The Circle of Help, and the one where I tell you EVERYTHING

Buckle up folks, this is where I tell y’all everything that’s been going on.

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“Mom, it’s Supper Time.”

Those of you who’ve been with me since the beginning, and those who have actually read back to the beginning of the blog (and I’m so amazed and humbled by all of you) know that Sweetie & I have been in financial recovery from the failure of our first business in 2011.

We had no savings, we had no credit resources or family in a position to help us.

The reason for us starting the business and all the adventures can be found here, in the blog I started shortly before we moved out west:

http://thatsthelife.wordpress.com

We moved out west and started our own business in a bid to break the cycle of poverty and stress we found ourselves in Toronto.

What I didn’t write in thatsthelife was the awakening I felt when we first visited the coast.

I always knew I’d grow into the psychic thing, and I realized I needed to be out here to do it. Something about this place is… Activating.

What killed our business, ultimately, was that unbeknownst to us, the company manufacturing our roaster was going bankrupt, and defaulting on roaster orders left and right.

An order that should have taken six weeks to fill took NINE MONTHS. Nine months of paying for an empty warehouse. This was not something we could have anticipated.

Even so, when we finally got the roaster, and through providence and the knowledge of friends got the chimney plans approved by a crooked / incompetent bylaw officer who was fired a year later, we actually got our business off the ground.

A year later we were so close, SO CLOSE to breaking even. All we needed was one more cafe account or two more restaurant accounts. It should not have been a problem because the west coast is FULL of restaurants and cafés.

Except the vast majority of them, while they loved our product, didn’t want to switch to us in our first year of business. They wanted to make sure we were a sustainable business before they committed to us.

It was a catch-22 we could not have anticipated. Most of our accounts were out of town, and shockingly, many businesses refused to buy from women. We didn’t realize what was going on until we hired a sales rep who knew nothing about coffee, gave him a script and sent him out into the world. He got accounts for us in places we couldn’t get meetings with, including Quality Foods.

After two years of adrenaline we were tapped out – physically, financially and emotionally. We let go. Everything fell apart astonishingly quickly. It broke our hearts.

From that place of ruin, staring, stupefied, at the wreckage of our dreams, we began to slowly pick up the pieces and start again.

I got the hospital job, again through providence and the kindness of friends, and I started an anonymous blog called “The Brain Farts of a Psychic in Training” because, after all that, what did I have to lose?

Let’s start being honest, I thought. Let me finally be fully weird, let me live my inner reality out loud.

And so that brings me here, to today.

My life has completely changed. If you read thatsthelife, you may see some parallels to the person I am now, but you’ll see a lot of differences too. That woman was trying to be something on the world’s terms. Now I am me, on my own terms.

And this is someone that younger Kate didn’t believe she could be. Maybe when I’m 60, but not now. Not while I have to be a real person…

I know better now. And I have all of you to thank.

You have lifted me up out of poverty. You have encouraged me. You have donated and made it possible to for me to visit my mother in a time when a frightening diagnosis threatened to take her from us at any moment. I would have been powerless to visit her without your help.

Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

As of today, I am officially okay. We are out of crisis mode, god willing, we will not go through that again in this life.

And yet, it all got me here. Would I have ever come out as psychic if our business had worked? I doubt it.

The beauty of life, when you’re lucky enough to see it, is how much your existence actually matters, how much impact you have on the world around you. Our business startup profoundly affected the west coast and the lives around us.

One competing roastery was started as a copy-cat of our business. This guy pumped us for information pretending to be an investor, and then turned around and started his own roastery because it was a good business plan. We had anticipated this within the first year of opening our business, once we’d illuminated the market, (we’d seen it before) and it did not impact us much, as most of our accounts were out of town.

But it was still a dick move. We are not friends.

Now, knowing that place exists because of us, I smile inside when I see their roastery every day, burning their coffee all to hell!

Even better, our roastery reincarnated. It was purchased by a young family we knew before we started the business. They were the only people in town we could talk to about coffee.

They were able to take a business that was on the brink of making it and inject it with some much-needed marketing dollars. Three years later, we are still drinking their coffee. It is superb. And we’re so grateful *not* to be running that business after all.

We are friends with them, and it was they who enlightened us about the shocking bankruptcy of the 30 year old roaster manufacturer with the stellar reputation.

They also purchased the warehouse we were renting, and the house on the property, completely transforming their own life, and the life of the former property owner who was eager to downsize his own life. He spent the next six months living out of his truck with his dog and surfing the coast from Canada to Mexico.

So here we are. Our life isn’t perfect, and there’s a lot we’d like to change, but something happened today that just woke me up, shocked me out of this feeling of lack that somehow became habit.

We were looking at a new apartment. We would like to move, but the housing market in Tofino is tricky. The place we saw today was such a disaster – the bathroom was a health hazard. It made us both so, so grateful for what we have, as stressful and complicated as it can be. (I don’t feel like complaining about it, maybe I’ll elaborate another day.)

We were sitting in a coffee shop, slack-jawed and in shock, when I ran into a friend. This friend had been in pain all night and was holding on to a prescription that she couldn’t afford to fill.

This just pissed me off. Folks in the US might think all Canadians get “free health care” but it’s not true. We do get more than US citizens, but it’s far from comprehensive. If you’re poor, you can see a doctor, but you can’t pay for your meds.

Even life-saving medication like chemo costs tens of thousands of dollars, and I know too many people paying out of pocket for this.

I can’t pay for chemo, but I could certainly pay for penicillin. I realized I reached that place of safety where I actually *have* an extra $30 to help a friend in need.

And I would not hesitate. Look at how my life has changed, look at all the love and support in this blog over three years – look at how much you’ve helped each other, and me! I did not hesitate to step up. I have five years of my life documented to show how much the kindness of friends, strangers and family has helped me.

There is another person who seemed to materialize in my life so that I could simply, easily, joyfully give her the help I have to offer. It’s so funny how we all get to be angels, if we just seize the opportunity.

Sometimes I think about God. I think about miracles and divine providence, and proof of a benevolent and loving source. I know this love exists because I’ve experienced it first-hand.

And I also know that god is in every single person who has helped me, that I am expressing my god-self when I just do a gesture, one small thing that means so little to me, in terms of what it costs, but it yanks another person back from the brink. God is there, but god force and god self is expressed in community, through the circulation of love and caring gestures, through the Economy of Awesomeness.

I have been seriously considering removing the donate button, out of a feeling of “I’m not in crisis mode anymore, I therefore should not be asking for help.”

But that’s not true. Yes, I am out of crisis mode. It happened so gradually, we barely noticed. The Universe had to show us real crisis to help us understand, truly, all we’ve been given.

Universe: REMEMBER THIS?

Holy crap, I’ve never been more grateful.

A few months ago, a friend of ours in Toronto was desperately seeking housing. What she needed did not meet up with what she could afford to pay.

Did she get pissed at the universe? No. She joined habitat for humanity and spent a week building a house for actual homeless women. She was one step away from homeless herself, crashing on friends couches. Do you know what happened the week after she finished the house?

She ran into a stranger who saw her putting up posters asking for the impossible: an above-ground self-contained apartment in a crowded city for an affordable rent. It just so happened, this stranger had such a place to offer.

Crisis mode has definition, sharply-defined lines. We may not be there anymore, but honestly, we do still need help. We need a lot of help to get where we’re going.

So I’m going to leave the donate button up. I may be able to afford penicillin for my friend’s rotten tooth, but I can’t afford $1400 in dental work for my beautiful Sunshine cat. I’m going to do a fundraiser for her at the end of January to raise that money – there will be a very special rate on pet readings, stay tuned. I will stay plugged into the circle of help, and I promise to help whenever and wherever I can, out of faith and certainty that what help we need will be given, and what we have to offer, we will certainly give.

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5 thoughts on “The Circle of Help, and the one where I tell you EVERYTHING

  1. thank you so much for sharing this with us! a wonderful reminder that the universe works things out for us even when it feels like the complete opposite. not that we “pay it forward” to get something in return, but often, the universe scratches our back while we’re busy scratching someone else’s back……its beautiful. glad to know you and sweetie are in a good place!! ❤

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  2. Kate, it’s amazing to realize how far you’ve come; you two have worked so hard, and have created such a wonderful life together. Not only is it wonderful to feel your gratitude, but you two should also be very proud of yourselves and the way you’ve handled the challenges of this phase of your journeys–with grace, joy, love and openness.

    I had such a wonderful moment today where I passed a person with a sign asking for “change for food.” I thought of the emergency granola bar I had beside me, and waved him over. I told him I didn’t have change, but I had a bit of food to share. We had such a beautiful moment of connection; I left feeling like he had blessed ME, rather than the other way around, and drove on quite teary.

    Wanted to pass along, too, that if you and Kat do move, I’m happy to come up with the truck to help, if that’s useful. It would be wonderful to see you both again! Hope you have an absolutely blessed holiday season. xox Toni

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