“And heaven will smell like the airport.”
My father was fumbling with his bags, dropping his glasses, and holding up the entrance to the hotel, but the beautiful woman holding the door open for him simply smiled. She had a confident air about her, comfortable in her skin and clothes, happy to be free it seemed, very at home in Alaska. I smiled at her, and the smile that greeted me was a familiar one, one that felt like it belonged to a friend, someone who knew my soul and had bared hers to me as well. I remembered that smile from two years earlier, almost to the day, when I watched it light up the stage in Eugene, Oregon. It belonged to Neko Case.
To explain the full significance of Neko Case holding the door open for me to begin my second adventure in Alaska would take pages and pages full of heartbreak and grief, but the encounter gave me an overall feeling that I am not alone and it will all be okay.
I used to brush off omens, disregard serendipity, and distrust fateful encounters. After my brother died, they felt even less potent. To trust in Fate would mean entertaining the idea that my brother’s death had a purpose, that this tragedy could be something other than completely random and horrific. What sign is there to be read in an otherwise healthy 25-year-old dying of cancer?
None, I said.
None, I still say.
Yet, there I was in Alaska, facing sign after sign after sign that this was exactly where I needed to be exactly when I needed to be there, that my life had led me to this place for a reason. Deja vu hit me everywhere I went, and I dreamt of my future, I saw our cabin in the woods covered in snow long before we woke up to the blanket of white.
I’m not getting a 1-900 number to give you all psychic readings quite yet, but maybe, just maybe, I made this all happen.
Maybe I do control my future after all.
I’m not saying I can stop cancer. I’m not saying I can bend time to my will. I’m not saying I can make it snow. But maybe I can make it rain. Maybe, through simply changing the way I think, I can bring joy, prosperity, and abundance into my life.
Maybe, when you set an intention, what you’re really doing is setting in motion a powerful string of events that all build upon each other, so much so that it feels like something beyond you is in control.
Maybe when you set an intention things do go beyond your control.
What would be so bad about believing?
In God. In Fate. In myself. In my dreams. In the work I create. In the people around me. In muses and Goddesses and magic. In setting intensions and dreaming big. In making things happen not because I “earned” them, but because I wanted them.
What would be so bad about believing the Universe wants me to be happy?
What would be so bad about believing I am worthy?
Of love and acceptance. Of pleasure and joy. Of affluence and influence. Of living an authentic life free of shame. Of loving myself and my body.
I spent last summer in Alaska dreaming dreams as big as the state itself. Returning this Fall, I realized all but one of those dreams had come true. I wasn’t living with the partner I thought I’d marry, life took us separate ways, but every other intention that I set out there in the wilderness had manifested itself into my life.
It wasn’t easy, believing in myself, but it was the only choice I had.
It is the only choice any of us really have. We’re distracted by other shiny, fake choices, by fancy cars and diamond rings, but really the only choice worth making is the choice to believe in yourself, to believe you are worthy of happiness, joy, prosperity, affluence, pleasure, fun, and abundance.
What if there is a God and that God sent you here to enjoy yourself?
What clothes would you wear? What travel would you do? What job would you go after? In what ways would you love more, do more, feel more? What heaven on earth would you create?