The Other Side of The Oak Tree
A dream is coming true and I have been thinking I would like to document this process.
I signed a contract on the auspicious Autumn Equinox. It is just over 6 months since the first meeting with psychic medium Anthony Grzelka and word weaver Linda Van Zijl from the ‘Whispers From Beyond’ team whom I met for lunch in Perth last September when they first told me about their idea for to create a children’s story book and that they wanted me to be the illustrator.
I remember the day I went to meet them, I had flown into Perth the night before and I awoke so anxious that I nearly cancelled our lunch. I knew they wanted to discuss an illustration job but I had no idea I actually had the job in their mind but instead of running away from a dream I sat and read ‘The Universe Has Got Your Back’ by Gabrielle Bernstein and got my shit together. I breathed into my fear of rejection and failure and too good to be trues and turned my fear into fuel – I can do this.
I drove to the ‘Whispers From Beyond’ office in Applecross to meet with them both for lunch. As I sat in the waiting room I inhaled a grounding essential oil blend and made sure my exhale was longer than my inhale to keep me grounded and the anxiety at bay – I can’t recommend pranayama and essential oils enough for anxiety – life savers!
I have met a few ‘celebrities’ before – not that Anthony goes around acting like a celebrity mind you, he is very grounded but I didn’t know this at the time, nor anything about him other than the fact he was on channel 7’s ‘The One’ a few years ago and I think I was a bit frightened. Even the ‘spiritual’ celebrities I have met can be full on energetically and as a highly sensitive person (HSP) I just don’t have the energy or desire to work with that kind of energy, no matter the amazibleness of the opportunity.
Before they arrived I tuned in and reminded myself that my spirit guides, my divine spark, the fae are always with me. I asked that if this project was in all our best interests that ease and flow and grace be with us and its creation and for all our dealings with each other to be in this alignment. I asked for help to come into my centre, I asked for our highest spirits to be in alignment. I asked my highest self to aid me, to know my worth and trust my vibes. To not get swept up in a ‘great opportunity’ if the good vibes weren’t there. I have been led astray in the past so I wanted to go into this meeting very grounded. It is so essential as a HSP I have found to do this prep work for myself, all the time. I do a daily alignment practise but even still, before I walk out into the world I need to check in with where I am at and throughout my time out in the world I need to keep checking back in, it’s all about self-care and self-awareness I guess.
Anyway I digress. So I have prepped myself, Linda and Anthony arrive and we go to a cute little café and Anthony very generously buys us all lunch and we talk about the book, I thought I was going to have to do a job interview or something like that but not at all, they had already picked me, praise the powers of my Facebook page, my art had already sold itself, Amazing. Once I realised I didn’t have to convince anyone I was the illustrator for them I just sat and absorbed it all. The energy was so good, so relaxed and easy, Linda had so many beautiful ideas and lots of examples and so we talked books, characters, formats and I sat and took notes in my journal – thank heavens I don’t leave the house without it – Note to self – Never leave the house without your journal and pencil EVER! I left that initial meeting on cloud nine, they were both so lovely, the vibes were great, the flow was so flow and this was a dream seed being planted – I was going to be a REAL book illustrator with two really lovely authors.
I have to admit that for a while there I thought nothing was ever going to happen after that first meeting, life kept getting in the way, Anthony has the busiest schedule traveling the country side doing medium demonstrations, workshops and readings, I currently live on the other side of the country and the back and forth of the contract was taking a long time to progress but I also kept getting the reassurance from spirit that everything happens in divine time.
The first challenge I have encountered, which I have come to believe was the biggest energy blocker for the contract on my end was the Fraud Police, those assholes would go off every now and then flooding me in a wave of overwhelm and taunting me with “Thank the Gods you don’t have a contract because you can’t even illustrate a children’s book, you’re not even an illustrator, who do you think you are? You can’t even draw? You are going to fail, you’re going to let everyone down…” OMG they are f@#kers, mean f@#kers. At first the negative talk totally overwhelmed me and sent a paralysing feeling down my arms like when you get a fright and the adrenaline hurts your arms. I would then have a feeling like a giant wave was about to crash over my head, my throat would close up and lots of tears would come. On those days I stayed in bed a little bit longer.
That’s when I began rough sketches of the characters looks, brainstorming who they were within the safety of my sketchbook, I drew and drew each day and you know what those Fraud Police started to shut up, action defeats the noise of the Fraud Police – what a wonderful lesson. They would arc up and rather than avoiding the noise I would listen, I would neither agree nor ignore, I gave the part of me space that needed to be a negative nancy and then I just got on with it, I chose to believe something different. I chose to believe in the truth of my dreaming. I chose to believe in myself.
Here's one i prepared earlier from 2014 aptly titled "She Decided To Believe In Herself"... hmmm seems its a recurring theme.
Okay so after a big start to 2018, moving house and all the things, I just got settled into my new studio and BAM the contract finally arrives with the Equinox – excellent! Blessed divine timing.
And so begins the daily illustration of what we hope to be about a 150 page hardcover illustrated story book aimed at 6 to 12 year olds called
“The Other Side of the Oak Tree: A collection of stories to guide your child's spiritual growth and awareness."
The stories will centre around a little girl named Tabitha, her friend Juniper the Fox, a wise Owl named Winsome who lives in an Enchanted Tree and Arlo, her Spirit Guide. The story is designed to help children explore their thoughts and feelings around things like the loss of a loved one, reincarnation, spirit guides and animal spirits.
Anthony is offering people the opportunity to sponsor the book to aid its creation. For $150 you can have a personalised message printed at the bottom of one of the beautiful pages.
What a treasured gift.
Your message will be the only one appearing on a page, and you can request a page number in relation to a special date. Dedications can be to a family member, pet or child, either living or passed. For example: In memory of Jake. Love Mum & Dad. I can also include a small illustration of your choice to accompany your message, for example, a pair of wings or a soccer ball. The sponsorship fee of $150 also includes a complimentary copy of the book.
To be involved call the "Whispers From Beyond" office on (08) 9791 8529
or email firstname.lastname@example.org places are limited.
And you can head here to Whispers From Beyond to learn more about Anthony's work.