I was so sick on the way over here.
I felt like I might die.
I had made a decision to move across the country to a place I had never even seen, yet felt called to go to. And now I was flying to California, just a mere two weeks later. The entire time my stomach rumbled. I couldn’t eat a thing. Digestion was all effed up.
When I stopped in LAX for my connection to Santa Barbara, the anxiety was at its worst. I sat down in the airport lounge in a quiet corner to catch my breath and try to prevent a full blown panic attack.
It is this way, you see, when we leave the old self behind
and claim that which we have secretly dreamed.
I was terrified.
That the rent was too high and I might not be able to pay it one month.
That I might end up lonely and meet no one here to be part of my new soul family.
That I might hate the community living experiment I was trying for the first time and that I would not get along with the women I was sharing the house with.
Behind me I had left a life that no longer fit me.
A lot of pain. Disappointment. Abuse. Old patterns that had finally died.
And even though it was the right choice for me, I was so afraid.
As I drove from the Santa Barbara airport to the address marked in my GPS, a song called “The Goddess of Death” came on randomly in the car.
How apropros, I thought.
And then I drove up the driveway of my new home and was rendered speechless.
A line of old, mother-oak trees formed a canopy over me, the sunlight streaming in through the leaves. A scent of salt, orange blossoms, musty wood, and ocean-fishiness that felt so deeply familiar yet also new.
As I parked my car and brought up the two bags with all of my belongings in the world, I almost could not breathe at the beauty. Before me was the the Pacific Ocean and behind me the majestic mountains of the Padre National Forest.
This was THE place. The place I had dreamed about many times, many years ago.
Yet I had not known its name before this very moment.
This is where you were always meant to be, said a voice inside of me. You’re home.
If there was ever a time a person stopped believing in magic,
this would be the incident that would awaken an intense fervor for it.
Truth be told, it is such a beautiful place that I remained in this state of disbelief for weeks.
All the while, the land speaking to me.
Eat my fruits.
I ate blood oranges until the red juice ran down my chin and stained all of my clothes.
Until I could not take another drop.
Finally full of the things I had hungered for, for 37 years.
It’s now 2 years later.
None of my fears came true.
I paid my rent on time and easily, every month. It has never, ever been a problem.
Why? Because the moment I said yes to that rent, I also said yes to receiving what was needed to cover it.
Funny how that works right?
It’s never only take action unless you are 100% certain it will work out.
Instead it’s jump and the right wind will carry you to where you want to go.
Certainty is a never-arriving train ride that will
leave you stranded at the station for eternity.
I got along marvelously with the first two women I lived with in this house. They were absolutely lovely and we had a harmonious house-sharing experience. One of them was also a coach like me and we became dear friends. We still stay in touch, months after she left.
My business doubled its revenue here within 1 year of being here.
I made new friends.
Santa Barbara is one of my soul’s true homes, particularly the property I live on.
So many clients have come here to my retreats and profoundly healed.
It was destined.
And if we’re going to be totally honest, it sometimes feels like a reward I am at times timid to accept. Even though I walk around this land I live on every day and she tells me that I am her bride.
I had to leave so many things that were no longer serving me to get here.
Big things. Things that shape our nervous systems and turn us into who we are.
Things that can’t come into the new big life we create from the dreams we’ve always secretly held in our hearts.
I grew up Catholic, and while I am no longer Catholic, in the Catholic religion there is a teaching I love. It’s about the concept of “Grace.”
Grace, as defined in Catholicism, is a gift from God that is just granted to you one day. There is nothing you had to have done to receive it. You didn’t have to earn it, prove you were worth it, or work for it.
You simply are gifted Grace.
It is one of the Great Mysteries.
It’s almost hard to understand Grace.
We are so conditioned to think that we must earn or prove our right to have some great blessing. Or that only “perfect” people are bestowed such divine gifts.
But Grace says, nope. I’m just raining down upon whoever I feel like and you cannot earn this, you cannot ask for it, you cannot do anything for it. It comes when it desires to.
I’ve experienced grace a few times in my life. It feels like a broad shaft of light coming down from the heavens and filling your life and body with so much goodness that you almost cannot receive it all.
This place I live in is a Grace that was bestowed upon me.
It is Grace every single day I wake up.
I never stop waking up in amazement.
And one of the profound things that this land of Grace has taught me and continues to teach me is worthiness.
Here, I am a woman that is gently roused from her sleep by the morning sun, serenaded by birds in loving & protective trees, and guarded by the great Red Tailed Hawk spirit that sits on the tree above her as she works.
It is so beautiful here that I have experienced an expansion of what I believe I am worthy of. And every day this immense beauty works on the small part of me that still cannot believe I could have it this good and aligned where I live.
Growing up with abuse, home was not a place that felt like surrender.
It was a place where you never knew what might happen or which face of the coin you’d get. The one of pure love? Or the one that dropped the other shoe on you just when you were beginning to relax?
As leaders, we carry these experiences into our adult lives. Into our businesses.
They affect how we show up. They affect the level of power that pours from us.
We get the big deal, the big opportunity, or the breakthrough in our business…
and we wonder if we are really worthy of it.
Will I fuck it up?
Will someone come and take it away?
Can I handle this?
Do I really get to have this?
When will I be punished for this pleasure?
These questions drain us. Pull apart our power pin prick by pin prick.
Hold us back ever so slightly.
Unconsciously influence our actions and our decisions.
So the work of expanding your worthiness is THE work.
It is not even a question, your worthiness.
You were born for all of this and more.
Your nerves were designed for these extremes.
Why do you doubt what is yours?
The land tells me these things every time I grip internally with fear of all the goodness rushing through me and around me.
I briefly went out with a man once who told me, your love is so pure and profound and my heart cannot handle such grace.
There was a piece of him that couldn’t receive so much love, because he had not yet done the work of feeling worthy of such a love. I lovingly walked away from that relationship.
Because I am worthy of one who feels worthy of such things.
Sometimes I feel like I am that man here on this land.
Except, the difference is, I am willing.
And I am afraid sometimes.
But you don’t have to be unafraid. Or perfect.
You just have to be willing.
So I let Grace’s hands enter my body and expand my heart to receive even more.
I let this land widen my ribs and open up my hunger for more than I ever thought I could be worthy of.
It is time for a new life, my love.
And your work now is to expand your sense of worthiness.
We do that by starting with one question:
How would you show up if you showed up as Worthy?
(I’ll tell you one thing, showing up as worthy changes how you show up.
I walk around these blood orange trees.
I gather stones and whisper prayers of worthiness for us and lay them gently in the soil.
They are seeds waiting hungrily to sprout. They are here to become trees upon which women will lean and pour their hearts out to the stars.
My friend Tynia Johnson Anderson said to me once, even if your brain thinks your body can’t handle it, say to the Universe, “I’ll take these blessings anyway.”
May you claim your worthiness by dreaming and DOING bigger than ever before.
The things so large they are almost outside of your imagination.
It is time for a new life.
And you are worthy of it.
May you take these blessings anyway.