I love that word…SEACHANGE. And yes, I know it is meant to be written as “sea change” but when I lived in Greenville, NH the only real business in that tiny hamlet was the company, Seachange, and I fell in love with the word from passing by it everyday on the way to the movie rental place with my 3 year old son. We’d walk at night with the snow swirling around the big sign and there was something about that word that always sunk in.
I have been writing a lot about money lately. Not from an analytical perspective. Not from the realm of notion and conjecture. But from the perspective of someone who has very very little of it. I never really have had much of it. Money and I have been on the outs for a long time. I do feel like it is on the way “out”. I do sincerely feel that it cannot coincide with equality for humanity.
Today someone said to me “You can not manifest money from what has not been manifested by money.” I loved this. And I felt it to be true. Yet, I had to acknowledge that it is not what is actually practiced. Just as we can never repay someone for saving our life…but we may try. Value and money will never marry one another. This quote though touched me deeply. I realized I have done all I can to embrace it. I have been feeling a Seachange coming in terms of my relationship to receiving money for healing work and being a householder.
What I have arrived at is identifying my basic tenets vis a vis money and my work.
- the work must be made available to anyone, regardless of their ability to pay
- my holding onto having there be no fees, does not support my continued availability to offer the work
- I feel that the highest good I can offer the world is to be able to remain devoted and available to offer this work.
- I am a householder…without money I cannot support my children with food and shelter…though I disagree with this structure, my disagreeing with it does not provide food nor shelter.
- I must find a heartfelt way to facilitate and meet being a householder and yet not pretend that any amount of money can be accurately charged for this work.
So…after all this exploration, at this point I still feel that I will never charge a fee. But I need to surrender something. I need to soften around something.
I have been being with this. Today a client asked me for support with something. I offered it. When we were done I declined payment. It was fun to offer support…why ask for money? But then she said that I had to choose, that it would not work for her to offer nothing. So I said…”Okay…$40 is what pops into my mind.” Then she ended up contributing $100 via Paypal about 5 minutes later.
It taught me something. Well, okay, it taught me a lot. I really understood that she wanted to give. I could feel the heart in it. When I declined…I was blocking her giving. And though I could go on and on about how I can’t wait for the days when money is not in between our heart and what we can give…it is here now still..and my blocking her blocks putting food on the table for my kids. People are yet accustomed to giving via money. I saw that after all I have been through with working for free…that I need to find a way to allow others to give that is relatable to them. I also wanted to find a way to stretch it a bit too…to embrace what I hope is a different way. But I didn’t know what to do.
I also talked to a different client this evening during a phone session. This particular person is so completely aligned in supporting his family. I could feel how much it meant to them to be able to support their children and providing for them. And honestly…in my world…I provide many things to my children…but I am not a good provider as a householder. As a person that prioritizes financial security for my children…I pretty much suck at it. I just do. It is a fact.
Then the Sea Change moment finally arrived. I asked myself to acknowledge that I have totally played out offering healing work for free. I acknowledged that I do not want to charge money, but if I want to be a better provider for my children and do healing work…I must appeal to a different way. I must find a way to charge for healing work in which everyone pays for the sessions. I had to create a way through all of these things to find some way that I could live with and that hopefully would embrace all of this apparently divergent truth.
Starting today, here is my new fee schedule as listed on my Contributions page….
At the end of each session contribute a financial amount that you feel is balanced between supporting this work so that it may continue and touching the edge of what you can responsibly afford.
This means that everyone pays something. And for me…that is a huge shift…to require every client to pay something. But it feels like it must happen and shift in this direction in support of all the things I must balance, given the state of the world as it is right now and to meet my responsibilities.
(the photo is mine, sunset at Lido Beach, FL)