By Monique Paul
This is the story of my experience along The Quest course, and it is dedicated to Martha Beck, Deepak Chopra, Theresa Trosky, Susan Foster and Dianne. I love you! XO
Every living being in this universe lives a quest. Even the tiniest ant has its own path in life, its struggles, and its happiness.
This morning, I was reading an article from Martha Beck, “The Storm Before the Calm.” I recognized my story.
I don’t know how, but all of the sudden I was in the storm. Business opportunities falling down with no reason; I was gaining weight, I didn’t feel like going to the gym or to my yoga class when yoga has been my addiction for years. Everything was wrong. The storm? Yes, the storm! Of course, I wasn’t prepared, no umbrella, no nothing.
Along the year I had been trying to calm myself, forcing the yoga and meditation, I enrolled in a free “21 Days Meditation” from Deepak Chopra and Oprah. “Getting Unstuck.” I purchased another two 21 Days series in a bundle: “Desire and Destiny,” and “Manifesting True Success”.
Starting August, the financial situation was becoming too tough. I was more stressed. More food, less exercise; more anxiety. Less business, less money; more scarcity. That was becoming the story of my life.
Even though I didn’t have much work to do, I was sitting in front of the computer all day long, thinking how to bring more clients. It was as if the computer was going to spit the solution, and actually, believe it or not, it did! Aha!
Surfing one of the Chopra websites I found an online course: The Quest. I had little money, and didn’t have more time. I read the description of the course, and I realized this was the help I needed.
So, 3…2…1… Credit card out, I filled in the form and without thinking clicked on the check-out button. It was done. I put all my hopes, and my last money in this course.
On August 10, at 4:00 A.M. Central time, I was already reading the first section of The Quest. I learned about awareness… Contracted awareness, oh yes! Even my hair and my eyelashes were in contracted awareness.
Expanded awareness and opening to joy. JOY? What’s that? I remembered I used to be a happy girl, but that was very long ago.
“The other day I was driving, and I was happy,” I thought. Then this voice came out of nowhere. “Why are you so happy if you have so many problems? Happiness isn’t for you”.
“Oh my Gosh, what did I do? I spent my last credit in this.” I thought for a second. I even thought about canceling it.
But canceling the course wasn’t the option, now that I was there, I would try something I’d never done before. I would tell my deepest feelings, why I was so unhappy and so filled with guilt and sorrow. After all the community was a chat with people I didn’t even know. If I was rejected, I could always run away.
I wrote my first post introducing myself to everyone and saying I had identified some blocks from childhood; I talked about meditation and yoga, but I still didn’t dare to write in depth about those ‘childhood blocks.’
Then I posted about my experience with the first exercise, the Wild Child and the Dictator; not a bad experience after all. I felt expansion, and I loved the sensation, so that was the expanded awareness, huh? Mmmmm! I liked it.
But then I realized I focused it on my work, and that was something I used to do when I wanted to avoid talking about my own feelings. From the work perspective, it was okay, I had new promotional ideas and all. But the real pain was there intact and punching me as usual.
The second week started, and now the topic was “Loving Relationships”. I did the first exercise; I tried to focus on people other than family. I was avoiding the real problem in my life.
Our Master Coach Theresa was helping me, telling me to let go of. But how I was going to let go of that? I finally decided to go straight to the source of my pain. So I threw it there. Yes, I hated my mother, I felt this was the worst feeling that someone could ever have. I hated her because she made my life as a girl miserable; I spent my childhood trying to please her unsuccessfully. I was the girl with A’s at school. I was the good girl with honors. But I was always ignored, there was always someone better, and nothing I would do was enough for her.
When I was a teenager, I was desperately looking for love, so I had a lot of boyfriends, and I was 18 when I became pregnant.
“No one would ever love you or accept you with your child because of what you did,” my mother told me more than once. “You screwed it up, what a shame; what is everyone going to think about you and me? People will think I didn’t raise you correctly.”
I said almost everything I was feeling in that post. I felt lighter, but I also felt very frightened! What was going to happen now? And then I found a reply from Theresa. I was afraid of reading it.
Theresa understood I had been carrying this for years, she understood how heavy it was, how desperate I was. I was isolating myself, I was afraid of people, I was afraid of rejection and at the same time, I was desperately looking for love and affection. Theresa told me she sensed my guilt came from hating my Mom and hurting her at the same time, she was so right!
“I know that may sound radical and weird, and unloving, and unkind so bear with me. What would it be like to let yourself without any judgment feel the hate?” Theresa said in her reply.
“So I can have permission to hate my mother, and it is okay?” I thought.
I had been the toughest judge on myself. I was condemning me to a life of unlimited pain and guilt. I just had to quit that ‘Judge’ position I had taken. There was nothing to judge. Voilá! All these years it was not my mother but me who was punishing me.
Theresa advised me to go with the Wild Child and the Dictator again. I did.
“Hey you Wild Child, come here, stop blaming yourself, you’ve done anything wrong. And you Dictator, quit bullying the Wild Child.”
At the end of the exercise I was hugging my Wild Child and my Dictator, we were all crying of happiness. The pain was gone. That was it, we were free.
The following day, the same voice came out of nowhere while I was driving. “Hey, turn on the radio, you like to sing, so let’s sing! Do you know why you are so happy? Because happiness is your nature, and everything will be okay.”
From this day on the sun had a different color; then Dianne, a girl from the course sent a message full of love and acceptance. For the first time in many years, I felt real acceptance from someone, I didn’t know! Dianne compared me with a lotus in the stillness of a pond, this was an unexpected compliment that made another miracle. I could see myself as a pretty human being regardless of the past.
The following days, I felt the expansion, the love, and the gratitude; this course turned into the best investment I could have made. I was getting the help I needed to emerge as the real person I am. I still had doubts about my self-esteem, but Theresa convinced me otherwise.
The third week started, “Radiant Health and Wellbeing”. I followed the exercises. I realized I needed to have a real commitment to my body, I had gained some weight, and this was not fair to my body. In the weekly community call, I didn’t dare to raise my hand, the other girls needed Martha more than me; I just needed to listen to get the answers to my questions. I can say I am still in the process of listening to my body and re-educating myself.
The expanded awareness continued, and I didn’t want to be contracted again. Things happen for a reason, that exact week an article about the symptoms of the contracted Chakras fell on my hands in Jiyo. I asked in the community.
The following day, I felt my heart coming out of my chest when I saw a reply from Deepak Chopra himself. Deepak, dear, you made me feel like the most important person in this world! Of course, I followed his advice to work with my Chakras, and I still do.
Well, there were some other fears that I released differently. Imagine you are with a kitten in a garden and you have a water balloon. The kitten pinches it with its tiny claws and the water balloon explodes. Boom, Splash! The kitten certainly would jump backward a little wet. But then there is peace. Okay, some fears were like that. Boom! – A painful recall. Splash! – wet with tears – then peace; the fear was gone.
This became particularly hard during the fourth week. Oh, the fourth week…
Title: True Success. I found I was truly stuck. I was unable to make a list of 20 successes in my life. I didn’t find any! What I found was another block.
When I was little, I was told success is what I had to have; success = obligation. It was my obligation to get A’s at school, it was my obligation to earn more money, but I was never congratulated or rewarded for being successful. Sad but true. Once again Theresa was there. I changed the adjective ‘obligations’ to ‘success,’ and voilá, a list of successes popped up; starting with the change achieved along “The Quest” course.
My awareness was more expanded than ever before, I found myself being optimistic and happy. My hair wasn’t contracted anymore, ha! I was finding a purpose. What did I want to do in my life?
An article fell on my hands, Martha Beck”s “How to Tell When the Universe Is Sending You Signs,” in this article Martha explains how the universe guides us at times. She mentioned, she would be strong as a tiger, so I called these apparent coincidences “Tiger-Tiger” situations.
I wanted to mention this because the fourth week and the ‘True Success’ session was a Tiger-Tiger-TIGER week.
First, the list of success, then talking about success at work, a new copywriting and development business opportunity came in to stay! Oh, my Gosh, a blessed week! A 50% co-authoring opportunity became a reality. Finally and sadly the dearest singer and composer Juan Gabriel passed. In the beginning, this was nothing but news about a celebrity. But then I started listening to all the interviews to his close people, his life, the man behind the scenes. I was shocked! This man would say: “The world needs love, let’s give the world more love.” His fame and success were the fruit of all that love he had for everything and everyone; his pure awareness! He would give this love as beautiful songs. He turned into a model to follow. Tiger-Tiger-TIGER!
The fifth and last week of The Quest started: ‘Unbounded Personal Growth’.
I stood in front of the mirror and looked at myself, I could see a different person, this woman, who was hidden deep inside and frightened to come out, was now emerging to be stronger and happier, welcoming each day with a smile, ready to expand and to give love.
“What do you want?” I asked in the mirror.
“I want to give love.”
“And, how do you want to give love?”
Bingo! Dozens of ideas popped up: Of course writing; it could be copywriting, but the real happiness was with writing fiction, sharing stories, making people laugh and cry, entertaining them, releasing their concerns at least for a while.
Copywriting and development are okay, they pay the bills. Besides writing is writing, and I love it. But fiction…
My heart was about to explode with love and joy. Yes, JOY! I had to share this with everyone in the course. So I wrote this long post where I answered the questions Martha and Deepak asked.
Who am I? – I am a writer
What do I want? – I want to write
What is my purpose? – To take love to people with words
What I’m grateful for? – I’m grateful for being in this course, The Quest. I am grateful to Theresa, Susan, Martha, Deepak, Dianne, and everyone there who helped me go through this radical and positive change. I am grateful for having the opportunity to give this love to the world. I am grateful for existing.
Wednesday, September 7 was the last community call with Martha Beck and a memorable day for me. This call was the perfect cherry on top of the most beautiful cake.
I was there on the call, I didn’t miss any of the calls. Martha wanted to talk with me! My heart jumped with joy. In my last post where I mentioned Juan Gabriel, I also asked how I would know when I would reach home? Where was home?
Martha explained to me, and to everyone in the call that home was dynamic, and we would find it in many places, and doing many things. We are home, when we find our Dharma, when we do what makes us happy, and we do it in peace, with love, and at the same time with passion. Now that I am writing this story, I am home.
“You projected yourself when talking about Juan Gabriel,” Martha said.
Martha reminded me the Ugly Duckling story.
“Do you know this story?” She asked
“Monique, you are a swan. Never forget that YOU ARE A SWAN!” Martha told me.
“The Quest” course has finished, and if time went back, I would take it again and again. Actually, I will because my material, recorded calls, and videos are there for me to go through them every time I need and want.
The end of this course sets the beginning of my very own Quest. I still have fears, I still need to be gentle with myself and give myself more trust. My yoga and meditation have become like eating and drinking water to me.
My writing, for example, I love writing in English, but English is my second language. I know I need to give myself a chance and practice, practice, practice. I can make mistakes, and then I can fix them.
My intention is to always be in expanded and pure awareness, but I can also contract. I am not perfect, and I have my Ying and my Yang.
I’ve learned acceptance, compassion, and love. I know my Mom had her own struggles, and I made peace with her. I love her, and I know she’d always loved me. So now, I go through life full supported.
I’m in my quest to my destiny, enjoying my now, and opened to all the opportunities. I know that uncertainty is the only certainty. I have put my deepest desires into the Field of all Possibilities. Magic is happening, and miracles too. Tiger-Tiger-TIGER!
With much love for you, my dear reader, XOXOXO.
Monique, the Swan.