warped ideal. I fought and kicked my way around it, tried to conform – I did it badly and with much pain and trauma – and at the age of 28 I gave up. The age 28 is what astrologers call Saturn Return. This means that the position of Saturn in your birth chart returns to the same position it was in when you were born. The result is that if you’re not living the purpose you were born for, your whole world comes crashing down around your feet. This was certainly the case for me and the fall out lasted until age 35. My life was leveled like Ground Zero, but that’s another story.

As a teenager, I was always questioning the whole ‘get a career, get married, have babies and a puppy, save money, get a house and ‘fit in’ mentality. AGH! NIGHTMARE!  But I think Saturn returning pulled the cork out on the bottle of a lifetime of angst with living the way I’d been told was ‘right’. Being involved in spiritual pursuits was not new for me, but instead of reading about it and slotting it in-between my afterwork drinkies and corporate climbing networking meetings, I took it by the horns and began in earnest to ask myself the hard questions…

1. How do I want to show up in the world?
what does K want to look like to the greater populous.

2. How do I want to feel about my life?
Fulfilled, happy, creative, interesting, adventurous, variety.

3. What do I want to experience in life?
Opportunity, wealth & abundance, joy, laughter, love, creativity.

4. What do I want to be my legacy when I am gone?
To show others that it is possible to live your dreams. To lead by example- an example of bravery under adversity, creativity and resourcefulness under duress, and positivity despite the odds. To encourage creative expression of our divine essence in the material world.

Note the creative expression theme?  If you ask yourself these questions, you’ll probably find a theme too!  That’s the clue to your purpose!

That legacy one can feel a bit morbid, but if you can get past the ‘when I’m gone’ part and really delve into the depths of what you’re life means, you can find the true purpose of what your divine essence is and how it is mean to play out in this lifetime.

I constantly refer back to these questions – they’re posted on my cupboard doors to remind me every day what I am all about. Not what I strive to reach by the age of 40, but what I am to be in every moment that I am alive. As I reach 40, I realise that I am closer to living the life of my dreams than ever before. I don’t believe in a mid-life crisis. I believe in a mid-life awakening. My awakening came early in my chronological life possibly due to the excessive trauma I experienced in my teens and early 20’s. Some people manage to bury their heads in the ‘american dream’ for much longer than age 40, but eventually I believe we either wake up, or we die. Death can be literal or metaphorical – metaphorical death means you give up on your dreams, your aspirations and your spark for life gets snuffed out. You become a hollow, bitter shell of a person, grey and mundane. I would not wish this kind of death on anyone and think a physical death would be preferable.

I continually ask myself the 4 questions above. I have goals to improve my physical health so that I can match the vitality of my physical being with the energy of my spiritual one. I am constantly finding ways to be more creative, dedicate more time and presence to loving my children. I am open to opportunities to experience the abundance, gifts and beauty of our wondrous planet.  And on a minute by minute basis, I am aware of my legacy. You see it at work here!  So… approaching ‘mid life’, I am excited! If there is to be a crisis, I invite it openly and lovingly with excited anticipation because it is another sensational opportunity to enhance awareness, to evolve myself and give back what I learn to humanity.

What a gift.

xxK

I Am All That I Am… and more!

I’ve started this blog because I am really over being labelled.   You cannot put me in a box that says ‘writer’ or ‘mother’ or ‘cellist’.  All of me does not fit under just one label.  I’m more like a diamond with multifacets of being-ness. What you see depends where the light is shining.

Sometimes the light illuminates my ‘writer’ facet, other days I shine it on my ‘earth mother’ facet.  I am also an artist, teacher, facilitator, student nurse, mother, girlfriend, daughter, spiritual being, earthy nature lover, author, traveler and musician.  It’s true.  I am all these things, and more.

The point is, I am not defined by what I do with my time but how brilliantly the shines a light on an aspect of my unique expression of divine source.  Some of the things I do are directly connected and aligned with my source-self and light up the world illuminating the path for others.  But there are other things I do that just light up the room so that I can see three feet in front of my own eyes.

Here in this virtual space, you will find me to be complex, dark, bitter, wise, reflective, musical, thoughtful, light, sad, anxious, loving, joyful and creative.  What you will not ever find is a fake person. Sometimes I will make mistakes, post things other people think I should not, try too hard, think too much, and fly in the face of convention.  I suspect that some readers may decide they don’t like me or what I have to say.  But others?  Well, I bet I’m not the only one in the world who feels they just cannot ignore the calling to be utterly and truly real.

I am all these things, I do all these jobs, I have all these facets.  None of them in their singularity define me, but together they make up the complex and spirited women named Kristy.

I am one diamond, many facets.

Which facet of your divinity are you illuminating today?

Which facet of your divinity are you illuminating today?

xxk

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