“Some periods of our growth are so confusing that we don’t even recognize that growth is happening. We may feel hostile or angry or weepy and hysterical, or we may feel depressed. It would never occur to us, unless we stumbled on a book or a person who explained to us, that we were in fact in the process of change, of actually becoming larger, spiritually, than we were before.
Whenever we grow, we tend to feel it, as a young seed must feel the weight and inertia of the earth as it seeks to break out of its shell on its way to becoming a plant.
Often the feeling is anything but pleasant. But what is most unpleasant is the not knowing what is happening. Those long periods when something inside ourselves seems to be waiting, holding its breath, unsure about what the next step should be, eventually become the periods we wait for, for it is in those periods that we realize that we are being prepared for the next phase of our life and that, in all probability, a new level of the personality is about to be revealed.” ~ Alice Walker
Moving The Sun To Shine In Dark Places – original post
“Sprouting Wings” Art by: by Celeste Ruff (Calgary, AB, Canada)
After beginning the separation from my ex-husband in October 2012 (the month of our 14th wedding anniversary), I began the process of personal growth – only this is…it sure didn’t feel like growth. The divorce was finalized by trial in February 2016. Never in a million years did I expect it to take that long, nor that I would experience such heartache and countless losses during that time – the kidnapping of my son; loss of 99% of our possession that were in a storage unit that I could no longer afford; family deserting me (I was no longer the person that held everyone else together); homelessness – couch-hopping for nearly a year; long-term unemployment after a highly successful corporate career and completing my MBA; foreclosure on our home; financial exploitation; two times in a “crisis house”; 3 weeks in the mental health unit after suicidal thoughts; loss of dignity and respect; loss of a pet; continued emotional/verbal abuse and the list goes on. I could write a book…and plan on it. Suffice it to say, those were the ugliest years of my life…the “Dark Night of the Soul”.
How did I go from being a successful executive in the health care industry; MBA graduate from the University of St. Thomas; a mom who had a very tight, loving relationship with her son; long-term homeowner; the one that my 4 siblings and parents always turned to for support; lots of friends; Hostess for many social events and parties throughout the year; and so much more…..to homeless, heartbroken and completely destitute? Things were so severe that by November 2017, that I was approved for 100% medical disability for my Complex PTSD, major depression and anxiety. At the disability hearing, I recall crying hysterically as the medical evaluator spent nearly an hour citing from my doctors notes and telling the judge how I met all of the requirements. When she was done, she looked at me with sad eyes and said… “I’m so sorry Ms. Mortensen, for all that you’ve been through. I wish you the best.”
How did I go from being a mentor to many, being the sole income for our family, earning a six figure salary, being admired and respected….to becoming the person that people pitied? The person that people felt uncomfortable around because they could not comprehend the pain and anguish that she was experiencing? Now, let me be clear…I was thrilled to be away from my ex. He is a narcissistic psychopath who’s verbally, emotionally and financially abusive. His ability to manipulate me, our son, my family and everyone around him was, and still is, one of his strongest abilities. It’s a game for him.
After the separation, Johnny (my son) and I were initially together about 99% of the time. Thankfully, my ex stayed away from us. It wasn’t until he was given disability benefits for his back injury and told that there was a child payment that would be dispersed to whomever had custody of Johnny that things changed. That was when the kidnapping occurred. And, that is when my health began to deteriorate. Things have not been the same since that time. That is when the Parental Alienation truly started.
Parental alienation is the process, and the result, of psychological manipulation of a child into showing unwarranted fear, disrespect or hostility towards a parent and/or other family members. It is a distinctive form of psychological abuse, towards both the child and the rejected family members, that occurs almost exclusively in association with family separation or divorce, particularly where legal action is involved. It undermines core principles of both the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. Most commonly, the primary cause is a parent wishing to exclude another parent from the life of their child, but other family members or friends, as well as professionals involved with the family (including psychologists, lawyers and judges), may contribute significantly to the process. It often leads to the long-term, or even permanent, estrangement of a child from one parent and other family members and, as a particularly adverse childhood experience, results in significantly increased lifetime risks of both mental and physical illness.
As I quoted above, that period of time was one of “Those long periods when something inside ourselves seems to be waiting, holding its breath, unsure about what the next step should be, eventually become the periods we wait for, for it is in those periods that we realize that we are being prepared for the next phase of our life and that, in all probability, a new level of the personality is about to be revealed.”
Fast forward to September 2018…I saw a post on my mentor’s Facebook timeline. He announced that he was beginning a program called The Master Keys Experience. When I read the description, I immediately knew that THIS was a wake-up-call. THIS was the “tool” that I was looking for. THIS was the structure that I needed. THIS was something that I was willing to commit six months of my time. And, THIS would be the transformational period to discovering the person that I was always meant to be. Because of the Parental Alienation, I only see my son for about a half hour on Saturdays. Finding the silver lining…I have the time to focus on myself and for the betterment of our future. NOW is the time for ME.
Week One, I was diligent about completing all of the daily assignments. I read Og Mandino’s, “Greatest Salesman In The World”, through the first scroll – three times each day. I read the first lesson from Haanal, author of The Master Keys. I read the Blueprint Builder (BPB) out loud each day. I sat for 15 minutes, completely still, each day. I wrote and submitted the first draft of my DMP – “Definite Major Purpose”. I joined the live webinar training with Mark J. I commented on the posts. Off to a great start….
Then, Week Two happened…I fell back into my old Blueprint. I procrastinated. I didn’t complete the work like I was supposed to. I didn’t do my blog posts. I didn’t revise my DMP. I attempted my “15 minute sits”, but it was a struggle. I let my “life” get in the way.
During week two, I spent a lot of time searching for a new place to live – since I need to move by the end of November, at the latest. With a tight budget and specific requirements for housing, I had to be diligent in my search. I looked at many places – and I lost focused during the week. On the bright side…I have found a beautiful one bedroom apartment, directly across the street from Lake Harriet – one of SW Minneapolis’s most beautiful lakes. Water is my happy place – living by the lake will bring me JOY. So, although I didn’t do what I was supposed to do for this program, I’m thankful that the time was still used wisely, as I needed to find a secure and safe place to live near my son’s school. Without secure housing and basic needs…it’s nearly impossible to focus on anything else. My new home is exactly a 6 minute drive to my ex’s apartment and 6 minute drive to my son’s school. I’m content.
Now, as we are already begining Week 3, I’m taking a deep breathe and preparing for the remainder of the month. Yes, it will be a busy one, but I’m dedicated to giving this program my all. Next weekend, I will be away for 3 days at a Women’s Retreat in northern Minnesota (October 12-14). On October 25th, I’m scheduled for “Mohs” surgery to get rid of my skin cancer on my face. The doctor told me to plan on being there from at least 8 am to noon. I’m guessing that I will need to get some rest that afternoon and my left eye will have a bandage partially covering it from the surgery. I’ll listening to audios of the readings that day. And, I need to move myself and my belongings to my new “home” by October 31. I have a planner and I’m writing my assignments in it. I MUST commit to this program as I MUST make some really serious changes in my life – for myself, my beautiful 14 year old son Johnny and my sweet mini Australian Labradoodle, Bohdi.
Life will be different for us in 2019. Johnny WILL be back with me full-time. I WILL commit to my DMP, change my Blueprint and teach my “subby” (sub-conscious) how my life is meant to be.