WELCOME BACK

April 2016: After three years away from this blog I'm back. It was originally started so I could make sense of the madness that ensued after my marriage to a sociopath. Much has changed, grown and been created since then - including reclaiming my full birth name Melanie Pledger.
My voice has become stronger, and so has my mission. I'm here on this earth to share the life-changing magic that developed as a result of my personal journey overcoming abuse, abandonment, manipulation and betrayal. I've learned that many of the rules we've been taught about life are fundamentally wrong. They've been misunderstood by most, misused by some, and deliberately misdirected by the manipulators who live and breathe among us. I've also learned that it's easier and more enjoyable than people think to shift things around...
Now I know there was a reason for it all. So now I'm back to fill in the gaps. To share what I've discovered, and dispel the myths that don't serve us... I look forward to reconnecting with old friends, and discovering new ones.
Thank you for being here.
Mel xxx

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Forget The Cabaret - Life Is A Pendulum Old Chums

Longcase clock (Grandfather clock) pendulum
Today has been one of those weird ones - you know the times where you actually know what's about to happen (what needsto happen) yet when it does it still takes you by surprise, and you find yourself dealing with waves of emotions to be digested, reflected upon and made sense of? I guess it could be likened to a school exam, where you know in your heart of hearts that you've done really badly and yet are still shocked to receive the official confirmation in the form of a bad result?

The funny thing for me is that before today day had even started, I was already in the place of knowing and choosing this particular outcome - so the news was no surprise. No, the news was just the natural tidy up of lose ends, burnt and beaded threads that had been flapping in the wind, slapping frantically against my bare skin, urging me to wake from a dream that had turned in to a nightmare.

Like I said - a weird one. The signs are always here. There's always something going on. Always a truth that rumbles gently - or finally crashes around using every available method - until it's noticed, and actioned. Co-incidence and serendipity - being in the flow - allowing and enjoying - when those are the kind sensations and experiences that fill my time, then I know I'm acting from my own inner wisdom. When there are struggles and difficulties, that's when I know there's a lesson to be learned - but it can sometimes take a while for me to heed the lesson, however good the outcome will be! Change, you see - even the good stuff can be daunting!

On Saturday I enjoyed a particularly helpful Skype conversation with a friend of mine (thanks, Grasshopper, you know who you are!) - one of those so called happy co-incidences, because we hadn't spoken for ages and yet he'd popped in to my head just half an hour or so before I received his call. Concerned that I appeared somewhat troubled, he offered to take me through a new coaching process he'd been learning. Of course I agreed - I love this stuff, and was also keen to quieten the inner battles that had been tiring me. So, with his help, and with him acting as my guide and my witness, we walked through some of my core beliefs. To my surprise, it turned out that I still had the last vestiges of an old and deeply engrained parasitic belief that for years had been burrowed tick-like in to my being. The old and worn-out song that I'm not good enough. Small - tiny, in fact - but there none the less. So through our honest conversation, and following this new process, he helped me to at last release myself from the remaining defiant pincers that had, until that point, still kept a part of themselves embedded in to my flesh. Gotcha you sneaky, slippery little sucker! Phew. That feels better!

And, out of the blue, another co-incidental bit of help came my way this afternoon when I dropped in to see another friend on my way back from town. I'd expected to share a coffee and the usual welcoming, questioning female chats I enjoy so much with his wife - but she was out. So instead he and I sat in the sunshine discussing life, the universe and all that is - or was, or could be, or might still be. It was a delicious and most unforeseen pleasure I was least expecting - perhaps we drank too much of that really strong coffee - or perhaps it really was serendipity. I don't know for sure. But the resulting free-flow of conversation was both surprising and enlightening - and a most unexpected gift.

He spoke to me, quite candidly, about the 'inferno' that he (and others) recognise burns within me - insistent, voracious, and on occasions somewhat threatening to others. He spoke about my constant drive to search, adventure, test, push, overcome and bloody well 'do' more than is necessary. He pointed out that (my nature being as it is) I am likely to always continue along that path in one way or another. I spoke about the concept that we all seek 'witnesses' in our life - people who can share our experiences, people who validate our opinions through agreement or variation. We both explored the idea that without feedback and conversation (listening, speaking, sharing, comparing) we confine ourselves to a grey, one-dimentional palette that limits our experiences. He also threw me some facts and posed me some questions, likening the human journey to the swinging of a pendulum.

Enjoying the coffee and sunshine, together we discussed the notion that, like a pendulum, when we surge in positivity (or negativity) the natural course of nature's law is that we'll experience the same in the alternate spectrum - the equal and opposite natural swing and balance of life. Indeed, a notion that for years I've shared with those who care to listen - and also with those who (in my younger years when all this inner-game stuff was a new obsession) I would corner and pester until either they understood the point I was making or would simply walk away. Yup, I guess you could say I've always been a little intense!

My friend gave me some wise and honest advice, based on his observations of me over the eight years that I've lived here in France and had the honour to call him my friend. Not usually one for speaking out, it came as a welcome surprise to hear his well thought out opinion. He suggested that my challenge is to find the normality within the wild swinging of the pendulum that has, until now, been the blueprint of my existence. To seek the normality as the pendulum speeds over it again and again. To notice exactly what normality is, and to enjoy it. The wry and knowing smile spoke volumes"those who find it say it's much closer than most people think... isn't that the stuff you study and teach Mel?"

His advice beautifully mirrors that of a conscious and very personal intention I made public a short while ago - my decision, my choice, my declaration to now live my life for me - for Mel Carnegie, age 46 and a quarter. To find out, from a place of safety, who I really am. To put myself first and to heed my inner self. To let my intuition grow, thrive, and guide me. Because, no longer willing to play "the fighter" or "the survivor"... I've realised that I've finally "done it". I've made it through. I AM enough (I always was - doh! - don't you hate it when that happens?) and now my  conscious focus is to enjoy my life. To appreciate the here and now. To wake up and smell the coffee, or slow down and admire the roses - whatever phrase we choose... whatever pace we enjoy.

My friend, today, was advising me just to be me - to enjoy the 'normality' that is actually what life is about. I shared with him my understanding of who I think I really am, how I really choose to enjoy my live - which is to live a simple life, to love and to be loved. My friend smiled.

And guess what, as I'm typing these words, the track that's just started playing in the background right now (as if by coincidence?) is one of my all time favourite tracks that alway signals forward movement for me - Eddie Reader's "I'm In The Right Place Now"... as I said at the beginning, funny ain't it?

I have a feeling that I'll always be an adventurer. I'll always seek more from life. I'll question, I'll analyse, I'll push, I'll prod, I'll poke... I'll piss people off - and help others to find their pathway... and you know what? I'll always keep finding more to excite and engage me. I already have the best memory albums of life's travels - and there's plenty more space to fill. Bring it on - gently and steadily from now on please.

The news I started this post with, is that the Journeyman I spoke of in a previous post has gone his own way. It's certainly true that he has taught me much - mainly that I'm worth so much more than I was once willing to settle for. So, to you, Journeyman, I thank you. Class complete. See you in another lifetime my friend - our work here together this time around is done.


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Saturday, 2 April 2011

Broken...?

World In My Eyes
Yup... because broken, bust, wiped out, knackered are all certainly all words I'd use to describe the way I'm feeling right now. Others may well choose to use other adjectives - prickly, unreasonable, bad-tempered and generally difficult would be some of my guesses based on reactions and expressions I've witnessed in response to my behaviour over the past few days!

The first three months of this year have already proven to be one heck of a ride - in so very many ways. At the time, though, I knew exactly what I was signing up for - and it certainly has over-delivered on the results I was expecting. More than just a means to an end, I've achieved more than I thought could be expected in such a short space of time - and I've done it by asking more of myself than I would have asked even of the strongest mental or physical athlete. And yes, my friends, I've done it. Yes, I knew I'd hit some kind of meltdown once I had the chance to stop and let go, that was inevitable, part of nature's way... but this? This level of fatigue, exhaustion, aching and what can only be described as mental and physical wipeout? No, I must admit that I certainly was not expecting quite such a spectacular collapse. Even by my own measurements, this is really quite a big one!

And I KNOW it's a good thing - because I've been here before. Although this time I'm not in the middle of a struggle, nor am I 'fighting' for or against anything or anybody. There are no battles to be won, there are no more legal or emotional mazes to be worked through. Nobody and nothing is threatening me. I am under no pressure. Everything is, in fact, under control and running its own natural course. Yes, ok, there are still some tweaks needed along the way - but in the grand scheme of things the war has been won. It's just a matter of bringing home the last remaining troops.

And yet... and yet... I am totally and utterly depleted. I am inexplicably teary, and unable to focus on anything for more than a few minutes before my head starts pounding and I lose concentration. Nothing left. All gone. Finished.  Over and out. And at the very same time I know that all of this simply heralds more positive growth for me. It's another invitation to let go of the old - to break through to more than I've been before by allowing my self to be broken. Because broken I am.

Just yesterday, for example, I received some news that I wasn't expecting. No great shakes, just another wall of bureaucracy that I'll need to jump over before this divorce can be finalised. It's a paperwork trail that requires me to hire yet another professional to complete this specific process because, as I was told by a sympathetic but powerless representative of the company "that's just the way we do it here". Do-able and, in a way understandable, it still sent me in to a tailspin and I simply couldn't muster the energy to get up, get going and get on with it. So instead I moved in to the kitchen and made myself a cup of mint tea.

And here is where I'm realising that 'broken' may well actually mean 'breakthrough'. Because just a few months ago, I would not have let any such reaction stop me or even break my stride. I'd have pushed on through regardless, drawing on my seemingly endless reserves of energy, digging deeper and pulling on whatever resources I could find (personal or external) to get me through. Now, however, because I'm feeling so very broken (for want of a better word) I am instead allowing myself to feel the blow and instead do something to sooth myself. I have quietly walked away from the situation, knowing that it will all work out. Knowing also that I'm much better off looking after myself in the moment rather than pushing harder still to solve something that, quite frankly, can wait just a little while longer. A few hours or days - even weeks - are going to make no difference whatsoever when all is said and done.

Speaking with my very wise friend Anna last night, she instructed me to take my own medicine and spend the next 48 hours only doing things that I know are good for me. Reminding me to listen to myself, to tune in, and to be who I really choose to be. I nodded sagely, smiling all the while she was telling me this, as her words were pretty much exactly the same instructions I had given to a dear friend only a couple of days earlier. She, like me, is in the middle of a change point. A period in her life when, for the first time ever, she has the opportunity to indulge herself, to discover who she is and what brings her happiness. And she's been surprised to discover that she actually doesn't know the answer... yet.

Me? Do I know the answers? Well, to be honest, sometimes I think I do... most of the time, though, I'm very happy to say that I don't - because that way, in my map of the world at least, it means I'm open to learning and growing. Having said that, I am perfectly aware that I can be particularly stubborn when it comes to getting my point across. I also know that I will resolutely stick on a mission if I believe I can help or add value... sometimes when, in hindsight, it may have been wiser to let go more quickly. But hey, with hindsight we're all experts eh?

I do believe though, right from the core of my being, that what may well feel to me is 'a broken Mel' is in actual fact just another set of walls and barriers crumbling down. In my last post I said I'd finished with being the survivor, the victor in any challenge. I said that now I choose to live my life in peace and joy. Well, I've learned along the way that the power of intention is not something to be messed with. I've realised that when I speak of a desire or choice something from a soul-level, it invariably happens - and inevitably brings along with it the bulldozers and demolition crews necessary to batter through my stubborn resistance to making whatever adjustments are necessary.

So now, this time, I'm going along with the ride and enjoying the scenery. This time I have the opportunity to watch what's happening along the way. I can take in the sights, enjoy the atmosphere and yes, smell the coffee as my wishes come true. As the walls crumble down, so a new door is revealed. A door that had been hidden before. A door to another place - to more of my soul - to an even deeper authentic sense of who I really am.

So yes, I am broken. But I think rather that this is finally the end of an automatic survival and fighting habit that I've fine tuned over the years. Don't get me wrong, that habit has served me very well - exceptionally well in actual fact. And those warrior skills are ones I know I can call on at any time. Now, though, the battle is done. I'm giving up the fight, and I'm learning to live with me - just as I am.

OK, then who am I exactly? Well... I am that little girl, no more than four years old, who loves to fly her kite on the beach. The little girl who roars with laughter as the wind whips at her clothes and hair, while the sea applauds with its rhythmic smacking, chuntering and pulling of the pebbles as wave after wave hits the shore. I'm singing in to the wind, imagining wild stories of mythical creatures and magical people, dancing and twirling over the pebbles, swept along by the thrill of it all and the joy of the moment. I know how to ask for more of the things I like, and for less of the things I don't like. Because I'm safe to do that, and I know my requests are heard - and heeded. There may be times I stamp my foot in frustration or fury - but I'm easily soothed and always willing to learn a better way to understand as well as to be understood.

That was me. And now this IS me. All that is left is to continue accepting more and more of who I am - because you know what? I may be frustrating. I may be demanding. I may at times be too loud, and at others too quiet. No, I'm far from being perfect - but fundamentally, underneath it all, I reckon I'm a pretty good egg! And, as everyone knows, you can't make an omelette without breaking an egg :-))
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