“In order for an authentic connection to happen, we have to allow ourselves to be seen – really seen.” -Brené Brown

Being vulnerable requires bravery-
Willingness to remove the mask and step out in the light – bare, naked, exposed.

Is it possible to do something without worrying about the outcome?

Allowing whatever will happen to simply happen.
Come as you are.

I cringe, hearing my own voice and reading something I’ve written.

Years ago, I took a six-week film acting course in Houston. We would act out various scenes from beloved classic films like A Few Good Men (“You can’t handle the truth!”)

Our instructor would film our workshops and burn them onto DVDs for us.
I was too much of a coward ever to view mine back.

I remember once in class, our instructor replaying a scene I had just reenacted, and he stated, “The camera really loves you!” and everyone in class agreed.

It still didn’t compel me to watch my film, nor pursue film acting seriously. I was always afraid that I wasn’t good enough.

The Bully takes nearly every opportunity to beat me up.

When did the Bully begin to show up on my life?

It’s difficult to pinpoint an exact moment or event.

Only when I left the States four years ago and embarked on life alone, away from my family and the social circle I was so used to, did I begin to assess myself. And by assessing myself, I mean coming to terms with why I made particular choices and the subsequent feelings of inadequacy.

I did everything one is supposed to in life, or so I thought. I was a superstar straight-A student. I was always the star athlete. I never got in trouble, whether at home, school, or with the law. I got my first job at 17 and started saving my own money.

I got a scholarship and attended a local college. I studied Business Administration because it would ensure a secure job after graduation. I graduated Cum Laude. I secured a position in my field of study. I had friends and likes and shares on Facebook and other social media. I had health and fitness, a strict gym regimen. I did “everything right.”

But, despite the constant striving and doing, and achieving and being, and working, and doing, repeat repeat repeat, I still cannot shake this feeling of emptiness inside. That who I am is not really who I am. As though my default setting is feeling insecure, sad, and miserable.

To those who interact with me, or think they know me, I may come across as a positive, happy person who has it all together. I smile wide and try to bring an air of joviality into most social situations.

I find solace in acting quirky and humorous in social situations and being able to lighten the mood, especially if things get tense.

How can such a seemingly happy person then feel the complete opposite on the inside? It’s almost as though I live a secret double life. The young, energetic young professional who is so creative and lively at work becomes a worried, shy, and insecure girl behind closed doors, always worrying if I’ll ever be good enough.

It then occurred to me that these feelings a more deep-seated – not merely based on my beliefs that I did something wrong in life or made poor choices, especially when all signs show that I really didn’t make any terrible life mistakes.

A Discovery

We learn a lot, if not everything, about our self-worth from our caregivers – namely, our parents. It’s a parent’s job to instill feelings of unconditional love and worthiness within their children.

Considering my own self-image is critically poor, I have decided to explore the roots of this negative outlook.

I mentioned earlier how I find myself very pleasant and outgoing to the outside world. Many people (non-family) tell me I have a lovely smile and beautiful teeth. As I write this, I am overcome by a repressed memory from my early childhood.

I must have been around 5/6 years old, and my mom was going through some photographs she had recently picked up from printing (this was the 90’s, way before digital cameras). As she went through the images, she sighed in disappointment at my face in the picture. “Why do you smile like that?” I remember her asking. As a small, innocent child who had recently lost my first baby teeth, I immediately felt shame and embarrassment. From then on, I began smiling without showing my teeth. Subsequently, I developed an almost self-loathing of myself and my appearance.

Now, looking back at family albums and seeing childhood photos of myself where I give a sheepish grin rather than a happy-go-lucky smile, I feel anger and sadness. How could a parent plant such a self-destructive seed in their own child’s head, heart, and psyche?

Of course, this memory is only a snippet of a long series of down-talking, confusion, and lack-of-empathy I received as a child and continue to receive from my parents.

My aim isn’t to bash them in any way. They both provided my brother and me with a comfortable life. We always had food to eat, clothes to wear, vacations, etc. However, as I grow older (and begin to grow comfortable with the idea of me becoming a mother one day ), I can’t help but realize how my parents’ (especially my mother’s) lack of empathy and understanding have shaped me into an insecure person.

My entire childhood, I was yearning for unconditional love and validation from my parents. The perfect angelic behavior at school, coupled with my need to make excellent grades and be the best student, were all attempts to gain positive recognition from them.

For me, I suppose the first step in opening up and being vulnerable is to accept that I didn’t receive nor receive the type of unconditional love that I need or want from my parents. Experience has shown time and time again how I get let down by the expectations that “this time they will be nicer,” “this time they will understand me,” “this time, they won’t judge me.”

Out of curiosity, am I ready to begin the work of undoing the negative self-talk stemming from my childhood? Am I prepared to relearn how to think and speak about myself? It is high time that I embrace vulnerability and open up to my authentic self.

The History of Halloween

One of the most beloved holidays of the year, Halloween is usually a festive time enjoyed by millions around the globe complete with fun costumes, spooky tales, and the consumption of copious amounts of candy. However, the true origins of this tradition remain a mystery to most.

Halloween has its roots in Celtic tradition dating back over two thousand years to the festival known as Samhain. The people of ancient Celtic Ireland believed that the veil between the living world and the spirit world was thinnest during this time of year, thus allowing easier contact between the living and the dead. Deceased loved ones and ancestors were invited to return to the home to visit with living family members while malevolent spirits were warded off. Many believed that by wearing disguises, costumes, and masks, unwanted/harmful spirits were kept at bay. This is how the tradition of dressing up for Halloween has remained with us throughout the ages. Granted, I doubt an evil spirit would be warded off by someone dressed up as a sexy cat or Baywatch lifeguard.

In pagan tradition, Samhain marked the end of the Celtic year and the beginning of the new one, similar to New Year’s Eve. As explained by

The perceptible, and apparent, decline in the strength of the sun at this time of year was a source of anxiety for early man and the lighting of the Winter Fires here symbolised mans attempt to assist the sun on its journey across the skies. Fire is the earthly counterpart of the sun and is a powerful and appropriate symbol to express man’s helplessness in the face of the overwhelming sense of the decay of nature as the winter sets in.

Now the sun has descended into the realm of the underworld, the forces of the underworld were in the ascendency. The lord of the underworld, unfettered from the control of the sun, now walked the earth and with him travelled all those other creatures from the abode of the dead. Ghosts, fairies and a host of other non-descript creatures went with him. The Lord of the Dead in Celtic mythology can be identified as Donn.

The Psychic Teachers discuss The Thinning of the Veil in this week’s podcast. Deb, a practicing pagan, outlines her traditions for this holiday, including hosting a silent supper (“dumb supper”-where “dumb” refers to being silent) in which food is served to loved ones in the spirit world. This tradition is believed to honor those who have crossed over.

Do you notice the thinning of the veil during this time of year?

Five Baby Goats

By now it should come as no surprise that I frequently have very vivid and intense dreams. It’s almost as though I live in two different worlds: the “normal” world when I’m awake and a fun, animated dream world when I sleep. Because of this, I very much look forward to sleeping as I know I’m about to enter a new existential dimension.

Last night I had a very curious dream steeped in symbolism. I dreamt that I was boarding onto a boat, similar to the one used for casual riverboat tours. Accompanying me on my voyage were five baby goats (three female and two male, I believe). They were small, fragile, and delicate. I carried them in crates that looked almost like vintage cat carriers. I boarded the boat and was directed to sit in a section away from all the other passengers. There I sat with just myself and my five baby goats who simply slept in their crates. Very bizarre. I remember feeling as though I had to care for and protect them.

Being the inquisitive, spiritual-seeker that I am, I decided to look into the meaning behind the key symbols from that dream.


The setting of a dream is always important. Luckily, this dream was pretty straightforward as I specifically remember boarding onto a boat. Symbolically, a boat represents calling upon one’s intuition when navigating forward in life. Mainly, seeing a boat will bring about the question, “Where am I going?” I’m sure I’m not the only one dealing with thoughts, fears, and hopes for the future. As this being a main symbol in my dream, perhaps my subconscious is evoking my fears surrounding my future. Is this really the path I should be on? 


Besides being incredibly adorable, characteristically rambunctious, and overall goofy, goats are a favorite farmhouse animal because of their uncomplicated nature around other animals. Goats were one of the first animals to be domesticated over 10,000 years ago and have adapted to being in close company of humans. While social in nature, goats tend to graze alone. Symbolically, the goat represents a sense of independence. Coming across a goat in real life or the in a dream calls for self-reflection and learning to gain strength from one’s own abilities. Goat symbology teaches us that often the greatest lessons learned through self-discovery are learned alone. The main symbolic meanings associated with the goat totem are as follows:

  • Faith
  • Peace
  • Respect
  • Balance
  • Dignity
  • Exploration
  • Independence

In Shamanic belief, the sure-footedness exhibited by goats reminds us to be confident in ourselves as we strive to new heights. I couldn’t, however, find exact information on the symbolism of baby goats. This is left up for me to interpret. Perhaps, the baby goats represent my budding sense of independence as I move forward with freelance writing and building up this blog. I have chosen (for the time, and hopefully, indefinitely) to pursue a creative path which will result in self employment and freedom from a standard 9 to 5 career and cubicle lifestyle.

The number 5

If numerology teaches us anything, it’s that there is metaphysical power within numbers. Following my brief research, I have found that the number five is representative of several things:

  • 5 is known as a number of balance
  • According to, five “is the most dynamic and energetic of all the single-digit numbers,” further noting, “The 5 is extremely independent in mind and soul. She is an adventurer and a risk-taker who has a hard time staying in one place, in one job, in one house or in one relationship.”

Talk about synchronicity! Not only does the goat symbolize freedom and independence, but the number 5 emphasizes this notion.

As I move further away from a conventional lifestyle (i.e. embracing spirituality) and learn to embrace my interests and gifts, I am beginning to develop a stronger sense of identity. Understandably, truly accepting who I am involves a journey towards independence- avoiding the fear of what other’s may think and being self-assured in my own path and uniqueness.

Here’s to springing forward with confidence and fearlessness.



*Sees “11:11” on the clock

“Make a wish!”

Where does this superstition come from? Does the number sequence 1111 really hold any spiritual or metaphysical significance?

As the Paulo Coelho taught us in his work The Alchemist, our everyday life is full of omens-signs from the Universe or higher power. As many spiritual gurus and freethinkers believe, numbers hold strong significance and meaning.

To begin this discussion, one must look at the big picture. It is understood that everything in life is made up of energy, nitty-gritty atoms (the building blocks of everything). From our bodies to the water we drink, the food we eat, and everything around us, energy is everywhere. The key element to realize, however, is that energy operates at various frequencies or vibrations.

Most of us cannot see angels, spirits, and other beings from “behind the veil” because the vibrational energy of these beings is much higher than ours. This is why when someone begins a path toward spiritual awakening and enlightenment, the phrase “raising your vibrations” is a common expression. By tuning in to one’s inner voice either through meditation or chakra work (such as Reiki), or participating in spiritual practices such as crystal collecting, yoga, card reading, just to name a few, the veil between the physical world and the ethereal world becomes thinner.

Which brings me back to omens. It is said that seeing certain numbers or objects (let’s say, a feather) fairly often shows that the Universe is trying to communicate with you. Specifically, the number sequence 1111, as with other repetitive number sequences, signifies a message from your guardian angels. Numerology teaches us that numbers hold vibrational energy. Renowned angel therapist Doreen Virtue explains that the number sequence 1111 holds the highest frequency and demonstrates a clear path to our angelic team.

This Willow Soul article also outlines 5 reasons why 11:11 keeps popping up in your life. For me, I routinely notice the time 11:11 every morning and every night. Each time I see it, I sense the excitement and connection with higher energy outside of myself. I’m grateful for the reminder that I am on a path towards spiritual awakening (as I am actively writing and maintaining a metaphysical blog). This numerical occurrence emphasizes that I am on the right path and I must stay true to my interests (no matter how bizarre or nonconforming they may be).

Even if you are not a firm believer in angels or fru-fru spiritual things (maybe one day you will be!), just making a wish at 11:11 is a great way to connect with the present moment, literally. Every superstitious ritual, including making a wish at a certain time, is steeped in spiritual importance. Take note of the next time you see the time 11:11 or even a sequence of repeating numbers pop up. Perhaps you will begin to tune in to the messages that the Universe is trying to communicate.

Feeling “at home”

I live in North Cork.

For anyone familiar with Cork City, saying that you reside in the “north side” comes with an air of privilege and prestige. Not because it’s a posh area, rather, the working-class neighborhoods on the north side are known to be gritty and rough. 1960’s era row homes dot the hilly landscape. Tough guys in matching tracksuits march by with leashed Jack Russells in one hand and intimidating hurling sticks in the other. The association with the north side is that you are tenacious and resilient. My neighbors walk along the gritty sidewalks with pride and confidence. Despite economic hardships and lack of infrastructural development, I never shy away from telling others about my residence when I get the FAQ, “whereabouts do ya live?”

The house in which my boyfriend and I currently reside is a palace by Irish living standards. Our two bedroom home, complete with a charming gas fireplace and spacious back garden, sits atop a steep hill. Though scaling this hill can be a bit physically challenging, the views into the city center are unparalleled. Sometimes, I admire the view from our bedroom window and imagine myself to be the “Princess of the North Side.” All I need is a bedazzled tiara to accompany a matching Adidas tracksuit.

I have officially lived in Ireland for one year now. I have just recently begun to reflect on all that has transpired over the course of this year. I completed a 20,000 word Masters thesis, joined a volleyball team, developed a loving relationship with a German man (whom I met my second week in the country), and moved into a beautiful home.

Home. This concept has jumped around in my mind every since I moved away from Texas. I had lived in the Houston-area for the majority of my life. Although I had been fortunate enough to travel to many places in the world, I had never allowed myself to commit to moving abroad. When I arrived in Ireland on September 1, 2016, I was determined to make this new country my home. Discovering the lovely rental house on the north side hilltop, was an opportunity my boyfriend and I could not pass up, especially considering the housing shortage impacting most Irish cities.

My boyfriend and I are not native to Ireland. He is from Bavaria, and I’m from the States. Understandably, sometimes we both experience sadness and homesickness. With our house, however, we are determined to create and sustain a sense of belonging and contentment. Home is not about perfection. Placing unfair expectations into what makes you feel “at home” will only perpetuate feelings of unease and discomfort.

We spend a lot of time in our home. We cook dinners together every night. We hang our laundry out to dry on the line in the back garden. We planted flowers in decorative flower pots. We enjoy cool evenings on our patio, listening to the birds around us, watching the sky’s hues shift, blend, and transition as the sun sets. When it’s raining (which happens quite often), we snuggle up in our cozy den. A home is about the moments you enjoy.

How do you feel about your home? What do you do to make the most out of your living situation?

Hurricane Harvey

My hometown of Houston has been completely devastated by the latest hurricane to hit the Gulf Coast. The heartbreaking images of all the many families who have lost their homes and all their possessions, familiar landmarks under feet of flood water, stranded animals searching desperately for higher ground all fill me with sadness and hopelessness.

The Bayou City is no stranger to natural phenomena, from droughts, annual flooding from heaven season thunderstorms, hot summer days, and even mass amounts of pesky mosquitos, Houstonians are a tough and resilient group of people. We are accustomed to dealing with tropical storms and hurricanes. We revel in how we were able to bounce back after Rita and Ike. This time, things went differently. Harvey exceeded our worst fears.

Nature can be terrifyingly destructive.

The development of this storm from a tropical storm to Category 4 hurricane was an eery foreshadowing of the damage Harvey was sure to inflict. Watching from the safety of my Irish home, the sheer size of the storm as it approached the Texas coast terrified me.

The name “Harvey” holds significant meaning. Derived from the French name Herve, Harvey means “battle worthy” or “battle warrior.” Though one would commonly picture a man with the name to be a laid-back, Hawaiian shirt clad, middle-aged dude you’d like to share a beer and a chat with, Hurricane Harvey lived up to the combative nature of the moniker. The storm battled the Texas coastline, leaving cities devastated in his wake.

Symbolically, natural disasters do carry a lot of metaphysical meaning. As hurricanes are essentially a cyclone of low-pressure and high speed winds, the winds reflect uncontrollable forces, a sense of unpredictability and instability. Because of the utter power, size, unpredictability, and ability to inflict mass destruction, hurricanes remind us of the unmatched power of nature. Nature can seem cruel and senseless. Traumatic natural disasters never take into account the toll on human life, the pain left in the aftermath.

Besides the wind, Harvey brought an incomparable amount of rainfall. The rain levels Houston experienced was record-breaking. For a large, heavily populated urban area, surrounded by bayous and ravines, flooding was imminent. This storm has literally created havoc, environmental destruction. The flood waters still remain, having transformed city streets into urban canal-like waterways. Metaphysically, water represents the flow of the collective mind – the collective unconscious. Seems poignant that one of the country’s largest metropolitan areas would suffer such terrible flooding during such a tumultuous social and political time. The battle of political ideologies and the subsequent social battles of race, sexual-orientation, gender, and so on have been plaguing the nation for many months now.

For me, the arrival of this disaster during such a contentious political time symbolizes the unchecked feelings, emotions, hatred which had accumulated and had to be released- even in such a horrific way. Harvey dumping trillions of gallons of rain water metaphysically signify the pain the American people have been carrying within. As water is used for baptismal ceremonies, the heavy rain seems to have been a means of washing away the dark, toxic energy that the American people have been subject to given the recent combative political climate.

{Human}Nature can be astonishingly beautiful.

Amid the damage, destruction, and heartbreak left in Harvey’s aftermath, scenes of unparalleled kindness and goodwill reflect the true human spirit of Houston. Everyone has answered the call to help their neighbors, to lend a helping hand, to volunteer, to donate. The way everyone has come together is remarkable. The true acts of kindness and heroism displayed truly showcase the unbreakable connection Houstonians share for each other.

The positive message to learn from this event is that the human spirit can overcome. We can find hope in even the most dire situations. It’s heartwarming to know that the recent headlines are those of people helping one another, not deranged individuals spouting their hateful rhetoric trying to divide us.

I am proud to call Houston my hometown. I am grateful for the love and support Houstonians have shown throughout this trying time. I have faith that everyone will come together and work towards a brighter, compassionate future.

Little fawn

Last night I had the most vivid dream. I dreamt I was cradling a little baby fawn in my arms. I was a protector, keeping it secure and safe. I kept it warm and stroked its delicate fur. I awoke feeling calm and at ease. There had to be a message associated with this fragile, yet strikingly beautiful animal.

Some careful web sleuthing led me to interesting details about baby deer symbolism. According to an interpretation by spiritual professional and shaman Quornesha S., the fawn deer:


“appears in our lives as a message that you will find that the incessant worries you have today will not be as prevalent tomorrow. It is a message that there is something that has come to an end in your life. In regards to worries or struggles, in ones’ life.

Your thought processes are maturing at this time and are elevating. A chapter has concluded and a new one is to take its place. Be consistent with the directions of your life and your life’s work.

It is up to you to believe in the birth of your own ideas, as only you know how they are going to work out for the long term or imminent future.”


How incredibly opportune to receive the message of the fawn on the eve of beginning my blog! How often I have worried that my blog wouldn’t be successful, effectively doubting my abilities and my instincts. Too frequently, we deny our chance to begin down a path which would truly fulfill us as we allow anxiety, toxic beliefs of inferiority, or simply the fear of failing stand in our way.

As I had gently nurtured the fawn in my dreams, I am inspired by a sense of courage and self-assurance to nurture blckmeta.

What self-doubting beliefs or unfair judgements are standing in the way from achieving your goals? Remember that the dreams and desires you feel within you are as delicate as a fawn in the wood. Support yourself, believe in your abilities, and guard your ideas from your own self-toxifying disbelief. Take a chance and just do it.