NALA, MARCO, & BLOSSOMING SHAKTI
I was raised in a Russian Evangelical Baptist Christian church. Enough said. 🙂 Ancestral soviet lineage work can be a massive responsibility and a heavy load to carry.
On the surface I had a carefree childhood growing up in a huge Ukrainian family, but I experienced my fair share of suppression and abuse. For much of my adolescent life I was an ordinary girl following the mainstream script and had not yet identified my childhood trauma.
Fast forward to young adulthood, when I graduated from college with a business degree and started to awaken spontaneously. The boredom of my 9-5 tech job in Boston fueled my desire for a more fulfilling life, and I decided to take a solo trip to San Diego where my life really began to unravel out of routine. For the first time I witnessed a seriously different way of being — people working fun jobs, relaxing on the beach, not so concerned about prestige or taking life too seriously. New England felt so structured, fixed, and O-fficial that I hadn’t even considered breaking out of the system I was born into. “You mean I don’t have to stay here and spend my days doing things I don’t want to do or convincing myself desk work is totally worth trading my life for???”
I used to always think traveling was for people who grew up in adventurous American families (lol). It never dawned on me that I could create whatever life I desired. This was just the beginning of breaking down all these socially constructed beliefs that were ingrained in me. I was so inspired by this revelation that within three weeks of returning from my trip, I left everything familiar and fully moved into my new apartment in San Diego. I loooved predictability and the comfort of knowing, so this was extremely uncharacteristic of me, and would be the first of many impulsive decisions that were made by a force beyond my will or rational mind. All I knew was I needed to go.
After just a few months in San Diego, I felt I had so much yet to experience and learn from the world. Again I packed my bags, but this time without a safety net – no home or job to come back to. Just trust. I traveled to Hawaii, Australia, and SE Asia, where much of my initial remembrance occurred. These journeys were beyond anything I can begin to summarize. It was a massively rapid transformation and I was shedding faster than my mind could comprehend. I reconnected to the Earth, sisterhood, and myself. This is when I started to go beyond the inspirational quotes and physical yoga practice – into the introspective work, journaling, and meditation.
Gradually the realizations settled in, I returned to California, and dove into a year-long conscious relationship before uprooting once again. My relationship ended after a miscarriage; a massive teacher that gave me insight into life & death, the mysterious force behind life, my core wounding, and the collective pain of the female psyche.
Moving forward from this intense experience led me to a medicine journey where I had profound revelations and felt the deep urge to be in community, connect, and rediscover myself. This summer spurt of van-life and traveling aimlessly brought me to the point of loneliness and despair where I yearned to free myself from the bondage of my pain, to taste pure awareness and Truth. I needed to know – Who am I really? What is the point of all of this? What is self-realization and is it possible in this lifetime?
Emerging from the stillness of a 10-day silent meditation retreat, I met Marco ever-so-synchronistically at Beloved Festival in Oregon. For the next 2 years we journeyed deep and I went through another bout of radical transformation. I softened, deepened into spiritual practice, shed many of the layers I was hiding under, and radically shifted into a truer version of myself.
What I had begun to uncover needed some space to breathe. Wholly focused on realization of Self broke open a subtle dimension of my being that had been shamefully hiding all along, and exposing it brought about a tremendous transformation. I spent many months healing from an Eating Disorder that had plagued my inner world for 5 years and was my biggest barrier to authenticity and service. This was one of the most testing periods of my life, my “dark night of the soul” summer.
After this clearing we were sent on a year-long journey of travel that crystal-clarified our mission and allowed us to lay down the foundation for it to flourish. I slowly gained my power back and began to feel embodied again. My passion for healing through touch was awakened unexpectedly at a Tantric Massage training for women. It felt like a long-lost love that, once reunited, filled me to the brim and affirmed a piece of my soul purpose.
We knew we had a mission together and both shared a longing to serve women in embodying their truth. Only after all of this ground work was done, were our offerings ready to be born. One of the major inspirations for this work is the growth I’ve experienced from practices and reflections in the last two years. It felt inconceivable for me to hold onto all of this transformational potency without sharing it with the world, considering how absolutely life-changing it was for me.
I look forward to connecting hearts and sharing more of myself and this work with you. Thank you for being here. 🙏✨
Childhood was a somewhat standard middle-class experience for me, although I did move around quite a bit and remember regularly adjusting to new environments and people. When I think back on my first 10 years the imprints that stick out most are: having fun being a rascal and playing with my three brothers & our friends, spending summers in Nicaragua where my mother was born and raised and the sweet nurturing energy I shared with her, and how much I loved the long peaceful hours I’d spend in solitude staring off into nothingness.
Things took an intense and dramatic turn when the building tensions between my parents resulted in a messy international divorce case when I was 10. The pain I internalized throughout the next years of their battle, and the general angst of living in such a harsh world plunged me into a deep depression. By the time I was a teen I was taking my anger out by inflicting harm upon myself and exploring substances. To say the very least, adolescence was a conflicted time of darkness for me. Not only did I have internal strife to work through but witnessed chaos, substance abuse, instability, depression, and violence in my family life, and felt that I was constantly having fuel added to the raging fire that was my life. Around age 17 I came out of this dense black metal and agony phase and started to see the Light again. I had good friends and a loving girlfriend to support me and would happily spend my days making music and enjoying the palm trees in south Florida.
At the age of 19, after a couple years of experimenting with meditation and studying spiritual texts, I was initiated into Kriya yoga and fell in love with the Great Goddess.
Early on into my practice, I was blessed with long orgasmic journeys of Kundalini awakening through breath and concentration alone, resulting in breathless states and out-of-body travels. These experiences of bliss and the fulfilling romance of spiritual ecstasy led me into a 5 year stint of celibacy where I explored fasting, deep hours of meditation, and the sweetness of devotional practices.
Two years into this period of vigorous sadhana, at the peak of my absorption, I was involved in a car wreck in Africa in which two of my three brothers passed, and I was left hanging onto life by a thread. Two weeks out-of-body, in a coma, I floated around in various dimensions of existence meeting with many masters and forms of the Goddess with whom I took further initiations. Though I witnessed beauty beyond my wildest dreams, I also experienced hellish realms made up of the darkest most heinous energy I’d ever experienced. It was part of my initiation to stay at peace throughout the madness, and once it would pass I’d again merge into the light realms and visit with angelic beings.
Throughout this time, I consciously used all of my yogic tools to keep my body alive and have clear memories of breathing my life-force back into my mangled body. At one point, feeling more attracted to the formless radiance than to the sickly ICU room, I decided to leave the earthy plane for good. I reversed my consciousness inwards and became fully absorbed in a tunnel of light that erased all memory of human existence. Through this tunnel I entered into the inconceivable realms beyond form and surrendered blissfully into the peace of total emptiness.
A timeless moment later I was shocked back into my body. I saw all of the angelic lights I’d witnessed in the higher realms present in the eyes of my loved ones surrounding me, and realized in a flash that I was embodied here on Earth to actively serve life. This was a moment of major significance for me because as much as I had idealized spiritual service, I had been much more focused on transcending this reality and “blasting out the crown chakra” to “go home” rather than bringing home to this material world. According to the doctors, I was not supposed to have remembered anything from my coma or out-of-body travels, but I know that the experiences I had were retained to help me create a bridge between the transcendent realms and this current waking life.
Flying back to the US, I resumed college, continued my sadhana, began healing my injuries and grounding back into my body, and embarked upon the long journey of integrating my realizations into daily life. Living out the cosmic truths I’d remembered within this tiny human body, within this mind, throughout my emotions and desires, and in human relationship, became the focus of my path.
Two years after this experience, I finished college, and with a burning heart left for a 6 month solo pilgrimage in India where all of my greatest spiritual fantasies would come alive. On this journey I met sages, mystics, train station sadhus, and even seemingly random people who would share profound messages about my past and future with me and then disappear. My pilgrimage took me to temples, caves, and yogic epicenters I had dreamed of visiting for years, and the Grace that I recieved continue to melt and humble me to this day. Some of the greatest blessings I received were: taking further initiation into Kriya from Lahiri Mahasaya’s family in Varanasi, being initiated into Radha Bhakti by Srila Ananta Das Babaji Maharaj- the Mahant of Radhakund, and the profound time of remembrance I spent in Dakineswar at the Ramakrishna temple in the presence of Sri Kali.
The blessings I received from the beautiful people I met along the way, genuine gurus, and heartfelt practitioners are far beyond the scope of this tiny bio, but what I can say is thank you! Between my sadhana and the magic of these consecrated lands, I was able to experience ecstasy and mystic absorption I’d only read about in scriptures. Remembering so much of my Self in India I was tempted to stay forever and renounce the world physically, but though this was my underlying intention in going, I was reminded through many mirrors that my renunciation would be of the ego, and that I did not incarnate to hide in a cave and pray for others remotely. I started receiving visions of the time I would be spending in the city of Los Angeles soon thereafter, and though it seemed distant and irrational at that time, I would soon understand the power of finding peace amidst the chaos of the conventional world.
The importance of integrating into this reality was again confirmed again on my second trip to India years later when I had a dream in which Himalayan sages in my crown told me to let go of my fixation on transcendence and to bring that energy into my creative center, and into the material world itself.
In 2017, after a decade of communing with the Goddess in her many transcendent forms, I was guided to start directing my worship towards her embodiments, towards those souls who were incarnating and manifesting her Grace here on earth. This is when I met Nala.
I was finishing up a two year period of relative solitude in the jungles of Hawaii, in which I had dedicated to my own sovereignty and peace, and was not seeking anything outside of myself. Our relationship, which was a surprise for us both, has been among the greatest blessings in my life, right up there with being born and meeting with Source. Nala is the living presence of the Goddess in my life and wholly represents the natural grace and what I envision as the incoming divine feminine presence on earth.
Through our dynamic I was able to unravel myself further and understand my purpose in life more directly. I realized that I’d clearly not yet activated my living dharma in the world and started to align more deeply with it. After an earthquake and volcanic eruption dispersed much of my community on Big Island, I was guided to uproot and leave my precious life behind. After almost 5 years of a ridiculously blissful and secluded island life, this was a difficult transition to say the least.
As hidden blessings go, my abrupt departure was a boon from Pele that led to a year of travel in which Nala and I began to lay down the framework for our mission together. Sitting in meditation, we’d both receive the same messages about how to live out our hearts’ dharma, and the mission we had gotten glimpses of since meeting began to crystalize. It was through this kind of communion that Blossoming Shakti was born.
Honestly, I have been somewhat reluctant to step out and share myself, but the guidance has been clear, astrological alignments on point, and at this point I am simply grateful to all of the forces of Love that have conspired to put me into divine service in this way. So here I am coming out of my cave, heart open, and excited to meet you!
Coming Soon ~ Hari Om.