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Life as 9 Initiations - and How I saw
God at the Frog Pond at Age 7


Sometimes it feels like life is a TEST, right?  Stuff happens.  And at the time, you cry out WHYYYY?!!! Why do I have to be challenged, frustrated, hurt, let down?  But down the road, you look back and see that same challenge as an initiation – a sort of rite of passage.  After you met that challenge, you were never the same.  

Well, as I’ve been learning with Maria Yraceburu, my indigenous mama and teacher, I’ve learned to actually recognize and even MAP these life passages that feel like initiations. She points out that indigenous people CELEBRATE the rites of passage in community.  But in our modern world, we tend to walk through these things alone.  We kind of ignore them at best, or forever see them as only tragedies, traumas, and disappointing failures.  

In my own work now, I have fashioned a map of the NINE life invitations, from conception to death, that we all walk through.  And we don’t just walk through them ONCE (like at our actual conception and death, for example.)  We keep cycling through them again and again.  Over the next few weeks, I’m going to be sharing this map with you.  I’ll lay out the 9 life initiations, and describe them.

But today, I want to share a personal story with you.  I want to share something tender from my own life of wisdom passages, as an example of how these strange or confronting or challenging “initiations” can happen to us in natural ways, leaving us forever changed.  I’m going to share with you a story of my first direct experience with what we might call God.

And first, I’m going to reveal to you one of my personal challenges that I’ve always lived with – my empathic sensitivity.  Now it’s my bread and butter, since I’m a professional Intuitive Strategist.  But it hasn’t always been easy to be an empath!  

Can I tell you a bit about myself as a kid?

I was the first born kid who always got straight A’s, followed the rules, and won the academic awards. I was also the deeply sensitive empathic kid who had moods were deeply affected by the people around me. When my mom couldn’t get out of bed for months at a time due to her depression, I felt both sad and hopeless, and driven to cheer her up. It seemed like cheering her up was the only way I could be happy. 

My empathic sensitivity was my secret. I was smart and applauded often, but I never felt like I belonged. I was too sensitive for the other kids’ playful jests. I was full of anxiety, terrified of losing. So I never participated in sports.

 I was my class valedictorian in high school, but I felt like an outsider. I never had a close group of friends. I was pretty and successful, but I felt more at home with the plants and animals in nature than with other people.

But I had a very rich childhood – in my imagination.  In my solitude.

The first time I felt complete, whole, and totally in my element, I was alone in nature. I was about seven years old, and my family was attending my Catholic church family camp in Julian California. I had wandered off alone, avoiding participating in the lawn games and basketball with the other kids. I came upon a frog pond. I was enjoying stalking a frog, catching it, kissing it, naming it, and then setting it free. I was in my element. That’s when I felt a movement in the air that was not wind. It was a warm loving feeling that blew through me, but did not move the grasses or the trees. I knew it was God. Like the good Catholic girl I was, I stood up straight and dutifully asked this wind “what do you want of me?“ Wind replied, “Love. Just Love.“ And this felt so right. It felt more correct and right than all the various masses and classes and homework I had been given to complete. That instance was the first instance I felt the fullness of satisfaction that comes from opening like a conduit or channel, and allowing wisdom and love to flow through me.

Since then, I have mostly felt that feeling when I am teaching, speaking, or performing on stage. That same powerful wind feeling blows through me, and I light up inside. I feel wise words accidentally come out of my mouth, and it feels so wonderful. I feel like I am doing my best work,. I feel like I am being utilized to my fullest extent. I feel calm, supported, peaceful and fulfilled in my purpose.

Of course, my inner critic comes in loud, shutting down the flow sometimes. My logical brain questions everything. Sometimes I get scared that my words won’t be received, or that I will be misunderstood, or that someone will judge me harshly. And that shuts me down.

But as I have grown through my own life passages, facing my own challenges, I have learned more and more how to open to my own flow, and let genius ideas flood through me.  And I’ve learned that’s the BEST use of these 9 Life Passages, wisdom passages, initiations, as they naturally lay out in my life.

I can look back on my life and see where the nine life passages have come around again and again to challenge me, to test me, and to give me the chance to upper level into my own gifts, power, and leadership. And I know that journey will continue until I stop breathing.  

I suspect you have similar stories of your own.  Over the next few weeks, I’ll share in more depth about each one of the 9 Life Initiations.  And I’ll invite you to give yourself credit for the wisdom you’ve accumulated by walking through such passages in your own life.

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About Mellissa

Mellissa was a Stanford-educated business lawyer until her intuitive abilities awakened in the year 2000 with the birth of her daughter.  Now she bridges the worlds of business strategy and intuitive intelligence. Creative designers, Fortune 500 executives, and thought leaders hire her to teach them how to Channel their Genius – to create on demand, to stay in their flow state, and to create lucrative businesses that follow their souls’ calling.

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