Twenty-two years ago, almost to the day, I attended a workshop run by a charming lady called Judith, a relationship counsellor, somewhere in north London. I remember the event being tremendous fun as well as profoundly useful. At the time, my first husband and I were in the throes of separation, or ‘conscious uncoupling’, as it is now more affectionately known. Uncoupling, even with the noblest intention in the world, demands a great deal of courage and a humble and contrite heart. In my case, it also called for a lot of self-help workshops. Fans of Elizabeth Gilbert and Eat, Pray, Love will know exactly what I mean.
This morning, I stumbled across a handwritten self-addressed letter in a tattered brown paper envelope. Inside was a handwritten letter, a note to self, dated 23rd October 1992. The beauty and clarity of the message startled me. There’s something about heartfelt transparency that cuts straight to the chase. This is what it said:-
You have learnt this week that you must really listen to yourself and act on your intuition, without thinking too much about what could or could not be. You have learnt the importance of sharing with people, of accepting people as they truly are and of accepting all the irritations and niggles you feel.
The important thing is to use your voice even when you feel that what you have to say is not as good, not as important as anybody else’s. You have learnt that holding on to sadness only reinforces it and does not set you free. You have learnt that you are now ready to leave the nest, but in order to do so, you must try out your wings and spread them out.
You have learnt that nobody else will love you if you do not love yourself. You have learnt that honesty and love is the answer to everything – and acceptance. And you have learnt that you have many gifts inside you that you must now put into practice without expectation and holding on to other things.
From me to you xxx
Twenty-two years is a lengthy passage of time. Yet if you subscribe to the viewpoint that
time is highly over-rated. Time bears no significance in the wisdom school of living and loving. In these past twenty-two years, a very happy second marriage and second ‘conscious uncoupling’, divorce has taken place. Another opportunity to deepen the practice of acceptance, surrender to what was and allow new pathways to emerge. My commitment to keep my heart open to give and receive loves continues to be my guiding force. Great teachers really do appear when you most need them. Darren Eden from Devon, a master in the field of intuition, has picked up the mantle from Judith, the relationship counsellor from north London. Great teachers are the ones who walk unfalteringly alongside you when you are terrified of drowning, encouraging you to let go and dive deeper. Great teachers never tell you what to do, but they will hold up a mirror to your very own soul.
“Listen to yourself and act on your intuition” continues to serve me well. In this age of ‘click click information’, there is only one place to go, one voice to listen to.
“To thy own self be true”
but remember, always, there is no need to be a hermit. The world needs you and deep sea divers need companions too.
Self-love and self-compassion is a second by second, minute by minute, daily, forever practice. It requires self-discipline, self-acceptance, oodles of patience, always peppered with a huge dollop of humour. In return we receive a priceless gift, the heart of who we are. As we continue to disarm, lay down our inner defences, what pours through is pure intuition, a God-given gift, the inner voice of love and the sweet nectar of all relationships. Intuition is Me-shaped. The source of intuition, like the source of the stream which leads to the river which leads to the sea, starts with Me.