The pressure of the first blog for DBL, ugh! What do I say, how do I say it? The truth of the matter is this is not actually the first blog. Like many moments in my life, it has been running around inside my head for years. It has all been a series of events that has lead me here. So, instead of having all of this guilt, shame and judgement on myself for not starting sooner, for taking this long to get started, I am deciding quite simply to begin, again.
I am a girl or as Helen Keller would say, I am a quilt of flaws sewn together with good intentions. That would explain me perfectly, right now. As I struggle to find my place, who I am and what I want to be in the world, I find myself getting curious about so many different aspects of my journey to date, and then I stumble upon the mythical structure of Joseph Campbell. I first hear about this at a lecture by Elizabeth Gilbert and the structure of it has had me mulling it over and over throughout the years. The 12 stages of The Hero's Journey is one that has played out in my life, over and over again, and I am sure as you read on in yours too! It is basically a character arc, and structure that is used in some screen writing that we have seen played out in movies such as Wizard of Oz and of course, Star Wars. A structure that if one looks closely at could seem like it is alive & present in our life today, or maybe just in mine!
Step 1: The Ordinary World - oh yes! The safety of my normal life, but oh so important. My first child is born, and here I am living the dream. What I failed to realize was the dream involved routine. Wake up, feed the baby, burb the baby, watch the baby sleep, you sleep, repeat.
Step 2: The Call to Adventure - This is the disruption of the “normal life” and if I was to follow that specific time period in my life the call to adventure would have been to open a yoga studio.
Step 3: The Refusal of the Call - Where you here the calling, your intuition is telling you to do something, but you tell this voice to be quiet. This was an, oh no! I was not ready to open it and neither was my husband. Bad idea, bad, bad!
Step 4: The Meeting of the Mentor - This character hands down would have been my business partner, Kinndli McCollum. She provided me with just enough to dispel my self-doubts, pulling me, creating this world that she claimed could not exist without my participation. Providing me with the courage to take the necessary steps.
Step 5: The Crossing of the Threshold - Ready to take on the quest and finally crossing from the world I knew into the unknown and the opening of the studio was the moment where things as they were could never be the same. I was now willing to act toward my calling!
Step 6: The Test, Allies and Enemies - Just as I am out of my comfort zone there are so many more obstacles that were thrown in my way. People who felt a yoga studio was a bad idea, challenges with land lords, etc. This is where I needed to determine who was with me, and who was against me!
Step 7: The approach to the Inmost Cave - The inmost cave is not a “new” thing. It is a common fear and doubt that pops up for me over and over again. The fear of commitment and trusting, for me at this time it was my marriage. How could I be the person I needed to be if I was unsure and unwilling to do the work?
Step 8: The Ordeal - Only through some form of "death" can the hero be re-born, in my case it was the separation between my husband and I. We parted ways, he stayed in his life and I continued across the threshold, really with commitment to my family or my original life. Not very Cinderella of me, I know, yet completely true.
Step 9: The Reward (The seizing of the Sword) - The personal challenge that I overcame and transformed, in essence my reward was a clear insight that I can indeed be with my husband. He was my treasure and my reward. I mean, I am skipping a TON of events here, for another blog perhaps ;)
Step 10: The Road Block - This is the point in the story where the hero, despite everything being thrown at them, FINALLY commits or in my case chooses between their own personal objectives and that of the higher cause. For me, the higher cause was my family.
Step 11: The Resurrection - Also know as the final battle, the time where you still have to fight for it and be clear in what you have to give up in order to gain something bigger. I am clear that my self doubt and fear of being “ordinary” is what holds me back from achieving my higher purpose at home, where my feet are.
Step 12: Return Elixir - And at last, returning to the ordinary world a transformed human being. This is where my husband and I settled in, the yoga business thrived and we had our second child. The beauty of this all is, as per Don Miguel Ruiz, I am the author of the story and have to power to re-author it and BOY did I re-write it. I have at least another 3 sequels that followed.
If I think about it I am in the middle of yet another hero’s journey - I guess the power is in understanding who I am being and the role I am playing in it. What's your hero's journey?
Welcome to the first blog of DBL. I have no idea what we will accomplish together and am anxious to find out! Still my wiser self silently whispers to me, slow down and enjoy the journey. As a dear friend Kari Granger once said to me, “slow is smooth and smooth is fast!”