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Heart Clutter

Heart Clutter

When I was a young girl, I thought a lot about Love. I was surrounded by it. I could see it in my parents eyes when my Dad came home from work and how Mom greeted him. I could see it in my Grandparents, in Aunts and Uncles, neighbours, and siblings. Then something happened.

People began to fall out of love, get divorces, even die, and family units broke down. I remember my neighbours, two people I adored and friends of my parents. I thought they had the perfect marriage, until one day, they decided to divorce. It really blew my mind at the time, as they seemed so happy, so content. I thought if it happened to them, it could happen to anyone.

I wondered what love really is. I wondered why does it end. I wondered how can love turn into hate? I concluded that perhaps they were not in true love after all, that maybe it was something else that brought them together. I didn’t want to believe that the fairy tales of life could have anything but happy endings. Yet, they did. Over and over, and I got through them.

I guess deep in my heart, in my core, I held a belief that if you love, it cannot die. It cannot change. This belief has stuck with me and has helped me through some really tough and trying times. You see, for me, if I can continue to love, even though circumstances change, behaviours change, proximity changes, values change, beliefs change, communication breaks down, hurtful things are exchanged, the love can still remain.

Life can bring us all kinds of clutter. It can bring us all kinds of thoughts and emotions. It can get pretty damn confusing at times and cause us to want to escape the hurt, the pain, and sometimes, the truth. We begin to react and build our walls, we shut ourselves off, we blame, we may even strike out in anger in one form or another.

I often think of that song ‘Love Hurts’ by Nazareth; you know the one,

“Love hurts

Love scars

Love wounds and marks

Any heart not tough or strong enough

To take a lot of pain, take a lot of pain

Love is like a cloud, it holds a lot of rain

Love hurts

Ooh love hurts”

And yes, it seems sometimes that is true. Yet once we clear the clutter from our hearts and get to the real core of the matter, it usually is an opportunity for spiritual growth. Sure, our human selves may not want to do it, or fear doing it, or even feel the need we don’t have to do it, however I believe sometimes the Universe, Source, God, whatever name you want to give to the higher power, wants us to have this experience.

What I have learned over and over in my lifetime, is; “It is not what happens to you that matters, it is what you do with it.” Along the same lines, I also believe; “Things don’t happen to you, they happen for you.”

So, what do we do when life can bring us so much pain? Mother Theresa had it right, she said “Love them anyways.” I believe that. I believe the love you hold does not turn into hate, we just have clutter to remove, and the love is still there. It may be stifled and squashed, deeply hidden under the mental and emotional gunk, yet it is there.

So how do we remove the clutter, you ask? We do it through honest exploration of our feelings, open communication, forgiveness, and finally acceptance. We look for the lessons, and even the blessings. We learn to let go and not hold onto things that cause us hurt, or pain. We learn to focus on what is good, instead of what is bad. We realize we all here to experience what life brings us and that we are in this together. We learn that what we are feeling, is spreading out into the collective consciousness and only we have the power to choose what energy we share with the world. We learn to choose love, no matter what.

My challenge for you is to take a moment and look deep inside your heart and see if any clutter may need some attention and loving care. 

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Healing the Mother / Daughter Relationship

Healing the Mother / Daughter Relationship

There are so many lessons learned in life and many originate with our family. I often say they are our greatest teachers. Some say we choose our family before we come to this Earth and that we also have a say in our lessons. I must have been one eager student! 

One of the biggest lessons in my life has been to live through the death of my Mother, loosing her to suicide at 15 years of age. That is when she passed, although there are numerous times beforehand that I or we as a family had felt abandoned by her. From what I have heard and what I vaguely recall of that time, was Mom was a point in life where she felt unsupported, and after raising four children and having a husband who often was away on business trips, was someone in desperate search of finding herself.

Suffering from what we now know as postpartum depression, she was treated for mental illness and diagnosed as border line Schizophrenic. She was given all kinds of medications and had to experience brutalizing electric shock therapy. She was a lost soul. I remember sneaking out of the house once, taking the bus across the city and visiting her while hospitalized. The echo of her words stung me to the core; “I have nothing to live for, not even you children.”

Oh, I was confused, hurt, and very angry! How could a Mother say that to a child? I called my Dad to come pick me up, and he was furious that I went there, likely wanting to protect me from pain or sadness yet something in me also searched for the truth. Eventually one gets tired of hearing that you are too young to understand.

So much of my life has been about healing this relationship, and healing myself. Even though I made a conscious choice to never be like her, never get married, never have children, never be creative and vibrant (as she was pre-illness,) what I did was rob myself from many of the greatest pleasures of life. You see, my deepest fear was becoming like my Mother.

Fear. That’s a big one. It prevents us from living and can prevent us from loving. Life has a way of teaching us what we came here to learn regardless of the choices we make. Loosing a parent is challenging under any circumstance. The emotional baggage we carry can become immense. It can take over our lives and make itself present in each and every decision we make. It can steer our career choice, our relationships, and we begin to naturally protect ourselves and others from having to feel this kind of pain.

Letting go of that emotional clutter that I carried, that immense shame, disgust, hate, fear, grief, loss, and abandonment came through years of work and self exploration. Knowledge is empowering, as is acceptance. Perhaps the most healing of all was forgiving. Much has been written about the power of forgiving, not that we have to accept or condone the behaviour of others, but that we detach from the emotional connection to that part of our story.

I can now say that I am at peace and have gained much more compassion for myself and others. I have learned to step back and encourage people to feel their emotional pain and process their own lessons. I learned I cannot heal anyone, they have to heal themselves and their relationships.

What I can do is ‘hold space’ for you as you heal. I can listen, I can empathize and share from my personal learning and training. I can say it’s worth your time to heal the past so you can live in the present and look forward to a future lived in peace and harmony. It may not be your relationship with your Mother that requires healing, it could be anyone, including your relationship with God/ Spirit and self. Soul Coaching® can assist in clearing emotional clutter by;

  • Connecting with the Spirit of Water, feel the flow, life force and rejuvenating properties
  • Exploring the turning points in your life
  • Looking at recurring emotions
  • Explore the meaning we give to events in our life and get to the source of that meaning
  • Using creative projects to heal / change our personal history
  • Identifying what brings our energy up and or down
  • Letting go of Victim thinking and choose our life
  • Learning to ask questions in a way we get better answers
  • Examining how we relate with the word and what our relations patterns are especially in our significant relationships
  • We learn to be, watch for signs, and be grateful for all there is and most importantly we remember to love ourselves and others

To change our world, we need to start with ourself. Doing these exercises in the Soul Coaching program can help you step out of old thoughts and patterns and understand that every experience in our past has been an essential part of our spiritual journey. You are not alone, even if it may feel like it. We are all in this journey together, learning, loving and sharing. 

Blessings galore,

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ForGIFTness; One of the Greatest Gifts of All

ForGIFTness; One of the Greatest Gifts of All

Forgiveness comes in many packages but always from the Heart.  ~  Image by Kelly Chamchuk

Today I woke up with a long ‘to do’ list and at the top of that list was forgiveness. ForGIFTness. That was the word that came to mind. Because the other thing on my mind recently has been family photos after seeing so many beautiful photos pop up on Facebook posted by Friends; photos of them as young child with Santa, photos of them in their teens, in ‘Throwback Thursday” and so many beauty-filled images of families together or loved ones past that they are choosing to honor during this special Holiday Season and Christmas Time.

The top of my ForGIFT list is my youngest brother who shortly after my Fathers passing decided to destroy all the families photos my Dad had so neatly categorized for each of us and stored in his lower dresser drawer knowing this day would come. My outrage was not only for him intentionally destroying this lifetime of family history but also because I saw the packages there the day prior and decided to wait till tomorrow to gather them up and hold them as precious. Something was screaming at me to do so, my intuition, my soul; yet I choose not to listen because of the duties of the day and the rest of the clutter clearing I was involved in to prepare the home to be sold. Timing was everything and I learned that ‘lesson’ that hard way as I do most things in this lifetime.

Imagine my surprise coming back the next day and seeing the drawer completely empty and when asking my youngest brother where the photos were, hearing the simple emotionless reply “Gone.” I had no choice but to remain super calm even though my rage was burning through me like a wild woman; “Gone where?” I questioned hoping they were only relocated to another area but fearing the worst as his behavior at the time was erratic and unpredictable at best.  I still cannot recall his exact words but they were either ‘burned’ or ‘taken to the dump’ or both. I do recall it being an act driven from Anger and recall thinking how much he must hate what this represents; family, childhood, self, us, for him to not only destroy his package but all of ours too.

One of the greatest and most powerful healing tools ever is FORGIVENESS; what I am now calling ‘ForGIFTness.’ It is truly the greatest gift you can give yourself. It brings peace where there was once rage, calm where there was once chaos and where there was once hate, you can replace it with another great healer – Love.

What I usually do is get outside of myself and use empathy, compassion and understanding for the other person and try to see where they were coming from. What was he feeling that made him do such a harsh act? How angry and deeply grieving was he to lash out in this particularly symbolic way? Was he in total shock or had he snapped in to some Psychotic state? My love for my brother overshadowed all else and even though I felt so much anger, what won was the love. Yes, I was extremely angry, actually in a state of rage, but I saw a fear in him that was way bigger than us both and choose in that moment to let it go. I forgave him.

Yet something did stay with me all these years… I miss those photos terribly. I yearn for them. I want to look at those images. I want to see myself as a child and see my family when we were together and young and happy.  And I cannot. I noticed that although I am no longer holding any blame towards my brother I am however holding blame towards my self.

Today what I need to let go of is that I didn’t trust myself enough to grab those images in time. I did not listen to my self and my guidance.  Today my forGIFTness is aimed towards me. I choose to believe that I managed the best I could at that most challenging time under very stressful circumstances.  I was reminded of so much in that moment; you cannot control others, hold near what is precious to you, don’t put off till tomorrow what you can do today, love trumps anger, things are just things, and it is okay to let go.

So, how do you forgive? Great question asked by many and here are some things you can do for any people you are gifting this to including your SELF.

  • Realize that your hate or anger does not affect the other person; it only affects you and may even manifest itself in physical symptoms and likely will affect your life, your relationships, even your career and all you do. Anger and revenge are like poison in our systems.
  • Notice if you are the type of person who seeks revenge. Revenge is all about getting even. Find your peace in that there is no ‘even’ and that life is not always fair; lessons come to us for us to learn from them. Acting out towards another is again only harming yourself. Choose to be happy instead, choose peace instead.
  • Make a list of what you did learn, or what good came from it, however painful the incident or event was, there is a ‘positive spin’ you can put on it. Bottom line, you are here and alive and even if there is much work yet to be done, that’s a great start. You are precious. Be gentle on yourself and give yourself all the time you need for healing to occur.
  • Allow yourself the time to completely embrace all of the emotions you are feeling, even the ones we refer to as negative; they are just emotions and they are yours so therefore they are valid and should be honored. Once you allow them to bubble up, you can release them and be free of them. You do not have to agree with or condone hurtful acts, just feel how they affect(ed) you, feel the places in your body where you hold the emotions and let them go, then send in some soothing white light and sparkles to fill the space.
  • Send warm blessings to all involved so they too can experience peace, calm and forgiveness. All of this can be done ‘privately’ – there is no need to involve the other person(s) in your forgiveness unless you feel you want to and it is safe for you to do so. This is an exercise in grace purely for you.
  • If you are a person who seeks forgiveness from others for something you may have done or caused, all you can do is ask. Be genuine in your request and speak from your heart focusing on your concern of what harm may have been caused to the other person(s) involved. You may not always receive forgiveness when you ask for it as others too need their time to heal but you CAN forgive yourself and become a wiser more loving person at any given time.

Who is on your ‘ForGIFT’ list this year? Give them and your Self the best gift ever. The gift of Forgiveness, one of the greatest gifts of all.

In luminescence and Love,

 

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