I, like many in my area, grew up in a family of secrets. Being in a primarily Italian and Jewish neighborhood the secrets just added to the drama of day-to-day life. Mostly under the guise of “white lies” the snippets of omissions and outright lies were usually well-intentioned if misguided. “Your father doesn’t need to know.” “It would give your grandmother a heart attack.” If you tell your sister while we’re still alive we’ll kill you.”
Wait, what? Kill me? Indeed. In my first book, A Life Aligned, I write about a past move to Florida and in telling the story of how the Universe supported me despite perceived odds I recounted how my parents helped me with the moving truck expenses. It was an important piece of the story, about how oft we have to grow through accepting help without judgement of its source when the Universe extends itself with what might feel like uncomfortable solutions as it offers to bring forth opportunities to fulfill our desires.
My parents had come to visit my new how in Santa Fé and I shared a bit of the book with them as a surprise. Well, the surprise was on me! When they read the part about their help and how the Universe worked through them on my behalf, they were taken aback and indeed said that if I told my sister while they were still alive that they had helped me, they would kill me. Of course they waited until they were back in New York to hand down my sentence – we never did communicate well directly. I dutifully rewrote the chapter. In retrospect, big mistake.
So growing up in a world of lies by omission and commission that were taught as a normal thing, mostly to protect someone else from some unseen something that might by off-chance befall them, it was easy to hide my sexuality as well. I became a master of avoidance and perfected the technique of being vague. I didn’t come out to my parents until my early 20s and I never came out to my grandmother (It would kill her). I have told a lot of people since then and in every case they have fared pretty well.
Although I’ve had hints all my life it is only now at 56 years that I fully understand the destructiveness of the secrets I was taught to perpetuate in my life. My spiritual path is built on Law of Attraction and I have come to know that any misalignment with who I Am, no matter the reason or intention, is a step off the path of living the life that I chose in this incarnation. In the best case scenario such misalignment stops my growth. At worst, it takes me backwards and leaves me unfulfilled. Ivan Illych said to his wife on his deathbed, after having lived a horribly misaligned life, “What if my whole life has been wrong?”
It is easy to spot misalignment. Illness, malaise, discord with others, a vague feeling of just not fitting into your own skin very well, being a job with obstacle after obstacle, having unsatisfying relationships of any kind… these are all signs of diverging from who you really are. I listen to my mom at 83 years old talk every Sunday about her aches and pains. She not-so-contentedly explains them away with, “I’m getting old, what I can I do? I don’t like it but it’s part of getting old.” I love my mom and it hurts my heart to know that her experience could be very different if she would allow herself to be who is really is – a healthy 83-year-old with much to offer herself and in her world. Yes she is resigned to, “getting old.” That is not who is really is but it is the role she has taken on. And the misalignment shows.
I invite you take a little inventory this week. 1) Ask yourself: In what way(s) do I feel “out of synch? What about my life experience feels bad? What feels out of line? If I were a car and took myself to the shop for an alignment how would I describe the problem?
2) Make note of your answers and then ask a few more questions: What is one thing I could do today to be truer to who I Am? – And do it. And tomorrow, ask, What is one more thing I can do? – And do it.
And do this each day for a week.
3) Then revisit the first set of questions you asked. How has your experience begun to shift? You just might be amazed!
With Blessings and Gratitude,
From Santa Fé, New Mexico
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