Hi. Talyaa here. I have Stage 4 cancer.
I have cancer. My soulmate — the love of my life — has sworn to love me back to living.
Until July 28, 2012, the day I heard I have Stage 4 metastatic melanoma, I thought my biggest life story was that in 2008 I left my children to live with their father and moved 3000 miles away. But as hard as it was to move away from the people I loved most in the world and find the real me who hid under the motherhood veneer I had worn for years, it was nothing compared to what it feels like having a doctor tell you to your face that they expect you to die in less than 9 months. I have a chance to live — a good chance — if I make real change, right now. I have a chance to live if I become the Wild Goddess I always wanted to be. I have a chance to live because my soulmate is worth living for.
My job is to help women be powerful and alive.
We women are the mothers of the universe. We are the holders and the creators of the sacred. But we forgot how powerful — how magnificent — we are.
How do we remember? By coming together in sisterhood. By luxuriating in our sensual selves. By finding our true voices. By taking back the joy in learning. And by being a powerful force in relationship.
We are women. This is our destiny.
I am here to shine light on Shazam Brilliance in women. When women start living their goddess selves, the world gets better. For all of us.
I do my job two ways:
#1 Working directly with women
I do Soul Alchemy & Shazam Artistry. This means my healing magics, my skill at sleuthing the intuitive lowdown on Who You Are, and other life-awesomizers.
#2 Putting my life on display
We humans connect through story. My story is far from complete, and by writing my guts out as I explore the depths of my soul and (hopefully) becoming a better person, maybe you can find some takeaways.
Right. How am I qualified for this? My official bio:
In 2008, I did the unthinkable — I left my children. That heartbreaking decision sparked within me a deep desire to take back my life, stop holding back, and to start living like I mean it. I sold everything I owned, moved 3000 miles away, and embarked on a deep healing journey.
Since then I faced cancer (not so successfully), healed my heart and body, found my soulmate, and trailblazed a worldwide movement to remaster what it is to be a woman and a mother. I worked through deep emotional issues common to many women – worthiness, conflict, anger, and trusting my heart. I broke my isolation and moved into community. I unleashed my inner voice, tore away the bonds that kept me shackled to outdated beliefs about women and mothers, and awakened my needs and desires. I transformed my life.
Oh, and I changed my name.
What makes me different
I’ve been through some hard stuff. Human stuff. Marriages and relationships with emotional Neanderthals. Kid with Down syndrome. Leaving my kids. Self-criticism up the wazoo. Cancer. I often find it hard to love some of the ugly things I see in me, but my life experience gives me a unique perspective and boatloads of compassion to love the things in you that you find unlovable.
Call me Google Queen, but things interest me. I am always looking for the why. Plus: this world is so cool, how can I not be curious about it? Bonus: I know about a ton of stuff.
I don’t know if I buy this one or not. People tell me that my life choices — like choosing to live apart from my kids — are courageous. Maybe they are. If I downplay my achievements and experiences, it’s because I don’t think they’re all that remarkable. I have high standards; sue me. To me, I am just living my life and making the choices that seem right. Now, if I were a trapeze artist/tuba player with no arms or legs? That would be remarkable.
I believe in limitless possibilities. I’ve seen and experienced some amazing things. My ability to tap into limitlessness helps you give voice to your own sense of possibility. At the same time, I’m exploring — deeply — what it is to be human. I believe we find our divinity when we truly look into ourselves and one other.
Tireless Drive For Authenticity
I turn 50 next year and am just now discovering the freedom that comes from being authentic. I won’t stop until I get it right. Even though it sometimes scares the shit out of me.
Where I come from: 49 years of the past
- Stay-at-home mother of four
- Working mom
- Single mom
- Wife of an emotionally abusive airline pilot
- Prolific mommy blogger
- Pro blogger (paid for writing about a million words)
- Woo-woo extraordinaire
- Professional channel — “like a psychic, only better”
- Property manager
- Corporate drone
- Gifted student
- Choir girl
- Rape victim
- Waldorf mom
- Cancer chick (malignant melanoma)
- Children’s fantasy adventure novelist
- Holder-in of suppressed anger
- Stalker victim
- US Army recruit
- Child of an alcoholic
Whew. Glad I’m done with THAT shit.
But wait! It gets better! These are the labels I’m keeping:
- Kick-ass smart
- Word wrangler
- Improv artist
- Seer of souls
- Sister to goddesses
- Elfin queen
- Deep listener
- Martial artist
- Mother Who Runs With The Wolves
- Life Remasterer
- Maker up of words to suit my wit
Totally worth keeping. Thank you (takes a bow).
Peak moments of my life — so far
The beauty-times that make life really worth living
- My soulmate, who amazes me every day with his love and who is a tireless, encouraging witness to my reinvention. The very fact that he exists at all still astounds me daily, and that he is making life with me is more than I ever dreamed possible.
- Walking with my mother through her darkening hallway of Alzheimer’s disease. I know now that I will never know the mother I wished I had, but through her regression I can know the little girl who became the woman who was my mother.
- Getting cancer. Okay, the fear, the surgery, the pain, the recovery, and the withdrawal from painkillers were no piece of cake. But deciding to do whatever it takes to really live? And then doing just that? Priceless.
- Skydiving in New Zealand. I took on my deepest fear, fell to the earth, and lived.
- The exhilarating 7 week solo road trip I took on my way to moving to the PNW, after having sold everything I owned except what could fit in my car.
- The day my mom said, “We’re getting a horse” and I knew that wishing really works.
A sprinkling of sparkly spiritual experiences!
Moments when everything fell away and I knew capital-T Truth.
- 45 minutes experiencing — on every level — the absolute oneness of everything: fence posts; my car’s steering wheel; other drivers. Yes, I was driving at the time. Might rethink that if it happens again.
- Two weeks of utter bliss, happiness, peace, and wonderment following a rebirthing session in which I received messages from my dead friend Chris, my dead boss Bob, and dead John Lennon.
- Pulling an all-night dark-night-of-the-soul plunge during a 10-day Vipassana meditation retreat and waking up to find out the world had changed.
- Traveling through time and space to a freaky version of 20,000 years ago while standing still in a portal in an urban forest in Vancouver BC.
- Tripping on shrooms while lying on my bed at age 16, windows flung open, and breathing with my front-yard trees all night.
- Hiking Stimpson Nature Reserve in Bellingham WA and hearing the voices of my inner guidance tell me what would happen in the next several months of my life. I did not believe them about the cancer.
Pivotal life moments + choice points
When you know deep in your bones that nothing will ever be the same again
- Quitting college in my 2nd semester as a theater major because the play I was in was canceled and I freaked out in my fear of not having any talent and never being able to get a real job. (This probably was a Bad Idea)
- Being hospitalized at age 19 with a sudden attack of gastroenteritis in Tucson on the road from leaving Army training in Texas, and deciding to stay married after all to my first husband of two months because he was nice to me; 3 months later I wanted to have a baby more than anything in the world. (This may have been a Bad Idea)
- Deciding to move from AZ to PA at age 26 to be with my then live-in boyfriend, who I had let live with me because I felt responsible for his apartment getting broken into because I had rented his apartment to him. (This also may have been a Bad Idea)
- Getting a Reiki treatment because my friend told me my “life would change”. I just wanted to not be depressed any more. (This led to going down a spiritual rabbit hole and reconnecting with the spiritual self I gave up at 19 = Good Idea)
- A seemingly random moment as a property manager in Phoenix, when I just knew everything after that moment would be forever different. (Bad? Good? Who knows?)
- Feeling a sudden warm embrace of delicious energy on October 4, 2010 when I was in Houston TX, searching for the human source of that energy, and finally finding it in my soulmate two months later. (I still feel him now) (Very Good)
Things you might not believe about me
Quirky AND true!
- Although I was an honors student, I almost didn’t graduate from high school because I was too shy to walk into a class late and face a roomful of near-strangers looking at me.
- At 15, I devoured personal development and self-help books, sure that I was destined to become the Next Big Multi-Level Marketing Star.
- While I was being robbed at gunpoint at age 16, I couldn’t help but be snarky to the robber.
- The Real Me is a cross between my Facebook and my Pinterest. Go! Friend me now!
- One day my wardrobe will consist almost entirely of Gypsy/Pirate Steampunk attire.
- I am almost halfway towards a Black Belt in 8 styles of traditional martial arts through Oom Yung Doe, a kick-ass mind-body practice that is changing my life and turning me into an athlete.
Okay! So, what’s next, sweetpea? (3 options — choose one or all!)
OPTION #1. Work with me.
…if you feel stuck, need a nudge, or need healing, go Shazam!
…if you want to know the meaning of life — YOUR life — craft Your Life as a Story.
…if you know you need answers but don’t even know the questions to ask, consult the Magic Mirror.
…if you are a mom and want to be a better mom, consult the Motherhood Guru.
…if you want to know what’s in store for your next year, get Wild & Delicious.
…if you lost your mojo, get it back with the Magic Mojo Goddess Kit.
OPTION #2. Read Me. All of me.
…if you like monthly intuitive forecasts, read the Wild Goddess Reports.
…if you like diving deeply, transforming, and doing homework with no one nagging at you to do it, check out the Magical Mystical Goddess Voyage.
…if you want my irreverent take on mothering a kid with Down Syndrome, read my columns from The Imperfect Parent.
…if you want to journey with me through the first year I lived apart from my kids, read my columns from Literary Mama.
…if you can’t get enough and want to read EVERYTHING, and by everything I mean all my deeply personal, magical, dark, unedited thoughts plus a whole lot about how much I adore my soulmate, read my personal blog Juxtapositioning.
OPTION #3. Subscribe.
Also, you can get Tasty Bites. See the handy, cute form in the upper right corner of the page? Go on, I’ll wait.
Thanks for being here. I adore you.
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