The time for the solitary circle, the circle of one, to end. I've known for a very long time, but finding the right circle, the right group, has seemed like too much work. I've stepped into circle, attempted to create my own circles. Now, a circle is in front of me. Do I step in or do I watch from the periphery?
The first circle I attended was in 1997. I had prayed feverishly for 3 things that year. I didn't "goal set", which I do now. There was no vision board (you better believe that visioning is now a huge part of my life). But, there was certainly a singular focus and an understanding that year that if I did not do "something" that my life would NEVER be what it could be, what it was supposed to be.
So, I prayed and thought and visualized in my head for:
1. The love of my life
2. A great job to pull me out of the bonds of retail management
3. A connection to the Divine so real and powerful and would meet me spiritually in the deep primordial way that I so longed for.
Within 6 weeks in late summer/early fall of 1997, they all came to be. My BFF was part of a women's circle and I was invited to come to a weekend with a Shaman from New Zealand, which changed my life and opened a door to something that (this is my ego talking), most people can only dream of - not because they cannot experience it - but because they won't.
Those other two things. Yes, they happened as well. After meeting the Grandfather from NZ, I received a call from an old acquaintance that offered me a fantastic day job in property management AND I met the man I now call "husband". 1997 was a good year.
From that time until 2001, I stood in a circle, twice a week plus equinoxes and solstices with a group of men and women that worked together in earnest and in pursuit of the higher teachings that truly have been mysteries for thousands of years. This was a magical time of my life - in both real and esoteric terms.
But, somewhere along the way, I shifted. I know when it happened. It came with pregnancy. No longer the maiden - stepping into the power of the mother - my eyes adjusted and my place as equal and as a carrier of a different knowledge grew, which made the facilitator of our circle not very happy. Truthfully, it was time. Spirit knew it was time. Discord grew among the circle and unhappiness with the ego of our dear friend who had been our homebase, our "leader" in a way for so long. In 2001, I left that group, not entirely knowing why, but knowing it was the right thing to do.
Over the next couple of years, I stepped in and out of other circles, trying to find a new spiritual home. It never happened. Maybe my fear of being hurt, my knowledge that I needed to focus on motherhood, I don't know. In 2016, I wrote a letter to her, my friend, my mentor, who taught me so much. The letter told her how grateful I was, I thanked her for opening her home and her life and sharing and teaching. A shift happened, as they do when you release.
In 2016, I went to a full moon retreat. I had been leading a small circle off and on at my home for a year or so, when women were interested in coming, but truthfully, this isn't my calling. Am I a teacher? Yes. Coach one and one? Yep. Hold the energy. Yes. Serve as mentor. Of course. But, lead the group in that way. I'll leave it to others. At the retreat, I wasn't going to learn or to even be among sisters. I went to get away, to see if I could reconnect with that part of myself and to see if I could stomach being in a group in this way again.
It was a beautiful weekend and I recharged myself in the way I needed. Now, here we are a year and a half later. My friend, the leader of the retreat, has formed a new sisterhood. A circle of women. I've watched this unfold the last few months as she has geared up to launch this new endeavor. The last few months have found me in great silence and listening for the calls of my soul as I heal from grief and embrace this middle life I have entered. I am listening to Spirit as she guides me forward. My business has changed. My direction has shifted slightly. And, she has told me that I need to be in a circle. No longer a solitary practitioner of her arts.
So, I signed up. It did it. Once in March, once in April. No anxieties. No second guessing. Just the call and answer.
I've written this post 100 times in my head. Maybe more. Bringing myself to sit down and write it...well...that's been another story. But, I'm a storyteller, so I'll give it a shot. I am not embarassed to say, I'm weeping - again - as I type this morning from one of my favorite places in Nashville (another story for another day).
This story, it's a story of walking down a road and finding that divergence and stopping as in life I always want both paths, never wanting to go right or left. It's a story of profound grief that just doesn't seem to end, but now that the worst of winter is behind us and we are once again seeing the rays of the sun, it doesn't grip me as it did during the last few weeks of overcast skies and rainy days.
I began my business in the fall of 2015 and my direction was to become THE digital storyteller for the modern day mystic. Something inside of me, however, could not let go of the idea of continuing to offer space healing and move myself into the path of the mystical teacher. I don't know if it was ego or really just finding completion to a path once started that I needed to explore to be able to close that door. As is usual with me, it was most likely a little of both.
2016 moved along and I did okay...but didn't see the traction I wanted and in January of 2017, was given the guidance through intuition, lots of prayer and manifestation work that I really needed to focus on coaching both in business and for clients in their personal lives. In other words, keep on the original path and finally let go of my feng shui, organizing, space clearing. They are amazing tools and I am so grateful. In fact, they allow me to have additional tools when working with my business clients as all of that amazing training gives me a unique lens in which to view my work.
Then, calamity strikes. When my father became "ill" - I use that term loosely as illness was thrust upon him by his doctors, my work became a constant push pull of keeping my head above water to not lose my clients, while working with my sisters to care for this King among men. After his passing, there were decisions to be made, attorneys, childhood memories packed away in boxes and displayed on shelves to be dealt with.
I tried in earnest to blog and to get back on the horse of FB Live and my You Tube videos. A brave face was made for Instagram posts that decreased dramatically. Over the months after his death, my silence grew until January when I looked at my beloved husband and whispered, "I've lost my voice."
It was as if the dam broke and over the last few weeks I have come to a place of peace with the silence and instead of wanting to run from it, but have sat and listened to it and to myself and to that intuition that was blocked the last few months as I wallowed in my pain and anger.
Emerging like the daffodils that dot Nashville's landscape, I am shaking off the cold and finding my way to the sun.
From the silence has arisen a vision. As I worked on my vision for 2018, I took a hard look at what the bulk of my 2017 business held. Who called me? What services did they want? What items were they willing to pay for? Though I had odds and end calls for space healing, it was my ability to tell stories, bring their visions to life digitally and in print, organize their business tools like email and calendars, that made them pick up the phone.
So, here I am. Embracing what my biggest cheerleader, my husband, has been telling me for 3 years (not in an "I told you so" kind of way"). Consulting, coaching, visioning. This is me. This is what I do. Serving my clients in this way to bring their vision to life to allow them to bring their visionary services to the world. I am the digital storyteller for the modern day mystic. I am a business coach to the awakened human.
A good blogger would probably leave you with a cute image of herself. You can check out my Instagram for that! I'm leaving you with the most inspirational song of 2017 that plays in our home nearly every day. This Is Me!
When I began my spiritual journey around 1997, I heard for the first time about "finding your purpose." I was ON IT. Within the spiritual group I circled with, we took every personality test available, meditated, visualized...I lit candles and prayed and just KNEW my purpose was close at hand. For maybe....four years...I followed this thinking. Then, I was married and had The Sun and for that time, my purpose was motherhood. When my little guy was around 3 or 4 I did find something, finally, that made sense to me. Feng Shui. And, went to a 7 day feng shui intensive in Indiana. The path to simplifying was already in front of me, I embraced feng shui, was interested in organizing and then just sort of turned my back on it. We were diving into our adoption and I just could not be bothered with my purpose.
As I have gotten older, my "purpose" has shifted from time to time, but each time I came back to some things that I know and am passionate about. Space healing. It's a part of me, part of my purpose. But, is it all?
1997 was a loooooong time ago and as I have grown and matured I have realized that we can have more than one purpose. We can be passionate about something and share it with others, but we can expand and grow and have more than one thing that BRINGS PURPOSE to our lives. Space healing still gives me purpose. I am PASSIONATE about it and share it and teach it and make a living from it. But, I have moved the last few years into healing digital spaces with website development for my heart-centered clients. The healers and shaman and visionaries of the world. I am also PASSIONATE about these things. And, added to this is goal setting and winning in life and visioning the lives we want to carve out for ourselves - giving us purpose.
I've always know I couldn't go through life aimlessly. Not that I haven't wandered. Lord knows I have wandered and been aimless and confused. But, I have also been on purpose, living in purpose.
The key is not to find that ONE PURPOSE, but to LIVE always ON PURPOSE.
And, your purpose does NOT have to be earth shattering. It can be to be the best darn mom in the world. It can be to be to be the most supportive friend. It can be to be the best employee. If it is what you choose each day as you live ON PURPOSE, then it is good.
Each day when you get up, ask for a miracle, ask to be a reflection of the Divine for yourself and others, ask that you live on purpose. And, maybe, just maybe, how you respond to life will shift. Your focus will be laser sharp. Your goals will be met. And, you will be a magnet for good. It's not always great or perfect, but the alternative is not one I want to consider. Live on purpose today!
Do you ever do something that you know will be great but you didn't know how great or how much you needed it? That's me at the Home for the Soul conference with graduates of Denise Linn's programs including her Feng Shui courses, Soul Coaching (my next course), Elemental Space Clearing....Tonight, I sit in my hotel with my hubby who flew down to meet me. We had a fantastic dinner where we stuffed ourselves then were forced to walk for blocks to allow our food to digest. Now, we sit in our hotel room with dueling laptops,both working in peace and quiet. Next to me is my altar that I have been adding to all day as I unwrapped items from my conference swag bag. My big take away today was finally getting the ultimate oracle card spread that resonates with me after 20+ years of wondering why I cannot read cards! I am so grateful for these gifts, these teachings and this time.
Normally when I travel alone, especially on a quest (which isn't very often if you know me), I take an altar. Have altar will travel is my motto. I did this in '05 when I traveled for my Feng Shui training and last year when I went away to a 3 day full moon feminine retreat. When we travel as a family, I don't typically travel with an altar (don't ask me why). I decided on this trip to not take an altar as I knew I would be picking up some items along the way, and I did.
The last couple of years I have seen lots of folks publicly declare their gratitudes during the month of November, the month of gratitude and today is day two. I am grateful for the sacred items I picked up today, such as this Archangel Michael that will be placed above our front door for protection and these lovely candle holders with Nag Champa candles to bring a beautiful scent to our home.
I have them in my hotel room on my Sage Woman magazine and a reminder of the feminine spirit that lives within me. These are not all that I am grateful for today. I am grateful for this time to myself, for being able to veg out in front of bad TV, for the wonderful Sisters I met tonight that are also here for my conference and for the bread we broke together over dinner as we got to know one another. For all of this and more, I give thanks.
Greetings from beautiful St. Augustine! Months ago, students of Denise Linn's teachings were invited to a conference titled "A Home for Your Soul". I knew I had to attend, but life was busy, my father was ill, my business was growing, I couldn't commit. After my father passed in August, I knew I had to attend, but instead of all of the "buts", I chose to sign up. I knew that this conference would feed my soul, allow me to deepen my knowledge, help me to grieve and allow me space to heal. Tonight, I headed to dinner and was nourished by salmon and asparagus, cooked by someone else's hands. Tonight, I lay in a bed made by someone else. Today, my gratitude is enormous in this month of Thanksgiving for everyone who is supporting my family so that I can take this journey. Now, if the drunk folks in the alley will go to bed, it will be perfect! #followyourbliss #ahomeforyoursoul #iamgrateful
It began in late March. My father walked into the hospital for what was promised to be a simple procedure, which later took his life. It was 4.5 months of watching him waste away, unable to recover as his 80 year old body fought for life. It was late into the night of August 13, around 11pm, that my sister called. "We are headed to the ER. Don't come. I'll let you know." At 2am the next call came. "Come now." The news was grim. 48 hours. Maybe a little more. Maybe a little less. Then, we took him home, my 2 sisters and I. For the next two and half days, the three of us, and my eldest niece, cared for him around the clock. We were joined by hospice, which was a tremendous help.
Death is so interesting and horrible and beautiful and I wish that each person would have, if they desire, the ability to pass away at home, surrounded by the things and the people they love and who love them. Both of my parents had this experience. We, those they left behind, were blessed by being able to support their transition in this way.
Honestly, there are moments when that time, those moments etched in my mind, are unreal. A bad dream. How could he be gone? So fast. Too soon. Is 80 years too soon? A Leo who lived a BIG LIFE. I mean BIG. The stories, his accomplishments. I could write a book about this man. He was the stuff of legends. Honestly, I have always thought that and then my mother-in-law, hearing some of the stories said it as well.
There is a part of me that thinks, "does everyone feel like this, take death so hard?" Actually, I am doing better with my father's death than I did with my mom's. As I have wept in the quiet, still moments of my day the last two weeks (which I can tell you has not been enough), I have considered this grief and how each of my parent's deaths was different. My mother lived a very blessed (after meeting my father and beginning her family) yet very horrible life. Her childhood was filled with abuse of various kinds, followed by men who mistreated her (not my father, the ones that came before), alcoholism and who knows what else that I have not been privy to. When she passed I grieved for her life, the pain, who she was and who she could have been had she been able to move beyond her suffering. I grieved the relationship that we never truly had, though I believe we both longed for.
With my father, this grief is different. It is a hole. A man who championed his children, always stood behind us, taught us everything. A hero to the grandchildren and friend to all he met. The son of a sharecropper, with an 8th grade education, he went on to run the entire manufacturing arm of the 3rd largest die-casting company in the United States. He traveled and met CEO's in the US and Europe working out contracts and specs on car parts and more. No small feat in a global economy for man who quit school to work in the fields so that there was food on the table! And avid reader, armchair political commentator, gardener and amateur engineer, there was nothing he could not do.
Growing up, we had our share of problems. Alcoholism with my mom, issues with my siblings, we had it all. We also had big Sunday dinners where friends and family would gather to swim in our pool, great family vacations, family businesses that brought us together in the best and worst ways possible. We are a close family and there are times that I marvel in our relationships and ability to get along and give thanks for the emphasis put on family that we had.
At this point I know I am beginning to become close to rambling, please forgive me. My husband's grandparents, in their late 80's, blessed us with joining us for the funeral and then lunch at my parent's home. Mammaw hugged me and told me that it will get better but that I will always hurt. This from a woman who loved her daddy more than life and lost him probably 25 or 30 years ago. It will get easier, but it will always hurt. There will be a day when I don't cry in the stillness of the day, when that hole will not burn through my chest. I know there will be a day when I will have stillness then remember and recognize that it has gotten easier.
This grief is layered with not just my loss or the loss of a grandparent for my children or the loss of a brother for those siblings my dad left behind. There is another grief that I am sure sits in my heart around my daughter. I cannot talk about it now as it deserves it's own place, but I will write about it later.
I'll leave you with my fave pic of my dad in the last few years. He is with Noah at his 8th grade graduation in 2016. I am so glad my children had the chance to know him.
Thank you everyone who has been understanding during this time.
"After all, to the well-organized mind, death is but the next great adventure." - Albus Dumbledore in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone.
I’m Dana Croy and I am a modern day mama. Balancing family and work is not always easy (not to mention a little self-care). Though being Mama to two fantastic kiddos is a huge part of my life, that was not always the case. I wear many other hats and invite to sit down and find harmony with me.