I’ll never forget the first day of life coach training.
I was miserable. Throughout my seeking, I had come to believe that we each have a unique gift to offer, what Michale Trotta calls our original medicine, what Bill Plotkin and Geneen Marie Haugen call our mythopoetic identity, our purpose for this life. This continues to be a foundational principle for my work. Only at that time, I feared I was the only one left out of this sacred plan. I had no idea what my purpose was. I didn’t join life coach training to become a life coach, I joined because I needed life training. I was lost.
I had been lost once before, an experience that I had already considered to actually be the greatest gift of my life.
Everything was peachy. I was a vegetable farmer- digging the hard work of harvest, the tender care of transplanting, and the full belly bounty of the great Earth.
Life was planned. I had a handsome partner who was excited to help me launch my own farm business. Marriage wasn’t far off. I was on my way to the land of milk and honey. I called my sweetie for a light chat over lunch, a conversation that shockingly, concluded with the end of our relationship.
Suddenly, nothing was true anymore.
Somehow, I was born with the inclination to slip beneath the still surface on the well of my grief. I didn’t resist it at all, and I discovered something incredible. Well, many things: wells of self-healing, a library of soulful counsel, and the magical powers of plants, the moon.
I learned what it’s like to die, to shed an identity.
I deeply and utterly changed - into a whole-er, more authentic, more loving, more emotional, less analytical version of myself. I wouldn’t trade the pain for the world, in fact the pain, the grief, the questioning, did all the work.
I believe that the bad things that happen to us, as tragic and painful as they are, can be gifts. They may also be evidence of a deeply unjust world. But they can be a doorway into deeper development and connection.
I now understand my break up to have provided me with a soul encounter, followed by an intense period of trying to manifest the messages I received from within.
But then I started to listen to the messages of our culture, and also to my own reeling psyche, which was ready for some form of stability. So when I signed up for life coach training, I was living a predictable life that my soul couldn’t stomach. I had nurtured an incredible transformation in response to a major change, but I didn’t feel that my living was truly honoring the person I had become.
When the instructor called for a volunteer to demonstrate the basic coaching model (Martha Beck’s anyway), I jumped. I told her a version of this story, to which she replied, “So you believe you should know what to do with your life?” Yes! Of course I believed that! Shouldn’t we all?
Well, no. It is highly uncommon in our culture to know this – we don’t cultivate relationships with our souls, we have little patience beyond instant gratification, and we live in a world we feel powerless in.
Turns out there were lots of good reasons I should not have known what I wanted to do with my life – for instance, I had just started a life coach training program!
I have come to see that deep longing is actually crucial to the process of embodiment I was seeking, and that knowing what to do is actually a journey rather than a destination.
Needless to say, this training changed my life and how I think about my life, and enlivened me to share my story and my capacity to help others live more easeful more beautiful lives.
Ready to bring what had I learned into the world, I longed for another message from my soul and undertook a vision quest with the Animas Valley Institute. Many more posts to come on this wonderful adventure, but a central lesson learned was that purpose, our original medicine, what we were born to offer, are what we walk through, day by day, breath by breath.
If we have the courage to step towards soul, what unfolds is beyond our wildest imaginations, for fulfillment and for justice. I'm following the trail of my purpose here at Earth Axis Within and I invite you along.
Wishing you transformation,