Has your life ever stopped you in your tracks? Mine has – both literally and figuratively.

Actually, when I step back and pull focus, life seems to have been filled with moments when I was stopped in my tracks, and was even taken off course and direction.

I have been exploring ways of finding meaning in those moments and periods when life -in all of its interconnectedness, also created fragmentation for me and my reality, and unexpectedly took me off course.  This fragmentation can also be referred to as trauma and soul loss. These life occurrences are also framed as initiatory experiences. They can happen in subtle ways and extreme ones. This can happen over time and in acute moments. As someone that has come to know herself as a highly sensitive person and empath, there are additional layers to navigating life uncertainties because of the way our nervous systems are impacted by energy and abrupt change.

In my lifetime, I have had to manage and navigate a great deal of uncertainty and also experience more heightened sensitivity because of this. Early on I realized that creative play/work such as art-making and creative writing would be practices – resources as ritual, I could continue to rely on to provide re-integration, except in some times of extreme uncertainty.


Integration Process pink by elizabeth izzo ink 2017

Ink pen on paper with enhanced color: Integration Process Drawing (pink) by Elizabeth Izzo


I have had periods in my life when my ability to function as a visual artist was thwarted by injury, illness or both. Those were specifically challenging periods for me. Dark times. Times when I also realized that I was without the type of community (established or not), or a functional family of origin that could have served as a softer cushion for me to fall into while I needed time and care to heal and regenerate – that safe space that is necessary to integrate those fragmentations, to be loved and held with unconditional acceptance through sustained duration. We are all worthy and deserving of this LOVE whether or not that is our experience.


collage sept 2017 by elizabeth izzo

Collage created from travel brochures collected in Edinburgh, UK. by Elizabeth Izzo 2017


I was fortunate to have periods in my journey where acceptance, rest and perspective were provided for me through visiting my family abroad. The experiences gained over two trips to Scotland, where my daughter and son-in-law were living, offered me hope for finding my way out of dark times. I was held by their community of friends and family in a new way that was much needed for me in order to begin to restore order to the life that waited for me back home. I also greatly benefitted by being exposed to cultural norms that were different than mine. Back home, I had been living in a reality where there was an incredible amount of hyper-normalization of events that were occurring around me and to me. I gained the strength I needed to return home with a new kind of tenacity that was necessary to confront these abnormalities.

What happens for me with my instinct and will to survive and recover is that I discover and create new tools. I have had to rely on tools, and I still do – ones that I can access from established and emergent teachings, and ones I have had to call forth and allow to arise in me. I understand this process to be one that is aligned with my soul purpose and that is partnered with Source. This process affords me the invitation for creating a new story for myself.

For instance, it was not always the case that I had safe healthcare that was delivered with ethical and optimal outcomes for me and my body. I have learned to draw in safer supports for the care of my body, mind and emotions. One tool that I apply to accomplish this needed shift is the use of an affirmation practice.

I’m provided with trusted

and effective guidance,

care and support.

All of this life living and processing calls for courage, curiosity and creativity! We have to make room for the moments when we both feel discouraged and are also moving into empowerment. Affirmations are a destination and a path towards bringing in new story themes. When I need to hold space for fear that is arising in me, I try to remember to include that in my practice: I am feeling off center in this moment AND I  know I will return to balance. This is a way for me to have a full embodied experience that does not deny or diminish any parts of me needing my attention.


When we are navigating a course through personal and collective times of uncertainty, we can call forth the qualities we need to assist us in passing through these periods. We can allow a new story to unfold that has creative opportunity to shift paradigms.  We can allow our old stories – ones that have stopped us in our tracks and taken us into deep process to find place as compost, enriching the soil for life’s next season.


artichoke seed head elizabeth izzo 2017

Bursting seed pod of artichoke plant. Photographed by Elizabeth Izzo 2017


Like My Own 


between individualism and collectivism

a tree grows


A deeply rooted and mighty one

she waits for me whispering

take comfort in my calm

my balance

my nature


There is no conversion

only revelation woven into this web of wildness


In the time of all there is

meet me


You will be guided

letting resistance fade away into the gloaming

where it will be transformed

and a new day will dawn again

Divinity’s promise


Until then

let us lay with the wildflowers

the meadow grasses

and the birdsongs

I want to love you like my own.


by Elizabeth Izzo ©2017

integration process by green elizabeth izzo ink 2017

Ink pen on paper with enhanced color: Integration Process Drawing (green) by Elizabeth Izzo 2017


Updated December 3, 2017: Affirmations are a powerful tool for transformation and change and are made manifest in mysterious ways. Unfoldment for change takes many forms, and is in relationship with your own energy and soul’s intention. The process for change is as unique as each individual is.

This post was written partly in response to an inquiry for reflection in conjunction with enrollment in Findhorn Foundation’s Living The New Story workshop.

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