A Mermaid Metaphor Of Endurance And The Law Of Attraction~No Grit No Pearl

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Hello there Mermaid Junkies,

I wanted to share a spiritual little mermaid metaphor with you that coincides with something that's been on my mind this week.

Won't you pour some tea and let's have a visit? I'm having my Mermaid Spinach Seaweed lemonade today, Would You like the recipe?
I was talking with my Beloved Gardener a few days ago and we were discussing the topic of work ethic and whether or not we instilled a work ethic into our children at young ages. The debate was whether or not our children actually have a great work ethic now as adults. We both had parents that really knew the power of hard work and why work experience teaches. They taught us very well and in turn, I think we taught our children also.

I know for me personally, All 4 of my children have had jobs since they were 15. I made sure of it. I never gave them the alternative of going to college or work. If they wanted college they were going to have to pay for it themselves or get a scholarship. In the process, they also needed to keep a paying job. I have always been the kind of mother that does not give handouts, nor loan my children money or anything of that nature. In my opinion, it creates an entitled child that doesn't understand the value of things or sacrifice. Let me give you a scenario that I have seen play out time and time again. To give a child a car for turning a certain age or getting certain grades, watch how fast they wreck it, compared to making them earn the money to buy one of their own. You'll notice the one that has spent their own money will appreciate it and never take it for granted.

That conversation leads me to talk about my audition for Weeki Wachee Springs a little over two years ago. I had been a Weeki Wachee mermaid when I was 17, over 30 years. When I moved back to Florida in 2015 and newly on my own after filing for a divorce, I was thinking about working at Weeki Wachee Springs as a Mermaid again.
As you know I was doing it all on my own with no money or assets or anything from my ex, so I was at a financial low when I was first divorced, and at the time I also had a super negative limiting belief about my age. While trying to find my sea legs again, I was thinking of every possible alternative to turn an income to provide for myself.

They were having open auditions so I decided to go ahead and audition. Here's where the story gets interesting and it brought on a major subject of attention for me.

Let me set the stage. I have always through the years lead a super healthy lifestyle. I never had drunk alcohol or smoked or anything for my entire life. I've been a vegetarian for most of it, give or take a few chick-fi-let meals on and off through the years. I have also consistently worked out either jogging, weight lifting, or yoga. I am really healthy, and I proved to myself that all my living the good life really did pay off big dividends.

I went to the audition which is quite rigorous. The audition consists of swimming the length of four football fields in under eleven minutes, breath hold, underwater comfortability, gracefulness, interview skills, and a few other things.

Now, remember, The day I went to audition I was 45 years old at the time and the last audition I had was when I was 17. The park was filled with over 75 women/girls from ages 18 and up. There wasn't an age limit.
The biggest part of the audition is the swimming endurance of four football fields within the time limit. The reason they give this first is that it truly weeds out the ones that can't handle the endurance levels.

I want to preface something about the audition. I had not practiced for decades to be able to swim the four football fields and yet, I beat out over 75 girls. I know for me it was because of the many years I have worked consistently on my apnea skills, swimming endurance, practices and that I've been a really healthy person for my entire life. Many of those girls were in there early teens and they were falling out left and right. To give you an idea of how many actually made it through all the tests and got an interview was 12. I was among the 12. I didn't actually end up getting hired that day because I truly think I had a negative energetic vibration that I was too old for the job. I believe in Law of Attraction and I had been consistently holding that thought. If I were to have been sending out positive energy about my age, I would have gotten the job. I was overqualified and I knew it.

So all in all, I believe that its sort of like that old saying or analogy about the law of the harvest. Many times people can fake a lot of things, but when push comes to shove you can only go so far. We truly do reap what we've sewn.

I think the girls that didn't get the job as a mermaid, was because they didn't have endurance mentally nor physically. They wanted the job as a mermaid for the glitz and glamour of it all. They didn't think too much about how hard the training was going to be and that they weren't going to just automatically get to be called a mermaid and get the accolades right out of the gate.

I remember when I worked there when I was 17 and we would hire more mermaids, and because they didn't get to be "mermaids" right away, they'd either quit or get fired. They wanted the name of being a mermaid but didn't think about all the work and training it would take behind the scenes. I was a trainee for a year and a half before the public ever saw my face once.

My take-home value for this post is that it will always pay off to train in life by getting experience.

I used to have the limiting mindset as I'd see the rise of others and I didn't get it. I'd get pissed that someone else was climbing higher or faster than me. So in order to make myself feel better, I would think, "they got by on someone else's merits that's why they are succeeding, they know someone with a name of importance or someone used money to leverage them." They didn't work hard enough in my opinion. It'd drive me batshit crazy until I had that audition and I realized a profound thing. I had a paradigm shift that day.  I learned that it's all about the dip, meaning when it gets extremely difficult the game changers stay in the game. They don't stop when shit gets hard. They are working on those days when others are shopping or taking a day at the beach instead of training and practice. They go through the dip, and that's what separates the successful ones from the quitters. The other thing that I have realized is if we can change the conditioned limiting beliefs from childhood, we would realize were all successors.
Too often we just don't know it until we are put up against something that will determine our inner strength and grit. There may be people getting ahead and the ones that do, have earned it. We may not see their efforts, but we aren't with them every day either. no one stays on top forever unless they are constantly striving and allowing the universe to work in their favor. It has everything to do with our vibrational energy. If you line up your energy you will be among the top 10% of successful people also. The universe is in all our favor, and the only one stopping us from getting what we want is OURSELVES.

We all have the capacity to have all that we desire. It really has everything to do with the law of attraction. What are you vibrating at with regards to money or success?
Yours til my next swim, Raquel

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Thank you so much for swimming by.

The Story Of How The Tale Of MerryMaid Scarlette Rose Came To Be- Part 2

Thursday, May 17, 2018
Hello Sweet Darlings,
Let's continue the tale of how my storybook came to be, shall we? Might you pour some tea and let's continue our visit? Today my tea of choice is green tea. {smile} I am in need of a little natural caffeine kick, so tea should most assuredly set me right. {If you haven't read part 1, start there first}.
Me and my mother Deborah
As I began to actually buy into my self-worth and confidence, I was reminded of so many particulars. Those of my childhood and how my mother was constant in her approval and encouragement to instill in me that I was surely capable of anything I truly desired to be and do. The memories began to flood my mind with regards to my upbringing and faith in myself.

I am not quite sure if it's a genetic trait that Carter's hold dating back to England, but I have always taken pride in being a Carter. There was always something about my family that was instilled in me as young as I can remember that I knew I was "SOMEONE." A constantly quoted phrase that was heard is, "Don't you know who you are Raquel? You're the best because you are a Carter!"
Now, mind you when I was a young little strawberry-haired freckle-faced girl, I was all about believing in myself. I sincerely thought I was the most spectacular girl ever to be born. I'm not sure if it came from me being very different from my entire/extended family, being the only redhead, or if it's because I was the only little girl in a slew of boys.

Regardless, I knew I was special.

I have a ton of ideas in my head for many books, but this was actually going to be a real thing. No more talk about writing a book, it was game on. I had never written a book before. I knew I loved the charming sense of whimsy to Beatrix Potters books and I also loved that she drew animals, with clothes on, no less and that her paintings weren't extremely detailed. I really liked the simplicity of her drawings. So what does every artist do? They steal. They steal from this artist and that artist, take from here, and there, and make something all their very own. I love this snippet from the book 'Steal Like An Artist' by Austin Kleon.
Your job is to collect good ideas. The more good ideas you collect, the more you can choose from to be influenced by.

"Steal from anywhere that resonates with inspiration or fuels your imagination. Devour old films, new films, music, books, paintings, photographs, poems, dreams, random conversations, architecture, bridges, street signs, trees, clouds, bodies of water, light, and shadows. Select only things to steal from that speak directly to your soul. If you do this, your work {and theft} will be authentic. ~Jim Jarmusch

I had been painting little paintings and selling them in my Etsy shop for a while at this point, so I was perfecting the look I was going for. I still had the book in the back of my mind, but I wanted my stories to really capture that whole vibe of Beatrix, and I mean really feel like if she came back to earth reincarnated, what would her stories be. I wanted to embody her work. I have heard so many artists talk about how much their art is JUST like Beatrix's. I wanted my books to literally be so reminiscent people would think to themselves, "this is Beatrix Potter reincarnated." I believe in the Law Of Attraction, and spirit guides so strongly that I spiritually embodied Beatrix Potter and Tasha Tudor while painting and writing The Tale of MerryMaid Scarlette Rose. I asked for their guided hands while painting and their imagination for the words as to how the story should unfold.
You can hear those souls from beyond the veil if you'll sincerely listen for them, and expect to hear them. I softly listened to Tasha while I was drawing the faces of the little merry's. All of those that know Beatrix, know she couldn't stand to draw people. She didn't think she was very good at drawing people and I think that's why she loved drawing animals so much.

Now, I sat on the first story for over 7 months. I said I was going to write a book, but it was not coming to me at all. I know from practicing the Law of Attraction, to not force anything, so I just kept relaxed and knew the time would come and when it did I'd write at massive speed.

That's exactly what happened. I was sleeping one evening and at 1:30 a.m. I woke straight up out of bed and wrote the entire story in 2 hours. I then put it away for a few more months and figured the same thing would happen when it was time to paint the illustrations. and it did, The same exact way. It was so interesting too because I was feeling a constant nudging for about 3 weeks after I would meditate that I must finish the book... I must finish the book...
That's the most glorious thing about listening to inspired action when doing anything. The less efforting we put into something the easier it is. I was listening to Abraham Hicks one day and I had heard a workshop about writers several times beforehand but on this particular day, I really heard the words so clearly. If you want to know how to get a book into the universe, write another one and then another one. I have 2 more books in the works. "The Tale of Patsy Violet" is about a little red bird that wears high heels, a bonnet and apron and she teaches her baby birds about death in the loveliest way and The Tale of Sybrena Sparrow which is about a sweet and loving friendship.
If I have anything to gift you in kind from this post, its to make your dreams come true, all you have to do is to truly LOVE YOURSELF and to BELIEVE IN YOURSELF. Do not ever allow anyone to ever tell you that what you dream of cannot be done. If you can believe it, you CAN achieve it! I am living proof.

Do you have a dream that you'd like to fulfill? Have you read my about me page? Swim here to find out about my tale... Also, I'd love it if you signed up for my newsletter "The Current"
It's on the sidebar at the top, if you bypassed the pop-up form.

Thank you so much. I will only send the loveliest messages in a bottle, and you can fully trust I'll keep your email as only a Mermaid does, in the sand of secrets.

The Story Of How The Tale Of MerryMaid Scarlette Rose Came To Be- Part 1

Tuesday, May 15, 2018
Hello darlings,

How are you? I hope you're doing well.
Perhaps pour yourself a cup of tea and let's chat, shall we? My choice of tea for today is lavender and rose, just in case you wanted to know that{smile}.
 Today I thought I'd begin my little tale of how my storybook The Tale Of MerryMaid Scarlette Rose® came to be.

I'd also like to share with you some of the details. I think personally I love hearing the little-sorted increments of how other authors/illustrators created their dear gems.
I was marinating several things over the weekend in preparation to begin this series and it dawned on me how very much I am not privy to write or make things about myself. As I've worked on my business, author campaign, this blog, and putting myself out into the world as an author and illustrator I've realized how uncomfortable it has made me, it has been an adjustment for sure. I've never had particulars be about me per se, and it's taking some getting used to.

I have long been a writer. As a little girl, I've been creating little stories as far back as I can recall. I was the little red-head that wore long dresses and had pen pals in elementary school. My mother made sure I was fully equipped with writing utensils at all times. I even went many years in middle and high school where I wore a pencil in my hair because I was constantly jotting or sketching things.

In my about page you've read that I have loved Beatrix Potter since childhood. It's true... I also read the stories to my children all throughout their lives as well. There was something I found calming and charming about the stories. Honestly, they don't have a daunting amount of depth to them, and perhaps that's the adoring appeal. A story that's light-hearted but with also a bit of whimsy. Now that my friends is my cup of tea! I should like to stay determined to always live life with rose colored glasses on. I think that's the allure of children's fairytales, they take us to places in our imagination where dreaming is allowed, actually preferred.
After my divorce was final, and I was couch surfing at my parents, living out of my two suitcases, I had also brought my little palette of paints, 2 Walmart brushes, a pencil and an eraser. To this day, I keep them in my purse. They have become a bit of a comfort to me, like a lovely old familiar friend.

While I was married I had become so conditioned out of my belief in myself, having turned down a four-year art scholarship, and having put away painting for so long I had forgotten I could even draw much less paint.

I was in such a state of pain while going through my divorce, missing my children madly, and feeling like everyone was trying to tell me what they thought I should do, I took up walking. I would walk to the nearest waterhole where I'd dream and sketch.

I figured that if all the years of me telling my children that there is nothing they cannot be and that dreams do come true, I might take my own advice.

It takes a little time to actually gather one's style. I looked at the paintings of my favorite watercolorists and took some ideas from them and then kept reworking my images to look the way I liked. My paintings have an old world look to them, but also a look of solemn seriousness, and that pretty much describes me to a T. My painting style is very much my own. I am nowhere near where I desire to be, but I have learned not to ever wait on things. I have realized, I must be a doer, not a talker.

Nowadays, I'm not afraid to start anything. I go head first, even though I know I'll get lots of air bubbles and rise to the top over and over again, and I don't care one single bit. That's the only way we learn is to keep diving back into the water. That's what losing everything has taught me, to be fearless. Once you've literally lost everything, no one can take anything from you, not your dreams and especially not your talents. If you take nothing from this post but that, I feel I've done my job.

After setting up my new facebook page and new social media platforms, I tried to continuously put out little motivational sayings and quotes to inspire others, and I'll be completely honest, I did it for myself mostly at first. I was having to be my own cheerleader, so I needed all the positivity and happiness I could conjure up.

As time went on people would respond to some of my posts and say that I should write a story. I had never told anyone that I had longed to write stories since I was a little girl, so I took the compliments in stride. Throughout the next year, I started thinking, yeah I should write a book. I'd then set the dream aside because when I mentioned it to a few friends they actually weren't super supportive to me. They said things like, "You have to get a publishing company, how are you planning to do that? It's not easy to write books and actually have them sell, your art isn't good enough yet for a book. etc."

I was still so low in my self-worth journey at the time that I would become so frustrated at my struggles and say in my mind to hell with it. I knew deeply though that if I had enough faith I could probably do it, I let those thoughts marinate in my soul and began to dream about being an author but not telling anyone verbally anymore. They seemed to dampen my spirits and I just got plain sick and tired of it.  I have had decades of lacking self-confidence to weed through and build back up and it became daunting to think about a book. I'd once again lay the idea aside because to some degree I felt like it was out of reach. Once again, a running theme is that I'd listen to other people tell me I wasn't capable, and I listened to them.

Fast forward to about 6 months later and I'm once again suggested a video from Gary Vaynerchuk. Something he said that day made a light go off in my head and I haven't looked back since.
If you have ever seen Gary's videos, he straight up and has no quorums about telling it like it is. I had seen him about 3 years prior and immediately turned him off because, to be honest, I thought that he was an arrogant ass. Actually, he rubbed me majorly the wrong way. Today I know why this is. I had a victim mentality, and never in a million years would I have pegged myself for being a victim. In the back of my mind, I had an attitude of entitlement. The day I recognized this about myself was like the blinders fell from my eyes. I haven't been the same since and It's been the best gift that man, a stranger... has ever given me. I should like to shake his hand one day and thank him personally for setting me a foot on my journey as a children's published author.

To be cont'd...

Always Begin With Your Truth {A Mermaid Finds Her Voice}

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

I have hesitated in writing this post for over six months. My reason for this was a little embarrassment. The other reason I have decided to now write it is pure, authentic transparency. And since transparency seems to be my middle name lately, here we go.

I'll paint myself out of the embarrassment and into a place of peace. You just watch. {smile}

A place of bringing this post-full-circle, to reach out from this computer screen and let you each try to visualize with me a world I love living in.

Try as I might, I can't help but always see things the way an artist does. My whole life has been this way. I see the oil-stained heart in the pavement on my morning jog. I see the broken branch from a hawk as a sign that God heard me talking. Or the batch of bunnies on the hill in front of Marshall's department store as a sign from the morning of, when I asked God to show me I was on the right path with my art and authorship. I also see the beauty in the experience of being served up a big plate of truth from the universe as a way to further my expansion of self-worth and self-love. 
I see the beauty in everything, for everyone and every single experience. I am so appreciative of this delightful quality. It has served me well. I should like to pass it on to you.

I always preface it'll probably take me a right 2000 words to bring this post home, but I want my posts to really cause some deep thinking for you. I'm here for the pretty pictures, and I'm also here for the pleasure of us to fully comprehend that we can all create a life we truly love if we can see things always as a positive.

About six months ago, I had this gal that I was speaking with over tea, and I considered her somewhat of a friend. She had found one of my youtube videos and reached out to me.
We got to the point of talking on a pretty regular basis. One particular day I was telling her in detail of how I was feeling a little pressure from the gardener that I might need to go out and get a "REAL" job. So I thought of a brilliant idea. (I mean really petty thought, but who's judging... it's okay... really.)

I said to my friend jokingly, "I should see how much he really wants me to go out and get a job by going to Hooters. Then I bet he'll change his tune." Now kids, learn from me here... Do not do what I did. It was utterly ridiculous and a complete waste of time.

Okay so, my friend said laughingly, "hahaha... you should totally go there and pretend to get a job and see how much your husband wants you to work then.  He'll get so irritated and jealous that he'll tell you no way!"

I dolled myself up cute, drove to Hooters and got an interview with the manager, John. I was to call John back the following morning, and he would talk with the other manager and put me on a shift. "Wait! What! Hey now... this was supposed to be a joke. I was just trying to get some attention from my husband. My part of the plan was not to literally land the job on site."

That whole thing ended up backfiring on me, but it also taught me some precious lessons that I still needed to learn about myself and a few that I want to share with you. The gardener was all for me working at Hooters. I was quite upset about that, or so I thought that was the reason for my upset. I was actually upset with myself. I had once again betrayed myself for another person. Isn't that really why we get upset and blame other people. It really has nothing to do with them. It has to do with us. It has to do with our personal betrayal of self, and that will always feel excruciatingly painful. So what we tend to do by default is to look for the first person to blame for our negative feelings. That's a hard pill for so many people to swallow. I had no one to blame, even though I wanted to blame 'said friend' it wasn't her fault, and it wasn't the gardener's fault I actually got the job nor was it his fault that I wasn't speaking my truth about working at an outside job. This was all on me. It was time for me to take accountability.

It was once again about Raquel. Why? Because I wasn't listening to my inner voice. I wasn't sharing with my husband my true feelings. I wasn't voicing my authentic truth. I don't think I'm alone in this. How many of us do this? I still needed some fine-tuning with regards to self-worth, this became very apparent.
After my husband came home from work, I sat down with him and voiced my truth. I said, " I am not going to work outside the home. I am going to buckle down and make my side hustle an all-day job. Becoming an author/painter/ blogger will be my full-time position. I'm giving myself until the end of this year." Now, why couldn't I have just said that to him in the beginning?

Why do we listen to someone else instead of our own inner being; our gut? And why did I seek out attention and try to make my point of not wanting to work outside the home by wasting an entire day of trivial fodder at Hooters instead of going straight to the gardener and voice what I felt? I knew deep down we would come to a resolution.

That big ol' scary word FEAR was the reason I didn't say anything. This is where I was able to use this experience to my benefit.

I have thought back to that gal that I thought was my friend, and now I know why she appeared in my life for that moment in time. She was there to teach me things. I learned to never, ever listen to another person with regards to what's best for my life, not even on occasion. I am so sure of this now, and I will never ask for the opinion of someone when it comes to my life and affairs. Now some may think that's not wise, but I want to tell you all the reasons for this being the smartest thing you'll ever read.

We are too often convinced, conjured and manipulated into believing something someone else says is best for our lives, and we long-abandon ourselves in the process. I can't tell you how many times when family, friends, relatives, bishops, pastors, social media, all told me what they thought I needed to do. I needed to go to therapy. I needed to get some outside help. I needed counselling, I needed to go to marriage counselling. I needed medication. I needed to listen to them because they loved and cared for me. If I were to listen to the advice of another and what's best for my life, I would have felt like that was just another compromise. I would've compromised my truth. That was the reason I was so unhappy for so long in the first place. I was never doing that again. Here's what happens when we don't listen to people tell us what we need to do. They get mad and degenerate and seemingly dismissive of us. But let me tell you what also happens if you were to listen to the person. You end up resenting the hand that fed you, and you will eventually bite that hand. Now if you've ever been through this, you know exactly what I'm talking about. No need for me to explain anymore.
I do not believe in compromise at all. This is shocking to many when I reveal my opinion about a settlement. Let me explain what compromise does to a person over time. Over time to compromise your inner truth, as you and I know it, causes a deep sense of resentment towards others.

Ultimately in every relationship, there is a rescuer and a taker if you hooked up with your significant other out of alignment, which happens more frequently than you realize. When this occurs, what eventually happens in a rescuer/taker relationship the one will always outweigh the other over time. (I want to preface this only happens when you meet up and both of you arent whole by yourself)

Basically, what I heard and thank goodness never listened to was, "Raquel, you don't know what's right for your life. We know better than you. You are wrong, and we are right."

Now that doesn't mean that's what any of them said, but the clear indicator for me that what I felt inside my heart, I have learned to listen. I rarely second-guess myself anymore.

I want to inspire women to believe and know that they can make the right decisions for their own lives. We as women have especially been conditioned to distrust ourselves and choices, to discount our true feelings, to blame the feelings and emotions on some 'THING"... "Oh she's having a breakdown, shes menstrual, she's a bitch, she's lost her mind, and my favourite, she's crazy."

These implications are rampant in society today. I want to inspire women to take responsibility for their lives and to really know deep within that they can trust themselves. The decisions that women make for themselves is and will always be the perfect, most correct decision for their particular life.

Have you ever comprised your inner truth? What'd you do to ultimately make it right for yourself?

Most affably yours til my next swim, Raquel