by Karen Frazier, Managing Editor
Paranormal Underground Magazine
I think I may be in the process of being set free. Or at least that is how it feels right now. Who knows how it will feel in a week or so?
I woke up this morning at about 5 a.m. Lying in bed, I started to worry. Worrying is a habit that I developed long ago, and it is a pastime that I engage in altogether too much, I think. The way I looked at it, I had a lot to worry about. I lost my cushy corporate job in February, and my unemployment runs out here within the next two weeks. The state is supposed to send me some paperwork for an extension, and it hasn’t. So finances were a big worry this morning at 5 a.m. As Chad said in his blog yesterday, lying in bed in the dark seems to be the time when your fears pay you a visit and your imagination runs away with you. I was telling myself stories about all of the things that could happen to my family as finances got tight, and I realized I was trapped in a destructive thought pattern.
I was tired. I was stressed. I wanted to go back to sleep. I decided that instead of focusing on what could happen, I would try to visualize what I wanted to happen. Visualization has been a powerful tool for me in my life, and it has in large part led me to discover and follow my life’s purpose and passion. When fear has me in its grip, however, it competes with the lovely visions I am creating for myself. Such was the case this morning, and I just wasn’t able to visualize.
I’ve come to believe that we are guided in our lives – whether it is by our subconscious, our higher selves or spirit guides (or something else entirely), I have no idea, but I do know the guidance is there. I’ve also learned that I can tap into that guidance by setting my intention (asking for help) and then sleeping on it.
So, I set my intention – but sleep was elusive. By now it was almost 6 a.m. and I was thinking that maybe I would just get up. But I was still tired. Really, really tired. Then I realized that in my head was a slide show. Things come to me in pictures. I always have a sort of random slide show flashing through my mind, no matter what I am doing. Whether I have my eyes open, I’m writing, reading, watching TV or lying there with my eyes shut, image after image flashes in through my brain. Usually I ignore the pictures as background noise, because I am so used to them being there. Still, I realized this morning, maybe if I laid there and watched my slide show, I’d finally be able to drift off to sleep. And so I did. I watched pictures of steel structures backlit by the sun, oil derricks with the sun setting behind them, and people in all manners of dress. I allowed the pictures to come. I didn’t try to control or label them. I just watched as they came and went. It must’ve worked. I fell asleep.
While I was sleeping, I had a dream that I can’t really remember the details of. Here’s what I do remember. I was in a very frightening and stressful situation, and I was reacting appropriately. I was frightened. I was stressed. I was angry. Suddenly everything changed. I was no longer frightened, angry or stressed. The situation itself, however, hadn’t changed. Just me. I was calm and peaceful in the midst of whatever my stressful dream scenario was.
When I woke up, the words, “You don’t HAVE to do anything,” were in my head. Now this is something I’ve always known intellectually – that it is all a choice. But I haven’t really felt or believed it.
I’ve long said to Jim – and to other husbands that I know – “You have it so easy as men. All you have to do is show up!” What I always meant by that is that the woman is typically the center of the family, and the center of the worry. In most marriages, I see the woman do the planning, juggle everyone’s schedule, plan everyone’s meals, do the grocery shopping, keep the house clean, worry about the well-being of the kids – all of that. We often take that on as wives and mothers. We feel if we let go and left it up to everyone else, the house would fall apart, the lawn would grow into a jungle, and the kids would be dirty, unwashed undernourished heathens who never did their homework or showed up for soccer practice.
This morning I woke up knowing the truth. All I really have to do is show up. It’s all we really all have to do. And we don’t even have to do that, if we don’t want to. We choose to show up. We choose to get out of bed every morning. We choose to go to work (or not). We choose to pay our bills.
I don’t have to do a darn thing – I do it all because I choose to. I choose the stress and I choose the worry. I choose the stories that I tell myself about those things. I don’t have to do a thing except be present. What I have long accused others of is true for myself, as well. I just have to show up.
There is freedom in actually finally allowing this understanding to penetrate my thick skull. It allows me to merely be instead of being stressed or fearful. It’s. My. Choice. How cool is that?
I don’t know where the guidance comes from. I have some theories – but I can’t say for sure. But I do know that it is there, and more than once it has helped me to free myself from destructive thoughts that are holding me back from my life’s passion and purpose. That guidance is an unimaginable gift, and I think it has always been there. I am so grateful that I’ve finally quieted myself enough to actually listen.