Several years ago, I followed very clear guidance I received on what to do with ideas about an invention, which were gifted to me during my experience of driving repeatedly between Florida and Michigan – and the resulting pain that accrued in my body from those long drives. For the full story and more information on my invention, click here.
I applied for design and utility patents. I sought out manufacturers for the various components and found the perfect company to put it all together. I fired the first manufacturing company I’d hired and went with another that I liked better, even though that meant sacrificing thousands of dollars. I assured myself that it was a business lesson well learned – and better to change course than to throw good money after bad. I went through all of the processes – getting licenses, insurance, permits, etc. – all of which seemed like a big deal and a lot to go through. And just before my product was to officially launch on Amazon, I fell and broke both arms. Go, me!
To make a long story shorter (because this isn’t even the point I’m getting to), my great idea that I was sure would make me millions, didn’t get very far at all. I sold a few dozen. Most of the people who tried them really liked them, but my business didn’t expand, as I’d been sure it would – by word of mouth, the bit of promotions that I was doing online, and by having sales booths at local events. I ran out of money, motivation, and trust in the Universe.
Frankly, I was angry. Build it and they will come? Do the work and the Universe will rise up to meet you and open the doors you need opened? Have a positive attitude and you will create what you desire? Crap, crap, and more CRAP!!! I did all of that! I invested everything! I believed and committed 100% and made the effort! I got counseling from the Small Business Development Council. I wrote to everyone I could think of – and got invited to The American Dreams Academy by the Home Shopping Network. I did everything right! And then I ended up going through a bankruptcy and spending the next few years, not financially secure as I’d expected, but literally struggling to survive, working 60-80 hours a week and still not making enough money to even have my own place, much less a savings account. My bitterness at the Universe and my disillusionment and resentment were enormous. WTF?!?
Fortunately, I had good friends who allowed me to rent a room in their homes. I stayed in one place for a couple of years, in another for a little over a year. When the pandemic hit, I’d already turned in my resignation at the high school where I was working at the time. I was planning to move from Florida to Colorado, where I’d already lined up a massage license. I did make it to Colorado, but due to the pandemic and being in several high risk categories for Covid19, I couldn’t work as a massage therapist. I actually tried to do so and had a panic attack, running out of the tiny, unventilated office before my first client even showed up. I couldn’t collect unemployment since I’d voluntarily resigned from my teaching job – and I watched my already meager savings rapidly evaporate. I was given some respite from receiving the stimulus checks and my tax return, as well as a few cash gifts from friends, which have (so far) allowed me to keep my car. I am coming perilously close to that not being the case, but am maintaining my faith that everything will work out.
Here’s why I’m keeping the faith – and some of what I’ve learned from these past few years: even though I don’t have financial security right now, I do have a roof over my head. In fact, I split time between the homes of family and a friend, so I have two roofs over my head. I do have food to eat. I still have my computer and free internet access. I have moments of stress, fear, sadness, and grief – but my life is mostly quite happy. I spend my time with people who love me – and they love me just for me, not for money or anything I can give them, which hasn’t always been the case with some “friends” and “loved ones” in my life previously, who have used me over the years. I’ve also learned to receive, which hasn’t been easy for me because I’ve felt good about myself for being a giver. Receiving feels vulnerable, whereas giving felt more like I had control and power. I am learning the important of balance – and that receiving is as essential/important as giving.
This time during the pandemic has actually been a healing opportunity for me. I spend a lot of my time writing and doing creative projects that bring me joy and pleasure. Yes, I’ve been applying to jobs all of these months – and while the closed doors have been frustrating and discouraging, the reality is that they’ve given me the time and opportunity to publish my own books and work on other projects of mine.
But more than that, here is what I want to say: had I initially met with the success that I expected years ago, had I made the millions I was expecting – I would have missed out on some very important people, connections, events, opportunities, and lessons in my life. For one thing, this website and my online healing/coaching practice wouldn’t exist. I wouldn’t have gone down this road – I would have been in my own little house somewhere writing novels and enjoying my solitude. I wouldn’t have moved to Colorado or spent time in Arizona, because I could have bought my family a house near me in Florida.
Had I not moved to Colorado, I wouldn’t have found Awkwardly Zen – my friends and tribe, which has become a very important part of my life. I wouldn’t have given talks on Self-Love and Sacred Sexuality and Boundaries. That wouldn’t have opened up other doors to other interviews and classes and opportunities to help people. Yes, there is still not much showing monetarily, but the connections I’m making with people are priceless. Had I not been spending some of my time in Arizona, I wouldn’t have been able to assist at a Sex Energy Training in Cornville upcoming in July, 2021.
There are countless ways my “failure” to become financially wealthy, when I expected to meet with that kind of success, has had a positive impact on my life – even though on the surface financial insecurity may seem only negative. Finally for now, though, had my ego not been broken down enough for me to get out of my own way, I would probably not have had the courage to publish my books. I had to get to the IDGAF stage in order to own ALL of me – and to be willing to stand in the world in my own truth, authenticity, and vulnerability. I had to get to the point where I felt like I had nothing left to lose in order to claim my own life, strength, power, and identity in a very public way. (Not everyone has to get to that point for the same result, but I’m a very stubborn Taurus who craves comfort and tends to be conflict-avoidant, so yeah – I had to be dragged kicking and screaming, my typical MO, LOL).
It must have been necessary for me to be broken down and to face possible homelessness, and to experience the fear and despair of living in uncertainty about the future, in order to develop more compassion and empathy and a deeper perspective on life. I’m not saying I have everything all figured out (far from that!) – but I am miles down the road from where I started – and these paths I’ve traveled, as painful and scary as they’ve been at times – and as joyous and healing as they’ve been at other times, have been essential to my overall life path. This brings me to the conclusion that maybe the Universe knows what it’s doing after all.
There is no amount of money that would have been worth missing out on the friends I’ve met or the lessons I’ve learned or the opportunities I’ve had – and will have – because I didn’t get what I thought I wanted. After years of despair, discouragement, and struggling just to survive, living with near constant stress, I’ve actually had a very healing year this past year – a year where I’ve been nurtured and sustained by family and friends (who’ve supplied me with shelter, food, and even some occasional cash to keep me afloat). I haven’t been busting my ass, working 60-80 hours a week just trying to get by, like I had the previous few years. Weirdly, all of my needs are met without even having a paycheck! I’m not saying there’s no stress or that I won’t need a paycheck (or other influx of money) soon – just that my daily life is actually much better now – and my financial situation (thanks to not having to pay rent, etc.) isn’t appreciably different from when I was overwhelmed with and exhausted from work, barely staying ahead of the steady influx of bills.
That said, I’m starting to sell my invention again, hoping to help as many people as possible and finally make my millions. I’m hoping that this time, Divine Timing is on my side. And if it doesn’t work out that way for some reason, then I’m going to trust that’s because there are better paths for me and more important things on the horizon for my life. I’m going to put my faith in Divine Right Order and know that all is well. Maybe I’ll even stop stomping around and complaining that I did everything “right” and petulantly questioning why am I not being appropriately rewarded for my efforts? There is wisdom far greater than that of my ego at work. I’m going to lean into that and trust my path, trust the NOW that unfolds in each moment before me. Live there.