I got upset this morning,
lost it with my kids,
felt guilty and ashamed.
I interpreted this event as a setback.
I spent some time wallowing in shame,
depression, the belief that I haven’t made
any progress at all.
Then I breathed.
Then the wisdom came.
I remembered that I’m human,
I make mistakes,
and now it’s time for a reset.
So I chose for the day to go better
from that point on.
I’m going in to the kids’ classes
for Valentine’s Day;
I’m going to help the kids celebrate,
make crafts, have fun.
I tied up some loose ends at home,
finished some projects that had been waiting.
No more dwelling in upset, in setbacks.
I’ve reset…now it’s time to keep moving forward.
The voice stayed with me
when the clock struck midnight;
it followed me into the new year.
It was quiet for a few hours,
letting me take in the new year…
But now it is saying, already,
You should be doing more.
You need to make phone calls,
you need to organize your house,
you need to earn more,
you need to plan for the future.
You could end up on the street.
You could lose everything.
Hurry up! No time to lose!
Now I want to know,
whose voice is this?
Of course I want to be responsible,
of course I want to take action,
of course I want to do the right thing.
But I don’t need a tyrant telling me what to do.
I don’t need a frightened, abused inmate
pushing me to be afraid too.
I’m ready for a new voice,
one that says,
Breathe. You’re doing just fine.
Let’s try this now.
You are not alone;
I’ll be with you every step of the way.
Everything is working out just fine.
You are safe.
You can trust me.
I got you.
I’m searching for that voice.
I’m wanting to see what my life will be like
when I listen to it and act from it.
May the voice of kindness rise up within me,
and may my ears and heart and mind
be open to receive its wisdom.
and so much to do.
My mind keeps heckling me,
I need to do this and I need to do that…
but I’m so tired.
I’ve been up since 4:30 am,
going since then,
and my body just wants rest.
But how will I get it all done?
I tell myself I love myself no matter what.
I try to believe myself.
I take another breath.
I remember that it can’t all get done at once.
I take another breath.
I write this poem.
I’ll celebrate this win,
remind myself it will be ok.
I’ll breathe again,
and figure out what’s next.
When you think you should’ve done better,
be gentle; allow yourself to try again.
Yes, be honest with yourself
and make clear choices about the next time,
but still, be gentle.
Would you admonish a toddler
for not knowing how to sprint a marathon?
I came to realize that so much of my life energy
was being poured into thinly disguised attempts to be seen,
heard, held, cherished, loved…
and these attempts never yielded the results I sought.
I asked myself why I was giving my power away like that.
I asked myself to cut it out already.
And then I asked myself,
Wait a minute…can I see myself?
Can I hear myself?
Can I hold myself?
Can I cherish myself?
Can I love myself?
And I discovered that yes,
yes I can.
When you are stuck
in doubt and fear
don’t stay there!
Take a deep breath
and reach out to your teachers.
You have them,
Reach out to the ones
who remind you who you really are,
the ones who hold you in the space
of lovingkindness, acceptance, compassion.
If you can’t think of anyone
who can do that for you right now,
then it’s time to do it for yourself.
Reach in to the teacher inside,
the one who remembers
that you have a purpose to live out
in this world of changing weather.
Reach in to the one
who knows how to breathe deeply,
to the one who gives you permission
to be exactly who you are right now,
and who knows how worthy you are
of loving and being loved.
Whether we reach out or we reach in
we will find rest and peace
in the space
of silent, clear awareness.
but a little more gently now,
to find the spark
within the spark
that will light
my soul on fire.
Your soul is already on fire.
Your fear thoughts dampen
your experience of it,
but the soul fire cannot be put out.
Trust you are
where you need to be.
there’s that feeling
that something is wrong,
there is something
I should be doing,
And then I remember,
will never stop.
I can befriend them,
I can accept them,
I can even love them,
but they’ll never disappear entirely…
and that’s ok.
I extend to my
will light the way back home
to the fire of my soul.