Tag Archives: acceptance

Free

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Suddenly I recognized
I didn’t have to worry anymore,
I didn’t have to struggle anymore,
I didn’t have to prove myself to anyone,
I didn’t have to fight to survive.
Suddenly I realized that peace is here, now.
I didn’t have to change anything,
fix anything,
improve anything,
heal anything,
forgive anything,
understand, analyze, anticipate,
modify, regret, like, dislike,
or hope for anything.
I didn’t have to communicate anything.
Suddenly I realized that this moment
holds the key to everything
and there is nothing lacking.
And for the first time I felt free.

Our Greatest Teacher

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If healing were easy
everyone would be doing it
but there is no switch,
no magic wand
no quick fix.
And it doesn’t work to focus on the surface,
shining up the exterior
while the interior is full of darkness;
the light must shine everywhere.
Of course,
it doesn’t work to replace one extreme
with another either.
It’s not about eradicating the darkness
so that there is only light;
we learn through contrast,
and the darkness has its place
in this great wheel of life.
Balance is the key,
and acceptance that everything changes.
If we could drop the unreasonable expectations
and open our hearts to what is alive in this moment,
we might discover that the antidote to our pain
lives within the pain itself.
Our adversity is our greatest teacher.

Is This Acceptance?

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I’ve arrived at that barely functional place
at the end of a long, busy day.
My body feels ready for sleep,
my mind is surprisingly calm.
I float in and out of awareness
that this house I’m living in
is no longer my house
and my children and I will have to leave
someday very soon.
The feeling isn’t as terrifying or devastating
as it was before…
Have I come to a place of acceptance?

Beyond the Routine

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I’m still working on simply accepting this moment.
It may be a life long practice,
because as I really pay attention to it,
I notice that there is very little about this moment
that is like anything I’ve ever experienced before.
In fact, this moment is completely different
from anything I’ve ever lived…
and I realize that my mind that wants familiarity
was just painting a picture of the routine
over what I was living in reality,
and calling forth routine perceptions and behaviors
in response to the picture my mind has painted.
Every second that ticks by is a miracle.
Am I available to experience it?
This moment is a huge gift.
My children are changing, I am changing,
the weather is changing,
our circumstances are changing,
everything is constantly in flux.
Maybe I remove the blindfold
and see that beyond the routine
there is a fieild of infinite possibility.
May I awaken to my true nature there.

Did I Offend You?

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Oh, don’t mind me,
I’m just over here trying to figure out
how to leverage my gifts, talents and abilities
so that I can create a financially sustainable livelihood
doing what I love.
Oh, I’m sorry, did I just offend you?
Does it bother you when I suggest
that it’s possible to spend time working
at something you love?
Do you think it’s impossible,
preposterous even,
to spend time working
in deeply satisfying ways,
bringing your unique talents to the world
in ways that will serve and inspire others?
Oh, you think I should just shut up and give in?
Does my mere presence upset you?
Do I remind you of something you once had,
but lost a long time ago?
Yeah, I do feel a need to figure this out.
No, I’m not okay with just shutting up
and getting any old job
to make ends meet.
I have two kids to raise,
and I need to show them what is possible
when you hold to a greater vision.
I don’t want them growing up thinking
that adulthood means you sell your soul to the system
so that you can scramble along
frantically attempting to acquire
society’s symbols of success,
meanwhile feeling dead inside.
Dead inside is no way to live.
Pardon me while I blaze a new trail.
No, I don’t know where I’m going,
I have no clue…
I’m making this path one step at a time.
Does my weirdness scare you?
Yeah, I want to be happy…call me crazy.
Not just with a drink in my hand
or a man by my side
or for a week of vacation once a year—
I want to be really, truly happy,
from the inside out.
Do you find my lack of adherence to social convention
absolutely galling?
Good.
I don’t care what you think about me anyway.

As I go through this extremely uncomfortable period of imminent homelessness, I’ve had multiple people get pretty huffy with me, instructing me to take a job even if I don’t like the job. They seem to be insulted by my conviction that I can figure out a way to make money AND be happy while doing it…so insulted, in fact, that they seem to want to discourage me from even attempting to figure out an alternative to what they’ve suggested.

As I become more accustomed to living with uncertainty, I’m starting to see people’s resistance to my vision as a sign that I’m really getting somewhere. At the same time, I’m wanting encouragement and support, not criticism and judgment. It’s lonely over here, blazing a new trail throught the wilderness of my chaotic circumstances.

I don’t want people telling me I’m being unreasonable. I could reason with them that my kids are watching every move I make and they are learning from all of my choices.. When they’re older and they describe me, I’d love to hear them say, “Yeah, my mom took her crappy circumstances and turned them into an opportunity to grow, change and evolve. She taught me that I could accomplish great things by believing in myself and loving my dreams. She showed me that I was free to become anything I wanted to be. Her example helped me to own my own power to create a life in alignment with my truest self.”

The alternative would break my heart: “Yeah, my mom worked so hard. She barely ever saw us and was tired and angry all the time. She sacrificed so much for us. I wish we could’ve spent more time together…”

Ah well, only time will tell how this current difficulty will be resolved. My task seems to be cultivating a sense of okayness around all the chaos and uncertainty and going with the flow of life. If it were easy and fun, everyone would be doing it. It’s a tough job, but someone’s gotta do it. It may as well be me…

The Space Between Terror and Peace

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When faced with imminent homelessness
and being met with obstacle after obstacle
to securing a home for myself and my kids—
what real choice is there?
I can choose to be present and experience peace,
or I can choose to focus on the future
and feel terror.
The choice seems so easy, doesn’t it?
Just stay present. Just choose peace.
But then there is the reality of being human,
having been trained to avoid the present moment
for most of my life.
Yes, even as a yoga teacher,
even with my daily meditation practice
(over seven years now of daily meditation)
I still find it extraordinarily difficult
just to remain present.
There are so many ways I’ve learned
to just not be here. To just not feel.
I see that my body has been terrified for a long time,
perhaps since childhood…
perhaps I carry the terror of ancestors
struggling to survive,
a terror encoded in my genes
that no amount of therapy could cure.
My task becomes a reconditioning
of this body-mind,
to retrain my nervous system to udnerstand
that in this moment, I am safe.
In this moment, all is well.
Until I am able to gain more footing
on this path of peace,
I’ll need to be content with the space
between peace and terror,
and reconcile the one who is afraid
with the one who soothes, reassures, calms and holds.
God, let me find the One within me
that knows just what to do and what to say
to always bring me back home to the ground of being,
this moment where PEACE IS within me,
despite the chaos the swirls around on the outside.

Self-Love + Serenity = A Miracle (Hopefully)

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Even though in the past
I interpreted challenges like these
as evidence that I was somehow deficient,
today I deeply love and accept myself
and I am willing to see myself
with the eyes of love.
Even though I find myself
uncertain of my future,
my AC has gone belly up,
and now the outlets powering
my refrigerator and freezer
are no longer working,
today I deeply love and accept myself
and I am wiling to see myself
with the eyes of love.
Even though I never thought I’d be here,
never thought that at the age of 42
I’d struggle with anxiety and depression,
wondering where I’ll live
and how I’ll make ends meet
for myself and my children,
today I deeply love and accept myself
and I am willing to see myself
with the eyes of love.
I am willing to change and grow.
I am willing to learn new skills.
I am willing to stand in my power.
I am willing to shift this situation.
Now, God, grant me serenity
to accept the things I cannot change,
courage to change the things I can
and wisdom to know the difference.