The Universe is Always Supporting Me

The Universe is Always Supporting Me

The Universe is Always Supporting Me

Originally posted on April 23, 2020

This pandemic has tested my spiritual work. I struggled the last few weeks to get back to myself. I have been (as most of us have been) going up and down in the feelings spectrum.

Angry. Sad. Depressed. Anxious. Scared. Fearful. Optimistic. Happy. Loved. Supported. 

I know we are not alone in this. But we all  feel like our situation is different than the next persons’. And that is where anxiety takes hold like a cowboy on a horse ready to ride off into the sunset. Yehawwww. You are now under my control, anxiety replies, cunningly. I respond,  ‘Hello Anxiety, I see you. Hello Fear, would you like some tea with your cookies?’

Another great tactic, call you fear by its name. ‘Hi Fear, I see you behind the door. Come on out so I can deal with you.’

Since my last post, I have canceled my inaugural June Tuscany Retreat. It was a hard decision, but it was the right one. There was no way I would’ve felt comfortable to host six people in Tuscany. As much as I wanted to. 

I have had more stupid petty fights with my husband. They all end with a hug, thankfully. However, all of this anger is testing my spiritual growth. Basically saying to me, ‘You have more shit to work through, Katie.’ Childhood traumas, inner child issues and all of my anxiety and fears that have been hanging over me like a rain cloud for thirty-nine years. There is so much I need to let go of and forgive and stop apologizing for being the person I am.

The world needs me just the way I am.

I also created a YouTube channel for the yoga practices I have created for myself and clients. I love this creative outlet of developing my style of teaching yoga. I never liked seeing or hearing myself on camera, but here I am being me, on camera, with that voice and my disheveled hair. I am ok with it. I am proud of what I have created. Milly, my cat, has made a few guest appearances, mostly with her sitting in front of my iPad or licking her lady bits for all of YouTube to see. 

Meditation has been a daily activity for me. If I don’t have time to meditate during the day (lie, I always have time) I create art with my new set of paints. It is meditative for me. 

Today in meditation, I asked the universe what it thought about traveling to Italy this year. I got a clear response. I announced in my recent newsletter that I will still keep my Christmas in Florence Retreat on the website until I have a strong sign that it won’t happen. I am very much ok with it not running. Safety first.

My intention for this retreat is to share my beloved city to new travelers, yogis, meditators who want to rent a gorgeous apartment in the historic city center of Florence. I want to help all my friends who work with tourists. I want to give back. I want to bring them to my friend’s small vineyard in Chianti. I want to use my friend Max’s drivers to pick up my customers from the airport. I want to help my dear friend with her handmade jewelry business by hiring her to do a jewelry making class for us.

I want to help with all my heart and soul. 

My answer from my meditation was a maybe this retreat will run looking face  for December, but then the universe energetically pointed to my Florence Retreat in May and was nodding its head violently up and down to say,

THAT IS WHEN YOU ARE BRINGING PEOPLE TO FLORENCE. MAY 2021.

I always pick an oracle card or two after I meditate to ask the universe “to reveal to me what I need to know”. I picked Lord Ganesh, Infinite Abundance. Underneath the picture of the elephant headed god it reads: Obstacles are being removed. Spiritual support and connections are increasing. 

I totally feel this shift of connection and spiritual support. It is true, if after all this time in our homes we didn’t somehow go deeper within ourselves, then it was time wasted. I definitely have realized how much my spiritual work is needed to sustain my mindset for the future.

Something stuck with me in the extended message of Lord Ganesh:

It’s important at this time to move beyond the limitations of ‘it’s not meant to be’ and focus on ‘if this is for my highest good then the universe will take me there safely.’

Yes! I keep telling myself ‘if it’s meant to be, it will run’. 

However, the story needs to change now.

I am declaring it now:

If running the December retreat in Florence is for my highest good then the universe will take me there safely.

Keeping connecting to your higher self and all your queries, questions, uncertainties will be answered  and the universe will reveal to you if it is for your highest good. 

What are you working on spiritually for yourself?

Love & Light,

Kate

You Only Live Once

You Only Live Once

You Only Live Once

Originally posted Feb 28 2020

I am realizing that a loved one might not be here much longer. My grandma, Nana, has been a part of my life for my 38 years on earth. I am beyond lucky to have her still with me. She has been my rock through hard times. She has energetically sent bad vibes to people who have wronged me. Most importantly she is my link to my favorite place on earth, Italy.

Nana was born in a small town called Farneta in the region of Emilia Romagna. Born before World War II, she had a hard upbringing. Her idea of Italy is completely different than mine. She grew up in a world where war was in her backyard, famine, and uncertainty. She never experienced the Italy I know and love. I remember her first response when I told her I was going to study abroad in Florence in 2002. 

“Why would you want to go there?”

All I could respond with was “because I want to learn more about my heritage.”

She lit up when I said that.

Since then, my cousin has married an Italian from outside of Verona. My husband came into my life, a man born in my second home, Florence. I have lived in my beloved Firenze for 4.5 years as a legal resident.

Thanks to the path my Nana took from Farneta to London to America. My mother was born in a small town outside of London called Ledbury after my American grandfather swept my Nana off her feet. 

I experienced life outside of my hometown, outside of Nana’s Italy, outside of the norm. I took the leap of faith and let the net appear for me to live my already extraordinary life. 

You only live once, I always say to people. There is no reason to second guess your ideas, your path or even if you change your path for the better. Because we never know when our time is up. I do not want to be one of those people at the end of their life that says “I wish I started that Retreat business in Italy”.

Life is short and it is important to live it to the fullest.

Drink the wine, eat the cake, take that trip, explore that culture, spend the money.

Leap and the net will appear. It always does. I am a prime example of that saying. The net always appeared for me. 

I took the leap in 2005 when I quit my 9-5 job and spent the summer in Florence learning Italian. I took the leap in 2007 when I became a nanny for an Italian family. I took the leap and signed up for a travel writing workshop in Rome with my dear friend Amanda Castleman in 2008. I took the leap when I decided to apply for British citizenship and move my life to Florence in 2009. 

In Florence, I struggled, I worked paycheck to paycheck, I rode my bike everywhere, I knew all the secret side streets of Florence (to this day I can walk them in my head). I ran out of money. I couldn’t pay rent at a certain point. I was robbed. I was heartbroken. I got into bike accidents.

I fell. But I got up again. Every time. I brushed off the dirt from the cobblestones and pressed on. 

I do not regret one experience, one heartbreak, one job, one mean Italian who told me I didn’t speak right, one decision, one credit card purchase. Because they all led me to this point. The point in my life where I feel like a whole person. I lived where I wanted, ate what I wanted and always chose what was right for me. On my terms. 

People still ask me to this day, “why did you leave Italy?”

My boring answer is “the economy”. My actual answer is “I haven’t left yet.” 

A better answer now is, I needed to come home to fully develop my dream of “never leaving Italy”. 

That brings us to the present moment. I am incredibly excited to start this next chapter of my life. Living my dream of showing and teaching people about self-love and self-worth, about a country, and a city that is my real home in my heart. 

You only live once, remember that. Use all the hours, minutes, seconds in your day to live your best life. 

What would you start working on right now to live more fully?

Love & Light,

Kate

Trust in the Process

Trust in the Process

Trust in the Process

originally posted Jan 2, 2020

I never wanted to believe that something else was helping me reach my dream. I thought I had to do it all myself.

This year I learned to trust.

I learned that trusting in what the universe has to offer is what we all need to do. We are energy. Made of light and love. A spirit living a human experience. Some of us are even lucky enough to be earth angels who are there for people who need the energy of love and care. Maybe all this talk of angels or energy or spirit has got you scrunching your face saying to yourself, ‘I don’t believe in this shit’.

But I challenge you to think about experiences over the past year or decade:

Do you remember situations that you were given flat out, obvious signs not to get into that relationship, not to sign the papers for that new business, not to take that job? If you do remember having that gut feeling of ‘this doesn’t feel right’ then that was a sign. A sign from the universe, God, the cosmos whatever you believe in, your spirit guide was waving a flag in your face saying ‘hey don’t do this, this isn’t the right path, this isn’t the right job’. But you ignored it and kept down the wrong path.

I am right there with you. I did the same thing. I took jobs that promised me money, so much money. That was the wrong path. These jobs, paths did not align with my higher self. I do remember having that gut feeling of ‘don’t do this, Katie. Money will not bring you happiness, this is not aligned with your purpose.’ I soon found myself more miserable than before and ended up leaving that job.

My sign pushed me into a job I thought I would never take. I was offered this job twice before I finally took it. A position that I thought, in my eyes, was hard and would make me miserable with all the responsibilities. After a full year of being in this position, I knew this was the correct choice. None of what my ego perceived happened in this job. No stress, no pressure, no huge responsibilities that I assumed would be included. And I love it!

As for my yoga retreat business, I learned to fully embrace whatever happens, happens. If I have a full retreat or not, I am still doing it. I am doing what I set out to do. This dream started in Italy in 2009. Knowing that I probably couldn’t live in Florence forever as an English teacher, I thought there is going to be a way I can keep Italy in my life. I believe my retreat business is it. I am trusting in the path I am on. I also believe it is going to blossom into something more than just yoga. 

Fast forward to 2019, my little sister gets married in Italy in the same place I stayed when I was their babysitter 11 years prior. I reached out to the owner and she was as ecstatic as me and said ‘let’s do this!’ 

Present day, I have six amazing women who have decided to invest in me and my vision of celebrating ourselves as we are. Accepting our journey as ours, owning our own story and appreciating the amazing things about us. I trusted in the universe and the universe took care of me. 

Do you trust enough in yourself?

Do you trust in the universe, spirit, God?

Do you surrender your fears to the universe and believe you are being taken care of?

Give it a try. Let me know how it goes in the comments. 

Buon Anno a Tutti!!

Happy New Year!!

Love & Light,

Katie 

Where it Started

Where it Started

Where it Started

originally posted Oct 14, 2019

After teaching my first mindfulness meditation workshop, I felt something light up inside of me. Like this is what I have been meaning to do all my life. I have been through a lot in this young life. I was bullied, didn’t have many friends. I’ve had friends make fun of me. I was always the butt of the joke. I was never the popular one or the pretty one. I was always the outcast or the weird girl in the corner.

I went against all social norms when I was in my 20s. I had a strong urge to live abroad and out of my comfort zone. I followed a path that I knew was very hard. But it couldn’t be as hard as my adolescent years. I wanted the challenge. I wanted to go and do something no one in my family had ever done. Then there was no way to measure if you were doing it wrong or right. It was my own experience.

I wanted to know what it was like to struggle and work hard without the comfort of my family.

Meditation began for me as a place to find my voice and a safe space to express myself. If it was crying, yelling or just looking up to the sky to ask for help from my past loved ones, meditation helped me cope with past traumas and emotional hardships of my childhood. I really started to feel the effects of meditation when I was taking the first of many Bodyflow classes. At the end of the class we had meditation and relaxation, their form of savasana. I physically felt energy vibrating above my body. This energy was telling me to follow my heart and move back “home” which might have been my home in a past life.

I remember feeling tingling and something pulling me to stand up for what I want. “Don’t be afraid,” it whispered to me. Something was telling me to follow the energy that was pulling me over the big blue ocean. Yes, I was scared. Yes, I cried a lot before actually leaving. But it was what my soul yearned for. It was what made me realize that this world is so much bigger than the little town I grew up in. There are so many people who can enter your life if you move yourself to a continent many miles away.

Oh the things you will learn about people, Katie! About life. About love. About how the world is affected by the actions of your country. Why is it so hard to see that when you are right in the thick of it? You are blinded by what you believe to be so, but when you see your country, your people through the eyes of Europeans, Africans, Asians, Irish, English, Australians, you see yourself as a citizen of the world differently too.

It is a great gift to be able to live as an immigrant. I loved every second of it. Because it taught me to listen to everyone’s story. No one person’s story is the same. I saw and felt things I would have never felt if I had never left home. I opened my mind and my heart to new ways of thinking and being.

Meditation while living as an immigrant only really happened for me when I was struggling. My go to place to find comfort and support was a tiny church in the heart of Florence. Santi Apostoli. I was introduced to this gem by my art and architecture teacher, Vera, in the spring of 2002. My first study abroad experience with my university that lasted for 3 months. The best 3 months of my life. I knew that was only the beginning of my schooling in “living as an immigrant”.

More stories and lessons I have learned from coming up in future posts.

This blog will dive into many things, meditation, yoga, self-empowerment, self-discovery, but most of all, how meditation has improved my life thus far.

I hope you’ll enjoy this journey with me.

Light & Love,
Katie 

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