It was 2 tumultuous months after my soon to be ‘wasband’ (he was my husband) had told me he wanted a divorce when one of my besties invited me on a trip to California to participate in an event called ‘The Bliss Project’. It was a weekend designed for women to connect with each other in a heartfelt way and learn about how live from their passion.
It was a gift to me from Rah and another beautiful friend Jennifer. One I couldn’t repay and only receive.
The trip was sunny, bright and warm. So many of the things Minneapolis didn’t offer that time in March, so many of the things I needed.
We roomed with the most amazing Russian woman, Sash. (she’s called Sash the Russian from now until the end of time). We connected and shared and experienced damn near bliss at the event. Everything the tall blonde said out of her mouth was immediate and true. We laughed in the mornings hopping out of the shower, sharing a blow dryer and we cried in the evenings after incredible insights. Deep, abiding friendships were formed in that Marriott hotel thanks to Lori Harder’s beautiful vision.
Go to an Awesome Connection Event and Meet other Awesome People.
On the final night I chatted with one of the speakers, Danette May. She had shared her story on stage and it resonated so much with me. When we spoke I shared about my passion for teaching girls how to love and protect themselves in the world.
“Oh, my. You need to be in touch with my friend Vishen”.
“You just need to go to A-Fest. Absolutely. I will let him know and you must be there”.
In my life I’ve had many people tell me I must be somewhere. Rarely, am I there. I’ve learned a few things in my 44 trips around the sun.
People will always tell me what THEY want me to do.
I always need to listen to what MY heart tells me to do.
My heart was on board. I couldn’t stop thinking about how passionate she was about me participating in this thing called A-fest. And I felt it too. I needed to be there. When I didn’t hear back from her after a week I sent her an email. It hadn’t left my mind for a minute.
I am sitting here with tears down my face as I watch these videos! You have something girl and I have no doubt you are meant to be at Afest–it will give you so many contacts and insights for upcoming retreats”!
I was accepted into the fold as a participant of A-fest, even better I was going to be there with my best friend Rah.
As further validation, (because we are always looking for some of it outside of ourselves right?), I was also selected to be a breakout session leader teaching the Art of Self-defense on the second day at the event.
It was happening in Croatia.I hadn’t been out of the country since I competed in the Pan Am Games in Brazil in 2012. There was a lot of upset in my life, my soon-to be-wasband didn’t want to be with me anymore. I was living in “our home” as a roommate in the guest bedroom. He was very adamant about “finishing up the divorce” and having me sign the papers so we could be done.
But I didn’t know that I wanted to be done yet.
I was sad, hurt, broke. And I charged $3000 to an Amex account to go to Croatia for A-fest. Because my heart said, “this is the right thing to do right now”. And I believed her. As right I could.
It helped so massively to have my best friend, Rah, tell me, “Let’s do it. Let’s go together”. And a lesson right here and now:
When you have someone in your life who can feel your heart’s calling and says “YES!, I’m there with you”. That is your person.
As I side track from the story which I might do from time to time, I want to implicate all relationships in this ‘Person’ category. We often think it must be a lover, or a husband/wife, or some other intimate relationship that equals ‘Our Person’. The truth is your person is always the person who will see you for you you are and love you unconditionally. No matter what.
Okay, we’re back at Croatia. But not quite yet.
I went into a serious study mode before the trip. I started reading books on everything expansive and growth related and I found this ONE book. Yes, I’ll call it the one book. It’s been a huge part of my healing and also part of the name of this chapter.
E-Squared. Nine Do-It-Yourself Energy Experiments That Prove Your Thoughts Create Your Reality by Pam Grout.
I began reading it about one week before the flight to Croatia.
This book is a small part of what I hope to offer you here in these posts. Exercises for healing trauma with stories on how it has been done. If you don’t believe you have the ability to heal your trauma I implore you to start here with this book.
When you do the experiments and realize the power of your thoughts, feelings, and actions to illicit a world at the discretion of your mind you will be able to move into powerful spaces of trauma release and an allowing for life to unfold at your touch.
The first experiment remains the most incredible of all for me. ‘The Dude Abides’ was the name of the chapter. It only asked that you declare the Universe provide you with an answer of it’s intelligent nature and connection with you by claiming a SIGN would come within 24 hours.
I had started the book without Rah, and 24 hours before our trip I declared to the Universe or God, or the Dude, or the Goddess or whatever you wish to call consciousness, that I needed a sign.
Me asking for a sign isn’t like Darwin asking for a sign. I’m not an atheist. In fact I’m often seeing signs in license plates and billboards, just running into an old friend or getting a random text message is a sign of something. I create miracles in everything I see. It’s kinda one of my favorite things about myself.
So this created a problem. The first experiment is to ask for a sign. And I’m someone who sees them everywhere.
It was gonna need to be pretty epic for the love of all that is universal.
I started the day looking at birds in the trees, singing for me, walking out of the house I’d called mine for so many years knowing it wouldn’t be my home much longer, running errands and finally coming back to the Divorce papers sitting on the counter.
They’d been there, staring at me everytime I walked into the kitchen for 2 weeks, and the wasband kept pestering me to sign them, and I know I was looking for a sign (the fact that both those words are the same could already throw me into a tizzy over it). Some small part of me hoped he would take it back. That we could work it out. So I’d left them there. And nothing changed. And now, I’d promised him I would sign those papers before I left for Croatia.
In 5 hours.
I stuffed them in my bag and headed to Surly Brewery to see my sister at her work. I knew an epic sign was coming.
I was greeted by my sisters huge smile and an ‘OMG!’ She was about to get off work and “coincidentally” my dad had dropped by as well as my other sister and my brother. I sidled up to a bench with almost my entire family surrounding me and started to cry.
Here it was. Here I was. A complete failure. I pulled the manilla folder with the papers out of my bag and wet the brown parchment with my tears.
“I screwed up. I said I would be with this person forever and look at this. We’re divorcing. He doesn’t love me.”
My dad, always stoic in times of struggle, except for those super hard ones, had tears in his eyes. This was one of those moments. He knew it. We all did. I didn’t want to sign the papers. It made me feel so unloveable to be holding these legal documents dissolving a lifelong commitment to someone who three months ago said “I just don’t love you anymore.”
It didn’t matter. In an instant, my family surrounded me echoing sentiments of unconditional love for me. Hand in hand with my family I pulled out a pen and signed my name on the dotted line.
It was done. And this was the sign of all signs.
Miracles are real and certainly my family unknowingly and independently showing up to the same spot at the same time so I could be witnessed in love in what I deemed my very greatest failure of all time was the most incredible of signs.
An hour later I dropped the Signed, signed (yes I will always call it this) papers back on the counter. I took one more, maybe hopeful, look at the kitchen counter and pulled my suitcase out the door with a solid close.
I was divorced and off to Croatia. But first, the Delta Sky lounge at the Minneapolis airport to meet up with Rah. I couldn’t even dream what Universe had waiting.
Romeo is just the kind of bartender you want to be serving you a glass of white wine after you sign your divorce papers. He was charming and funny and offered us a few lovely laughs. When he was taken away by other waiting customers, Rah and I were left with little between us than effervesce in a sparkling glasses.
She asked how I was doing.
We were about to enter into the trip of a lifetime and I was rocket-ing back and forth between sheer excitement and total despair. I’ll never forget when after a small sip she looked at me and said,
“So tell me more about this book and the experiments we’re gonna do”’.
It ratched me back into the present moment and away from the sadness of possible regrets. I began excitedly telling her about the first experiment ‘The Dude Abides’ and recounted how incredible it was to have my family present for the signing of all signs.
“That was it Rah. That was the sign. The Universe has given me undefeatable evidence it exists and is here, so we can read the next chapter on the plane and do the next experiment.”
Rah shared my excitement as we boarded the plane. We were both so ready for the grand adventure awaiting us we didn’t quite register when the flight attendant directed us towards the First Class side of the plane. After a moment of confusion and Rah explaining there must be a mistake we were assured we had been bumped to the first row of first class.
“This never happens on international flights. I’m used to it happening state side but never, never…”
I shushed her.
“The dude abides. It’s just a continuation, of course. OF COURSE!”
I’d never been in first class before. And I will never have an experience of that magnitude again. Full lounging seats you can turn into a bed. An immediate attendant asking if we’d like champagne or beer or both. A quilt to wrap up in when the overnight flight got long. A travel bag of goodies with toothpaste, toothbrush, eye cover, floss, and lotion. Socks. Seriously, SOCKS!!! I couldn’t get over it. After everything I’d experienced during the day this was the peak of it all. I was on the right path. Universe was with me and supporting me in the journey, first class and all.
Rah and I toasted our beautiful beginning and smiled knowingly to each other. The greatest finale to a first chapter in E-Squared.
This beautiful thing about being a miracle worker (which is to say someone who sees miracle everywhere), is the Universe can always one up you, in the most magnificent way.
Rah and I enjoyed filet mignon and I changed my mind entirely about what is possible with airplane food. Leave it to first class. We watched movies and had girl talk and finally fell asleep in our luxurious stretched out seats which turned into effortless beds. We rested our heads on pillows and wrapped up in down quilts knowing we would wake up in another part of the world, stretched out before us and a new chapter of E-Squared in our future, not to mention A-fest.
At my first sleepy roll over I landed on something hard. I turned over to move it, and my palm gripped around a bottle of champagne resting between our seats. There was a white cloth napkin wrapped around it with airplane wings pinned to hold it together with a small note.
This is exactly what it said.
‘The Dude Abides’.
I woke Rah up with a fast jerk and landed the deed on her right away until she responded with utter disbelief.
“What the hell? NO, that WASN’T me.” I knew she was telling the truth.
We stared at each other for a minute and left it there. I mean, not the champagne. We took it off the plane with us. But the miracle. The awe of it. We still don’t know who left it there and it doesn’t matter. Because it said everything we both needed to hear.
Yes. I’m on your side. I abide. And just maybe I’m not a dude either.