Light in my Shadow

Mindful Drawing Can Lead You Out of Rock Bottom (and Completely Transform Your Life)

This is a long post, because I have a lot to say about rock bottom – a place I know very well. I’m writing this post for those who are stuck down in rock bottom now. I’ll explain why it exists, and how to use it to completely transform your life.
I spent around 18 months at rock bottom before I crawled out. It was the darkest, scariest time of my life (and I’ve been around). It’s the type of place you wouldn’t wish on your worst enemy. It’s the shittest of Shit Town.
But something mysterious often occurs down at rock bottom. It holds a strange transformative power. Rock bottom has potential to become the best gift you will ever receive – if you navigate Shit Town right.
The saddest thing about rock bottom is that many people don’t make it out. It’s that dark and bleak. The only thing rock bottom should take from you are your programs and your illusions. It should not take your life.

Rock bottom is something many of us will experience in our lifetime.

Rock bottom can be created from your own actions – whether intentional or not – like my rock bottom was. It finds you when something overwhelmingly BIG happens.
Hitting rock bottom
usually involves
loss of some kind.
Maybe it’s an event like the death of a loved one, or the end of a marriage, relationship or career. It could be triggered by the loss of a friend, your home, your reputation or your money. Maybe it’s the loss of your safety, or your freedom because you’ve gone to prison. It may also be triggered by the loss of your mental or physical health.
rock bottom

My descent into rock bottom was set in motion after I lost my Dad to suicide in 2014.

In the two years that followed, I experienced more loss, because I allowed addiction to take it all. I lost my reputation, my self worth, my happiness, my friends, my home, my job, my community gardens and my mental health. For over six months I was positive I was going to jail.
Rock bottom will be triggered by something big enough to shake your entire foundations to the core.
Rock bottom is here to shake us, in order to wake us. It’s not a punishment, just a lesson.
(no shakey, no wakey)
When you look at the small, micro picture it’s as scary as hell, but when you zoom out and view it from the macro scale? The big picture? This is how it works. It is the process of breaking down the old to create space for the new.
Think of a lump of coal being squeezed SO BLOODY HARD it turns into a diamond, or the caterpillar turning to mush before it emerges from the cocoon with big beautiful wings that enables it to fly.

The process of endings and transformation is never easy.

The plummet down to rock bottom is often sudden.

Sometimes – as in my case – the warning lights flash red for a while. I was so messed up I didn’t even notice, I just got a brutal shove onto a fast slippery slope.
Rock bottom is characterised by dark feelings of fear, depression, grief, confusion, regret and shock and you go in alone. Even if you physically have people around, your headspace is in a place where you’re on your own. The underworld is a ticket for one.
Rock bottom has a process, but how long you’re stuck down there varies. It depends on the individual person and their actions – whether they begin moving through it, or remain stuck IN IT.
After a time of processing, you NEED small, high vibration seeds of emotions and feelings – because these are the things that spark your life force again.

These are the tiny seeds from which big things grow. They are your ticket out.

Rock bottom is the perfect place to start mindful drawing because you’re backed into a corner and have no option left. Sooner or later you MUST try something to get out, or you stay there forever.

Rock bottom holds huge potential for consciousness expansion because of 'the elastic band effect'.

When you’re in a place of immense darkness and suffering, it’s black as hell. It feels like forever since you’ve felt joy, life force or happiness. So when you begin to do the work and see benefits, it can fling you into intense gratitude and joy further and faster just like an ‘elastic band effect‘.
The feeling of gratitude raises your frequency. On a brainwave level, you can see this as high-frequency gamma brainwaves (I test this out on myself).
Tapping into feelings and emotions like love, bliss, gratitude, compassion and joy – is how you climb the frequency ladder out of rock bottom (and on the other side of the coin, fear, suffering, regret, blame, self-loathing, shame, anger, etc will HOLD you in a state of low vibration).
Mindful drawing is effective at pulling you out of rock bottom because it STOPS your thoughts and programs from running. Your mind is where this suffering originates from.
There’s a crack in everthing.
It’s how the light gets in.
~ Leonard Cohen

Rock Bottom > Consciousness Expansion (my story)

This is a long tale, but it’s important I tell it in all its shameful detail, because my story serves to show how powerful the practice of mindful drawing can be, to lead you out of rock bottom.
Okay *gulp* let’s go.
In November 2014 I began my decent down to rock bottom which was triggered by the suicide of my dad. I didn’t realise it at the time, but over the next two years my inner world gradually began getting a little freaky.
On the outside, I made sure my social mask didn’t fall off. I stayed busy and I carried on with my job and social life, but I was getting desperate. I’d begun running faster and faster from my feelings to stop them from catching me – and I did this, with addiction.
When my dad died, the sheer emotional weight of grief, combined with a complete inability to process him gone, worse – by suicide – just would not compute. It just got stuck inside of me. I’d already been self-medicating for PTSD from developmental trauma for over 20 years, so I just added this monster to the vault. Away from ME.

I now know that emotion MUST move through you. It is energy in motion.

Sweeping it under the carpet – or locking it in the vault is asking for trouble. But I didn’t know any of this at the time. My Mum was also diagnosed with multiple myeloma (an incurable form of blood cancer) in January 2016, and aside from visiting her in hospital in August 2016 after her stem cell transplant, I don’t recall much of those two years from November 2014 – November 2016.

Regardless, I take full responsibility for my actions.

I was a high-functioning meth-addicted, alcoholic, bong-smoking, gambling addict who ran two community gardens. I was so proud of them, I created them from nothing but an idea, and sheer determination. All my friends helped me build them from the ground up, into two beautiful huge gardens where we had 15 volunteers, and grew veggies and herbs for my favourite not-for-profit restaurant.

Over those two years, I mentally declined and my addictions grew.

I began to borrow money that was sitting in my bank account, but money that was not mine to use. It was money from grants, and I used some of it for my addictions.
I told myself I was using it from my future wages – and I was. But as time went on, one time turned into 50 or 100 times of doing this – I can’t even remember – half the time I was blind drunk or high as a kite – but I did it over and over.
It grew into something so big, I wasn’t able to pay it back. I lost track of everything. I mismanaged everything. For two years I just managed what I could at the garden, and I rolled over 30 problems a day because I couldn’t cope.
By now I was also getting hassled by my landlord every month because I kept spending the entire house rent on my addictions. I had debt collectors chasing me, I never paid the power bills, I just continually changed power companies, I stole all my food and I pawned all my possessions of value. It was so bad that looking back, I cannot believe this was me. But it was.
After around a year of this, I developed an increasing high-pitched screaming sensation in my head, which was caused by a combination of chronic severe stress, heavy addiction, and my habit of skipping my brain around so fast to avoid emotional triggers which were gradually closing in on me.
My phone constantly rang. I couldn’t sleep without being blind drunk and stoned. My mind did not stop. Everything was screaming red and urgent inside my head and emotional body.

I know now that these are the warning signs of nervous breakdown.

I’m an honest person by nature and I’m terrible at lying – and I never want to be good at it – I hate it, it creates a disgusting disharmony inside of me and it was making me sick and it reached a point where I just snapped.
One horrible morning I woke up, and I realised I couldn’t go on. My worst nightmare (which I created), had come true. A weird feeling of peace came over me for the first time in over a year.

On autopilot like a zombie, I packed one bag and I left everything that I loved.
I left my gardens, my home, my beautiful big boy Loki the dog, who I shared with my ex. Loki was like my child and leaving him slowly destroyed him – and me terribly – AND I DID THIS. I left my reputation behind and I left all of my friends who loved me, many of whom I counted as my family.

I left my whole world and I'd destroyed it all.

That morning I checked into a hotel and I messaged my friends – I made some kind of public statement on social media – I just came clean to like 500+ close friends and acquaintances. It was so messed up, I actually had no idea what I was saying or doing at this point. It was some kind of total short circuiting, manic nervous breakdown. Even today, I only have threads of memory.
I stayed in a hotel for two days, crying and gulping red wine straight out the bottle like water.
I was in a weird, surreal dreamlike state, not being able to process what was happening. My sister who was worried for two days that I’d killed myself because my messages were concerning, came to pick me up – and I made her drive me to the police station, where I walked through the doors and told them what I’d done.
The police arrested me and interviewed me for hours. After six months of thinking I was going to prison, they ended up dropping the charges. Can you believe? My first glimmer of hope.

They told me that it was for 3 reasons: 1) I’d handed myself in (apparently that’s a rarity); 2) No one wanted to press charges anyway; and 3) After going through my financial statements, they saw I spent every cent on my addictions, and nothing else.
Everyone from my old gardens, my workplace, my friends and (surprisingly) the police themselves, showed me nothing but love and compassion. They knew I wasn’t a ‘bad’ person – I was just mentally damaged and really fucked up.
Everyone just wanted me to get well. Thinking about level of compassion I was shown turns on the waterworks EVERY TIME. Even now typing this.

From the day I was arrested, I moved into my sister's house on the other side of town. I lived there for three years. The first half, was spent down at rock bottom.

What a dark headspace rock bottom is.
I was on a hellish roundabout of emotions ranging from horror, confusion and shock (I actually couldn’t process what had happened for a while). I still had the ‘frozen’, unprocessed grief from my dad’s suicide (I didn’t begin to process this in a healthy way for a while yet). Grief for the loss of my close friends because I know how much I hurt them.
I had deep sadness for losing my home, which was the most beautiful creative hangout, full of beautiful memories. Grief at the loss of two gardens that I gave my heart and soul to create – they were my pride and joy. I had devastation for leaving my boy Loki who I shared with my ex. I knew he was suffering. The immense love, pain and guilt I felt for Loki actually became my biggest fuel for change.
My closest friends were there for me. Some friends I never spoke to again. I have a handful who I’ll call my friends forever. But I couldn’t connect with them anymore. I wanted to be alone. I didn’t want anyone around me. What do I say?  What the hell was even going on?

One of the worst feelings was knowing that I created it all.

For over a year the only glimpse of light was my nephew – who was 3 at the time. He was my light. He didn’t care what I’d done. My sister has nothing but unconditional love for me. Without her support and roof over my head I don’t know where I’d be.
And that’s how I stayed. I had dark depression, enormous regret, shameful embarrassment, terrible isolation. I still had a screaming, racing mind. It took me a long time to rewire my brain which had become stuck in high-beta stress mode.
I totally wished I was dead but I’ve never been the type who’d do it, I’m too fucking stubborn. I just wanted an asteroid to destroy me (and somehow spare everyone else), or a chunk of aeroplane to drop on my head and put me out of my misery.

What a fucking shit show, and I DID IT.

I never touched meth again – mostly because I now lived hours away from my dealers which I was thankful for. Smoking weed went from 20 times a day to once a month. I still powered my way through $4 bottles of red wine for maybe a year and a half – I got into this habit of leaving drunken, crying voicemails to myself. Holy shiiiit. I didn’t even know they existed until I found a bunch in my phone not long ago. I tried to listen to one of them, and I couldn’t do it. The pain that came through that phone from my old self, was unbearable. I was a fucking mess.

I'd also started attending different addiction groups. I went to psychologists and psychiatrists.

No one could help me – I already knew every trick in the book to TRY and stop and I still couldn’t stop gambling and I couldn’t stop drinking. I got diagnosed with Gambling Affected Disorder, Substance Abuse Disorder and PTSD from Developmental Disorder.
I also transferred my addictive tendencies to food and I put on 13 kilos in six months. And I just stayed trapped in this hellish version of Groundhog Day.

At some point in rock bottom, I found a friend. Writing.

I started journaling at the time, and I swear, if I did not have an outlet to express what was inside of me, I don’t know how I would have survived. Journaling became my best friend.
Around the start of 2017, I also stuck something on the wall – a piece of A4 white paper with the only goals I had:
2017 – 2019: LEARN
As it turned out, my prediction was spot on.

The Slow Climb Out of Rock Bottom

A year and a half into my darkness, I picked up a pen and started drawing. I didn’t know it at the time, but that day things began to change. The first thing I noticed was I was able to get out of bed and face the day. I began to have something to look forward to.
Gradually I began to feel tiny sparks of pride and joy in my drawing. I began to feel gratitude that I had found this new thing. I felt a growing gratitude for nature – for the big beautiful tree in the backyard that gave me shade. For the blackbird that sang to me while I ate dinner outside and for the raindrops and sunlight on my face.
I began to appreciate time on my own. Through focus and attention on what I was drawing I’d begun rewiring my brain to steady itself. My brain slowly began to function in a less chaotic manner.
I found I was able to read again, because my concentration was improving. And because I draw with full focus, it blocked out my thoughts and programs, so for the first time in my life all those terrible thoughts and emotions I had took a back seat.

The more I practiced, I noticed bigger things began happening.

I gradually began to feel the “trapped” repressed grief for my Dad begin to process. It began to move through me, instead of me keeping it shoved in the vault where it was poisoning me. I cried a lot.

Three to four years after my dad died, I finally began to mourn for him and grieve. It was ripping my heart to shreds, but it felt right – it felt cathartic, like I was letting something flow. It felt healthy. Then I’d return to mindful drawing and it would anchor me in a place of calm again – away from my MIND.

And there was more.

I had heaps of ‘aha’ moments where I went ‘somewhere else’ (what I now know to be the high gamma brainwave state) and I’d come back with giant pieces of my puzzle – pieces I couldn’t find for over 20 years.
I’d find these pieces outside the reaches of my conscious mind, and when they got brought back in through my subconscious mind, I instantaneously viewed my rock-solid old programs from a new perspective. It allowed me to detach it from my narrative and it freed me from my old traumas.
This trauma was also the root cause of my addiction, so for the first time in decades I began to relapse less.
Gradually I begin to improve my self care. I began to eat better, stop drinking and gambling, quit smoking, sleep better and I grew to love myself. For the first time I was finally able to look myself in the eyes and love who I saw. I forgave myself and let go of the toxic emotions I was hanging onto like shame and regret.
Gradually my ‘veil of separation’ dissolved and I connected with unity consciousness and oneness with all living things. Unity consciousness is the most beautiful blissful state of being there is. It will never not move me to tears – it’s the thing I looked for everywhere, ever since I was a little girl.

It's also a natural trait that activates as a result of raising frequency. The veil of separation is dissolved.

All of these things brings about such deep love and gratitude, which in turn raises your gamma brainwaves, which raises your frequency, which is what pulls you out of the low vibration state of rock bottom. You begin to RISE.
I began to be able to meditate and I connected with strong intuition, synchronicity and a deep level of self-awareness. I still cry often for Loki my boy and my Dad. It still rips my heart to shreds, years later. But now I deeply honour emotion – I allow it sacred space and I allow it to move through me.
I can feel it expanding my feeling centres, which in turn expands my consciousness which enables me to perceive EVEN more.

Back to that note on my wall:

2017 – 2019 – LEARN
In the first two years I learned. I cleared all my dark shit out of the way. I learned a lot about shadow work, deleting subconscious programs, I learned about mindful drawing and I learned so much about myself – why I was the way I was.

In 2019 for the first time instead of self-sabotaging myself, I began to manifest GOOD THINGS.

I got my passport, and in June 2019 I went overseas for the first time ever – at 44 years of age. I travelled to Bali on my own, and I filled seven days with amazing vegan food, Gong Baths, massages, meditations, shamanic healing, sound healings, breathwork workshops and nature walks in tropical paradise.
In August I got my driver’s licence for the first time which was huge for me. In September 2019 I moved out into a magical place on my own near the seaside – all in 2019 at age 44.
Little weird side note: For my 45th birthday, on 10 March 2020, I wanted to celebrate manifesting the most amazing year. My birthday fell on a full moon and I went to Sorrento by myself, and swam with dolphins – I was flopping around in the water with the dolphins at 1.05pm, the exact time I turned 45. The next day, as I was on my way home, the global pandemic was declared.
What a ride we’re on. As I write this now, on 29 September 2020, we’re in Stage 4 lockdown here in Melbourne. Every day I write in my PJs (my iso uniform) because we’ve been in lockdown for months. Almost everything’s closed. It’s illegal to travel further than 5k radius, and no ones allowed to visit anyone. It’s also a crime to leave home after 8pm because we’re under a curfew, State of Disaster AND a State of Emergency.

I can feel the mental health strain out there. I can see it. There's a lot of fear globally.

And I recognise it. We’re entering a global rock bottom – this portal of darkness is leading to a transformation on Earth.
I know we have FULL potential for global transformation that will be triggered by events over the next few years. I have no doubt it can create the fuel we need to raise our own consciousness, and change our entire world. If you peer underneath the chaos, there are strong signs that it’s already happening.
Today, I’m grateful for my terrible rock bottom because it led me here. It drives me to do what I do now – to use my freedom to help free others.
My sister also saw my transformation. She started a mental health charity here in Melbourne called Mindful Makings and in 2021, she won Kingston City Council’s Woman of the Year award. I’m so proud of her.
I have a little note on the fridge now that says: “Remember when you wanted what you currently have.” And I do. I’ll never take it for granted.

Heaven and hell are states of consciousness. Today I live in heaven, but I will never forget my time in hell.

For anyone going through rock bottom now, I see you. Be patient and kind to yourself. Sit there for a while and allow yourself to process. When you’re ready, get FIERCELY determined to create your freedom – this is your invitation. When you’re ready, do the work.

Don’t fear that it won’t happen for you. If you do the work it WILL happen. Strong intention AND action WILL PULL IT IN. This is how it works.
Rock bottom will rip you from the Matrix. The comfort zone is gone. The illusion is gone. Catch your breath, adjust your sight and navigate your way around. It’s going to be better than okay.


The spark of light comes back brighter than you EVER imagined could exist. The tiny spark of life force gets in and it will snowball if you let it. It will accelerate. The veil of separation WILL dissolve. Watch the bullshit illusion begin to gradually fall away, and be prepared to be blown away by what you see underneath. It will plug you in to the unified field of consciousness itself and connect you right into the source of love.
Don’t take my word for it.
Try it out for yourself.
It doesn’t matter how black your world is, or how big your pain. The darker and bigger the suffering, the more it has the capacity to equivalently stretch your feeling center to the opposite side – far beyond the boundaries of where it was. It enables to you to perceive more light and more love.
Do the work. I can teach you how using the process of mindful drawing. Unwrap the gift, get past the dog shit paper and get to the diamond.

The diamond, is you.

Trust the process. This is how it works.