From as early as I can remember, I knew there was something different about me. I didn't know what exactly what that was, but I felt I wasn't like my classmates. Even at home with my parents and siblings I felt like an orange in a bowl of apples. I felt out of place, out of sorts, and out of luck. I figured it was something I'd just have to get used to.
There must be something wrong with me, I agonized. Why can't I just be like everyone else?
For the better part of three decades I proceeded to blend in the best I could--to not make waves in hopes that no one would notice I was painfully [he-hem] different. I pursued careers I deemed socially acceptable, but they turned out to be superficial and unsatisfying. I contorted myself into the cookie-cutter wife and mom I thought I should be and wondered why it felt like something was missing. I squelched every bit of me that might make others uncomfortable and ended up feeling empty and alone. The true light of Melissa wasn't allowed to shine until the day I couldn't keep it in any longer.
It didn't happen overnight, but I finally began to realize that I didn't like the manufactured Melissa. I actually like the real me--especially my differences.
I confess I was a little apprehensive when I received an invitation to teach a workshop in my hometown--the very place where I first felt the sting of being different. I worried about how I (the girl who grew up down the street but now talks to dead people) would be received. I feared rejection, yes, but I also feared a remission of feeling I needed to protect or reject the real me.
The thing I know now that little-black-sheep Melissa didn't know then is that there are others like me. I'm not the only one who has felt like a stranger in their own life. I'm not the only one who has felt unsure of who they really are or what about them is so different. I'm not the only one who has felt it was unsafe to come out of their shell. I'm not even the only one with spiritual aspirations feared to be the product of a head-in-the-clouds mentality.
Knowing that, I'm excited to announce I'll return to my hometown next month to teach sheep of all different hues the art of intuitive oracle card reading. I credit oracle cards for finally breaking me out of my shell (so to speak), and I'm anxious to share the techniques I've learned and developed to help others discover their intuitive and spiritual potential and (in the process) to open doors for their true self-acceptance. I can't wait!
You are perfect, you are whole, and you are safe to be the real you.
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