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I am now speaking up

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“Anyone who is not on the same evolutionary and spiritual frequency will distance himself/herself from you, while all those who are on the same evolutionary and spiritual frequency as you will come closer to you; you will see how amazing it is to discover that everyone who needs to be by your side will ultimately appear in your life in the most spontaneous and divine manner.”

A couple of years ago my best friend told me she didn’t want to see me anymore because I had changed too much and she didn’t like something I had said to her. I felt devastated, hurt, sad, angry, and disappointed. It took time to process my feelings and let them go. I chose not to hold onto resentment and forgave her, even though I didn’t understand how this happened (until NOW) after 35 years of friendship. Like the quote says, anyone who is not on the same evolutionary and spiritual frequency will distance himself from you. No right or wrong, good or bad, accept what is.

As I sat around the table with my “Maui tribe” of women for a delicious Turkish breakfast, we all agreed that Spirit had brought us together and most likely, we had past lives together (everyone who needs to be by your side will ultimately appear in your life in the most spontaneous and divine manner.)

I was inspired to pose this question to my friends, “What was the greatest gift you received during COVID this past year? The love, gratitude, and sharing flowed as we opened our hearts more deeply to one another. We shared the joys as well as the pain of isolation and being alone during COVID.

I shared that my greatest gift from COVID was doing FaceTime with my daughter and grandson every day while they ate their dinner. They are on the east coast and we are 6 hours difference. Before COVID, we usually talked once or twice a week.

What a joy it was for us to just “shoot the breeze” about what was going on in our daily lives. My daughter took me on a farm tour of her amazing herb gardens that were magnificent this time of year. I watched my grandson compete at the gym. During this time, we supported, listened to, and loved one another. My daughter is truly is her mother’s daughter and I’m so proud of the woman and mother she has become.

AS YOU ARE SHIFTING, you will begin to realize that you are not the same person you used to be. The things you used to tolerate have become intolerable. When you once remained quiet, you are now speaking your truth. When you once battled and argued, you are now choosing to remain silent. You are beginning to understand the value of your voice and there are some situations that no longer deserve your time, energy, and focus.” Unknown

I don’t know about you, but I know I am not the same person I used to be. I feel changed from the inside out; alive and free to be myself. I always did the BEST I could at the time so I don’t beat up on myself. I’m just grateful for the changes and for the woman I am becoming.

Recently, a friend said something to me that was hurtful. Instead of being defensive and saying something sarcastic back or pushing it down and pretending nothing was wrong, I simply and lovingly said, “what you said didn’t feel good.” My friend immediately took responsibility for what she said and it was done. Where I once remained quiet, I am now speaking my truth.

I’m grateful that I recognized “at the moment” that what my friend said didn’t feel good. For so many years, I was numb and not in touch with my feelings. It may have taken a few hours or weeks to realize I felt hurt.

Where I once battled and argued because I wanted to be right and in control, I’m now choosing to remain silent. Choosing to be silent is a big one for me. I’m learning to mind my own business, unless I’m asked for advice, I try not to give it.

I am responsible for my own happiness. Everyone has their own journey and process and it’s not up to me to fix or show them the way. It is very liberating to realize that there are some situations that no longer deserve my time, energy, and focus.

 “Use your voice for kindness, your ears for compassion, your hands for charity, your mind for truth, and your heart for love.”

Acceptance is the answer

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For the most part, I don’t consider myself to be a complainer. I work hard at “accepting what is” and trusting whatever is happening is for my highest good and a lesson I need to learn. Some people see the glass half-full and others see it half-empty. I have always been a half-full girl. How about you?

When Larry and I get up in the morning, we usually ask one another, “How did you sleep?” We both have challenges sleeping and waking up several times a night. It is very frustrating for me to get up 3 or 4 times a night to pee. I usually get back to sleep unless I have something on my mind that I’m concerned about.

In those instances that I can’t get back to sleep, I pray and send love to those in need, and it always helps me get back to sleep. I’m sure it helps the people I am praying for too. I believe in the power of prayer. It is a privilege to pray for others as I know it is the best thing, I can do for those I love.

Instead of complaining when I wake up in the middle of the night (which I have done a lot of) and can’t get back to sleep, I’m practicing GRATITUDE. For example: “Thank you that my body eliminates so well. Thank you that I have legs to walk and eyes to see. Thank you that I have a warm bed to get back into. Thank you that I can take a nap if I’m tired the next day. Thank you that I can breathe and my heart is beating.”

Being grateful, especially when I don’t feel like it is like a magic eraser. It erases the stress, fear and worry and I eventually relax and feel peaceful. It is a “practice” and a shift in focus or perspective, as well as a retraining of the mind.

It’s moving from what’s missing (lack-scarcity) to what I actually have (abundance.) Writing down what I’m grateful for makes it real rather than it floating around in my head. There were times when I felt really fearful about something and I wrote 3 pages of gratitude and it shifted the energy.

Gratitude reduces my fears because it’s hard to be fearful and grateful at the same time, especially when I can’t control other people or things happening in the world. When I’m grateful for everything I have, including my problems, fear has little place to live in my mind. Being grateful puts me into a state of abundance.

Complaining is one of the ego’s favorite strategies for strengthening itself. Eckhart Tolle writes, “Every complaint is a little story the mind makes up that you believe, whether you complain aloud or only in your head. When you are in the grip of ego, complaining especially about other people is habitual and unconscious. You don’t know you are doing it.”

Ego loves to complain and feel resentful about situations and other people. What I am really saying is that I am right and the other person or situation is wrong. This makes me feel morally superior. It is the sense of superiority that the ego craves to enhance itself.

Whatever behavior ego manifests, the hidden motivating force is always the same. It is the need to stand out, be special, be in control, need for power, need for perfection, need to be right, need for attention, need to compare, need to take things personally, need for more and the need to feel a sense of separation.

I had a situation this week where my ego really reared its head. I felt misunderstood and reacted defensively. Thankfully, I recognized that it was my ego immediately and was able to come into the present moment.

I know that to become free of the ego is to be aware of it since awareness and ego are incompatible. Only PRESENCE can free me of my ego and I can only be present NOW, not yesterday or tomorrow.

As I become more conscious, I see how I have lived in the egoic consciousness for many years and didn’t know it. No right or wrong, shame or judgement as I wasn’t ready to see what I see until I was ready. How about you? Are you ready to see all the ways ego shows up in your life?   Remember, only awareness and PRESENCE can free you of your ego.  

What brings you JOY?

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I retired at the age of 62 as an Alcohol and Drug Therapist. I loved helping alcoholics and drug addicts find themselves and sobriety. It was a very rewarding career of 20 years and I was grateful for the opportunity to help save lives. Unfortunately, they all didn’t make it and some died from the disease.

My book, “Simply a Woman of Faith” was published when I retired and I became a Spiritual Life Coach. I led women’s retreats, was a speaker on a cruise ship, led a women’s retreat in Bermuda, had a weekly radio show, and was an inspirational speaker.

When I followed my heart and moved to Maui 10 ½ years ago, at the age of 65, my plan was to continue doing what I was doing. There were churches on every corner and I figured I would easily get on the speaking circuit. Little did I know, God had other plans that I didn’t know about.

I was only on Maui a week when I heard the small, still voice of God say, “I don’t want you to do ANYTHING. I want you to learn how to BE.” I was very surprised because I thought I knew how to BE. After all, I was a therapist and taught others how to BE.

By the grace of God, I listened to the voice within and didn’t do anything but relax and enjoy my life. I took long walks and enjoyed the birds and beauty all around me. I was blessed to share a two-bedroom condo with a couple that overlooked the ocean and I only paid $300 a month for 6 months.

At first, it was hard for me to relax without feeling guilty. I have several signs around the house that say RELAX. The little voice inside said, “You should be doing something to have value and worth. Your lazy and not contributing to society if you do nothing.”

What has been revealed to me over these past 10 ½ years was that I was a DOER. I felt more comfortable DOING than BEING. My value came from doing, producing, fixing, and achieving. I was a BUSYAHOLIC/RUSHAHOLIC. Relaxing and BEING felt like I was wasting time. Heaven forbid, I should waste time doing nothing. I am grateful I have learned how to BE, relax and GO WITH THE FLOW and do nothing.

Even though you may not be at the age of retirement and still have to work, you can still carve out time to BE and RELAX and ENJOY and not feel guilty when you are doing NOTHING.

Learning how to BE and living in the present moment has brought me to a place of indescribable JOY. I have never been happier and more alive than I am today. Henry Nouwen writes, “Joy does not simply happen to us. We have to choose joy and keep choosing it every day.”

 Here are some things that bring me joy and not in any particular order.

·        Daily walks and looking into someone’s eyes, smiling and greeting them with “Good morning.”

·        Snuggling on the couch with our dog Kobe next to me.

·        Sharing my faith with a stranger and writing a weekly blog to inspire others.

·        Spending sacred time with my children and grandchildren.

·        Spending time with Larry laughing and playing together.

·        Sitting on our lanai and watching the sunset or sunrise.

·        Reading a book at night in bed before going to sleep.

·        Tending to my garden and watching the flowers grow.

·        Walking the beach and swimming in the ocean.

·        Sending inspirational pictures and sayings to friends.

·        Learning how to make delicious, nutritious meals.

·        Going out to breakfast or lunch with a friend.

·        Surrounding myself with beauty and color. I LOVE color and only wear colors that I love, especially purple.

·        Meditating, prayer and listening to the voice of God within.

·        Dancing

What brings you JOY? Whatever it is, do it more often. It is a choice to be joyful. Today I Choose JOY. How about you?  

It’s all been planned in the mind of God

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Does a woman of faith experience fear? This woman of faith sure does. The difference from years ago is that I know what fear is, where it came from and what to do about it.

Right before going to bed one-night last week, Larry and I were discussing death. Neither one of us are afraid of dying, but we are not looking forward to being alone when the other partner dies. Larry thinks because he is older than me, he will die first. Of course, that’s not true.

After our death conversation before going to bed, it was no surprise that I woke up in the middle of the night feeling lots of fear in my gut.  All the “what ifs” were clamoring for attention. “Would I be able to stay on Maui if Larry dies first? Who would I call to help me? Would I be able to pay the rent alone?”

I allowed myself to feel the fear because I didn’t want to do a spiritual bypass. Once I was fully awake and recognized what was going on, I asked God for help and was able to fall back to sleep.

I kept repeating I CHOOSE LOVE. I CHOOSE LOVE. Fear and love cannot exist together. The peace eventually came. How easy it is to forget that I AM ONE WITH GOD and am not separate. Before I came into the world, I was ONE WITH GOD. I need to remember who I really am as a child of God. I remind myself, “I am not alone no matter what the external circumstances look like. I am ok, peaceful, trusting, surrendered, safe and protected.

For many years, I tried to avoid and resist my fears by staying busy and pushing myself to do and be more. I was never enough. I also tried to control my fears by attempting to control the environment that seemed to produce them. Rather than pushing down my fears, I have learned to live in the “messy middle” and try to stay out of the extremes of my feelings. This means allowing and welcoming all of my feelings, including fear. I don’t shame, judge or blame myself when I feel afraid or angry.  

I believe negativity is born out of our ego. Of course, fear can be helpful and can warn us of something that could be harmful in the present or the future. That’s not the kind of fear I am talking about. I love these statements; False Evidence Appearing Real and Face Everything and Recover. Fear is useless, what is needed is trust.

As we grow on the spiritual path, inevitable layers of buried fear are uncovered. The older we get, the deeper the memories go back that need God’s healing touch. We are moving through the layers of fear that have been built up over the years so we can embrace our inner child that is God-like, innocent, loving and fearless.

Whenever I am in the grips of fear about the future and what’s coming up or worrying and obsessing about something I have no control over, I remind myself that EVERYTHING IS ALREADY PLANNED IN THE MIND OF GOD. I can literally feel my body relax and I can breathe into the present moment.

For I know well the plans I have in mind for you declares the Lord. Plans to prosper you. Plans to give you hope and a future. Jer. 29-11

Here is a small example of how God has things under control and planned:

I was cleaning out an old bag and found some wrapped tissues that I hadn’t opened. God Bless You was written on them. I thought they would be good to have in my purse and tucked them in.

The next day as I took my walk on the ocean path, a couple of feet ahead of me was a woman who had just fell and was bleeding. Of course, she was quite shaken up and stunned. When I reached her to see how I could help her, she said, “Do you have any tissues?” I wiped her face that was bleeding, and her friend cleaned her hand and leg that was bleeding.

You may think this was a coincidence or not a big deal. I choose to believe that it was a God-incidence and planned in the mind of God. There are many BIG things that have happened in my life where I know it was planned in the mind of God.

How about you? Do you believe that everything is already planned in the mind of God?

I feel the peace that passes all understanding

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When I sit outside drinking my herbal tea, listening to the birds, feeling the gentle breeze on my face and watching the sailboats on the ocean, I feel the peace that passes all understanding that the Bible talks about.

“Just because everything is crazy around you, doesn’t mean everything has to be crazy within you.”

Living in peace has always been very important to me. Every morning the first thing I do is pray my intention.  “My intention is to be peaceful, to love, to serve, to be healthy and happy.”

When I started my recovery/awakening process over 40 years ago, I became aware that I was a “people pleaser” and looked outside of myself for approval. My self-esteem was like a yo-yo. If you liked and approved of me, I felt great. If you didn’t like and approve of me, my self-esteem went down the tubes. Clearly, it wasn’t self-esteem it was other esteem.

I believe in affirmations and have been using them for many years. My first affirmation was “I like and approve of the person I’m becoming.”  Whenever I got in my car and throughout the day, I would repeat it like a mantra.

Affirmations are messages to our subconscious that are establishing habitual ways of thinking and behaving. Positive affirmations are healing thoughts that help us develop self-confidence, self-esteem, self-love and will create peace of mind and inner joy. In essence, I am saying to my subconscious mind, “I am taking responsibility. I am aware that there is something I can do to change.” Here are the affirmations I say on a daily basis.

·        I am worthy and deserving to enjoy this amazing life that I have co-created with God. It flows with peace, ease, grace, love, patience, happiness, joy, forgiveness, abundance, prosperity and radiant health.

·        Everything I need is streaming toward me I open my hands and receive: Love, peace, joy, happiness, abundance, health.

·        I am peaceful, safe, and protected from anything and everything that doesn’t serve my highest good.

·        I am wealthy, healthy, strong, and fearless.

·        I cherish my own inner beauty and celebrate my bright light as it speaks of God.

·        I am healthy, whole, and healed and my immune system is very strong.

·        I am a woman giving birth to myself.

·        I am a star that shines brightly to lead others to the God within.

  • Money comes to me easily and effortlessly. I have more than enough.

I created these affirmations when I realized that I didn’t feel deserving and worthy of the life that I co-created with God. I felt guilty when I saw other’s I loved suffering and in pain.

I walk 1 ½ to 2 hours on the ocean path most days. Instead of obsessing, controlling, worrying, or trying to fix what’s going on in the world or in my family, I use this sacred time to repeat the above affirmations. I choose not to get sucked into drama and to allow others their journey and lessons. My responsibility is to pray, send love, keep my vibration high in love and gratitude and trust Spirit will take care of the rest better than I can.

The affirmations truly flow with peace, ease, and grace and I love using them as a meditation. When I finish my walk, I feel uplifted, refreshed, and peaceful. When I live in the NOW and the present moment, it is blissful.

I’m so grateful that Spirit has guided me to do this as I have never done it like this before. I believe my subconscious mind is being healed and transformed.  I’m much more aware of how my ego shows up with the old beliefs of not being good enough, having enough, lack, comparing, judging, feeling superior or inferior.

I encourage you to practice affirmations to change your life. As we change our thinking, our life will change.  Please feel free to use any of the above and create your own.

To know the truth of who I am

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I was dumbfounded when the first thing my 3-year-old grandson said on the phone was, “Why did you move away grandma?” I have no idea what I said.

Since the phone call, I have pondered this question for myself. I moved away:

  • To follow my heart and to do God’s will
  • To be an inspiration for others to follow their heart
  • To come home to myself and to the God within
  • To experience peace that passes all understanding
  • To know the truth of who I am. I am LOVE
  • To experience profound and true love with my husband
  • To heal and transform childhood trauma and abuse
  • To experience daily miracles and deeper forgiveness

Although my grandson could never understand this at his age, I’m living proof to my children and grandchildren that following your heart always brings you home to yourself and to the God within. Someday, they will remember that their grandmother had the courage, strength, and grace to live her dream and a life that was purposeful and fulfilling. There is not a better legacy that I could leave them.

As I think about all that has transpired these past 14 years since I wrote my first book, “Simply a Woman of Faith“, I am amazed and grateful at how far I have come. I remember a dream that I had while in the process of writing the book (which took me 7 years to write because I didn’t believe anyone would read it). I went to bed crying hysterically with fear about writing a book. I kept saying to God, “I can’t do it, I don’t know what I’m doing, you’ve chosen the wrong person.”  

I had a vivid dream that night that touched me deeply. I was walking up a staircase that was leading to heaven. When I reached the top, there was a beautiful star. I reached out my hand to touch the star and I became the star. An affirmation was born that I still repeat to myself. “I am a star that shines brightly to lead others to the God within.”

A couple of weeks ago, I met a mother and daughter while swimming at the Marriott pool. As we started to talk, Linda and Elizabeth shared they were together to grieve the death of their mother and grandmother a few months prior. It was so beautiful seeing them together and the love they had for one another.  

Elizabeth (the granddaughter) turned to me and said, “What is your story?” I love to share my story with whoever will listen. Of course, I started with how I moved to Maui by myself and knew that I would meet my soulmate. I also shared that we had just published our book, “It’s Never Too Late for Love.” They asked, “How can we get your books?” I met them the next day and they each bought a copy of both books.  

I received a text this week from Elizabeth. Here is what she wrote:

“I am currently on page 35 of your book “Simply a Woman of Faith” and I am just blown away by the work that God has done in your life. It’s incredible how God opens doors just when we think adversity has won. You have truly inspired me to listen more to God’s voice and lean more on Him rather than my own understanding, just as it says in proverbs. I am making more time now to read your book as part of my morning routine and I love how it makes me feel to make God a priority first thing in the morning. Your light shined when we met you and it continues to do so. Linda wants to order 6 books for her church group friends. May God continue to use you and bless you.”

I’m grateful and my heart sings that God has used me as His instrument to help and inspire others to go within and deepen their relationship to Spirit. I’m grateful I had the courage to face my fears and didn’t allow fear to rob me and keep me stuck.

“I am a star that shines brightly to lead others to the God within.”

I had to detach

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My friend and I met for our morning swim and chat on the beach. When I asked her, “How are you doing?” She replied, “Not very well. I’m worried about my brother who divorced his wife after 45 years of marriage.” I shared, “I’m concerned about my brother too. He fell several months ago and hurt his back. He’s not doing well.”

My brother has been in recovery for alcohol and drugs for almost 30 years. He was prescribed Percocet for the pain. As a therapist for 20 years treating addicts, I know how addictive this medication can be. I saw the devastation this drug caused for patients when they were prescribed it for their pain. My brother, up until now, wouldn’t go near this because he also knew how addictive it was.

I recently spoke to my brother, who lives 5000 miles away and I haven’t seen him in 10 years. I felt uneasy when I got off the phone as he didn’t seem himself. I didn’t know if he was abusing the Percocet and he didn’t appear open to discuss it.  Of course, I’m concerned about my brother and if he will be ok.

I’m allowing myself to feel my feelings and process them. I’m angry at this disease that has robbed my family for years. I’m sad that after 30 years of staying sober, he may be struggling with addiction.

As my friend and I shared, I said, “I refuse to allow anyone or anything to rob me of my peace. I have worked hard to get to this place in my life that I have co-created with God and I’m not willing to focus on something or someone that I have no control over.”

Instead of worrying, feeling fear, and trying to fix, I choose to pray and send love and light. I choose to trust Spirit that it is my brother’s journey and he has lessons he needs to learn. I wonder why we think we know what’s best for our friends and family? Worrying is an illusion and doesn’t do any good. When we worry, we think we have some kind of control.

I know what it’s like to have my mind feel like a blender that I can’t shut off. I know what it’s like to be awake at night ruminating about a problem that I have no control over. I’ve been there and done that and don’t want to do it anymore. It doesn’t work for me and never has.

Instead, I have learned to detach with love. I detach emotionally and don’t allow myself to get sucked into the moods and behaviors of those I love. When my mind is racing, I repeat DETACH until I feel calm and peaceful. There were times that I had to say it many times before my mind shut off. Detachment doesn’t mean disinterest. It truly is respecting another person’s journey and choices.

My time is sacred to waste living in the future or worrying about something I have no power over. I continue to focus on myself and what’s important to me. I have learned to let go of other people’s problems instead to trying to fix them.

I can detach and still love and still feel. I have learned to take care of my own problems while allowing others to take care of theirs. Today I detach with loving compassion. When I detach with love, I offer support by freeing those I care about to experience both the disappointments and successes in life.

Are you concerned or worried about a loved one? I encourage you to practice detaching emotionally and trusting it is their journey and lessons to learn.

 “I refuse to allow anyone or anything to rob me of my peace and well-being. I have worked hard to get to this place in my life that I have co-created with God and I’m not willing to focus on something or someone that I have no control over.”

It felt like I was on drugs

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I woke up in the middle of the night and felt high, like I was on drugs. But it wasn’t drugs, it was LOVE. I was high on LOVE feeling deep peace, gratitude and happiness. I knew it had to do with Kobe, our new fur baby family member. I can’t wait to see him first thing in the morning and give him love.

Kobe experienced some separation anxiety the first couple of days and followed Larry around like gum on a shoe. He sat at his feet in the kitchen while cooking and followed him everywhere, even to the bathroom.

By the fourth day, Kobe had found his special spots to sleep and was relaxed. He could not be a more perfect dog. It was like he was hand-picked from heaven. He doesn’t bark or beg for food. He is sweet, gentle, smart, house trained, loves to sit on our laps and be rubbed and go for long walks. His energy is peaceful expressing unconditional love.

I wondered, did he find us or did we find him? I think we attracted one another. I was curious and asked his past owner, “How long did you have him on Craigslist?”  I was shocked when she said, “I put him on in February.” We adopted him May 18th. I don’t know why he wasn’t adopted, other than he was meant for us and nothing could stop God’s perfect plan.

What I know in my heart, without a doubt, is that whatever is intended for us, will not go by us. I don’t have to force, push, or rush things to happen. When I live in faith and trust God is in charge, everything flows with peace, ease and grace and in God’s timing.

How often did I worry and fret and cause unnecessary suffering and stress because I wasn’t patient and wanted what I wanted and I wanted it NOW. Over the years, I have learned to relax, wait and be patient. God’s plan is so much better than my plan.

When Larry made a trip to Costco for dog food and treats, I could sense Kobe was unsettled since it was the first time Larry had left the house without him. He walks 2 ½ miles every morning with Larry. He sat at the front door and then ran to the computer room where he usually sits at Larry’s feet.

I decided to lay on the couch to see if I could settle him down. At first, he laid at my feet and then came up and snuggled at my side. When he put his little head on my arm and fell asleep, I was in heaven. We laid there together for 1 ½ hours while I rubbed his neck and head.

Although I had “plans” and things I wanted to get done while Larry was gone, there was nothing more important or no place else that I wanted to be than where I was. I couldn’t move, nor did I want to move. It truly was blissful to be in the present moment and experience deep love and gratitude.

I felt like I was in the presence of God. When I allow myself to rest in the presence of God, I experience deep peace, knowing I am being taken care of, all is well and I am safe. It was such a powerful experience that I wondered how much pleasure do we give God when we trust and rest in His presence? Something that I will ponder.

God’s unconditional love is always available to us 24/7. It will never fail us or abandon us. All we need to do is ASK, trust and believe.

Animals have the ability to give unconditional love, no matter how we treat them. It’s another example of God’s unconditional love for us, no matter what we do or don’t do.

Larry says, “God is loving me through Pat and God is loving Pat through me.” All the love we ever feel is God loving us. When Kobe lovingly stares at us, it is God loving us through Kobe.

I feel so grateful and blessed for this opportunity to give and receive “doggie” love.  My daily affirmation:  Feel free to use it for yourself.

“I am worthy and deserving to enjoy and celebrate this amazing life that I have co-created with God. It flows with love, peace, grace, joy, happiness, gratitude, prosperity, abundance and radiant health.”

We celebrated our 4 year anniversary

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About 6 months ago I said to Larry, “I would love for us to get a small dog, what do you think?” He said, “I know who would end up doing all the work.” He was probably right and dropped it. I wasn’t even sure our landlord would approve.

I have learned that when I make a suggestion or have an idea to do something different with Larry, he needs to sit with it and think about it. I don’t push, nag, drop hints because I know if it’s meant to be, it will be.

Last week we celebrated our 4th wedding anniversary. The week before our anniversary, when I came home from my walk, Larry called me into the computer room and said, “Look what I found on line. I was thinking of surprising you for our anniversary. I decided to show you to see what you thought.”

 It was the cutest little white Maltese dog. I couldn’t believe that it was still available since small dogs on Maui are in high demand. Larry filled out the application and waited for a call from the agency. The woman called the next day and said, “There are 2 dogs and they have to stay together. They were both 11 years old and one was partly blind and deaf.” It didn’t sound like a fit.

I was so touched that Larry wanted to surprise me with a dog for our anniversary. I had no idea he was even thinking about it.  I started to affirm, “The perfect and right dog is here now.” I felt relaxed, peaceful, detached and knew that the dog would show up.

Larry was chatting with his son and told him we were thinking of adopting a dog and he suggested looking on Craigslist. A couple of days later, Larry sends me an email with a picture of a dog while on my walk. “What do you think of this small dog?” 

He wasn’t exactly what I was thinking of, but he looked adorable. I was open and said, “Yes, I would like to see him.” Larry called the number in the ad and we made an appointment for the next day. We met the owner and “Rosko” in an empty parking lot in town. We were both kind of nervous and felt like we were adopting a baby. It’s a big commitment and responsibility that we would take seriously. It had been several decades that we had dogs.

As soon as Rosko jumped out of the car, we both fell in love. I could feel Larry’s enthusiasm when he said, “He’s the perfect size for us.” He’s 13 pounds, 11 years old, in perfect health and loves walks, people and other dogs. When I picked him up to hold him, he licked me with my mask on. Rosko’s owner is moving to China and has to rehome him.

We often have to wait and be patient for our prayers to be answered. I had to wait 15 years to meet my beloved, Larry. God’s timing is never early, never late, but always right on time.

It’s been less than 2 weeks since Larry had the “divine idea” to adopt a small dog. I asked Rosko’s owner, “How long has the ad been on Craigslist?” She said, “It’s been on awhile and I wasn’t in a rush. I wanted to find the right home for Rosko. There have been many inquiries, but they didn’t work out.”

God saved Rosko for us and the timing was perfect. My intention and prayer, “The right and perfect dog is here NOW” was answered. We are very excited to welcome Rosko into our family. It feels like a match made in heaven. Here’s the process that worked for me.

* Ask for what you want

* Believe you will receive it

* Affirm what you want (the perfect dog is here now)

* Wait for God’s timing – never late, never early

* Be patient or try to make things happen

* Detach from outcome

* Trust in God’s divine plan and timing

Everything happens for me, not to me

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Many years ago, my best friend said to me, “Pat, you are very defensive.”  Can you guess how I responded? I said, “What do you mean? I’m not defensive.” Isn’t it amazing when we are unconscious or not awake that we don’t recognize behaviors in ourselves that are unhealthy? I truly wasn’t aware how defensive I was until she confronted me and I became willing to look at myself.

It has taken me years of “undoing” behaviors that didn’t serve me or anyone else. Whenever I am defensive, I am living from a victim consciousness and forgetting the truth of who I am as a divine being and loved unconditionally.

A victim consciousness is believing things and experiences happen TO me, not FOR me. It’s poor me, nothing works out for me, why me, etc. It’s about blaming others, manipulation, taking things personally and always wanting to be right or having the last word. It’s about reacting, rather than responding.

When I REMEMBER that everything happens FOR me, I am trusting that the Universe is working on my behalf and often behind the scenes.

  • It’s knowing that everything is already planned in the mind of God and nothing is against me.
  • It’s knowing that I can relax, trust, surrender and enjoy my life.
  • It’s knowing Spirit wants only my happiness and that I am loved.
  • It’s knowing that everything that happens and every button that is pushed is a gift.

My buttons were pushed this week and I had the opportunity to practice not reacting, but responding in love.

Growing up, I was a people pleaser. I didn’t speak up, say no, ask for what I wanted, set boundaries and expected my loved ones to read my mind. Can you relate?

We often teach what we need to learn. I learned assertiveness skills and asked for what I wanted and deserved. When I worked as a therapist at the VA hospital, I taught weekly assertiveness groups for years. Little did the patients know how I was learning and practicing right along with them.

As I learned new assertiveness skills, I spoke up about EVERYTHING. When you are learning a new skill or behavior, the pendulum often swings to one direction until it gets back into balance. It was empowering to speak up, not be a doormat, and not be afraid to say no or set a boundary. My children didn’t particularly like my new behaviors as they liked getting their own way.

In our marriage, my having “to be right” and have the last word still shows up at times. Rather than always “speaking up” I’m practicing “shutting up” and not REACTING. Here is what happened:

I was cooking something in the oven and it wasn’t done for another 10 minutes. I had an appointment and had to leave the house. I asked Larry, “Would you please take it out of the oven when it is done?” He agreed and I didn’t think it was a big deal because he is always helpful and was preparing something in the kitchen.  

When I returned home, I thanked him and said, “I appreciate you cleaning up everything.” He politely and appropriately said, “I would appreciate it in the future if you didn’t leave the house with things in the oven.”

I quietly said, “OK.” This was NEW behavior for me because it was not what I wanted to say. I was so angry and wanted to blast him. I asked God for help, let go and surrendered to “what is.”

Instead of REACTING with words that I would have regretted, I RESPONDED with love and said, “OK.” I quietly went to the bedroom and wrote my anger until it was all out of me and then ripped the paper up. I don’t think Larry even knew I was angry.

When we came together that night, I was completely free with no residual from the incident. In the past, I would have had to share my experience and discuss what happened. I felt peaceful and didn’t have to say a word. I will speak my truth with what is important and let go of what isn’t.  

A few days later as we were chatting about something unrelated to what happened, Larry commented, “I noticed that you didn’t REACT when I was feeling out of sorts this week. Thank you.”

I’m grateful for the grace to continually look at my behaviors and am willing to change. I’m responsible for my happiness and peace.

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Pat Hastings

Author, Inspirational Speaker, Spiritual Coach, Retreat Leader & Radio Talk Show Host

Simply A Woman of Faith
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