It was Christmas time 2008.
I had been on over twenty job interviews, been one of the final candidates several times for positions, had a few clients here and there as a counselor.
My income was in the tank.
I had supportive gifts and loans, but on the actual holiday of Christmas and the several days before, I had scraped together everything I had to pay the December mortgage, heat and light bills, phone bill and garbage bill.
There was about $108 in my bank account and I needed to use some of it for groceries.
I look back and still impulsively think of it as the worst Christmas ever.
I went to Goodwill and bought clothes and some stocking stuffers for my kids. At least I had some presents.
The feeling on the inside was of terrible sickness. Like I was at the tail end of a sad story of losing everything.
I was already thinking about all the bills that would be due again soon, and I had no way to get my January mortgage payment together which would be due in a couple of weeks.
This was just….a total and complete mess.
I couldn’t sleep well.
I had never had this experience before, either. So it wasn’t like it was a repeat story I had already lived before.
This was like falling off a cliff, and like I had been falling, falling, falling for at least a year.
But one thing I did that was different in that month, was The Work in a very intensive, focused way. With me as the inquirer and a practiced facilitator supporting me through my process.
I had already done The Work on my own, and with friends and partners willing to trade sessions.
In fact, I had done it a ton.
With a kind of freaked out, terrified, quick urgency. Must. Understand. Now. Two seconds away from Panic Button.
But I had not paid for facilitation. Are you kidding? Did you see my bank account? That would have been a stupid expense, I had to save everything for heat, shelter and food…right?
Wrong. (Thank you amazing Martha Creek, dear friend and colleague and guide, for working with me).
I considered the absolute WORST THING that could happen. The imminent failure. The destruction and loss of all I knew. Having no home. Having even fewer options.
My mom said if I really, really needed it….I was welcome in her home for as long as it took to get back on my feet again.
I thought if I lost my home and really had nowhere to live that I could call MINE, it would be *HORRIBLE*!!!
My loving facilitator said “is that true?”
Oh. Well…..YES! Of course! Being homeless in my 40s? Awful.
No. Huh. No.
I considered what about moving in with my mother would be so terrible wrong, horrible, gut-wrenching and dreadful.
It took a little while….but then I began to laugh.
Woman sleeping at her mother’s house, with her two incredible children who she loved.
That was the whole story.
Without that belief, a lightness shifted inside that was stunning.
The next day I called my mom and we had a wonderful, intimate, honest conversation and laughed and laughed.
And then some really incredible other things happened….that I tell from time to time….but it would have been OK if they didn’t happen.
The story could have gone any way.
The way it went was a new job was invented for me part-time, and people started calling me for more and more appointments as a facilitator of The Work, and I offered workshops and meetings and classes and teleclasses….
….and I never moved in with my mother.
In fact, in lightening speed by comparison to how I saw it from the dark side, I paid off ALL my debts and loans and home equity line of credit and credit cards, and even quit that part time job.
Now, when I look back, I know it was not the worst Christmas ever.
Maybe it was the best.
I’m quite sure it is a spectacular story….and who doesn’t like a great story, with an exciting plot, awesome characters, enormous drama, and an inspiring outcome?
The real outcome being, of course….I don’t know.
Now that’s really the best story.
If you have fearful, irritated, unhappy money stories….then we’re beginning an 8 week teleclass drilling into the meaning of money, losing money, needing money, having money, suffering around money, hoping for money.
I offer an exercise via email every week, a question to answer to help you get clearer about what’s going on with you and money.
These are the same questions I noticed rose up for me around money and all it meant.
We’ll look at how we feel about ourselves and out capacity to find, earn or receive money, and then other peoples’ money or lack of money, and what we think money will really, really give us.
I love doing this class myself, every time.
The money story is reviewed, revealed in a new way, and everyone gets to hear the most marvelous new scenes, dramatic effects, or torrid affairs, from all of us doing The Work together and becoming aware of how believing thoughts about money brings on suffering…..
Join us, there’s still room. We’ll meet Tuesdays 5:15-6:45 pm starting January 6th. Write me if you have questions.
“I’ve never seen a work or money problem that didn’t turn out to be a thinking problem. I used to believe that I needed money to be happy. Even when I had a lot, I was often sick with the fear that something terrible would happen and I would lose it….After I found The Work inside myself – after it found me – I began to notice that I always had the perfect amount of money for me right now, even when I had little or none. Happiness is a clear mind. A clear and sane mind knows how to live, how to work, what e-mails to send, what phone calls to make, and what to do to create what it wants without fear….You don’t ever need more money than you have. When you understand this, you begin to realize that you already have all the security you wanted money to give you in the first place. It’s a lot easier to make money from this position.” ~ Byron Katie
Much love, Grace