When I was I my twenties, I took a course on Feng Shui. For those who are unfamiliar with Feng Shui, it is the Chinese geomancy. Feng Shui means “wind -water”. It is an ancient practice to use energy forces to harmonize an individual in their space, whether it be one’s home or office. I wanted to learn ways to apply it to my home and workspace. At the time, we needed all the help we can get to have positive Qi at the casa and at work.

Even though I have moved over ten times since then, I still apply the basic principles to our home today. I am not here to educate one on the importance of this practice, but I will tell you one lesson I learned and why I still do it today.

The teacher asked if we wrote in journals? Proudly I boasted (remember I was in my twenties), “Yes, I have journaled ever since I could put pen to paper”. Unimpressed, She next asked the group, “Do you keep your journals”? I again, said, “Yes.I have every one of them”. I think she rolled her eyes at me, and then told us our homework was to get rid of ALL of them. I was like WTF? I could understand how clutter created chaos, and mirrors in some rooms are best in some and not so great in others, etc... but her explanation how all the energy we scribbled onto those pages became trapped old energy and we must clear the energy out of our living spaces so we can live in the moment. The present. The NOW..... All I could think was how will I remember what I did when I was a child, a wild teenager? There will be no shred of evidence I was ever here! And then she asked, “Do you really want your children reading about your past”? I don’t remember any thing she said after that. But I remember dragging the trash can down to my basement and throwing every single journal into that bin. I remember thinking I was going to regret this action, but at the time, I could not imagine my kid reading the mindless drizzle I spewed all over those pages. I was no Anne Frank or Anais Anin. My writing was mostly consumed of my miserable childhood, or as a teen my current boyfriends, how much I weighed... oh my god honestly I thought about burning the books, but I didn’t have access to a fireplace at the time. I couldn’t have thrown them in the trash fast enough. Throwing the journals (over a 100 of them) into the trash, I felt a weight lift from my body. A heaviness I held as long as I can recall. I was actually happy to drag that heavy trash can to the corner and leave it behind FOREVER.

Fast forward, I still journal every single day. Sometimes it is just a few lines, a sketch or if it’s a full moon it might be a couple of pages. Most of what I write now is about ideas I have for paintings, or whack a doodle dreams with my besties. I hardly think about those journals from the past. Now, I write so small, I simply cannot go back and read them even if I wanted to. I am grateful for that eye rolling teacher urging me to stay in the moment and be grateful for who I am. I am even more grateful my son never had to read what I wrote about my family, or how bat shit boy crazy I was in my teens, or me dealing with an eating disorder that controlled my every thought.

My whole round about point is not to get you to study Feng Shui, but to encourage you to clear yourself of your past. No, you don’t have to throw your journals in the trash, but think about why you hold onto it. And more importantly, is it stopping you from moving on? Creating the life you deserve and desire? I know for me, letting the past go, was the beginning of the new me. Every day, I thank G-d for THIS day, my health, my family and friends. I am even grateful I went through all the hell I did (most of it, self induced). It made me the strong woman I am today. This is why I paint strong women. I paint a story instead of trying to write about it. I hope you do something to empower your SELF. I hope you join me and Be Here Now.

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