I recently got interviewed by voyagebaltimore.com about "my story" and how I ended up at this juncture of my life. It is a deepening to my previous blog "Dying to My Old Self".
I AM honored to share it below.
Hi Colleen. We're thrilled to have a chance to learn your story today. So, before we get into specifics, maybe you can briefly walk us through how you got to where you are today?
My name is Colleen, and I am grateful to share my healing journey and story with you.
My journey truly began when my love, partner, and best friend, Lou, unexpectedly died while celebrating my birthday in Paris. I had just turned 50 years old.
They say a spiritual awakening can happen spontaneously, or it can happen after a life-altering trauma. I experienced it both ways, having found yoga in 2014, followed by this life-altering trauma in 2018, a few days after my 50th birthday.
I've read many accounts where people have turned their "pain into a purpose" after losing someone significant in their lives.
Shortly after I witnessed Lou take his last breath, I promised him I would live my best, most joyful, vibrant life in his memory.
While his loss devastated me to my core, it was also the catalyst that changed EVERYTHING in my life, opening me up to my truth.
It also becomes the catalyst for healing not just from his loss but for also doing the deep work of healing older trauma and patterns.
I decided to dive headfirst into the deep end.
I started to examine every aspect of my life to see what was truly not working for me anymore.
Before his passing, I had my social media & marketing company which was only a few years in the making. Before that, I worked in the service industry for over 25 years. I was the quintessential party girl for most of my adult life.
After his death, NONE of this resonated with me anymore.
Six months after he passed, I decided to radically shift my life in search of my 𝙏𝙧𝙪𝙚 𝘼𝙪𝙩𝙝𝙚𝙣𝙩𝙞𝙘 𝙎𝙚𝙡𝙛.
I really wanted to know myself, and more importantly, I really wanted to love myself.
I signed up for Yoga Teacher Training and became a Reiki Practitioner.
I stopped drinking alcohol after decades of abuse (having already quit doing recreational drugs in 2014.)
I stopped eating meat and drinking coffee to be the healthiest version of myself I could be.
I also signed up for every spiritual-based & yoga-based training I could find.
(In hindsight, it was too much too fast but also a relevant part of my journey.)
Through this process, as I searched for my truth, I knew with complete clarity that I wanted to help others on their healing journey. I knew part of my Sacred Purpose and Divine Plan was to support other beautiful souls in their spiritual awakening and healing.
Since then, I have done so much work (and continue to do so) towards my healing and growth so that I can show up for myself and others authentically.
I created 𝗧𝗵𝗲 𝗦𝗼𝘂𝗹 𝗡𝗼𝘂𝗿𝗶𝘀𝗵, my website, and wellness company in 2019 to help spread my intention to share my soul-based healing modalities and tools with others.
I now offer Soul Support through various modalities, including:
-𝙍𝙚𝙞𝙠𝙞 & 𝙄𝙣𝙩𝙪𝙞𝙩𝙞𝙫𝙚 𝙃𝙚𝙖𝙡𝙞𝙣𝙜
- 𝙑𝙞𝙤𝙡𝙚𝙩 𝙁𝙡𝙖𝙢𝙚 𝘼𝙘𝙩𝙞𝙫𝙖𝙩𝙞𝙤𝙣𝙨
-𝙂𝙧𝙤𝙪𝙥 𝙀𝙣𝙚𝙧𝙜𝙮 𝙃𝙚𝙖𝙡𝙞𝙣𝙜 𝙎𝙚𝙨𝙨𝙞𝙤𝙣𝙨 & 𝘼𝙘𝙩𝙞𝙫𝙖𝙩𝙞𝙤𝙣𝙨
-𝙎𝙖𝙘𝙧𝙚𝙙 𝙎𝙤𝙪𝙡 𝙎𝙥𝙞𝙧𝙞𝙩𝙪𝙖𝙡 𝙈𝙚𝙣𝙩𝙤𝙧𝙞𝙣𝙜 (Intuitive Mentoring to empower Healing, Soul Connection, & Purpose)
-𝙔𝙤𝙜𝙖 𝙛𝙤𝙧 𝙩𝙝𝙚 𝙎𝙤𝙪𝙡 (heart-based Restorative Yoga infused with Sacred Presence and Holy Fire Reiki)
-𝙎𝙖𝙘𝙧𝙚𝙙 𝙎𝙤𝙪𝙡 𝘾𝙖𝙘𝙖𝙤 𝘾𝙚𝙧𝙚𝙢𝙤𝙣𝙞𝙚𝙨 (to connect with the higher vibrational plant spirit of Cacao and deepen into our hearts)
-𝙁𝙧𝙚𝙚 𝘾𝙤𝙢𝙢𝙪𝙣𝙞𝙩𝙮 𝙀𝙣𝙚𝙧𝙜𝙮 𝙃𝙚𝙖𝙡𝙞𝙣𝙜 𝙫𝙞𝙖 𝙕𝙤𝙤𝙢 (the last Sunday of every month 10 am-10:30 am)
In 2021 I started teaching Reiki I & II in a way that not only honored the lineage of Holy Fire III Reiki but also introduced the student to the heart-opening plant spirit of Ceremonial Cacao AND the benefits of working with the Violet Flame.
It is a one-of-a-kind training that I Am proud to have co-created.
I genuinely love sharing these empowerment weekends with students.
In January of 2022, I completed my Holy Fire III©️ Karuna Reiki Master©️ training, which was a huge growth point for me.
This Spring, I started walking the path of a Paq'o/ Shamanic Practitioner to deepen my connection to our Earth Mother and myself.
Through these experiences and the loss of my partner, I have come to know my shadows and light. I have come to know who I AM and why I Am here. I AM here to be of service.
Your soul remembers who you are and why you are here.
Your soul remembers your most healed state.
I AM here to assist in that soul remembering.
This purpose is my passion and my heart.
I believe that when we work to heal ourselves, we help heal each other and the planet.
I Am so grateful for this awakening and the love that Lou and I share that started me on this path of transformation.
And I know my journey is just beginning! Can you talk to us about the challenges and lessons you've learned along the way? Would you say it's been easy or smooth in retrospect?
The road has been a fantastic growth experience but certainly not without many challenges/lessons. Most of the obstacles I faced were created by old stories of my ego-mind that left me feeling unworthy, not smart enough, or good enough to share these healing modalities. I also didn't trust that others would be open to receiving healing from me because of who I used to be. I didn't trust myself in the beginning. I constantly compared myself to my mentors, friends, and fellow teachers until I felt paralyzed in fear. When Covid hit, and we yoga teachers pivoted to Zoom, I immediately disconnected from my desire to teach. I didn't feel confident in my ability to lead on that platform. This realization made me re-evaluate if this path was for me. I even stopped practicing yoga for a while. I also lost my Social Media & Marketing company on March 16, 2020, which was 80% of my income. I felt frozen in fear. I knew I wanted to step away from marketing and focus solely on my healing & yoga offerings, but it was not how I anticipated that happening.
Despite my best efforts, I wasn't eligible for unemployment benefits.
I was deep in fear, and my future felt so uncertain.
It was a mess for a while, and I was a mess for a while.
I knew I had a choice; live in fear or choose love.
Stay stuck, or move forward in my heart, in faith and trust.
I chose the latter and started praying/asking for guidance.
It was at this time a sponsored ad in my Instagram feed kept popping up for an online Yoga Teacher Training through Yoga Farm Ithaca.
I laugh looking back because this ad was relentless in my news feed.
I think it was the 17th or 18th time I saw it before I actually read it.
And wouldn't you know it, this YTT spoke to my soul, and it ended up shifting EVERYTHING, providing me with a new perspective. It truly changed my life in so many ways.
I became a 300-hour certified yoga teacher in Kundalini Yoga with facets of Ayurveda, Enneagram, and Lunar Cycles woven into the teachings. They gave me a partial scholarship and let me make payments. I AM so grateful to them and the educators.
Around the same time, I started seeing clients for Reiki and energy healing via Zoom/virtually.
It was from this space that I truly opened up to my purpose.
I found I loved and thrived in that environment (whereas teaching yoga had not felt good to me at all).
I realized then that yoga was a beautiful beginning but that my heart was guiding me to focus on holding space in a completely different capacity through the lens of energy healing, ceremony, and mentoring.
I did not step entirely away from teaching.
I eventually shifted from teaching Vinyasa Yoga to sharing Restorative Yoga, or what I call Yoga for the Soul.
I am currently teaching via workshops, pop-up classes, and private celebrations.
(Find me teaching a class called Mudras, Mantras and Meditations this summer in Finksburg. Info on my website)
I recently co-created a birthday celebration with four amazing souls where we did Restorative Yoga + Energy Healing.
It was such a gift to share that space and energy.
I look forward to doing many more of these in the future.
And yes, I still struggle with unworthiness and a lack-based mentality. I AM human.
But now, when it shows up, I have more tools to access from all the beautiful experiences and trainings I have received, as well as from all my amazing mentors and friends who continually support my journey,
I must also acknowledge my brave, beautiful clients who show up to do their work.
Their healing is my healing and vice versa.
I AM so GRATEFUL for them.
As Ram Dass says, "We Are All Just Walking Each Other Home."
I can now look back and say what a BEAUTIFUL gift that time in my life was as each of these experiences became a HUGE growth point for me. It made me genuinely show up for myself and to do the work to release these old stories based in fear and untruth.
(And I eventually received financial assistance through the SBA a year later, Thank you, DIVINE!)
All of this played a pivotal part in my healing, and I Am so grateful for each moment.
The best part, I truly got to know myself and love myself at a deeper level.
Talk about empowerment!
Thanks – so what else should our readers know about your work and what you're currently focused on?
I AM joyfully spreading the word about all of my latest Sacred Offerings.
(click hyperlinks to learn more)
Lion's Gate Portal Group Energy Healing on July 31, 2022
Sacred Soul Cacao Ceremony + Group Energy Healing on August 14, 2022
Reiki I Certification on August 6-7th, 2022
Reiki II Certification on September 24-25th, 2022 (must complete Reiki I prior)
Mind, Body, and Spirit Fest on October 8 at Wishing Star Farm and Wellness
And I AM deeply excited to share my NEW Mastery Empowerment Activation via Zoom called the "𝙎𝙤𝙪𝙡 𝙅𝙤𝙪𝙧𝙣𝙚𝙮 𝘼𝙬𝙖𝙠𝙚𝙣𝙞𝙣𝙜." on September 11, 2022.
Finally, I will be traveling to both West Virginia and Mount Shasta, California, this summer for play and growth.
I AM genuinely excited about what the future holds.
Despite my loss, I Am so blessed (and so grateful) for this redirection my life took back in 2018.
I was gifted an opportunity to co-create a life of joy and purpose where I get to spend my time in nature anytime I desire, travel, lead and teach, and assist others on their healing journey.
How amazing is that?
My "work" (which is not work at all) has helped me foster deeper connections with my community, the Earth, my friends and loved ones, and most importantly MYSELF.
I Am so grateful for all who have held me and supported me during this rapid growth and transformation process.
And I Am equally grateful for all of my clients and students.
Thank you for taking the time to read my journey.
I will end by sharing with you these words of wisdom passed down to me by my teachers and their teacher's teachers.
“𝙒𝙚 𝘼𝙧𝙚 𝙏𝙝𝙚 𝙊𝙣𝙚𝙨 𝙒𝙚 𝙃𝙖𝙫𝙚 𝘽𝙚𝙚𝙣 𝙒𝙖𝙞𝙩𝙞𝙣𝙜 𝙁𝙤𝙧”.
We always have been.
I Am here as #SoulSupport if you are hearing the call to deepen into your healing. Please reach out to me.
With gratitude and love,
Soul Journey Awakening Group Healing via Zoom $44
Sacred Soul Energetic Tune-Up + Chakra Balancing- Sliding Scale Fee $111-$133
Sacred Soul Intuitive Healing- Sliding Scale Fee $144-$177
Sacred Soul Spiritual Mentoring- Intro Offer $444 for a limited time
Reiki I classes $265.55 Reiki II classes $265.55 (full weekends)
Violet Flame Healing + Activations- Sliding Scale Fee $111-$133
Yoga for the Soul + Energy Healing (prices vary depending on group size)
*Colleen regularly donates a portion of the proceeds raised through her work to earth-based charities and environmental causes.
Book a session: https://www.thesoulnourish.com/offerings-energyexchange