Getting back into my “LIFE” after 2 weeks of being away takes some doing, or shall I say some BEING. I am so grateful to be home to paradise and to my sweetheart, Larry. Before I left to visit my family on the mainland, my INTENTION was that my trip would flow with peace, ease and grace and that I would get into the FLOW of activities immediately. I didn’t want to give into “jet lag” with traveling 5000 miles across the ocean and being too tired to spend time with my family. My prayer was answered because I felt great and didn’t waste any time getting into things. I visited my son, daughter-in-law and new grandson in Connecticut and then went kayaking with my children and grandchildren the next day.
I had a wonderful visit with my family and girlfriends. My 4 children attended the annual family reunion at my daughter, Mary’s, farm and my son, Tim commented, “This was the best one yet” and I agreed. I held my new grandson, River, for the first time and what a blessing that was. I had so much fun with my grandsons: Jarred who will be 2 years old, Zach who will be 25 and Josh who is 20.
It was a busy time and the 2 weeks flew by. Although my life on Maui is much slower and relaxed, I was able to keep up with all of the activities, but was often in bed by 9 p.m. My daughter, Mary, and I gave a retreat for 20 women at her farm. It was a powerful day of healing and transformation. We look forward to giving another one next year. We also celebrated the grand opening of “The Sage Clinic” (naturopathic clinic) which was started by Mary and Naturopath Dr. John McGonagle.
When I returned home to Maui a few days ago, I wanted to “jump back into my life” and not “waste“ any time. There was so much I wanted to do; answer emails, get pictures developed, call friends, follow-up with women on the retreat, write thank-you notes, write blog, unpack suitcase and on and on. I quickly recognized that it didn’t take me long to get back into my “DOING” mode. Perhaps I feel more in control and more powerful when I am in the DOING mode and have a long list of things to accomplish. Of course, there is nothing wrong with doing, but FIRST THINGS FIRST.
As I prayed about what “TO DO” next, I heard God say, “I want you to relax and just BE.” I asked myself, “Did I think BEING was just wasting precious time?” Time is a gift God has given us and it is up to us to do what is best for ourselves. By the grace of God and my willingness to listen to Spirit, I was able to relax and take care of myself. I took several naps, sat outside and enjoyed the breeze, flowers, ocean and the mountains.
You see, my body was clearly very tired from the schedule of the last 2 weeks and being up for 24 hours when I traveled back home. But my mind and perhaps ego was saying something different. My mind said, “You need to get things done first before you can relax.” I realized this was an old belief that no longer served me. I remember when my children were teenagers and clearly capable of taking care of themselves. I wasn’t able to relax until everybody was taken care of. Not knowing any better, I put myself last.
If I want peace (which has been my daily INTENTION for many years), then I must pay attention to my body, mind and Spirit and give it the love it needs. I choose to live in the moment, follow my heart and trust that I am being led and that everything is in perfect and right order.
I have been reading Michael Singer’s book, “The Surrender Experiment” and Eckhart Tolle’s, “Stillness Speaks.” In both books the authors encourage their readers to learn to accept whatever comes into their lives and not resist.
My understanding of what they’re saying is that there is a Higher Power available to us and we can be helped by this Higher Power with any of our life’s situations if we just remain open to that possibility. The experience may not be pleasant and may even be painful. We are encouraged to just accept, no matter what it is. If we feel that we just can’t accept what’s happening at this time in our lives, then accept that we can’t accept. By accepting, we stay open and we allow the Higher Power to grant us the gift that each life experience is bringing us. By resisting what’s happening, we close ourselves to our Higher Power which prevents us from receiving help.
As I write this piece, I am being distracted by my neighbor’s gardener who is using his loud leaf blower and weed whacker on one side of my home and on the other side they are doing construction. I can imagine my Higher Power observing me with a smile as I try to concentrate and accept in this present life situation.
Accepting is a new way of life for me. The other day I decided to take a nap in the early afternoon. We don’t have air conditioning so we keep our windows and doors open. As I lay there, I became conscious of just how noisy it was outside. Dogs barking, people mowing lawns, hundreds of birds singing and chirping, etc. Usually, I would feel frustrated, impatient, angry and get all stirred up and would go into the “poor me, poor me” mode.
I have been working very hard to learn to be more accepting and just allow things to be the way they are. I decided to accept everything that was going on outside and stay open to possibilities. Before I knew it, I was able to visualize this commotion outside as a large philharmonic orchestra playing a beautiful symphony. I know this sounds crazy but it was really cool and before I knew it I was asleep.
I know this is just a small example in accepting, but if I can develop a new habit of staying open to life situations then hopefully, I can become more open to accepting larger situations as they arise.
We’re finding that it seems to be easier to “accept life situations” when we really try to live in the moment and not pay attention to what may happen in the future or what has happened in the past. Tolle suggests that what is happening in a life situation is not us; we are “who is observing the situation.” We are the one who is conscious of what is happening in that situation. It seems like when I can remember that I am an observer in the experience, I can stay open better and accept what is happening in the moment.
It’s such a positive experience to allow ourselves the opportunity to be flexible, to not be afraid of change, to be open to new ideas, and to accept the gift of joy and peace that is being offered to us. I send you the energy of love and light to help you on your journey, please accept my gift.
Three of my single girlfriends moved into their new homes the last couple of months. I probably am one of the first people to ask, “How can I help you and what do you need?” Of course, they are very grateful and appreciative. I always say to them, “It is my pleasure and I am just giving back what was given to me.” And I truly mean it. It will forever be in my heart what was given to me and the real meaning of community.
Over 35 years ago, my family and I were very active in a Christian community. To be closer in proximity to our brothers and sisters, we bought an old house that 2 women had lived in for fifty years and nothing had been done to it. It was a mess and needed EVERYTHING done before we could move in with 4 children under the age of 10.
It was truly through the eyes of “faith” that we had the courage to buy this house. I could see its potential and possibility and the price was within our means. What I didn’t know, at the time, was that we would only have 2 weeks to complete the needed renovations (a new bathroom, kitchen and every room needed to be painted) before we could move in.
It looked impossible that we would be able to move in on time and obvious to us that we couldn’t do this on our own. When you are desperate, and we were desperate, your pride goes out the window and we cried out to the people in community for help. Do you ever wonder why it is so difficult to ask for help? Although very humbling, what happened was truly a miracle in action.
This may sound crazy, but it is true. One man in the community took a week of vacation to put in a brand new kitchen and wouldn’t take any money for his time and expertise. Another member built a new bathroom on the first and second floor. Every room was newly painted before we moved in.
Because my ex-husband was working full time and I was caring for the children, we couldn’t be there 24/7 to oversee and supervise. Of course, we visited every day to see the progress and were in awe of the people who showed up daily to help us.
Outside each room (we had 4 bedrooms) there was a clipboard with all that needed to be completed in the room. The men and women came whenever they could and stayed for an hour or 5 hours. The next person that “showed up” would check the clipboard to see what was needed to do next.
I will never forget the day we moved in and the gratitude and joy we felt in our hearts. The house was completely done over and it looked beautiful. At the end of the day, the love was flowing and we all celebrated with a meal that the women in the community prepared.
I may not be able to say thank you to all the people that helped us 35 years ago so I am paying it forward. It is no wonder that it is my pleasure to help my friends when they move. I want to GIVE back after all I RECEIVED.
DAILY WORD I am abundantly blessed when I GIVE and RECEIVE
“The spiritual law of giving and receiving brings forth abundant blessings. In my sacred prayer time, Spirit reveals to me the ways that I can give and be of service. This law is very simple. If I desire to experience more love in my life, I give more love. If peace is what I seek, I offer peace. I am abundantly blessed when I participate in the flow of energy in the Universe.”
I am wondering if you heard this message while growing up as I did, “Children should be seen and not heard?” I know how important it is to be SEEN and HEARD to be a healthy human being.
I greeted a friend with, “It’s nice to see you” and she responded and said, “Thank you, it’s nice to be SEEN.” That night I greeted another friend the same way and she said the same thing, “It’s nice to be SEEN.” This got my attention and I started to think about what does it mean to be SEEN? Do I really SEE the ESSENCE and light within those I love or do I judge and see their faults or shor comings? I wish I could say I always see the light, but I don’t.
What does it mean to be SEEN? For me, it means to be PRESENT to another in their trials, joys, accomplishments and their sufferings. It means to be there for them when they need me; to just listen to them, give them a hug, lend a helping hand or make a meal. It means to be there with unconditional love and no judgment.
How do I feel when I am SEEN for who I am? How do I feel when someone tells me they see my light and energy, appreciate me and they like being in my presence? It feels really good. A friend of mine recently told me how centered and peaceful I was when she was with me. Since it feels so good to be SEEN, I want to tell others when I see their light.
A couple of weeks ago, while swimming at the pool, I noticed a younger woman sitting on a lounge chair chatting with a friend. I immediately noticed her light and her smile. I wanted to tell her what I saw, but felt uncomfortable going up to a stranger and interrupting their conversation.
About an hour later, I was walking out of the ladies room as she walked toward me. I stopped and said, “I noticed your bright light and smile while you were sitting at the pool and I just wanted you to know that”. Of course, she was delighted and said, “I am here with my parents and I am getting married next month.” She then asked me, “Were you here at this time last year because I remember your hat?” I hope it wasn’t just my hat that she remembered, but my light too!
When I go for walks along the ocean, I enjoy looking into people’s eyes and saying “Good morning or Aloha.” Some people just walk by with their heads down without making any eye contact. I quietly send them love. Other times, I don’t know the person, but when we look into each other’s eyes, there is an instant recognition and I can feel their light and energy.
The last chapter in Michael Singer’s book the “The Untethered Soul” is called, “The Loving Eyes of God.” It talks about how God sees us. “People say that God cries when he looks at this earth. The saint sees that God goes into ecstasy when He looks upon the earth, on all conditions, at all times. Ecstasy is the only thing God knows. God’s nature is eternal, conscious bliss. No matter what you have done, you are not going to be the one thing that ruins it. The beauty is that you can feel this ecstasy. Then nobody will upset or disappoint you. Nothing will create a problem. It will appear as part of the beautiful dance of creation unfolding before you. You will feel love instead of shame. Let go of the idea of a judgmental God. Your God is in ecstasy and there is nothing you can do about it. And if God is in ecstasy, I wonder what he sees when he looks at you?”
Is there an invitation to see and love ourselves as God loves and sees us?
There was a time in my life when going through difficult times, that I was angry and blamed God. I asked God, “Why is there so much hate, prejudice, violence and killing in our world? Why is there so much sickness and suffering?” If God is so powerful and loving, why are these things allowed to materialize? Looking at these events from my human perspective, I can become confused and frightened.
I don’t pretend to have the answers to these questions, but I do wonder if perhaps we, humankind must take responsibility for our part of the situation. Instead of blaming God, would it be better for us to open our hearts and become conscious of the gift of love that is continuously being offered to heal and transform us.
Over 40 years ago my spiritual journey led me to realize that I could no longer support the prejudice, hatred and violence that led to war after war. I was led to explore ways to promote peace and love in our world, not hatred and violence. My perspective of the scriptures was to live in kindness, patience, forgiveness and to love one another, not hate and kill each other.
Forty years ago, I didn’t always live up to those beliefs and, of course, I still have times when I’m challenged now. What is important for me is that I have continued to grow and become more conscious over the years and I’m much more successful and happier these days.
I just don’t see things changing until we really commit to looking into our own hearts and be willing to change and accept the healing power of love. I guess what I’m trying to say is that until we truly give love a chance we will never see the positive power that it is.
This perspective has not been an easy one to commit to. I’ve been very lonely and misunderstood by family and friends. I have been considered naive, unpatriotic and weird. I am familiar with the “deer in the headlight look” and condemnation when I shared my views. This perspective often met with a whole list of why it wouldn’t work. I heard comments like “That is just a lovely unrealistic, naive way to look at these real serious problems.” I hear people say love can never work in the real world.
Well, how’s the way we’re doing things now working?
I guess what I’m suggesting is that we all look deep into our hearts and consider being open to love’s power. Things can change one person at a time. I believe that is happening because if I can do it anyone can do it.
As I sat in the waiting room waiting as my car was being serviced, tears came to my eyes as I read a chapter in Michael Singer’s book, “The Surrender Experiment .“ The book is about the author’s experience of surrendering everything to the Universe and watching what comes to him as a result of always saying “yes” and resisting nothing.
This book touched a deep part in my heart as the tears flowed gently down my cheeks. I was remembering the many stories, miracles and synchronicities as I surrendered my life and wrote my book, “Simply a Woman of Faith.” My experiences and stories were on a much smaller scale than the author’s but they were still very powerful and valid to me.
My spiritual journey of surrendering, letting go and trusting God the last 4 decades has brought me here today, to this NOW moment. I am living on the ocean in a beautiful home with my soul mate, Larry. I am retired, happy, content and peaceful. My heart is full of gratitude and I take nothing for granted. Is my life/relationship perfect? Of course not, and it will never be. This is not to brag about anything I have done, but to express gratitude for God’s grace and for EVERYTHING that has unfolded in my life. I learned to say “yes” to all the gifts God offered me and I let go of not feeling deserving.
Comparing ourselves to others is common and can happen so subtly. As I started to compare myself with the author, I quickly recognized that my ego was starting to act up and say things like, “How come you are not experiencing as many synchronicities and miracles as you did years ago when you wrote your book? Your life is so peaceful and stress free now; maybe you are doing something wrong?” It almost felt like I was put out to pasture with nothing (dramatic) happening in my life.
I asked myself, “Why am I questioning if I am doing God’s will and surrendered now? Am I willing to trust the Universe that I am exactly where I am meant to be? Am I willing to accept that this is what God wants for me at this time in my life?” Yes, I am. It has taken me years to get to this place of surrender, peace and contentment and I am vigilant about not allowing anything, especially my ego to rob me. Eckhart Tolle states, “True freedom and the end of suffering is knowing I have completely chosen what I am feeling & experiencing NOW.”
I am becoming more and more aware of how ego shows up. Once I become aware of what ego is doing, it loses its power. Whenever I want to “resist” something that has come into my life, whenever I judge someone’s behavior and think I am right or better than them or would do things differently, it is my ego. I heard Spirit’s voice very clearly in my prayer this week. “Pat, MYOB (mind your own business.) I think this will be my new mantra!
I trust that whatever comes into my life, I will handle it with peace, ease and grace. God will give me the strength and courage to deal with it and it will be for my highest good. I may not like it and it may take some time, but I will accept it.
Like the author, Michael Singer, I choose to surrender everything to the Universe and watch what comes to me as a result of always saying “yes” and resisting nothing.
Those of us with children have experienced firsthand the absolute commitment that most parents make in accepting responsibility for raising and protecting their child at any cost.
When they’re babies and young children we take great pleasure in their first- time experiences with life’s little treasures. As babies, we experience sharing their first realization that they can hear, see, touch, smell and taste. As young children, we begin to let go a little and allow those experiences (like riding a bike, or fishing for the first time, or the first day of school or summer camp). When they become teenagers, they want to grow and spread their wings and make their own decisions.
We worry and stress out because all of a sudden they don’t see the world through our eyes. They form their own opinions and perspectives that don’t always agree with ours. We worry that they may make some poor decisions, get hurt or make mistakes that could have a disastrous effect on their lives. We question the way we brought them up and wonder if we did enough for them. We may ask ourselves, “Was I a good enough parent?” We worry that they will suffer heart break and pain or that they will take the wrong path and ruin their life.
Somewhere along that journey we realize that no matter what we do or say they will know pain and suffering of some kind. Hopefully, if they choose to share that part of their journey with us, we can be there for them and love them through whatever transpires.
I had an interesting thought yesterday. What if God said to you, “I gave you this child to nurture and love, but remember this child is also mine to nurture and love. We both definitely want our child to have the best life experience they can possibility have.” Then God showed us a printout of the opportunities and challenges our child was going to be offered during this journey. Some of the challenges could cause great heart break and pain and some of the opportunities would bestow wonderful spiritual and worldly gifts greater than our child could have ever imagined.
God and parents would be there during this child’s journey to help in any way they could. Our child would learn to accept what was happening at any given moment and be open to the constant gift of love that is being offered. Our child would feel supported, worthy and fulfilled. Our child would not be fearful or allow ego to run her/his life. Our child would lead a peaceful, stress free life and when the journey was over would shed its form and be one again in total love consciousness.
Then God would say, “All you have to do is continue to love our child no matter what happens, you’ve seen the printout. You understand that our child has to experience certain difficulties so he/she can grow and become more conscious and open enough to accept my unboundless gift of love.”
Then I thought, “Thank you God for this thought and insight. Looking back it’s helpful to know that while raising our children we were not doing it alone, you were there every step of the way (even though at times it did not feel that way) to protect and guide us with your wisdom and love.
Wouldn’t it be great if we really were shown the printout of our child’s life before he/she was born? We would understand that all of our worrying and stress were meaningless. This is where trust comes in for worrying is an illusion.
One of the reasons I think my relationship with Larry works so well and why I love it so much is because we have learned to be FLEXIBLE with life and with one another. In other words, we are learning to go with the flow and accept “what is.” It seems like a theme in our lives these days to surrender and accept “what it” because we need to practice it daily if we want to experience peace.
I don’t think being flexible in a relationship is easy or even doable if you haven’t learned to be flexible with yourself and to trust what you need to do for yourself in each moment. For example, I really looked forward to attending a potluck luncheon with my yoga group on Memorial Day. Larry and I both had busy weeks and I helped a friend move. I spent Sunday “filling up myself” and resting which was good for my soul.
I felt surprised when I started to feel “uncomfortable” about attending the yoga luncheon because I was really looking forward to it. I didn’t understand why I didn’t want to go and, of course, I didn’t want to disappoint my friends. I have learned to go within and trust Spirit that I am being guided and will do what is right and for my highest good.
There was a time in my life that I wouldn’t give myself permission to change my mind-just because I wanted too. If I was sick, there wouldn’t be a problem saying no. But to change my mind and not follow through is something I didn’t do because I would be more concerned about what others thought of me than with doing what was good for me and for my highest good. It would take me a long time to make a decision and then I would have to talk myself out of feeling guilty.
I am grateful for my growth and how I have learned to respect my wants and needs and take care of myself in body, mind and spirit. I have learned to change my mind and say no without guilt.
Instead of attending the yoga luncheon, Larry and I decided to spend the day together driving up-country and going out to lunch. This felt more peaceful since we hadn’t spent much quiet time together during the week. When I woke up in the morning, the desire to spend the day on the road just didn’t feel peaceful. I wanted to stay home and just BE.
When I shared it with Larry, he was flexible and fine with it, which I knew he would be. He loves to stay home and relax. He respected my need for quiet and was willing to change his plans. Within a few minutes, he received a phone call from the people renting the condo he manages and his morning changed completely. I may not have liked it, but I would have been flexible with the change of plans and accepted “what is.”
I would not want to be in a relationship with someone if I wasn’t respected and there wasn’t flexibility, especially at this time in my life. Of course, there are times when I choose to do something for the person I love that I don’t particularly want to do. The difference is that it is a matter of choice and I am doing it out of love rather than guilt and trying to please someone.
My deepest desire is to become the most complete vessel of love that I can be. I have shared with you before that I believe “love consciousness” is GOD and I know love consciousness gives me many opportunities each day to grow and become a more complete vessel of love.
I don’t always notice these opportunities or take advantage of them because I’m either not listening or my mind is so crowded with my own “me,me, me” thoughts and petty issues that I don’t recognize the opportunities when they appear.
I pray this prayer every morning. “I promise to allow love to touch through me, in its very special way, each person that comes into my life.” I believe that we are all connected through love consciousness (love’s energy and light) and if we remain open to that gift, we can share it with one another. As we learn to do this we grow and become more conscious of who we are intended to be as “vessels of love.”
I try to connect with others and be present to them even if it’s just for a few seconds. I recognize them as another human being and not just a means to an end. It may be in the grocery store, the bank, drug store, or a waitress or waiter serving us. Opportunities come from everywhere to practice being vessels of love.
During my morning walk today I was inspired to stop the garbage truck and express to the driver what a good job he was doing and how much we appreciated his efforts each week. He seemed very happy to hear that and responded in a kind way. He shook my hand and thanked me and wished me a good day.
I have been practicing silently sending love in situations where I have to wait. It may be while I am waiting in line at the store or sitting in a doctor’s office or sitting at a red light. Instead of getting stressed out or irritable, I just send love to all of the souls present and to the Universe. This is my intention, but that doesn’t mean I can do this all of the time. I’m trying to recognize the opportunities that are presented to me to be a vessel of love. I’m certainly not perfect, but I don’t think it’s about perfection. I think for me it’s about learning to live a different way. I know this sounds simple and it is, but it’s not easy.
I am learning to recognize when EGO is trying to disrupt my peace when I judge situations and others, when I am inflexible, impatient, short tempered or allow fear to rule my life. I am learning how powerful words are and realizing I have to choose them carefully when I speak, and to be more sensitive and compassionate. Mark Twain offers “The difference between the right word and wrong word is the difference between lightning and a lightning bug.”
LOVE ENERGY (patience, compassion, forgiveness, kindness) offers us the opportunity to choose every day whether we live in the light of love or the darkness of unconsciousness.
I don’t necessarily like the direction I see our world heading and I feel pretty helpless sometimes. What I do believe is that there is an energy more powerful than anything humankind has ever fully experienced and that is the power of LOVE. If I can in some way be a vessel of love and touch the hearts of those people brought into my life, who knows what can happen. LOVE surprises me all time.
“LOVE IS THE ONLY FORCE CAPABLE OF TRANSFORMING AN ENEMY INTO A FRIEND Martin Luther King JR.
I experienced something this week that brought me back to my family of origin, if you will. Growing up in an alcoholic/dysfunctional home, I learned certain behaviors that I wasn’t aware I was still exhibiting in my adult life, until now.
For example: If my father confronted my mother about something she did, she would deny it and then turn it around about something she didn’t like in him. They would end up arguing about what he said to her and the problem that was brought up in the beginning was never resolved.
When I confronted my ex-husband (who was not an alcoholic) when he forgot to bring the milk home after he said he would, he would say, “Mrs. Saint, you never forget anything, do you?” I would then defend myself and we didn’t address him not bringing home the milk.
I still get defensive sometimes, especially when I “PERCEIVE” that someone I love is making a judgment about me or they don’t approve of something I‘m doing or not doing. Talk about giving your power away because I know what others think of me is none of my business.
Here is what happened with Larry and I. I love to listen to soft music playing in the background when I am in the house. I feel comforted, relaxed and peaceful.
For the most part, Larry likes quiet. Since we are both living in the same house, I respect his need for quiet and keep the music quite low. I don’t like the sound of the TV playing, but that doesn’t bother him. He loves to eat his lunch in the TV room to unwind and relax. That has not been a problem for us because I like to sit outside on the lanai looking at the ocean.
When he asked me this question, “Do you think you are getting enough”quiet” with the music playing all the time?” I didn’t blink an eye and came at him with a vengeance. I not only REACTED but ATTACKED him and said, “What do you mean by that? What do you think I do when I sit outside every morning? I have plenty of quiet time. I like the music playing in the background because it relaxes me and makes me feel peaceful.”
Instead of not reacting or taking it personally and just listening to his perspective, (which was not right or wrong), when he asked me the question, I turned it around just like the alcoholic turned things around when confronted about a behavior. I said, “I don’t like the TV playing and see you in there for hours at a time. I don’t judge you or complain about that.”
Later that evening, I realized how defensive I was and apologized for my behavior. He accepted it and were both able to let it go. As I thought about it and prayed about it the next morning, I realized that my reaction was so strong not only because I felt judged by him, but because it didn’t appear that he trusted me to know what was good for me That was the bigger issue for me.
I know it shouldn’t make a difference because it was only his perspective and that doesn’t make it right or wrong. Even if I am being judged by another, that doesn’t mean that I have to defend myself or make myself wrong. I can’t tell you how many years I did that to myself
I brought it up to him again because it didn’t feel settled and because communication is so important to the both of us. I said, “Do you think you were being judgmental about me playing the music?” He said, “No, I don’t think it was judgmental, but just an observation.” It is understandable that we both have different needs and perspectives and we are learning to communicate and respect each other in that way.
As we discussed it further, he realized that he sometimes likes the music playing, but not all the time in the house. He wanted me to turn the music off when I was outside or left the house, which I agreed to do. That was very different from, “Do you think you are getting enough “quiet” with the music playing?” Rather than saying what he wanted – to have the music off when I am not in the room, he projected it onto me that I wasn’t getting enough “quiet” time.
I feel like this was an “awakening” for me because I had no idea this behavior that I learned in childhood was still playing out. I want to be open, to listen and not defend myself and take things personally. With God’s grace and my willingness to change, it will happen
Lately I’ve been having trouble discerning what to write about. Usually I have an idea that’s been floating around for a while and the words just start coming. It hasn’t been that way the last couple of weeks. When we decided that I would contribute to Pat’s blog there was an understanding that I would try but I didn’t want to start stressing out if I had nothing to contribute.
Last week I contributed and the week before that I did not. This week my thoughts have been pretty scattered and I felt I had nothing to contribute, so I informed Pat that I wouldn’t be writing. She was fine with that and told me not to worry about it but suggested that I could perhaps share what I was experiencing.
When I decided that I wasn’t going to write the blog, a funny thing happened. My ego started having a ball with this. It started with, “Hey, you have a responsibility to contribute and you are not living up to your responsibility. Pat can’t depend on you. What about the people that look forward to reading your stuff every week? You are letting them down. Is this process too difficult for you? Is there too much soul searching for you? Is it too difficult? Do you just not want to do the work?”
I don’t want this to sound like it’s a “poor me, poor me” because it isn’t but it is very hard work to strip away all the defenses and perhaps knock down some walls and let others see how vulnerable I am. In all honesty, this worlk has to be done week in and week out if someone wants to contribute to a blog like this. In the end it’s worth it because whether anyone reads it or not, I learn a lot about myself, that I didn’t know before.
Pat shared with you her reaction to my comment about having music playing all the time and my inquiry if she had enough quiet in her life. Well, I said it, so I have to do the work to understand why that makes any difference to me. After doing some work on it I realized that what I really wanted to communicate is that from my perspective it is easier to hear the silent voice of God when we have silence. The lesson I learned is “Larry that’s your perspective, keep it to yourself.”
I know you all have had similar experiences in a friendship or relationship, it’s not always easy. If we can learn more each day how important love, compassion, patience and forgiveness is we will have a happier life together.
I have known this for a long time and am slowly learning to accept and even welcome that which I see in others is in me and a projection of myself. Whether it is the positive/light or the negative/darkness, it is always about ME. Often, what I have disowned in myself (shadow) or I refuse to see in myself, I can easily see it in my brother or sister. It is because we are mirrors for one another. We are invited to love all parts of ourselves and if we are unaware of something that is hidden from our consciousness, we cannot love it. I have 2 examples of seeing myself in another to share with you this week.
Of course, it is easier to accept that when I see the light and positive in another that it is also in me. I often see kindness and gentleness in Larry and I always affirm him for those qualities, although he doesn’t always see that kindness in himself. I recently realized that no matter how much I affirm him, he has to believe it for himself and it is impossible for me to do it for him. That is an inside job.
So I decided that rather than “over-praise” Larry when I see kindness in him because I want him to believe it about himself, I would turn it back on me and affirm and appreciate myself for my kindness and gentleness. If I see it in him, it is in me.
Larry and I are participants in a weekly book study group. There is a woman in the group who I admire and like her energy. She shares from her heart and is honest and open. She shares her struggles as well as her spiritual progress. What I particularly admire is her relationship and love for God. Since I easily see the light and love in her, I choose to embrace it and see it in myself.
It is not so easy and I am not always willing, at first, to see in myself what I don’t like in another. In fact, sometimes it takes a while to see the truth and set myself free. When I spot something in another person that I don’t like, it is easy to point the finger and blame, judge and even call them names.
It is a normal reaction, if you will, to “close our hearts” and withdraw from another person if we feel hurt, judged or misunderstood. I became aware that I also close my heart when I don’t trust someone for a “perceived” wrongdoing to protect myself from further hurt. I am wondering how often over the years I have closed my heart and lost relationships.
When I close my heart, I block the energy (God) from within. Not only is my heart closed, but my mind is also closed and it closes me off from all energy.
I had a situation with a friend that took me quite a while to recognize what was really going on. I wasn’t ready to see my part until I was willing to ask for help. I prayed and asked Spirit to show me the truth and set me free because it was really troubling me and I had lost my peace. I just couldn’t figure out why I didn’t trust this person and felt so uncomfortable when I was in her presence.
I heard Spirit say, “You need to relax and not stress about trying to “figure it out.” I often like to figure things out in my head because it feels like I have some control. What an illusion that is. Spirit said, “All you need to do is open your heart.”
The truth set me free as I listened and opened my heart and mind. What was gently revealed to me by Spirit in meditation and a dream was that I didn’t trust myself in some areas and was projecting it on to her. I got the message and the stress and “uncomfortableness” was completely gone when I was in her presence again. I have made a commitment to myself and God to keep my heart open and not close it when I feel threatened or afraid.
I have been thinking about how incredible creation is. It seems that the longer I live, the more I become aware of how all creation is connected. We are connected to one another and to nature.
Although our perspectives can be different and we may be seeking our consciousness in different ways we are still the same. We are looking for the same things and we have the same doubts and struggles, as well as the same hopes and dreams.
Sometimes we see another person and think, “Boy that person has got it all together and I wish I could be like that.” All I’ve got is this crazy “roommate” in my head that never stops talking, telling me what to do and what not to do. Most times it is judging me and encouraging me to judge others so I can feel better about myself. I bet if I talked with the person I thought had it all together they would laugh and tell me that they have the same type of challenges that I have.
I am grateful for the opportunity that Pat and I are participating in a book study group on Michael Singer’s book, “The Untethered Soul”. We read a few chapters each week and then get together once a week to share our perspective on what we’ve read. There are 13 people in our group. We’ve traveled many different paths and are currently living on Maui. We have wonderful, diversified, intelligent people who share openly from their hearts.
We are all unique in the way we are seeking to grow and become more conscious in our spiritual lives, but I am amazed at how alike we are in our life experiences. We all struggle with the same insecurities, doubts, fears and not good enough thoughts and behaviors. We help each other to expose our egos and not allow our egos to have power in our lives. We are all trying to accept our life situations and not resist. We are attempting to keep our hearts open to Spirit’s power and not close our hearts to what life brings us.
I see this experience as a wonderful opportunity for me to grow and become more conscious, so that I can become a more complete vessel of love. Through this experience, I am learning to become more patient, offer kindness, have more compassion for others, accept what is and not resist, let go of control and recognize and expose my ego. I sincerely hope that I am offering the attributes of patience, kindness, compassion and understanding to my fellow group members.
I had an opportunity this week to accept and not resist: I volunteer at a local organization delivering meals to the homebound on Monday afternoons. I agreed to fill in for someone last Friday. Well, I got into my very relaxed mode on Friday afternoon and forgot about filling in. Pat came into the room about 3:55 p.m. and asked me if I was going to deliver today. I jumped up and said, “OMG, I forgot.” Fear, resistance, stress, anxiety, judgement were all fighting to get into my psyche at once. I flew out of the house and started hell bent down the mountain. Then I asked myself, “What are you doing?” I needed to calm down and not resist what was happening, but just accept it. I said to myself, “So you’ll be a half hour late, its ok.” I was able to accept and allow what was happening to happen, I just let go of all the negatives that were clamoring for attention. I allowed my peace to return and everything went along very smoothly.
We discussed in group how we handle challenges in our lives when our energy becomes blocked or negative). One of the ways we all seemed to respond to energy blocked was to get out in nature by walking, running, swimming, going to the ocean or mountains or just sitting outside. We all sought the energy in nature to somehow nurture our wounds, calm our anger and help us reconnect with our healing power within. We remember that we are worthy, we always have been worthy and we always will be worthy because we were created out of love and we are love.
Mother Theresa wrote, “I am a pencil in God’s hand.” Today, I say YES to be a pencil in God’s hand. It is an honor and privilege to be of service to God and to the world. It is my passion to inspire and share authentically from my heart my journey of Awakening to the truth of who I am and where I have come from. It is my intention for you to find and connect to the “God within” (Source) and to live your life from this place of love.
I share “my stuff” and my process (which is not always easy) each week to let you know you are not alone as we all experience the same challenges and opportunities because we are all ONE. I believe that openness breeds openness and we need each other on the spiritual path to be open and honest with one another. Every step of your journey holds a lesson for you and I am grateful and humbled to share my lessons with you.
I started writing the blog once a month in 2007 when “Simply a Woman of Faith” was published. That was a stretch coming up with something to write once a month. In 2010, I started writing every week and have been ever since. Now Larry and I write and share our journey together. What a gift and blessing.
Some of you have been reading the blogs since the beginning and I thank you for your support and love. I especially want to thank all of you who have written and shared your experience with us. If it wasn’t for YOU, we wouldn’t be doing this. It would be a delight and gift to us to hear from you and your experience in reading the blogs, whether you began in 2007 or last week. We are open to receiving your feedback and love.
If anybody would have told me that I would write an inspirational blog every week, I would have told them that they were crazy. After all, I dropped out of a Bachelors program for a whole year because I was terrified that I couldn’t write a 20 page paper. Miracles do happen when we are open and ask for help.
Writing the blog is like giving BIRTH EVERY WEEK. Sometimes, it flows with peace, ease and grace and sometimes the process is painful and uncomfortable. I am learning PATIENCE and to WAIT and TRUST in God’s timing. God is trustworthy and has never let me down. Although, sometimes I wondered because it seemed like I had nothing to write about until I sat down at the computer to write. And then it came as I let go of control and “my plan.”
One of the many gifts that I have received in writing weekly is that I have to PAY ATTENTION to what is going on inside of me and PROCESS it so I can write a message that is meaningful and inspiring. It has also been a gift to have Larry join me and share his personal experiences of spirituality. We are forced (willingly) to discuss our relationship and how to grow as a couple so we can be vessels of love.
I am learning to let go of control and what I think Larry should write or not write. Last week, when he didn’t write, I accepted it and supported his decision. It’s been a great learning experience not to push him and do it like I think it should be done. Author Kute Blackson writes, “The root of misery is control. Control is the master addiction, the hardest one to give up. Control is an illusion, as there is so much in live that we cannot control. When you try to control what you cannot, then suffering is your guaranteed result.”
Another gift of writing the blog is when I meet someone in the community and they say, “I love your blogs and my husband is reading it too or that is exactly what I needed to hear today.”
I am learning to not be attached to the outcome and results. Of course, like anyone else, I love to receive feedback about what I write. When I don’t get any feedback, I have to let go of making up a story that people didn’t get anything from reading it. I have to keep my eyes on God and trust that if I am not meant to write anymore, Spirit will reveal that to me. Perhaps it wouldn’t be good for my ego to get too much feedback. All I know is that I have to accept “what is” and not resist.
So in love and joy, we will continue to write and share our journey with you in hopes it will help you deepen your relationship with Source and inspire you to have the courage to follow your heart and dreams.
For the last couple of weeks I’ve been feeling spiritually disconnected or scattered. I think perhaps I’m being given an opportunity to learn to accept “what is” and not be stressed over what isn’t.
I’ve been contributing to Pat’s blog since last September (31 blogs). It seems that every week Spirit will give me something to write about. I just wait and trust that something will manifest itself and I will be inspired to share it with you. Last week, for the first time, nothing arrived as I waited and the days came and went. I had a few thoughts and even started to write but after a few paragraphs I realized that I was just spinning my wheels and deleted it.
I manage an ocean front condo in Kihei to supplement my income. I usually have no trouble keeping it rented until now. I haven’t received any inquiries or bookings in almost a month which has never happened before. Our summer months are not filling up and it is a concern because I work on commission.
In the past, my reactions to these two situations would have been very different than they are today. In regards to the blog, I would have been stressed and forced myself to write something at any cost because I made a commitment to contribute each week. I wouldn’t want to disappoint Pat or our readers. I would have felt frustrated that I didn’t live up to my part of the bargain and that I let everyone down.
As for the condo, I would have felt stressed out about not performing and not doing enough to get it booked for the summer. I would have felt frustrated that I wasn’t doing a good enough job and not being successful and giving my client my best effort.
Instead, what I actually did was recognize that these situations were giving me an opportunity to practice accepting and not resisting things as they are. In both instances, I didn’t feel like I had failed, but had accepted the way things were and I looked forward to writing in the blog whenever I had something to contribute. If the condo books that’s great and if it doesn’t, well that’s just the way it goes. It’s not the end of the world.
I’m learning that what I resist persists. When I constrict, I close my heart. I’m trying to protect myself from the unpleasant circumstances of the situation. When I do that, I prevent the possibility of receiving the help the Universe is trying to give me. When I remain open and accept things as they are, I relax and open my heart and allow the energy and light of love to help me in the situation.
Learning not to resist is a difficult lesson for me to learn because I think I’ve been resisting often during my journey. It’s important for me to remember how wonderful things turn out when I am able to accept and when given the chance love performs miracles in my life.
I am so grateful for my daily “awakenings” because I get to witness what I had backwards for much of my life. I thought if I loved someone deeply and completely, they would love me back and I would be able to RECEIVE their love.
My focus for many years was on the “outside” and taking care of YOU (whoever you were at the time) because I needed you desperately to love me back. I was empty inside and experienced self-hatred, inadequacy and “not enoughness” in everything. This led to my people pleasing behaviors and approval addiction. Like many of us, I wasn’t taught how to love and appreciate myself because it was considered selfish and conceited. Instead of selfishness, think of “SELF is ness” which means noticing, accepting, loving, cherishing and appreciating yourself. It is the grace Of God to the accept ourselves and that allows us to accept others.
It is my belief that the more I love and appreciate myself, the more I can RECEIVE love from another. We are not CAPABLE of receiving love from another if we haven’t learned to love ourselves. Sure, I have experienced love from another when I didn’t love myself, but it was never enough. It wasn’t until I gave myself self-love that I was capable of RECEIVING the deep love I craved from another. It all begins and ends with me as I awaken and come home to myself in my body, mind and spirit. As women, we know how to give. We know how to over-give. But we have no idea how to RECEIVE. We have a serious crimp in our receiving hose.
When my focus and attention is on YOU whether that be caretaking, fixing, controlling or judging you, I don’t see ME and my behaviors until you mirror them back to me. We know that what we spot in others, positive or negative is a part of us that we have disowned. It can also be called our shadow or blind spots.
It is humbling when God shines His light into my heart and shows me behaviors that I didn’t know were there. It is not always pleasant, but I am grateful because if I don’t see it, I can’t change it. Years ago, a good friend told me that I was defensive. I was shocked and guess what I did? I defended myself! I have worked very hard at not being defensive over the years so I was surprised what came up for me recently.
I shared with a friend something I noticed that she was saying about herself that I thought was negative. She became defensive. As I walked away, I realized that is how I used to be a lot when someone tried to point something out to me. What a mirror she was. I learned a big lesson about the importance of just listening and not saying anything to defend myself.
After I shared the incident with Larry and what I learned, I asked him, “Do you think I am defensive?” Silly me! He said, “YES, A LOT.” I was shocked and then he laughed and said, “I’m only kidding.” I said, “OUCH – please be serious because I really want to know the truth.” He thought about it and said, “Not much.” I asked, “Where am I defensive?” He said, “Your driving.” I really wanted to defend myself and say, “Sure you wouldn’t like it if I told you what lane to drive in” but kept my mouth shut.
He was RIGHT because I have been defensive about my driving. The truth is that I don’t like to be told what to do. If I was totally confident in my driving, I could let his remarks just float by me, detach and not pay any attention to them. Instead, my mouth goes on and on. NO MORE. He can say whatever he wants to. I have kindly said to him, “Honey, if you don’t like how I drive, I would be happy to have you drive.”
Since this incident, I am noticing my “defensive behaviors” in the kitchen when Larry suggests that I do something that I already know how to do. I think to myself he must think I am stupid. I sometimes react with a smart remark instead of just saying O.K. I think he is just trying to be helpful and I don’t need to take it personally and think he is judging me.
As I am awakening and my “stuff” comes to the light to be healed and transformed, it is crucial that I continue to love myself and not beat up on myself as I did for so many years. It’s another opportunity to embrace all of me the positive and the negative because it’s all GOOD.
I was remembering the other day that when people ask me, “How do you feel today?” My reply is usually an automatic “Magnificent.” When someone says to me, “Enjoy your day” my reply is, “Thank you, I am” and I really mean what I say.
I don’t live in a dream world and have challenges just like we all do. I have gray times, times of fear and uncertainty. I’m traveling this journey just like anyone else but I have this core belief and at that level I feel magnificent. My question to myself is, “How did I reach this place and why do I feel this way?”
As I think about it, there are many reasons that I can share.
I start enjoying each day immediately as I awaken.
I see each day as a gift.
I live with an attitude of gratitude.
I have made it a habit of deleting negative thoughts and negative energy in my life.
I take the time to enjoy the many gifts that are offered to me each day; the morning sunrise, the sweetness of the morning air, the beautiful aroma of a pulmeria bloom, the birds singing, the sun shining, beautiful flowers all around us, the ocean, the mountains, the sky, etc.
I have become more accepting and flexible about people and situations in my life.
I am learning not to judge and have learned how to forgive. I understand how unforgiveness is like a lead weight that we carry around, we will never be truly happy or at peace until we learn to forgive.
I consciously make decisions to eliminate stress in my life.
I take full responsibility for my actions and with the help of grace make conscious decisions.
I try to consciously face my fears and eliminate them with help from the energy and light of love.
I associate with loving people who are actively seeking their truth, as they discover their ways to become vessels of love.
I give myself permission to just BE. No planned time, open time, time to relax, inhale and let it out slowly, rest, listen to the silence voice of God. Take a walk in nature, by the ocean or mountains.
I live with a partner who is loving, caring, supportive, kind, beautiful inside and out, generous and funny. I’m so fortunate to share my journey with her.
Thank you for allowing me to share with you why I feel so MAGNIFICENT. Participating in this sharing has helped me to understand how I arrived at this place. Perhaps reading this may be beneficial to someone else who is seeking to find their MAGNIFICENCE.
I love to celebrate milestones; birthdays, anniversaries and holidays. I looked forward to celebrating our 2 year anniversary of being together. Larry and I talked about going out to lunch and doing something special, but nothing had been planned yet.
We were having our morning time together when the subject of how we were going to celebrate our anniversary came up. Larry turned to me and said, “You’re not expecting a gift, are you?” I was taken off guard because I hadn’t thought about it and automatically said, “Oh no.” My #1 language of love is gifts and cards.
We finished our time together and got ready for the day. Something didn’t feel right inside. I thought about an incident that happened with Larry a few weeks ago. I asked him if he would like me to pay for the dance we were going to that night. He said, “No, but it would feel better if you wanted to pay for something to just say, “I would like to treat you tonight.” I understood what he meant and agreed to do that.
At first, I wasn’t going to say anything to Larry about his remark about not expecting a gift, but it felt like an “ouch” and similar to when I asked him if he wanted me to pay for the dance. I decided to bring it up to him and share my feelings. I could feel myself tearing up as we began to talk and I felt childish.
As we talked, I became aware that my emotional upset and tears were not about today but was about my past and being forgotten on anniversaries and birthdays in my marriage. I was surprised because that happened almost 50 years ago and I have done the inner work of forgiveness and letting go. I do know that everything that has ever happened to us is still in our bodies and the original wound can be triggered by a present event.
Larry explained to me what he meant by his remark that it wasn’t that he didn’t want to buy me a gift, it was just that he didn’t know if it was expected because celebrating anniversaries was not something that was important to him and his #1 love language.
It is my belief that we are in relationships to heal one another. Even though I felt very vulnerable, I found myself in his loving embrace and allowed myself to cry and be healed by his love. What was significant for me is that he HEARD me and was willing to love me how I wanted and needed to be loved. Even though it wasn’t important to celebrate the way I did, he was willing to do it for me. That alone was a huge healing.
As I sat to reflect on what happened later in the day, I felt some shame and guilt coming up that my love language was gifts. I love to receive and give gifts. I quickly realized that judging this part of me was not what I wanted to do. I needed to love and appreciate myself and my love language, which I did.
As we finished our discussion Larry said, “I am the bad guy.” I said, OMG (with tears running down my cheeks), you didn’t hear me. YOU ARE THE GOOD GUY. It is your love that is healing deep wounds from my past. I assured him how loved and cared for I felt.
We went about our day and later during the day he said, “I know what I can get you for our anniversary. If you would like, I will buy you new dance shoes.” I smiled and said, “I would love that.” It will be the perfect gift since we both love to dance. I ordered the shoes and will be dancing my little feet off in a few days
I think the experience that Pat shares in this week’s blog shows how different our perspectives can be and why it’s so important to be able to discuss in a rational manner situations that arise when being in relationship.
Celebrating holidays, birthdays, anniversaries and special days are not high on my list of priorities and I have a tendency to just let them go by and sometimes not even notice them. I am so thankful for the life I have and where I live that I welcome every day as a “special” gift.
I know that Pat’s number one love language is cards and gifts. She loves to celebrate holidays, birthdays, and anniversaries. We are in a committed relationship but we have not had a commitment ceremony. It’s important to Pat that there be a day each year that we celebrate as our anniversary, so she picked a date that meant something to her. That’s fine with me but I kind of let her remind me which day it is because it does not resonate as a big thing for me. She’s wonderful about that and has been gently reminding me that the date was coming up and asking how we should celebrate it.
The other day I asked her if she was expecting a gift. What I meant by asking her that was, “Is this a gift giving occasion or will a card and lunch be OK?” Her perspective of what I said is different than my perspective. I suppose we could have wasted time and energy contesting that issue. Instead, we chose to listen and support each other’s perspective in an honest, supportive and loving way. I didn’t criticize or belittle her. I understood her feelings because I know her history. I also felt like I may have let her down by not remembering how important her number one love language is to her. Pat didn’t make me feel like the bad guy. Instead, she communicated that my support and caring love helped her to heal.
Relationships are not easy, we have to give them plenty of attention. There are always opportunities to heal and grow. They’re like planting a garden, one has to constantly water and weed if you want it to be successful.
It seems like we need to love ourselves enough that we don’t just settle for something or if something is bothering us to sweep it under the rug. It is difficult to bring up an unpleasant subject and we have to put our ego aside and discuss the opportunity in a loving and caring way. It’s important to understand that our partner may have a different understanding or perspective of the situation and it isn’t a question of who’s right and who’s wrong, it is just that we are different.
I will try to be as patient as “a soft summer rain” and allow the light of love to show me the way. We will continue our journey together in gratitude, for the gift we are to each other.
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- It was so easy to backslide
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