My Love Story

IMG_2068_2It is the day before Valentine’s Day and I’m feeling particularly thankful for the adorable man who is asleep in our bedroom as I write this. I love Valentine’s Day. I love the pink and red paper cut out hearts hanging from ceilings, displays full of delicious chocolates and cookies, sappy sentimental cards, and the dozens of crimson roses wrapped in tissue paper. I especially love the chocolate.

I didn’t always feel this way about Valentine’s Day. In fact, this is only the second year ever that I’ve had someone to celebrate with. Before this relationship, I used to despise the Day of Love and would celebrate by wearing black, eating ice cream, and watching bad movies with my other single girlfriends. I remember how dreadful Valentine’s Day was in middle school and high school when I watched all the popular girls receive carnations from the popular boys in the National Honor Society’s “Send your Valentine a Flower” yearly fundraiser. I remember how angry I was and how much I couldn’t wait for the day of sickly fake pink flowers and cards to be over.

So how did I go from a grim girl dressed in black cursing about love, to someone tempted to plaster her walls in fuchsia hearts?

I fell in love.

But not with anyone else.

I fell in love with myself.

Let me explain. For years and years, I dreamed about the magical man I would one day meet who would make all my problems vanish. He would swoop me up in his strong arms, take me back to his castle, cook delicious food for me, gather flowers from his garden, and tend to my every desire.  I spent most of my waking life fantasizing about the soulmate I would one day meet who would be able to read my mind and meet my every need. He was perfect – tall, dark, handsome, wealthy, strong, smart, successful, masculine and completely emotionally intelligent. It was terribly fun to be in such a deep state of longing about the man I had yet to meet. But it also left me miserable and feeling like I needed that soulmate to be happy. I truly believed that I would not be happy until meeting this magical dark-haired prince.

Eventually, something happened. Years of being single spanned into decades of being single. I started to doubt that I would ever meet this perfect prince of a man that I just knew I was destined to be with. I was single for so long and had so many disastrous dating experiences that I started to give up on the idea of a soulmate completely. I’m not sure when the exact moment was, but I started to become aware of how much energy I had given to this idea of the “soulmate.”

For the first time, I objectively examined my life as it actually was, sans soulmate. I was single, but I had my own tiny apartment that was all mine where I could do whatever I wanted (like set up a painting studio on my kitchen floor at 3 a.m.), friends who really got me, a beach that I could drive to in under a half hour, and work that I loved. I looked around and it dawned on me, that I had created a life that was all mine and that strangely enough, I really enjoyed that life.

It was in this moment that I realized I had started to fall in love with myself and my own life. I loved my incredible support system and the wonderful freedom I had. I loved that on a whim, I could take off and drive to Santa Cruz and spend $8 on a fancy smoothie from Café Gratitude and drink it on the beach with my own good company. Instead of focusing at everything I thought I was missing (the man), I organically started loving everything I had. And everything changed!

Valentine’s Day no longer was about seeking love from another to feel worthy, validated, accepted and loved. I had unintentionally created a life where I already felt worthy, validated, accepted and loved  – by me. And so the Pepto-Bismol colored heart and sugary candy no longer represented the love I didn’t have, but the love that was all around me. My love for Valentine’s Day was born.

The Day of Love has become a celebration of all the many forms of love I have in my life. I love myself, Spirit, my family, friends, and each and every one of my clients. I experience such an abundance of love in my heart these days that sometimes I spontaneously well up with tears while sitting on the couch staring at the redwood trees in our backyard.

And yes, I also love the tall handsome man I did eventually meet. He is by no means the perfect fantasy I dreamed about when I was 13 years old. There is no castle and he has no cooking skills. But he offers me his heart, and I take it.

The New Way to do Romantic Relationships

 

Romantic relationships are a juicy and rich topic right now. As you may be experiencing, relationships are quickly changing. It seems as though even many of the most solid of couples are breaking up or reformulating their relationships. As consciousness changes, so do relationships. Given that at the current moment,  consciousness seems to be skyrocketing, it is not wonder that relationships are facing challenges and with them, many opportunities.
            In the old energy, we often cameDSC_0669_3 together based on old karma or disownment of our own aspects. When karma pulls two people together, it may feel as though two people have known each other before and are mysteriously pulled towards each other. These relationships are often fraught with difficulties and drama as two people try and rectify their past relationships and personal karma. These relationships can be draining and challenging until two people are able to come to a place of self-forgiveness in regards to all aspects of their relationship. At this point, the karma clears. These relationships offer a tremendous opportunity to heal old wounding.
            Additionally, relationships may form because we have disowned aspects, or part, of ourselves that we need someone else to carry. In these relationships, we unconsciously ask our partners to hold parts of ourselves that we have either abandoned or feel we cannot hold ourselves.  The classic example of this would be a relationship between a very traditionally feminine woman and masculine man such as marriages characterized in the hit TV show Mad Men. In these marriages, the women played a very submissive and passive role to their husbands who were active and charged with protecting the family. The feminine surrendered her masculine to the man and vice versa. Often, the feminine often gives her voice to the masculine and he in turn sacrifices his emotional self. In this way, the woman often carried a man’s own feminine and he carried her own masculine.
            With this leap in consciousness, everything is changing. New consciousness is asking us to own our disowned parts and to start forming conscious partnerships that are based on nothing more than a desire to share and experience with another person (or many people). When we own our un-integrated aspects, we become whole and no longer need another person to carry disowned parts for us. Once this happens, we usually desire a different kind of partnership that is based on love, respect, playfulness, and a mutual desire to enjoy life. There is little, if any, drama as both partners take responsibility for their own experience. Initially, we may not feel the dramatic “pull” to new partners that was characteristic of being drawn to somebody out of karma. Instead, we feel a curiosity or a deep “yes” when meeting a possible new partner.
            There are no more rules. Partnership has been traditionally accepted as a marriage between a heterosexual man and heterosexual woman who commit to being monogamous for life. In the new energy, this becomes just one type of partnership. When we own all parts of ourselves, we no longer feel a need to prescribe to social norms just because we are told to do so. New energy partnerships may be heterosexual, homosexual, and everything in between. They may be monogamous, or open. They may not even be between two people but rather groups of people as is characteristic of polyamory. It is possible that a new energy relationship does not involve another person whatsoever but rather the deep relationship with Self. There are no rules whatsoever in the new energy. What matters is that both (or all) partners are fully conscious of what they are entering into. Honesty and transparency become essential ingredients in new energy relationships. In addition, both or all partners have to take responsibility for what they need and make it known. This takes a tremendous amount of self-awareness as we are usually not aware of what we need until we are not getting it.
            New energy relationships begin when we are so in love with ourselves that we no longer need another to make us feel complete. At this point, we are self-sustaining bundles of joy and love and we can enter into partnership not based on wounding, but rather expansion of joy. New energy partnerships are characterized by a feeling of freedom, openness, joy, love, and companionship. They are not heavy or draining, but rather uplifting and light.
            Getting to a place of being so complete that you can enter into a new energy relationship isn’t necessarily easy, but the rewards are worth it. It often demands a great deal of self-work as you face your own demons, aspects, and beliefs that you need someone outside of you to feel complete. This work is not for the faint of heart but rather brave of heart. Only once we are in love with ALL that we are can we join with another in a way that truly celebrates love.