On a sunny day at The Esalen Institute, I read the sign: “Wilderness Area. Enter at Your Own Risk” and risked it. I hiked into the canyon near a beautiful waterfall that a friend had described to me as one of the most powerful places on the land. I could feel the healing energy. It was there that I married myself.
Why did I marry myself?
It started with an unusual dream.
In my dream, it was the final episode of Sex and the City. But instead of Carrie marrying Mr. Big., something else happened. There was a wedding where each character married themselves in a collective ceremony with vows.
I shared this dream with a Jungian friend who specializes in romantic relationships, and he encouraged me to have the ceremony that I dreamed about — for myself. He reminded me that self-love and wholeness is the foundation of partnership. My dream was about marrying my inner masculine and feminine in service of wholeness.
I realized that it’s time for me to live “happily ever NOW” (a term coined by my dear friend Jen Aly) instead of “happily ever after.”
I chose The Esalen Institute in Big Sur, California, because it’s the place that launched my commitment to personal transformation 11 years ago. And it’s the place where I’ve always wanted to get married.
So I bought myself a sacred heart necklace (it’s inscribed: “You make the world a better place.”). I made a list of all that I want to release (and burned it). I wrote vows of commitment to myself, vows that actually moved me to tears. I celebrated with a soak in the splendid hot tubs, a glass of wine at dinner and an astrology reading offered as a “wedding gift” from a presenter at Esalen.
I was feeling empowered because I had made sacred vows in all areas of my life — to me.
This type of ceremony is powerful whether you are married, single or dating someone. We all need to commit to and cherish ourselves on the deepest fundamental level.
It is possible to live with a deep connection and commitment to our lives and to what we want to create.
A marriage ceremony is one way. For me, it was an empowering message to live happily ever now instead of thinking that when I have a husband, my life will be complete. We all do that to varying degrees. It could be a job, a house, a car, a certain amount in our bank account that we believe will make us happy.
Yet the reality is that when you are present to the gifts of your life and willing to meet life on life’s terms, you create the space for miracles to enter. The truth is that things and people don’t make us happy. We have the power to make ourselves happy by committing to creating an extraordinary life and choosing to love ourselves unconditionally!
Self-love is the foundation and heart of creating a life that we love.
Surprisingly, I’ve already had women ask me if I will be leading group self-love commitment ceremonies. I am drawn to leading a retreat in Ubud, Bali, that would culminate in a ceremony of meeting your beloved – YOU! My six months in Bali in 2011 transformed my life, and I am called to share the healers, water temple purification ceremonies, lush energy of the land and deep spirituality with other soul sisters. If a retreat in lush and lovely Bali sounds like something you’re called to participate in, please send me an email.
May you live happily ever now.