Me in the forest in Big Sur with a sprig of Wood Sorrel.
Last month I turned 35. I celebrated the fifth seven-year cycle of my life and felt proud of the work I’ve done in the name of consciousness—for the last seven years in particular. Every year I try to take stock of how I’ve moved through life. I encourage this in my clients as well: yearly, with the moon, anniversaries, any cycle that feels relevant. What changed? What did I create? Where did I get stuck? Where did I get free?
In turning 35, I reflected on my 20s—what now feels like an entire other lifetime. Such a different era, yet it was leading me to exactly where I need to be, which is here and now. As I wrote in my previous post about perfection in chaos, there was a time when I was in a perpetual state of regret about the past. I believed that my lack of perfection was the reason for my present suffering. Last month, I realized the other bind this pattern of thinking puts us in: If you never trust how you showed up to life in the past, and you believe that it defines your present experience, you’ll always feel doomed. Moonlight Elecampagne and Honeysuckle flower essences were part of this revelation for me. And as for creating what you want, well, that’s pretty tricky if you’re only focusing on the past and the perceived scarcities of your life. Honoring your past self is essential for intentional creation in the present.
Identification with the past and the non-self, the perceived lack of perfection—I experience this and see it all around me. So the first step for me, and for my clients, is to get to a place of acceptance. Crab Apple, Fawn Lily, Impatiens, Pine and Sage are other acceptance essences that come to mind. Just be ok with what was and is. While it is not a state I permanently occupy, I have gotten so much better at accepting what is: how I’ve lived, who I’ve loved, work, interpersonal relationships, my family, the Earth’s destruction, politics, etc. There is a flood of peace that comes when you reach a point and trust that everything was perfect, everything is perfect, and everything will be perfect. It’s healing backwards and forwards and in all lifetimes. Remember: This process is non-linear.
Once you clear these attachments and understand that you get to create whatever you want, that’s when it becomes possible to consciously create. To manifest, the timing must be right, of course. If you’re in survival mode, or in the midst of a painful teaching, it may be a time that’s about stabilization rather than creation. Manifesting has become a hot topic recently, and it’s something I studied with a few teachers, most notably Jane Bell, for several years. And what I now know is that the last seven years of my life—all these prolonged periods of intense self-work—were necessary to reach a place of significant conscious creation, where I am co-creating my life in flow, as opposed to against it, or unconsciously.
Everyone’s process is different. But everyone has to do the work of clearing the old attachments in order to reach a place where conscious creation is possible. Otherwise, you’re creating around your wounding, or from your ego. There is a big difference between creating for your ego, and creating for your soul. Creating out of fear versus creating out of love.
A few months ago my partner and I moved to the suburbs, a small town north of the city. (I am blessed to have found my beloved, and this opens up another facet of creation, to be discussed in another future post.) We love it here. We have many conversations around the life we are creating and want to create for ourselves. One aspect is that we don’t plan to have kids. The most frequent reaction to our relocation is: “But why would you move to the suburbs if you don’t want kids?" The response really illuminates how just a small swim upstream (the decision to not be parents to humans) really throws people off.
As a heterosexual cis-female in America I feel the pressures of society and my family to follow the status quo: have children and stay at home. Even in a progressive place like New York, I feel this tension and confusion regarding my decision. So what if you want to create something different than the norm? Wanting to create your own unique way of life, path, job, art—whatever—can bring up a lot of fears and doubts. Many of them projected. And, usually, depending on the functioning of your family, if it’s not validating your parents’ wishes, paving your own way can be problematic. Luckily, all opposition provides the perfect opportunity to create with the wild unknowns.
Consciously creating with unknowns is a bit like walking a tightrope without a net. It feels like you could fall and really hurt yourself. But, as my wise Aunt Virginia told me once, “Creating with the unknown allows you to access so much more because you’re getting to work with what you don’t know, not just with what you do know.” If you’re playing in the field of rules, entrenched beliefs, what you “should be doing,” etc, that’s so much more limiting than playing with the energetics of something undefined, free from assumptions or expectations. It’s a whole lot more spacious, and it’s infinitely more liberating. Playing in the unknown = more possibilities.
What if you don’t know what you want? That’s totally fine. There will be times where that’s the case. Again, we must remember this rule of the Universe: You get to create whatever you want. Yes, some of us have limitations (again, it’s usually perceptual), but we all have the choice. We always have a choice. Now, most people are making unconscious choices and that is our overarching societal model for how it’s done. But once you wake up to this reality, you get to be in the flow of a new order.
In this time of social, political, and environmental upheaval the cholce and ability to create consciously has huge implications not just for each of us personally, but also for the collective. If we merely reject what is “wrong” in the world, or what we don’t want, without embracing our own shadows—a connective fiber in us all—we only reinforce the chaos. Clearing what is not us—what is fear—allows us to choose from our hearts, and bring in our own unique light, which is essential for balancing the darkness of our time.