When I was 27 I met a man who looked straight through me and my armour as he asked,

“What would it take for you to go home, emancipated?”

A very profound question that made no sense for nearly ten years. In the past sixteen months I have been working on that very thing, mostly without knowing it. But I’m jumping ahead….

When I was a little girl I would paint for hours with my 8 colour tin paint set, complete with it’s crappy brush. These were definitely my first “master pieces”. In all likelihood they were muddy, confused and trapped in the middle of the page, but they captured my pure bliss in the act of expressing myself. They were my pure joy. I remember the amazing feeling of the gooshy, squishy finger paints we used in Kindergarten, and how much I loved covering the whole sheet until it was a dark mass of greens, blues and blacks.

At five I KNEW I was a divine spark from the Uni-verse, a child of God, I felt that blissful connection with Christ every time I expressed myself. Singing, dancing, painting, drawing, arts & crafts, running, spinning, swinging, these were all ways I expressed my bliss for being on the earth, in this body, embodied, a beautiful expression of God’s will.

We all come into this life with that connection, and most of us over time lose it. Sometimes we think we chose to move away from the divine, but in my estimation most of us have it “beat” out of us one way or another.

At this same age I suffered unspeakable trauma. Which in no small part shifted the course of my life. I had no skills to cope, and the one person I turned to couldn’t fix something she wouldn’t accept as part of our her reality. So I stuffed it down.

Stuffing only serves to diminish our essence and dim down our inner light. This is how it was, in large part, beat out of me. I stuffed it down for over twenty years, dimming my own light, yet somehow managing to use that rage, that anger, that darkness to fuel my creative brilliance. The light is always capable of pushing past the darkness, until finally after September 11th it split me wide open. I have spent the past ten years fighting to get back to the knowing I had at five, fighting to come home, emancipated.

What did it take to get here? Ten years of growth, much of it hard won. For I have largely done the deep digging and heavy lifting on my own. I am my own hero, there was no one to rescue me but me. Now to be clear and fair, I have had much support, when I could get out of my own way long enough to accept other peoples love and kindnesses. For those people and those moments I am deeply humbled and beyond grateful.

In these last 16 months I have been working very consciously at befriending the darkness, riding the waves of my emotions, cleaning up relationships, letting go of my need to make others wrong so that I might feel right, knowing I am not now, nor was I ever “broken”, learning to take no for an answer, actively pursuing those things like singing and painting that gave me such joy at five, choosing to be in my body – instead of my head all the time, letting someone love me the way that he loves me and watching how that has fostered intense passion which fuels my creativity and the resonance of that passion shows in my new paintings.

I keep asking, “How does it get any better than this?” I have no idea but I remain in the question, because once again I am thriving, radiating, because I KNOW I am now, and have always been a divine spark from the Uni-verse. Emancipation. Here I am, emancipated, and home. Home in my skin, that is to say embodied, in love with life, my life, and allowing that to flow up, out and all around me. Love IS the way home.