In the summer of 2003, a journey began, creating space for love, initially without my awareness. Nine months later, on a beautiful Saturday in April, little did I suspect that I was about to give birth to my new life.
Tom was picking me up the evening of April 3rd to attend the birthday party my acupuncturist was having for her husband. It was an uneventful week, but when I woke up that Saturday morning, I felt very different! It was as if I was 16 again and had a special date to the prom! I was excited, anxious and nervous! I was excited for Tom to pick me up, I was excited to attend the party and I was most excited to have him and my older daughter meet! She had been asked to assist with kitchen duties, keeping food replenished, etc. I hadn’t introduced them prior to that, as I wasn’t planning on anything serious developing in Tom’s and my relationship.
I don’t know if he noticed, but when I got into Tom’s car that evening, I felt giddy! I recall it was a gorgeous evening. As we were driving, I called his attention to the full moon that was coming up! Now, Tom is always aware of the moon and its stages. He told me it was not yet a full moon. “It looks full to me,” I said. He answered, “Well, it must be an Abrahamson full moon.” I loved that accommodation!
What a pleasure it was to observe Tom and my daughter meet for the first time upon our arrival. I stood back and watched the energy exchange. Warm in their greeting, Tom was ready to love Kira because she was my daughter; Kira wanting to make sure Tom was a good person for her mom. I felt like the teenage daughter introducing her date to her mother. It was an interesting and strange role reversal that transpired in the blink of an eye.
Shortly thereafter, I unexpectedly heard a whisper in my ear. “I love you,” it said. I froze and then experienced a bit of a panic attack. “Why are you saying that?” I asked. “Because it’s true,” I heard Tom’s voice respond. A flood of emotions rushed through me. Could I admit that I had also fallen in love with him? Could I trust the emotions, both his and mine?
I’m not sure how I got through the rest of the evening. I do know we had fun and I was very happy! I remember my daughter telling Tom as we left the party, “Take good care of my mom.” Who was the parent? It was a magical evening, if not a bit overwhelming!
Everything was different from that evening on! We were in love! While I was ultimately able to connect with that emotion, I initially found myself very pragmatic. My concept of myself as a romantic was challenged! I know this was fear. I had been single for over 13 years and quite happy, I might reiterate, playing it safe! Now I was vulnerable. However, amazingly, in that vulnerability, I felt safe!
Over the next several months, we discussed his moving in with me. No small feat for, as you recall, I had filled every inch of my home. While I had cleared out a drawer and a section of my closet to create space for a partner, the reality of another person actually moving in was a bit mind-boggling, to say the least. But I began clearing in earnest and we made adjustments along the way. Before that transition, I communicated with my home about the energy shift to come with Tom joining the household. This is an important aspect of traditional Feng Shui thought: you treat your home as a separate entity and respect its energy and effect on your life. I could almost feel my home smiling in response and knew it was happy as well.
Tom and I were always in agreement about our commitment to one another and neither of us felt the need to get married. However, synchronicity was about to intervene again when, in May 2006, we traveled to China and Tibet on a Feng Shui-focused tour. And, it just so happened, three of my original four Feng Shui
Love Divas were a part of our group of 21 travelers. It started almost immediately. “Why don’t you and Tom get married on this trip?” At first we took it lightly, but as the tour progressed, the question continued to be lovingly asked. Everyone seemed to be conspiring to make it happen. After about a week of this persistence, Tom and I decided we should take the question seriously. After all, some of these same friends had encouraged me to set the intention back in 2003 to make room, emotionally and physically, for a life partner. Evidently, this journey wasn’t over!
Tom and I looked at each other one evening and, almost simultaneously, said, “Let’s do it!” My only request was that we marry in Tibet. I had traveled there previously and had fallen in love with the area and its people. Tom was definitely agreeable. The next day at lunch, we announced we were getting married in Tibet!
Mind you, we had no idea how this ceremony would take place, where it would take place or when! We had only four days in Tibet and every day was already planned out for us. But we set that intention and shared it with our fellow travelers. The excitement meter maxed out; the energy level was palpable!
Several days later, we entered Lhasa, Tibet. Located at the bottom of a small basin surrounded by the Himalaya Mountains, Lhasa has an elevation of over 14,000 feet and lies in the center of the Tibetan Plateau with the surrounding mountains rising to 18,000 feet. The air only contains 68% of the oxygen compared to sea level. It was impossible to determine the effects of thin air versus our over-the-top happiness?
Our intention was immediately shared with our Tibetan tour guide. He enthusiastically responded he had been a Tibetan monk in the Jokhang Temple, the most sacred temple in Tibet. When his father died, Tibetan tradition required he return home to assist his mother and go to work to support the family. He left the monastery and became a tour guide. With his connection to the temple, our new friend could arrange for us to have our wedding ceremony in that sacred place!
Suddenly, our wedding was a reality and our fellow travelers excitedly took on the role of wedding party. Each had a job to do: finding a bottle of wine, buying wine cups, locating two long stem red roses, purchasing a wedding bowl for the rings, planning the wedding dinner! Tom and I shopped the market area to find something for me to wear. I purchased a beautiful brocade jacket from a vendor who took pride in being the one who sold me my wedding outfit. Our happiness and the excitement of our group’s energy were contagious. It seemed everyone there, tourist and vendor, knew about it!
Tom and I wrote our vows and Tom Hyder, an ordained minister, and his wife, Carole, one of my first Feng Shui teachers, wrote the wedding ceremony. On a beautiful afternoon, our wedding procession was led into an area of the Jokhang Temple where tourists were not allowed. Just prior to entering, each of us purchased a Tibetan Scarf called a ‘Khata’. It is usually made of white silk, symbolizing the pure heart of the giver. It is often given as a gift at special Tibetan ceremonies, such as weddings, funerals, births, and graduations.
The Tibetan monks invited us to participate in a special blessing before escorting us to the beautiful ceremonial room where our tour guide had arranged to have the monks chanting and drumming. During this 20-minute ceremony, our loving friends and colleagues came, one by one, to share well wishes and blessings as they each placed their Khata around our necks.
Following the chanting, Tom and I presented the monks with traditional red envelopes containing donations to the Temple. And then, with our friends standing as witnesses, Tom Hyder spoke of our spiritual union, blending East and West, ancient with modern. This amazing wedding ceremony, taking place over seven thousand miles from home and in one of the highest cities in the world, was stunningly rich with intention and love.
Following our procession from the temple, a wedding feast awaited us at a traditional Tibetan restaurant. At its conclusion we were presented with a wedding cake – Tibetan style. While unsure how to decorate a wedding cake for westerners, they made it as festive and meaningful as possible with what they had. Our wonderful cake was decorated with frosting flowers, two cat figures, and a lotus candle that, when lighted, opened and spun around, playing “Happy Birthday.” It was perfect! And though Tibet is not a region not known for desserts, the cake was delicious!
Tom and I could not have dreamed of this day, let alone planned it! Our wedding was an inspiring example of the power of setting a pure and focused intention, then letting go of questioning how it might happen! From that moment on, the age-old process carried us along effortlessly as it evolved to culminate in our extraordinary wedding ceremony. This intentional journey was complete!
“An intention synchronistically organizes its own fulfillment.” - Deepak Chopra