Into the Blue

Hello everyone! I've been relocating back to the US these past months and have been meaning to write this final blog to end the "my story" portion of the blog. Although all my stories are a reflection of past experiences this was a look back over everything once more, and it comes with my final message. The story ended up being 17 blog posts all of which can be accessed in their correct order in the "my story" category on the blog home page. I hope you enjoy. I hope a message of encouragement and exploration is available for those that seek it.

Photo by Beatrix Neuhaus

www.beatrixneuhausphotography.com

Photo title "Into the Blue"


With my luggage, passport and work entry letter I flew to my new Island in the sun. This is not where the story ends, but a mere stopping point to reflect.


I didn't know how far I would take this story, but let's just say I'm closing the chapter here. It was always meant to be about the journey, and not the destination. The truth of the matter is that the destination never taught me anything. It was just a place. An image I put together in my head to encourage my own movement, and to grow and experience life with more intensity. The carrot on the string if you will. So what does it take to change your life? How does one just up and leave? That was the question I proposed in A Prelude.


{Excerpt}

...."how did you end up here?" I've become pretty good at being very concise and telling the obligatory "in a nutshell story" because lets face it people are interested, but they aren't that interested. And since I've been asked this question multiple times a week (sometimes multiple times a day) it gets very tiring answering and talking about yourself to complete strangers who may are may not actually be interested. It's especially difficult when it comes to a life changing event that held particular significance to your personal growth, but you tell it over and over so many times that it looses its luster. *sigh* Somewhere along the way the story became dull. I left out all the best parts. The emotions, the hardships, the darkness, the elation, the liberation, the freedom, the knowledge. Aren't those all the parts that make for a good story? The spark notes version does no justice for the human spirit. This was and is a spirited journey! I did what most are afraid to do. I lept when I couldn't see the landing. I followed an intuition. I made irresponsible decisions in order to take more responsibility for my life!

There is a quest in each of us. And it is waiting for us to begin...


We've gone through the emotions. The hardships, the liberations, the joys. And while we learn along the way I feel that reflection is a necessary undertaking. It's like applying a second coat to a freshly painted wall. Or even an old painted wall. At anytime in our lives we can look back and reflect on our past and draw new lessons from them each time. I chose to speed up this chapter at the end for reasons that weren't as clear to me as they were when I first set the goal to finish before I moved away from Turks and Caicos. You see, I've just moved back in with my mom in Arizona. Although the circumstances that are bringing me to her now are different there are some obvious similarities to the situation. And guess what? I didn't have to cross the desert in a giant rolling turd this time. I flew in very comfortably with my belongings in only 3 suitcases. I am not flat broke. I came again with a dream, but this time it's a vision. The difference to me is that with a vision- one see's how the dream is going to work. I know the power I posses now to make dreams come to fruition, and I have a better understanding and acceptance that whatever happens to me is my own doing and responsibility. Most importantly, I wrote that final blog posts right before moving here, which allowed me to recall and reflect on the thoughts and emotions I went through. It was a reminder of what my fear based thoughts and anxieties stole from me. All that worry and self doubt was really for nothing, and it prevented me from fully enjoying a very unique time of my life. Everything turned out fine in the end.

So what I've returned with now is a better mindset, and I hope more wisdom than before.

Remember Mario on Nintendo? If you played that game eventually you got so good at level 1 because you always had to repeat it. Decades later, I can still speed through level 1. I remember where all the hidden boxes of coins are and all the danger spots as well. Like now, with this new journey I catch myself thinking negative thoughts and doubting my move. And just like Mario- I knew they would come. So, I prepared for them. How do you prepare for negative thoughts you ask? You watch them. You observe them. And then you make a choice. You can believe them, or you can not believe them. You can squash them as easily as a Goomba!

I am not advocating the "just think positive" philosophy. Negative and fear based thoughts do have a crucial role in our survival.Take this for example, you're walking home and you consider taking a short cut down a dark alley. Now, you look down that alley and all sorts of fears and scenarios play out in your head. Instead of risking a potential run in with a mugger, or rapist, or serial killer (whatever your fear of choice might be) you choose a different route. Now, was there a mugger waiting in the shadows? You don't know. But was there potential for danger? Yes. No amount of positive thinking would have done you good had you chosen to walk down that alley if there was real danger.

The problem with negative thinking is when it overrides your system and you react to every thought that arises. This keeps you in fight or flight mode all the time, and fight or flight mode prevents your creativity; a much needed trait for problem solving. Without this ability it becomes difficult- if not impossible- to reach new heights in your life's potential. The goal here is to get better at identifying which negative thoughts warrant attention, and come up with a response to them instead of instantly reacting to them.


Along with observing and responding or not responding to thoughts I started to build new patterns in my ways of thinking by gathering new influencers. I once heard the brain's thought patterns described as rivers. A thought may start out as a small trickle of water and over time turn into a river that will deepen, cutting into the brain and forming a trench. The deeper the trench, the harder it becomes to change the thought pattern. If there is nothing to challenge our thoughts we may never get out of our trenches. In my second post,"Seeds of the Gods", I wrote about the people and new philosophies that I was introduced to that planted thought seeds in my cerebral landscape. Arguably, the most important first step in my journey was digging myself out of the thought trenches by challenging them with new ideas.


{Exerpt from Seeds of the Gods}

It’s a little funny. Once you reach a certain milestone it’s often amusing to look back and trace your steps. The people that seemed unimportant introduced you to a more important figure. That important figure gave an unimportant speech. That unimportant speech become important when it changed your thoughts. Those unimportant thoughts became important when they changed your life…

Do you follow me?

It’s important that you do.


In “The Big Risk| part I” I explored the moments I challenged my own thoughts and habits. This led me to take what I considered a “big risk”. I needed to let go of my current ways of thinking. To let go of my physical possessions. And let go of what I identified with. All of this in hopes that I could become more open to experience in greater depth my one precious, fleeting life.

This is the wander into the unknown. The relinquishing of answers and illusions of safety.

Only those who answer “I don’t know” can seek. And only through seeking can one come to know.



In “The Big Risk | part II” I learned that thoughts of scarcity had dictated all my life choices. There would never be enough of this, or enough of that. Finances would always be a struggle. And I would never be able to really do what I wanted because there was no money in it, or security, or insurance plan, or the word I hate the most a …retirement plan This phase was about taking a mental leap and challenging all my false beliefs. That required exposing them.


Thoughts have a way of becoming larger than life when they are left unchecked. In “Manifesting a Dream” I suggested to the reader to write down every single thing that scares you and everything you believe is standing in your way. This does a number of things. #1 it gets them out of the head space and makes them seem much more manageable than you originally suspected. #2 it exposes your thoughts. When I did this exercise, I stepped back after making a list sort of scratching my head and asking myself “Why do I think that?” This is where you identify the hidden influences that helped to mold your ways of thinking.


Excerpt from {“Manifesting a Dream”}

You can see that hidden influences that were impacting my mindset.

1. I had an idea or theory about the sequential events that were supposed to make up one’s life. Where did that come from? Was it true? These are the questions I had to ask myself.

2. I was scared. A change meant a lack of security and that I could be worse off. The smart and responsible thing to do was to keep doing what I was doing.

3. I feared putting others in a bad position and hurting their feelings to carry out my own desires.

4. I had become attached to my identity as a ballroom dance teacher and couldn’t comprehend a career as anything else.

5. I underestimated the skills I had developed in my life and career and their versatility to be applied to numerous other endeavors.

6. I feared that I could miss my window to one day have children of my own.

7. I was concerned that I would end up having to take a job that I didn’t like to meet ends meet


This blog was followed by “10 ways to help overcome scarcity mindset” where I offered practical ways of exposing and challenging one’s beliefs followed by ways to help reconstruct those thoughts to create an abundance mindset. In “Letting go” I take you through the madness of relinquishing all your material possessions, and what helped me do so along the way.


In “Quitting” I retell why it was so hard to quit my job, and this is followed by the courageous and comical journey of the trilogy made up of “The Big Rolling Turd” “The Road to El Paso” and “Death of the Rolling Turd” Of course the titles are a tribute to one of my favorite -everything goes wrong on family vacation- movies, RV.


{Excerpt from “The Road to El Paso”}

All that existed out here was a landscape of scratchy brush, dust, and fields of scattered pump-jacks over oil wells. Every slow and sad pump a reminder of their eternal laboring in the hot pits of hell as we passed through. The stations became so far apart we decided to stockpile our water and gator-aid supply to last until the next one. But about 30 minutes back on the road whatever stockpile we had had already become boiling hot and un-drinkable. The next stop we had both become delirious. I remember getting out of the car dizzy and foggy and feeling like I was every western movie cliche of the cowboy that’s been wondering in the Mexican desert for days only to finally reach a saloon, and through crusty lips and a raspy voice beg for water. If there had been a horse trough out front, I would have heaved myself into it. We walked into the station looking like crazy eyed drug addicts as we rummaged for liquid.


After the exciting trilogy of the turd mobile came a crashing low point. In "Waiting, emails and Zombies" I give my comedic interpretation of a grim situation. Because when you can't laugh, well, you will cry instead. In “They’re all gonna laugh at you” I take you through the mental turmoil of being scared and exhausted and thinking that all your dreams were aimless, self-serving and dumb. This is a journey of self-doubt and a restricted existence.


{Excerpt from “They’re all gonna laugh at you”}

As I read the email my guts turned. Disappointment came and then transformed into rage and embarrassment. I BASICALLY left on a freaking parade! All my friends, family cheering as I sat on the main float with a crown on my head waving and gloating to the commoners as I passed by. GOODBYE BITCHES!!! My smug smile catching all their rays of jealousy as I wondered off into the sunset to my life of travel, adventure, beautiful people and tropical beaches. ...and it wasn’t even going to happen. I was a fool. I was a big dumb dreamer, and I threw away everything to chase something that didn’t exist. Everyone would get to see me crash and burn.


In “Two Hungry wolves” I turn the battle with self-doubt and embarrassment around. I found out that whatever was to come of my life I was responsible for its outcome. Which wolf wins? The one you feed.


In my last entry “Jane’s Advice” I wrote about the last obstacle I faced. I almost let anger and resentment prevent me from reaching my goal. For a moment I became comfortable with less than I had come all this way for. Thankfully, a little advice that spoke to my deeper truth gave me the nudge I needed to keep going.


And so, a chapter ends in this epic odyssey. As I have mentioned before the, "In a nutshell story", gives this spirited tale no justice. It is one of risk taking, exploration, adventure, self-seeking, deconstruction and reconstruction and the willingness to die on the side of the road in the pits of hell known as middle earth Texas to get to one’s destination. It is manifesting and stumbling upon a superpower that every human on earth possess. The power to create.


You posses the power to create every aspect of your life. What will you do with it?



The first time visiting the ocean at sunset I took this photo. And I wrote this poem.


In this moment I am

Just a person in the sand.

Waves reaching my feet

in this world I've longed to meet.

Sun reaching low

the minutes passing slow.

The concept of awakening

on each wave breaking

my compass knows no direction

only the places that have my affection.


-Kelley Dominguez


Here's a look back at some of my time in Turks and Caicos working at Club Med- and meeting and marrying my forever partner in adventure.


....and what an adventure it has been.


Good luck on your adventures. May you travel far. May you travel wide. My you travel within.


Kelley





#adventure #explore #seek #travelstories #storytelling #thesirenandthepirate #motivation #intotheblue

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The Siren and The Pirate, Arizona, United States