Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Keep walking up that hill!

Sometimes, I get scared. I am in the midst of enjoying my day, and all of a sudden, something pressing will occur to me: a bill that I have due, an unexpected expense that I can't afford, a family commitment that I am worried about, a job expectation that I am not sure that I can fulfill. And, I feel my stomach tense up, my heart beat a bit faster, my muscles tense....... I get scared. Once that comes on, it is hard to stop the progession of it.

What I am learning to do, learning to do more proactively and consistently, is to relax, to say the word "relax" to myself, out loud or in my mind. Relax and breathe and go with the flow. The bottom line, we will always have a path that is not straight and flat. There are going to be hills, steep hills, gradual hills, rocks and cliffs, winding roads as our path. So, one step at a time, one foot in front of another, KEEP WALKING UP THAT HILL.

After all, it is only a hill. It is not forever. It may be uncomfortable, it may hurt our muscles, we may have to really stretch ourselves and work hard to get up it. We may have to sit and rest on the way. But, relax in the process. No matter what, we need to climb the hills to get to where we are going. So, why fight it? Why fret about it, stress ourselves out about it? Enjoy the scenery........

Sit down on a log. Listen to the quiet, to the birds, to the noise that is beauty in itself. Look around you: what do you see? What lessons or beauty is there right in front of you, on the road to greatness? Remember, it is ALWAYS about the journey, not the destination. Make it meaningful; make it beautiful; and get there in a relaxed way.

I used to feel tested, tried, why does the hard way have to be MY way, God? I got sick of it, got angry, got frustrated, got discouraged. Now, I try to look at each journey, each road, each uphill, and downhill path, each straight and flat path, as a opportunity to learn, to grow, to get into better shape, to challenge myself. The journey is an amazing one, and I don't want to miss one step of it by obsessing over the "what might happen" talk.

Walk with me......

Monday, June 2, 2008

Blogging for LGBT Families Day!

From what I understand, and this is the first I am hearing of it, mind you, this is the third annual Blogging for LGBT Families Day! I did not have much luck setting up the link for you all, but will try to do so within this entry, so you can check out all of the blogs that are dedicating part of their space today to writing about LGBT families.

This is a loaded concept in some ways. One of those ways is that it won't mean the same to me as it does to some of my beloved friends on Soulforce, or some of the members of our church, or even for some of our couple friends. For our family, our nuclear closer-than-close family, being an LGBT family means, among other things, that we are two life partners that decided we wanted to have a baby, and so we did. The rest in the ten years (so far) that have followed is herstory (we have a daughter). However, we know many persons, in 3D and in the cyber world, who have children from different circumstances, some that choose not to have children, and some that have not had them yet. Some who are single and seeking family among others in the LGBT community, the list goes on and on. So, this is to celebrate all of our families......

In honor of this day, I have decided to recycle a blog post of mine from a few weeks ago, that just gives you one reason why I have such adoration for my family. Why I feel so blessed. Why, if I had to do it all again, I would not change a thing. Even being a lesbian; it has come to be one of the greatest gifts of my life. I embrace, I revel in it, and I celebrate it as often as I can.

Here you have it: Car rides......

Car rides........
About four months ago, my daughter stopped wanting to take the bus to school in the morning. Initially, it seemed to be motivated by sleeping a bit late, or just not being in the mood to deal with all of the kids on there. Then, before we both knew it, I was driving her to school every day. Believe me, I don't mind; I rather enjoy our morning time together. It was just such a strange transition, from her wanting to go on her own on the bus, to wanting to be with me every morning that she could.When she was born, I got to be at home with her for three whole months, day in and day out. It was heaven; we would just do our thing, go out or stay in, play or watch tv, socialize with others or not; we were so happy to be together; of course, no words on her part could describe it then, but she was devoted and smitten already.Then, my partner was home with her full time after she was just a few months old. Because we only had one income after awhile, I worked as much as I could, sometimes late in the evenings, and the weekends. It was always so hard to leave them both, to go off and do what I needed to do for us, but not be able to be home with my family. As much as I loved my career, leaving our daughter was so hard.Then, she started wanting a ride to school every day a few months ago. And, what quality time it is. It is about a twenty minute drive to work, and we talk about everything from the weather, to her school day, to her teacher that she dreads, to her friends, and our family. Sometimes the conversations are so deep and soul searching, it makes me eternally grateful that we have raised her the way that we have; to speak up when something is wrong. Now, every day, I crave that time with her in the morning; it starts off my day so beautifully.To just add to this enhanced family time, I recently made a decision to give up my evening part time job; now, we have dinner together frequently during the week; we enjoy our extra time together, we talk and laugh and play and discuss. It is worth more to me than anything in this world.

Here is the link; sorry for the tedious nature of it.......


body language

I have spent most of my life coming to terms with the body that I live in. I can safely say that for the majority of my years, I have loathed the vessel. Too fat, too short, hair too wiry, too many veins showing on my legs, you name it, I have probably thought it about my body. In my today, I am slowly, but surely, coming to a peaceful existence with this body that my spirit inhabits, its quirks and details and all of the little, and big, parts that are uniquely mine. It is a beautiful work of art that I am in the process of gaining appreciation for.

What I am also learning to do, besides embrace my body, is to listen to the language of my body. Not so much about what my body language says to others, but rather what my body speaks to me about what is going on. You see, my relationship with my body and my spirit is reciprocal in nature; what affects my mind and spirit directly influences my body, and what invades or affects my physical being influences my thoughts, my soul, my heart.

When I am physically ill, I am now paying attention to that. I am infamous for ignoring symptoms, taking care of the needs of all of those around me, and leaving my needs to long last, sometimes to my own serious detriment. I am now listening to those physical cues: a headache, stomach ache, dizziness, and even though they do not occur often, I tune into them to take care of any physical need that may be going on. What I am also learning though, is that at times, those physical symptoms are a physical exemplification of what is going on in my head, in my heart: I am thinking anxious thoughts about money; I am nervous about a work event; I am missing my partner and my daughter; I feel sad about a circumstance. When I really tune into my body, I feel the tension in my belly, the stiffness of my neck.............it is then that I know that I need to calm my thoughts and get back to a peaceful center.

My body is so precise and amazing it what it holds in terms of knowledge; it possesses my vibrant, beating heart, to keep me going for yet another set of beautiful days; it keeps my limbs strong and flexible, so that I can build and cook and create and work and play; it keeps safe my brain so that I can continue to learn and experience and explore. So, who am I to NOT trust that it knows what it is doing? It is the storage unit for all that has occurred in my life, past and present. It has an exact memory. It is resilient and flexible and accomodating.

It is my friend, not my enemy.

I am going to give my body a great big hug!

Friday, May 30, 2008

Another beautiful phrase of wisdom.....

By Melody Beattie, from her book of affirmations, Journey to the Heart.

"We find fortune when we open our hearts and learn the secret of life."


Another beautiful phrase of wisdom.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

The beauty of divine love

I am almost constantly pondering lately on the doings of my life. In a relatively short period of time, about two years, my life has turned around almost completely. Sure, by the events and circumstances that have happened, by the relationships that I encountered, by the time that passed and the jobs that changed, that helps to describe the turnaround that I experienced. And, when I use the term turnaround, I mean, my head still feels like it is spinning at times because my life made so many twists and turns lately; the changes went from having been very gradual to everything kind of falling into place.

So, yes, those things all happened. But, there were even more deeply personal changes that occurred, that occurred within me. I felt changed, I felt moved...... I began to open up more, even though I always considered myself to be an open person, it was as if one day, my soul just completely revealed itself. As a coccoon opening up, to allow for the spreading of the wings of the beautiful butterfly (BTW, Vanessa means butterfly in French; how appropriate). I literally could feel my wings unfurling, spreading, showing their newfound colors.

I also felt like I found my voice, my REAL voice, which I had kept silent for most of my life. I have always had a big mouth, always been able to speak up for others, always able to express my opinion, but rarely did I feel totally at ease with speaking, openly, about who I am what I am about. My voice emerged. Some days in a whisper, some days in a roar.

My mind and my awareness has opened up in such a way that hardly anything escapes me. Colors are brighter, sounds are louder, music is sweeter, smells are stronger, and I feel alive and so capable. I still miss details, in such a hurry to take something in, but I am learning, boy am I learning. My mind feels more eager than ever to learn, to grow, to challenge, to read and gain knowledge.

I felt so alive I thought, all of those years of my life. But, I feel like much of me was in a deep, tranquil sleep. Sometimes it was fitful, sometimes restful, but never fully awake, alert and alive.

What do I attribute all of this to?

I have purposely and intentionally opened myself up to the wonders of the Universe. I have said a resounding "YES" to my receiving of divine love. The love of the universe embracing me; the love of self resounding within me and echoing out into my surroundings. The love for my fellow humans being shown and given freely. And, what makes this time so incredibly different, even though I have always enjoyed meeting others, chatting with others, serving others, is that I am doing it from my point of soul now; I really am listening to the tickings of my heart, in the same rhythm of the universe, and we are in sync, we are connected.

The power of that experience is nothing short of incredible.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Just because opportunity knocks.....

.......doesn't mean that we have to answer the door.

Not every opportunity is necessarily our opportunity.

Maybe we are in a tough situation; maybe our relationship is failing, and we meet someone who atttends to us, listens, and seems interested.

Maybe our job has been going poorly, and we hear about a job opportunity that sounds too good to be true. Sure, it isn't a job we would normally enjoy, but the money is good.

Maybe, we have heard about a new way to invest our money, even though it sounds kind of risky, the return could be incredible.

Sometimes, opportunity knocks.

Sometimes, it is better to not answer the door.

I know that this goes against many things that some of us have been taught. When opportunity knocks, answer. Take a chance. Don't miss a great opportunity. Invest now, benefit later.

And, there is not doubt that those opportunities will be beneficial to someone.

But, not every opportunity is an opportunity that is the right one for us.

Starting today, when opportunity knocks, instead of responding to the knock immediately, pause for a moment.

Instead, listen intently. Can you hear the grasshopper? Can you hear the sound of your own heartbeat? Sure, they aren't as loud as a knock or a doorbell, but they hold more firm answers to your future, to your dreams, than any knock on the door.

There are opportunities to be had for each one of us, and reasons why the knock on the door could bring some benefit to our lives. But, only in our hearts can we know for sure if it is the right thing for us or not.

We can't know fully based on advice from others, no matter how well meaning.

We can't know fully based on what a great opportunity it appears to be.

We can't know based on the short term gains.

We can only know by quieting ourselves, listening intently, and getting into step with the beating of our own heart, the calling of our own soul. We need to be listening hard enough and long enough to really know what the answers are for us.

I mean, we can all answer the door when it knocks; we have free will, it is always our choice.

And, no matter what, a lesson will be in store for us.

Are we ready to listen more closely, so that those decisions that we do make, feel more in sync with the rhythm of our lives?

Are you ready to ignore the knocks and listen quietly for the beat?

I dare you.......