Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Journals and Journaling

If you know me in real life (and probably if you know me online, too), you know that I am obsessed with journaling.  I try to make it a daily practice.  Sometimes (if time permits), I will even journal multiple times a day!  The clarity I get from it can be quite addictive.

I do a sort of free form, stream-of-consciousness, journaling.  I allow my hands to be a recorder - while my brain dictates.  Because I can't write as fast as I normally think, it slows my brain down a bit, quiets the extraneous thoughts, and allows what is REALLY on my mind a space to be heard + recorded.

And every time I do that - I get the answer.  Sometimes, the answer to my problem/question will just pop into my mind - as if it were already there hiding beneath the surface waiting to be called up. Sometimes it will come from something externally - like a post on facebook - or a passage from a book that I am reading.  Putting my issues into words, for some reason always calls the solution to me.

For the past few years, I have used a cheapie composition book to journal in. It is covered with a cute, scrappy-quilted, journal cover (that I plan to reuse - but by the time I finish a journal, I am in the mood to make another cover).

I love the look of the outside of them - but I wanted my current journal to be a bit more expressive of my inner world. So, I made a book that represents that - a book filled with black pages.  I know, that sounds very dramatic.

But seriously, when I sit quietly inside my own head - it is so dark and grim in there - probably from being so repressed.  I learned from my super religious up-bringing, that we are to search OUTSIDE of ourselves for answers, that the Bible holds all of the (important) answers, and if there is any conflict in my mind - then I must squash the inner *knowing* that is conflicting.

Because what is it that we really know?  Isn't man inherently evil?  And without believing in the Christian faith, aren't we lost and doomed for hell?  Maybe...

But if I keep following a path that someone else has dictated is the *right one*, I will most certainly have a nervous breakdown.  My family has a history of mental illness, so this is more than probable.

Anyway, that is the back story to my journal of black pages.  Fortunately, the more I face my shadows (shine light on them) they disappear!  So maybe my next journal will be a bit brighter. ;)

Are you ready to start journaling? Do it!  Do it right now!  It may take a while to get your flow - and to start receiving inner wisdom - but it is soooo, soooo amazing when you do!  Here are a few tutorials to make your own journal!

Here is a tutorial on how to make a journal cover.              Here is one on how to make a journal with black pages.


Love and Light


Saturday, July 27, 2013

I am *not* ugly.

 We recently had in-laws in town, and one of them gave me a hard time about my feet - that hurt my feelings so bad, I started crying.  In the store.  Well, it was a corner of the store so not to draw attention to myself - especially from the offending family member.  Maybe she would be sympathetic and
apologize - or maybe she wouldn't be and state that she was just "speaking the truth".

And speaking the truth, would be accurate - as my feet were horrible.  I hadn't had a pedicure in at least 6 months.  I may have polished my toes since then - but not in the last few months.  So not only was the polish chipping - but it had grown out so bad that the bottom third had no polish at all, whatsoever.  It was bad.  

I describe myself as a low-maintenance type of chick.  Actually it may be a bit more extreme than that.  I do not do a lot of self-maintenance besides the obligatory daily shower and brushing/flossing my teeth twice a day.

I rarely shave my legs.
I (obviously) do not get pedicures.
And my eyebrows are fully grown in most of the time.

These things may be present in someone *spiritual* and not concerned about such vanity.  However, my tears indicated that was not the case.

I could have just gotten a pedicure and been done with it.... But I knew from my extreme emotional response that it was deeper than that.  And it was.

So I journaled my way through it.  Which is what I usually do when I am having some sort of inner dilemma    From journaling, it became clear that that the reason I don't do things to *prettify* myself is because I do not feel pretty.  In fact, I feel that spending time + money on making myself attractive is a waste of both.

Which is really, really sad and pathetic.

And stupid.  I am obviously not (that) ugly.  Actually, I don't think I am ugly at all.  I just sometimes have a warped image of myself.  Not unlike a lot of women.

And my journaling alerted me to that.  I haven't quite finished working through it completely, yet - but seeing the issue so clearly is a huge step in resolving it.   I am so, so, grateful for journaling.  I highly recommend it!

BTW, I did get a pedicure (paid for by said family member!)- and made myself a cute little toe ring.  Here is a tutorial for you to make your own!  Just use a smaller gauge wire - I used 16 gauge - which is pretty easy to find in the hardware store.

Love and Light

Friday, July 26, 2013

My Journey

So, I have kinda kept this under wraps, but I have not been a * practicing* Christian for a few years now.  And I say practicing instead of just Christian - because I haven't quite let go of Christianity.

Maybe it's the fear of going to hell.  Maybe it's the disappointment that will be present in so many friends and family.  Maybe it's because my childhood brain-washing has been so thorough, I can not let it all go. Or maybe Christianity is the *real* truth - and like the bible says in Romans 8: 38-39, once you are *saved* you are always saved.

Regardless of my Christian-ness or not, I have not stepped foot into a church in 3 years - and the thought of doing so makes me want to hyperventilate.

About 3 years ago, we were attending an AMAZING church.  I loved the pastor, the music, even the *style* of the church.  Everybody there wore chucks and had tattoos - and the black women rocked awesome naturals.  It was the best church I had ever attended... until something snapped. Nothing happened at the church or anything... but for some reason, I could NOT go back.  Like ever.

Whatever snapped was internal and I finally admitted that Christianity didn't resonate with me - and my body would not let me go back.

Let me tell you a little about my story.

I had been *saved* since I was a toddler - and took it very seriously.  I read my bible, religiously.  I tried my best not to sin.  I went to a string of churches, each one mostly better than the last.  Unfortunately, none of those things gave me a relationship with Spirit.  I felt like I was always on the outside, looking in... waiting my turn for spiritual enlightenment.  Never happened while I was in church.

I went to very emotional churches like: New Birth in Lithonia.  I went to very conservative churches like Second Baptist in Warner Robins.  I went to very literal churches like Calvary Chapel in Fort Valley. Once, we even had our own tiny church in our living room (my husband was not the pastor) - but we did (along with my brother-in-law) make up more than half the membership.

Although the churches were all quite different - the Christian message was the same: "You are evil without Christ.  You are lost with out Jesus.  Anyone who is not Christian is lost and evil and is going to hell."  And this message just does not sit well with me.

Logically, the way a message sits with me is irrelevant.  If God says it, then it's so.  What does my emotional unrest have to do with anything? Just because I didn't *feel* it. Just because I don't *hear* from God, does not mean that anything is wrong with Christianity.  It just means that something is wrong with *me*.    <- and this logic is what kept me going back to church.

It is also what prevented me from listening to and hearing my internal higher self.  I was convinced that something was wrong myself.  Until I stopped going to church.

Then all of a sudden, it seemed like the lights came on.  Okay, a very, very, dim light.  But I was finally able to get snatches of wisdom. It is amazing!

I still have issues with hearing from my Higher Self, consistently. I still have many shadows that need light.  I still have questions about things that come up on my journey.  But *finally* I have a knowing - that I am on the right path.   I am afraid - but so, so excited!

Please join me on my journey :).

Love and Light