Somewhere along the path of my life, I got lost. Actually, I’ve been lost many times. I followed the directions of other people and of the world thinking somehow, they knew my route better than I did. And dear God, I didn’t want to trip, I feared messing up, but trip I did, many times! All of this tripping and falling and stumbling, following the advice of the world, brought me so far away from myself, so very far away…

It’s amazing how I ignored my own intuition for much of my life. I ignored my own voice that was always there, trying to guide me. It would whisper in my ear but I shushed it away and marched on.

July 2, 2015 changed all that. When I was diagnosed with breast cancer, the prospect of death suddenly appeared on my path. I was at a crossroads. Which way to turn?

Cancer kicked my butt with tremendous power so that I fell to the ground with a great thud. It stripped me of my identity and forced me to ask myself, “What do I want to do with my life? Who am I, really?”

Surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation took about a year of my life, but it was also a year where I rediscovered myself, rediscovering the things I enjoyed in my youth. Who knew I loved baking so much? Wow, I actually got to sit on my front porch and just stare at the old knobby oak tree for hours. How lovely! I looked at my bookshelf and noticed how I had so many books on spirituality. Some I’ve had since I was a teenager. I began to reread them.

This Return to Myself has lead me to my current path of helping others to empower themselves, one that is my calling, a calling that’s always been with me, a part of that intuition I brushed aside.

Now, when I take a step, I listen and follow my own direction, my own voice, my own inner compass that always leads me home, back to myself.

~by Italia Oliver