Meeting My North Star – Emma Livery

Meeting my North Star – Emma Livery

So many moments from our past shape who we are … even now. My life, and I believe all lives … are a collection of shards of glass that become a part of this life’s kaleidoscope of colors. Those shards of experiences are various colors and we place them inside our inner tube (that we call the self) and then we twist and turn things around inside and see very different things unfold before our eyes in amazement.
But all those small pieces of glass roll around and form a myriad of magical shapes, symbols, and patterns in our lives. Those pieces will always remain inside us as long as we have this body and whether we realize them or not, they color our world, our perception, and enliven us with their continued beauty.
In my life many of those beautiful crystals were people. Some were events, and some I shaped myself with each layer of awareness that unfolded. Every piece of wisdom integrated added more color, depth, and nuance into that kaleidoscope and have enhanced my awareness and enlivened my perceptions.

I remember, being in Paris and knowing my way into the Paris Opera (Palais, Garnier) on my first trip to that beautiful city when I was 19 years old.
Without warning, I got such a strong past life flash that I walked into the backstage entrance, without anyone stopping me. Undaunted or stopped by anything like a sylph, I made my way backstage, and sat in the audience watching the rehearsal of “La Fille mal Gardée”, being done on the stage. I remember marveling that I knew my way intuitively around that theater like the back of my hand. I remember, feeling … like I was home.
That was until someone realized that I did not belong there and asked me who I was and what I was doing there as this was a closed rehearsal.
I pretended to be a stupid American and they could not figure out how I got back there because all the doors from the front were locked.
I of course did not come in from the front.

I was politely escorted out, but I remember sitting there for what seemed a long time, as feelings swept through my body like a wind that wanted to overwhelm me. Nostalgia swam through my psyche, pleasure and pain, and the awareness of a soul’s joy and excitement that had clouded her/my judgement and where we made a choice that I knew cost me my life in that life.
I could smell my costume on fire, I could smell the burning of my skin. I could hear the gasps of the audience in horror, I could see the dwarf shimmying down the rope from the boom above the stage and throwing a piece of burlap on top of me to squelch the flames. And I remembered the terrible physical pain.
But what was worse was the terrible feeling, that I had contributed to this horrific event and that I had no one to blame but myself.
When such moments happen, they come in unprovoked and without warning. It was as if the person I was then, was attempting to communicate with the me … now.
It felt as if I was bumping into the filaments of another life and the intentions and choices of another me.
She wanted me to remember. She wanted me to love her and forgive her. She wanted to come home inside who I was now. I was in her home. We could come home. She needed to be with me.
I remember questioning everything that I thought I was. I questioned if I was really me or if I was finishing up her lifetime that was clearly cut short.
And then I realized that it was both.
The angels had told me when I was a child that no part of myself could be left behind. That to transcend this reality, I had to embrace all the pasts, all the things in this present moment and integrate them inside myself in a balanced way so that all felt loved and supported, honored and respected for the lessons they carried and the wisdom they experienced.
Leaving the Palais Garnier, I was in a daze. I did not know if I was really here or still there. One foot lingered in another time and place, seeking to find peace inside me.
Little did I know how that young French ballerina was my North Star in this life.
She would quietly point me in the direction of my true north. She would be the wraith that would initiate my actions and choices so that she could complete the unresolved karma that she carried and that I had unknowingly intended to integrate in this life.
I thought that I was making my own choices in this life … but the truth was that this life was to be one of integration of all my lives.
I had bumped into her many times as a child, but it was mostly in dreams. I would dream that I had caught on fire. I was running across a stage, but my costume was on fire. I would hear my own screams (that seemed to come from far away) echoing in my mind, and I would feel the rough burlap bag being dropped on my scorched flesh to put out the flames, as pieces of my skin were scraped off in their attempts to stop the fire. And I would see the face of the young dwarf who always stood on the batten (which were lengths of pipes that had drop curtains tied to that were where scenery was tied to be dropped down in scene changes). I would see his sweet face … so concerned … his odd shaped head, and his soothing voice as I passed out.

That is where I would wake up.
As I child, I had this dream repeatedly for years.
Because of the dream I was terrified that my room or the house would catch on fire. I had every escape route planned and all strategies and exits worked out in my mind.
As a 7-year-old, I heard a fire truck and instantly went out my bedroom window, down the roof to the tree at the side of the house, shimmied down the tree and when around to the front yard.
There I saw my mother in the front yard watching the fire truck down a few houses and she looked stunned as I came around out of breath, anxiety in my eyes, and scratched from the tree bark and limbs.
She asked me what I was doing, and I said, “I had to escape the house because of the fire!”

She said that our house was not on fire, but it was something a few houses down, as she pointed to the trucks.
That was when, I felt that even though my house was not on fire, I knew I could escape the fire. I knew that I could find a way out and to be safe.

From that point on the dream seemed to fade into the mist and the fear diminished. Some part of me knew that I would be smart in this life around fire.

I spent my childhood being very careful around fires. Even now, I am very careful around matches, fireplaces, etc. Somehow, this was an important lesson to remember.


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