San Marcos, Guatemala
It has been a magical and transformative year in my life. My spiritual journey and progression has had a beautiful natural flow and I have been lucky enough to be guided and inspired by so many amazing people. Exactly one year ago, I completed my Reiki I and II certification which was a beautiful entrance into the power of energy work, but the catalyst of my spiritual journey was three years ago when my dear friend and mystical goddess, Nola Ganem introduced me to her teacher and cacao shaman, Keith Wilson. Cacao is the purest form of chocolate. As a known super food, it has many amazing health benefits but it is also a wonderful facilitator when used for inner work and connecting with a higher consciousness. Keith was called to share this powerful plant medicine and is now shipping his hand processed, 100% pure, raw Guatemalan cacao all over the world.
After 3 years of watching my own spiritual path unfold, I finally made it to Guatemala this past February to learn from Keith and as Nola says, "to go deep, to fly high". I went into this experience with the intent of traveling into my own consciousness and connecting with my highest, most authentic self. It was not a vacation but rather a journey into the depths of my soul.
Sarah Ban Breathnach says, "Only when the clamor of the outside world is silenced will you be able to hear the Deeper Vibrations... When there is Light we see remarkably well. We see with clarity. And what we see if we look deep within is that the authentic self is the Soul made visible." Once I stepped away from the world I knew, I was able to travel within and simply focus on lifting the density or darkness held in my soul, the kind of density we all carry. It is the traumas, emotional scars, and negative energy that we carry within our physical and spiritual body, and can only be lifted through Light or in other words, Love. It was not easy work and at one point I was violently ill, but the clarity, freedom and understanding that resulted was both beautiful and enlightening.
There were a few life changing, simple but profound truths that came to light on this trip, truths that wove through multiple facets of my life and Self. Truths that once realized, started a ripple effect of change as my eyes began to truly see. In this blog post I will start with the first of these truths. Fear is what gives density or darkness its Power. Sitting on Keith's porch with 30+ people, mostly strangers from all over the world, my heart racing and my hands shaking, I knew that it was time to voice and release a darkness that had haunted me for over a decade. When I was 16 years old I was raped and for 12 years, the fear of that one moment has held me captive. It was a dark secret that became a part of my identity. Until recently, I couldn't even say the word rape without fear that it would ignite yet another panic attack. Even after years of therpay, and much self-reflection, I knew there was still a layer under the surface that I had not lifted. A layer cloaked and protected by Fear.
As I vocalized my darkest secret and said "yes" to my own process and "hello" to the power of my authentic self, my Fear no longer had power over me. My rape no longer had power over me. After I told my story, another woman was brave enough to speak about her own traumatizing sexual assault experiences and she then helped me to lift the last remaining heaviness. She told me that my rape is not my story. It does not define me. It is not a part of who I am but rather a part of my journey. I realized in that moment that holding onto this secret all these years was not only giving it the power to define me but that my silence wasn't helping anyone, least of all me. Vocalizing my experience helped me to release it and, at the same time, it helped another woman to process her own trauma.
Once I returned from Guatemala, I knew that a shift had occurred, a weight had been lifted. I could now talk about my experience without fear, anxiety or attachment. As I communicated with other women about my trip and what I had learned, I heard more and more stories about their own sexual assaults, and I saw a pattern in many of their words. Many of them said, "I had a similar experience", but did not seem to consider it rape. I struggled with the same issue throughout the past 12 years, and although all of my therapists said the same thing, I had a hard time fully acknowledging it. The definition of rape is simple. It is a "criminal offense defined in most states as forcible sexual relations with a person against that person's will" or in other words, a nonconsensual sexual act. The fear of using the word rape comes from a feeling that our experience is not worthy of being called rape, but when we allow that fear to dictate the way we conceptualize our own experience, it diminshes the severity and personal trauma of it and therefore does not allow us to properly process it. However, regardless of the words we use, or the particular circumstanses of our experience, it is how it affects us individually that matters. Allow yourself the opportunity to go deep within and feel it, in order to move through it, understand it and begin to heal it.
In order to fully release this particular trauma I also had to let go of the self blame, shame and regret surrounding it, and simply accept it as a part of my journey and appreciate how it has helped me grow. Throughout the past 12 years, my rape has taught me many things. It taught me that my self worth should not come from being a sexual object or from physical beauty, but from my innate strength, intelligence, divine femininity and most importantly from the power of my own heart. I had to learn to detach from other people's opinions and responses to my experience. Other people's opinions cannot and should not define your experience. Sexual trauma is an assault on every aspect of a being; mind, body and soul, and there are many people that don't understand that fact. I think that maybe if the 1 in 3 women that have been sexually assaulted were to share their experiences, then people would see the reality of what their sisters, mothers, daughters, wives, and friends have been through, and would offer their love and support and hopefully begin to change the awareness and consciousness about sexual assault so that that horrifying statistic can also change.
My spiritual journey has gradually lead me to myself, to my authentic self and the power that she pocessess. The power to heal both myself and others as I lift the density to make room for even more Light and Love. It is a life long journey of learning and exploring and a journey I humbly accept. These blog posts are meant to heal, to shed light on the darkness and create change through love. I openly and warmly invite anyone who wishes to share their thoughts and feelings to please do so in the comment section or contact me directly. Let the conversation begin ladies.
Live Your Life With Love,