I find it interesting to look back and to see the threads that have always been a part of my story. Over time I have identified what those threads are, named them, owned them, and I have created a life around them.
Those threads are a distinct part of my story and they are listening, heart, empathy, practicality, and spirit-based threads.
I grew up in the Midwest with a pastor for a father and a teacher for a mother. Education, hard work, and fundamental Christianity were prized possessions in our household. I am an only child and I have been a perfectionist ever since I can remember.
I have long been attracted to the Christian mystics–before I had a word for them. I found the church of my youth to be dry, lacking in spirit, and oftentimes very empty. I was good at following directions, rules, and the like, but to no avail. I could not find God. I could not connect with the divine spark. In my religious training, I was taught that God chose certain people and condemned others. I feared that I was one of the condemned because I could never “feel” God–experience God’s fullness. I longed to transcend the strictures of religion, but I had no words for that emotion or desire. I wrote poetry, I pined, I fretted. Once I became familiar with Julian of Norwich, I found a bit of hope. She was introduced to me in the context of feminism (a new concept to me, at the time) and my world exploded into bits of light, color, sound, and hope.
Needless to say, I have been seeking God for my entire life. I sought God in church, and then as a young adult, outside of church. I found God most clearly in nature, breath, and through a more “eastern” approach. I found God clearest in silence–even though it was hard to remain in the circle of quiet. I can say that I fully embraced God one weekend at the Monastery of the Holy Spirit during a Christian Mysticism retreat. I finally found what I had been looking for and seeking: an authentic relationship with the divine. God came near in a powerful way, and continues to remain near. Part of this shift is because I had enough time and space to walk away from fundamentalism to find Light differently–to walk through the door the Christian mystics opened for me. To accept what I felt as part of my journey instead of what I knew–or thought I knew.
Throughout my time outside of the Church, I found a space where spirituality was a foundation and something to be celebrated. Through my therapy, writing circles, and sitting in other women’s circles, I met God in a new way. Some of the language was dusted off of my old approach to God and things began to shift and to feel cleaner, newer, less condemned. For the first time I felt accepted in my need, search, questions instead of in spite those things. I am finding wholeness. I am on my path. I am still unknowing and unlearning some lessons from the church of old. I am walking more closely with God through silence than I ever did with words. I am open to the process more than I have ever been in all my thirty-eight years. I have since returned to the Church, and I seek to bring with me a fresh perspective so others can benefit from meeting God, fellowshipping with other Christians, and finding silence in the chaos of organized religion and American culture.
I have shifted into doing work that uses my gifts, strengths, and passions in a soul-filled and authentic way. I work primarily with women, but I see men and children benefit from the work women are doing in their own lives. I seek to support other spiritual souls who are ready to connect more deeply with others through Circle work and with individuals who are ready for their own personal transformation via Transformational Life Coaching, which you can read about here.
I look forward to meeting you here, in this virtual space, and possibly work with you in some way in the future!
❤ ❤ ❤