DANNY: A FAIRY TALE FOR GROWNUPS

Time for another fairy tale… This one is about a little boy called Danny. It could so easily be about a little boy called Sam or Edward, or a little girl called Sarah or Katie. However, in our story, just now, it is a little boy called Danny.

Are you sitting comfortably? Then I will begin…

There was once a little boy called Danny. He was a very lucky and much loved little boy who, from the moment he was born, received nothing but praise. And we all know how very important it is to receive praise. Danny was praised for being such a good baby, who slept through the night very quickly. He was praised for never being too demanding, and his mummy would tell all her friends how, if he would have a temper tantrum – at least, that’s what she called it – when he woke in the night, having not long been fed, or was a little bit damp, she could just ignore him for a while and he would stop crying and let her go back to sleep.

Danny’s mummy badly wanted a good baby, because she had been quite worried about how she might cope if he needed her too much. Danny’s mummy had a great need for peace and quiet, and for things to be predictable and steady, so she had been quite worried in case having a baby might shake things up too much.

As Danny grew into a toddler, he could not help noticing that there were days when his mummy cried a lot, and others when she seemed very sad. Sometimes, his daddy, who wasn’t there a lot of the time, would come home and shout a lot, and make his mummy cry some more. There was a lot of sadness. Danny started to try to work out how he could protect his mummy and look after her. He needed her to be ok, because she was his safety, and so he began to realize, in a simple sort of way, that it was his job to make sure that she was happy.

So Danny taught himself how to be extremely patient, very considerate, and to never make a fuss. Even when he felt like making a fuss, because he felt cross or upset or something did not seem fair. It did not matter if he was not feeling fine, just as long as his mummy was not sad or crying. Danny became very good at this. He learned how to notice when his mummy needed a hug, or a tissue, or a biscuit, or to borrow his teddy. And he also learned to behave very carefully when his daddy was home, so that he would not make things any worse by causing an argument or by making his daddy shout. Danny knew by now, so clearly, that his job was to keep things safe, and to keep everybody happy. He didn’t know any more whether he himself was happy or sad, cross or frightened, worried or upset. He had stopped noticing that a long time ago. But he was extremely good at doing this most important – indeed, vital – job of keeping everyone else happy.

When Danny got to school, he also impressed the teachers with how patient and kind and protective he was. He always seemed to know what was the right thing to do at any given moment. He would notice when other children were sad, and would spend his break times keeping them company, walking around the playground with them, arm around their shoulders. When Danny’s mummy and daddy would go to parents’ evenings, they would come away glowing with pride at all they were being told about their little boy. They learned that he was a monitor for this, and a monitor for that. They learned that he had even organized a litter patrol in his break times, when he would go round picking up all the litter in the playground that other children had dropped. He got a special award for that. The teacher even said – and this made his mummy and daddy exceptionally proud – that he was so well behaved in class that often, if you didn’t actually look up and see him there, sitting right at the back quietly getting on with his work without a fuss, you could even forget that he was there at all.

Danny’s mummy and daddy thought this was just wonderful, and congratulated each other on what a successful job they had done of bringing him up.

There was a tiny rocky patch when Danny hit his teens. He went through a stage of liking certain things that his parents didn’t approve of, wanting to wear clothes his parents didn’t approve of, listening to music his parents didn’t approve of, and wanting to hang out with friends in a way that his parents didn’t approve of. He tried hard in his way to do these things, but one day his mum said something that frightened him to his core. She said, ‘ After all I’ve done for you, you treat me like this! I can’t stand the sight of you. You’ve broken my heart. Go away, I can’t bear to be around you.’ And finally, Danny realized the truth of things.

He realized that if you want people to love you, to approve of you and want to be around you, you must always do what they want you to do, and be what they want you to be. The fear of it being any other way, of losing his mother and father’s love and approval, was so great, and was so paralyzing, that in that moment the course of the rest of his life felt like it was set. He sat on the floor in his bedroom, in the dark, and pondered the most important truth of his young life.

Then, one day, Danny looked at himself in the mirror and could see, by the way his body had changed, that he had become a grown up. He did not feel any different inside, but it was clear from his body that he had, indeed, grown up. He realized that he was now expected to go out into the world, get a good job, find himself a girlfriend, buy a house, settle down, have a family, save for his old age, and live his life patiently and contentedly, and not want anything for himself or make a fuss.

He tried very hard to do this, because he wanted to make his parents really proud. Especially since he had caused them so much stress and in his teens. But then something terrible started to happen. Something really terrible. He had never experienced anything like it in his life before. He found that he started to feel really angry inside. Explosively angry. Utter rage. And worse still, he found that this explosive rage would leak out suddenly when he was not expecting it. With his girlfriend, with his work colleagues, with total strangers in the street, or people serving at counters, or in cafes. And it was not a straightforward, clean sort of anger. It was nasty, mocking, and sarcastic. He found that he sometimes just wanted to hurt. He knew it was cruel, that the words once out of his mouth could never be unsaid. But he was terrified to discover that he simply did not care! He was not safe anywhere. He was a really bad person. Such a bad person. How had it come to this?

Suddenly, he found himself running. Running from it all. From the nastiness, from the hurt, from the confusion. From the mess. Most of all, from the mess. And then, as he ran, he found the roadway turning into a path, and then the path into a grassy track, the ground suddenly soft under his feet instead of hard and jarring. The air smelt different. Cleaner, lighter, like suddenly he could breathe. He bent over, doubled up, catching his breath in huge, deep gasps. It felt like he had been running for miles and miles. He wanted to stop. Just to stop. For it all to stop!

From bending double, gasping for air, he sank down, knees bent, and knelt on the ground. He found himself looking round. He had no idea how he had arrived at this place, but he seemed to be in a forest. He could smell the richness of the slightly damp ground he was kneeling on, and realized he found it surprisingly soothing, refreshing, and comforting. Sunlight found its way here and there down to the forest floor from high up in the canopy, and in one spot, where the sun threw down a full beam onto an outcrop of rocks, he noticed an old woman. She did not appear to be aware of him at first. She was weaving something in her hands, and seemed totally absorbed. However, he realized that he also knew, somehow and somewhere deep down inside, that this woman knew he was there with every fiber of her being. She was just waiting.

He rather liked this feeling; it was new. No one had ever waited for him like this before. They had always been expecting, never waiting. He cleared his throat. It was the way he had learned to attract attention without making too much of a fuss. It was being polite. To his surprise, the old woman appeared not to notice. She just carried on weaving whatever she was weaving with those nimble fingers of hers.

Danny found himself with a dilemma. Should he clear his throat again? Should he just wait? Should he just tiptoe quietly away? He decided he would clear his throat again. A little louder this time. Not too loud, just a little. He felt a strange pull to this old woman, though he had no idea why. He just knew he was meant to be here, in this place, at this moment, and that she had known he was coming and had been waiting for him.

The old woman clearly registered the second throat clearing. She inclined her head slightly towards him, as if acknowledging the sound, but still made no attempt to speak. She was listening though. Most definitely really listening. She was aware of everything that was going on, outside of him, but also inside.

Then she startled him. She laid whatever she was weaving down on the ground. And then slowly, purposefully, she lifted her head and looked straight at him. She had the most amazing eyes. They were dark, deep pools of fluid wisdom and knowing. She knew, and even though she knew, it was okay. He could not get his head around that one. Even though she knew, it was still ok. Those dark, deep pools held his, and he found himself letting go. Oh of so much. The eyes saw and absorbed and waited.

Suddenly, it felt a bit uncomfortable, like the shared gaze had gone on for just a tiny bit too long, and he broke it to look at the ground and to stroke his hand across the grass and moss where he was still kneeling. The old woman spoke.

‘My child,’ she said. It was a voice both gentle and strong, quite compelling.

He did not know why she had called him that. As far as he was aware, they had never met before. ‘Who are you?’ he asked.

‘My child.’ Again, those strange words. They made no sense… and yet, they did. ‘What have you come back for?’

It was getting really weird now. What was this about coming back? He had not been away. Had he? ‘What do you mean?’ Danny asked. He was both intrigued and nervous. He wanted to understand. Why had he come back? Why? The old woman looked at him again. Her gaze was steady, unwavering, and kindly. She could see so much more than he could, and yet she was waiting for him to know it. What had he come back for? What?

Then, he knew. Suddenly, he knew. Oh, the realization was so very wonderful. He could hardly contain his laughter. And then, all in a rush, he could not contain it. It exploded out of him, just like so much anger and rage had exploded out of him for months and months. And once he had started, he found he could not stop. The laughter burst out of him. Loud, hysterical laughter, as if he had just heard the funniest joke of his entire life. At first, it was a man’s laughter, loud and deep, then it became a belly laugh, then a boy’s giggles and eventually it had become the most joyous peel of laughter he had ever heard. And astonishingly, it was coming out of him!

The old woman’s eyes were merry, twinkling, encouraging. She smiled the most wonderful smile, and grinned as he laughed and laughed. And my goodness, how he laughed. He could suddenly see it all, and could feel a lightness as it all lifted from his shoulders. The weight of a lifetime.

‘It never was my job, was it?’ He finally managed to speak, and his voice was steadier. ‘All that… stuff… it was never my job.’

‘No wonder you were angry, my child. You have taken so much on yourself that was never yours to have to take. And you have lost your joy.’ And then softly, almost in a whisper, ‘ And that, as you have now realized, is what you came back for.’ She smiled, and held his gaze again, raising her eyebrows as she saw his recognition, saw it all sinking in and fitting into place, and nodded gently.

‘And now,’ the old woman said, in a tone that said they were both ready, ‘there is fun to be had and adventures to go on! So you’d better go back so you don’t miss them!’ Then, such a magical chuckle, like a thousand tinkling bells, and the old woman threw her hands up in the air and laughed and laughed.

When she finally stopped, Danny was standing in front of her, holding out his arms. He had no idea whether or not this was ok, but he rather sensed that she would know that this was the most spontaneous thing he had ever done in his life. And that she would not shame him. The old woman’s face melted into the most radiant, beaming smile, and she stood up and held her arms wide open. And when he sank into those arms, into the most complete and satisfying embrace he had ever known, he felt a strange remembering, of a place he had known before, of being held like this before, of being known and loved so unconditionally, just like this, before. He remembered!

It was the old woman who broke the embrace and, with tears in her eyes, stroked his cheek, and planted a kiss there. ‘And now,’ she smiled, ‘it really is time.’ The air all around shimmered with a strange light and, before his eyes, Danny watched as the old woman whose embrace he had just felt so tangibly seemed to become a thousand sparkling fireflies, and merge into the brightness that now lit up the entire clearing.

‘Until next time!’ the tinkling voice laughed. ‘Be sure to have lots of adventures! I’ll be always sharing the fun!’

And that is exactly what Danny did.

@ Janny Juddly 2015
(from “Dancers Amongst The Stars”)

 

REFLECTIONS ON MIRRORS AND THE GIFT OF ONENESS

REFLECTIONS ON MIRRORS

A young man that I have never met before has just walked into my therapy room. He doesn’t do what most people do, which is to walk straight over to the chair I’ve indicated and sit down. Instead, he stands and takes in the room, noticing every detail, weighing everything up.

He glances out of the window, and comments that it’s a dark, heavy, overcast sky out there, which looks like it could soon rain. I look out of the same window at the same sky, and I see white clouds obscuring the sun, but I do not see dark or heavy, nor do I see imminent rain.

Then he looks at a plant on the windowsill, again weighing it up for several moments.

Finally, he looks at me and asks how many times I have to water it. He says it looks like a plant that would need a great deal of care and attention. It is a red geranium, healthy and vibrant, but this young man sees a plant that, if not given the attention it needs, could very easily die.

Finally, he looks straight at me, and asks if I enjoy looking after growing plants, and tells me that his mother used to grow many varieties of cyclamen. I make a mental note of this young man’s words, ‘used to,’ and let all he has said to me, all he has given me of himself, sink in for a moment.

After a moment or two, I say that I can hear his heaviness and lostness, and how badly he feels in need of care, and for someone to notice.
I choose those words because I know that he sees himself reflected in the sky, dark and heavy and carrying a weight of tears which could break any moment; and that he sees himself reflected also in the plant, in need of care and watering and attention.

And I wonder about the mother he mentions who ‘used to’ love plants. I hold in my mind the possibility that ‘used to’ might mean that she is no longer here. But I am also aware that, since this young man sees himself in the plant, then it could also be conveying that she ‘used to’ treat him with tender care and attention and now he feels there is a change.

Maybe something has happened between them; or maybe someone else has her care and attention now and he misses what used to be. Maybe it is something else that will yet emerge. But all these things, all these tiny pieces of this young man, I am holding as I watch him decide to sit down.

He looks again at the sky, and tells me that the rain clouds are really heavy. He says he’s pretty sure it will rain soon, and that when it does it will be such a downpour that everyone will be absolutely soaked… I acknowledge what he is seeing – a huge outpouring, a deluge – and say that perhaps he is fearful of what might happen if he goes near the overwhelming heaviness he is telling me about.

I say that I’m wondering if he is afraid that if he were to start to feel some of it, to open the floodgates that he might not be able to close them again. That he might just cry and cry, exactly as those clouds might release so much rain that everywhere will be flooded.
He looks up at me, startled and a little shaken, and tells me that yes, that is exactly his fear. That he has so many tears inside him, so much crying, that he is sure that if he began to let that out he would never be able to stop.

When I was first a therapist in training, many years ago now, I used to think that such interpretations were a bit flowery, a bit far-fetched. A bit contrived. I learned the techniques I was being taught, came to understand Freud’s conviction that everything, absolutely everything, in the external world was symbolic of our internal world.

I knew that one of the tasks of a good therapist was to help to make the unconscious conscious, and that once we do understand what is going on unconsciously we are empowered to take charge of it and learn from it, to allow it to change us.

I knew that the ego employs a significant number of defences to protect us from knowing just what our unconscious is doing, and that a skilful and careful therapist can help us very gently to give up those defences in the pursuit of our truth, and the discover of our real self.
Looking back, I am staggered at just how much Freud understood all those years ago. And also, I am amazed at the way in which, as I have begun to go through a process of spiritual awakening, I am coming to understand that what he was starting to notice was actually the merest tip of the iceberg in terms of what we are now coming to understand about the nature of our reality and who we really are.

But however simplistic, however rough around the edges, however clumsy and limited, I have come to appreciate just what profound truths he was uncovering, while understanding only the tiniest aspect of what he was introducing to the world. He got a great deal wrong, but he began a wave of awareness from which western society has never looked back.

In my search for the kind of therapist I wanted to be, I fairly quickly moved away from what I felt to be Freud’s rather clinical and dry analysis, in favour of theorists who placed far more emphasis on the importance of the relationship, and the reparative nature of therapy, but I have always known that he was a trailblazer.

It was Freud who got, without fully understanding the full significance of that realisation, that everything is a mirror.

So let’s go back to this young man, and to what he sees in the sky, and in that geranium on the windowsill. And also in me. In me, because I am already – and will come to be, for him, and just for a while – the most significant mirror of all. Just for a while. And in that simple fact lies the way in which each and every one of us assists each other, by playing out a role, voluntarily and with enormous generosity, in order to help each other discover the truth of who they really are.

Years ago, another great analyst, with rather more spiritual awareness, C.J Yung, observed: ‘When an internal situation is not made conscious, it appears outside as fate.’

A hundred years or so later, many of us know this to be true in a more profound and global way. Both the findings of quantum physics, and a greater spiritual understanding of the way the Universe works, both supports the observations of these two great innovators and thinkers, and takes us way beyond anything they could have begun to imagine or comprehend.

So let’s really take it all in. Let’s go there. Let’s allow in the fullest realisation we can manage. Let’s allow that this is a holographic universe and that it reflects back to us, individually and independently, exactly what is going on in our internal world. We experience exactly what we are living on the inside, or what we have for a while been living on the inside. That isn’t about karma or fate or some kind of twisted desire on behalf of the Universe to teach us a lesson. That would make us victims, at the mercy of a pretty whimsical and dogmatic higher power. It would also make nonsense of the experience of the holographic universe and of ourselves as powerful creators and co-creators of our own reality. You can’t have it both ways. But as the creators of our destiny, vibrationally and energetically, let’s just take in what the Law of Reflection, or everyone and everything being a mirror, actually means.

For starters, look at the vast amount of accurate information you suddenly have available to you. If everything is reflecting back to you your own internal world – which current leading edge scientific experiments say that it is – then you need only cultivate honest awareness and openness in order to begin to truly see and know yourself. That is, the personality you have evolved in and for this lifetime. Wow, do you see just how profoundly wise and knowing you could become? The degree of empathy and compassion you could develop? The depth of understanding and lack of judgement you could allow to grow?

And then, if everyone and everything which is presenting itself to you as your projected reality, there can be a different way to meet obstacles and challenges and hurts. Blame is harder, but understanding become easier. While nothing excuses cruelty, abuse, abandonment, we can find a way to perceive the gifts of having a mirror held up to show up either a part of ourselves we are denying, or a part of ourselves which is lacking and which perhaps the other is demonstrating for us.
It is harder to sit in judgement when we realise that our external reality could simply not exist if it were not in some.way mirroring back to us something unresolved in our internal world.

Don’t you find that amazing? Mind-blowing? Someone has agreed, in love and in the service of expansion, to incarnate in order to be of service to you by offering you the gift of a mirror. And at the very same time, in love and in the service of expansion, you are similarly offering that other the gift of a mirror also. What greater gift could there possibly be, one soul to another?

But it’s way bigger than that! It’s not just the occasional significant person who is offering this gift, it is every single person with whom you ever come into contact. However seemingly fleeting and meaningless that contact might seem, it is enormously meaningful. It simply could not take place if you had not energetically made it happen. It can never be another way. Synchronicity is never an accidental circumstance of fate. Every universal law says that is impossible.

And it isn’t only other human beings who offer this gift of insight and growth. It is absolutely every single minute detail in the environment which surrounds you. The weather, the scenery, the seeming accidental annoyances or strokes of luck, everything. You are the creator of it all. And we are co-creators with you. We also co-create on a global scale. Our belief and the feeling of that belief, creates the world in which we live. And beyond that, the universe itself.

It isn’t that the Big Bang simply happened and we are all haphazardly and chaotically getting by, at the mercy of fate. That’s the old science, the old paradigm. It’s as outdated and outmoded as the idea that the world is flat or that the sun revolves around the Earth. The truth is that we ARE the Big Bang, light energy in constant motion, creative and expanding, loving and compassionate and free.

So let’s go back to that young man in my therapy room. I want to suggest something further, something that I find really amazing when I go to work every day, and something which we can all do, something each and every one of us can offer to each other. It’s what I shall be doing for this young man who has just come to see me. It is this:
We don’t just get to be a passive mirror, reflecting back to the other their internal state. By virtue of the fact that they are asking us to be that mirror, and that we are willingly engaged in offering that gift, two things become certain. And both are incredible!

The first is that we get to see ourselves in a mirror, too. This isn’t just one way. We get to play out and experience all that this other has to offer us, too. We get to see how we interact and respond, what they do to us, what they trigger and brings up in us, who we are right now. They offer us valuable insight also, through that amazing gift of connection with another spark of Source energy.
The second is even more amazing. Because this is all about Source expanding and; because Source is love and light in constant motion and experiencing and; because we ARE Source energy, we cannot help but bring to such encounters, at the deepest level, the compassion and understanding of who we truly are. We play out a role, supported by the ego, for the purpose of this lifetime, but ultimately our nature is Love. Our whole being is Love.

So the ultimate gift, every time, lies in our ability and willingness to offer, through an act of generous loving, a NEW possibility, a mirror showing the potential rather than the actual. That is, a mirror of who the other can become when they allow our interaction to affect and change them.

In therapy training, we talk about the therapist offering a ‘second chance.’ By that, we mean the offering of the opportunity for the client to experience through another – who will give it willingly – the restorative and healing experience of being understood, accepted and loved unconditionally. ‘Second chance’ because it wasn’t available, for whatever reason, when it was needed the first time round.

And so, here’s the thing. Here’s the most amazing thing of all about knowing you are a mirror. You can be more, offer more, give more, than all the affirmations in the world, to someone who has been seeking a mirror all their life because they don’t yet know how to see themselves, or who they are. Still less, who they can become.
Do you get how big that is? You may not be able to create in someone else’s reality, but you sure as anything can help co-create an experience someone has been waiting for right up until this very moment.

That’s how vital you are. That’s how important, how crucial, how powerful, how defining, your showing up at this place, at this time, in this moment, in this way, in this person’s life, actually is.
And if that person happens to be a total stranger, with whom you interact in the most fleeting way – a look, a gesture, a word, a touch – then you are being given, in that fleeting moment, the opportunity to convey the sense that they are worthy, that they are accepted, that they are unique, that they are equal and one and the same.

If that isn’t an awesome gift of a mirror, then I don’t know what is. And if that isn’t what makes this Universal heart swell and expand, then I’m struggling to think of anything quite so full of compassion and generosity than a gift such as this.

Don’t you just LOVE that?!

So what are you waiting for?!

Love and sparkles
Janny Juddly ? ✨

DO YOU TRUST LIFE?

If you were asked if you trust life, I wonder what your answer would be. The answer might be immediately obvious to you, because the feeling that rises in you in response to that question is very clear. Alternatively, it might take you a while to ponder and consider. It might be a new thought, something you have not ever really considered before. Take your time, and think about it.

Do you say yes, because you trust that life is always bringing you exactly what experience you need in any given moment? That you know all is well no matter what is happening right now, or no matter how it might appear? Or do you say no, and that you feel that everything is completely unknown and unpredictable, and you do not like the feeling of being out of control? Maybe you talk about Fate. You might say that Fate seems to deal some people a good hand and others a not so good one. That it is the luck of the draw? Do you perhaps say that most of the time you do trust life, but you do find it comforting to seek out psychic readings and other methods of seeing into the future because it’s nice to know what the future holds? Just to be sure? Or maybe something different entirely?

It is an important question, because the way we view life determines how we engage with our life, and the way we choose to live it. It leads us, for instance, to either feel that we can jump in wholeheartedly to the opportunities life presents us with, because everything will be okay. Or it leads us to feel we want to hold back and to see guarantees before we make a move. Or it leads us to live in ‘if only’, and look on through the window at life going on for others, wishing we could go inside and join them but never quite finding the courage to do that.

Our response to that question also determines how we deal with troubles or apparent setbacks. I suspect many of us live our lives in more fear than we would maybe easily acknowledge to ourselves. Even those of us who would say that we were on a spiritual journey of self-discovery, and who were coming to realize just how much we influence the particular reality in which we exist, have a wobble now and then.

We like the words, ‘things are always working out for me’ and ‘you are always exactly where you need to be,’ that we hear so often amongst ‘enlightened’ friends and spiritual writers and teachers. We like the words a lot, and we would love to believe that they are true wholeheartedly. Really, we would. And we say them religiously day after day, several times a day, as affirmations or mantras. We try incredibly hard! But our history and experience of life to date seems to so easily contradict that. And so, perfectly understandably, we get scared.

I want to say ‘perfectly understandably’ because this is not about getting you to beat yourself up for your fears. Rather, it is about suggesting that, even in that place of fearfulness, you are doing what you came here to do. You are completely on track. This is not the way it seems. How about we go and visit the big picture for a few moments, and remind ourselves why we are here. Why we came.

We came here, as sparks of Source energy, to experience life in a human, physical form. We came for expansion. Source is always expanding. Forget anything you have heard about ‘it should be easy.’ That is just going to make you beat yourself up and believe you are getting it wrong when you hit those times when it is not feeling particularly easy. And sometimes it just is that way.

So what is this thing we refer to as expansion? How does Source expand? Why does Source need to expand at all? Source expands because that is the nature of love. And Source is Love. Source expands through the love and compassion which experiencing the whole range and extent of human joy and pain, fear and excitement, tension and release brings. It can be no other way. And you are Source energy, and so you came to do that.

Knowing that changes things a lot, if we allow it to! When we get fearful while looking through the eyes of our ego – the bit of us that holds us together while we’re getting used to how this ride goes – we can start to believe that life is dangerous and unpredictable, and we retreat from the greater truths we could get in touch with if we kept our hearts open, instead of shutting them down.

Those greater truths include the fact that we all chose the key elements of what experiences we would welcome in this lifetime, as Source energy, in the service both of our own expansion and the expansion of All That Is. We did not choose how we would react or respond – that is the bit that is about expansion. That is the journey and the challenge and the adventure of this lifetime. And it is easier once we embrace it rather than fighting it. Because then we can say, and understand the enormity of it, ‘everything is always working out for me’ or ‘I am exactly where I need to be.’

We can say that because we have grasped firmly that we are an integral and essential part of everything else, that we are not doing this separately or on our own, but as part of a web of energy and expanding love that never ceases to become more. We can then take fully on board that, as Source energy, we are on a mission. We are on the leading edge. And our journey, and what we choose to do with it, is being shared by more loving light energy and supportive presence than we can ever imagine, and that there is more profound wisdom and extraordinary power available to us in any given moment than we can begin to comprehend from this earthly perspective.

We can then begin to understand that those statements we say so readily are actually the statements of a powerful creator who has chosen to have a complex and expansive and fully human experience. A real experience, a full experience, an unconditional one. In Love and with compassion and loads and loads of help and support. And once we get that, everything changes. We have moved from powerless unwilling victim to powerful and willing creator.

And our relationship with Source shifts perspective too. We no longer expend endless effort trying to work out what prayers or rituals or affirmations we can use to persuade Source to make it different. We stand tall and know that we are a trailblazer, that we came because we were strong enough to play this role, see this out, make good sense of it and use it, grow in understanding and compassion, and joy and love through it, and mindfully, as co-creators, give that back to Source as glorious expansion. Because we are Source and the expansion is who we are becoming.

Do you see how different that is? Do you feel the excitement of the enormity of it! Can you feel the expansion of it already? So how about we go forward knowing that this is who we are, why we are, all we are? How about we remember where we came from and where we go back to, and who we remain all the time in between? How about we go forward in our full power, knowing all we have, all that surrounds us, all that is loving us and supporting us, sharing the wisdom and strength of all that is breathing every breath with us and looking through our eyes with us every single step we take, and expanding with every emotion we feel and every thought and perception we have?

How about we just do that!

@ Janny Juddly 2015
(from “Dancers Amongst The Stars”)

 

ONLY THE BRAVEST SOULS – the spiritual gift of another’s disability

As I walk into the bank, I note the long queue and how unusually busy it is today. It is going to be a longer than normal wait to be able to speak to someone at the counter. Even though it is so busy, and the queue is about 10 people long, there are only two active staff on the desk.

Then I realise, split seconds after, that all is not as it should be. Something out of the ordinary is going on. I can’t immediately place it, but I know that everyone is frightened. To varying degrees, and some are covering it more successfully than others. But everyone is frightened.

Some people are looking nervously around them, trying to decide whether to stay or leave. They are averting their eyes, afraid that there might be trouble.

Others are muttering to each other other under their breath, and I hear snippets. Things about “some people” and “somebody should do something.” Even something about what the world is coming to.

One woman is trying to disguise the fact that she is covering her handbag in case someone snatches it from her. An elderly man looks on, staring, unaware of how hostile the stare is.

The bank staff themselves are jittery, nervous, and I notice one clearly speaking on an intercom to someone behind the scenes, and almost immediately several extra staff come out into the main banking area.

I can feel the tension in the air, the fear, the paralysis. This hits me first as I come in through the automatic doors. It is palpable; it grips my whole body.

I wonder whether there is something like a threatened bank robbery in progress, whether I should get out while I can and go and phone for assistance. I am, after all, still next to the door. In theory, I could still escape.

But something in the air tells me something different, and I find myself walking in….

Just a few steps and then I see him. The person who is sparking such fear in everyone, and I can see why people are uneasy.

The young man in question is probably in his mid-twenties, and he is the one who is frightened. He is rocking from one foot to another, hitching up his trouser legs and fluttering them in an attempt to cool himself down. He is flicking rhythmically at his hair, wiping sweat out of his eyes. And he keeps breathing out, loudly. Big breaths. Clearly he knows about techniques to calm himself, and he is trying hard to do this.

He tries to speak, and his difficulty in making himself understood becomes apparent. He is able to pronounce only vowels. There are no consonants. He has good emphasis and intonation, and he employs mime and signs to complement his speech, but everyone is too frightened to be able to hear what he is trying to say.

I know what this is. It’s very familiar to me. I have a daughter with learning disabilities and autism, and I have spent a lifetime watching this same reaction happening. I also recognise that it is only because I am so familiar with this that I can do what I now do.

I start to approach the young man, who is in the queue, but clearly finding the wait and the crowding, and how unpredictably and unfamiliarly busy it is today, almost overwhelmingly. A middle aged man touches my arm and suggests I don’t go any nearer.

I tell him I know it will be fine. He laughs uneasily and jokes that I look like I’d have no hesitation in throwing a punch at him if need be. He has misinterpreted my intentions. He thinks that I share his perception of this young man.

I go up to the young man, who has now noticed me, and somehow is calming. I tell him that I can see he is feeling really stressed, and acknowledge how busy it is in the bank today. I tell him that I will happily keep his place for him if he would like to go away a little where there is some space. I tell him he can keep watching me and that I will help him by putting my fingers up to show him how many people there are still in front of him.

He reaches out towards me. The man who thought I might need to throw a punch moves in readiness to protect me, but stops when he sees that the young man – who tells me his name is Michael, in vowel sounds which I show I am willing to try to make out – is simply reaching out to touch my elbow and give me a huge smile.

Michael starts talking animatedly, saying how he gets stressed when it is busy or crowded. That he starts to feel he can’t breathe. I breathe out loudly and long several times, and he starts to do it with me. He is starting to feel safer. The agitated moving from foot to foot is easing.

He makes a sudden movement, holding his hand in a way that says we’re going to do a special handshake. We clasp hands and cover each other’s wrists with our thumbs. I realise this has huge meaning for him, and we laugh together at the bond we now have.

I suddenly become aware of a change in energy all around me, and as it catches my attention it catches Michael’s also. We both look up to see kindness and concern. A bank official goes to get him a cup of water, and another takes him to a seat where he can see what’s happening without feeling crowded. People are smiling at him. He gives me a huge thumbs up.

The queue forms again and we wait to be seen. Everyone is now watching, and aware. Every time another person has finished being served, they wave to let him know, and put up five fingers, then four, then three, then two.

At two, he suddenly decides to get up from where he is sitting and come and take his place back in the queue. He is no longer frightened, because the people around him are no longer frightened. Love and compassion and kindness have replaced fear.

When I have finished being served, I see that Michael is now making himself understood and having a laugh with the person who is helping him. They are working it out. I catch his eye as I leave, and we smile and put our thumbs up.

I get back to my car, and am surprised to find sudden tears falling. Oh it’s so complicated, isn’t it, this journey that we sign up for? This challenge we face every single day between fear and unconditional love?

My tears are for all of us: Michael, my daughter Becky, and myself, everyone in the bank, every single brave soul incarnated here on the journey back to remembering who we really are, and where we came from.

I am suddenly full of awe and compassion at the unconditional love that is out true nature, and how stunningly beautiful it is every single time we catch a glimpse of it in a fellow soul.

And don’t we owe so much to these strong, valiant souls who come to teach us to push beyond our fear and reach for unconditional love? What a courageous path they have chosen, for they experience such hurt and shame and misunderstanding from we who will fear before we realise that it is safe to love.

Souls like Michael. And Becky. We stand in awe, and the deepest appreciation.

In oneness, and with love.

Namaste.
@ Janny Juddly 2016

 

 

WHY IT’S SO HARD TO WALK AWAY FROM AN ABUSER

In case you’re wondering, this isn’t going to be one of those pieces where an empath meets a narcissist.

It’s going to be little messier—not so neat.

It’s also going to go a little deeper, not only into the psyche of the abuser, but also into the psyche of the one who can’t walk away. It’s going to involve looking deep into our shadow side, and the workings of our psyche, which is always pushing us towards health.

Before we get to how our psyche does that, however, we need to understand trauma: Every single one of us who finds ourselves entangled in an abusive or damaging relationship is actually trying to heal trauma.

I know, it might sound backwards, but when we are in an abusive relationship, our psyche somehow thinks that we can heal ourselves.

The word trauma has dramatic connotations. We tend to think it refers to someone who’s experienced a serious train crash or the violent and unexpected death of a loved one. But in actual fact trauma is anything that makes up feel that things are unsafe or unpredictable. And the most significant trauma happens to us in childhood, when we don’t have the resources that grown-ups have to deal with it.

There are two major types of trauma a child can experience. The two major wounds, if you like, that set us on the path towards a search for healing.

These are Intrusion and Abandonment.

And they don’t have to be real, or literal. They need only be experienced or perceived to be real. They simply have to make a child feel unsafe. So, sometimes we’re talking about actual abuse—sexual, physical, emotional, psychological—and sometimes we’re talking about a sensitive child who didn’t understand that teasing wasn’t meant seriously. With abandonment, we might be talking about neglect or a parent leaving or dying, but we might also be talking about a parent having appeared to stop thinking about the child, maybe because of the birth of a new baby, a parent becoming depressed or going into the hospital.

Clearly, some of these are way more deeply traumatizing than others, but we’re talking trauma nevertheless.

So, how does our psyche try to help us heal our trauma? It uses the most effective way ever! It makes us repeat the experience! (Incidentally, if it resonates with you, for “psyche” you can read “soul.”)

For many reasons, we’re drawn like magnets towards people who will recreate for us the exact same circumstances that caused our original trauma. The most obvious reason is so that we can experience a different outcome this time, by discovering that we can think and behave differently, and so bring about a better outcome. In other words, we find a way to love instead of hate.

When we do that, we’ve done the healing our psyche made us set out to do.

However, that bit usually comes last. On the way to that place, we’re likely to have to face not only our own trauma, but also the demons that our experience of that trauma placed alongside it. And we get to face them, always, by being brought face to face with someone who will mirror them back to us, because they have them too.

And they have them too, because they’ve known them, just like us.

It’s a bit like having a twin. It feels so good at first! We’re seen and known in a way we never thought possible. And this person gets it so clearly, seems to understand exactly where we’ve been, because they’ve had parallel experiences. It’s bliss! Effortless freedom!

But then it starts to go horribly wrong. This person isn’t just mirroring the good bits anymore, they’re mirroring all the other stuff too—the stuff we’ve tried to be in denial about, the bits of us that horrify us.

But that also draws us in further. There’s a part of us that’s drawn to the drama of being free to act out the demons that appal us with someone who’ll let us do that, and who’ll act them out back.

And so they start to hurt us, abuse us—often in the exact same ways that we’ve probably hurt others. And so the drama that’s meant to lead to healing unfolds. Messily. Dirtily.

Suddenly, we’re into the Abuser/Abused Dynamic, sometimes known as The Drama Triangle: Victim/Rescuer/Abuser. Round and round we go, exchanging and interchanging roles. And instead of walking away, like everyone who loves us keeps telling us to, we forgive and excuse again and again. We can’t seem to let go.

We know and recognize these wounds and we feel compelled to protect and forgive. To rescue.

But here’s the thing. Here’s the crucial thing!

See, the whole thing is just a play staged for our benefit. This is our story. And we’re our own victim, rescuer and abuser. It’s all a mirror, an illusion, one mighty holographic mirror into the human psyche. And its primary purpose is to help us find our way back to the unconditional love we actually are. We’ve met our nemesis so that we can break free and soar to our zenith. Everything is exactly as it should be, and we’re doing exactly what we came here to do: tasting the depths and heights of being fully human. And we’re doing it so well!

And actually, so is our twin! They’re playing their part to perfection too, exactly as they’d agreed. Wow, what a play, and how well it’s been staged!

See, we only get caught up in that Drama Triangle when we forget who we really are, and what’s really going on here. We only believe that our abuser needs rescuing if we believe the story that something terrible is happening. That this other person really is helpless and in need of our salvation. And also, only if we’ve forgotten who we really are and why we’re here.

And if we cling to the part of us that is hurt and twisted by pain, rather than freeing it to heal.

Once we remember that we’re actually taking part, mutually and voluntarily, in a play that—if we will only let it—will lead to healing and compassion, we’re able to look at what’s happening with fresh eyes. We realize that this other soul is on a journey too, of their own making and choosing. And that we have agreed to be co-creators for a time, for a reason, but that for each of us to fully live our purpose, we now have to let go. At least for now. In this life time. We have to walk away.

We talk so often about encountering mirrors, we refer to synchronicities, but we often tend to think on a small scale. But it’s happening on a larger scale, too, all the time. And in that knowledge, if we allow it, lies our freedom and our permission to walk away. Being fully human is their gift to us, not just ours to them. And the drama that’s been played out will have encapsulated the themes we chose to explore in this lifetime. And if we want to resolve them, the drama must end. We don’t have to make it neat; it can stay messy. After all, we have eternity.

And, knowing that, we can—and must—walk away.

@ Janny Juddly 2016

BREAKDOWN OR BREAKTHROUGH? THE JOURNEY WHICH IS DEPRESSION

Breakdown or Breakthrough? The experience of Depression.

One of the most frequent reasons that fellow human beings come to see me, whether as a psychotherapist, a spiritual mentor, or energy worker, is because they are struggling to free themselves from an experience which is shared by every single soul on the planet, at various times: the appallingly dark and lonely place which is Depression.

It differs by degree, of-course. For some, it is a relatively temporary period of darkness, maybe six months or so. For others, it is something that is a lifelong struggle. For some, it is interspersed with periods of frantic activity designed to block it out.

No matter which it is, at the time, and while it lasts, it is one of the bleakest and most frightening experiences any of us can have. It is a time of feeling utterly alone, without help. Of feeling as if no-one could possibly understand. It is hard to believe that it could ever end, it feels so suffocating all-consuming. All joy is gone, all hope.

We look at the rest of the world going about its business as if everything is fine. People seem to be reaching for dreams, finding happiness, making plans, talking and sharing, getting on with their lives. Coping. We find it impossible to even begin to imagine how we could ever be like them.

Depression would appear to be one of the most debilitating and widespread illnesses of our Age, wouldn’t it? The medical profession, which is trained to put the emphasis upon symptom management and relief, will tell you that you have a chemical imbalance in your brain. It will therefore offer you either a course of antidepressants or a few weeks with a cognitive behavioural therapist. In the short term, these can be helpful. However, they don’t solve the problem. They help with the symptoms, but they don’t touch the cause.

I am in no way wishing to diminish the help that the medical profession is able to give. Rather, I want to point out that research shows that, if you measure the chemical imbalance in the brain prior to a course of therapy, or period of spiritual searching, or personal development work of any kind, and then measure those same chemicals at the end, you will find that those chemicals are in balance once again. The difference is that, in the latter case, you will have gained wisdom and insight and a degree of self-awareness and resilience which is a pretty good guarantee, providing you’ve done the work and seen it through, that you won’t get depressed again.

So, what is Depression? And how do you overcome it? Two pretty vital pieces of information, wouldn’t you agree? What I’m going to offer you arises out of my own training, experience, reading of research and spiritual growth. I make no claim to have a definitive answer, and it is totally fine for you to disagree with what I am going to say. However, it may help, so I’d like to at least offer it. So, here goes. Let’s come at it from a slightly different angle, if that’s okay?

Ever come across the term ‘Dark Night of the Soul?’ It refers to an experience not unlike that of Depression. It is an experience not dissimilar to terror. It is a place of feeling profoundly lost and cut off, but not knowing why. It is dark, bleak, full of despair, hopelessness and there is no joy. Most frightening of all, we find we do not know who we are. All sense of ourselves is gone. The who we were is no more, yet we do not know who we are now, or who we will become. It is existentially terrifying.

Now the reason I came at it from that angle is that, when you go deeply into the experience of Depression, rather than looking more superficially at the obvious symptoms, this is what you find:

• The sense of self is under threat

• Everything is being questioned

• There is a search for meaning, purpose and the true nature of things

• There is an overwhelming sense of loss, without knowing what has been lost

• Parts of the self which are deemed ugly or unworthy are seen as defining the person; it is who they are

• There is such a sense of failure, self-blame and often self-loathing

• There are suppressed feelings of anger which get turned in on the self rather than becoming the energy of change

• There is a searching for meaning and connection, a desire to make sense of the story, to find a context

• There is an exhaustion born of having had to pretend, cover up, be one thing in the world while feeling a quite different reality inside

We therapists talk a lot about the Real Self and the False Self. The False Self is who we have learned to believe the world requires us to be; the Real Self is who we actually are. The whole of us, including the perceived ‘unacceptable bits’ we have come to fear or despise. The person we came here to be.

Do you begin to see where I’m going with this? The experience of Depression and the experience of the Dark Night of the Soul are so similar you could even risk suggesting that they are one and the same. So I’m going to risk it.

Some years ago, a figure many of us will be aware of, Brene Brown, a researcher into vulnerability, and shame, had a major emotional breakdown when the findings of her research conflicted powerfully with the person she had constructed, and believed to be functioning successfully in the world. She discovered that, in reality, she had learned to be emotionally distant and shut down, to not trust others or herself with difficult emotion, and to pretend to be one person while actually being someone else.

Lots of people who come to see me are going through something very similar. They have been given the diagnosis of ‘a breakdown.’ However, I try to help them to discover, and experience, that is is not a breakdown at all, but rather a ‘breakthrough.’ It is the liberating process in which we gradually let go of the False Self and learn to dare to be our Real Self in the world. No more pretence. No more apologies. No more compromise. Our authentic self, in full alignment with who we really are.

The self we incarnated to be. The self we came intending to share with the world. The self whose energy will make a profound and lasting difference. Source energy, fluid love, in liquid motion, aware and conscious, connecting with others soul to soul, recognising and living oneness, because the full knowledge of who we really are is beginning to dawn.

So what am I saying, then, about Depression? Specifically, I’m suggesting that it is a message, it is a wake up call. It is highlighting how inauthentic we have learned to become, because that is what we have learned to believe that the world wants. We have learned to believe that simply being ourselves is either not enough, or will mean that others will not love us.

But do you see the con in that? Do you see the trick of the ego? Do you see the way we have learned to measure success? Do you see how easily we learn to compromise who we really are, and came here to be? And do you see how we are denying the world such a precious gift, if only we could step beyond the fear of being measured and compared and judged? Of ‘failing.’? Failing the world’s way?

If, instead, we can see the crisis as an immense push towards authenticity, and the remembering of who we really are, then at least we know what’s happening. It will still be scary, because there are big risks involved to the self we have become. Vulnerability is risky. But once we have pushed through, held our nerve and gone through the flames, and survived, I absolutely promise you that we will never, ever, look back.

Here’s to us, in all our magnificent truth and power!!

@ Janny Juddly 2016

The Therapist in my Pocket

WHY OUR THOUGHTS DON’T CREATE REALITY: THE LAW OF ATTRACTION CLARIFIED

A few days ago, I published an article here at elephant journal called Thoughts Don’t Become Reality—Understanding The Law of Attraction.

Suddenly my inboxes were so full they were heaving!

So many people welcomed the article and the clarity it offered on the difference between a thought, a feeling, a belief and an emotion, and how all of that related to Law of Attraction.

However, there were also requests for more information, seeking even greater clarity and asking the “How to” questions.

So this is a response to those. If you didn’t read the article, you don’t need to have done so in order to benefit from this one; this will stand alone.

I hope it’s helpful!

First, the Law of Attraction can’t really be disputed. We live in a vibrational reality where everything is energy, vibrating at a particular frequency. As energy, we’re not separate from everything else, since everything is the same energy; our vibrational frequency affects the vibrational frequency of everything around us, near and far.

It’s why healers can affect the recovery of someone on the other side of the world.

Most of us wouldn’t disagree. The bit we might disagree about—because we are incredibly muddled here in the West about the difference between thoughts, beliefs, feelings and emotions—is the “how” of it.

We seem to have come up with a statement, which has become a belief, that our thoughts create our realities.

However, while our thoughts are part of what creates reality, they are not the prime mover. They’re one of the company directors, if you like, rather than the CEO.

Knowing and understanding this helps a lot. It instantly gives us the power to influence our reality faster and to change it permanently.

Let’s take the two major feelings from which every single other feeling in the Universe has its source: love and fear. Everything we create, vibrationally, arises out of one of those.

Everything. No exception.

That immediately makes it a whole lot easier.

Love and fear are feelings, not thoughts. We don’t think love or fear; we feel love and fear. And our emotions respond with sensations we can’t mistake. Vibrationally, love and fear are the most powerful vibrations in the universe, and this is the stuff of creation and manifestation.

A thought can recognise what we’re feeling by noticing its emotional manifestation in our body, it can help us to understand it, to contain it, to influence it…all of which is hugely important!

At no point are we saying that our thoughts aren’t a vital component. It’s simply that, in terms of our unique vibrational signature, thoughts aren’t the biggest players; emotions are. That’s because it’s emotions that emit our vibrational frequency. Our thoughts—with practice—can notice what’s going on and make it conscious. And, in that, they are immensely useful! But it doesn’t start there, nor does it end there!

To notice that we’re feeling love or fear is a thought. To then try to make all the reasons why we’re feeling love or fear conscious, is a thought process. But the thought “I’m feeling fear” or “I’m feeling love” in itself is not vibrational; the emotional reaction going on in our body, in response to the feeling of fear or love, is what is vibrating out into the Universe and, through the law of resonance (like vibrations attract), creating our reality.

That’s why affirmations (thoughts which are stating intentions and beliefs) work for some of us and not for others. If thoughts created reality, we’d only have to keep stating affirmations and bingo!…everything we’re intending to happen would happen, right?

But that’s not how it goes.

And that’s why it feels so important to me that I try to help us all get a little clarity on this. So we can create the reality we want, by understanding this whole business of vibration.

So, here’s Marie. She grew up in a family where everyone else got what they wanted—she had fairly self-centred parents, who followed their own dreams but forgot they had a little girl who had some of her own. So, by the time Marie is a grown woman, she has some pretty powerful beliefs going on about not being entitled, and not having the power to change things. She wants to, but those beliefs keep getting in her way, because they keep emitting fear.

Bad news in terms of The Law of Attraction!

Marie’s read lots of self-help books. Oh so many. With a fair degree of desperation, truth be told. She hopes they’ll help, but deep down she doesn’t believe they can help. Or that anything can help!

Then she comes across something called Law of Attraction. It’s new and exciting and she reckons it might be the answer she’s been looking for! Everyone keeps telling her: ‘Thoughts Become Things! Change your thoughts and your reality will change!’

It sounds pretty magical, but Marie’s thinking, what can she lose!

Marie starts saying affirmations out loud to herself morning and evening. She makes a vision board. She watches motivational videos. She joins Law of Attraction groups on Facebook. She signs up to receive motivational emails every day in her inbox. She’s doing everything she can!

But her reality doesn’t change; in fact, if anything, things feel even worse!

And Marie’s bewildered. She can’t understand why!

So, how does all this help us? And Marie?

How does Marie turn all that around?

With two emotional processes: empathy and imagination. Thinking is the tool; empathy and imagination are the power sources we must plug that tool into.

When Marie changes her emotional response, which is what is vibrating out into the Universe, busily creating her reality, her reality can’t help but change.

It’s Universal Law.

So she uses:

Empathy

This tells her where those emotions come from—which is always how the past felt to her, often as a child—and she can hold the hurt part of her in love and understanding (from her current adult perspective) rather than fear (the perspective of all that hurt part of her has learned to believe, and be angry and resentful about, and which is still vibrating out powerfully right now)

Imagination

This helps her feel differently about her past experience, and so to conjure up a different emotional response. Notice, I said feel differently, not think differently. It’s a different emotional response she’s after, not simply different thoughts! Once Marie has used empathy to soften how the past now feels, she can tap into that adult part of her, and begin to imagine a different reality so she can create different emotional responses, which in turn must create a different current and future reality.

And once she’s got her thoughts, feelings, beliefs and emotions all linked in together, she’s tuned in to all the abundance and certainty the Universe has been wanting to give her all along!

It isn’t that our thoughts don’t have a part to play. They help us to think about what’s going on. But it’s our emotional signature, our vibrational footprint, which is actually creating our reality, moment by moment.

Once we get that, and learn to use it consciously, with emotional awareness, we’re truly unstoppable! When we start making intelligent use of our emotional GPS in this way, The Universe responds! It can be no other way!

Happy manifesting!

@ Janny Juddly 2017

The Therapist in my Pocket

HOW OUR MEMORIES CREATE THE STORY OF OUR LIFE, AND WHY THAT MATTERS

Have you ever noticed how the memories we create are exactly the ones we need?

How the themes of our lives are driven by those same memories?

Maybe this seem like a strange way to put it.

But let’s just suppose that the memories we spend a lifetime trying to get past are actually somehow memories we have purposely chosen to create.

As a psychotherapist, who is also aware that our journey is a spiritual one, that’s exactly how I reckon life goes.

Let me show you what I mean:

The other day, a large envelope arrived for me in the post.

I knew what it was, because I could see the hand-written address and I could feel the contents through the envelope.

It was the photograph my uncle had promised to send me when we’d spoken at my Dad’s celebration of life service just after Christmas.

Now, here I was, holding the envelope in my hand and I could feel the dread gripping me.

Memories.

I didn’t want to touch that envelope or even to go near it. Because I knew what it would bring.

I sat for many minutes holding the envelope in my hands. I told myself there was no rush.

Then suddenly I was tearing it open.

I put aside my uncle’s letter and the other one or two additional photos he’d included, and then—there it was.

There it was.

A photo. A photo of the farm. The farmhouse. The hut.

Memories.

Suddenly, I’m no longer a 60-year-old woman. I’m about five or six-years-old and my world is about to be turned upside down.

I’ve had another tantrum, screaming and kicking out and refusing to have anything to do with this harsh woman with the sarcastic tongue and rough hands who has lived in our house since my mother was made to go and live in that house, there, just up the road.

I’m rarely allowed to go and visit her. But if I fetch a chair, I can peer out my bedroom window and can watch her hanging washing out on the line or working in the garden.

My whole being feels her absence. There is a pain that never goes away or even eases and my rage at her having gone away is limitless.

My father’s torn, that much I know. I watch him struggling to pacify this woman who seems to hate me.

He tries to not pay me too much affection when she’s around, because it makes her sneer and say cruel things.

It is just like she sneers at me when I ask if I can be taken up the road to visit my mother.

She makes me feel that my love for my mother is wrong and somehow hurts her. That it isn’t allowed.

That’s why I have these tantrums and why my rage is so great.

Today, after I’ve had yet another tantrum, he takes me by the hand and walks me around to the hut on the farm.

The cross woman is shouting after us as we walk, taunting him with words I don’t yet understand.

Sometimes I worry it’s all too much for him. I seem to have a sense that his heart is breaking, I have that often, but I never know why.

We go in and he closes the door.

Suddenly, the world and its angry shouting is gone, and he’s pulling out a chair, lifting me onto his knee, and telling me that he has something important to tell me.

He says he should have told me before and that he is sorry that he hasn’t. He says it might have prevented a lot.

The tone of his voice is so serious and filled with much sadness. I’m gripped with the fear that he’s going to tell me that he’s going to die.

I’m used to loss, convinced by now that nothing good ever remains, that what he says next will come as no surprise to me.

I’m cold and shivering. My entire being feels like it is made up of only loss and longing.

And it is all somehow connected to the tantrums and the rage inside me.

But then he tells me, with infinite tenderness, a story that I couldn’t have imagined in a million years.

Holding me tightly against his chest, and with tears in his eyes, he tells me who I really am. And who the woman just up the road really is.

He tells me that she’s not my mother, but his. He tells me that she brought me up but isn’t my mother.

He says that my mother died six days after I was born and that it broke his heart.

He says that he’d always been afraid that something bad would happen.

My mind is going numb.

I feel as the cold reaches deeper and deeper into me. It is hard to hear his words as he describes how proud she was of me, that my second name was also her name and that she had loved me and named me.

He describes getting a phone call from the hospital saying he needed to come and how a cold fear had gripped him upon hearing those words. That he’d known it wasn’t normal.

I find myself hearing about that cold fear and wondering if it is the same as mine. My teeth are chattering now and even the warmth of his body is bringing no relief.

He’s telling one story, his story. But, I realize mine is different now from his.

My head is reeling from the catastrophic news that the woman who had loved me through babyhood and toddlerhood isn’t my mother.

She’s not my mother.

All I’ve thought and believed and held on to, that one bit of comfort and certainty, is now gone.

She’s not my mother.

She looked after me for him.

I no longer have a mother.

Everything I believed about my world has just disintegrated!

Suddenly I need to run. Just to run. I scramble off his knee and run for the fresh air.

It’s icy out there, but that doesn’t matter. It’s icy inside me too.

I run and run, across the yard, past the cattle pens, past the hay barn, through the gate and out into the fields.

I’m both numb and exploding with feeling, but I can’t reach it to find what that feeling is.

I want to explode into thousands of pieces. I want for this fear and grief and pain and hate and rage to break.

I can’t hold it or carry it any more. And suddenly, I’m sobbing so hard and deep I’m coughing and choking as I sob, almost unable to get my breath.

I long to go to this woman who was my mother and tell her. But I no longer know what to say.

And then, just as suddenly, I’m back in my bedroom, a woman of 60 feeling still like a little girl of five.

And so I wrote my life’s work in this story which was my beginning:

Through my early loss of key figures.

The breaking of trust.

The confusion of who it was okay to love and who it wasn’t.

The longing for what I couldn’t have even though it felt vital to my existence.

The experiences of being hated, yet never understanding why.

The desire to run whenever pain threatened.

As a powerful creator I had written it prior to incarnating, so that it could create the themes I’d work out in this lifetime:

To find my way back to remembering how to trust, be close without the fear of losing getting in the way, to overcome the rage at abandonment and betrayal, and to love and give without fear.

My beginnings, just as all of our beginnings do, set the scene and the plot which I was going to live out as my story this lifetime.

But that story is just that—a story.

And that is true for every single one of us in our own unique and sacred way.

We create the perfect conditions for our story, one that will provide us with powerful memories.

These then direct the themes that will play out as the dramas of this lifetime.

And when we really understand this truth, we can let go of the person we’ve believed ourselves to be.

And the people we’ve believed others to be, too.

And finally, we can stand in our own power as a magnificent being of light and love who  has created a powerful human experience in the service of the expansion of All That Is.

Oh, the applause, if you could only hear it!

What a journey! What an adventure!

How amazing are we!

@ Janny Juddly 2016

The Therapist in my Pocket

WHAT THE WORLD NEEDS TO GET RIGHT ABOUT EMPATHS

It may be that there’s the teeniest, tiniest tinge of frustration behind this title.

I’m throwing my hands up in the air as I write.

As a psychotherapist, energy worker and empath—one who’s served a long apprenticeship, learned the ropes, and is now teaching other empaths to do the same—I reckon that “The World” could do with a bit of a shaking up of all the assumptions it makes.

The world makes a lot of assumptions about those that it chooses—often with a bit of an eye roll and a barely disguised sneer—to call empaths.

See, we empaths never did choose that word, “The World” did—kind of like it used to call wise women with gifts of healing “witches” in years gone by.

Does that seem a preposterous comparison? Oh, but I’m deadly serious here. Don’t get my empath’s hackles up too much or I might just turn you into a frog!

The other day, I read a piece by someone who said they felt like throwing up every time they read the word “empath” in the title of any article. Wow, strong words. Strong reaction. Hey, I wonder, do we have another group of people being discriminated against here? A subtle undercover bit of scapegoating going on?

See, that’s how it starts, discrimination. We start to rubbish, to mock, to think it’s okay to diminish and ignore. To ridicule. To make a certain kind of person a figure of fun.

We stop listening. Instead, we put our hands over our ears and go blah blah blah. And, in that way that we unconsciously scapegoat those who are different to us, we then start to make assumptions instead. We stop being open to what they have to say.

Once you’ve made someone ridiculous, it’s a bit of a slippery slope after that.

So I’m here to try to right the balance a bit. I’m here to say to anyone who feels that way about those the world calls “empaths” that they’re missing the point.

And I want to tell you why.

As a psychotherapist, I can say without any shadow of a doubt that the one thing that we all need—yes, the ‘N’ word, “need”—is to be listened to and understood. For someone to really get what we’re feeling. Note: feeling. Those of us who are more comfortable living in our heads rather than our hearts don’t like the ‘N’ word very much. It makes us feel weak, vulnerable. And we don’t like vulnerable. We feel way more in control with “strong.”

But we do, of-course, secretly envy those who can let themselves actually be vulnerable. Scapegoating is always double-edged!

That, of course, is part of what we don’t like about empaths: they do feelings. Whoa, how scary is that! They make us face what we’re frightened of.

Those bits of us we don’t go near. Ever!

The other reason Empaths scare us is because they see stuff. They see into us and through us. You can’t pull the wool over an Empath’s eyes.

They know it straight away. Witches all over again, right?

Okay, okay, I know we can be irritating at times, and over-sensitive, some of us are unbearably self-pitying, even, before we learn the ropes. Sure, we have lots to work out and learn. Mostly, how to hold, contain and transmute low vibrational energy into that of a higher vibration.

And we can become amazingly, awesomely good at that!

I get fed up just as much as the next person when I read articles that tell empaths to stay away from people and take to their bed every time there’s a full moon! But these people aren’t empaths yet: they’re what I’d call “Identifiers.” They’re busy soaking everything up as if it belongs to them, when actually most of it belongs to everyone else!

But once we empaths have done the work, we’re unstoppable! Trust me! We’re utterly mind-blowing!

So bear with me just a while? Let me explain a few things that only empaths start out knowing. Things that would make the world a far easier place for us all to exist in if only everyone else could try learning them too.

Can I give it a go?

First, we know that this is an emotional Universe, one that feels. You can’t talk about a loving Universe in one breath, and then talk about a Universe that responds purely to thoughts. It’s a contradiction.

And if you don’t see why it’s a contradiction, that’s why the world needs empaths!

Let me say it again. This is an emotional Universe. A Universe which responds to the vibration of emotion. Emotion which emanates from our unconscious feelings and beliefs. Why else do you think we have ended up living in a reality where everyone’s busy trying hard to think and project the “right thoughts” yet we have managed to create a reality that reflects anything but!

Ever stop to think about that one? We’re so caught up in thoughts and thinking here if the West, busy rationalizing and intellectualizing everything, we tend to forget that important fact. Why is it that the planet doesn’t particularly reflect the positive thoughts and intentions that people reckon they’re putting out there?

I’ll tell you why: it’s because it isn’t about our thoughts. It’s about what we’re projecting out there that we’re often completely unaware of.

By the way, know who can help with that? Best of all?

The empath that the world reckons deserves to be ridiculed for being over-sensitive!

See, empaths pick up everyone else’s stuff. The stuff that everyone else is busy trying to deny and push away? Know where it gets pushed? Into empaths.

Yep!

And then the world blames them for it. All the while, that empath is actually doing what everyone else could helpfully be taking responsibility for doing: tuning in properly to what’s really going on!

Starting to hear any of this yet? Let’s push on.

Let’s consider a bit further what the world could learn from empaths if it could get past its iron-clad defences against feelings.

The world could try to do what empaths have no choice about:

1) It could start understanding that to be fully conscious is to feel, not just think.

2) It could start taking responsibility for working through its own feelings instead of making empaths carry them.

3) It could start living more in the Heart instead of in the Head.

4) It could re-instate empaths as being worthy of respect and appreciation—after all, they’ve carried the world’s disavowed mess for a long time.

5) It could learn how to be mindful and aware, open and emotionally intelligent.

And if only the world would start taking its personal responsibility more seriously, it might free up empaths to do what they’re really good at!

How does that sound? How about we all give it a go?

Who knows…it could even make the world a better place!

 

@ Janny Juddly 2017

The Therapist in my Pocket