How can our trauma be our biggest blessing?
Because it shapes us. It makes us who we are. It sets us down a path to learn all of our greatest life lessons.
And the deeper we go, the higher we rise, but only if we are ready to take personal responsibility for our present and future.
Are you a ready for some reality TV gossip? I wanted to share with you a little about my "hero's journey". Get the popcorn and enjoy.
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Do you ever feel like you're outgrowing alcohol, that you are longing for a deeper connection to life? If alcohol is keeping you playing small and feels like the one area, you just can't figure out you are in the right place. Hi, my name is Mary Wagstaff. I'm a Holistic alcohol coach who ended a 20 year relationship to alcohol without labels, counting days or ever making excuses. Now I help powerful women just like you eliminate their desire to drink on their own terms. In this podcast, we will explore the revolutionary approach of my proven five shifts process that gets alcohol out of your way by breaking all of the rules and the profound experience that it is to rediscover who you are on the other side of alcohol. I am so thrilled to be your guide. Welcome to your journey of awakening. Welcome back to the show my beautiful listeners. Thanks so much for being here for another episode. Welcome to the circle, if you are new you are in for such a treat being here, make sure that at least for the last 30 days, you go back and listen to all of the episodes, because they are going to transform the way that you think about what it means to no longer want to drink. And the more I do this work, the more I realize that that's really just the biggest problem I probably say that a lot. The more I do this work the more I realize this, you know data because it's it's just such an awakening that we think not drinking is not normal. But you heard it here today first folks, not drinking is normal. It is you it is your your you who you are authentically uniquely aligned in life with the emotions that show up for you. Right and, and through the process of holistic alcohol coaching, we really mitigate a lot of those emotions, we really solve those emotions by you becoming the solution and how you view and how you interpret the world. And I was just talking to a client about what one of the questions that we ask a lot in the program is how is it better? So when someone comes on a call, we always start with a positive what results did you get this week? What what new awarenesses did you have, and it's always really positive and re and we want to reinforce we never want to skip over the new the new times when you would normally be drinking, because we really want to reinforce why it's better. And so that belief that like it won't be fun, I'll be boring, blah, blah, blah. Like all of those things. We disprove all of them, because they're just thoughts are not facts. So one of the things was that I only had one drink, like not one alcoholic drink by yours, like literally only bought one drink because I was aware and alert and conscious. And you know normally where you have 234 10 Right, whatever it is. And it's so funny because I always think about that, you know, sitting in drinking, you're like downing a six pack of kombucha in one sitting. But we know we don't bat an eyelash when we think about drinking an entire bottle of wine or people drink like a six pack of beer or you know, a half a bottle of bourbon or whatever it is. But you would never just sit there like chugging. I mean, even when I have like some soda waters in the house or whatever, you know, I'm not, I'm not just sitting down at dinner at one night, having three soda waters in a row or anything like that. When if you are that's fine, there's no judgment. But typically, when we're having a beverage we like enjoy it. We have one if I have a cow, I have a cow. I do have a couple of teas in the morning. And so there's that. But that's just kind of like my morning flow is I wake up and I just sit with my my monta and I you know, drink on it for a while and into like probably my first call. So today is going to be a special day I'm going to tell you all about me because I talk a lot about you and I talk a lot about your brain. And on the show I have shared about my journey of awakening as far as kind of my awakening to the divine feminine. And I share that earlier in the 30 day podcast takeover about my story and how it was really this shift of perspective that seeing what was once felt like this void and like full of angst and anxiety of the future without alcohol. When I started really being in the process of understanding my own cycles and rhythms on a day to day and really living in relationship to more to the Earth more More in relationship to befriending my emotions. And the and shifting the perspective of using the five shifts, which is what I teach my clients. There was this awakening inside of me that filled the void. It was just like the answer to what felt like a void was everything that was dormant inside of me. And I was a bearing all the best parts of me. And I was also and then, and then I could see possibility like I could see all like it built my confidence and my connection to myself that that void just became infinite possibility of Oh, my gosh, all of these things that I have had yet to experience. And that is something else that people really love about this program is it isn't just about not drinking, right, it's the before, during and after of who are you becoming, uncovering, because that future, you know, you're in so much pain, and you're so focused on the pain, and we handle all of the pain. But when people think about the future in the void, it's just this emptiness that feels even just as scary or more scary. So I don't just leave you hanging, right? It's like awakening inside of you who you are becoming all of the best parts of you that you've been missing out on your dreams, your unmet desires, really examining your why just things that you've never asked yourself, and unlocking the wisdom, unlocking the wisdom inside of you that actually already has all the answers. But you know, from our normal day to day and our traditional education system, we're just not guided to that deep self inquiry. So today, I wanted to tell you a little bit about me things that you know, I share a lot about about some of the stuff that I do, but things that you don't know about me and I and I and then we're gonna go into kind of like, my, my moment of trauma a little bit, right, which I say lightly, because I can laugh about it myself. It's my own story. So I can laugh about it. And hopefully, it'll just give you a little bit of a different shift of perspective of how you might be viewing things of your past and are you still letting your past rule your future. So ever since I was a little girl, I loved music, I love singing. For about the first five years of my life, four years of my life, it was just me and my mom I had my mom was a younger mother. She was 20 when she had me. And I was very close with my maternal grandparents, they watched me a lot. And they really loved me and cared for me i until the day that they both passed, I would still go spend the weekends with my grandma and I would go play bingo with her. And my papa was definitely probably the most predominant, really like male figure from a young age in my life. And the lovely human who I call dad. He was around in those first four years. Kind of like, you know, there as a good guy, I called dad, but he didn't live with us. And I didn't know any different. And then when I was four, they got married. And about a year like six months later, I had two beautiful twin sisters. So they're five years I was five when they were born. So they're five years younger than me. And yeah, my mom always was She was my best friend. We were very close or I was her right hand and I really helped her a lot with my sisters when they were growing up. But we used to go in her car and we would blare blast like George Michael and Madonna and we would sing and she used to let me take these mental health days she would call me she would let me call them and you know, take off of school and the days that I didn't want to go I never really loved school I remember going to my first day of kindergarten or was one of my first days of kindergarten and seeing everyone coloring apples and just thinking how awfully boring that sounded. So there was a lot of fighting with me from a young age my mother having to like literally chase me around the house to get on the bus because I also was pretty codependent with her and didn't want to leave her side. So I would you know, I met with memorize songs to all of the musicals I love musicals The Wizard of Oz and like the sound of music and the King and I and so I was in choir from third grade all the way until I was in college. So I've always just like been in love with music. I did some dancing some dance lessons when I was younger as well. And that's really carried me all the way till the present moment till now I am a novice but I play the ukulele I make little songs. I'm always singing Sister Circle songs when I host sister circles and music and dance and movement has really been something that has that brings me into the present moment and can shift my vibration very quickly. Right? It's an embodiment practice that carries and resets the vibration that we were once in and helps us harmonize into a different frequency. So music alone and dance is always such a beautiful way to engage with just a medicine that we are innately given, right? It's the universal language of sound, and vibration doesn't even matter if you know the language of a song, you can hear it. And I actually have a video about this in my course. That just talks about engaging with music in some way. And so, as I, as I journeyed through my, through my young adolescent years, my parents separated and then divorced when I was about 10 years old. So then it was, my mother was then really a single mother of three, three girls, and we would spend, you know, like, every other weekend with my dad. But it was really, you know, I really had this fondness for her and was and was very close with her. I did excel in school. And up until we I entered high school, I was, you know, had kind of been in putting in some advanced math and, and science classes, and then high school came, and everything kind of shifted for me. I, this is like the Dunder the moment. So I had my parents had been separated, and my mother had dated, you know, on and off for dinner with different people. And there was this man who she had been dating that I knew as a family friend, like I had known of him. And there had been times in my life that I questioned who, like, if my dad was my real dad, like, I remember questioning this when I was very young, because he didn't look like me, I there was like a thing with my name. Or when I went to school, I didn't have his last name. And it was, you know, there was just like, some open ended questions. And it was kind of glossed over. And really, the answer was, yes, this is your dad. And so, my grandmother, my mom sat me down one day and exposed to me the truth of my origins. And this man that she was dating turns out to be my biological father. And at this point, I'm 13 years old. I had already started smoking pot at that point, which in retrospect, is seems so wild to me to be having altering my mind in this way to such a degree at such a young age before my brain is fully developed. So it was definitely something from that moment, I used as a coping tool as a way to escape as a way to kind of check out from this confusion that I was having why I started it, I think was out of curiosity. Um, you know, wanting to hang out with maybe a certain certain people, and just my natural via my natural curiosity of, of experiencing a different state of consciousness, which I think is a very normal, normal human thing. And so, so this information comes to me and my, you know, I am very upset and I had kind of already known that someone had met my biological data friend of mine, and it said to me, is that your daddy looks exactly like you and he looked, we will look very much alike and but the biggest thing that had come flooding into my, you know, my consciousness and really was in my emotions was betrayal. And I Matthew always laughs That makes I was talking about betrayal. But being so close to my mother, my grandmother, my the man that I call dad, who is my dad, his family, my sister's, like, everyone, I don't believe my sisters knew, but like everyone else that knew besides me. And this was, you know, a challenging thing. This is like this there. And it really reminds me of my transition with alcohol. Because when I awoke in from alcohol, it really was like the lights turned on that I was exposed to this big lie that I had been telling myself. And so that's why I think that there's such a grieving there can be such a grieving process with alcohol and almost an unwillingness to admit the truth. Right. It's like how can this be I've realized this thing has, you know, been such a part of my life, like how can it be that it's that it's not working anymore and you feel like there's void. So, it was just this deep embarrassment and shame and heartache, right? It's like, oh my gosh, all these people I've spent all this time with have known this thing all along except for me, like, sounds awful. I'm sure so many people have gone through this with adoption and, and all the things. And I did get along well with my biological dad. And but that relationship went on for about a year and a half and ended and then so kind of did my relationship with him, which turns out to be and the reason I'm really telling you the story is because I truly believe the things that sometimes feel like the biggest tragedies in our life are the biggest blessings. And I believe that my sole family is my family that I have through my dad's side of the family, what's not like biologically my paternal side of the family, but my my, my dad's side of the family, my grandmother and her twin sister, my dad's mother and sister are named Margaret and Mary. And that's my name. And I was named after my great grandmother, my maternal grandmother, great grandmother. And I always thought that was such a cool coincidence, ever since I was really little how they share I shared the same name as them. And they're this beautiful, close knit, celebratory open minded family that just love and accept and they have deep devotion and Catholic roots. But you know, they're, they're like liberal Catholics in whatever way that means. I mean, that doesn't mean anything to me now. But, but just the acceptance of, of everyone coming in to be at the table. And there was always gatherings on Sundays after church and holidays and celebrations. And I felt like such a part of that family. And so it really hurt, but there was never any, it was all in my own head, no one else felt any differently about it than like they had felt before. And no one even like, knew that this big thing was being exposed to me at this time. And the other reason that I really look at this is such a blessing to me now, right? I mean, at the time, I kind of allowed it allowed myself to be a victim. I mean, I was young, I was an adolescent. So it was just kind of bad timing anyway, where I was already figuring my life out, and just in my angst and my existential despair. But as I got older, you know, I was exposed, my, my maternal side of the family was Catholic as well, but I was exposed more so to the church, to the Divine Mother, to the rosary to the sacred. And although it very specifically, it didn't resonate with me in the likes, the teachings and kind of the self, the ceremonial part of it, I, it really was a triggering for me of my devotion and of what I was here to do that I was here to lead a life through the lens of devotion and ceremony and ritual, and through my connection to my own inner self, my own inner knowing my own inner wisdom, and I was connecting to the Divine to God goddess to, to source and whatever way that one expresses that on their own. And, and then like my singing and my in my reciting and my, like love for words, just really all came together. And then I you know, and then like, we fast forward to the story that I shared about the awakening of the priestess path. And then like, I was like, Oh, wow, like now I know, because all I ever saw was a man on the altar, right to share the story, to share the homily, to share the sacred vows. And I knew then that there was just something that I hadn't been taught that there was an old way, that was the way. And there's so much here now that I'm telling you the story that is really just such a metaphor is that that there's so much in the unseen, and not just the unseen realms of like the spirit world, but so much that that is just not exposed to us. That's possible. We have never lived in a time of feminine leadership ever. We've never had a female president. And even if we did the whole our whole government is based on masculine principles. Right and like, again, I always have to qualify this but it's not shaming the masculine. But there is a wounded masculine, there is a power over model and when we don't know what it would be like to have not female leadership, but feminine leadership, we have no clue there's a whole other side of the coin that just doesn't even exist in our in our reality now, I believe that there was that this did exist in in more and more presence many many years ago. And this is really the the reclamation of the priestess path and the reclamation of The Goddess, the goddess rising. And so many years, there was resentment, there was hate, there was anger. And I do think that in many ways, it did shift the relationship that I had with my mother. But now and for many years now, I have known through this work of coaching of mindfulness of mindset, because my deep philosophy of meta is loving kindness. We don't hate haters. Right. And I'm not saying that my mother was a hater, but it's like, she was doing the best she knew how and she was actually was very young, she was actually guided by a higher like a priest to, to just say that this was the family that they were having. And to not let me know, because they were starting a new family. And as a parent, now I really I really trust that there was no no like, Mal intentions, right? It was all very honorable. And with the best intention, and what I know now about that person, my biological father, and even the family that I would have grown up with, like, again, all like amazing souls in their own right. But it's like, I was much better off where I was. And the the path that was laid out in front of me and the people that influenced me and the support that I still have for my dad and the grandfather that he has to am and is just all very intentional. It was all by divine design, I truly believe that. So there are no mistakes. And I could let that be a wound to be a victim to you if I just chose to. But it's not worth it. There's no reason for it. I'm in control of my present, I'm in control of my future I love. I love my dad, I love my mom, and I am healthy. I am here and like Who fucking cares, right? And I've had people tell me like, you should be in therapy about this. And I'm like, why? I don't I'm like, oh, so over it. My mom's gonna be my mom. And the more I take control of my expectations about her, then I feel better. Like I can like we don't have to we Why do we have expectations for anyone? There's no rulebook, parents aren't supposed to be a certain way. We decide that we have like these stories that we tell ourselves, we see it mirrored on in like fake TV, on reality shows or whatever. Right? So when you're having an expectation of how someone should be. Now, of course, there's neglect and there's abuse. And there's these things that can really harm someone and that, you know, people can't go back though, right? They can only go forward. So are you. You know, in my life, it's like, do I want to be angry? If I'm angry, who is doing who who is doing a disservice to me. That's it. Right? So I wouldn't be here today. If it wasn't for that. I truly believe that. And there was a lot in there. You know, my dad was the one that taught me how to bartend he owned two bars. That was like kind of a way we bonded. And I worked with him at a couple of hotels where he bar attended and I waited tables. I worked with him at a restaurant. And you know, it was some of our closest times together. And, you know, but now I'm just still me. And that was then and it was like no one's worse for the wear. He still drinks he's fine with it. He knows I didn't drink he's fine with it. Everything's great. Like nothing. No one else has control over my future but me and no one else has control over a year. Are future but you? So let the story just be an inspiration about what's possible. Where are you holding on to regret and shame. Right. So, fast forward a little bit, I will just finish telling you a little bit more about myself. That definitely threw me through for a tizzy in my adolescent years for sure. I wanted nothing to do with high school, I started not doing great in school, I kept smoking pot, I was experimenting with other drugs. And I ended up leaving school what would have been my senior year, my mother was a huge advocate for me to support me during that transition, she really did. And I went through a lot of chronic depression, I was on medication for a little bit. And I was homeschooled in 10th grade. And my junior year, I just didn't really show up to school at all, I was kind of here and there. And I dropped out, I dropped out of school, and I was able to get my GED. And then I was able to enroll in our community college and my senior year. I remember I was telling Matthew about this the other day, I remember going to school when there will be a substitute teacher. And always the boys in school, they were just so nasty. And we we started talking about this because Emmet was talking about a substitute. And he said, always treat this substitute amazing. They have the worst job ever. They're coming in, and it's like, no one's used to them. And everyone's so nasty. And I just remember being in school with these brilliant, I may have even shared this on the show. But I just remember being at school, he's really brilliant teachers and learning about literature and, and thinking like, I want to be here to learn from this person that has like a real interest in the subject that they're teaching me. And this is such a waste of my time. I hate these people, I don't want to be around them. I was exploring, like sexuality. Like all the things I have my own issues to deal with. This is the last thing I wanted to deal with, right. And so my mother really supported me in leaving. And then I had to take a couple of non credited classes and my community college and then I went on to our University and graduated and I was the first person in our family to graduate with a bachelor's degree. And yeah, I studied resilience and coping and human development, which is everything I integrate into the work that I do in social work. And definitely talking about some about addiction, although I what I know now is that the research is very narrow. And there's so many more implications to this whole, really just the social implications, especially to the relationship to alcohol that's really goes on researched. It was amazing. And my very, very, very first taste of holistic wellness came from an amazing woman. Her name was Ana de Andrea. And she taught a course called Holistic Health. And she was a healer. And she was a Reiki practitioner. And she did not work at the school. But the holistic health class was surprisingly even then, I mean, this is 23 years ago, was an elective, you could take in the nursing program at the community college, which I was not in but I could I was not in the nursing program, but I could take this elective and she taught us about flower essence about breath work about yoga, and you know, just energetics of food and I was in love. So I've met these teachers along my way in this path that had been laid out for me now had that one thing been different, right had my mother either a I had I been exposed to my biological father b She ended up with that person, everything else would have been different. And I met these beautiful teachers along the way. And my mother had exposed me to fitness at a very young age. So I would always go to the gym with her and so just kind of having that taste of of fitness and alternative lifestyle was really what turned me on to yoga and then the rest is history. My friend you're hearing it I'm here. Nothing's gonna keep me down and nothing has to keep you down. And so it's a culmination of my deep experience and the wisdom that I've allowed myself to expose and embrace and claim and that I continue to tap into right like I I still have stuff. I'm still growing. I'm growing a business. I'm raising a son. I'm figuring out where I want to live. And I'm here, I'm in the journey. But nothing throws me so deeply for a loop that I just give up. I just don't quit anymore. It's not an option. It's intentional. If I want to change something, I change it, but it's intentional. So, welcome to me, I wanted to share this with you, I want you to know a little bit about who I am and my journey and how I got here, I do not talk to that person, I'm pretty sure he actually might be in jail. I don't know. I think my mom probably knows a little bit more about things through his family and like Facebook, but I don't care. I don't know. I've got a family. They're lovely. I'm going to see my dad and my sisters for Thanksgiving. I haven't seen them in three years, and my niece and nephew, and I am so excited to hug them. I cannot wait. So a big hug to you on this beautiful day. Thank you for listening. And if you have anything you want to share about your takeaway in your experience, from these 30 days, I would love for you to leave a review on Apple podcasts and tell everyone what has shifted in your awareness about this approach. Because I know that you didn't know this was possible that you didn't know there was another way besides the traditional like a recovery model that that not drinking is normal and could be a tool for empowerment. And they wanted to invite you to come to my website, I just updated my website on the coaching page to talk more about my program, and it has a lot in there. I think you're gonna really get a lot out of it. Take away just from the page itself that you could start applying to your life. So come on over Mary Wagstaff coach.com/coaching, there's a couple videos of me in there. And there's some information about more information about what really my one on one coaching program entails. Have an amazing day and so much love to you. Imagine taking the podcast every week to the next level, with achievable goals and an action plan tailored specifically to your needs. Finding personalized support is how you gain control of your destiny. And my private one on one coaching program. Fast Track to freedom from alcohol, you get your own personal cheerleader. That's me every week helping you get clear, stay curious and committed to what matters most versus resigning again to your habitual patterns. Every big change starts with one Next Step. Schedule a complimentary call with the link in the show notes or on my website Mary Wagstaff coach.com to get a new perspective on an old habit