By Kathy Fisher
©2008 - most recent edit 10-30-08
Prologue: I have read many places that crisis, the "dark night of the soul," produces the greatest awakenings, that it is the quickest spiritual path to enlightenment. Hence, crisis is a gift of the highest order, even when it doesn't feel like it in the middle of the storm. I like to think of this as the "bounce" effect ... you need to hit bottom before you can bounce back to the heights and the farther you fall, the harder you hit, the higher you bounce.
(July 2008): Another way to see it is as an unfolding blossom. We like to watch the Saint John's Wort flowers pop open during the summer. The tiny red tips of the stamens begin to push through the center of the flower bud ... you can actually see them move as they push and prod the petals to unfold. Inside the expanding bud, you can imagine those hundreds of red-tipped stamens pushing toward the birth. It's a marvelous thing to witness!
(August 5, 2008): The most difficult
part of spiritual evolution/transformation for me is getting beyond the
conditioned knee-jerk ego reactions of 50+ years and learning to live
in a different way (when you change the way you look at things, the things
you look at change). This is particularly difficult when life throws me
an unexpected curve-ball (emerge-ancies). I'm getting there ... slowly
... at least now I can catch myself when those old habitual thoughts and
feelings creep into the picture ("the funk" I call it) and I
lose my faith and joy and start having doubts again. Then I go on a "rampage
of appreciation" (as Abraham says) and find things to be grateful
for in my life as it is in the now ... which usually lessens if not entirely
disperses "the funk."
Chapter One: The Awakening
Saturday, April 5, 2008 (this page was born): It started sometime in late winter, 2007. A huge rain and wind storm was blowing in. For some odd reason, storms started bothering me more than they used to. The fear and the anxiety and the dread. Where does that negative emotion come from ... and why? I used to like severe weather, I was impressed with the force of Nature (take that, you silly humans). But over the past few years, all I felt was terror.
So, I was standing in the front room window on this dreary winter day, watching the rain pour down in buckets, sideways. The familiar emotions were churning my stomach and drying my mouth. In a moment of panic, I prayed: "Jesus, you can calm the storm ... please, calm the storm!" A voice, clear and gentle came from within: "Whatever I can do, you can do and more ... this is what I taught you ... remember."
A wave of tingles flowed down my body. Oh, yea, I thought, so you did. I looked out at the storm and matter-of-factly asked it to subside. I asked the trees to be strong. I visualized a dome of safety around me and my house and my beloved forest. The rain momentarily let up, as if in response. The storm didn't stop, but it didn't frighten me any more and it didn't do any damage. We didn't even lose our power. Folks around us weren't so lucky ... huge floods to the south, trees down all over, power out everywhere ... it was a horrendous storm but it barely affected us. I thanked the forces of the weather for not harming us or the forest.
Every time there was a storm after that (we had many of them), I put up the "dome of protection" ... and every time, it worked. My husband (Gordy) joked about it at first until he realized that we were escaping major storms unscathed while nearby, trees came down and power went out. He stopped joking ... what if I really was controlling the weather? Somewhere deep inside, I knew it to be true ... and I was deeply grateful. I even asked it to snow on Christmas Day ... just a little, for effect ... and it snowed! Christmas snow NEVER happens here! Of course, I also asked for sun and warm and dry on Easter ... that didn't really happen ... but it wasn't too bad for such an early Easter (we got late spring snow a week later).
In the midst of my new connection with the weather forces (I talk with them every day), I was compelled to go to my personal library and read some things I hadn't opened in years. Each book seemed to help my understanding, but there weren't any really major "ah hah" moments.
Then, Gordy said one day that he'd really like to see the Eckhart Tolle tape that we got from the local library years ago (The Flowering of Human Consciousness). Eckhart's message had really touched him then and he needed it again. His job was literally driving him crazy; he hoped Eckhart could help him cope with the daily dose of turmoil. Of course, the library no longer had the VHS tape we had originally seen, so I ordered the DVD online and it arrived much faster than expected. We watched it immediately ... absolutely amazing ... and I knew I had to reread Eckhart's books. I started with a short one, Practicing the Power of Now ... it was OK, but no, that wasn't the one. So I went to The Power of Now ... and the "Ah HAH" moments came fast and furious! Suddenly everything made perfect sense, right down to the weather.
In the middle of reading Power of Now, I got another challenge. Gordy hadn't been feeling well (physically, emotionally, mentally) ... job stress probably, but just to make sure, he went for a physical. The doctor called ... a spot, a mass, something on the chest X-ray (yes, he's a smoker and his reliance on that crutch went up as the job stress went up) ... he needed to have a CT scan. Surprisingly, he was perfectly calm and he couldn't explain the peace he felt. I, on the other hand, went into my all-too-familiar anxiety-and-worry mode and immediately started living in the future. The scenarios that my mind was concocting were of the worst possible outcomes ... lung cancer ... 6 months to live ... where would I go, what would I do, how could I deal with this ... ohmygodohmygodohmygod.
It took every bit of strength I had and every bit of consciousness I could muster to stay in the present moment ... to stay out of a dreadful future I didn't want. And I slipped a lot.
Gordy made the scan appointment, but it still didn't show anything definitive ... he was referred to a pulmonary specialist and given a "prescription" for two weeks medical leave away from his stressful job (the best thing his doctor could have ever given him). We went to the specialist together ... they opted for a very expensive PET scan because they couldn't really see anything for sure in the X-ray and the CT scan. More tests, more waiting ....
During Gordy's two weeks off, we talked and talked and talked. We watched the Eckhart tape over and over. The tightly stressed lines in his face eased and his constant coughing (and too much smoking) stopped. We talked about the meaning of life ... we talked about death (he said he figured the reason he was so calm about the spot on the X-ray was because he was ready to "go home" or at least have a medical reason to get away from his job) ... we talked about Eckhart's teachings ... we talked about the lessons at our workplaces.
One Saturday evening, Gordy and I were standing outside looking at the stars and talking about life (like we have been a lot lately) ... and a huge, bright comet streaked clear across the sky, right where we were looking! Talk about a sign! Wow!! Earlier that day, when I drove down to the end of the road to get the mail, I had seen a huge double rainbow, right in front of Mt. Rainier. I came home so excited, jumping around like a little kid, that Gordy looked concerned and asked "Are you okay?" I broke out laughing: "No .... or maybe yes ... I've lost my mind ... and it feels wonderful!" So true!
Then we got the call from the pulmonary specialist after the PET scan ... perfectly normal ... no cancer, anywhere. Who knows where the mass went, but it's not there. Needless to say, I was overjoyed ... but not surprised. I had a dream shortly before waking that morning and I heard these words: "Perfectly normal." Exactly the same ones the doctor on the phone used!! We decided that the spot on the X-ray was simply the "fingerprint of God" saying "Wake up... it's time to wake up!"
Gordy still had some time off to enjoy ... and he did ... including reading some of the Eckhart book A New Earth and some others (he's not much of a reader, so that surprised me). We continued to talk, especially about how he could return to his job and use it as a learning tool, a lesson in awakening, nonresistance (and he's been able to do that, at least to some extent ... when he falls back into ego-self, he knows it and catches it). I've been able to apply these same lessons to my own job, which has also had its share of frustration and stress. Our most trying experiences can be our greatest teachers if we let them be.
Somewhere in the midst of all this, I went to Eckhart's website and learned the fabulous news: Oprah picked his book, A New Earth, for her bookclub (automatic bestseller status) and on top of that, she was having a 10-week, chapter-by-chapter, online class about the book!! I can't attend the class as it happens on this old, slow computer with dial-up Internet ... but Gordy and I are reading the book, I print out the class transcripts and we read those. We even went to the local library (where I happen to work) and watch some of the classes on YouTube (followed by dinner out and more discussion).
If ever there was the opportunity to have a critical mass of humans awakening to an evolution in consciousness, this is it!! And I am so blessed and grateful to be here in the middle of it all, with all these challenges that life gives me so that I can wake up and see what it all really means and who I really am.
Monday, April 7th:
Gordy and I were talking this morning ... he had read this
awakening story and was very pleased (took a printout to work to share
with some special people). We agreed that the further away we get from
those defining, awakening days of magic and mystery and miracles (which
were weeks ago now), the easier it becomes to slip back into old patterns.
It's true that we can never go back to who we were, knowing what we know
now, but those old ways have been with us for so long that it's difficult
not to regress. I notice underlying feelings of sadness and fear ... he
notices a tendency to judge and condemn ... we've both had moments of
"pain-body" activation ... but we catch it now, we see it, if
not during the actual event, then shortly thereafter. I've found that
this "pain-body" that Eckhart speaks of is a very intense physical-emotional
thing. In my case, I can feel it rising through my body and up to my face
which gets hot ... I feel like I want to cry ... or curse like a sailor
at the triggering person/event.
Monday, April 21st: Gordy is no longer employed at the job that became his place of torture, a vortex of negative sucking energy. His final official day is this Thursday (24th), but he left in torment and pain-body activation on April 9-10 (he was only back from his medical leave a short time). He was and is deeply sorry for and ashamed by the eruption of anger and frustration that he couldn't control, couldn't stop ... an emotional lancing of a pus-filled boil, the ending of a job he gave his heart to doing the best he could for years. This story is not finished (attorneys are involved) and it is still too raw to tell right now, anyway, even if it has produced great awakening for us both. There is another miracle in store, I know it. [September 08: Gordy started a new job and the contrasts to his former job are stunning, to say the least. He says it's almost too good to be true, the caring and support he gets now. He likes everyone, they like him, no hidden agendas, no judgments, even knowing the full story about how he left his former job ... the "family" atmosphere of the workplace there makes all the difference.]
Monday, June 9th: We received word that Gordy's former boss, one of the components in his stress at work during the last months at that job, died suddenly of a massive heart attack on a Sunday afternoon. He was only in his mid-50s. Before Gordy quit his job (no, there is not a chance he would ever return to it), his workplace stress was so bad that his blood pressure was through the roof. He was a heart attack waiting to happen, his doctor said ... which was why he was given two weeks medical leave away from his job. What a synchronicity it was to hear that his former boss died like that (it could very easily have been my husband)! Both Gordy and I, besides being very shocked by the news, felt deeply saddened especially for the family that this man left behind. [later in June/July: The job that he left behind suffered as well and Gordy did all he could by phone and eventually in person to help right the ship ... yes, even in the wake of his unhappy departure, Gordy still cares about the place he used to work and is still willing to help all he can when called upon.]
Chapter Two: Manifesting
This chapter began when Abraham came into my life. I work a few hours a week at the local library. Publishers occasionally send us free books. One day in June, a box arrived and I opened it ... out fell Ask and It Is Given: Learning to Manifest Your Desires and The Amazing Power of Deliberate Intent: Living the Art of Allowing, the teachings of Abraham from Esther and Jerry Hicks ... gifts from Hay House and Abraham-Hicks. I was so excited and stunned that I was nearly dancing. The library director must have thought I had lost it. She had no idea how amazing this event was. I gave her the Ask and It Is Given book to read and I took the Amazing Power book. I finished mine with great enthusiasm and insights by the end of June, but my boss couldn't really get into hers (she's not quite ready ... I gave her Eckhart's New Earth book too, but I don't think she's been able to read it). She gave it back to me and I am working on that one now in early July (I think I will have to buy both books for my own library).
The Car -- Sunday, July 6th: I bought my 2001 Hyundai Accent new in September 2001. I wanted a cheap car and I got it. The dealership experience was so bad that I had to get the state attorney general's office involved to make it right. I had a bad taste in my mouth about it all from the beginning. Then, the car began having problems. It had "tinkling" (like loose washers) behind the dashboard from day one (nobody could ever find it or stop it). Within two months, the gas gauge stopped working and multiple long trips to the Hyundai dealer couldn't fix it (minor inconvenience, we lived without it). It wasn't long before it started making occasional clunks and bangs and other disconcerting noises, especially when turning (the dealership service people said it was a lose tire iron or a boot that needed to be tightened ... it wasn't).
The car only had 38,000 miles in December 2006 when the noises got so bad I took it to my trusted local mechanic to find the problem ... the right CV axle was going out. I didn't trust Hyundai to fix it, even if it was under warranty, so my mechanic did it at a fair price. It helped ... but there were still intermittent noises, clunks, clatters. We stopped taking it on trips (we rented a car instead).
The last straw began in late spring 2008. After getting the tires replaced (a broken belt in a front one made the car shimmy and shake and I thought for sure the other CV axle had malfunctioned), I hoped that maybe I could take a break from car problems. I was wrong. We first noticed an intermittent surge when we were driving at slow speeds ... then the idle sometimes surged after putting the car in park. It got worse. I was afraid to drive it (Gordy chauffeured me around in his 1995 Geo Metro ... I never learned to drive a stick shift).
Maybe it was the transmission, since that is a big trouble spot with this particular vehicle or some sort of fuel-related malfunction. It would be covered on the drivetrain warranty if it was transmission, but would I trust the Hyundai service people to fix it right? And even if it was fixed, what would go out next? I knew without a doubt that it was over between me and the Accent. I had to have another car. It wasn't even worth the $100 for my local mechanic to put it on a scope to pinpoint the current problem. I just wanted it gone. It only had 51,000 miles on it, too.
I used the training I had gotten from Abraham by reading The Amazing Power of Deliberate Intent to define what I wanted (a new car and for the Accent to make it in for a trade-in). After lots of research, I narrowed the selection down to the Honda Fit (small, very fuel efficient, great reliability, and relatively inexpensive). I had no idea where the money would come from, but I knew it would come. I was going to use the balances available on our credit cards if I had to (obviously on our current income we couldn't get financed) ... but my wonderful father came through and gave me an advance on my inheritance. He said he would rather me have it when I need it (boy, did I need it) than after he dies. And when my "ship comes in" (it's on its way), I'm going to do that, too. Share the wealth ... spread it around. :-)
The day before I manifested the car into my reality, I was doing a walking meditation outside when suddenly I was surrounded, imbued, by the odor of "new car smell" ... I closed my eyes and I could feel the joy of being in the new car ... I was so excited about driving to visit family all over the state and beyond without worry about the car breaking down. All doubts were gone. I was ecstatic!
With the current gas price situation (about $4.50 a gallon here in the Puget Sound region), Honda Fits are selling out fast. Most dealers within a reasonable drive (considering the Accent's condition, we couldn't go too far) were sold out and wouldn't have any more until the 2009 models arrive in September or October. However, I found a few Honda dealers who still had some and they gave me e-mail quotes (I played them against each other until I got the price down as low as it would go). Then, suddenly, all but one pulled out because they sold all their base automatic Honda Fits!! I had a moment of panic, but I let it go. This would happen, I just knew it in my heart (and it did). The final dealer only had one left when we got there on July 3 ... BRIGHT RED!
I was telling my daughter the car story on the phone afterwards and we both agreed that red wasn't "my color" (I never would have picked a red car ... Gordy didn't really want red, either ... but it's not like we had a choice). My wise daughter said "Well, in China red is the color of prosperity and joy." I was stunned! Where did that come from, I asked her? "I don't know," she admitted. I thanked her so much ... I was wondering why the Universe saw fit (pun intended) to give me a red car and my daughter had given me the answer!
Some Internet research on the color red confirmed what my
daughter told me. It's the marriage color in India. In Feng Shui, it's
the energy of fire and represents creation, excitement, riches and luxury.
Some even paint their front doors red to welcome in abundance and good
luck. I also found out that red represents love and passion (roses, valentines)
and the essence of life (blood, the root chakra). Finally, my son reminded
me that it's a patriotic color (the red, white, and blue) associated with
nationalistic pride. So that's all pretty neat. We can get used to red
(we already have).
Thank you again, Hyundai Accent, wherever you are for your final act of courage. I hope you get fixed and someone buys you who will love you and I pray that you will run well the rest of your life.
July 5: we took our new red car on its first of many journeys to visit my daughter and her husband's family at their lake cabin. It was a fabulous trip... just like I envisioned in my mind two days before. I inhaled the new car smell, played my favorite CDs and almost cried because the joy was so intense.
Our second trip was to visit my parents across the state. I'm so grateful for their generosity and love when I needed it. The visit was beyond wonderful. For the first time in my life, I saw my parents for the people they really are. I understood their dramas and their public masks. I felt no more judgement and guilt and shame in their presence. I forgave all the childhood hurts and confusions and apparent wrongs. They did the best they could with what they had and I wouldn't be who and where I am today without them.
This is my first major manifestation in my new evolving life. After this I know that nothing is impossible. Gordy looks at me now with something between disbelief and awe: "Who am I to doubt," he says.
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