How pain and searching for a solution has been the leading thread in my life.
Grew up in post war France and still remember when things changed almost overnight in the sixties.
When I was twelve I was reading books about Tibet Lobsan Rampa and searching for answers that I couldn’t find in traditional religions.
When my parents divorced I was sure that no men would ever want me and began collecting relationships, leaving them in a preventive strike, leaving before they could abandon me.
After a break up with a Spanish boyfriend, I was devastated and lost, met my first husband on a campground near Barcelona. He was German. We were both lost and in pain and my career as a co-dependent started.
Together we emigrated to Canada to start a new life. I was 21.
3 years later a new separation and a divorce started a renewed search of happiness through a succession of a few more relationships. My cycle was 3 years..
Still searching I discovered the shamanic path through courses with Marilyn… on spirituality, she was a medium and I discovered I had abilities to know things directly, to perceive beyond body, to read mind. Considered joining apprenticeship with Sun Bear, but was petrified of facing that part of myself. This was a journey of no return and I did not feel equipped emotionally to embark on it.
Instead I immersed myself in work and study, acquiring an MBA while working in 5 years. My first priority became success, prove to myself and my father that as a women I am worth something. This was in the early seventies. During that time I also completed a pilot’s license and changed job. In the early eighties I had all the ingredients in my life that determine success. After a few years in my new job was promoted to General Manager of a midsize European company, had bought 2 properties, undergone major renovations in my house in downtown Montreal. But something was missing.
During that time I blamed it all on my mother, whom I felt was still controlling me in my psyche. Desperate after agonizing weeks of pondering I looked for help and went into therapy. I will never forget that first session that crystallized my predicament. I felt in prison, suffocating from pain and self adopted interdictions, powerful introjections from my French cultural conditioning that I thought I had left behind when I emigrated. My mother at that time was the scapegoat, she was to blame.
After a couple of years in therapy and group therapy, I participated in the Est training and between the 2 week-ends while walking my dog in Kent Park, I sat down to watch the sun set and then I had the most powerful experience of my life. In an instant I experienced my dimension of eternity, a moment out of time, pure consciousness, all knowingness, unlimited space, the vastness of Being, freedom, joy, light. No words can describe this experience. When I came out of this experience, I became obsessed with understanding what had happened to me and my searching resumed. Teaching is always what I had wanted to do but since leaving France never had a chance to make it happen. I took the bull by the horn with my usual drive and determination and got a part time teaching job at University of Quebec, teaching real estate finance at the undergraduate level. I was ecstatic, loved the experience but realized that teaching finance was not my passion. Teaching yes but not that subject!
It changed my life and a few years later, after a major company shake-up where all the top managers were fired, I was unemployed. This was the best thing that happened to me, since I made the choice not to go look for another job but to become my own boss and work for myself.
Through a franchising system I began teaching people how to create their lives, how to think creatively and bring about what they truly wanted for themselves in their live.
After a few years I realized I needed some further tools that my formal training in management had not equipped me with. So during the next 7 years I became a relationship counsellor.
In 1987 I chose to end a relationship that was going no where with a French man my own age, most of my other relationships had been with men 10 to 15 years older. I wanted a child and he was not ready. I was 38, biology was calling. In January 1988 I went to India in search of myself and also to check out if I would be able to adopt a child in the orphanage of Calcutta. I met Mother Theresa in Calcutta, worked with the sisters for one week and experienced the most intense emotional experiences ever in that incredible country. This was a spiritual journey visiting a few Ashrams, Guru May, Muktananda, north of Bombay, where I had the most miraculous encounter with a person that I had never met physically before but was supposed to meet in Paris a month later. We met <by accident> in front of the ashram. When we discovered the next morning who we respectively were we had goose pimps shivering down our whole body. Synchronicity at work, answers galore for each of us. In my whole life I never had so many miraculous experiences as during that month in India back in January 1988. When I later questioned how come I realized that I had absolutely no grip on anything in that land that was so different from my own and the only way to survive in it for me was to totally let go and be guided from the inside. My intuition was my only tool I could rely on.
I came back enlightened in love with everything and all. This higher state of being lasted about 3 months.
Back in my life and my teaching in Montreal, for the first time in my life, I felt at peace, not needing a partner to feel complete. I was whole and well.
I met my second husband, an ex colleague of my former boyfriend during a play in the Olympic Stadium AIDA. His family is formerly from India and though I knew him before I had never been interested or attracted to him. But that evening in the Olympic stadium the strangest thing happened, an attraction beyond cultures, time and space. It was love at first site, a deep connexion established beyond reason and circumstances.
6 months later he had a job offer to work in Riyadh for the Central Bank and I encouraged him to take the risk and go for it. I could have influenced him otherwise I was well aware of it then, but knew it was an important step in his own development, personally and professionally.
We entertained a long distance relationship for 7 years. Our daughter was born in 1990.
I knew that I still had many emotional issues to resolve, since after enlightenment, live goes on, healing is ongoing. There is never an all or nothing type of experience. However I was on the search for the one thing that would handle it all for me once and for all. That would squelch the deep pain that for ever was present in my gut when I was teaching, training, presenting, anything. At times it became unbearable, especially that already then I was teaching in an unconventional manner while most of my colleagues would follow the problem-solution model, I was teaching people who to create their lives, their businesses. The law of attraction, but that word was not a household name then back in the eighties. I was using movement, music, drawing, visualization, linking both sides of the brain, right and left hemisphere to access our unlimited potential. While I had tremendous results with people using those approaches, I still felt that deep pain in the center of my gut, acting out at times and still at others when I was experimenting with a new tool and technique that would for a time leave me balanced and whole.
Twice now in my life I had experienced what sages call enlightenment, pure consciousness and peace beyond words to describe it.
Searching resumed, meditation, advanced studies in counselling. Then in 1995 I felt I had reached a state of self acceptance and freedom in myself that would allow me to commit to a relationship without using all my pre-emptive strikes of breaking up relationship by fear of being abandoned. Also wanted to give my daughter a stable relationship with a family.
So I left everything behind, house, business, friends, a life that I loved to join my husband in the Middle East with our daughter. My drive was the need to have a family life for our daughter and myself. No longer wanting to do everything by myself. But that pattern is a tough one to break, control pattern having been present through eons to allow survival of life on planet Earth in our evolution from star dust to conscious beings.
Since I had chosen to go to the Middle East, and I felt free inside, no amount of outside restrictions due to the culture could alter my resolve and determination to recreate my life under those new conditions.
After spending 6 months enjoying being <a house wife>, and taking every opportunity to visit the numerous shopping centers and souks that exist in Riyadh, I thought of offering all those exotic products in a central location within the confines of western compound. So I started a gift shop, turning a second hand shop into a small little mini souk accessible without having the wear the black abaya, you had to clock your body with when going outside of western lifestyle within the compounds. Wearing black under the 45 degree C hot sun made you sweat and dry within seconds. Water had to be present at all times to avoid dehydration and head aches.
Took on Arabic Lessons at King Saud University. In 1998 after the departure of the American military from KSA, I joined the American Community Services as a counsellor.
This was a fascinating time, working with expatriates from all over the Western world, realizing that as we are all part of the human family, our respective problems are indeed very similar. It took me 5 years to meet Saudi Women and then I realized that I could not work in the same manner with people from an ethnocentric worldview.
In 1999 I met Andrea from New Zealand who initiated me into Reiki. That was the missing link in my own development, I suddenly became conscious of energy swirling around me. When she initiated me into a Reiki Master myself, I started to feel energy flowing out of my hands like a 2 inch water hose at full pressure releasing its pressure.
6 months later, I felt drumming in my hara center and felt a calling from the forest. It was a deep totally irrational feeling that I had to obey, I couldn’t not listen to this calling, it was so intense. So in July I spend a week with Tom Brown in NJ to learn survival techniques and in early August went into the woods of Algonquin park with a back pack and no food for 10 days. The direct teachings nature provide are a source of learning we have disconnected ourselves from in our Western cultures.
Back in Saudi Arabia in September, 9/11 changed everything.
From that moment I became obsessed with creating an NGO that would link expatriate expertise to underdeveloped third world regions, but the Iraq war and the repeated terrorist incidents against Westerns shook up my world.
In 2000 and 2001 I had followed another irrational calling and went to Florida to be trained by John Perkins as a shamanic practitioner. Those tools allowed me stay centered during 2003 and the repeated attacks towards Westerners in Riyadh and Saudi Arabia, having learned to live in two world at the same time, physical reality and alternate reality in touch with Spirit guides and protective entities. I felt compelled to teach a workshop based on my new insights to Westerners and Saudis alike. In May 2004 I lost my new balance once again when an American living on our compound got decapitated. My old survival pattern re-emerged and my daughter and myself abruptly left Riyadh early July 2004 and took refuge in my mother’s apartment in Strasbourg, France where I had grown up. She had never moved and had lived 60 years in the same apartment. She was in need of help, so my deep rooted caregiver and co-dependent patterns re-emerged.
It took me a while to realize that we had all the symptoms of post traumatic stress disorder. Whenever I heard a loud noise, I cringed, all my body tight, a bomb must have gone off somewhere. I had heard the bomb that blew a deep crater and devastated a Western compound less than a mile from where we lived and killed many expatriates. It was approx. 11.30 PM and I was meditating when it happened, the sound wave made me jump from my sofa wondering what had happened. It was only at 3 AM when a call from Canada woke us up and we learned what had happen.
During this first year in Strasbourg when I was travelling on the tram, I stayed near an exit and was for ever on full alert. Coming back after 40 years to the country I grew up was like a nightmare. I was worse than a stranger in my home land, totally disconnected from anything inside myself, in survival mode galore.
My daughter was 13 at the time and her experience was even more intense than mine, depressed and lost, missing her friends and the life she knew.
She kept on dreaming to move back to Canada and like two lost souls not anchored anywhere, I agreed to move in with my in-laws in Richmond Hill, my husband would finally join us and we could resume a family life. My daughter would get to know her roots on her father’s side, her aunts, and cousins. Sounded reasonable, so off we go.
Took on coaching training at ITP (Institute of Transpersonal Psychology) but could not find a target market to work with. I was so lost and disconnected from my self.
In hindsight moving back to Canada might not have been the best decision on the emotional front. Living with my in-laws in a culture so different from my own was more than a cultural shock. I kept busy with reorganizing the house, renovations, gardening, being the driver and support person for all. I realize now that I was fully attempting to control everything and everybody. The sooner I could get some order in the outside of my life the sooner I could resume working. Anger and frustration were my lot as I could not influence circumstances. Attempting to reconnect with my former identity as a business manager I participated on the board of ICF, but that deep pain of feeling worthless and lost was creating havoc in my body. With the help of a naturopath and cleansing, I reclaimed bits and pieces of myself, resumed teaching Reiki. Found a group of evolutionaries following the teachings of Andrew Cohen, got trained in Spiral Dynamics with Dr. Don Beck in New York in June 2007. I was beginning to get grounded again and started to attract some clients.
When my daughter left for university to England and I fully got that once more my husband would not join me in Canada, I made the first conscious choice for myself in 4 years and chose to come back to France in our apartment and sort myself out, work on my project of creating an internet business, and a humanitarian project. Joined a mentoring program.
But still there was a disconnect within my soul that was sabotaging all my efforts and perpetrating procrastination. Feelings of not good enough, what I call my PhD syndrome were activated full spin by the mere thought of exposing myself for the world to see on the internet.
What was that part of my Self that my ego was protecting so jealously?
I had some further insights into my unconscious when totally unexpectedly I reconnected with disowned parts of my French identity during a retreat in Germany with Andrew Cohen. The last two weeks have been intense as I was grappling with identity issues, my righteousness and my procrastination. The fear of exposing myself, no amount of willpower could conquer it, sheer determination to break through no longer working.
Yesterday my solar plexus was acting up and calling my attention. So I chose to listen to my body and explore what wants to be revealed.
Lying down, listening to drumming I journeyed to a past life where I was killed as a wise women, probably during medieval times. My wisdom and knowledge was not appreciated by patriarchal authority figures. This is the energy present in my soul that wants to reconnect and offer its integrated power and knowledge to this current life.
I sobbed and with the help of powerful spirit guides I felt that eternal, powerful energy merging with my body. Today I feel whole, fear of exposing myself have vanished, this is my purpose in this life, I can no longer rationalize differently.
I can move forward now fully integrated, owning my power, knowing how to exercise it wisely for the betterment of the Whole.
Gratitude, I feel whole again.