There is no losing or winning,
just staying asleep or waking up.
Every time I breathe consciously,
I wake up a little bit more.
I have more available to me in this moment,
more to feel, and see, and touch,
more to embody, embrace and become.
I let the breath move through me.
When I feel a difficult feeling,
I ventilate it, and let it pass through too.
Sometimes I don’t react to the feeling,
I just breathe it.
And I remember
it’s not about losing or winning,
but staying asleep or waking up.
I choose to awaken.
Last night, something happened.
Was it sitting in a healing circle
with a vibrant group
of beloved colleagues,
Was it the cacao
administered in a ceremonial way,
calling on the four directions,
ancestors, guardians and guides?
Was it my posture as I sat there,
hands over my heart, swaying,
eyes closed, as I listened?
Had everything in my life
simply prepared me for that moment,
I caught a glimpse of what is possible?
Whatever it was,
I came home,
and although it was late,
I was inspired.
I started making lists
of things I could make and offer,
to bring me closer to my goal
of financial autonomy.
I had visions of my creations
delighting and inspiring the hearts
of countless beloveds.
I actually had to make myself go to sleep…
I was buzzing with ideas,
I am truly free to be me,
and life is full, FULL of possibility.
for the better.
Up half the night with a sick child,
scrubbing puke out of the carpets,
attempting not to resent my ex
for leaving me
to deal with moments like these
on my own.
How can I tweak my mindset
when the moment
is so obviously difficult?
Any way you look at it,
a pukey carpet is smelly and gross.
How do you find spiritual wisdom
in disgusting moments?
I tried to tell myself
It is a privilege to clean up my daughter’s throw-up.
Yes I did.
I thought about childless couples
who would’ve paid dearly
many times over
to have a son or daughter of their own,
who would’ve been glad to be in my shoes,
scrubbing mess out of the carpet,
just to know they had a kid to love and raise.
It strikes me now in retrospect,
that it wasn’t so much the content of my mind,
but the act of attempting to shift
from feeling exhausted and overburdened
to the recognition of my blessings—
however disgustingly they were disguised—
that might bear beautiful fruit in the future.
Who knows what can grow
of experiences like these,
when they are met with the awareness
that there is always another way?
Miracles are everywhere.
How many you experience
on how open you are.
I feel so closed.
I don’t know how to be open.
Can you breathe?
Well then, let’s breathe.
You’ll open naturally
if you breathe.
This is taking too long.
Where are the miracles?
Ah. I see.
Your impatience is what blocks you.
You must trust
with all your heart.
Trust? Why should I trust?
Nothing ever works out in my life.
Ah. Is that true, my friend?
Nothing works out?
Well, I can’t convince you otherwise.
Maybe I can’t help you after all.
Who am I to talk you out of your misery,
when you fight with every fiber of your being
to keep it close to you?
Let’s talk again
when you’re ready to be happy.
You’ll have to die first though.
You’ll have to die
to who you thought you were
so that you can be reborn
to who you might be.
But you must be brave.
Most won’t tolerate such an initiation.
Let me know when you’re ready.
I’ll be here.
And then a friend sent me a link
to spiritual teacher Matt Kahn’s
video entitled The Pain of Loss,
and it rocked my world.
I thought of how I had been
trying to escape my pain,
seeing it as evidence of failure,
and here was someone saying
that our bigges mistake is
our attempt to bypass the pain
so that we can continue on our path.
Instead, if we can see that our pain IS the path,
if we can see that
our devastation leads to transformation,
we’ll join with the Divine as co-creators,
and live into our fullest destiny
as embodied masters.
What the what?
So it is in my enduring
that I come to know my greatest strength?
I can allow the Universe to
turn me upside down and shake me out
and I can emerge on the other side
more loving, compassionate and clearer
than ever before?
I’m going to go and digest this now.
Thanks for listening.
PS I would love to hear all about your stories of transformation following great loss and deep pain. Have you learned how to see pain as a great teacher? Have you learned to embrace painful experiences as opportunities for profound growth? How long did your initiation take? How long did you stay in the crucible, allowing life to burn away what you no longer needed for the journey ahead? I welcome anything you’re willing to share. Knowing that I’m not alone in my profound suffering has helped me realize that I’m part of this big human family, and I’d like to think that somehow in the sharing of our stories we’re collectively helping the human race to grow and evolve.
What causes the autumn wind
to rush through the forest
stirring the leaves,
breaking their fragile connection
to the spent moments of yesterday,
that they might flutter down to the earth
and experience new life in their death and decay?
It is in their letting go of the past
that they receive the promise of this new moment.
They cannot hold their form in death;
it melts away and feeds new life,
and this is the way of all things.
In the autumn of your life,
can you turn to look
at how you’ve been nourished by the Tree of Life?
Can you gracefully surrender the diversions of youth,
breaking free of your bonds, fluttering down,
allowing your form to be used by the earth,
making way for the promise of what will come?
It’s a new day,
and I’m going to change my tune.
No more gloom and doom,
there’s no room
for that old story
in the new book of my life.
I’m getting it done.
I’m taking action!
I’m going to forge ahead
and figure this out!
Find a job!
Find a place to live!
Feel stable in every way!
Be the powerful, courageous woman
I was born to be,
set a good example for my kids,
wake up, stand up, look up
and contribute more to my community
and to my world!
But first, I’m going to take a nap.