The creative outlet of Anthony Munkholm: thanks for reading

Healing through my words:

Life doesn't give you the people you want,
it gives you the people you need:
to love you, to hate you, to make you, to break you, & to make you the person you were meant to be. -unknown

Love can and will come to those who still believe in it. Hope is the key. Even when faced with disappointment love will still find a way. Even after betrayal love will still knock on your door. Love will come to those who have been hurt before. I will never give up on love. I will even love those who no longer love me. Love is all there is and all there ever will be. -me

I believe I have been given an opportunity to share my successes and my struggles, my up's and my down's, the good and the bad with those who find their way to my blog. I feel I have been given a gift to write. I feel in my heart part of my gift to the world comes through my words. My greatest joy comes through expressing myself here. I write for myself but I feel compelled to share it with you too. I believe in love, compassion, and understanding which I share here.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

My Journey Back To God Part VI

Today I have made peace with much of my troubled past. At times I still struggle, sometimes I know that it is much easier to preach then it is to practice. But I am strong and everytime I struggle I am creating the opportunity to create an even brighter future. I am not always Mr. Happy Go Lucky but I have been able to more and more stop myself and ask myself one simple question, “How does this make me feel?”

Our feelings are the greatest gift and tool that we have. They are an indication of how we are doing and what things we can expect to come into our future. Honoring your feelings and dealing with them the moment they arise is the key to happiness.

Do not ignore your feelings for in the ignorance of our feelings we open ourselves up to unwanted things experiences and circumstances. Your soul always knows what it is that we truly want and by going within yourself first and seeing how you feel about a certain situation, person or circumstance you will be guided to your highest truth. And in this highest truth you will find that God is always there and is willing to lend a helping hand.

I think my wife said it very well, "I think everyone makes it harder than it needs to be, its not some big mystery... God loves everyone unconditionally. Mistakes are to be expected and life will be difficult at times. Be patient, other times life requires big decisions, and they may be difficult. There is no point in feeling sorry for yourself, pick yourself up and do what needs to be done to make your life better. Thats all it is, its no big secert, be nice, be generous and persist with patience."

When I began to experience the migraines on a regular basis it never occurred to me that this could be my soul’s way of telling me that there are a lot of things that you are hiding from. My soul did not want me to experience ill health but after years and years of ignoring all the signals the universe was trying to give me the energy finally got too great. Ignoring my feelings of unworthiness caused the energy to continue to build up inside of me. When I started dealing with the problems from my childhood I actually began to get some relief.

The other crucial part for me in relieving myself of this ill health was declaring to myself and the universe that I indeed created these migraines. Not only did I create them but they were truly a great gift from God. For if I never started to suffer ill health what else would it have taken in order for me to deal with my true feelings. Even docotors are starting to see the connections between the way people think and feel and the overall health they experience. I no doubt believe that much of the disease present in the world today could be greatly improved by focusing more attention on people's emotions instead of simply the physical symptoms.

I am so grateful for the migraines that I had to deal with, the fighting of my parents and my time in the Navy for without those experiences would I have ever found my pathway back to God?

The coincidence is too perfect to ignore. As I began to improve the way I felt about things the universe brought to me: the circumstances, the situations and the people in my life that I needed I began to heal. When I was sick all of the time it seemed as if I was surrounded by people who were either sick or were constantly feeling sorry for themselves. As I strived to get healthier those people did not seem to come around anymore.

The same principle applies to my mother. She was very manipulative with me, often taking advantage of my innocence. When I came to terms with this and took my power back we were able to build an entirely new relationship. We often laugh together, have great conversations and most of all I finally feel that love and want to give the love back.

My thoughts without a doubt are the basis of what my life has become. I have taken a new approach to life, an approach that involves stepping back and honoring my feelings in every situation. Debbie Ford’s book The Dark Side of The Light Chasers offers some great techniques and exercises to help with this. I recognize just how detrimental a pessimistic approach to life can be. We as a society have been so programmed to look at the worst of a situation rather than the best. We have been taught to hate more than love. We have been taught to be afraid rather than to trust, in these beliefs, we have sacrificed our ability to truly find happiness. There is an easier way to God then a life filled with struggle. Although seeing the divine in even the worst of times offers even greater gifts from our soul.

We have the abilities to live the most glorious life one can imagine. God is here to help us fulfill our every desire, our every wish, and our every dream. God is here to help us understand that we are all truly connected, that no one is every truly alone. For how could you ever be alone when you come from and are forever connected to God.

This concept has lead me to walk a different path in life. For if we are all one does the potential to love each other not return the greatest benefit back on to me. I have chosen to go forth and always try to find the best in any situation (at times I still lose this one). I am willing to find things to feel good about even if there are more things to feel bad about. I have made peace with my enemies and told those closest to me that I love them with all of my heart. My life has a new purpose, I am here to work as a messenger of God. I am here to carry a torch to bring others to this light I see.

I am no longer afraid of life for I know I am never alone. God has sent me many angels to help me along this path and I am grateful for every single one of them.

God has spoken to me and has shown me the way to him. The power of meditation is a tool none of us should ever ignore. For if you ever seek your highest truth you will find it within the stillness of your mind.

In the end we will all find our own pathway back to God for no one loses in this game, we are all headed to the same place. Life is here for us to embrace and enjoy, life is suppose to be fun. Therefore judge not what others are doing for we as individuals do not have the ability to know the path of another’s soul. Do your best to love and be loved for after all are greatest gift from God is having the ability to do just that.

The End

A special thanks to a few very important people:

To Meredith: words only go so far and I know I have made mistakes but I am forever grateful for the gifts you have given me and for the love you have shown me even in my darkest hour.

To Dr. Eisen: I do not even know what to say except Thank you! I am so grateful to you and everything you have given me. You really are an angel!
Check out her website at you will not regret it.

To Dr. Leonard: Thank you for making my health troubles your health troubles. Thanks for giving me the belief that I could indeed heal my body. I am forever grateful.

And to my wonderful family, mom, dad, my wonderful sisters and great friends thanks for being you and always doing your best to be who you are, I love you all.

Thank you everyone for your continuted support and reading of my blog, I will continue to do my best to write about things that mean a lot to me and my only desire is that they also may serve of some benefit to those who find their way to my words. Namaste!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

My Journey Back To God Part V

I had been practicing meditation for about a year before I was introduced to any of these new ways of thinking. I never had much of an experience with meditation, I usually would just end up chasing my thoughts around in a circle for a few minutes and then walk away. In Conversations With God it suggests that in order to truly know God you must go within. So with a strong intention I decided to test the concepts of these books and began meditating on a consistent basis, every morning and every evening. After a few days of trying and not making much of progress I was not sure if I was meditating correctly.

Then one evening while I was walking up the stairs and doing my best to try to talk to God I heard the words clear as day “Are you sure you are ready?” Suddenly a feeling of comfort and what I describe as pure love, the greatest love I had every felt filled every fiber of my body. In an instant I saw my life flash before my eyes. I saw myself as a child in my first house where the fights between my parents first started, I relieved my first sexual encounter, I visualized myself in Afghanistan scared and alone and it capped off with a glimpse of what I now perceive to be my future.

Such vivid images, it was as if I was watching a movie of my life. I saw the energy that is used to form what we perceive to be our physical reality. I saw the energy that was part of something so great words cannot describe it. I saw how we have been gifted this incredible ability to touch, taste, smell, see and hear.

It was wonderful the clarity that had come from that moment, the feeling of being alone suddenly left me. The unfolding of my life had become so obvious to me, no longer did I question why I grew up in a household filled with verbal violence. No longer did I feel ashamed for losing myself in a drug haze for years. No more was I angry with the military for sending me into two war zones. After that moment I often found myself able to just let go while meditating and allow the Universe to show me what I had been asking for. From a broader perspective, from a deep willingness to question the unknown did I find what I have been looking for all my life, I found myself and I found God.

On that day my prayers were answered and I talked to the divine. We did not talk in the format we as people are accustomed to. We had an exchange of feelings, I was given a very powerful sense of clarity. An ultimate sense of just knowing, knowing that I am loved, knowing that God has always been there for me and a belief that everything in my life is perfect just as it is.

That day I did not find God in a church, I did not find her in a book as many have, I found him within me. I found that day that the path to God is different for everyone and that God is big enough to walk each of our paths with us.I discovered that there are as many ways to God as their are people on this planet.

Embracing this idea rather than trying to deny it is when a sense of love and security filled my entire body. The feeling was so profound I could not deny the truth it held behind it. God is not this thing or this person that sits in the heaven and watches down on us. God is an experience, a knowing, a feeling so strong no other description would fit. God is trust, a trust that when you ask for something you will always have it. I no longer felt separate from God but felt and saw that I was a tiny piece to a much larger puzzle. I began to understand just how big the statement “We are all one” really was.

This knowing allowed me for the first time in my life to relax, the anxiety that I have been dealing with on a regular basis diminished greatly. I did not need a medication to control my mind,I needed a willingness to admit that help has always been there for me and I simply needed to allow it.

I now know I have the power and ability to control my mind and have freed myself from the vices that so many often find themselves dependent on. By admitting that I had created my own reality I was able to take ownership of it and then change it.

The moments that make up my life happened in the exact way they needed to in order for my soul to realize its fullest potential. We as humans we must experience the highs and lows in order to declare to the Universe which we prefer. How could I truly experience love if love was the only thing I ever knew. I no longer feel that my mother does not love me, I know that she did her very best to give me the love that she was capable of. My mother gave me the greatest gift of all, from the time I was a child and the things I went through were all part of the Divine’s plan to help me realize fully that I am truly loved and always have been.

When I was feeling so depressed and so unloved my soul called out to the heavens show me love and God answered my prayers. It was part of the not feeling loved, in feeling depressed and alone that I was able to guide myself to what I so desperately yearned for. Every situation, every person I have ever met is all part of a beautifully crafted maze that my soul is a part of in order to find love. In this feeling of love I am able to see the perfection of the universe.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

My Journey Back To God Part IV

Unwilling to simply hope my headaches would go away I accepted Dr. Eisen’s offer to do an EFT session over the phone. Not knowing much about EFT my father suggested I look around on her website ( and get an idea of what I was going to be getting myself into. On her website I read such wonderful stories of people who had with Dr. Eisen’s help found the ability to forgive an abusive father, get over a terrible accident and simply start over in life. I read a quote that stated, “fifteen minutes with Dr. Eisen was more useful to me than 15 years of traditional therapy.” After reading that I was convinced that it would at least be worth my time to try it.

Little did I know I was about to have one of the most powerful moments of my life during our phone session. Dr. Eisen gave me the tools, the knowledge and the belief in myself that not only am I worthy of being loved but I am love. During our session she took me on a roller coaster ride of emotions. At times I was so sad and scared I could not stop the tears from rolling down my face. At other times the rage and anger that she tapped into even took me by surprise. I had trouble accepting that I could have so much anger built up towards my mother. As the session progressed we continued to work our way towards better thoughts, better circumstances and most of all better feelings.

Dr. Eisen had a way of getting me to go back and face my past. We tapped into every feeling I had ever bundled up and it felt like an explosion had occurred within me. It was as if a million pounds had been lifted of my shoulders instantly. What clarity she helped me find, such incredible realizations began to come over me. I started to understand my mother from her perspective.

I began to see that in my mother’s eyes she felt she was doing the best she could. I began to have sympathy for my mother knowing that she too did not have the greatest childhood. Most importantly I truly believed for the first time that my mother has and always will love me. Dr. Eisen had me take a few really deep breaths and I noticed right away not only did my head not hurt but I was no longer feeling sorry for myself. Nor was I giving my attention to those unwanted things in my life that offered me no benefit. It was like a switch had been flipped in my head from negative to positive, almost immediately I started looking at life in a different way. A way that allowed me to no longer feel like a victim but instead a person who had control over the way he feels.

After our session was over, she instructed me it may be best to just lay in my bed and rest. I felt so drained like I had just run a marathon and yet so excited. Dr. Eisen gave me a great gift in that hour, she help me see the reasons I was getting the things in my life whether they were good or bad. She helped me see how powerful my feelings are and how important it is to acknowledge them. Bundling up your feelings will without a doubt have very negative consequences on the individual. A famous man once said that 99 percent of all illness is related to stress, after that day I could not agree more.

I now began to see clearly why my life had unfolded the way it did. I began throwing around the ideas in my mind, “how could I have ever felt loved by another when I had no love for myself?” “Is it possible that I created my reality in this very way?” “Is it possible that the events of my life were necessary to help bring me to a greater understanding? Could it be that the universe brought these circumstances, events and thoughts in order for me to find my way back to God?” Suddenly I was thinking on a very deep level, feelings were the basis of this experience. I felt guided by an amazing energy inside me, an energy that is so hard to explain but is so wonderful to feel.

Thirsty for knowledge I called Dr. Eisen the next day and did my best to put into words the feelings and thoughts that I was having. Dr. Eisen was not surprised and recommended I try reading a couple of books one called Conversations with God by Neale Donald Walsch and the other was Ask and It is Given by Esther and Jerry Hicks.

As fast as my car would take me I raced to the nearest book store and began reading these mind blowing books. What insight these books offered me, what inspiration I felt as I turned every page. Could the basis of these books, the message We Are All One truly be the way the world works? Is it possible that we truly are the creator of our own experiences? That in essence we really do get what we think about it? I had never heard of the Law Of Attraction before which was introduced to me in these books and it states, “that which is like unto itself is drawn.” As simple as this statement appears to be, when I would meditate on the concept I began to clearly see how I was drawing everything into my life. From the headache that I hated so much or the meeting of my amazing wife all my feelings and thoughts are the reasons everything in my life came to be. These are all things I had asked for and therefore the universe answered me each and every time.

Monday, July 5, 2010

My Journey Back To God Part III

The Navy was good for me. It taught me discipline, how to work hard and most of all it got me away from the fighting. For the first time in my life I was on my own and free from the turmoil I was used to. Of course enlisting in the military after 9/11 I should have seen it coming the day our commanding officer came out and said, “Our mission has changed, we will all be going to Iraq and Afghanistan over the course of the next 3 years.” My heart sunk very quickly but I stood tall at attention taking the news in trying to act as if it was no big deal.

After serving in Iraq and Afghanistan and seeing violence I feel no one should ever have to witness I decided I would serve my five year obligation only. The Navy changed me. I did not want to admit it at the time but I was not the same person I was before I enlisted. Being the type of guy who never faces his true feelings I was now dealing with the issues from my past along with the mental and physical challenges of suffering a debilitating back injury and the nightmares of two wars. All of the stress was taking its toll on me and on my marriage. At times I would get so angry with my wife because my back would not stop hurting, or because she would try to talk to me about the war. These stresses would blow up into fits of fury. Eventually my back healed and my wife and I were able to take comfort in that. She continued to encourage me to seek out some help to deal with the PTSD label the military had assigned me. I once again refused help and our troubled marriage did not improve.

To add fuel to the fire my health was in jeopardy again, I began to suffer from intense migraines. I had been to numerous doctors, tried several medications and become an expert of self diagnosis with every possible cause. The more attention I paid to my migraines, the worse they seemed to get. I often would find myself lost in my own self loathing of poor me. I remember several times a day I would ask myself why me? Have I not been through enough already? I once again took my anger out on God, shouting to the heavens, cursing his very name. I was now more convinced than ever that there was no God.

My father would call me often, and he could hear the hurting in my voice as I explained to him that I was excited that my back no longer hurt but now I was getting incredibly painful headaches. He became increasingly worried about my health and had suggested I try something called EFT or emotional freedom technique with his new girl friend Dr. Kim Eisen.

I was very reluctant at first and did not believe that a “witch doctor” could help me with my health. My dad explained to me how she had helped him finally make some peace with his own childhood. My father comes from a family of alcoholics and lost his own mother to a house fire. After my father had worked with Dr. Eisen for a while I began to see the change in him as he ventured out to visit me in California. During his visit my father for the first time in his life openly displayed his love for me and as a result our relationship has blossomed into a beautiful friendship. I am truly grateful for the changes in my father but more importantly I was inspired to deal with my own demons. I was still hesitant to call Dr. Eisen but at this point I figured I had nothing left to lose. The doctors basically were telling me they did not know what to do to help me and that “generally people will outgrow these headaches and we hope they do not come back.”

Saturday, July 3, 2010

My Journey Back To God Part II

I was so angry with God for putting me in this situation. Living in this household where fighting happened almost every day. After my mother appeared to no longer need me I retreated to my room. Content on making God understand just how truly frustrated I was I reached for my Bible and in one foul swoop I tore it in half.

This moment felt so empowering to me. Why should I worship a God that allows a child to witness and go through such horrible things? Why was I so unworthy of love? What was wrong with me? These questions lead me to a complete dismissal of all faith and I decided that there was no God. In my eyes believing there was no God was the only answer. I had prayed so many times to God to end this fighting. I even tried bargaining with God to no appeal. I made unrealistic promises such as I will never get angry again if you just make the fighting stop. The fighting never did stop. My anger and hate for myself and God continued to grow.

I constantly craved attention and with a mother who was so caught up in the soap opera that was her life affection was hard to come by. A realization had come to me at a very young age, when I was hurt or sick my mother would give me the attention that I so craved. I often found myself in the emergency room. As a child I broke many bones. I often would even inflict pain on myself just to get attention. I would go to extremes such as rubbing my knuckles into the sidewalk back and forth causing the skin to tear and my fingers to bleed. I loved the sensation of pain, as it helped remind that I was alive.

I had a stint where I experimented with any and all drugs I could get my hands on. I was completely reckless and had no concern for my health and or well-being. The only thing I knew for sure was that when I hurt my body at least for that moment my mother would smother me with affection. I was on a self destructive path that appeared to have no end in sight.

I finally hit rock bottom when I decided to get into a fist fight with my step-father. After the dust settled I was told to be out of the house immediately and was to not come back. Lost and feeling utterly alone I did the only thing I knew how, I scored another bag and got lost in the haze of being high.

With feelings of suicide filling my every thought I was convinced that taking my own life was the only way out. I rehearsed it in my head so many times how I would do it. I was going to drive my car into oncoming traffic on the freeway. I thought to myself,” that’ll teach them for not loving me.” For some reason I could never truly bring myself to follow through with my plan. Something inside me kept telling me that this was not it. Not sure what to do but needing to get out of a tough situation I decided to enlist in the United States Navy.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

My Journey Back To God

A short story by Anthony Munkholm
(My short story consists of 6 parts and I will release one part every few days)

Dedicated to my beautiful wife who has stood by my side while I have embarked on this incredible journey that has forever changed my life.

Part I.

A house filled with anger and confusion is the basis of my life. A fire burning inside me so hot, so filled with rage that I swallowed it again because I know of no other release. I reach for my notebook, an oversized black sharpie, and begin to write in giant letters, “I HATE YOU.” I try to turn my music up to drown out the noise but it is too overpowering. I was doing my best to get lost in my thoughts frantically scribbling on paper. “I hate you. You are so stupid. Of course no one loves you.” This became the basis of my journal, statements made to myself as an affirmation that I was indeed utterly worthless.

In the kitchen the circus had started earlier than usual today. ”You do not really love me, you just play games with your love, you take it and you give it.” My mother is doing her best to plead her case to my step-father but he is stuck in his own vortex of rage. Back and forth they go, “You are crazy, you should be locked up in the mental ward,” screams my step-father. I have heard this argument so many times I could practically predict what would be said next. The tension in the house continues to build, my sisters hide out in their room dealing with the madness in their own way. “I want a divorce,” cries my mother as she veraciously pounds her feet up the stairs and slams the door to her bedroom.

I take a breath and hope the insanity has stopped at least for the moment. Retreating to my notebook I continue to project my feelings into the only thing that would listen to me, my journal. It was hard to write as I could hear the whimpers of desperation from my mother through the walls. Into her room I would go to do my best to try to console her. I would look her in the eyes but she was not there, she was lost in a maze of anger and sadness. My step-father had retreated to his office. He would go there so he could be alone for a few minutes of peace. With the two separated from each other, quiet whispers begin to fill the house. My sisters and I take comfort in this stillness, even if only for a second.

The silence does not last long, my mother refuses to let go of the fury swirling inside her. She truly believes with all of her heart that she has been the victim of another rotten relationship. She puts on her shoes and storms out to my step father’s office. The door is locked, so she starts frantically pounding on the door. Banging so aggressively against the door, you would have thought the garage was on fire. I watch through the kitchen window as my mother and step father argue back and forth through the door about who has wronged the other one more. It was like a display of insanity towards each other. The words that were said were so terrible I dare not repeat them here. Witnessing this I had to sit back and wonder did these two every truly love each other? What could possibly be so bad? These two who at one time seemed to be so happily in love have reduced themselves to the most basic form of name calling.

I began to cry as the day’s events continue to unravel. My mother comes back in the house and sees the tears that I was fighting to hold back. She tells me that she loves me, but her words mean nothing to me as I feel completely alone. I plead with her to stop fighting with my step-father. I beg her to stop the madness and just try to calm down. It was no use. I might as well have been talking to the wall. My mother reaches for another cigarette and lights it up. The cigarette appears to be the only thing that she truly cares about. Grasping to it so tightly it almost crumbles in her hands. She is completely oblivious to the influence she is having on her kids and the example that she is setting. She is so concerned with herself she does not even realize that she is tearing apart the very family that she has created. I once again was pushed to the way side so that my mother could continue to deal with what appeared to be a never ending struggle. At this point I felt so alone, I had given up on myself and I had given up on God.