So I have been a lover of the law of attraction and everything it represents for a while now. And while I’ve had my ups and downs, my “oops!” moments and my “aha!” moments, I’ve been slowly moving forward, making incremental progress, learning some hard lessons and seeing deeper into myself than I ever could have imagined going in. Last night was another one of those massive info dumps that feels so much like a meteor crashed into my mind planet, and my ecosystem is going to have to rebuild itself again.
If you’ve been reading for any length of time, it’s quite obvious that I am obsessed with making a home of my own. Whether that’s a tiny house on wheels, a cob house, a beautiful old Craftsman bungalow… I just feel this inner longing for *home* the way that normal women who don’t, as Margaret Cho put it, ovulate sand might long for children. I cry about it – a lot. Not like, oh boo hoo, I want a fancy house to be a status symbol cry, but deep, profound sadness that can only be described as being adrift on a violent ocean, yearning for home. I want my safe harbor. I *need* safe harbor. My ship has broken apart in the storm.
As much as I have tried to be positive about it, I’ve struggled. I’ve done all the envisioning exercises I could think of – I printed out house listings I was in love with and hung them up where I could see them; I bought a few books on tiny house building and a couple of small tools that I didn’t already have as gestures that I was going to DO this; I bought beautiful vintage light switch covers to put in my new home; I said mantras like “I have everything I need and want available to me.” And by the way, when you are paying for groceries with pennies from the penny jar and behind on rent, dropping $10 on a tool you don’t need yet is a big deal. I thought I was sending clear signals of faith to the universe, so things were sure to happen! And yet. I would look at those house listings and think, good things like that don’t happen to you. Other people get to have a home of your dreams, but not you. I felt like I was torturing myself a little. Real estate was already way beyond my income – and it’s only been getting more expensive. But I kept looking at it.
I would get bitter about how easy it seemed other people had it – either now or in the past. My most teeth-gnashing knowledge was that when my parents were my age, my father earned more at his job, with only a high school diploma, than I have ever earned in my life (and I’m not talking about inflation-adjusted dollars – I mean in unchanging numbers), plus they had my mother’s income as well. He wasn’t a great employee – I grew up hearing tales of he and his friends going out drinking during their extended lunch breaks and going back to the office sloshed, or sometimes not going back at all (and yet, no one got fired for this, while I’ve been fired for showing up to start my shift ten minutes late one time too many). With the gobs of money (in my eyes) from his dial-it-in job, he bought a two-bedroom house that cost five thousand dollars less than he made in a year, in a nice neighborhood in the suburbs. Cars cost a few grand. And yet, due largely to his gambling habits, my parents lost everything – the house, the car, everything. When opportunity after opportunity had been handed to them as a gift from on high, they squandered it. And it pissed me the fuck off.
Now, I get that it pissed me off because it’s all a matter of perspective. To a kid that lives in a shanty town made of cardboard and spends their days fetching water from three miles away and can’t go to school, I’m the one who has had opportunity after opportunity handed to me as a gift from on high. Just as to my parents, it wasn’t a big deal to have what they had – jobs were plentiful and stuff was cheap; the economy was good and don’t all the Mad Men drink cocktails in the office? Normal! Why would they have seen it any differently? But I was so angry. That anger said, I wouldn’t squander those blessings if I had them. I wouldn’t take them for granted!
Which was all just a great big block to me ever getting any kind of blessings that I dreamed of.
Now, I tried gratitude exercises – but I felt like I was giving thanks for largely little things. Somehow I thought that would translate into big things. Well, it didn’t. Because I was thinking of them as little things. Hence the incremental progress instead of large leaps forward in the physical realm.
I tried making myself feel like I already had the thing I wanted – and envision it in detail. I was good at the envisioning. I am a writer/artist, after all. I came up with house design after house design after house design. I thought, this is the one! I’m going to get some money, and build this house. I did it with cars, too – you can see the Smart Car picture in an earlier post from me going to their website and designing the one I wanted.
But did I feel like I actually owned that house? Despite all my mantras, no, I did not. The car? Not that, either. For a long time, I was sad when I saw cars that I liked – I felt like I was being teased with something I couldn’t have again.
For the past several months, I have been sending out love when I see a car I like (for the record, Universe, that’s Smart Cars, VW bugs, Mini Coopers, and Subaru hatchback station wagons. Yes, I have to have the one big car outlier, because that’s how I roll). Now it’s not forced, and I honestly smile when I see one and feel like the Universe is smiling back at me instead of teasing me. It’s saying, “Hey look, here’s that cool thing you like!” So I feel a lot better on that front. But I was still at a loss as to how I was going to earn the money (because that’s what I was focused on) to build or buy my dream home… or my dream car. The writing muse has been flirting with me but I don’t have a book near completion. No publishers have responded to my short stories or found my blog and said, “Hey, we like your writing! Want a book contract?” I wasn’t hearing back anything from jobs I had applied to. I didn’t suddenly have a sewing tutorial or cat video go viral on YouTube. I wasn’t selling out of inventory at craft fairs or Etsy, or having people beating down my door to buy Beachbody products en masse. So, barring a lotto win (I probably buy a ticket once every two months or so), I couldn’t see a way out. It was “I need,” and “I want” …which is, say it with me, NOT what you should be thinking if you are trying to attract things to you.
In other words, I was dialing in my manifestation efforts, like I had always felt my dad had a dial it in job. I was saying what I wanted but not feeling it. I was faking it ‘til I made it. I was smiling on the outside but crying on the inside. But just like they say, if you smile even when you don’t feel like it, the action will often lead to you honestly feeling happy. Well, the project-positivity-project has finally taken root, and I truly do feel positive about my life and the future.
What brought this on? Well, I’ve been reading lots of books on manifestation, the law of attraction, and “new thought,” as they call it. One of the pillars of these teachings is that you have everything available to you in the universe. If it exists, you can manifest it. If you can dream it, it exists. “Hold,” you say. “What about people who dreamed up things that never existed before, like inventors?” Well, those inventions were made, weren’t they? The components for anything you can ever dream are there – we just have to lasso them in. The elements that made the resources that made the parts that made the first computer always existed – it’s just that no one put all those things together to create it until it was first imagined and designed, the international trade network was there, and prior inventions that were necessary for its creation – like electricity being harnessed – had been realized.
I understood this premise on an intellectual level, but I didn’t know it in my bones. I didn’t feel like, okay, I have access to anything, my abundance is limitless, the world is my oyster! Mantra after mantra did not seem to be infusing it into my core any more than I can learn through osmosis.
Last night was the shift that changed everything.
What triggered it? Another Rhonda Byrne book? Source material? A great meditation session? Nope. It was one of those viral videos full of NASA footage, stirring music, and Neil deGrasse Tyson talking about how we are all stardust.
I had seen videos like that before – in fact, I think I had even heard that particular quote by Neil deGrasse Tyson before. I loved them both, and thought they were beautiful at the time. But just like sometimes, you read a book for the second time and all new things jump out at you, or it speaks to you in an entirely different way as you are at a different place in your life, this video hit me like a ton of bricks. And I cried (this post is full of crying, isn’t it? I swear I am not a geyser 24/7). But it wasn’t “I’m sad,” crying, or even “I yearn,” crying – it was understanding crying. It was feeling connected with everything and everyone in the universe crying. It was a beautiful moment crying. It was gratefulness crying. I actually felt it. It was a spiritual experience. I felt myself expanding.
And in that moment, I truly, for the first time, knew that I was one with everything in the universe. Not just on an intellectual level – but in my bones. In my heart. In my soul. I knew I had access to anything and everything. And I had gratitude of such a profound depth that it eclipsed all my little gratitude games and mantras. I’ve had a great day today, and more is to come. I don’t say that to mean, I hope I have more great days. I just know that I will.
This blog is to say, don’t lose hope! Keep at it. Even if you are not feeling it at first, it will come. Read, study, meditate. Do all the mantras and exercises. All those little efforts will prepare you for the much larger breakthroughs, like paving the road for a manifestation superhighway. I think I just opened my on-ramp. And I’m driving along in my dream car (I’m looking at you, Einstein)!