Mental health, Spirituality

To love is to live

My dear readers, have you ever woke up to a certain song stuck in your head? I did this morning and the way my mind works I’m always so curious as to where it came from. I grew up with my mother playing a lot of John Denver and American folk music in our house. The song that popped in and kept replaying was “Annie’s song”. That’s still one of my Mother’s favorites and I must admit mine too. Whenever I hear it I want to run through a brighly colored meadow or hike up a mountain. The whimsical visions that are sparked in my mind are so clearly an ode to love and nature. Lately, it’s a love affair with myself and my new found self love Imthat I’m so interested in exploring. I envision myself holding hands with my younger self running through that meadow and the look on the face of that little girl inside me.

Life has a way within its ebbs and flow to present me with what I need to consider more of and work on when it cones to either delving deeper into shadow work or exploring more and caring for my inner child. Lately, it’s the latter I have been being reminded of. I’m not sure if I have published my real name yet on this blog but it’s Maria. My full given birth name is Maria Teresa Pratico. Little Maria has been begging for my attention lately and wants to be nurtured. My legal last name is Swanson and I chose to not change that when I went through my divorce because I wanted my boys to see us as still being a family. Now i choose to use my maiden name because it resonates more within me. The Swanson in me was a robotic force and Pratico is more of my true identity.

After the realization I had in June of the abuse that I suffered it’s like a whole new part of me has been awakened and is demanding my attention. I must tell you my dear readers, my own years of therapy, the countless books and articles I have read on processing emotions has taught me that when our feelings are not properly realized and our emotional moods go unexpressed, over time it creates a real issue that just continues to hold us more and more captive. This is especially true when it comes to trauma, the more we stuff and repress the harder and heavier our bodies get holding onto that energy. That’s what having sessions of EMDR (eye movement desensitization and reprocessing) therapy has helped me to release. However, there are other ways my inner child wants to be recognized and reparented in order to fully integrate her into my body. In his book, “The body keeps the score,” Bessel van der Kolk writes about unresolved trauma from a neuroscience perspective and explains why traumatized people experience incomprehensible anxiety, inexplicable numbing and intolerable rage, and how trauma impacts concentration, memory, and the ability to form trusting relationships. These are symptoms that our bodies display because it’s been holding onto that energy, trapped in our body.

For so much of my life, I operated in an auto-pilot unconscious state of being. Now it feels like I was almost two separate people. The me before and the me now. I wasn’t awake, I lacked self love, self confidence, I doubted myself in almost every situation and really I can admit I wasn’t really living! I held myself back so much by choosing to focus more on other people’s feelings and emotions, their problems in hopes that if I could fix them I would be loved. Now I know that the only person who can give me the full attention, fulfillment and happiness I crave is me. It’s not an external process and doesn’t come from material things. I feel like I’m really living and in doing so I am living out loud, unapologetically and on purpose. Speaking my mind and my truth in my loudest voice whether or not it makes some people uncomfortable and disagree with me…all of it! If you don’t like it, look away and step out of my way because nobody will become my next excuse for not taking care of myself or stopping me now. At 42 years old, I have stifled myself for far too long and it’s my time to shine!

With it being a new year and a brand new decade, I made a promise with myself to do the things that made me uncomfortable. Right now this includes getting more and more comfortable with uncomforbility. I started recording video confessionals on my social media that I call, Maria’s Musings. I’ve never been a fan of myself in pictures and video because I’m so critical of my looks and my voice. No more!! I even record myself without makeup, dressed in my pajamas or workout clothes. It’s me being me and loving myself every step of the way. You can find me on Instagram @emotionalmusings. I checked off a goal on my vision board too by doing my first poetry slam over the weekend. I performed my poem, “Glimpses” which is a tribute to my dear Nana who is now one of my spirit guides who appears to me as a butterfly🦋

“Glimpses”
For my Nana

The new me has confused some people in my world and one person in particular is my partner. He gets upset with my new and total focus on myself at times because he is so used to me putting others, like him first. This has created a lot of friction between us. In the last five months we have argued more than the last six and a half years of our entire relationship together! I have disclosed in previous posts that he is also someone living with severe mental illness stemming from traumatic brain injuries and the many concussions he sustained while playing professional football.

https://www.dallasobserver.com/news/lincoln-coleman-former-cowboys-running-back-struggles-with-effects-of-head-trauma-10983207

Another harsh reality he faces are the facts that have been well publicized about the connection between traumatic brain injuries and CTE (chronic traumatic encephalopathy)which is a neurodegenerative disease caused by repeated head injuries. The symptoms may include behavioral problems, mood problems, and problems with thinking. These symptoms typically do not begin until years after the injuries. CTE often gets worse over time and can result in dementia.

It’s creates quite a challenge for him as he has watched many players die or commit suicide by shooting themselves in the heart so that their brains can be studied. Recently, he lost another player to suicide and when he told me, the look in his eyes rattled me to my core in a very deep way. Our connection and bond is so strong and to think of losing him in anyway but especially in that way terrifies me! Then I start examining everything he is doing and saying in a more critical way. The empath in me has had to learn how to actively block him so I don’t get caught up in his energy and thoughts.

Lately, it’s all been too much for me and my own regularly shifting fast moving energy collided and had in a way a head on collision with his energy and BAM! Making life decisions based in fear is never a good idea and results in undesirable outcomes. It’s my nature to love and accept others. That must include both myself currently and his reality too. All of that became entirely too much to handle last week. We had a bad blowout that resulted in both of us saying things we didn’t mean and I ended our relationship.

I also allowed this overly active fear and emotional state to spill over into my job as a manager for a dear friend of mine’s boutique. Without going into details, I did something that I shouldn’t have that could of put the business in jeopardy. My emotional state had me not thinking straight when I made this mistake. Then I went further into crash and burn mode by telling her I was quitting and gave my two weeks notice abruptly and without any warning which hurt my girlfriend’s feelings badly. I know now what I did could’ve had irreparable damage to their livelihood and our great friendship. Taking stock of the situation took some serious sole searching on my part. The will to listen and quiet my own fears so that I wasn’t acting so selfishly and considered all sides of the situation. I’m praying for a positive outcome to my apology.

Living in fear is like being backed into a corner, triggering me to feel scared, helplessness and confused just as I did during the abuse I suffered. As I continue to heal, these parts of me are lying dangerously close to the surface and my own current reality. They at times become twisted up and entangled in a way that clouds my decision making and has me wanting to escape. This is by no means an excuse, it’s my reality and I’m addressing it head on.

I want to share with you dear readers the importance of addressing what you need to in life because we only get one shot at living. Life is precious and short. I’m someone who wanted to pull the plug by cutting my own short because living was so painful and I felt the only way out was death. A permanent solution to a temporary problem. Learning to love myself and having the ability to love another person, despite terrifying circumstances shows strength, resilience and most of all courage. Summoning that courage took the abity for me to use pain as a motivator not as a roadblock. I admit, I don’t always make clearheaded decisions concerning my life. I have the tendency to want to blow up my life and throw the towel in and say FUCK IT ALL!

Not giving into these urges is hard for me because my natural tendency has been conditioned to not focus on my own uncomfortable or challenging feelings of fear, anger and sadness. I stuff, numb and dissociate from them just like I did in childhood during the abuse. It was easier to put my mind in another place and numb out. It’s our bodies defense, protecting our brains from the highest levels of anxiety and circuit overload. I now know this coping mechanism no longer serves me and I must change that maladaptive pattern before it continues to wreck havoc in my world today.  Following inner compass suits my life and decision making much better!

Choosing to love and remain in love is hard during these fearful moments but if I want to live, I must love. I have also been programmed to find pleasure in pain. I have been noticing that when typing a lot I tend to type live instead of love. That’s what sparked me to start investigating this vital connection between loving and living. In order for me to consistently maintain my happiness, I must choose to love in order to keep living. The abuse is over. The little girl who experienced that rauma is grown. I have learned a better way to live. I can make better choices. When I fall down and make the same mistakes my from past, I can now recognize them and correct them by taking responsibility for my words and actions by choosing to not blow up my life. If it’s one thing I have learned it’s that the grass is never greener.

I choose to accept my partner’s prognosis and conditions because when taking stock of the pros and cons of our relationship, the pros undoubtedly outweigh the cons. More on that in upcoming posts my dear readers. Once I can snap myself back into my body, I can easily recognize this. When I was high in emotion mind, I wrote this poem. Thankfully for me writing is such a great outlet. One I need to rely upon more so I don’t actively allow fear into the driver’s seat unnecessarily.

Spirituality

Consciously blocking fear

This has been a tremendous past week for me my dear readers!! I have received so many messages from the Universe validating the path I’m currently on which is the journey back to the authentic spirit I embody within this human vessel. In a nutshell, I have raised my vibration to the point where I’ve shifted into such love and abundance while actively blocking out fear. If you read a newspaper or watch the news, however you get your information, there are events happening in our world that have many speculating if we are of the verge of WW3. What these events like the wildfires in Australia and the US killing Qasem Suleimani one of Iran’s top generals me is to not allow fear to get it’s claws into my psyche.

I’m uber focused on not allowing myself to be brought down by fear. Everything is energy so when we engage fear we are ultimately feeding it. I chose to feed love by investing my energy into making myself the best human being I can be, knowing myself as well as I can. For me, it’s about management of my time and what I’m feeding myself. You are what you feed your mind and body. Period.

I must serve myself and heal myself first so I can live my soul’s purpose which is of spreading love and kindness to everyone I meet. We need more random acts of kindness and empathy for our fellow sisters and brothers. We are all connected, everything alive on this planet has an affect on each other. When you start to really see the world we live in in this way, you want to make choices from love and abandon fear.

I recently watched a YouTube video by one of my favorite YouTube stars, Ralph Smart aka Infinite Waters. He calls his followers Deep Divers because we dive into different subjects going below the surface and appearance. He is a beacon of light and hope sharing advice on how to make yourself more self aware, be a better person, gain consciousness etc….you get the point as to why I follow him closely😉 One of the connections he draws upon highlighted within the video below is that our society is feeding fear by ingesting animals. The killing of animals during food production creates fear and pain for them. By ingesting that meat, now you have transferred that energy into your own body. Think about it. That one blew me away.

While I’m on the subject of YouTube stars, another amazing woman I follow closely is Dr. Nicole Pera aka The Holistic Psychologist. I stumbled upon her Instagram page through one of the soul sisters I follow on Instagram. She’s revolutionizing the field of mental health by focusing on what the root cause is for so many illnesses, disorders and conditions. Every day she posts advice on how to undo the programming and conditioning we as a society go through when we are growing up. The steps she lays out make it crystal clear on how to become more self aware, live more consciously and make better decisions surrounding our choices and behaviors. Her guidance has helped me in countless ways! She’s a tool in my ever evolving tool belt of self healing information.

Today she posted about unraveling the conditioning we go through, specifically the letting go of the habit of self. Many professionals in the field describe “self” as personality but really it is the expieriences we live through that creates this aspect of ourselves. This is ego, unconsciousness, operating throughout life on auto pilot, living in the past and it doesn’t serve us well at all. Here is the link to her YouTube video.

Become an observer my dear readers and understand that the first step in obtaining peace in this world is to start within yourself. Working on the inside will eventually transform the outside world around us. Ralph and Nicole have very similar messages. Their work and content focus around discovering our authentic self which is what our spirit, what our soul tells us. This is our intuition. The longer we operate from fear, the more silent that inner voice becomes. I’m talking about our intuition. Some end up never even acknowledging it at all let alone trusting it.

For most of my life, I was living in a constant and perpetual state of fear and anxiety. I didn’t feel good enough, I distrusted my inner guide and went about creating false stories, ego stories, that screamed at me that I was a failure. Since working so diligently on raising my own vibration, becoming a realized and empowered empath all that has vanished.

The creation of daily morning rituals helps me to care for my spirit by allowing me to finally feel my worth. Meditating regularly has allowed me to become an observer to my obsessive and compulsive thoughts surrounding anxiety and depression. I can choose what I act upon, what is real for me. Journaling is a great way to unload my mind and stay in the present. I pick up on so much dear readers, being constantly sent messages about the others around me whether I like it or not. It can really weigh me down if I let it.

Becoming aware of synchronicity is one of the signs of a spiritual awakening and definitely one of the coolest parts of my journey thus far. I have praised my dear soul sister Lindsey Luna aka soul.healing.with.luna on Instagram a few times in my posts. She is an amazingly talented shamanic healer and Reiki master. A few weeks ago she posted her chakra healing crystal set in an Instagram story and I was immediately smitten with them! I quickly messaged her and asked her where she found them. The neat thing about us empaths is that we are so in tune with each other, she knew I would ask her! On Saturday they arrived to my pleasant surprise about an hour after I posted about allowing soul power to flow freely. Not a coincidence, there is no such thing my dear readers 😊

I opened the box and gazed lovingly upon my new crystal beauties. I took three deep breaths as I held each chakra point crystal in my hand while setting an intention our loud. I burned some sage to cleanse them too from any negative charges they may be carrying. The fact that Lindsey picked them out, touched them and transferred her own positive energy into them is very special to me. I then lay them upon each of my chakra points while listening to her guided meditation. I can’t fully express the euphoric feeling I immediately recieved from these healing crystals!! When I was finished and was putting them away each crystal was quite hot to my touch. I felt like I was floating on a cloud for the rest of the day!

The last bit of news I will leave you with is that I expierenced my second vision!! It was so awe inspiring and glorious leaving me with tears streaming down my face🤗 I started using a brain waves frequency app for background tones while I meditate. I was sitting outside in my backyard just gazing at the sun through the trees. All of a sudden I could see the energy waves in the air. This isn’t the 1st time I have seen them but what was different is the appearance of the sun. I saw a big purple heart. At first there were three circle like shapes and then those morphed into a heart. This keep happening over and over while I just stared in awe. An overwhelming feeling of calm came rushing over my body from head to toe.

Witnessing such a vision is a clear message to me from Universe that everything will be alright. Purple is not only my favorite color but when I saw my guardian angel during my first vision, she was bathed in purple light. Universe really knows how to quickly get my attention!

About twenty minutes after that experience I went back inside to journal about it and write the following poem💜🌈🌠✌🙏😊

Spirituality

An end of year gift to myself

Here we are my dear readers, the final days of 2019. We made it through another year and decade. We’re in a new moon and eclipse cycle too which has my energy vibes feeling a sense of overall calm, a tiredness has settled into my entire being. A few days ago I wrote a poem about the greatest gift to myself and how much it means to me to be uncovering my true and authentic self. It’s the most wonderful, beautiful and precious experience of my life.

It certainly has not come easy or free! Since June, as you know if you have been following my blog here, I have been on an accelerated spiritual journey. It required a tremendous amount of patience and grace on my part. Integrating my shadow self, the aspects of my character that are darker, the ones I don’t like to admit led me to places I never dreamed I would be. Ultimately accepting every ounce of what makes me me has taught me so much. I finally see my worth, understand my value and strive each day to care for my spirit by practicing daily rituals that strengthen the bond I have with myself.

Over this past weekend, I stumbled upon a website where I could map together my complete birth chart. Cafeastrology.com gives a very detailed and informative view of where the sun, moon and planets were positioned the day you were born. It took me two days to read it and summarize it into my journal. The descriptions of my characteristics( inborn, undeveloped and overdeveloped) impressions I leave upon others, my communication style, habits and reactions to the world, whom I attract, my values within different situations are all connected to my chart. I learned so much about myself and was validated on many fronts it was uncanny! Certain paragraphs I had to reread twice, even three times because they blew me away so much.

The picture above raises interesting questions. I feel that there are certain character challenges that are unavoidable while some information I read I could definitely connect with in a way that is constructive to my growth. For example, I was born a highly sensitive, even moody at times individual. Most empaths moods can change so rapidly leaving others around them quite puzzled as to why. The sensitivity I am most especially affected by is the relation to my environment. I am extremely sensitive to it due to my heightened senses. If something smells off, I am distracted, often bothered and have difficulty focusing. If sounds are too loud, I am immediately in fight, flight or freeze mode. I believe no matter how much I work on myself these physiological aspects of my being wouldn’t change. I believe them to be hard wired.

However, I do take heed to the suggestions within my reactions to others. For example, I rely too heavily upon myself. I like to be independent and this streak is defined in every description throughout my chart from my sun and moon signs, both are Sagittarius by the way(many of the planets were in Sagittarius for me making me a super Sagittarius)to Saturn in Virgo and Uranus in Scorpio position. All define my intense desire to keep others out of my inner drive to get things done. My North Node in Libra and in my 4th house says that I take on the management role of fixing problems like a second nature although if I let others in, I can improve my life many times over. This is definitely something I can attest too being true. Initially, I want to handle everything on my own, have all the answers etc. Life has proven to me that when I reach out and ask for help, the load I’m carrying whether physical, emotional or spiritual gets much lighter.

I believe learning the most I can about myself by becoming as aware of myself as possible, the better I can care for myself in the world and within my relationships with others. I have always had a feverish curiosity for knowledge and understanding. I’m a gentle, generous and emotionally sensitive person who is practical in my values and fairness with others. I tend to be independent and want my freedom. I get restless when I feel I must conform to others ideals or am around others with inhibitions forced upon me. I am a very free spirit who likes to think and figure things out myself in my own unique way. I can come across as slow and methodical with my language and writing when I am taking on too much information. I need to process things conpartmentally at times in order to derive meaning from it because I’m highly philosophical.

All of this information has taught me how to handle my problems, mood shifts and emotions when dealing with others as an empath. I have always tended to get more involved with other’s feelings rather than feel and pay attention to my own. I believe I’m shifting this tendency. Even my partner can see a difference in me in how he and I interact. I think it’s hard for him because he doesn’t want to feel left out or left behind because of my growth. I assure him that my personal journey is necessary for my spirit and purpose during this journey to continue. It’s nothing to be feared or worry about but a beautiful and everlasting gift to myself.

I have often done just this. Feeling “too much” for others to handle because of my passionate views, the intensity of emotions I display and brutal honesty. Sometimes I can definitely put my foot in my mouth and say things with little or no tact. Being born and raised in New Jersey while residing in the South has elicited comments from others about my brashness and abruptness which leave a negative connotation in my mind. Attempts to stifle or cover these traits never works or feels genuine to me. I only end up hurting myself and that is something I’m finally finished doing!

What I have learned is to embrace it ALL. I refuse to hamper down who I am for anybody. I have lived through and endured so much pain and heartache that experiencing this revitalization of my spirit feels like flying. I alone decide how high I will soar, who I will let into my inner circle of loved ones and damn all the rest. This is me, in my truest and most genuine form. I love me today and that is something I pretended to feel for entirely too long for the sake of others. No longer will I allow the thoughts, opinions and actions of others to cloud my self expression.

I’m ready to kiss 2019 goodbye with a deep felt gratitude for all the lessons I have gathered this year. I have a clear picture of my future in 2020 and beyond that is of me owning my female empath warrior strength in an even more empowered and realized way so that I may shine as brightly as our life giving Sun 🌞

Mental health, Spirituality

Intentions for an open heart

When in doubt follow your heart. That mantra has been my focal point all of my life. As the empathetic, passionate and free spirited woman I am following my heart’s desire has always felt right to me. In the years since I have been healing myself from trauma however, there were many times where I would tell my partner that I felt a disconnection between my heart and my mind. I can recall a specific time four years ago when that realization made me so sad and confused. Unraveling trauma, pain stuck in my body has taken time and required me to simply be patient with myself.

I have loads of patience for others yet I tend to be more harshly impatient with my own progress in this area. The integration between my heart and soul while processing my own emotions surrounding trauma has taught me that I can’t force anything to happen. Creating a false sense of security by telling myself that it’s not that upsetting or lying to myself that “I’m ok” only furthered the process. The sentiment of “time takes time” just came to mind. I’m thankful I surrendered to the process and showed myself grace. It’s yielded tremendous growth for my spirituality and awakening journey!

Another opportunity presented itself recently in regards to allowing my heart to remain open, just feeling the feelings, without intellectualizing them and over explaining them. I was made aware of the fact that I tend to do this. It’s an old coping skill I developed in order for me to feel safe in my body, feeling everything and everybody all at once. As an empath, for so long before I realized it was detrimental to my own well being, I have tended more to others feelings while stuffing or numbing my own away. My fast moving energy creates BIG intense feeling sensations in my body and I was fearful of them.

After reflecting on why I have done this throughout my life, understanding that it’s no longer necessary and shifting into open heartedness requires me to evoke that same level of patience with myself. I have noticed that when I start to digress into old behaviors and patterns my posture changes. I cross my arms and hug my body, slouching my shoulders, I don’t stand with my head held as high. Being aware of how this overwhelming and uncomfortable feeling actually feels in my body allows me an opportunity to grow. In the past, I would allow this low vibrational fear to consume me. Now, operating from a place of love which is a higher vibration, I feel more empowered to overcome that fear. Sitting with it, tending to my own emotional response has proven to be so powerful!

I recently learned how to quickly reconnect with my heart and my soul’s power by clearing my central channel. I rub my hands together creating energy and hold then in front of my pelvic/hip region. Then I raise them up over my body slowly while visualizing releasing any stagnant energy that may be blocking me from my power. Once I get to my heart I stop and shake my hands off as though they were wet. I practiced this the other day while staring at myself in the mirror. The intense feelings I got, the rush of self love made me feel happy and warm all over.

I’m using my power and gifts of sense mastery to heal myself! It’s incredibly empowering my dear readers. This is new ground for me. Becoming the master of my emotions and the creator of my reality is a shift I had no idea would change how I see everything in my world. Forever, my feelings and other’s have run my life in a negative and harmful way. I didn’t know how to sort it all out and I have gone through forgiving myself for not knowing how best to care for myself.

I believe that the way I was treating myself, misunderstanding how best to care for my spirit left me with a deep sadness that I have carried for a long, long time. When someone would ask me, “what’s wrong” it was often difficult to articulate exactly why but now I know it was this heaviness dragging my down creating sadness and eventually pain. Like a broken heart. I was unaware of how it was affecting my life. Now that I’m on the other side of it I know I have found the key to eternal happiness.

Happiness isn’t something you can get from external sources my dear readers. It must be cultivated from within. God has created us with everything we need for balance and peace within our own amazing bodies! I used to feel my heart was failing me because I felt too much and that my brain was attacking me because my thoughts ran so quickly through my mind. It was a terrible, victim like perception I was inflicting upon myself. I now see that I had the power all along to change and feel better. By taking care of my emotional and spiritual needs on a daily basis I have established a strong bond within myself. I make the promise with myself every day to never go back to my old ways. I release the worry and fear surrounding the entire thought I even would.

This new year 2020 feels like it’s going to be my brightest year yet🌠🌈🎇🙏❤

Spirituality

Shedding my skin, answering the call

We have officially entered this last month of 2019 my dear readers. I awoke this morning with lots of words swirling around my head which for this creative soul means a poem is about to come through. I have always relied upon writing to express my feelings and emotions. In this past year I have relied heavily upon creating poems to articulate my own life’s observations and experiences. Today one word kept popping up over and over again, bones.

In the past six months, as you my dear readers know, I have had an accelerated growth period within the spiritual awakening I now find myself in. This process has allowed me to shed so many old coping habits, mindsets and behaviors that no longer serve my highest self. That’s what I’m very focused on in life, what works and what doesn’t.

I’m an empath that has incredibly fast moving energy. I absorb it like a sponge through my pores. I liken my thoughts to a spinning rolodex. When a poem is forming in my mind, I see the words written across a kind of white board as a vision. They come together quickly and don’t take much effort on my part at all. The phrase that kept repeating in my mind this morning was, make no bones about it. As usual, I googled it for the exact definition:

To Make No Bones About Something. Meaning: To say clearly what you think or feel about something, however unpleasant or awkward it. To make no bones about something means to say something in a way that leaves no doubt, or to have no objection to it.

This makes perfect sense to me. First of all, I am honest to a fault. Being both an empath and a Sagittarius, at times my words spill out bluntly with little or no tact to my delivery. I speak my mind and my truth as i always have. I know this is one of the traits my fiance adores the most in me. He knows when he asks me my opinion on something, he always gets the truth! I can further relate to this phrase very much while I make this shift, shedding outdated ways to deal with life like a repitle sheds it’s old skin to make way for a new one. Snakes and lizards do this to allow for growth and to remove parasites that have attached themselves to their old skin. Again, this too I can relate to. I’m always growing and evolving, getting rid of aspects within my life that have become a drain upon me. A parasite sucks the nutrients it needs to live and feeds off of its host.

Before I started this deep inner work, I can admit to allowing others to feed off of my energy. Family, friends even co-workers would become very draining for me to handle and that was detrimental to my own well being. I have always had a very high tolerance and patience for drama therefore in my past I made decisions within my relationships that were in hindsight not the best for my life long term. That was then, this is now.

Like that animal who sheds its skin in order to allow for growth and a cleansing of the blood sucking, leech like organisms, I too am ridding myself of the pests in my life by letting go. Getting down to my bare bones. Building a newer and more solid foundation for my authentic self to blossom within. My spirit deserves to breathe free and fly to where the winds of change my take me. An emotional and mental cleansing that is happening at a rapid pace to keep up with my intentions and manifestations.

Recently I had a video chat with a fellow female empath that was so inspiring and validating to my soul! She was so open and kind by complimenting me on my inner strength and realized powerful spirit. It made me blush at first honestly because I’m new to fully accepting compliments. She told me to shine like the queen’s essence I embody. After we said our goodbyes, her words were still in my mind. I looked at myself in the mirror and I told myself, “Maria, this is your time to shine and if others can’t handle it or find fault in your new found confidence, tell them to put on sunglasses!”

I’m at the stage in my life where I can see the big picture clearly. Speaking of glasses, I feel like I just got a new pair! All the questions and curiosity’s about life that I have had up to this point are all being answered revealing my path’s purpose. I am here to listen, share, heal and inspire others who feel lost, marginalized or forgotten. I know that feeling all too well and I won’t allow anybody I come across to feel that kind of severe hopelessness and worthlessness. I have walked in those ratty, torn up shoes of despair too and I will do whatever I can to lend a hand or a smile to those in need. A disrupter in life that fights against hate and evil to shine a light of empathy and compassion for those that need it. It’s in my bones. It’s my calling and I am answering it wholeheartedly and determined to make a difference.

Spirituality

Channeling my inner goddess of empowerment

Happy New Moon my dear readers. This is the second to last new moon of 2019. Since I’m a Sagittarius and will be turning 42 in two weeks, it’s that time of year when I reflect upon my past year. It’s hard to believe we are at the end of another year but even more astounding is thinking about the end of this decade. I recently got involved in a social media challenge to celebrate saying goodbye to 2010-2019 by posting a picture of myself from 2010 and one from now. It’s the time of year I get uber nostalgic by looking at old pictures, rereading my journals and cleaning out my closet.

Me at my 1st road race 7/4/10 in NJ

Me at the boutique I manage here in downtown, TX last week.

This decade has seen the ending of many important events in my life. I got separated and divorced from my ex-husband which was a huge catalyst for many intense and much needed changes in my life. I moved around more times than I can count or care to acknowledge in this decade, changing my address, even the states I reside in. I started this decade in Rhode Island where my ex-husband’s from, then I moved to Florida where I met my fiance and we relocated three years ago here to Dallas, Texas. Just the change of region within our great country has been quite an adjustment for me to say the least. My fiance’s Mom likes to call me a Damn Yankee. It’s a term of endearment coming from her which means I’m from the North, a Yankee, I moved to the South and stayed becoming a Damn Yankee 🤣

During these past ten years I took a deep dive, plunging head first into my own mental health by beginning my spiritual journey and awakening after a suicide attempt in 2011. Hindsight is always 20/20 and boy oh boy has this been a long, painful, challenging, beautiful and awe inspiring experience. I spent an entire year going from inpatient to outpatient and back again in a private psychiatric hospital where I learned life lessons that taught me so much about myself for an entire year! That hospital became a big support system for me for a few years, 2011 to 2013 exactly, while I began healing from the many traumas I have endured. At times I remember feeling really ashamed about needing to return so often to which my doctor replied, you are learning and require repetition, there is nothing to feel badly about.

Thinking about the woman I was then, very broken and fragmented, a shell of who I have grown into today is like reflecting upon the weather. That time feels like there was always a raging thunderstorm brewing creating hurricanes that at times became blistering winds knocking me to my knee and forcing me to crawl. This last year especially as felt like finally seeing the sun peak out from behind those dark clouds turning my gray skies into a clear and brightly colored blue hue accompanied by a peach colored warm sun.

As a child I loved to lay on the ground and watch the clouds dance across the sky. My sister, our friends and I used to shout out whatever shapes we thought we saw up there in their white puffiness. At times I feel like I am living a dream that I could’ve created out of those clouds.

Recently I have decided to stop apologizing for my inner strength and personal power while I shine brightly like a 1,000 watt bulb. While speaking to a dear girlfriend yesterday, I told her this and added that if others take issue with this, they ought to put on some sunglasses. This is my time. Period. 😎

It’s virtuous to think of others before yourself but for my entire life I did this to the detriment of myself. I held myself back and focused all of my energy on others. I first did this with family members. I’m a middle child and being born the fifth child out of the six my parents share together provided a great opportunity of how to get along with others. Then I got married and had my two boys. Needless to say, their needs took precedence over my own and I was obliging to that.

I believe I did this in search of unconditional love and acceptance that I truly never felt I could ever receive or be worthy of from others as a highly sensitive person, an INFJ personality and an empath. For my entire life, I have always felt different, awkward and not a part of. Some people are called the black sheep of their family. My Mom can tell you I definitely marched to the bear if my own drum! What I have come to discover is that ME and only ME can love myself in that way. I wrote in a previous post that only Maria can take the best care of Maria.

Awakening to a higher level of consciousness recently has taught me to name and recognize where my thoughts are coming from. For instance, when I’m having ego centered thinking, that is my psyche trying to keep me small and protected. When I’m thinking as my wounded inner child, my thoughts are centered around needs that weren’t met as a child. These mindsets are often triggered or tripped like a wire attempting to throw me off my peaceful voyage through life. When I am putting some space between these mindsets I can recognize and acknowledge my true and authentic self, my original spirit. I feel more ME than I ever have before because I’m integrating my fragmented self. The parts of me that I clung to for protection and safety. I truly am a multidimensional spirit having a uniquely human experience!

All of this being explained, I awoke earlier than usual on Monday morning. Mondays are my days off and I was wondering why I was up so early, being so alert and awake, but something was pulling me. I put on one of my guided meditations and started free flow journaling. As my thoughts were coming together and I was feverishly writing, I had a thought to look up the different goddesses of empowerment.

I found myself being drawn to a blog post that described these 7 goddesses in detail. The first one struck me with such an intensity, I reread the passage three times before I decided to write it down. Immediately it made perfect sense to me why I was up before I usually am.

The more I read about the Egyptian goddess Isis, the more I felt myself channeling her spirit. She is known for her ability to transmute bad situations into good ones. According to mythology, Isis is the queen of the sky, Earth and moon by being the most enigmatic of the goddesses who embodies the female psyche as she has for thousands of years. As with any of the female deities, her strengths are motherhood, fertility and nurturing yet her main areas of expertise are in the areas of magic and healing.

Isis has an incredibly intense determination and excels most at alchemy. She is said to have served as the template for all other female deities around the world across cultures and religions. Most importantly she embodies the power of alchemical transformation. As the goddess of magic, she teaches us how to use our own unique gifts to create the life we desire. She also serves as an agent of change. By channeling her through my spirit, I am learning to use my ability to show unconditional kindness and love to others to abolish negative energy.

Her influential energy as been circling within me for some time now I believe. This most recent transformation is due to a Kundalini energy release. Kundalini is your life force energy. It’s believed that in those who are unawakened, their energy remains coiled at the base of their spine. For those who have an awakening event like me, we become conscious and that energy spirals upward, activating each chakra leading me to enlightenment.

That is where I believe I am at right now in my evolvement dear readers. Part of my soul’s purpose is to transmute negative energy into positive by using my powers of kindness, understanding and unconditional love for all who cross my path. This is a task and duty I humbly take on with a gracious commitment to create a life beyond my wildest dreams not only for me but for those around me. This is what I believe we empaths and light workers were sent here to continue to do. We are the seekers, the leaders pointing to the path by example of the way we naturally interact with others. It’s a blessing to be able to go forth with purity of heart and conviction for making this a better world for all to coexist in together. We are all connected. Life is truly a beautiful gift🌍❤✌🌠🌈😊

Spirituality

Marrying my soul

Since my last post I have been flooded with messages from higher consciousness or my higher self. The more I notice the synchronicity within the patterns and messaging from Source, the more aware of my inner spirit I become. Two major ideas have begun sprouting and taking root within me. As painful as this spiritual awakening can be at times, making these important connections is really adding glorious colors to my soul’s spectrum. Hold tight dear readers because this post is about to blow your minds, follow along if you dare….

About a week ago I started thinking about the idea of what elevating to the 5D or 5th Dimension is all about. Sure enough, while going through that same day I was sent information about that very topic in multiple ways. That is how the Universe communicates with me, in the physical world. I ask a question and without fail, I am always sent my answers. I watched an informational video by a YouTube and Instagram star I follow by the name of Ralph Smart, his spirit’s name is Infinite Waters. He calls his followers.like me, deep divers because are seeking answers to that which is below the surface. As you may or may not by know by now my dear readers, that is my favorite place to dwell and where you can most often find me 😉

Anyway, he posted a video about how to know if you have entered the 5D. Let me explain to you my dear readers what the difference is between 3D and 5D and the different levels of awareness within the 5D world.

First off, the 3D world is the physical world we live in and is fear based and focused around material. The fear around losing the materials we acquire is the ruling force. Think, Madonna’s “Material Girl”. Within this idea comes a concentration for obtaining money and power. We don’t trust others because we fear they might take our material, money and power away. Those existing within this dimension define themselves solely by their position within this power plane and what they do for a living. Believing that basically, the more you have the happier and more fulfilled you will be. Their beliefs are centered around separation from God or Source, the existence of a singular life and death is something painful, all finite and to be feared. This life within the 3d is one big competition with only winners and losers. People existing within the 3D believe there are only certain roles for men and women. Men hold positions of power, nurturing that strength to become the fighters. Woman are seen as the weak caretakers only.

In regards to relationships within the 3D, they believe one cannot be whole without another person. They believe one needs someone else in order to be happy and whole. They are so used to ego centered thinking and there is no questioning of it. Only seeing rare moments of beauty in nature or in an orgasm because these moments bring them into the NOW or present. Otherwise, in my humble opinion, living as drones or robots within this Matrix like society. Their minds play games based around would of, should of and could of which can only focus on the past or they are busy creating future scenarios centering around hypotheticals to prepare themselves for the future. All of this thinking is a futile process and waste of precious energy, in my opinion. Humans living in the 3D crave sex because it’s the only time that both masculine and feminine energies can coexist in a perfect balance within each other.

What’s more is that in the 3D, people are seen as separate from God and that duality doesn’t exist. There are only coincidences and no such thing as destiny. We have amnesia really, we have forgotten the spiritual beings we are within the physical form we occupy. We take on the ego mind and with that adoption, we have egocentric thinking. Nobody questions this and those that do are seen as weird or crazy. Ultimately they must be wrong because there is no upsetting this Matrix.

Upon entering the 5D, one feels more and more comfortable about just who they really are, reclaiming their authentic selves as it relates to who they are truly born to be, original spirit is getting reintegrated into our physical body creating a feeling of oneness with everything within the physical world. An absolute understanding that we are all connected, animals, humans, nature….EVERYTHING! Moving past light and darkness and good and bad, our integration into the 5D allows us to see the necessity of it all. Everything is more than it seems suddenly.

I myself began this journey or quest to discover my authentic self with my voice trembling and shaking. When I started questioning everything I have been told to believe, there was a lot of pushback and pain. I felt I was misunderstood, not worthy and not enough. Those of us raising our awareness and consciousness are seen as weird and crazy. We are remembering our soul’s purpose as our heart begins to open. The scarcity mindset is turned on its head in favor of an abundance one. In the 3D we have to be consumers who strive to own more and more. Consumption upon the material is seen as not only better but necessary for happiness.

In contrast, those of us moving into the 5D have started to understand that everything we need to be whole and happy is already within us. I have begun to feel powerful by understanding that only I have the power to create my own reality. I’m no longer accepting what I have always been told because others have believed what they were told before me and on and on. No thank you, no more. I’m beginning to see myself as a multidimensional being having a human experience. Remembering too what the Budda himself has preached for centuries, attachment creates suffering. Letting go is the only way to obtain a real enlightenment state of being.

My energy centers, or chakra system has been open, balanced and allowed to flow seemingly which allows my authentic story to be told. My throat chakra is no longer blocked. Yes, and too my heart chakra is shifting into a more receiving state to allow what Source is providing me on a daily basis. I see that there is nothing but love inside of me and I can accept love more freely from others without judgement or doubt. Just like an artist, I am painting my world more vibrantly and with broader strokes of color.

The next level I am just beginning to experience is that of an energy alchemist. Being able to transform negative energy into positive energy is called transmuting. I practice this through meditation and visualization. The more attuned i can become into my energetic force, the easier this becomes. By no means is this process supposed to sound easy. On the contrary, it is hard and painful at times anrequires an open mind, body and soul along with tons of patience within this practice. I’m never going to be perfect as my spirit walks this Earth because I’m inhabiting a fallible human body.

I am telling you dear readers that I can actually feel this shift taking place within me. More on some days and less on others depending on what energies I have allowed into my field and what I have taken on. If I could exist in a complete Transcendental meditative state I would! Once there I am actively experiencing nothingness, no thoughts, no feelings….pure nothing. For me it’s like being in outer space where nothings ends and nothing starts, everything just is. A truly conscious state of being.

I have many of my meditation guru’s and consciousness guide’s words tumbling around in my mind about becoming a human being vs a human doing. In the 3D the only acceptable state is the latter. How much can I do in a day? How much can I achieve, obtain and win…just how much power will that give me? To me dear readers, this isn’t the sort of leveling up I have ever wanted to achieve.

I do however desire to level up within my own consciousness by vibrating at a higher frequency so that my human mind can accept what my spirit’s destiny truly is. I have to let go of what the 3D has drummed into my head which is don’t question anything and fear it all!! I must undue 41 years of brainwashing.

I have started to see myself as the hero in my story, not the victim of pain and suffering that i have felt for for years! That being stated, I am beginning to embrace that fact that the trauma, pain and suffering I have experienced thus far has molded me into a human who is willing and able to take on my soul’s purpose. My 3rd eye chakra, the energy center that contains our innermost knowing and has always been my guiding force is now the only voice I want to listen to. I have begun to actively block all the false messaging within the 3D so that my mind can make room for more awareness and spiritual information.

This process is arduous and exhausting because I am unlearning what my 3D self has accepted a long time ago. My thoughts, feelings and behaviors must ALL transform so that I can remain calm, fearless really in the face of extreme emotion and stress. I have to develop a supreme awareness so that my spirit can weather whatever storm I may find myself facing. This is 100% my own responsibility and no one else’s.

The next level I hope to obtain in time as Universe sees fit is that of a wizard who can truly be one with the Universe. No longer seeing a separation but instead having an unconditional love and complete acceptance of self. I must have already inhabited all three beings of drone, artist and alchemist, growing into a master. In this state I won’t sell out, my soul that is what I’m referring to, not ever. No matter what my choices are. I will only count my riches by my inner growth, understanding and knowing that is what truly matters, not what my bank account says. I will be completely 100% about my purpose void of distraction. Most especially, I will refuse to compare myself to anyone else. I will only sow seeds of positivity through my interactions with all others always.

This new understanding as lead me to the idea of wanting to marry my soul. Everyday I read a passage from a book entitled “The Book of Awakening ” by Mark Nepo. Mr. Nepo is a poet and spiritual adviser who has taught in the fields of poetry and spirituality for over 30 years. He is best known for his New York Times #1 bestseller, “The Book of Awakening”. He is a very respected philosopher who has endured and overcome cancer. I have been allowing him to guide my days by reading and rereading his book for about 5 years now.

Today being November 13th and also our full moon, I read about marrying one’s soul. He writes here that in order to live without silencing or numbing essential parts of who we are, we must make a vow to uphold a special promise to ourselves. Mine sounds something like this and I am paraphrasing Mr. Nepo’s beautiful prose here:

I, Maria Teresa Pratico, make the following promise to myself. I will do my best on a daily basis to stay committed to my inner path, not separating myself from that path when things get tough or confusing. I will always try to accept and embrace my faults and limitations by interweaving my spiritual life with my psychological life. Living my life by allowing my heart and soul to lead my mind where it may wonder. I vow to lead a life of faith and truth by fulfilling these virtues in the place of anxiety and doubt. By keeping this promise to myself I can build a solid foundation and bond my true spirit within this human vessel I now occupy making myself twice as strong. My goal in keeping this promise is to create a life that is doubly strong in this mad mad world I live in today❤

Here is a poem I wrote the other day keeping in this vein. Everyday, more and more I strive to observe more and speak less.