What Do I Need?

It has become very clear that I need to put all of my energy into building myself a life in a very practical way right now, which means I am taking a break from writing. I am excited about what this redirected energy can help me accomplish and look forward to giving myself the things I need to be happy and healthy in the present moment.

I need to give myself this gift and truly allow what is meant to happen at this point in the journey to be revealed. So here I go………





Happy Birthday!

My Philosophy for life , “I Am Love In Action” is now officially ONE year old today and WOW what a year it has been!


(The first event held by “I Am Love In Action”, March 2013, to raise money for my journey to Rwanda.)

As I sit in bed this morning with an earache that radiates into my jaw and head, I am reminded of how this idea came to exist. It was each tiny moment of my past that I chose not to Love myself that lead me to ruin. It was small things like not saying the words “No”, “Stop”, “Rest”, “Be Kind”, “Enough”, “Love”, “I Need”. These words, had they been spoken or listened to in the moments that they were called into my mind would have changed my life entirely. I know this because they are the words that I used to get me here, to the other side of ruin,  to the creation of a new life from the rubble. So I know that this earache is asking me to “Listen” and “Love “myself.

It’s time to reevaluate what I am doing with the knowledge, experience and life that I have created. Time to reassess what it is that I need to do next and how I need to show myself Love. I have been unable to see my ability to support myself clearly and now is the time to step into my skills and unlock the power I hold to create what I need. I know what  I need. I know I can give it to myself and so that is what I am setting in motion. My intentions are shifting. My lens has been wiped. My energy is needed in new places now and it is time to give to myself.

I have the potential to create a life that allows me to Thrive with the skills that I have acquired in my life up to this point and it is my action that makes that happen, no one else can do that for me. So this next year is about doing just that, putting even more “Love In Action” but with a focus more on myself and watching to see how the ripple effect then impacts others.

On this note, I will be changing the format, intention and purpose of this blog. It doesn’t fit me anymore. It needs to grow up, change with me and feed me in all the right ways. I want more time and energy to be dedicated to my growth and less to my story or to sharing it with others as I feel this will happen naturally.  Simply be who I am. Let my life be a demonstration for others to witness and learn from. Being me is enough.

I celebrate today by making choices that will lead me towards more Joy and continued Healing for tomorrow. Embracing what is here for me and living life  for the present moment is what is being asked of me. A step back will lead me two steps forward if I do it with awareness, patience and trust, which I know I can.

I NEVER could have imagined all that happened in this year and I am excited about the things I am imagining for my future!

Dx Ego Strikes Again!

Believe it or not, I like to keep to myself and am very quite most of the time. This journey has allowed me to go deep into my own mind, body and soul to explore who I am but in classic Scorpio style I like to go to extremes (like a Blog that spills all the beans, all the time with no holding back). Those extremes are hitting me hard this week as I am faced with allowing people into my process and am being shown parts of me that I don’t usually look at. Even with conscious self reflections I still get stuck in ruts, patterns and new “old” ways of being, thinking and acting. Allowing others into my life is a vital part of the process.


I have put on some serious blinders in terms of my responsibility to myself and to my potential. All that I have done up to this point, all the extremes included, were necessary and now I am once again faced with my own self created reality. I have these intense “What the Fuck am I doing?” moments and I realize how deep I have gotten myself and how much rebuilding needs to happen in order to get to the place I want to be in this moment.


(Only a few years ago I owned my own home. It had a huge beautiful garden with a fountain and secret “Hammock Haven” that I designed and created as well as  built the front deck and window decor. Everything I owned was exactly what I wanted, I never settled, even if it meant 50 trips to the Antique market. Talk about extremes.)

Basically I am being met with the consequences of my actions over the last 4 years and also seeing the doors that are there to help get me out of this place I now exist within. I live in a world where I want everyone to care about others and give up as much as I am willing to in order to help, which would in turn mean that someone would do the same for me- this is where my EGO comes into play.  This is why I feel like it is ok for me to not own anything and not have a job to support myself but this is NOT the world that I actually live in, it is not reality. Although I have a large community of people that have helped me get to this point and have solidified my belief in community and the innate goodness within us all, it is now time for me to become one of the supporters and that means I need to step up my game.

Ego is a very powerful part of all of us and it can be a wonderful tool. I have experienced, with myself, mostly something known as “Reverse Ego”, which basically means that I can out do anyone with how “worse off” I am in my life and that is how I would get the attention that I crave at a very deep level to sooth a lack of Self-Love. It used to be around schooling, then debt, then health, then what I gave up to heal myself. Now I am at a place where I use the volunteering, humanitarian work  to make myself look…… well……more selfless lets say. I am talking about really subtle layers here, not conscious choices at the time.

Ultimately it comes down to Fear. Fear of my own potential, my responsibility as this Human Being and of my own Power. As I allow people into my life to support me and push me, I get to see this fear more clearly and I am faced with my deepest fear – my Self. Today was no exception, thank you Bunny!


I am afraid to go back into Nursing because I am afraid of myself, actually of how I care for myself. I watch as I give, give, give to others. Even now and even while doing what I feel is my calling, I still see how I put my own needs last in many cases and being dependent on others only makes that worse.

I tell others to always do what’s best for them and yet here I am a talented, strong, capable, creative woman with a Degree, many certifications and certificates to hang on the wall and I have no money, no home, and hardly any clothes?? What the heck? What am I trying to prove and to who, because honestly no one really sees the point – not even myself anymore! The story is old, worn out and I’m bored of hearing myself talk about it.

This has now become my “M.O”, my schpeel (sp?), my lifeline, my hook to capture the attention I seek from others. I don’t want to be a pity party and I don’t want to be “Debbie Downer”. So I need to ask myself some hard questions and be real very with my answers.


(Art Therapy at the Kikiwak Hotel! This is the drawing of my Fear and me telling it to take a hike! Next step…ceremonial burning!)

Why am I doing this?

Its a habit now. I have let practices that served a purpose in the short term become long term solutions. I need to update what I want, where I am going and what I need. I need to find a balance and support myself so I can support others.

Does it still serve me?

No. It is holding me back. I am holding myself back. I am making an agreement with myself right now to take a step closer to my potential by facing this fear by re-entering into parts of my past that once were wounded. I now trust that I am Healed enough to do it in a way that will not only protect me but also elevate me to new heights.

Is this who/how I want to be?

No. I want to own my life and live it to the fullest. Take away all the pressure to be perfect, take away the games, judgements and the tricks to gain approval. I just want to be me. I am the only one holding the keys to my reality.

Is this what I want?

No. What I want is to open up to all parts of myself and enjoy all that I get to offer. I am a great Nurse, always have been and now I am equip to handle the environment in a new way, this is a great way to practice Practical Yoga! I can use this skill, Nursing, to facilitate my business and to support my creative needs as a Human, Artist and Humanitarian. I do not lose everything that I gained from my experiences since leaving the profession or any of my other qualities if I choose to do something that earns me a salary that can facilitate the life I want. If anything, I lose those qualities if I don’t do this. This is a major tool that I have in my hand and it can do myself and others a lot of service. I need to do this for myself.

What’s stopping me?

Self-Love. More layers of Self-worth and Love are at the roots of these next steps. I know that when I take the steps the Love will be revealed to me. If I don’t, then I will not see it or feel it. I know its there because it is what I am made of, all of us are of the same cloth -Love.


(This is what Self-Love looked like at age 27, the year I began to emerge as my true self! http://www.amysenecal.com)

This healing journey has taken me on a path that has lead me out of the pack, but this does not mean that I am better than anyone else or that I can’t relate or live in the world as it is now. I do not want to be separate. Underneath all the searching is a desire to understand all of us, to know how to be ONE. I ventured on a  journey into understanding human kind and what I found was that we are all the same. I have detached myself somehow and now I am aware that I need more connection and to do that I have to let people in. Here there is fear.

This feels like a very big step as I have been extremely cautious about who and what I let into my life over the past 4 years, with a few mistakes along the way that clearly lead me back to my path. I kept my world fairly small and selective. As I bravely enter into a life that not only puts me back in the it bigger picture but also back on track with my destiny.

Am I ready for my Destiny?

YES and it’s pretty clear what the next step is!


(The North Saskatchewan River. Taken as I walked across the bridge from Opaskwayak Cree Nation to the Town of The Pas. Beautiful!)

Here I Am World

I have never lived my life more authentically then I am in this very moment. I returned from Rwanda with a swagger that is unshakable. My time there showed me the strength and confidence that was just waiting to be seen, other people have told me  they see it but I needed to see it for myself. I transformed daily. With every corner a new experience awaiting to call on my trust and inner knowing.


(This  is the first of many dresses  I had made while in Rwanda. This was an amazing creative adventure. I began to step into parts of myself that I had put away until the moment I was ready to explore them. I knew I would know when the time was right!)

From hailing a “Moto” or eating strange food to dancing in large groups of men and speaking a new language – it all asked me to step up and be who I really want to be. Rwanda was the finishing touch to this amazing journey of healing. It showed me where I was, who I was, and how far I have come. I come away from this  experience more my Self than I have ever been and I know  it is but a peak into my potential. I am soooooooooo proud of that girl who walked out of her home, her engagement, her career and her life with the intention of healing at all costs. I continue to be proud of myself and all the hard work that I have done to get where I am today and I am not afraid to say it!


(You are as your name speaks to Amanda – Worthy of Love! I so proud of the girl in this picture! Even at your lowest you still knew your worth and were willing to fight for it, you are a survivor!)

I have seen my life unfold into a magical, amazing adventure that not only heals me everyday but also does great things for  those around me. I know through my experiences in life that we are all connected and what we do impacts everyone.  I also know that there is no such thing as “Good” or “Bad” as one  always leads to the next in some way shape or form. The impact that my choices have on others can sometimes lead to Kaos, Ruin, Heartache, and Pain as well as Love, Joy, Inspiration and Peace – all of which are necessary for change and growth.


(My first official, self guided project: Love Hoop Rwanda. A project to introduce something I love and brings me joy to the people of Rwanda. Venturing into the remote villages of Nyanza to share this gift with the people helped me build the confidence I needed to get to this place I am in today, only a few months later. Murakoze to all the people who shared, laughed, danced, hugged and rejoiced with me in this project! You are all with me now giving me courage to continue on. You are all truly some of the Bravest Souls I have ever met!)

In my life, the Ruin lead to Love , the pain to peace, the Kaos to Joy and Heartache to Inspiration. We need things to get dark before we can truly see the Light! I look at it all as one big picture, the focus being on the balance of my life as a whole.

In the moment it may feel dark, sad, and lonely but I have lived enough to know that when I  come out the other side I am a much wiser and stronger person. I embrace it all and at the same time let it all go. One moment at a time we are lead into into the next page of our life story, the whole while the pen is in our hands. How do you want your story to look?


(Santa Monica Pier, just days after returning from Rwanda. My future’s so bright I gotta wear shades!)

I have found my groove, my flow and the connection to my life is so strong that I feel pulled by it continually. As I walk down the street, I allow myself to truly feel where I want or need to go next. When I listen and follow through wether it makes sense to me or not, I go. The other day I decided to go with a new possibility that had been presented to me by a friend and went to inquire about a Government program called “Self-employment Program”. I had known about this for over a year and a half but it just never felt right.

When I returned to The Pas I began to see myself through a different lense, with the help of my friends, a business lense. I knew I wanted to start a non-profit and continue my work in Rwanda with Gilbert and the kids but I wasn’t sure how to do that. After  2 months, a few shifts at “Snakland” to help out my friend and myself financially,  a phone call from my friend Sarah, and a few long chats with my friend Paul. R, I suddenly saw things very differently. I needed to look after myself first and then think about starting a non-profit AND I did have what it takes to start my own business. The business of LOVE IN ACTION!


After a few weeks of building this idea in my mind, I went to the employment office in town and inquired about the program. I was caught of guard when asked to describe my business idea to the man behind the counter but gave it a shot anyway (how to describe what I do in my life and do it well enough that a Government employee is going to take it seriously?). I did it and he was sold enough by my 30 sec explanation to pass me through to the next step and from there it became clear that I had met the right person to help me through this next phase. Thank you Paul L.!

The work I have done in the past was easy to explain; lifeguard, Nursing, swim instructor, laborer, etc. as it all fit into the societal norms and made “sense”, meaning I didn’t have to explain what it was I did as the job was self explanatory. I lived in a very rational world, very male energy dominated paths of determining success; money and material possessions. In order to bring balance back into my life, I have spent nearly 4 years living in a very irrational world where the intuitive, the “feeling” has very much  become my norm. I am now at a place where I want to bring the two worlds into balance in my life.


(Ok, so I found a way to be myself even in the Rational world but really what I see when I look at this picture now is how much I used my sense of humor as a mask for my insecurities. I always felt like a “fraud” as a Nurse and did not take myself seriously most of  the time. Now I am able to bring back those parts of myself and have it be authentic. I have moved through the doubt and into a new confidence!)

I gave away my belongings, left my home, my life and my career so that I could Heal from the inside out.  I have healed to the point where  I want to bring back in the things I need to thrive in a way that is true to who I am now. To do that I need money because this is the reality I live in today. I do want my own space to call “home” as I know how important personal space is for me and what it provides for me. I also know that I will not do “work” that is not in some way meaningful to me, which can mean I work at “Snakland” to help my friend and ultimately myself in the short term but what I really mean is that I am not willing to push or force anything that does not naturally want to open up for me. I can find meaning in anything but what is it I am meant to be doing?


(Letting go of possessions I said I would NEVER part with, like my 1970 VW Beetle named “Inga Ja”, was one of the biggest tools to my healing. I realize now that I can have possessions that serve to provide me with the life I want to live and not as an escape from the life I am living. )

I have explored the path of Nursing many times throughout this process, each time the doors just do not open or if they do, only enough to take a tiny step forward and make an internal shift towards going back into it to support myself and my vision. What that tells me is that even though I have a really nice safety net if I really need it, in terms of money and security, there is something bigger awaiting me that wants me to focus on it and not fall into old patterns of fear. I feel that until I fully embrace this business of being myself I will not be able to fully step into Nursing, although things seem to be happening simultaneously.


If I look at my situation right now I have everything  I need to survive. I have food, clothing, a roof over my head and the love of all the people who support me in life. There is no reason to jump back into something just because it will give me money. What I need is to focus my time, energy and life on creating, even further, the life  I am meant to live. So that is what I am doing!


(After a visit to The Pas in 2012, just after leaving the Ashram I knew I needed to be here but the time was not right. I stayed for one month and then headed to California to study Water Release Therapy (www.waterreleasetherapy.com). I had no idea where this would lead me but I knew I needed to do it before I committed to staying anywhere long term. Little did I know I needed to Rwanda first!)

The gift of friendship that my best friend and I share is something so transformative,  unique and beautiful – it can hardly be described. We take turns being the rock and the water. We are creating a beautiful dance that supports us both. We both have nothing to fear when we have each other in our lives as we both understand or “get” each other in a way that facilitates change.


(On our way to the “Welcome Back Unicorn” Party that Carrie hosted for when I arrived!)

Together we have gone through many phases, trials and tribulations but through it all we have had an unshakable bond of sisterhood. This part of the journey is just a next logical step for both of us and makes perfect sense to us!!

So, after a few more meetings with the people at Employment Manitoba I feel more confident and supported than ever before. Something about sitting in a room with a man telling me that he believes in my vision allowed me to believe in myself at a new level. To be taken seriously by myself has been one of my life’s biggest challenges and I know that when I embody my beliefs I make others feel the same way about me. This was a very clear indicator of just how serious I have taken myself since March 7th, 2010.


(My home  and “studio” in Rwanda where I created Healing Art, Love Hoop Rwanda and began the journey into seriously being ME in action!)

This is what I have come to see myself as, a facilitator for change and this is what my business will be. I will continue to take the next steps into what is being offered to me with grace and gratitude. I know the Universe had guided me to the people I need to be with during this time and that all I need to do is allow myself to receive the gifts that await me!

Hari Om

All Washed Up


(Hendry’s Beach, Santa Barbara, CA –  4 days after returning from Rwanda!)

We are all the subjects in the experiment called “Life”.  Each one of us with our own version of “normal”. Not one single person can have the exact same view of “normal” as the other because we all interpret the world around us in a unique way based on our experiences. As I learn more about my “norms”, I embrace some of them but for the most part I work very hard to change them into choices. I don’t like being the victim of unconscious patterns that direct my speech, thoughts, actions and the path of my life. The work I do is all about being more conscious and aware of myself so I can make changes to live a more positive, satisfying and authentic life for me.

Each one of us has the right to live the life we want to live and we need not justify it to anyone. Even when I was living a life that created a person filled with anger, resentment, and fear, although unconscious at the time,  it was a consequence of my choices. Now I think about my actions on a level that tends to separate me from most people I meet and has separated me from my family.

I am willing to do this because this is the life that has allowed me to Heal. I do not do it to make others happy or even with others in mind. Any response to how I live my life is for the person doing the judging to learn from. Seeing as I have experienced everything from people thinking I am insane and telling me they hate me to people who love me so intensely it is almost unfathomable, I cannot be attached to either one of those extremes or anything in the middle. I get pulled out of my own life and into the energy of the other people when I choose to give up my power in that way.  I found a way to give myself meaning, fulfillment and purpose in life everyday and with this comes an intensely  powerful feeling of what it is  to truly live my life.


(California and “Hendry’s Beach” became my “Norm” when I was 27 years old. Coming from a remote Northern community, growing up places like this were but figments of my imagination. I have always been drawn to California and because of stepping into my fear it is now a place I call “home”!)

My thoughts, most of which I realized were not mine once I really broke myself down, were telling me that my life was not something I wanted to live or that I had to do it in a certain way in order to survive or even be happy. When we live unconsciously, we are but a consequence of  many layers of “brainwashing” from a variety of sources that mainstream society is bombarded with on a constant basis. From food choices to sexuality; Education, radio, TV, movies, advertising, internet, family, friends, careers, money, government – you name it, there is a message behind all of it that seeks to keep us under control.  In my life, some of it well intentioned, some of it seemingly positive but underneath it all lies control. Even deeper underneath there is a thick layer of Fear that drives it all (if we let it!)


(What is there to be afraid of in my life when this sweet boy, Mohammed, has no food in his stomach and no mattress to sleep on every night! Survival is the deepest root of Fear and even though he is barely surviving, he demonstrated a spark for life that captivated me. I am sponsoring him to attend school and I am committed to take him as far as he wants to go, even though I have no “Job” or steady income right now, I have a deep knowing and trust that I am more than capable of providing this gift to him. He in-turn motivates me to move through my Fear and be my most authentic Self! Urakoze Cane Mohammed.

Oh, and that sweet little man behind him with his finger  pointing at Mohammed is “Issa”! He received a mattress and a fluffy blanket, for his family of 6, from the work we did together to raise money by Dancing!)

We are all subject to these influences in some way, at some time in our lives. Once I started to understand my mind and see how it was running all the time, like a freshly wound time piece without any control from myself, I realized that I was a simply acting as a puppet and handing over the control of my life. Something that was easily manipulated to fit into a system, a system that I did not want to fit into. I don’t really feel any of us fit into this system as it is so far removed from what is natural to humans beings. Since coming back to The Pas, I relate to the Aboriginal culture in a very different way and it was Africa that helped me see this culture through new eyes. Again, stepping boldly into the face of fear allowed for growth that changed the way I viewed the world around me.


(I have walked this path, which has changed now into an actual path and is no longer just a trail through the bush, many times before. It is the path I took to walk to Junior High, High School, and College! Needless to say I have seen this path many times but this time around I have a deeper appreciation for how amazing it is that I was/am so surrounded my Nature in my life.)

Everyone doing the same, all thinking and acting alike, even looking alike so that we all feel safe and comfortable in the world around us, which speaks to an innate survival instinct that we all have, can hold us back from living our lives authentically.  I feel that any thought can be put into someone’s head if done repeatedly and from a variety of angles. This leads to unconscious behaviors that then draw us further and further away from our true selves. If we are all lost together then at least we can feel safe in that fear. To be one of the few who chooses to go against the grain, against mainstream and go with the flow of their own life is a very challenging road to choose. When I am immersed in a place where I feel I am greatly outnumbered it is even more challenging. Now here I am again, in my hometown surrounded by the same people and energy I had growing up, yet I am able to see it as a gift. What I see and what I know I was drawn here for is the potential that lies within this community for change both within myself and those around me.


(Rwandan people are deeply connected to the earth, which is demonstrated in their language, body movements, gestures, dance, art, communication, spirit and daily lives. It was through this that I was able to understand the Aboriginal culture that I grew up surrounded by in a new way. I returned with a deep appreciation for both cultures.)

Who am I to waltz into a community and say that it needs to change or that this is right or wrong? I am not doing that. I am simply noticing the habits, the patterns, the energy and how it feels to me. How do I want to feel while I live here and how can I create a space for myself within this community that feels positive for me? How do I make it a healthy place for me to live?  For me it means consciously connecting to the culture and embracing all that it has to teach me, along with taking whatever next steps are presented to me while I am here. This is a practice that comes with me whenever I travel and is a very valuable tool to helping me be well in any setting.

I practice being conscious and aware of my thoughts, actions, speech, body and mind constantly so that I can make choices that are authentic to who I am at my core. I see the old patterns play out very clearly, especially now that I am back in my hometown where I was in many ways a completely different version of myself. Its not a coincidence that people that live together look alike, talk and sound alike, walk alike and relate to each other in a way that they are all familiar with. This is the power of community influence and it can be used to make positive change. I miss my community in California, The Kootenays and Rwanda very much but feel extremely grateful for  having created them in my life. Knowing I have them to go when I need the kind of support they offer is such a blessing. I also see that there is a richness to my childhood home that I have long taken for granted. I am here to  make peace with that within myself.


(My best friend and I, age 13, were both born and raised in The Pas. I moved around until I was 11 years old, then returned. We both had a challenging time as teenagers and left before the age 20. Somehow we are now both back here, living together, supporting each other and healing what needs to be healed – together.)

By striving to create a space that feels positive for myself, I can also create an environment that is open to others who are drawn to feel that same energy. This is not about implanting another form of brainwashing or manipulating anyone, it is about offering myself as an example of change and anyone who wants to join in can and will. I am the holder of the space. I hold the space within myself and it radiates out in my work, my life, my speech and my actions. This is how I attract those who want to learn more about how to hold that same kind of space within themselves.

Even my time at the Ashram can be seen as a form of brainwashing except there is one HUGE difference, Choice. It was like I was handed the strings to the puppet called My Life. I was never told anything, no question answered only asked more questions. I was given control and that was very unsettling. Since when do I get to make my own rules? Can I really say what I feel and ask for what I need? When I do or say something and I clearly hear a tone or feel an energy that is not authentic to who I am, I  can change it? I was given back my power by being given the space to think autonomously.


(During my time at the Yasodhara Ashram I gained 35 lbs, found my Spirit and my Will to live, let go of  emotional baggage that was causing me physical pain, and truly began to Heal myself! It was both my refuge and my launching pad!)

In many ways it was the ultimate “Brain Wash”, I literally cleansed my mind from the negative thoughts that held me in unhappiness and pain. I felt “washed” and like a clean slate coming back into the world. Everything seemed so harsh, so rude, so sexual and people even looked like robots to me at times. I got to see the world from the eyes of a new born and now am learning to keep out the things I do not want to expose myself to and consciously allow only what I do want into my life. No more wasting energy on things that do not feed me.


(On my way to meet with Bunny from the Self-employment program that I am hoping to be accepted to!)

Knowing full well that the only person or thing I can change is myself, I step into this next phase with a confidence and strength that comes from experience and knowing what works for me. My life, My way, My Self!

Fate vs Karma

C.G. Jung — ‘Until you make the unconscious conscious, it will direct your life and you will call it fate.’


Am I destined to repeat the same cycles over and over again in love?  Am I meant to be alone? Am I meant to be in one, life long committed relationship with a man? My answer is “NO!”

I am in relationship with everyone who crosses my path; young, old, male, female, dog, cat, tree. I am in relationship with nature. I am in relationship with my Self. Everything gives and everything takes in order to achieve balance. My life is a part of the balancing act of the whole world combined. I am doing my part in the relationship to create a more beautiful space for me to live in, the world in my mind is very different than the one I lived in externally.


My patterns in romantic love come from a variety of sources and some of them, I believe, came with me from past lives because I believe in Karma. These are the lessons I was meant to work with in this lifetime and they are what bring me closer to enlightenment or oneness and ultimately freedom! This gives me a positive outlook on my life no matter what comes to me because I see it as a gift. A gift that will lead me towards understanding myself and facilitates change.

So my patterns with male energy are obviously Karmic as they are very deep and have  been my most painful lessons, this last one no exception. But one thing, one very big thing, has changed – I am aware of myself playing them out as they happen and can make changes in the moment. I have learned to listen to my thoughts and see my actions before I act on them by practicing control of my energy, emotions and self.

Awareness does not mean or even imply perfection, almost the opposite in my view. To be aware means that I am watching for my imperfections and flagging them. If they are something that I want to change, I begin to consciously watch for them with the intent to make a different choice. Not every imperfection needs to be changed but the ones that cause me repeated pain are the ones I focus on.

Photo 215

(These finger glasses help me to focus on my unconscious behaviors…..or this is just a funny photo!!)

Even with years of practice, I still play out unconscious behaviors, which when they become conscious I cannot help but think – how they heck did I let that happen – AGAIN?? Thank goodness for friends that are wiling to hold me to my truth (Kristen, Carrie, Catherine) and not judge me! All the work that I have done in this area including intensely practicing celibacy for 4 years has given me room for much growth but also reveals to me how deeply these patterns are ingrained.


(Amanda: I think I found Mr.Right!!!! What do you girls think??? Carrie: Ummmmm, that’s a blow up doll, he’s not real Amanda!! Kristen: “We’ll he’s got a mustache but I thought you didn’t like mustaches? Catherine: “What??????????”)

Celibacy for me is a dynamic experiment in which I engage in my sexual energy in various ways to give myself real life experience of who I am and make changes to facilitate who I want to be. I am currently teaching myself to be friends with men, to respect them and see them as real people. As I engage with willing participants in the experiment I learn about the patterns, I like to call them worm holes or rabbit holes that my mind loves to drag me down), and watch how my mind can create something out of nothing. This is the power of the imagination (Third Chakra) and it is also something that can be redirected towards positive, healthy outlets. I spent most of my time in relationship unconsciously and was always unhappy on some level because my partner was never going to live up to the person my imagination had created  in my mind.


(My friend Brian helping me learn about being in a loving, kind, caring friendship with a man and what an amazing young man you are! Gratitude for you!)

Once I learned, through experience, that the energy which drew me to that person was created within me by my Karma, it flipped everything on its head. I began to question the idea of Soul Mates, Marriage, Purpose, and Love to the point of ….well…… Truth (for me anyway!).  If the energy that drew me to someone who I thought I was supposed to marry and be with forever  is now gone, as well as his physical presence, then wouldn’t that mean I was not living my life according to “the plan”? Would that not mean I would be very unhappy now in life? The way that the energy simply disappears after time leads me to believe that I have healed the part of me that was drawn to this person.



Karmically, I was now free of that burden and the lesson had been learned. Fate is then nothing but an unconscious pull towards old wounds of lessons unlearned in the past and we can choose to stay in this unconscious place OR we can choose to see it, learn, and grow.  This may mean letting go of the relationship and the idea of Forever with that person and it may shatter our facade of our safe and secure lives, at least in our minds. If we hold tightly to the security of the idea of Soul Mate then we may be keeping ourselves in an old pattern that serves to create more pain.

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(Check out the size of that “Rock” on my finger! It was big enough even to fool me, the biggest on non-believers in this type of demonstration of Love.)

He was not my “one and only” or  my “Soul Mate”, none of them were, at least not in the way most people use those terms. I feel everyone who crosses my path in this life is a Soul Mate as they are here to teach me something. Imagine all the souls out there in the Universe, floating around waiting to be reborn,  and of all of those the ones who are on this plane right now are all meant to be here so we can learn from each other. Some come into my life in much more intense ways and I feel that we have lived together in different lives in the past. Others may be new to me energetically and as I do the work to heal my soul I will be met with a more and more enlightened earth in which I live.


I know, Im getting a bit “spacey” here but is it possible that when we do the work in one life we can come back to another life (or “Earth”) that is on a new level and eventually we reach a place called Nirvana, Ananda (Bliss), Heaven, Shangri-la? Are those places that can exist in a human form or are they reserved for our Souls only? Who knows, I sure don’t but I can go there in my mind and if that is what gives me Joy and gets me through this life then so be it!! The mind is a powerful tool and each one of us can choose to live in whatever  reality we desire!

To me, Sexual energy is Creative energy. When I  stopped using it soley for sex (and all that comes with that ie: clothing, self-worth, language, etc.) I saw just how much of my time and energy was consumed by this unconscious pull towards mating, relationship, security, and reproduction. As I learn to channel it into things that I want in my life, I see how powerful it is! It is creative energy that created my life, it literally created me and is the reason I am alive. It also created a lot of pain. Now I use it for expression and living life authentically. The redirecting and control I now have over my creative energy (First and Second Chakra) has given me an amazing last 2 years of my life and especially these last 12 months.


(Self-expression through my outward image became a tool for creativity and a vehicle for change! This is costume making day for Thrill The World Kigali and it was an amazing creative project for all of us!)

At the Ashram, I stripped away everything that I thought was sexual in nature, ie: clothes, my hair, make up, self care, speech, eye contact, relationships, and focused very firmly on awareness around the subtle ways in which my patterns still managed to impact my life. I was lucky enough to be in a community that wanted to help me with whatever area I was choosing to work with. I had a lot of people to offer me insight into what I was not able to see for myself.

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Situations were presented to me in order to call on my strength and many, many challenges in which to find my voice and see myself more clearly. I had a wonderful mentor who gave me support in a way that I can only explain as a gift from God. Firm, commanding, no nonsense kind of support that said to me, “ok, you say you want to change well this is what I see.” Not many people can give this kind of support in such a loving way and not many people can handle this kind of honesty but when we really want to change the most important ingredient is Truth, especially the truths that we cannot see or choose not to see for ourselves.

I  have allowed men into my life who treated me the way I felt I deserved to be treated.  Because of the way I was raised, where I was raised, the way I was taught to see my role as a woman, societal pressures, media, and of course my Karma were all factors in these pairings. Now, here is where there is a thin line between blame and acceptance of facts. To acknowledge that I chose this life and everything in it, from a Karmic point of view, takes the blame away for me as I believe it was my choice to have this exact experience so I could learn these lessons. I also believe that the lessons get more and more harsh if they have not been dealt with and the more times I take the same path, the more severe the consequences. So this is one area in which I know I brought a lot of Karmic baggage but I am doing the work this time for sure and I see how much growing I have done in a relatively short period of time. The men that come into and stayed in my life in the last 4 years are different because I am different. Especially the men I met in Rwanda, Gilbert, Justin and all the young men dancers. They have transformed me and healed me!


(Justin Bisengimana, my brother, my friend, my mentor and my healer! Ndagukunda Cane Cane!)


(Gilbert Rutaremara, my inshuti, my creative partner, co-creator of my vision, my inspiration! We are Love In Action!)

I believe that all of my work up to this point was to heal me in all areas of my life. Everything is intermingled within our minds and lives, there is no way this issue of sexuality has not impacted every area, every choice, every word, every thought. Im working with some very powerful energy and as I learn to become friends with it, which literally means becoming friends with myself, I see the beauty that it holds when it is used consciously.