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"I feel depressed and completely lost to myself"

Dear Ayal,

Thank you so much for the opportunity to receive your beautiful insight. I have read through some of your responses and I am very intrigued and impressed by your sweet spirit. My problem is one of feeling disconnected from myself. For many years now, I have suffered from feeling depressed and completely lost to myself. This would come as a big surprise to anyone who knows me as I am usually quite functional and can appear very outgoing and together. I can usually see all kinds of options for other people's problems and they often will come to me for advice. Ironically, however, I am usually in a state of great pain emotionally. I spend most of my free time reading all kinds of self-help books (over the years I have collected hundreds) in an effort to "finally figure out what is wrong and what to do about it". I am very interested in the metaphysical and have been since childhood.

Lately, I have been doing a lot reading about soul retrieval and for some reason this really resonates with me - more than the dozens of other techniques I have read about. I feel there have been so many junctions in my life that parts of my soul might have taken flight. I have had a lot of trauma in my life and I'm sure that in part this contributes to my state. My main feelings are of hopelessness, loss, inertia and self-hate. I view almost every situation in my life as a failure. I am also disgusted by what I see as my complete self-centeredness. I feel that maybe if I spent more time helping others, I wouldn't have time to create these problems for myself. I also feel that I am guilty of completely overlooking the positive things in my life and focusing on the negatives only. I feel as though there is a very large part of myself that isn't here with me - that I am trying to "soldier on" through life without this huge part of myself as a necessary resource.

I can remember having three major episodes of depression in my life. The first was just before graduating from high school when it hit me that my life was going to be totally bleak (self fulfilling prophecy). The second was five years later after the birth of my daughter when I was in the process of separating from her father. The third was about five years ago when my mother was displaying symptoms of Alzheimer's (paranoia) that were very confusing, upsetting and embarrasing to me. I actually went to a doctor that time and she prescribed prozac for "chronic low-grade depression". Although that worked, it didn't seem to help with the underlying problem - it just seemed to mask it.

I feel that the traumas in my life have somehow greatly contributed to my state but I've never been exactly sure how. For what it's worth, however, I will try to briefly descrbe them: I was born when my mother and father were in their late forties and my two sisters and brother were much older than me. The closest in age to me is twelve years older. I was born just a short while after my mother had a very traumatic stillbirth (a daughter). When I was two, my oldest sister Ann died (at 18) of a previously undiagnosed congenital heart defect. I was recently told by an older cousin, that "It's a shame I didn't really know my parents prior to Ann's death because they were completely different people."

I have only very vague recollections of Ann or her death. My dad was sick for my whole life with a heart condition that kept him out of work and my mom always worked - long before it was the norm. My mom and dad fought all the time. Nasty, loud and scary fights. My older brother was arrested and sent to prison right after my sister's death and I barely knew him as upon his realease he married and moved out of the house. He and my father fought constantly. My other sister, Eileen had been diagnosed with polio as a baby and was paralyzed and had cognitive difficulties. (It turns out all these years later, we recently found out she actually has Cerebral Palsy). She struggled to learn to walk and is quite functional today - having even raised two kids (with a lot of help from my mom and me).

When I was nine, my dad died of a heart attack. I was the only one home with him at the time. Both of us had had a premonition that day. I actually had a communication from him after death on that day, that I didn't tell anyone about until adulthood. I couldn't understand why he hadn't gotten out of bed all day and at one point, I reached out to touch his arm and just as I did I heard his voice in my head say "Everything will be alright". I don't remember anything after that until my mother came home from work. It turns out I had been in the apartment with him for the whole day without even seeking any help (my grandparents lived downstairs).

Following my dad's death, it seems the whole extended family began to die off. My grandparents, most of my aunts and uncles. Life got even harder after dad died and although the fighting between mom and dad stopped it only restarted with my mother and sister. Every night they would have huge arguments because my sister couldn't cope with people in her various jobs and she'd come home complaining. She also wouldn't help out in the house or keep her room clean. I began to basically live out on the streets with my friends, only coming home when I had to.

The next steps were, of course, alcohol, drugs and sex. Somehow I never managed to stay out of any big trouble. I knew my mother couldn't take that but I stayed on the fringes of the "bad" side of teenagehood. I never went to college although I got really good in high school without even trying - most times I didn't even crack a book. My whole life I had loved to draw but I didn't do anything with that either. Instead, I married early as a means of escape. I married a guy I hardly even knew and it turned out that he had been hiding the fact that he had "Tourette's Syndrome" - involuntary movement and bizarre behavior coupled with screaming curse words at the top of his lungs. Pregnant with my only child, I realized I just couldn't take it - he used to drink every night in an effort to self-medicate. Because of my daughter, I walked out of that marriage. It was an extremely traumatic time in my life. As a single mother, I got the best job I could and with a great deal of help from my mom, I turned my life around to some degree.

Within a few years I was married again to an old friend from my childhood/teenage years. He had turned his life around too and it seemed like a perfect match. Within a few years, however, it became obvious that he was one of those "controlling" men. I couldn't gain weight, always had to look perfect, couldn't take a drink of alcohol, etc. That marriage ended too following an affair I had entered into (another source of great trauma) with my boss. Well that affair has turned into a marriage of almost fifteen years now in which I'm quite happy.

My mother lived with us up until her death three years ago. We were pretty close although she was a very strong personality and I always felt kind of bullied by her. Her death at 82 of pancreatic cancer was very quick and sudden. She died at home and the death itself was quite peaceful and beautiful. Now, I am pretty much in charge of my sister and she is living with us pending housing. Last year, our lives took a tremendous turn and we sold our surburban home the same week my daughter and my stepchildren all graduated from college. We bought a much smaller, country house right on the river with a small motel. Because of the years of neglect, the house is currently unlivable. My husband and I and our three dogs are living in one unit of the motel and my sister and nephew are living in the other. Because my husband and I have been financially depleted, we are doing all the work on the house ourselves which means it is slow going.

A few years ago, I decided to take my art more seriously and began doing a lot of sculpting and dollmaking. Now, my studio is completely packed away and I don't have it as a diversion any more. Although it's absolutely beautiful here, I feel myself getting more and more isolated. I have actually become afraid of most social interactions and I'm very embarrased about our living conditions. My daughter has practically disassociated herself from us, living in an apartment with her boyfried in his parents' house. I feel as though my life is falling apart and I don't even know where to start. I feel that the universe has been trying to send me messages my whole life that I haven't or wouldn't understand. I'm sorry that this is so long - I don't know how else to do it.

Do you think I sound like a candidate for soul retrieval? If so, can you suggest how I would go about getting it done? Is it possible my soul has "signed on" for this life of confusion, pain and frustration? Or have I completely missed my soul's purpose in life? I realize and I believe that all of my problems are self-created, and that someone else with the exact same set of circumstances would have turned their life into something really positive. What am I missing and why can't I find it? Thank you for your patience in hearing me out.


Hi - well, what is showing up for you is that you are getting something out of having all of these problems and situations, and what you are getting out of all of this is that it perpetuates you being in fear. You are attached, or addicted, one could say, as most of us are until the point we choose to change it, to living in fear.

What is up in the Universe as top priority right now, very, very strongly, is that we are all being asked to choose, to commit, to live from either Love, or Fear. If you make your choice to commit to living from Love, and you mean it with all of your heart, and you state an unequivocal intention to that effect, the Universe will start moving your life around - and what is not Love will drop away, internally and then, of course, externally.

So, it's up to you. You have been very much embroiled in the belief that relationships mean conflict. This is a core belief. If you choose to change it, go to the Laws of the Universe and play with the formula for changing core beliefs.

You might have some interesting stuff to play with if you were to make a list, 2 columns, and in one write down all that you fear. Then in the next column, write down what you choose to change it to. Then release the fears through stating your intention of what you are now willing, ready, able, and intend changing it into. Maybe do 1 from the list every 2 days. Remember, with manifesting intentions, you must feel what you are choosing to manifest, feeling it as being already here and present.

There is a wonderful story of a Native American shaman who, when asked to do a ceremony to bring rain, goes up to the top of a hill and stands there for a few minutes and then says, "OK. Let's go." And the people with him are dumbfounded, and they say: "But you haven't done the ceremony!" And he says: "Sure I did. I stood here and fully immersed myself in feeling what it feels like to stand in the rain."

What you can do to support yourself making these changes are the following:

  1. Let go of your hatred, resentment, and bitterness, (through intention and conscious awareness of what you are choosing to operate from) and make a decision in each and every moment to choose Love. Ask yourself, in every situation, every response: "What would Love do?" Love is a choice, and we make it moment by moment.
  2. Say: "I intend that all the parts of me that got something out of having these problems are healing now. I sponsor myself to the Creator, the Cosmic All, the Masters, and the Creator Entity to have: God's clearing energies to remove all adversities to the Planes." Twice a day for 1 year.
  3. Get in touch with the Foundation for Shamanic Studies and take some classes to learn about doing shamanic journeying, and then do some journeys to clear these issues around living in fear.
  4. Look into the issue of personal honor and self respect - a 3rd chakra issue (check out Caroline Myss's book, Anatomy of the Spirit, and read it, giving some special focus to the 3rd chakra.
  5. Order an Aura-Soma essence - the # 3 oil, and use it daily.
  6. To repair the aura: Stand with your arms upraised at a 60 degree angle each from the body, with fingers closed, thumbs out. Hold for one minute. You can also accompany this with what is called the Breath of Fire. This is a very fast, non stopping breath, through the nose, in and out as fast as you can. It's important not to do this breath too long to start with, as it is very powerful and you can get very woozy or pass out if you do it too much. So, start with it a bit it a time as you do this exercise until you can do it for a full minute. It is a deeply purifying breath and does create a fiery energy in the body. Be sure to drink a lot of water all day and immediately afterwards to flow out the toxins. Twice a day for3 weeks.

Blessings, Ayal

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