Updated 11/02/2013 – See below.
The Universe is trying to get my attention. It wants me to change my attitude towards abundance. I know this because I am currently at a point where, even though I make a half-decent wage, I do not seem capable of supporting my family and paying all our bills and debts. At the moment, the more I focus on abundance, the more all those demands seem to be imploding around me. Maybe that’s because what I’m really focusing on is the opposite of abundance, lack.
I should be panicking by now. That’s what I would have done in the past. Maybe it’s because my parents grew up during the depression. I was taught at an early age that life was all about denying yourself things, about never having enough to justify spending it on yourself, about paying all your bills on time every time and saving the rest. Any deviation was selfish, and induced guilt. And being young when I learned it, I obviously had no money to speak of. I developed a low sense of self-worth that was based on money, and it was reflected in how little I was able to earn in the workplace. And of course one could only make any money doing a “real” job (i.e. suffocating drudgery). When I eventually made some progress in that area, the demands of raising a family and then going from two incomes to one mean that I now owe far more than I’m taking in.
I have been living in fear of the consequences of being in need, of lacking, and that lack seems to have increased its hold. And I haven’t been standing in my power. A perfect example is my current relationship with our landlady. We seem to be running in arrears for months now. Meanwhile there is unfinished and unstarted maintenance and repair work that has needed attention for years now, and I have not been assertive about it because of my own attitude towards lack. Because we’ve been chronically late with the rent, I’ve let lack rob me of my power (bit of a vicious circle there) and hand it to the landlady, who has not lived up to her responsibilities.
I’ve been thinking about lack/abundance a lot lately, meditating on it, energizing abundance with Reiki and asking for angelic assistance. For better or worse, I’ve come to what seems to be a Tarot Tower point. Today I had to tell the landlady that I could only give her part of what we owe her ‘til later in the month. She text back that I had better get the money by tomorrow, very “disappointed” ( i.e. angry) and that her creditors did not accept excuses. Something clicked inside me, and I replied with a “compromise” – how about I give you nothing until you finish the jobs and repairs, which we’ve been waiting for a lot longer than you’ve been waiting for money from us. Like the radiator in the living room that has never worked, and living room windows through which you can feel the winter wind blow. Our utilities bill for the last six weeks was more than the rent, which is not cheap. Correct the inefficiencies and I’ll have more money to pay your rent. What about the rewiring that’s needed doing for years? Last week a kitchen light bulb exploded with several of our small children in the living room. You want to talk about my excuses? Let’s talk about your responsibilities, which you have ignored for quite some time now.
Then I took a deep breath and calmed down, because standing in your power isn’t about anger and aggression, although sometimes you can have those feelings, and for quite valid reasons. But no, standing in your power is about stating your truth unafraid, standing up for yourself against those who seem more powerful than you. Have I met all my commitments? No. Has she met hers? No. A compromise needs to be reached, or maybe we just need to move. Maybe we’ll have to – I can’t worry about that possibility. Nothing good will come from basing my actions on fear. I have to believe in the abundance that seems to elude me right now, that I can indeed support myself and my family, and act in accordance.
The landlady was out to the house the next evening. I missed her – she spoke with my partner and explained why she was in such bad form the day before. Then the she told my partner when to expect the repairmen for the various jobs to be done. After that, she said she’d be back the following week to discuss what to do about the rent – she wasn’t even looking for money.
I don’t guarantee you’ll achieve the same results by taking the same approach, but it is amazing how, in this case, standing in my power not only freed me from the stress of worrying about what might happen, but also brought an unexpected, positive outcome.