cords of attachment

57. TRANSFORMING YOURSELF

Excerpt from “My Lovedance”

I began My LoveDance® the year I turned 50, fully expecting great change by 2012.

In the past four years, I’ve experienced even more change. I’m not the only one. Many of my patients and family and friends experienced major transitions since 2012.

More change. More death. So many deaths.

I meditated on this once after providing grief counseling for a half a dozen patients in as many days. Many were young, unexpected deaths.

Why are so many souls transitioning at this time?

And I saw:

A bridge of light between the dead and their loved ones. And the earth being pulled through their connection into the next dimension.

By dimension, I mean higher vibration. Like Love is a higher vibration than fear.
We are transforming, all of us, even the earth.

It’s been a time of turmoil. A roller coaster of events creating great change. Some desired. Some unexpected. Some dreaded, but all needed. The whole world is transforming. People around the world are asking for change, gathering, protesting, demonstrating. The time is ripe for transformation. Why?

Because we cannot evolve without change. We have been like caterpillars consuming everything in our need to grow. And then it seems everything stood still…there was little growth…as if we were in a cocoon of our own making…some have called it a recession and financially perhaps it is, but I call it a transformation. For under the stillness, great change is occurring. The caterpillar is transforming into a butterfly. Soon the first of the butterflies will emerge.

You will see it as hope. Sweet happenings across the globe, in your neighborhood, perhaps in your own backyard…giving you hope…Like the feeling of wonder you get when you watch a butterfly emerge from a cocoon…then try its fragile wings in first flight. Hope.

So many have been cleaning house…our physical abodes and our subconscious as well. Getting rid of all that doesn’t serve us…it’s hard, but we must make room for the new. And you can’t receive if your arms and heart are full of old stuff.

I have been encouraging my patients to literally clean out their closets. When they have felt stuck, reliving old issues over and over again, seemingly making no progress, I encourage them to see their situation as a sign. It’s time to clean their dwelling place. Start with the physical. Yes, their homes.

We all have stuff in our closets. Old stuff that once served us but no longer fits, no longer useful. Stuff we don’t need anymore. Stuff that’s just taking up space. So if you haven’t used it for at least two years, you probably won’t. Give it away. Sell it if you must. But get it out of your closets, out of your cupboards, out of your home.

Lighten up and make room for the new.

Cleaning out our homes at the physical level will help us clean out ourselves. And this time I’m not talking about a liver cleanse. I’m talking about cleaning out our psycho-spiritual closets.

Those old beliefs in our consciousness. You know the ones:

• I’m not good enough.

• I don’t deserve better.

• I’m alone.

• Good things do not happen to me.

• I’m worthless.

• No one loves me.

• How can they? I don’t even love myself.

We all have these imprinted beliefs. Perhaps we’ve lived a life highlighting these beliefs. Perhaps we were imprinted with these negative beliefs in childhood. Perhaps we came into this life with these feelings.

Either way. These NOT GOOD ENOUGH beliefs lie deep in our consciousness and are often at the root of our real problems…Our health problems. Our financial problems. Our relationship problems. Our problems being happy and feeling love.

So let’s clear our closets. Let’s let go of that which no longer serves us.

No one really likes change. We get too comfortable where we are. Even if where we are is not in our best interest. So it takes the Divine to give us the boot! Right out of our comfort zone and into a new reality.

We suffer because we don’t know how to transform our selves gracefully.

I challenge each and every one of you to write down on a piece of paper everything in your closet that does not serve you. Everything… What are you ready to release?

• Your fear? Write it down.

• You’re not good enough? Write it down.

• Your feelings of worthlessness? Write it down.

• Your poverty? Write it down
• Your loveless life? Write it down.

• Your poor health? Write it down.

Now. Hold that piece of paper in your hand. Close your eyes. And express your gratitude for these negative beliefs. Yes, thank them! You cannot release them in anger…they will come back to stick to you like a burr. Release them with gratitude and they will release you.

Now. Once you are finished expressing your thankfulness for all the old beliefs you have written down that no longer serve you, it is time to burn that paper. You can bury it as well. But I prefer to release the smoke of what I no longer need into the universe. It will be transformed into something else…something better.

Then get another piece of paper and write down everything you desire.

I desire love.

I desire joy.

I desire to be debt free—financially and karmically.

I desire to be my best self.

Whatever you desire. Write it down. And then fold up the paper and write one word that comes to you on the outside of the folded paper. One word that represents all that you desire.

Freedom

Ease

Peace

Joy

Love

And let that one word be your mantra for the rest of the year. Place the paper on your altar, under or near a candle, by a sacred object, wherever you feel is most appropriate for this little piece of paper that holds your hope.

I like to do this ceremony at the winter solstice and refer to my mantra at the equinoxes and summer solstice. A reaffirming for me. And the mantra becomes a barometer for all I do that year.

On the winter solstice of 2001, my husband and I came up with a mantra of EASE for the coming year. Everything we did was using the barometer of our 2002 mantra. If we were struggling with a decision, then we were not in ease…so we chose the ease and things just started to flow. That’s how we found our current home. With ease, it flowed into our lives. In a way that we could not previously imagine.

EASE. What a great mantra. I suggest it to many of my patients who struggle so in their lives. Let go, and be at Ease.

Your mantra is a seed of energy you plant in your consciousness. Writing down your intentions and referring to them throughout the year is watering and fertilizing that seed so it might grow. Some seeds take a long time to sprout. Some grow into trees that take a long time to fruit. The seed of EASE sprouted into a lovely flower garden at first, but truly it is a deep-rooted plant…for EASE continues some fourteen years later bearing us precious fruit.

May this time find you nurturing your mantra seed. May your life be filled with great joy, with love, with beauty and with blossoms that attract butterflies of hope.

55. DISENTANGLE YOUR CORDS OF ATTACHMENT – Part Two

Excerpt from “My Lovedance”

I did this same exercise while writing my first book, LoveDance®. I wrote from the perspective of the heroine and like most novelists I used those in my life to base my characters. Envisioning how “Mary” would disentangle her cords of attachment to “Teoma”, I realized I must disentangle from my husband. For three days, he refused to go to work, sick to his stomach. I didn’t have a chance, while nursing him, to do the meditation let alone write it. Finally, he returned to work and I opened myself to receive the gift of the encounter with my laptop. While writing Mary’s disentanglement from Teoma, I disentangled my violet life cord from my husband’s vibrant green. The knots of our most recent struggles all the way back to those formed when our first child was born prematurely. The older knots were so well fermented I could sip the sweet wine of their gifts easily. The more recent knots—like our struggle with our changing roles as parents and the interference writing a book brought to our daily life—were more acrid in their newness, but I took the bitter cup and using the lubrication of love, found the gifts.

Mary and I floated free, breathing easily in the river of consciousness, while Teoma struggled to cling to the bank feeling very much abandoned. The moment I pushed “save”, my husband called. He was having a horrible day and “felt abandoned.” In spite of my reassurance, it took three weeks of repetitive visualizations before he relaxed and I no longer felt the painful ache of his sense of abandonment mirrored in my heart.

Now I did this same visualization with my firstborn, disentangling my violet from their indigo. My knots of expectation in their success in school were more difficult to unravel than the original knot between us representing their difficult birth. All the challenges of their prematurity and their numerous endocrine problems became one of my most profound gifts. My first child is why I do what I do, why I became an expert in clinical neuro-immune-endocrinology. The more recent knot representing my struggle with allowing them to be on their own, trusting that they would be safe and happy in a world without my constant maternal influence was a bit more difficult. The well-hidden gift turned out to be…accepting my transformation as a mother from nurturer-protector to confidante-advisor. In accepting them, I accepted myself. Twenty-four hours after I loosened the last knot between us, my wise child called me from college in San Francisco. “What are you doing down there, Mom? I feel lighter than ever!” I explained the disentanglement and they encouraged me to continue and “let go of us all, even yourself, and see, how enlightened you can be.”

So I did. Each and every significant person in my life, I disentangled from, I felt more and more free and my relationships with each person changed, transformed by love into something finer. I even disentangled from all I believed myself to be—a mother, a wife, a daughter, a sister, a healer, a woman, even from Deborah—and discovered my truth, which is joy.

Since disentangling from our daughter while she was a sophomore in high school, now that the time had come to let her grow up and go away to college, I am handling it better than I did with my first. With them, my body reminded me of the pain of birthing…I suffered from a sciatic condition (just like when I gave birth) that lasted from the moment I helped them fill out their college applications to the day I drove them up to the University of San Francisco. Now with my daughter, the pain is a bittersweet heartache, not physically manifested. The kind of ache that actually feels good, like watching a sad movie and crying your heart out and knowing the joy of being human is to feel passionately.

In fact, my ethereal connection with my children has been so acutely enhanced since disentangling from them, that I realize the knots of my entanglements interfered with the clarity of my perceptions. Since letting my daughter grow up, I sleep soundly, only twice bolting out of bed, feeling her panic and calmly contacting her (via the telephone, since telepathy is difficult through the veil of fear) and all was well. I’ve taught her to trust the inner knowing and realize that through trial and error she will learn to ride the wave of our ethereal connection.

Actually, when it came time to escort our daughter to college, my husband did pretty well. He cried of course, and while at first resisting disentanglement, he admitted to having worked on it and yes, he felt lighter, less fearful, more willing to let her go and trust she will be well. And we both began to receive the gift of her leaving, becoming closer than ever, falling in love all over again—just the two of us.

So how might you release the illusion of your entanglements? Envision your life color, whatever comes to you is fine, then envision the color of the other person. Your red cord and her blue cord are braided nicely for the most part, but knotted in places. Like a precious necklace entangled into the thread of a silk sweater you do not want to break either, but carefully loosen the knots using the lubrication of love.

I live near the beach and off the coast, derricks pump oil from the floor of the Pacific Ocean. Often I come home with tar stuck to the soles of my feet. Only oil gets it off—like dissolving like. These knots in your cords of attachment seem like tar, but they are gifts of love and only the lubrication of love can dissolve the knots. If you look with eyes of love you can find the gift in each knot. It’s not easy, but after two or three knots, the entangled cords start unraveling, setting you free to float in the river of consciousness. You do not need to share with the person you are releasing what you have done, but your relationship WILL change.

No matter how ugly the wrapping, there is always a gift of love waiting to be discovered. So just let go. Disentangling your cords of attachment will free you to be your truth—the most precious gift of all.

55. DISENTANGLE YOUR CORDS OF ATTACHMENT – Part One

Excerpt from “My Lovedance”

Driving back home on Southern California freeways crowded with tourists taking advantage of the last glorious summer weekend…an ache in my breast, a dark shadow where the sun once shone, an eclipse in my existence…I left my daughter, my sunshine, at the university in San Diego.

How long I’ve prepared for this transition, how many soulful meditations, how many intimate conversations with so many other mothers who have gone through this phase of life. Yet in spite of all my work, during that last kiss goodbye, the cords that bound our hearts pulled so tight to nearly snap.

I released my firstborn into the world four years before, but my daughter filled up the space that he left behind, so much so that now there is a void in my heart, in my home, in my life.

Having counseled my patients, hundreds of them, through life’s transitions, I should know better, I should take my own advice. Haven’t I told them how within the web of life, we float upon the river of consciousness, connected by invisible threads from heart chakra to heart chakra? Attached to everyone, and entangled with all we love, all we hate, all with whom we struggle.

So as a mother of an empty nest, some would advise that I cut the cord for her wellbeing and mine. But that is an old paradigm teaching and an illusion for we can never cut ourselves off from creation. We are all on the web, connected together. There is only one of us here. We are all part of the One Consciousness, all cells of the One Being. Every cell in my body knows it is a part of me just like I am a part of the earth and the sun, the plants and the creatures. Research by neuro-biologist, Candace Pert PhD, has shown that even when cells, tissues, or whole organs are removed, that the cells “remember” where they came from responding more like the donor than the transplant recipient. And I am connected to my daughter, imprinted since her birth, no matter how distant she is from me.

I know this to be true, because I can feel her emotion, especially her fear…it has wakened me up in the middle of the night when she has most needed me. I trust this connection even more so than my vision. It has served me as a mother and especially as a healer. I feel my patients’ dis-ease in the mirror of my being, but I have learned over the years not to embody their imbalances. Although connected to each and every one, I have learned to disentangle from the drama of being a healer and this is what I teach to my patients.

Imagine your life color as an infinitely strong gossamer thread emerging from your heart chakra to the heart of every other living thing. Each aspect of creation has its own color, born on the rainbow of light; its own vibration, its own sound. Imagine someone you are struggling with—your spouse, your child, your parent, your boss, whoever. What is their color? Imagine their cord and your cord braided together with knots scattered here and there. These knots represent your struggles, your difficulties in the relationship, your entanglements with each other.

Most of the people I counsel—my patients, my family, my friends—complain about the dramatic struggle within their relationships, know that they must make a change, come to me for help…and I tell them to disentangle from that being they are struggling with. We do the visualization together. They see their color, they see the color of the other person, they see themselves tied up in knots, they feel this entanglement literally as an ache in their breast, but when I begin to have them identify the knots in their cords of attachment, while they can name the problems that the knots represent, they have no idea how to untangle themselves. In fact, most are afraid, most claim they cannot let go.

Upon the river of consciousness, we all float, but entangled with others we struggle for breath, trussed together heart to heart, only one can breathe at a time, while the other holds her breath and prays. Everyone in our lives is a mirror to our souls, each reflecting back what we most need to learn, the judgments we hold of our humanity. What we like in another is what we appreciate in ourselves, what we dislike is what we need to change or accept in us.

How can you see in the mirror if your nose is pressed to the glass? That is why my patients struggle with disentanglement because they cannot see clearly what the lesson is in the struggle with another.

So I help them identify the most recent knot and going back in time a few more knots. Oh, they can name the knots, but not the gifts. What gifts? What could possibly be good about these struggles? Why, I tell them, every struggle is a gift that must be unwrapped. To receive the gift, first you must recognize it as a gift. Not all gifts have lovely exteriors in fact the most precious may be very ugly.

My Nana used to wrap up her garbage. Living in the city, the more compact the trash, the more likely the trash man would take it away, except Nana used to wrap it so nicely that Poppop would find it left on the step. The trash man thought it was a gift, so lovely was the wrapping. You see, you can’t always tell by the wrapping; life’s gifts are rarely wrapped so nicely.

My husband struggled with letting our daughter grow up. Once when he overstepped his parental boundaries, she told him after raising him for eighteen years she was done! He cried, “but I don’t know how to let you go.” She turned him over to me, “Mom, remember those cords of attachment? Dad needs your help.”

So I explained the concept and he amazed me by visualizing their life colors just as I do. He is forest-green, she—golden as sunshine. He could see how they were tied together in a lovely fishtail braid, and he could see the knots, especially how they struggled with her growing independence, but he couldn’t see the gift in lifting her curfew and allowing her some freedom before she took off to college. He could only see the sleeplessness until she arrived home at night, the worry about her making safe decisions. I pointed out that unlike his good friend who had not loosened the reins on his daughter, my husband after weeks of suffering adapted slowly albeit surely, finally falling asleep well before she arrived home. When she is away at college, he will rest, but his poor friend will not.

My husband agreed, but still struggled with receiving the gift of the knot, claimed, “I don’t want to let her go.” Heartbreakingly honest. Fearing to let go, fearing that we may not be able to float on our own in the river of consciousness, not trusting that we are still connected, we struggle and tighten the knots.

To Be Continued on Friday.

47. MY ALTAR, MYSELF

Excerpt from “My Lovedance”

Directly across from the door to our home is my altar. A lavender macramé cloth covers the small winged table. Objects sacred to me adorn the four corners with candles in the cardinal directions.

The altar changes from time to time according to my needs. Often my children ask to be put on the altar. And I make elaborate altars for them, holding the energy as they face challenges like when my eldest interviewed for their first real teaching job (and thankfully got it!), and my daughter tested for nursing school (and she got in too!) When Steve’s Gran first fell ill, he asked me to dedicate an altar for her. And after she passed, the altar reflected our love and devotion to her.

Today, items sacred to our upcoming retreat lie on the altar…The red cord I made to help us connect to our ancestors and each other. The crow’s feather bound in triple goddess colors that helped us choose the theme of our retreat. A golden frame filled with photos of men I treasure — my husband, my father, my grandfather — my beloved divine masculine.

And in the front — my Box of Me.

I made this one up… but what healing has come from creating a Box of Me. It started just after my father’s surgery, my sisters had moved him into a senior apartment complex and found a box of old photos. In it was a photo I do not recall, but looking at the black and white image of me at thirteen months old dressed in an Easter dress holding a little purse and gazing out with old soul eyes, I remembered. Showing my parents how to parent me and feeling their emotions. I took that photo and pasted it on the Box of Me. Somehow I would heal the child within. And through the Box of Me, placing me on my altar.

Inside the Box of Me, the mementos change yet each represents my dreams, my hopes, my intentions. I’ve guided many patients and some women friends in the creation of a Box of Me. How therapeutic it has been to honor ourselves, to put into this special box all that we hope for and say to the universe YES! Yes, I am. And more so to fall in love with ourselves. Because that’s where love starts. If we don’t love and honor and cherish ourselves, how can we love and honor and cherish each other?

It’s hard for most women to make a Box of Me…harder yet to place anything sacred within their Box of Me. It is start, a fresh start to healing the child within. I ask them to choose a photo of themselves that is before the time they remember the trauma of childhood. The innocent time before becoming domesticated into humanity. A time when they remember being happy. Few go back to adolescence, most go back early childhood, some all the way back to infancy.

In the center lies the golden runner embroidered by Steve’s Yia Yia…a wedding gift given to me by his father who came from Greece to witness our union 28 years ago. Upon the runner sits Ascension.

43. CAUSE WE’RE ITALIAN

Excerpt from “My Lovedance”

A few days before Steve’s Gran died, she was expressing her gratitude: “I’m so fortunate to have my family taking care of me.” My mother-in-law responded, “Of course, Mom, it’s what families do.” Gran smiled, “It’s because we’re Italian.”

My mother-in-law gently explained that they are not Italian. (In fact very Anglo-Saxon. The family name is Jones!) Now I’m from an Italian American family and Gran spent an awful lot of time with us…I do believe Italian rubbed off on her. How could it not? We spent most of the time in the kitchen cooking. The rest of the time in the garden enjoying a cup of coffee. Gran loved her coffee. While she was here, I never drank so much in my life! “Come, Debbie, have a cup of coffee with me.” She would ask late in the afternoon. “Oh, and maybe we can have those cookies we made the other day. Just a couple. We don’t want to spoil our dinner.” How could I refuse? It was precious time spent with an amazing woman…my only grandma.

Italians pass the time playing cards. Gran never played cards before, but she learned fast. Her youngest daughter was surprised, “Mother doesn’t play cards!” Gran was brought up in the Reformed Church of the Latter Day Saints…no card playing allowed, no dancing, no drinking, no swearing. Well, in our house Gran played Gin-Rummy, enjoyed “just a sip” of Steve’s homemade wine and no, not a virgin margarita, but a real one “you know I love the salted rim!” and once we were having a frank discussion after dinner about the consequences of proposition 8 and Gran got upset, “It’s no one’s damn business who people love!” Oh yes, and she and I would dance. Foregoing the walker, I would hold her tightly in my arms and we’d sway to the music.

When Kyra would come home, we would all be in the kitchen making something delicious. My Mom would join us—she runs my practice which is right here on our property so I could be home for the kids and then for Gran—four generations making fig jam, stuffing zucchinis, preparing yet another meal. Mom would squeeze Gran and give her a kiss. “It’s not a kitchen without a grandma in it!” Just as Gran took me in as her granddaughter, she treated my mother as a daughter.

Gran had enough love for all of us and more. Years ago, she “adopted” a young black man who reveres her. And her Hispanic caretaker came to the hospital in February, laid her head next to Gran’s and wept. She stayed hours petting and fussing over Gran.

Gran worked in the Farmers Market for thirty something years making friends with Jewish, Asian, Hispanic and Blacks. She did not see race or color or religion or sexual preference. Gran only saw people. And she was always delighted to meet them, all of them…and perhaps share a cup of coffee?

Steve and I were reminiscing. I know you tend to elevate the dead, forgetting their worldly transgressions and focusing on the good. But no need to embellish Gran. Like Steve said, “She was always genuinely glad to be see me, accepted me completely and my presence brought her joy.” Gran treated all of us like this…in her presence our truth shone…because she really “saw” us…she looked past the shadows and embraced the light in each of us…

Steve believes karma is incurred over your lifetime. He’s spent his consciously banking good karma. Gran didn’t know much about karma…but her bank was full. I believe karma can be imprinted. My research shows it begins in the womb…remember the Red Cord…yet I have been branded by Gran. She has imprinted me to the roots of my soul.

When the family made plans for the funeral, I called my mother-in-law and told her “Mom said the Italian side of the family is cooking! Oh, and we don’t do petit fours.” She laughed and told her sister. I could hear Auntie in the background. “Thank goodness, I love tomato, mozzarella and basil.”
I’ve entitled the menu—Gran’s Day—the day we gathered to celebrate her life: Bruschetta, melon and prosciutto, marinated grilled veggies, olives, of course lots of bread to dip in Mom’s sauce…she’s doing most of the cooking. I’m the baker in the family… Gran loved my holiday cookies and they go so very well with a cup of coffee.

Mom comes up behind me and gives me a hug and a kiss on the back of my neck, “Someday you’ll do this for me.”

There are no tears as we connect in the kitchen—Gran joins us—to reminisce and to prepare delicious food, lots of it… It’s what family does…because we’re Italian.

27. IMPATIENCE

Last minute doesn’t work for me. I am most like the goddess when all my bowls are spinning gracefully in the air. For me, last minute feels as if I’m a clown juggling too many balls knowing they’ll soon come tumbling down upon me.

I pack a week ahead. Just be sure I have everything and everything fits. I like to plan ahead for events, ready when the day comes. One of my dearest friends is a Last Minute Lizzie. Every Easter, she would invite us over and twenty more family and friends to celebrate. We would arrive early to help, and find that they were in the midst of a remodeling project (she liked to take advantage of the gathering to get her husband to fix up the house) and she would still need to shop! So off I would go with her while Steve stayed to help him and frantically we would get it together…rarely before the guests arrived…

My sisters like to fly by the seat of their pants too, waiting to shop when we arrive a day or two before the holiday. That can drive me crazy! I need to plan and be ready. After our parents divorced, my home became the gathering place for my three sisters, their spouses and all their children. It was stressful since there was so much to do before they arrived. I wanted to be able to spend time with them, but was usually so wound up by the preparations and wanting everything to be perfect that their visits became more and more of a burden.

No matter how well I was doing at controlling my eating disorder, the stress of the holidays would bring Bulimic Deb out of her cage. I yearned for quiet holidays. The more stressed I got, the more I would find myself counseling patients with the same Superwoman Syndrome. I would tell them—just say No!—yet could not take my own advice. Finally, after ten years of this holiday madness, I told one of my sisters I couldn’t do it anymore. It was their turn to play Mom.

Yet it wasn’t where we met that made me so anxious. It was being in their energy. I could tolerate my friend’s frenetic energy, but not my sisters. We were too close and would fall into the roles we always played from the drama of our childhood. The more I found peace in my own life, the more frenetic their energy felt. I couldn’t seem to stay centered when I was in their midst.

Every gathering there would be blow up. I was always looking for their souls and they were hiding behind our roles.

Nov 28th, 2004 Finally a breakthrough with my sisters! Always I have dreaded our family gatherings. Early in my adult life, I fretted over the work related to the holidays, then feelings of unworthiness as I worried about the outcome. Was everything good enough? Was I? Lately dealing with deep seated emotion that threatens to boil over, I have not shared my life with my sisters fearing that we could not find common grounds to safely communicate. Still there are gaps but we are closer after this weekend’s tumultuous confrontation, all four of us crying in the bathroom. We needed a red tent and had to create our own chamam experience. Our passion brought on spooky weather. Bitter rain, harsh winds targeted the house. Our husbands took the kids to the mall where the weather was nicer. My sisters claimed that I did not share all with them and I replied that I feared to reveal to them the true fullness of my emotion—my power can be overwhelming. They pushed, then got blown away, then came back for more. My sisters are hardier than I thought. I do feel loved by them but do not believe I appreciate them fully. My sisters are aspects of the divine. They say I feel superior, but I see their unhappiness, their fear, their unwillingness, it seems, to progress. Yet I realize that just because I have leapt so far away from what was our mutual starting point does not mean that they have not also moved. Steve has kept pace, and in their own way, so have they.

As a point being I am supported by their effort, faith, and love. Without them would I be where I am in this moment? I am buoyed up by their being, my own being reflected in the stillness of theirs, in the wake of their progress, exponential reflections of our conscious evolution. Why must we name our faults and weaknesses to equalize the interaction? Yet I do it when I counsel with patients, admitting my humanness, and we grow together.

Over the years I’ve learned to flow more easily when things don’t always fall into place. Now I graciously step into my friend’s house and just lend a hand. And she too has learned to get it together earlier and enjoy her guests.

For my 50th birthday, my sisters treated me to a weekend away. I prefer being in nature so we took a boat trip out to Anacapa Island. No drama just pleasant memories of picnicking on the bluff in the midst of nesting seagulls. My sisters still want to know where I am coming from…I have changed so much. On a beach walk, one expressed concern that she thought I felt our family was dysfunctional. I smiled…three of us had eating disorders, all of us grew up with disordered body images, our mother still struggled with self-esteem and our father lived like a hermit… “I guess every family is somewhat dysfunctional,” I replied.

Then the conversation became confrontational and for the first time in six months, I felt that need to purge. I placed my hand on my stomach and watched as my sister expanded into warrior pose, then I was cast back into our childhood dining room feeling the fear bubbling up as she argued vehemently with our father—always fighting another’s battle—and ending up in trouble herself. And I came back to the present and spoke my truth.

“Thank you for embodying the warrior in our family. But I am not the enemy. I am your sister and I love you.” And since then, there has been peace.

It took me 50 years to flow even with my family. How strange it feels to not care about the outcome, but to be fully in the moment with them. I can get used to this. ☺

Excerpt from My LoveDance. Available on Amazon

16. SEEDS OF INTENTION

At the fall meeting of the Ojai Grandmother’s Council, we were reminded of the seeds of intention that we planted in the spring. Some could not remember their intentions, some remembered but did not tend them. I was acutely aware of mine. My birthday is on the Spring Equinox and every year I plant seeds of intention with the hopes of a great harvest come fall. That year my intention was to be open to receive abundance.

Oh, I have much. My life is very rich. A beautiful home, fertile land, healthy, happy children, an amazing relationship with my beloved husband, a fulfilling healthcare practice, yet I feel that there is more…that I am to go out into the world and share my wisdom…and to do that…I need resources…money and people to help…and although my business pays the bills, there is debt incurred to build the practice, to manufacture Genesis Gold®…and my book—LoveDance®—waiting for release.

Since planting my seeds of intention, I’d been acutely aware of the abundance in my life, living in gratitude as the universe has seen fit to challenge me…with death, and loss, and sacrifice. As if I had to empty my Soul Purse over and over to make room for the abundance to come.

That night… I have sequence of five dreams…

All the time I’m dreaming, I’m lucid. I fall in and out of sleep after a tremendous hot flash at 12:30—three hours after I fell asleep—and spend time rolling around considering what I should do about my hormonal challenge…then set my intention to know what it’s all about at the soul level and fall asleep…

…The first dream opens with a gathering of women in a great big house. I’m trying to settle in and my roommate shows up. One of my young patients and she’s distraught, hands me her pants. She needs another pair just like them. I tell her pants are expensive in…Italy…wow, that’s where we are!… and she hands me $50. I look at the pants…olive green suede polyester nothing wrong with them except a blood stain at the crotch. She is mortified that she started her period…this is the patient I saw last week who missed her period…I explain she can wash them out, but she will never wear them again—stained with women’s blood…I am saddened by her shame, I want to make it better for her…and then I see that she is me as a girl not at peace with my femininity and all women afraid they are unclean as the world has treated them. And I feel a deep sense of gratitude for finally embracing my feminine power…

…and the dream shifts. I’m with the same gathering, but so crowded, too many women… A fake sense of feminine power emanates from them—over inflated, dangerous—a roomful of women wearing pants under skirts. I need to get away. But it’s so crowded. Finally, I remember I can fly! I start to push off away from the crowded staircase…and another woman, one from my women’s circle…says “Hold her!” I am chased by two women, struggling to gain altitude through the crowded place, they grasp my trailing legs, but cannot catch me. I feel light but too low…the energy is one of a dog teasing its owners into a game of chase– I head for the light, but they close the opening before I can fly there…I’m trapped in a great big tent! …Lucid, I try to wake up…and realize until I get the message of the dream sequence, I’m not going anywhere…I fly up through ropes, tight ropes. Below me, all the women I’ve gotten involved with in this life and beyond—from girls scouts, to sorority sisters, to the nurse practitioners I led, and the women’s circle, the grandmothers, and interspersed are the women gurus who wove in and out of my life these past 13 years…all who wanted me to join them, to lead them… …my lucid self so happy to be flying again (I haven’t flown in my dreams since the women’s retreat just before the Autumn Equinox where we worked on our karmic imprints)…How funny that my subconscious traps me in a circus tent with crazy women. I laugh…

….and slip into another dream. A great gathering of all my dead patients. Everyone’s there…Eddie in the background—smoking! —Lacy, Michael, many whose names I’ve forgotten but not their faces—whole and healthy—and their energy. All doing whatever they please…peace emanates from them. The last patient I buried is there too. A sense of guilt carried from my waking world trickles into my dreamtime. Barbara is the spokeswoman and she’s explaining where Anna is on her spirit path so soon after her death. “There is no need for regret. You danced your best dance with each of us. We are where we need to be at this time in human consciousness.” Gran’s there too. And she is walking very strangely…like she’s in a space suit, sort of praying mantis like. I wonder if her walker would help, and Gran apologizes…it’s broken, how difficult it is to move on earth, so much easier over there. I have a catalog in my hands and pick out a handicap toilet for her…pink and orange!…which seems silly since I know Gran isn’t staying…and feel bad that we didn’t make these accommodations for her while she was alive. I show her the toilet. “I never had such a bright toilet!” she says, “but I don’t think I’ll need one. I’m not staying, dear. This is the first time you let me in.” True, she has visited Steve many times. I inquire about the others. She says “I have very nice visits with Steve, but the rest are harder.” I hope she isn’t spending too much time and effort trying to contact those who are not ready to receive her. She laughs and says, no she is very busy over there, but not to worry. Time is not an issue for her anymore and effort, well it is easier to be in the presence of love than fear… In my observer, lucid dreamer state, I want to spend more time with the dead, knowing it’s precious…it’s the first time I’ve dreamt of Gran and she feels so real…our conversations though bizarre yet so genuine. The only one I miss in the dreams is Hope…she’s not with the grateful dead…but I’m not sad. I know my beloved Great Dane, my Hope, is where she belongs…

…then I’m on a huge field, tossing a yellow grass-stained nerf football to a black dog and a blond boy. Every pass, they switch off, I’m not a good thrower and neither of them catch well. We pass through many other people’s games/lives, communicate with them and move on. All are men and boys…fathers and sons. Playing amongst a group of black men and boys, one of which compliments my butt as I bend over the tub to find the dog tied up like a broken doll almost fetal like. I keep finding its limp body left behind with the ball underwater. At first I dismiss the comment as I did in my youth with an excuse and then I replay the scene and graciously thank the man and he swells and merges with the other black men, their sons receiving their vibration as the sacred feminine received them…back to the fetal dog and used up ball left underwater…I realize the boy has moved on… this boy-dog issue I know is mine…my inner boy child leaving me and the spirit dog connecting him to the otherworld left behind…this is part of the healing the divine masculine within me…

…then I’m back in the house—my recurring house dream. Usually in the “house” dream, I am so frustrated…my sisters keep me from getting what I need to get done, I’m always cooking or cleaning and everything is a disaster…this time I am just watching while being in the midst of them…like I’m watching a home movie while being in it … this time, instead of wandering the never-ending rooms, and halls, I stay in the kitchen-family room where all the family is gathered. It’s our rental, yet I have no sense of ownership… The family has rented it before and now have a disaster with the microwave. I am surprised I am not making a fuss that they are trying to microwave a whole chicken… Steve even looks to me for a response, but it is like I am just observing, it’s all very funny and we’re playing our silly parts again and again with the same outcome, I even tease about some goofy fake fur pants I plan to get my brother-in-law, and my fashionable sister looks at me horrified… Later I am to meet Steve for a trip, he’s coming back to the house to pick me up, but my sister needs my car to go to work…and she’s dressed in these too big jeans, strange polka dot hose and heels, a vest she made up out of our dead PopPop’s pajama top and a nice leather jacket on top of it all. I send her out with my blessing, but need to get my purse out of the car because it has everything I need to go away with Steve. I’m surprised at the floppy little purse that seems so empty (my violet soul purse with a golden clasp)…I never carry purses in my dream…always have what I need somewhere on me… And then I am my daughter meeting her beloved to go to Hawaii. ..and I realize all is superfluous because I must get ready for a wedding…

Then I wake up!

The energy of the dreams was curiosity…taking a trip down the rabbit hole of my subconscious…and at times I try to get out but I know it’s all a dream and stay to learn more. There’s no fear, just bemusement. I know I am growing while in the dark dream state…I intended this before falling asleep …I know these dreams represent what I have cleared from my soul purse…my fears of being a woman, my tendencies to get captured by others and taken advantage of, the shame of failing in my healing practice, letting go of the boy to allow room for the divine masculine, being with my family all the interior mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, daughters, sons and not being smothered by my relationships with them but seeing the humor in life and being gracious with my humanity…then going on the next stage of my soul journey, preparing to experience the sacred marriage of divine feminine and divine masculine within me in the heart of the earth…starting all over again like newlyweds… The last sequence with the empty purse (I never dream of purses!) with Hope not part of the dead but so deeply embedded in my soul, not something to be cleared out of my soul “purse”… something to keep always.

This crazy dream sequence was in fact…the past six months of soul work from the time I planted the seed of intention to be open to receive abundance…through all the work of clearing out all that doesn’t serve me, and making room for a great harvest, a filling up of soul…a completeness of self…whole, finally to be whole.

Excerpt from My LoveDance. Available on Amazon