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Archive for the ‘Transformation’ Category

Today, the day after the Winter Solstice, the sun will be around a tiny bit longer than yesterday.

Today, my seeds of intention are one day new.

Am I any different today than I was yesterday?

Are you?

Yesterday the skies were thickly overcast all day long. This did not bode well for my sunset Solstice ritual at the beach. Still, I was determined to go and I did.

It was blustery at La Jolla Shores in San Diego. The first thing I noticed was how I’d miscalculated. In my town, Santa Cruz, the beaches face south, so we get to see the sun set in the water there. Here, in San Diego, the beaches face west. The sun looked like it might peek out from under the clouds before it hit the water, but it was going to be on the other side of the point.

I reminded myself, play with what is and be willing to be surprised. So I began my walk northward. I called in the elements.  I called in four Arcangels and I asked them to co-create with me. As I invited the angels, I came upon a white feather. This has always been a sign to me that I am not alone.

I picked up four rocks and infused each one, in turn, with what my body, mind, spirit and heart wanted to release. Then, I tossed the rocks, one by one, toward the sea to be reclaimed by the elements. With each toss, I declared my new intentions. I planted the seeds of new energy, new emotion, new thought, new form. Well, maybe they are not so new, but now they will have room to grow. Let’s say, I did some weeding.

All along I was humming whatever came to me; improvising something without words, something new yet deeply familiar, something from my soul. After I tossed the final rock, I turned and headed south. The humming grew more courageous.

There was a tug at my heart as I recalled my youthful summers at this same beach. I chose to remain present and brought myself back by taking in the richness of the cool salt air.

Breathe, simply breathe.

thin layer of sunlight

Feeling disappointed (c) K J Loh

The sky grew grayer and there was a slim line of golden sky at the southern horizon. I tried not to be disappointed. I considered driving to the point in hopes of seeing the sun, but decided I wanted to remain connected to the ritual rather than attached to my original vision of watching the sun set in the water.

I was sitting in my car writing in my journal when I glanced up and saw the most amazing red sky. I gasped. Then I grabbed my camera and walked back down to the water’s edge. People dotted the sand and stood spell bound. Some, like me, took photos. The sky was afire. It was one of the most spectacular sunsets I’ve ever witnessed.

blazing sunset La Jolla Shores

Surprise Surprise (c) K J Loh

Had I been attached to my original vision, I could have been sitting at a traffic signal, fighting commuter traffic to get to the point and missed it all.

(I just noticed what I wrote – “fighting…get to the point…miss it all.” A lovely double-entendre reminder to take the scenic route, to dawdle and enjoy the journey)

Hey beautiful mischievous angels, thanks for the surprise!

Fire, you really strutted your stuff!

In the night, a gentle rain fell washing away the dust in this dry town.

Today a huge wind is up; for many, just an observation of the weather and a potential inconvenience.

For me, it’s an affirmation from the elements I invited to play with me.

If it’s all made up anyway, why not have fun?

So again, am I different today? Has anything changed?

I planted the seed.

I weeded the weeds.

Already today, I’ve had the opportunity to choose not to hold the old way and to invite and embrace the new.

Sometimes form (earth) takes awhile to catch up with energy, thought and emotion.

What appears to be a so-so ho-hum shift just might turn into something really amazing.

We’ll see what unfolds in the months to come.

Meanwhile, I trust.

And I remain willing (and not so secretly eager) to be surprised.

Copyright (c) December 2009, Kathy J Loh, All Rights Reserved

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Today, my love for mystery is bumping up against my archetypal victim.

Phooey on evolution and new ways of thinking and being.

Phooey on dreams and visions that require me to be more vulnerable.

Phooey on cleaning up, empowered relationships, and mastery.

And double phooey on social media upkeep.

The only thing that soothes me is the comfort of nature. That, and food; gooey sticky tummy-filling comfort food. Oh,  music too.  If I think about it, I’m speaking “womb;”  surrounded by good energy, well held and well fed while listening to the rhythm of the heart and singing of  blood as it’s pumped through the veins.

I’m floating in the void; at one and the same time comfortable and extremely frustrated.

When I am in this in-between space and in the grip of “victim,” I find myself waiting to be rescued. I’m hoping that the next email, the next phone call, the next mail delivery will bring me a pleasant surprise. I’m hoping that this next trip into town will yield a chance encounter that turns golden. Sometimes, it does. I will get an email inquiry from a potential client, checks in the mail or make a new connection. But most days it’s just bills and junk mail and a bag of groceries in the back of the car.

Where is my knight in shining armor?

Where is Publisher’s Clearinghouse with my million-dollar check?

Waiting to be rescued is a sign that I don’t want to take responsibility for my life, my visions, my happiness. Responsibility feels punishing; like really hard work with high odds of failure. Well, at least that’s how my victim sees it.

I’m rattled by the mess that the fallen oak tree left. No one is stacking firewood. No one is cleaning up the limbs that are dangling from the trees that were slammed by oak on its way down. No one cares about the huge pile of dead boughs. To top it off, the wind carried a big bright blue plastic bag into the center of the whole scene as if to garishly announce  “trash heap.”

These thoughts followed me out to the hiking trail.

The view from my window is not what it once was. It’s not what it will be. It is what it is. I don’t want to take responsibility for it and I want it to be a certain way.

My life is not what it once was. It’s not what I imagine it will be. It is what it is. I don’t want to take responsibility for it, but I sure as heck want to control it.

Video still

Snake (Kathy Loh)

And that’s the moment in my rant that a snake and I came face to boot on the hiking trail. It was a striped racer, not a threat, and a great reminder of the process of transformation and rebirth.  When snake sheds its skin, its eyes cloud over. My eyes are clouded. I can’t see. I’m shedding my old skin. It doesn’t feel good.

In my old life, I did things the hard way. I suffered to earn reward, love, and worthiness. Responsibility was a burden. Discipline was like living in eternal boot camp. I was hard on myself. OK, I think I was actually darn cruel to myself at times.

Who I am becoming is self-nurturing, inspired by Love to walk the path of Beauty, a dancer in the Great Mystery, truly enchanted by life. To this evolving me, responsibility is the “ability to respond” and discipline is “being a disciple to.”

I want to remember  (re-member) what makes me happy and be a disciple to my passions. I want to be able to respond to the winds of change. I want to know and speak the language of the heart.

This experience of floating in the void, this bumping up against like the incoming and outgoing tides, that feels like I’m going nowhere, this shedding of skin and waiting for the new to dry; waiting…waiting….waiting…is full of tension.

This tension is pure creative energy.

I know I am in a deeply creative process and I’m itching for resolution.

I suspect that powerful re-solutions arise in their own time and are not especially responsive to control.

So, I set down control and I surrender to creative chaos.

I allow myself to be enchanted by the mystery of it all.

I am grateful to snake for the reminder that I am re-minding from brain to heart and that it is a process that knows its own timing.

So…

Phooey on control.

Phooey on making things hard.

Phooey on waiting to be rescued.

Uhm, except …

I’d still gladly accept that prize from Publishers Clearing House.

Copyright (c) November 2009, Kathy J Loh, all rights reserved

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My tarot card for the month of July (as pulled during my January Tarot Pilgrimage for the year) is Death. As scary as it first seems, the Death card is actually perfect for me right now. It is about endings; things that need to be completed and left behind.  Regarding this card, Pamela Eakins, PhD writes in Tarot of the Spirit, “…something in your life is dying. Some structure, pattern or form that you created, or with which you have been involved, is disintegrating or dissolving. This is necessary, of course, in order for new birth or transformation to occur.”

I’m paying attention to what’s dying and what is being born. What wants to leave me, even if I try to hold on? What’s coming to me? Pay attention and intention. Vision quest it.

I’m aware that the structures and routines I built that helped me survive these last few years are ready to be revisited and dismantled. The time of licking wounds and healing is ending and I am reorganizing my life to accommodate the work I want to do in this world. I’m visioning my next creative contribution.

This is a good time for purging my environment of items I no longer need.  I have a relatively travel-free month, the days are long and I have a deep desire to regain some  floorspace from the many boxes I’ve never unpacked.

DeathTarotCard

(Card from Tarot of the Spirit Deck by Pamela and Joyce Eakins.
Copyright (c) 1992 U.S. Games Systems, Inc. Used with permission.)

Yesterday, I dipped a toe into my past and waded through two boxes; boxes that have housed “file later” papers neatly organized into hastily labeled grocery bags, for about four years now. When I was in the process of divorce and I moved into two rooms in a friend’s house, I had little desire, not to mention space, to attend to filing. Yet, it seems, I had plenty of interest harvesting and preserving anything that might inspire, inform or come in handy in a future I could not forsee. It was precisely because I could not predict it and because I am a creative thinker that everything seemed somehow useful. Everything held potential.

Add to that, the things with which I could not yet part; letters, notes, items from my cat, Stella, that I had to leave behind (long story) and documents that one keeps that prove the mortgage was paid off and various financial obligations have been met. I kept these because I was the silently designated keeper of these things in my marriage. I also resisted filing because I was the administrative assistant designee as well and it all left a bad taste in my mouth. I rebelled and thus, created for myself one heck of a clean- up job.

Opening each box is like opening a carton from the back of the frig. I am not sure what might be in there or what I will experience when I open it.  Some of it hit me hard. Stella’s collar, for instance and realizing she is 18 years old now, if she’s even still alive. I don’t know, because I’ve been purposefully deprived of any information about her. I sat there holding that collar close to my heart, as if holding her, and I had a good cry.

No wonder I’ve avoided these boxes. They are full of good-byes; good-byes to people, pets, homes, loves and most poignantly, good-byes to various iterations of me. Carrying out this task to completion means sending papers to the recycle bin and the shredder; a final good-bye.  Only the choice bits will actually find a home in the filing cabinet.  I have a little more clarity than I once did around what I need for this next leg of the journey.

Yes, there are some hello’s as well, some amazing finds that I will write about another day. Today it’s about good-bye and honoring the courage that transformation requires.

I’ve been on a heroine’s journey ever since I decided to get divorced. I packed all my things (well, 50% of them by California law) and set sail in uncharted waters armed with a vision, faith, determination and no small number of allies. I got really, really lost along the way. I wandered all over.  I visited many interesting islands; Lucid Living, Leadership, Shamanism, Soul Retrieval, Reiki, Sound Healing, Yoga of the Voice, Medicine Wheel Ceremonies,  you name it. I was gone as much as I was home and when I was home, it felt temporary. I traveled in my VW Camper and lived in and out of boxes.

I got braces and I grew my hair out from 1 inch to 15 inches. I was experiencing a second adolescence, but it wasn’t about the fun stuff,  it was all awkwardness. I was grieving, crying nearly every night and I had the dark circles under my eyes to prove it. Just as things got better, my father died.

It all really hit home yesterday as I went through the boxes. I found an 8×10 photograph of my Reiki group in Bend OR with William Lee Rand. I looked and looked at the picture, but I could not find me. I wondered if I took the photo and didn’t get in it myself. Then, I saw her…the she that is and used to be me; front and center. I did not recognize myself with chin-length hair, bangs, sallow complexion and very crooked teeth. I still have a hard time believing it was me.

I recognize myself in pictures prior to those years and I recognize myself in pictures from the last two years..but in pictures from that time in between, no. Who is she? My heart is filled with such compassion for her. Those lost years, the un-recognizable years, are the goo stage of metamorphosis. I recognize the caterpillar and I recognize the butterfly (even that took some time), but the chrysalis years are a mystery to me.

Who are we when we don’t know who we are? In the chrysalis stage we are re-cognizing ourselves while being unrecognizable.  We have to become unknown to ourselves so that we can create ourselves anew.

So, I wasn’t lost, I was hibernating, disintegrating to reintegrate, transforming. All the ingredients that went into that re-integration give me the heart-vision of compassion with which to see my journey, every step of the way in every direction I look.

The me I could not recognize in the picture is probably the closest to my heart. She is the one who had the courage to continue onward. She is the one who held steadfast in faith and reached out to her friends for help. She is the one who doggedly and creatively grew her business on her own in the face of potential poverty. She is the one who developed a deep and abiding relationship with Nature and Source. I could give a rat’s behind what she looked like. Her heart is pure gold and she taught me surrender and self-acceptance.

She brought me to the shores of Grace and that’s something worth “dying” for.

Copyright(c) July 2009, Kathy J Loh, All Rights Reserved

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