It was 2014 and I had just been diagnosed with PTSD. I had a difficult time accepting the diagnosis and went for a second opinion. After the third opinion, I had to accept that I had a battle ahead of me. None in comparison however the the battle(s) I had overcome.
To give you an idea of the severity of my PTSD, my first physician prescribed “up to” 3 Xanax a day, for a 120 pound body weight. I have nothing against others using prescriptions and make no claim to that, however I personally chose not to use a single one. I chose to fight through it all with natural medicines such as green tea, therapy, meditation, and creative arts. I still have that full bottle today to remind me we can get through anything with a positive mind and proper direction.
The symptoms were indescribable. A once fearless woman facing “un-logical” fears, muscle twitches from head to toe, sleepless nights, digestive upset, night sweats, night terrors and more.
My therapist was also a Shaman. Although he never described Shamanism to me in those first years, his spiritual foundation made me feel safe in my recovery from PTSD. As the “symptoms” began to subside, I began crafting to calm my mind.
I owned a Gift shop in Pasadena, CA from 2003-2018. I used that platform as a way to bring the calmness of craft to others in 2015. I also used that platform as a way to bring a bit of joy to other’s lives. Although I did not promote it this way, the same effect of peace and present moment began to take over many of my students as well. I received letter after letter explaining that they were finally getting restful sleep after learning to knit, finally getting a break from the “anxiety bully” after learning to embroider. The letters continued to come, and I could feel my souls purpose growing beyond the walls of that gift shop. My students brought me as much healing as those classes did them.
In 2016, I began to yearn for something more. When sitting with my therapist one day he said… “Marci, when I go to speak at conferences you are my number one.” I at first felt elated, but had no idea just what that meant. He went on to explain that in his 42 years I had been the patient that was the most highly abused. And yet I still wake up with a smile everyday to greet the world. And I still feel that all of our battles are different but equal, and that through my life I have been blessed with trials in order to be able to share the amazingness of life with you now.
He asked me to please consider that I am a “Wounded-Healer”, and that I could benefit by helping others to see the beauty in life’s challenges. This is the day my life changed completely, and my Chapter 4 began…
I quickly set off with a list of goals. I went back to school, studied metaphysics and spiritual modalities, and completed my Ph.D. I began working with clients and watching as other’s took “seemed” fears and turned them in to powerful goal accomplishment. I am so so beyond proud of my clients, they set the pace, the goals, and they are solely responsible for their bad-assery.
In 2017 during the full solar eclipse, I put together a guided journey and fieldwork for clients. I followed the same path that day and did not observe the eclipse, but rather participated in it on a spiritual level. Honoring the intimacy of the moon and suns union, by not looking at it, but by growing from it.
What began as an intentional guided visual meditation, quickly turned into what I would later discover was my Shamanic initiation. The “Journey” was so real it was as if I was watching a movie.
I felt a bit terrified as well as humbled. I had never experienced anything like this. Was I losing it? I explained it in detail to my therapist. He explained that I had been initiated by Spirit. The overlaps were uncanny. I had never even picked up a book on Shamanism before this, and would have no idea that the foundation of my journey was through Spirit. My Symbolic Life was beginning.
I quickly immersed myself in books etc. Only to discover that my entire life had been leading me to this moment. This Shamanic initiation. You see Shamanism is Mother Earths religion. It knows no boundaries, no borders. It reaches from Peru, to Norway, to Mexico, Russia and on and on. And all dating back to over 10,000 years ago.
I wrote my Doctoral Dissertation on how to recognize ones Shamanic Initiation in Modern society. It will be available to read soon in “Published Works” on this site.
Now, my purpose is to show each and every client that all aspects of life are beautiful. To give them tools and foundation to live a Symbolic Life for themselves…a life that feeds the daily needs of their souls and is never wasted. We learn gratefulness, mindfulness, success..and If they request, we dive deep as well into finding a spiritual path that suits them and their heart. To show them that “battles” are only opportunity for even more growth and beauty.
I am so grateful for every path I have been on, today’s path included. I am grateful to you. That little gift store still lives on as she is a part of me and another expression of love in this World that I have never, and will never lose sight of. We are all in this together.
xo - Rev. MM