Did you catch the full moon Tuesday night? AH-mazing! I’ve been joining a small & growing group of buddies for night hikes on the full moon. Not only is it a fun way to get outside with friends and family it feels good to plug into to the cycles and rhythms of the earth in this way. My kids are now aware of the phases of the moon, how the moon affects the tides, and all kinds of moon “science” because of questions these hikes of inspired. Personally, I always like to see what the astrologers are saying about the full moon in preparation for these outings and the conversations that follow.
Over time I’ve learned that the new moon is time of intention setting and the full moon is a time of actualization.
I stumbled on a note about this month’s full moon from astrologer Virginia Rosenberg. Her take is that it is a time for realizing dreams. I especially love this excerpt from her post,
“Dreams do not belong to individuals. They are spiritual forces that connect us to our hearts, each other, our ancestors, and infinity.”
She goes on to talk about how not all dreams are meant to come to fruition through you. This reminded me of my own experience. Last year at a women’s gathering, I had a clairvoyant tarot reading. That’s not something I’ve ever done before but I was so drawn to this woman that she could have said she was teaching belly dancing and I would have signed up. I don’t know how or why but I knew that I was supposed to talk to her. Almost as soon as the reading started she said she could see green all around me. Trees, plants, grasses, and the ocean nearby. I knew what she was talking about. It was Costa Rica. This was the year I was supposed to be leading more retreats in Costa Rica. This was the year I was supposed to be getting closer to my dream. But none of it was happening.
I’m not sure why everything spilled out of me so easily. Perhaps I was fragile, exhausted, or just in need of being heard but I shared my dream of building a retreat center on the land we purchased in Costa Rica 13 years prior. I shared how initially everything had come together quickly and easily but as I’d become a wife, mother, business owner, and moved to Santa Barbara my dream had languished. Something that at one time had felt so real, so visceral now felt distant and incredibly hard. I told her how for years I was sure of what I wanted but now I wasn’t sure anymore. I lamented that maybe I had let too much time pass by. Maybe my deep knowing about the land and its purpose were wrong.
Her answer was interesting and turned everything I’d been feeling and thinking upside down. She proposed that perhaps I hadn’t chosen the land as much as the land had chosen me. Perhaps it had its own purpose. She then advised me to go to the land and to complete a ritual there. She told me to ask the land what it wanted. She also said that if the land had its own purpose it might choose someone else to fulfill it. That shook me a bit. Would the land give up on me?
I recalled having read Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert and her re-telling of a story she had heard about Mary Oliver running home to capture a piece of poetry before it left her and went on to find to someone else. Gilbert also of her own experience of having an idea for a book, complete with characters and plot twists only she never wrote it. Later she would learn that someone else had written almost the exact same book.
So the idea that the land might choose someone else wasn’t crazy to me. But the notion that the land had chosen me to begin with was completely new and yet it fit perfectly with my actual experience. Standing on the land for the first time I had never had a feeling like that before. I saw clearly that I would build a retreat center there even though I had never actually been on a retreat let alone been to a retreat center. I have often commented that I had no idea where that desire came from only that it was so strong I became obsessed with it.
I felt relief at this new perspective. Going to the land and finding out what it wanted from me now struck me as the exact right thing to do. Plus, we already had a trip to Costa Rica planned so I wouldn’t have to wait long to get my answer. Never mind that I knew nothing about rituals or how to conduct one, I’d figure that part out.
At sunset on August 11th, 2018 on the new moon together with my family, we spread out a blanket and sat on our land. We thanked it for being a part of our lives and for bringing us back year after year to visit it. We buried a crystal in the earth and we pulled cards from the beautiful Moon Deck I had purchased for the occasion.
I pulled Clarity: I welcome clear vision and inspired action.
(I almost laughed out loud. I could put that on my business card.)
After we’d each pulled a card, we wrapped up our blanket and left. The next morning I woke up early and I looked at the cards we had each pulled and read all the meanings. In truth I was no closer to understanding what the land was asking of me. But it didn’t matter. I felt at complete peace. In that ritual I had experienced deep gratitude for the land and all it has taught me about life. Without the land I would never have asked my mom and my sister to join me in purchasing the land which in turn led me to leaving graduate school and joining them in their real estate business. My sheer terror at failing in this new career coupled with my obsession over making the money to pay for the land pushed me to start my first accountability group and if I had not done that, I surely never would have started Accountability Works. And then I may never have started creating workshops and leading my own retreats.
The land taught me (and my husband) the power of vision and without that we would not have had the guts to move our family to Santa Barbara when the logical and practical choice was to stay put. While I was thinking about how I would shape the land to my vision, the land was shaping me.
In that ritual, I made friends with the land. It ceased to be a burden or a source of guilt. We are inextricably connected and I am sure that the fact that the land found me when I was most lost, was no accident. l have to agree with Virginia when she says,
“The dreams that are meant to guide our way will find us.”
I share this now because I wonder how many others out there feel the burden of the unaccomplished something when perhaps a shift in perspective will reveal the gifts that were there for you all along.