March 17, 2020 at 1:00 PM
by Jen Hewson

I Choose to Listen

On my spiritual journey I've had to accept the choices I've made. Each one has sculpted and carved out the person I am today, but it didn't always feel this way. I certainly have made a lot of reckless choices in my life, and like it or not, I've had to live with the consequences of each one, but also the possibilities and gifts that each presented.

I suppose the first choice I made as a child, at least consciously, is when I chose to abandon myself at around 11 or 12 years old. I left behind that little girl, full of love and wonderment. At the time I was protecting myself, but little did I know that I would spend half a lifetime looking for her and helping her to make her way home.

I recall the choice I made to leave home at 15 years old. The scars had built up so thick around my heart that my own soul suffocated. I left behind all my material possessions (not sure what that was at 15) but it fit in an old army bag and I moved in with a woman named Wendy. At this point in my life I had been told by some family members, and teachers that I probably wouldn't get very far in life. This helped to solidify the beliefs I already held about myself. I chose to believe that I was worthless, flawed and unworthy of love. I was working and had left school and I made a snap decision one day to leave everything behind and get on a bus to go to Alberta and find my father.

I remember calling my Grandfather, who remains one of the dearest living people in my life, and he was so calm about it all. He told me he would get a hold of my mom and plan to come gather my things from where I had been staying. He carries so much wisdom and love. The choice to go West was an opportunity to escape what I had experienced in my life. I remember the trip across Canada vividly. I remember the excitement and exhilaration I had at having made such a spontaneous choice to leave and go on an adventure with nothing really, but the clothes on my back. On the Greyhound bus I met a rowdy, but caring bunch of biker folks on their way to Vancouver. They took such great care of me, like I was one of their own, making sure I had food and that no one messed with me. I know I have had divine intervention in my life, even considering the places, people, chances and choices I have made. Getting off the bus, I set out for an adventure, to find my father. (Will come back to this in Betrayal Part II)

When my first love broke my heart and had betrayed me, I made a choice to leave college and move to England with a boy I barely knew, and that I had met at a club in Burlington. His name was Ian. His family invited me into their home, and I spent the next six months living a fairy tale, hiking the Brecon Beacon mountains and leaving a life I'd rather not speak of behind. This choice opened so many doors in my mind to the possibilities that existed outside of my small rural community that I had always lived in. When I moved back, I made the decision to move downtown, in Canada’s largest city, Toronto, and made so many choices that forever changed the trajectory of my life. It was the 90’s. I played with psychedelic drugs, high rollers, lowlifes, hung with the coolest kids and supported myself penny to penny, blindly through each day and into the night, killing myself softly and gently with every step. I was reckless with my body, and the gifts it had given me, and I poisoned my mind with every drink and every pill I swallowed. But I felt free.

I chose to leave Toronto nearly ten years later, as the cities decaying landscape really started to affect me emotionally and I needed a new landscape to recover from a double betrayal; done by the hands of more people that claimed to love me.

Upon my return, like always, I found myself in the arms of another man, that I chose without checking his soul credentials, to see if he deserved me and all my gifts. For so long I gave myself away to others so frivolously. We do this when we do not love ourselves; Never questioning who they are, but just surrendering for the love of someone to accept and hold us. Up until that point he was the greatest man I had ever met. He was loyal, strong and hardworking, but he too betrayed me, for the mighty dollar, although that choice I made, brought me two beautiful gifts; my children.

So, you see, in every choice there is a consequence. There is always a life lesson in every situation, even when we can't see it in the moment. Learning to pause and think before I choose, is a gift that only came to me recently. It has taken a lifetime of learning and growing, failing and overcoming, to see that in choices, we all have free will. There are so many choices we can make, and when we pause and ask our higher selves’ advice, we will have the answer(s). I encourage each of you to make choice(s) only after taking a pause and asking for insight. Ask yourself before bed or in a quiet moment of meditation, and you will receive the insight you need. You already have the answers, you must make the choice to pause and listen.