Moving to a New Place
I am right now in the middle of a transition of moving from Phoenix, Arizona to Los Angeles, California. The move was my own choice, of my own doing. This is helpful as I am not working against myself, with the energy of resistance. I want to be here. So I was surprised when the impact of the transition was so powerful and I found myself experiencing grief, loss, and confusion. I am currently applying everything I know about making a successful transition as I write this. The content is fresh.
Acknowledge the Transition. I found myself six weeks into the transition at the doctor’s office from stress-related breathing issues. I had packed up my home, put everything I owned into storage, left my community and subleased an apartment in a city I’m don’t yet know. I found myself surprised when my body started yelling at me. I thought my spiritual practice would be enough to inoculate me from a body response. I was incorrect. I have no doubt that my regular practice softened the impact, yet I still found myself floundering a bit.
I awoke quickly to honoring the transition the whole me is making. This meant talking to my body, letting it know I’m listening, and reminding if of the Strength of God that it was born out of. I sit down with myself and through writing in my journal and conversation with my friends, I close my old life as I knew it and acknowledge my new life is different. I formally end the old and open to the new.
Practice Grounding. I love the earth. In Phoenix I started my day with my feet on stone tile, grounding into the earth and making sound as part of my daily meditation process. Then I’d walk four miles on quiet streets. Now I put my feet softly on an old worn out rug, tip toeing as to not disturb the tenant below me. I meditate in silence then walk four to five blocks in an air polluted environment with lots of noise. I realized quickly after my doctor’s visit that I wasn’t grounding myself and I was judging my new environment instead of loving it. I have explored new ways to ground that honor both the tenant below me and myself. I commit to walking the beach once a week and the mountain canyon once a week.
I receive bodywork and touch. Whether it is a massage, Reiki, holding hands at church, hugging a new friend, I allow myself to receive touch. This is part of grounding. I’m not talking about the I-am-desperate-hug-me-and-let-me-take-your energy-from-you-creepy-hug. I am talking about the exchange of appreciation between human beings. If I feel as though I could use touch, I give it to myself through massage or body work.
Place my Attention Upon What I Love. With anything new, there is a tendency for me to want to criticize it because I’m uncomfortable. Uncomfortable does not equal critical. The practice for me, then, is to start identifying what it is I love about my new environment. I love the Starbucks by me as it has one of the few Clover machines in the country. I can enjoy a very delicious cup of decaf occasionally. I also like the vegan restaurant down the street, the art everywhere, and the exotic flowers in bloom. I take photos of what I love to remind myself of beauty where I see it.
I bless where I am staying. Instead of walking in the door to see what I don’t have, I walk in with a grateful heart for all that surrounds me and supports me. This apartment is a house of God. It is littered with evidence of Good. I now say to the walls (quietly so as to not disturb the neighbors) I’m home and I love you. I am shifting my consciousness to the realization that everywhere I am is home because I am here. I am the home I bring into the room, not the other way around.
I explore the community. My first week in town I could hardly wait to get to the Grammy Museum in downtown LA and see the Ringo Starr exhibit. I invested two hours in the museum and left filled and inspired. I then watched several movies with Ringo in it and explored some of his friendships through documentaries. I had a Beatle week; which fed my Soul. Then I stopped. I now commit to actively exploring one site in the Los Angeles area so I can really be here and take in the community.
I became involved with the community. When I moved initially to Phoenix, I volunteered at one of the live theaters as an usher. This gave me access to real great theater and allowed me to serve. When I arrived in Los Angeles I called my favorite church and asked to volunteer. I chose one committee where I can do what I love and meet other people. I give of my time twice a month.
I do something artistic to honor my emotions. Art lends itself well to expressing emotions. Writing poetry, blogging, researching and sharing, painting, drawing, sketching, photography, singing, writing songs, all forms of expression are lubrication for a move of location. It releases pent up emotion which when stagnant in the body can create havoc, for which I’m a good example.
I remember my Soul’s heritage. I connect with my real home. I realized in this transition that I often forgot who I am. I don’t have the physical reminders, friendships, work, routine, to remind me of who I am. So, I’m creating it. I created a routine that supports my Soul. I begin my day with my spiritual practice, walk, shower, breakfast, and then clients, writing, and teaching Sunday through Wednesday. Thursday is administrative day. Friday and Saturday are play days. Of course, I flex my schedule, if needed, but the bare bones are in place.
I remember where I am from. I commit to daily reading of those who have gone before me, living from their Soul. I read Emma Curtis Hopkins, The Bible, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Dr. Ernest Holmes, The Vedas, and biographies of healers, artists, visionaries and people of faith. I remember who I am, and I open my heart to compassion and love from me to me.