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The Promise I’ll never forget.
I made a promise outside the operating room that I’ll never forget.
My two year old son Pax was having emergency surgery in a rural Italian hospital, after having swallowed a coin. It was earlier this year in July.
I sat in the corridor with my husband Erik and my daughter Sol and I prayed. I prayed and I promised.
The chances of the surgery going smoothly were incredibly high. It was a simple procedure to reach in and remove the coin, which was lodged in his oesophagus, dangerously close to his windpipe. However, the doctors were very thorough when giving me the list of risks. Risks and probabilities aside, knowing my two year old boy was being operated on under general anaesthesia and being told ‘this is emergency surgery’, initiated a primal response in me. I knew it would be fine, but the shock of being in the corridor of an emergency surgery ward just hours after playing with magnetix on the lounge room floor, was real.
I was calm because I had to be. Before he went in for surgery, they prodded and probed him with blood tests, covid test, a camera down the nose and in the throat, heart tests. This was after the X-Ray that showed where the coin was dangerously positioned. I held him on my chest through it all, as calm as possible in my physical body…. But my mind was touching thoughts I never wanted to think.
When Erik was let into the hospital after a few hours, right before surgery, I gave Pax to him for a cuddle. By this stage, Pax was almost asleep— it had been a scary and tiring morning for him. As Erik held him on his shoulder, he rested. I collapsed into tears. I knew everything would be ok. But the things I felt and the thoughts I thought within those 4 or 5 hours since the incident… I just needed to cry.
Erik went with him as they began the general anaesthetic, I stayed with Sol. I had been calm for hours, and now Erik had arrived, I wanted Pax to feel his calm love as he drifted off to sleep. Originally they said that only one of us could wait outside the operating room, but when the nurse saw me in my crying release, her warm Italian heart over-ruled the policy and she said ‘Actually no, you can all come through.’ I love this about Italians. Bureaucracy is famously disordered in Italy, but they rule with their hearts a lot of the time (in my experience).
We sat in the corridor. We watched people be wheeled past us, headed for emergency surgeries that looked as serious as it gets. I covered Sol’s eyes and turned away myself, so to offer the patients some privacy and respect.
Then, I paced.
And I promised.
I promised that I’d stop this exhaustive search to get life so right. I promised that I would really snap myself out of chronic distractions as a mother. I promised that I’d actually, truly practice gratitude for the beauty of my life. I promised that I’d stop living as if I was something to perfect according to astrology, human design and the plethora of teachings I was so familiar with. I promised to stop with my own participation with the self absorption of the self help world. I promised to live for something greater and wiser than ‘what feels right for me.’
I told God that I got it. I understood the gift and the message here.
I prayed that if He could get us through this safely and smoothly, that I’d live differently— and I meant it.
Our life had been so beautiful, and yet I was continuously searching for a perfection that I assumed would come from me leading it all. But my soul knew how tired I was. I knew that I couldn’t just get on with business as usual after an incident like this. It was a strong redirect but it was also a graceful one. I was shocked and scared In the moment, but I knew the gift this was for my family.
I promised to never forget this promise. I promised that this wouldn’t be a ‘Well, life has gone back to normal now, all good!’ kind of promise. I promised that I would see and hear all that was distracting me, confusing me, leading me astray with more attention. I promised that I’d stop complicating my life with endlessly seeking for truths and answers, meanwhile missing life’s eternal answers in the mundane moments of my life. I promised that life would be different, that I would be different, that I would step up and into motherhood in the way I truly yearned to.
I spoke to Sol about our beautiful life, everything we love to do with Pax and everything we’d cherish even more deeply once he got out. I sat there, leg shaking, pacing the corridor.
I had been praying for clarity and simplicity for years.
Clarity with regards to my marriage.
Clarity with regards to where to live.
Clarity with regards to the mountainous pile of answers I wanted, thousands of truths I wanted to know.
In an instant in the hospital waiting room, everything I sought just dissolved. It was a potent simplification.
As we sat in the corridor, Erik and I looked at each other and said ‘Let’s just go home’. Meaning, let’s go home to Australia. Let’s simplify our lives. Let’s stop the endless search.
After about 30 minutes, the doctors opened the door and called us over— ‘Preggo!’ Meaning Welcome!’
Erik walked over as I sat with my stomach in knots holding Sol.
I knew he was ok.
I knew it had gone smoothly.
I knew it because I could feel how life altering this was for us and I knew that it was to be a wake up call, but a graceful one. I could feel the mightiness and grace of God the entire day.
Erik walked back with his thumbs up and said ‘It went super smoothly!!! He’s just resting.’ They told us that he’d woken up once quite upset and drifted back to sleep (the anaesthesia was strong). I asked if we could go and be with him as he woke up, they agreed.
We went and sat beside him as he laid there asleep. I wanted to let him sleep but I couldn’t help but stroke his hair and say ‘Paxy, we’re here.’ The thought of my child being without us, on his own in the hospital was a lot. As he heard my voice, he opened his eyes and smiled the biggest smile I’v ever seen. He tried to sit up and take out his catheter. He just wanted to jump out and play with his sister. The relief and gratitude we all felt in that moment is something I will never, ever forget— hence why I refuse to forget my promise. I will never let the divinity of that incident be lost on me.
We strapped in for 1-3 nights in the hospital, Pax and I. It ended up being one night— one night of zero food, drink, water, boob. One night of Pax trying to rip the catheter out of his arm. One night of me sneaking him sips of water because he was so, so thirsty and a deep knowing in me knew that it was ok to.
When we were released the next day, he was SOOOO happy that he started doing parkour on the exterior of the hospital. The relief and joy of that moment is something I’ll never forget. Especially as I was so aware that there are many children who aren’t as fortunate, as well as many children who live their childhoods inside of hospitals. We experienced many children in the hospital ward that night, and it was something I’ll never forget. I’d never spent a night in hospital before this and I felt so grateful.
With tender, grateful hearts, we processed it over and over and over. Pax had some strong lung symptoms after the event— In German New Medicine, a death fright is directly linked with the lungs. So, we’ve been in a healing phase for a few months.
Since then, there have been days where I’ve forgotten my promise and my prayer.
There have also been days where I’ve said out loud after hours of distraction “I have not forgotten my promise”.
Recently, I stopped the editing process of my newest book. So much of what was true doesn’t feel true, helpful or appropriate anymore— not for me or the many who’d read it. My heart, my mind and my visions are being rearranged and even though I write in real time, it’s still suuuuuuper tender to talk about.
I’ve burned some books, given away others, and given away all of my card decks.
I’ve put down human design and astrology for a minute.
I want to feel the zero point… a truth in my heart beyond all the information.
We have access to so much that helps us know ourselves. So much so that we’ve become self obsessed. I can speak for myself here. Our standard for success is how totally we are living our individual design, our astrology, healing our wounds and triggers, upholding boundaries, honouring ourselves, loving ourselves….
But is there a possibility that we are complicating our lives and our hearts and our homes by being so persistently self absorbed? Is our self absorption tiring us? Where is our resting place? Have we forgotten God and tried to replace a true personal relationship with Him, with a smorgasbord of other, less fulfilling truths? I have asked these questions to myself as honest explorations, as someone who has so diligently explored so many truths, ideals and ways over the years.
I believe that many of us, who’ve even in the self help world for many years (over a decade if you’re like me), are more unfulfilled than ever, despite having access to more than ever. But …..
We get to tell the truth about how it’s all working for us.
We get to take a step back, and feel ourselves beyond all the modalities, ideals and practices that have formed our identity for so long.
We get to say ‘hang on a minute….’ And push refresh on our hearts.
There is so much distraction for us well intended seekers. When we ask ourselves the honest truth, where is this leading us? How fulfilled is my heart? How harmonious is my home?
In a time of many rogue truths and ideals, it’s time for some new solid, disciplined Promises.
I share these words from my heart, as an expression. I trust that you know your own heart and what to take and leave.
For those coming to Antidote 3 tomorrow, I’ll see you there :) This is the final Antidote ever, and the true end of an era with regards to me and my work. Something new is on the horizon, but I need some space to see.
For those not coming tomorrow, I’ll continue to see you in these pages.
One more thing before I shut the laptop and go and play in the sunshine with the kids (and some carrot sticks and curry almond butter my friend Al made… it’s insane).
Yesterday I shared these somewhat unpopular beliefs that I have about self-help, wellbeing and business. These are conservative versions of the stronger more convicted beliefs I have but hey… baby steps ;) I’m sure if you’re reading this, you know you can trust me to share the honesty of my personal evolution, despite the buttons it pushes. I am excited to see how the texture and tempo of the Pk Diaries evolves as I do. I’m sure grateful for this platform to express myself. Thank you for being here and for reading.
So, some unpopular beliefs:
— Self help has become dangerously self-indulged
— Many long time seekers are more dissatisfied, lost and unfulfilled than ever, despite continuously investing money and time on a plethora of growth experiences.
— The sugar high of momentary exaltation is often mistaken for real progress )when it is in fact just looping).
— The trance of deficiency is an epidemic, but we get to tap out and reclaim our lives.
— Our bodies want and deserve vibrancy, beauty and vitality.
— Working diligently on our art, whether it’s in business or home making, is more important (and fulfilling) than trying to master quantum energetics.
— So much of what we’ve learned in popular self help movements over the last 10 years no longer applies— and perhaps it took us on a long, expensive detour.
Have a beautiful day.