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12 Oct 2021
Small Choices or Big Living
When I was five years old my mother decided that I was old enough to look after myself. She told me that I had proven myself to be very responsible and for that reason she felt that I no longer required a parent. I was now completely responsible for myself. I would be provided with one meal a day, but breakfast and lunch were my responsibility. I could choose my own clothes and have the bills sent to my father. I was to make all of my own appointments and go to school. There is only one rule. I was to be home every night by the time the streetlights came on. It was the sixties what can I say?
To say I was ecstatic would be an understatement. I spent the next fourteen years of my life in bliss. I did exactly what I wanted and when I wanted to do it. I made all my own appointments. To be sure I made a lot of mistakes along the way. I lost a lot of teeth for example because I couldn’t stand the dentist. No one ever told me I could choose another one. I rarely did my homework and eventually found myself failing in high school. Until that is, a teacher pulled me aside one day and took me under his wing. He said I had potential. That was a surprise. We met every day after school, and he would help me with my homework. He taught me how to study. He believed in me. I graduated with honours a year later.
Moving away from home and going to college was a reality check. My roommates lovingly informed one day that how I grew up was not normal. It cracked the façade I was living in. Emotionally devastated at not feeling accepted I started trying to fit in with society’s expectations. As a result, I lost myself for a very long time.
It was a tough way to grow up. I don’t recommend it as a parenting style. It certainly wasn’t the way I decided to raise my children. Sure, I learned how to be independent and resilient, but it came at a cost. It took me a long time to find myself, but I also learned that life doesn’t need to be that hard.
Everyday, we all have to face choices from the mundane to the profound. I found that I had a choice to either be small or be myself. Accepting who I wanted to be helped to kick start my journey to self-acceptance.
I started really thinking about what I did want out of life. There had always been this deep burning desire to be of service. How that was supposed to happen, however, was the tricky part. It was this elusive shadow hovering at the edge of my life always beckoning me onwards. If this shadowy desire ever had the decency to finally begin to manifest I needed an action plan.
My years living an unfettered life had taught me that there was always a way. Analyze what you do know, figure what you don’t and then go find the missing pieces. As a result, I knew that I could never be happy unless I was self-employed. Working five days a week wasn’t my jam. However, being able to work 4 days a week and be in control of my own schedule really appealed to me. I wanted to be in control of my own vacation time so I could more spend time with my family. If I was going to be self employed, I decided, then those where the parameters. Now all I had to do was figure out how to make that dream come true.
How that manifested surprised even me. But I found my bliss as a holistic energy practitioner. Needless to say, my decision to open my own practice was met with shock and disbelief by my family and closest friends. I stopped looking for their approval and forged ahead anyway. It wasn’t up to them. It was up to me to figure it out. After all, this was my life not theirs. All those years of having to figure things out on my own in my childhood showed me that trying to get other people’s approval was futile. I learned to accept the fact that mistakes weren’t the end of the world. All I had to do was dust myself off, stand up and try again. That took courage in more ways than one but in the end I made it work.
My passion for helping others had found a way. I discovered the secrets on how to launch, organize and manage a healing arts practice so that it could thrive. Over the years I honed my business model so that it could grow successfully. Along the way I earned the respect of my family, peers and the community. I learned the power of manifestation. I lived my dream.
Life is all about choices. Some things you have to figure out for yourself but when you are searching for answers there are courses you can take. Sometimes we get to share our lessons learned to enrich someone else’s journey. It is one of the things I love about teaching is that I get to share all my secrets on how to make a private practice work. My childhood of being left to my own devices ignited a passion to find my own way and then later, to help others make their own way as well. Everyone needs helping hand from time to time. You just have to decide whether to choose it or not. Choosing to live life on your own terms doesn’t have to be that hard. It does make life so much easier. I know. I have been there.
Atherton Drenth is the author of Intuitive Dance. Building, Protecting & Clearing Your Energy (Llewellyn Worldwide), Following Body Wisdom and the Art of Intuitive Journaling. Atherton is a Clairvoyant, Medical Intuitive and Holistic Energy Practitioner facilitating transformational healing for her clients. She has been extensively trained and certified as a Medical Intuitive and Holistic Energy Practitioner. She has been in private practice since 2000. She is also a compassionate teacher committed to helping others develop their full intuitive potential through yearly workshops. She has a private practice in Ottawa, Ontario.