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The Fairy Godmother does not live at the White House!

When I was in the second grade, my family moved from a small town to a larger city . Of course, this meant leaving familiar surroundings and embracing a new home, school and friends which, for a 7 year old was a lot of change. The ‘new’ school was ‘new’ only to me. Its dingy gray exterior and boxy construction presented an aged, uninviting vision that left an unsettled feeling in the pit of my stomach and did nothing to generate enthusiasm or inspiration.  I arrived my first day at the new edifice of learning after a long walk of 2 miles to get there and immediately felt unhappy, vulnerable and alone. Soon after this new twist in my life against which I railed, I began to create fantasies of the heroes from my favorite TV show, Whirlybirds, landing in the schoolyard with their Bell 47 helicopter to rescue me. I envisioned the surprise and envy on the faces of my fellow ‘inmates’ as I was swooped up to freedom by my rescuers and whisked away to a place where everything I could ever want was available at my mere asking for it. I felt with delicious joy the feeling of being so special as to be chosen by them to be taken into their care and custody. Every time I ran that movie in my imagination, secure, happy, at peace feelings flooded my otherwise tortured and powerless existence. Truth is, as I, the 7 yr old, discovered – nobody  was coming to save me and all the magical thinking in the world would not shift my sense of insecurity or change my circumstances. Whirlybirds’ pilots were actors and there was no chance in hell that my fairy tale would ever materialize – but it never stopped me from day-dreaming about the possibility.

Like my 7 yr old imaginings, it occurred to me that, as individuals in today’s troubled America, we are looking to someone else to satisfy our needs and longings and save us from our untenable life situations. We seem to be incapable of seeing life as within our power to do something about.  Instead, we unconsciously give away our power to others and expect them to provide the external life circumstances that create a sense of safety and well-being for us.  Case in point – the proclamations of portions of the populace that we didn’t get the change we were looking for. A mere 18 months into this current presidency there is an outcry from the disenfranchised  to change yet again, the flavor of the Washington DC government. It seems as if our collective ‘wanting, wishing or fear-driven child’ personae has been ignited and the satisfaction and successes must be both immediate, complete and individually recognizable….NOW!   The external source of this indulgence is partially manipulated from those out of power. More importantly, the inner cause, as we know from Voice Dialogue,  comes from the voice of our repressed child parts.  The imperative for a more balanced existence invites us to wise up to this aspect of us, and quiet the mechanism that operates in opposition to our ability to accept personal responsibility for our emotional, mental and physical well-being.  but, how can this be done when the pervasive sentiment teaches us to be afraid and to feel vulnerable?

First discover the cause – How did we get here? It’s an inside job!!!!

Our view of the world is formed from the inside out not the other way around.  From our early years of life when uncomfortable or abusive things happened to us such as starting kindergarten or Sunday school, watching Mom and Dad argue, experiencing illness or other tragic events in our families, struggling to garner love in a dysfunctional home environment,  we made crazy meaning of what was happening to us so we could feel safe and assure our survival. At that tender age, we had few sophisticated tools to use and it often came down to the silencing  our intuitive emotional reactions  in order to stay safe and feel loved. Doing the bidding of the adults in our life no matter how much it went against what our authenticity wanted to do seemed the only pathway to security. Sadly,  those suppressive behaviors  became our conditioned response to acceptable actions – a belief that we carry unconsciously into our adulthood.

As adults, when we operate from those emotional 7 yr old selves – wishing for rescue, silenced in our authentic desires – we tend to develop parent-child relationships with our spouses, friends, bosses and government that  divest us of the responsibility to make conscious choices and decisions for our life circumstances. Instead, we play the blame game – it is someone else’s fault and they need to fix what they did to us. Think about today’s political atmosphere – frightened, people find their power in anger and blame.  It is as if the expectation is that the Fairy Godmother must scatter fairy dust over the country and make everything all better! and return things as they were.  Of course, the head Godmother lives at the White House – we elected him to take care of us exactly as we want!…we get our old jobs back, get our homes back so we can continue to live as we have…

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When CHANGE comes calling…..


“The only thing certain in life is death and taxes…and….”

…. after the experiences of this summer, I would emphatically add “CHANGE” to that list of inevitable events. Over the past few months in addition to our own adventures, we were witness to a myriad of changes in the lives of those we love – death of loved ones,  health emergencies, lost employment, children leaving home for the first time, expanding families as babies arrive in the world, and relocation to facilitate new beginnings . Personally, we were brought up short by health challenges that shifted  attention from our exuberant lifestyle of activity and exploration to a complete focus on wellness. The past five months totally immersed us in discovery of the source of an illness that hit seemingly overnight and has lasted much longer. In a cascade of medical appointments, testings and opinions, we spent the entire time searching for a return path to wellness from the trail of illness we had somehow wandered down. Every dimension of being – physical, emotional, spiritual and quantum – conspired to create a frightening, mysterious chaos into which we entered. The upshot of it all? The chaos created CHANGE – changed capability, changed flexibility,  changed focus, changed attitudes, changed activity and ultimately changed life direction. None of these changes have been easily or linearly navigated nor are they complete. But during this transition, we have glimpsed meaning and perspective and intuitively set up inquiry to excavate answers. It has been the only thing that has kept us going in an otherwise stormy sea of unknowns. It is what has kept us patiently taking one step at a time and letting go of superfluous activities and involvements. The challenges that had plopped themselves on our plate made it impossible to maintain our old way of life.  ….forced CHANGE was upon us and all we could do was respond and continue to navigate the terrain as we encountered it.

The struggle against Change – Our sometimes inelegant journey

It would be ideal to say that our responses were always grace-filled and aware – however, it often took the form of railing against the whole process – anger, frustration, lashing out at ‘so-called’ experts, arguments about next steps,  rebellion against restrictions and the loss of the comfort of a way of life we had created and embraced.  We never let go of our personal responsibility – always searching, inquiring, trying yet another protocol. After many months, at the edge of exhaustion, it became clear that we were called to let go, trust and surrender – an actualized experience of our spiritual journey. My personal recollection of such a moment  happened as I watched a breast cancer victim on TV – it felt like a moment of clarity we were meant to discover. It wasn’t so much what she said, as it was the sense of profound humility she exuded in having been forced to give up to her process of recovery.  I felt so guilty about my whining ways as I witnessed the grace of acceptance before me. In every fibre of my being, I ceased to struggle ‘against’ and began to look more deeply  ‘at’ what was being asked of me and us in this crazy experience. It seemed for Terry also, the quest ended in a moment of profound -giving up…out of ideas, out of steam to continue and out of fight to think his way through the dilemna.  From that point on, things have improved and expanded…new, effective helpers have appeared, plausible solutions  and a meaningful body of new work has been embraced, new strengths and capabilities have emerged. CHANGE has arrived and even though we still sail the treacherous waters of the unknown, we have allowed ourselves to open to trust in  wisdom at work.

Outside the individual experience also lies forced CHANGE  – in the nation

The national crisis in health care reform and the associated ‘public exorcism’ (credit to a friend – Kelly Walker – for that crystaline metaphor)  of fear and loathing that erupted with it provided a mirror that reflected the effects of CHANGE  on a grander scale.   As I observed the extreme behavior, I discovered some of my own reactionary resistance to change – the righteous indignation and anger that someone upset my reality was clearly plastered on the screen before me every night on evening news – screaming, ranting folk who underneath their bravado were simply scared about the forced CHANGE that national circumstances had delivered to their door. The challenge became intensely personal and they did not like it one bit nor did they have any tools with which to develop perspective.  With every ounce of their being, they struggled and railed against the government, their President, and any perceived suggestion of change to their known way of life.  As we discovered in our summer of transformation, the ‘return to normal’ they sought is impossible.

Forced CHANGE is the harbinger of new pathways

Forced CHANGE is the harbinger of new pathways – pathways that can only be traversed when we cease to struggle and begin to inquire, explore and open to the deepest faith that it is time for the emergence of something beyond a return to the old ways of living  – ways that have given us a planet that is exhausted and incapable of responding to our petulant, consuming demands – Just as we personally were invited to hear something different and respond to a seemingly uninvited experience throughout this summer, perhaps the entire population of this planet is being offered a golden opportunity to find deeper respect for each other and expanded consciousness in the challenge of CHANGE – perhaps it isn’t ‘forced’ at all – at the quantum level, we never cease to evolve and co-create our growth. Whether we are conscious of it or not,  CHANGE is an inevitable and necessary side-effect of being human. Without change, chaos and disruption – a place where we often feel disconnected from the divine and our own soul- we would not be inspired to seek unity with our divinity. It is our Hero’s Journey  that allows us to traverse an ever-expanding field of consciousness and capability.

Life is a process of becoming, a combination of states we have to go through. Where people fail is that they wish to elect a state and remain in it. This is a kind of death….Anais Nin

When CHANGE comes knocking on your door – know that you are built to survive and to thrive on it -with each profound challenge, we contribute to yet another discovery and emerge confidence – a confidence that invites trust, surrender, listening and understanding that we are part of a tapestry that is in constant re-construction – each time becoming more aware, beautiful and powerful -more connected to your soul.

A powerful underscore – watch this :