Oh what a weekend I just had!
I drove up to the quaint town of Prescott, AZ to hang with two of my galpals; Wendy and Ann, then go to a Treasure Map workshop. In fact, it was the 30th installment of this workshop created by my former therapist Wendy McCord who now lives up there in Prescott. And the last. She’s retiring this workshop now after last weekend.
Ann and I attended the Dance for Universal Peace that Wendy helped facilitate Sat. evening–this is her guitar 😉
me, Ann, Wendy
I look forward to spending more time with these gals this year. We had an absolute blast!
I did my first treasure map with Wendy, back in the other Wendy’s studio Bodyworks. Wendy W. my dear longtime friend, owned a yoga/dance studio in my same complex for around 15 years. We became fast friends from the moment I took one of her classes and formed the organization “Business Owners Who Know Nothing About Business”. We usually held our meetings at local coffee houses and discussed the state of affairs of our personal lives more than anything. Occasionally we’d lead each other blindly on how to move forward with our businesses, neither of us ever having taken a business class in our lives. Yet somehow, we managed to keep ours afloat through many many storms.
Wendy W. lives in Sedona now (imagine that!) and works at the world famous Mi Amo Spa at the Enchantment Resort up there. Our lives will now take on a new chapter living (at least part time, me) in the same town again. I love it.
She told me about Wendy’s workshop as I’d not attended for years but that doesn’t mean I’ve not been making my treasure maps on my own. In fact the one I’m retiring right now has been on my wall for about four years. I spent all day with a friend making it in my living room.
I’ve had a hard time letting that one go simply because I’ve loved it so much. Yet after taking the plunge in to this workshop, I realized why it had outgrown itself. I’ll detail some of those things in a moment.
A treasure map (also called vision board or dream board) is a tool to manifest dreams. You use pictures and words and create a collage of things you’d like to see happen in your future then hang it in a vicinity where you will glance at it often. I say my treasure map works on me vs the other way around.
The most magical images, to me, are those that I use simply because I love them or are drawn to them for some unknown reason and just have to put them on the map. That’s really speaking to the unconscious which is where I believe dreams manifest are born.
On Sunday Wendy asked any of us to share stories of how our treasure maps have manifested in our lives before we embarked on the meat of the workshop.
I got to thinking about my current one.
Last winter when I was down for a week at Rancho La Puerta for New Year’s, I brought a memoir with me called What Remains by Carole Radziwill. I was so completely moved by her story and I couldn’t put it down. I’d sit for hours in the mornings and evenings in my cozy window seat reading until sadly it was finished. I remember sitting there for a long time just staring in to space with tears in my eyes as that sad and compelling story ended. I just felt/feel such a connection to her. This gal knows tragedy and still has managed to maintain her spark. This is someone I’d like to emulate and can relate to.
I met a lovely woman on that trip who was a recent widow and gave her the book after I finished it. She later wrote me and told me how it had also fed her soul. Camaraderie living on.
I came home after that trip and wanted to know more about her so researched her blog a bit and ran in to a very familiar photo to me. This one:
a wedding photo of Carole and her husband
Yes, Carole Radziwill had been on my treasure map for about three years at that point yet I had no idea it was her. I ran upstairs to see and yes, there she was. Then I glanced above and there she was again.
I rarely put two of the same person or image on my board but in this case, I put two pictures of this couple. I know exactly why I did it too. I loved the way he was looking at her. I thought I want to have a man look at me like that.
I can’t describe the feeling this gave me. That kind of magical I’m living in a dream yet awake kind of feeling.
When I shared this story on Sunday I also said “it’s not exactly a manifestation but…” and Wendy stopped me and said “oh yes it is, you manifested a feeling that all is right in the world and you are exactly where are supposed to be”.
Yes, that was the feeling. And a feeling like I’m not alone. This woman had been influencing me for years and I just ran in to her again. It’s truly an amazing feeling.
I wrote her a letter detailing this whole deal. I hope she got it. 🙂
The first part of Wendy’s workshop involves doing a lot of writing. You write all about your last year with a variety of instructions (she has it trademarked so I’m not going to share them here). We had two hours to do our writing. So I went outside to the charming town square and sat in front of what I call the Back to the Future building at an old picnic table and got to writing.
Wow, what a year. No wonder I’m fighting exhaustion. I was at The Ranch at the beginning then hit the ground running with the Travis Alexander trial as soon as I returned. Unexpectedly I ended up being invited to sit with the family and did so for nearly five months. I ended up doing a lot of writing about the trial and fund raising for the Alexander family. I juggled my practice, the trial, my brother who landed in the hospital twice during that time, visiting him/watching his cats and maintaining a semblance of my own life. I spent half the year in a whirlwind. I was invited to appear on the Ricki Lake Show and was flown over to LA to tape that. I met another woman, Susan Markowitz who I’d been communicating for years online as Nick’s Mom who was another guest. I don’t think I’ve written yet about that whole experience but I will.
At the urging of a complete stranger (a former journalist and editor wrote me this line “you should pursue writing”) who’d been reading my postings on the Alexander trial, I started this blog last Spring!
We bought the Sedona house in Jan. so I spent most of the Spring traveling back and forth getting it set up with window treatments, furniture/furnishings, everything that’s needed to set up a home.
I went again to the Ranch in the summer and met Sebastian and Watsu (the world throwing me a liferaft to recover from the previous months). My brother entered the hospital again around that time. When he’s in the hospital I visit him every day driving in to Phoenix and sit with him no matter what state he’s in which believe me, that last hospitalization was a version of Hell I never want any of us to revisit ever again.
I jumped in to fiercely being his case manager, social worker, advocate and sister finally realizing I needed help and asked for it. I found our attorney, new Psychiatrist, his Advocate and a whole new slew of services for him. I also asked my Dad for support so I could go in to a kind of semi retirement with my practice as I felt like I was working two full time jobs. And I got that support.
I started back in therapy with an amazing Psychologist last Spring.
I lost my beloved cat Buddy in the summer.
I traveled to Maine and Vermont with my Dad in the Fall.
I went to Washington and had a life changing weekend beckoning me back to Edmonds to pursue writing more deeply (which is on my new treasure map). I found out one of my favorite authors Erica Bauermeister was reading my blog (gulp!).
I went back to the Ranch for my birthday and again the world reminded me I can get supported as Sebastian traded weeks to be there for me and treated me like Royalty for a solid week. That connection with him was a big one for me last year. In so many ways, some I’m sure I don’t even know yet.
Some new relationships were formed and let go of like the wind and old friends reunited. I faced a whole lot of re-evalulation on the friendship level and the whole schemata sort of shifted.
My health has been a bit sketchy I think from all the stress so I made some serious changes starting a program called Intermittent fasting and joining a gym which I love.
These are some of the heavy hitting issues I dealt with just in one year! Whew!
After doing the writing assignment, we were ready to think about what we wanted for the new year. You see gaps, mistakes, things you’d like to emphasize.
I also had some aha moments about why I need to let my last treasure map retire itself.
For example, after I met Sebastian that second time, I came home and looked at it knowing he’d be on there somewhere (by the way he makes treasure maps too–calling them vision boards). I saw this image and knew it was him.
A beautiful man with great arms and hair alone in a bed. Get that? Alone. Now that really didn’t do the job I thought it was going to which was magnetize a man in to my bed (ha) but it did magnetize a man, a beautiful man, to my life who would be in a bed alone. Sebastian is gay, out and proud, and we won’t be sharing a bed like that. But he’s coming to visit me this spring and will be in my home in a bed. By himself. (this makes me chuckle). These treasure maps can be quite literal, gotta be careful! Don’t get me wrong, I still fell in love with Sebastian and this whole relationship has told me that the world of love can be more expansive and less defined as one might think.
I read Carole’s book and accomplished that one but those images started kind of working against me in a way I think. Now that I knew these were pictures of a man who is now deceased, they become like ghost images. A reflection of a relationship that is now gone. And I spent quite of bit of time last year reflecting on past loves. Interesting huh?
I also manifested this branch in this big tree like sculpture in my treatment room that I hung crystals all over.
I found this exact wooden spoon with silver handles in my Grandma’s old silverware which I also started using as my regular utensils.
Alfonse and I started ballroom dancing classes.
I spent quite a few years living behind this curtain that I decided to rip away and step out of this year on Jan. 1.
I got this exact pedicure countless times.
I spent far too much time in metaphorical safe trees, alone.
And I sit in this exact white chair, most every morning, drinking coffee and writing this blog, just as I’m doing right in this moment.
In fact, here it is, without me and the coffee 😉 .
And then there is this bridge. I’ve not landed her yet so last night decided, since my map this time is smaller than the last one, I’m going to overlay it and allow this bridge to continue peeking out over the top.
I didn’t complete my treasure map on Sunday as I had some specific images I still wanted to find. So I spent last night for about two hours combing through more magazines seeking them.
I found some but not all so not ready to take it and laminate it just yet. I think I’ll print a couple out from my computer (once I get more ink today ) and that will be that. Another masterpiece.
In the meantime, here are some sneak previews.
Then there is this image, taking center stage. The center image is always super important to me and this one I landed on without question. Not ready to explain it just yet but it’s clear as a bell to me.
I’ll get a good pic of the whole thing once it’s finished, laminated and on the wall.
I highly recommend this artful way about going about goal setting. Or magical lilypad jumping. Or just an afternoon of creativity and right brain swimming.
And I’ll let you all know as each. and every. one of my dreams.