“The spiritual life is a lot like gardening. We till and cultivate the garden of our heart, planting seeds of presence, openness, and the ability to respect whatever arises. We water each one so the things which are beautiful in us can blossom.” Jack Kornfield
We must pull up the ROOTS if we don’t want weeds growing in our “inner garden.” Your mind is like a garden, your thoughts are the seeds, the harvest can either be flowers or weeds.” Your choice.
When I get triggered like I did this week, I see it as an opportunity to recognize what weeds are growing in my garden. It’s also a gift if I’m willing to dig deep and get to the ROOT of the problem and pull out the weeds.
Rather than blaming, judging, shaming the person who triggered me or withdrawing and being resentful, I eventuallytook responsibility for my behaviors and reactions.
I was triggered by what one of my sons said to me. I immediately REACTED and said what was on my mind and it wasn’t pretty! At the moment, I didn’t see it as a gift or opportunity. I felt hurt, angry, saddened, and judged by my son. My ego was alive and well as I told myself a “story” about our relationship that wasn’t true.
I journaled and allowed myself to feel it all, without judging myself or my feelings. I knew that allowing myself to really go into the sadness and anger would enable me to release it and EXPAND. I shared it with Larry and that helped get it up and out. He was loving and compassionate and didn’t try to fix me.
The next morning, I spent time alone to go within. I felt a lot of pain as tears flowed down my cheeks. I wanted to get to the ROOT of the problem. As a child, I could never PLEASE my mother and didn’t feel good enough no matter how hard I tried.
Whenever we are triggered by what someone does or says to us, it can be an indication that there is something inside of us that needs healing and transformation. I reacted strongly to my son’s remark and projected this unhealed pain still inside of me on him. Rather than looking outside and expecting my son to give me what I needed or wanted, I knew I needed to give it to myself. I am the only one that can heal deep mother wounds, no matter how many years it takes.
I AM THE ONE I HAVE BEEN WAITING FOR. YOU ARE THE ONE YOU HAVE BEEN WAITING FOR.
I was given the opportunity to give myself the love, understanding, respect, compassion, and appreciation that I wanted from my son. Of course, it’s human nature to want all of the above from our children, but I cannot control what others do or don’t do.
After getting to the ROOT and pulling out the weeds (negative thoughts), I felt free and alive. I have never done this before, but I called my son and said, “Thank you for triggering me yesterday.” He was surprised and wasn’t even sure what I was talking about at first. We laughed and he said, “Your welcome mom, anytime.” I took responsibility for my reaction and being triggered.
A message from Spirit:
Dear Patricia, you are a miracle how you have grown and transformed your life. I’m so proud of you for your positive attitude, your faith, and how you are a vessel of love. Nothing and no one can take that away from you. Don’t let the remark from your son take your peace and power away. He loves you. Let it go. You just keep loving and living your life the way you do. All is well.
Thank you, Spirit for the willingness and grace to DIG deep and free myself from beliefs and behaviors that no longer serve me. I am choosing flowers rather than weeds in my garden. How about you? What are you choosing?
Do you have a hard time making decisions? Are you trying to make a decision about something now in your life? Instead of making a decision and taking action, do you have a tendency to stay stuck and do nothing? Doing nothing is a choice. Perhaps you don’t have all the information you need to make the decision or it’s just not the right timing. All of these are valid reasons for not making a decision. It is a conscious choice you are making.
Sometimes it’s fear when you don’t make a decision one way or the other. Fear is insidious and you may not even recognize it as fear. You may be afraid to make the wrong decision because you don’t trust yourself, so you do nothing. Fear can block you and keep you” stuck in the muck” and therefore you will miss God’s plan for your life.
I didn’t know it was fear when I put my book to bed for 6 years. I am so grateful that God never gave up on me and I became willing to face my fears and write my book, “Simply a Woman of Faith.” I wouldn’t be living the life of my dreams in Maui with Larry.
You may not know what you really want and that is why it takes so long to make a decision. That’s ok because it often takes time to know what we really want. I believe knowing what we want is the key to moving forward. Once we know what we really want and have asked for Spirit’s guidance, we can begin to take some steps in the direction we want and doors will open often miraculously.
When I was making the decision whether to move to Maui for 6 months, I drove myself crazy with all of my questions of HOW it could happen. I talked to friends and did the pros and cons and prayed for God’s will. I discovered at the bottom of it all was the belief that I didn’t deserve it. I cleared that belief quickly. I finally got sick of myself going back and forth and not knowing what I was doing. I needed an answer and asked Spirit for help. I got quiet and simply said, “I’m moving back to Rhode Island.” Immediately, my hand went over my heart and I let out of a GASP. It felt so heavy and I knew in my heart what my answer was. When I said, “I’m going to live in Maui for 6 months” I had an incredible peace and knowing. The rest is history.
I have learned to “go within” to trust my intuition (which I believe is God) to make decisions in what feels right in the moment. I also know that I can change my mind if I want to. This is what happened this week:
A few months ago, I met a lovely spiritual woman at an art show. We briefly shared our lives and both felt like we wanted to get to know one another better. She facilitates dream circles and we discussed the possibility of having them at our home. I gave her my card and she said, “I will be in contact to get together.” I forgot about it and didn’t hear from her until last week.
She emailed me and wanted to get together to discuss the dream circles. With my present health challenges and restrictive diet, I didn’t have the energy or the desire to get together with her. I responded and said,
“Thank you for writing, but the dream circles are not going to work for me at this time.”
She responded and said, “I understand about the dream circles, but would you like to meet for tea or coffee?”
I still didn’t have the desire to get together and decided to be honest with her.
I responded and said, “I have some health challenges that I am dealing with right now so it’s not going to work for me.”
She was quite gracious and responded, “I healed myself after a 2-year illness. If there is anything I can do, please let me know.”
Something inside of me shifted and I knew I wanted to meet with her. I gave myself permission to change my mind. I sensed she had something important to tell me and I was open.
I responded and said, “I would like to meet for tea and hear about how you healed yourself.”
We met a few days ago and it was quite interesting, but not surprising, when she told me what her 2-year illness was and how she healed it
She said, “I had digestive/gut problems for 2 years that western medicine couldn’t figure out. I went to a Naturopath doctor and he diagnosed me with chronic parasites. I have been healed through diet, herbs and supplements.” We are on the same diet and shared our experiences with one another.
What a confirmation that I am on the right track with my health and what I am doing to heal myself. I am grateful that I listened to my intuition and changed my mind to get together with her. Spirit is always guiding us to give us what we need and help us make decisions for our highest good as we “go within” and listen.
There is one thing we all have in common and that is we are getting older day by day.
Like it or not, it is the truth and we can’t stop the process. We can choose to take care of our bodies by living a healthy lifestyle by eating well and exercising. I choose to stay healthy by doing yoga and aerobics weekly, as well as walking and swimming.
It’s not easy to admit that I can’t physically do the things I used to do, even though I want to. I don’t hear as well and have to say, “Excuse me.” I asked my daughter if she thought I needed a hearing aid and she said, “No!” She has just learned to speak louder. I don’t see as well and need eye glasses. It’s embarrassing when in the middle of a sentence, I can’t remember the word, or I forget what I went into the bedroom for. I am grateful that my friends understand and are in the same boat when we finish each other’s sentence. Can you relate?
- Do I ACCEPT and welcome the aging process gracefully or do I deny it and push myself to do things because I don’t want to look weak or old?
- Do I ACCEPT my limitations and natural progression or do I beat up on myself?
- Do I ACCEPT my grey hair, wrinkles and saggy skin?
- Do I ACCEPT my chicken skin neck?
- Do I ACCEPT all the supplements I have to take to stay healthy?
- Do I accept the aches and pains that just seem to appear out of nowhere?
Sometimes it takes me awhile to ACCEPT something I have no control over; like when my arms “jiggle” or when I see my “crinkly” skin that looks like my grandmothers did. I ask myself, “How and when did this happen?” I look around at other women to see if their skin is “crinkly” like mine. What difference does it make, who cares?
The truth is my body is aging and doing what it needs to do. I am invited to love it – all of it. I am learning to laugh at myself and what is happening with my body and mind. When I share with a friend about forgetting, they say, “I am so glad you shared that because I am not alone.”
The other day Larry said to me, “Look at my hands, they look OLD.” We both laughed knowing it was the truth. We know we are in the WINTER of our journey on earth. We live each day in gratitude and love. We are not promised tomorrow and we don’t know when our train is coming in. Larry says he wakes up each morning with a heart full of gratitude and ends the day with a heart full of gratitude. I do the same.
I would like to share with you the BLESSING OF THE HANDS that we said to each other on our wedding day.
BLESSING OF THE HANDS
- These are the hands of your best friend, strong and full of love for you. They are holding yours today as you promise to love each other today, tomorrow and forever.
- These are the hands that will work alongside yours, as you continue your future together.
- These are the hands that will passionately love and cherish you through the years and with the slightest touch will comfort you like no other.
- These are the hands that will hold you when you fear or grief fills your mind.
- These are the hands that will give you strength when you need it, support and encouragement to pursue your dreams, and comfort you in difficult times.
- Most importantly, always remember that these are God’s hands loving you.
- And lastly, these are the hands that even when wrinkled and aged, will still be reaching for yours, still giving you the same unspoken tenderness and love with just a touch.
My prayer for all of us is that we will welcome the aging process gracefully, that we ACCEPT “what is” and appreciate what we do have. Rather than focusing on what’s not working or missing, we focus on what is working. Let us accept and love our bodies and minds; wrinkles, crinkles, sagging and everything else. Let us celebrate who we are and how far we have come.
Gratitude is my attitude as I focus on and appreciate the beauty around me; the flowers, sunsets, birds, trees and ocean. I appreciate my family and friends for the love and support they give me.
I have to admit I am a recovering “RUSHAHOLIC, BUSYAHOLIC AND DOAHOLIC.” I have to be honest and admit I had a RELAPSE. I felt irritable, restless, tired and nothing seemed to satisfy me. I had lost my peace and didn’t know how, why or what to do about it, at first.
These are old behaviors that no longer serve me or make me feel good about myself. For much of my life, when I was doing, achieving, pleasing others and trying to make things happen in my life, I felt a sense of control and power. Today, I know these behaviors will make me sick. When I had a to-do list and crossed things off, I felt worthy of love. I enjoyed being busy because I felt like I was valuable when I was achieving and accomplishing so much. Have you ever felt like this?
Some of the signs of a DOAHOLIC are that you fill your calendar with things to do and tasks to complete. Your “free time” must be used effectively or you feel guilty or selfish. You are unable to RELAX and do nothing. With any addiction, it is because we try to avoid our feelings rather than go within and deal with them. I stayed busy because I didn’t want to feel the pain inside of me such as unworthiness, inadequacy, fear, shame and not being good enough.
I know today that these behaviors are ego-generated and fear based and not the truth of who I am or what God wants for me in my life. You may not be a DOAHOLIC, BUSYAHOLIC OR RUSHAHOLIC. You may suffer from being a FOODAHOLIC, WORKAHOLIC, ALCOHOLIC, GAMBLAHOLIC, or SHOPAHOLIC. The list is endless.
Unfortunately, this “pattern of energy” of always having to do more, look good and be more left me exhausted and unfulfilled because I never felt like I was doing enough. Can you relate?
My life is different today. Instead of pushing, achieving and making things happen, I am learning to allow and surrender to the Love within me to guide me. I am practicing “living in the moment” and letting go of worry and fear. I know that Love is all there is and everything else is just a dream. Today I proclaim to be a “PEACEAHOLIC.”
Peace is very important to me and my daily prayer and intention is to be peaceful, to love and to serve. I don’t like it when I lose my peace and I am restless or irritable, especially with Larry. I want to fix it and change it and I have a difficult time “accepting what is.”
As I said, I had a relapse to old behaviors of BUSYNESS AND DOING. I prayed and asked God for help. Here is what happened this week:
I felt tired, restless and irritable and couldn’t figure out why. I felt some guilt and shame because I thought I SHOULD be blissful and happy because we were just married and my dream had come true. At first, I felt embarrassed and didn’t want to admit it or talk about it.
I decided to Google “after wedding crash.” Sure enough, there were many articles to read and this was very REAL After the high and excitement of the wedding, all of the energy put out with planning, decision making and the attention I received, of course, there would be a crash and a feeling of “Now what.” I missed the DOING and excitement of the high! It felt just like the addict who puts the needle in his arm to get a high. I then realized I was in withdrawal.
The first step for me was asking for help from Spirit. The second step was admitting that I had relapsed to old behaviors and that I had these feelings. The third step was to be honest and share them with Larry. Of course, Larry was so loving, understanding and compassionate. He encouraged me to rest and relax and not do anything to push myself. I listened and spent the day resting, relaxing and loving myself. It is amazing how quickly I moved through it and am back to the truth of who I am as a Divine being. I am valuable and lovable and don’t need to prove myself or achieve anything to be loved.
It is easy to relapse to old behaviors or addictions, whether it be to food, doing, alcohol or shopping. The important thing is to not beat up on ourselves and stay there. We need to be loving, compassionate and forgiving toward ourselves.
I had lost my peace and recognized something was off and I didn’t feel in my center. I want balance and peace in my life. Because I am vigilant and “go within” for my answers in daily prayer and meditation, this only lasted for a couple of days. I am grateful to Spirit for the love in my life and the vessel of love I am being called to be in the world.
There were several lessons or opportunities that I could have written about this week, but it would have probably been only a sentence or two, not a whole blog. Spirit is faithful and has never let me down over the last 9 years that I have been writing the blogs. I prayed and asked to be led to share what would be for the highest good for all.
This is what I received when I opened my email this morning. “Appreciation is the magic formula you’ve been seeking.” —Abraham
It is my belief that the more I appreciate myself, the more I appreciate other people in my life. I not only appreciate other people but I am learning to appreciate everything in my life. I have an “Appreciation Practice” that I practice every night before I fall off to sleep.
Instead of a nightly review of the day in my mind about where I need to change or grow or what I don’t like about myself, I think about all that I appreciate about MYSELF that day. Sometimes the list is short and other times it is quite long. Nothing is too small and it really feels good when I am done thinking of things I appreciate about myself. Often during the day, if I am tempted to say or do something that is not aligned with Spirit, I will think about the appreciation practice at night and it helps me to do the right thing.
Having a daily practice like this motivates me the next day to do the same things and more. Often during my prayer and meditation, someone will come to mind that Spirit wants me to reach out to. I send a quick text reminding them that they are loved. Larry has seen me on my phone during prayer and says, “Pat is calling God.”
To give you an example of what this look likes, I will share some of the things I appreciate about myself. Of course, this is an accumulation of things I appreciate and every day is different. These are simple things and not great things. Of course, your list will be different if you choose to do this.
- I appreciate that I did my weights this morning
- I appreciate that I ate healthy and stayed away from sugar
- I appreciate that I kept my mouth shut when I really wanted to speak my mind
- I appreciate that I was kind to the cashier at the supermarket
- I appreciate that I called my friend to say hello and send love
- I appreciate that I didn’t judge someone that I wanted to
- I appreciate that I had a “Pat Day” and played and had fun
- I appreciate that I processed my anger and was able to let it go
- I imprecate that I said no because I didn’t want to do something
- I appreciate that I prayed and meditated
- I appreciate that I set boundaries and spoke up
- I appreciate that I let go of control
- I appreciate the choices I made that brought me peace
- I appreciate how I take care of my body, mind and Spirit
- I appreciate how I am asking Spirit for guidance in everything
- I appreciate how I love my family and friends
- I appreciate my creativity
- I appreciate how I trust God to provide for all of my needs
- I appreciate how I am able to receive all that is given to me
- I appreciate that I kept my word
- I appreciate that I listened to Spirit for guidance and followed through
- I appreciate how I chose LOVE instead of FEAR
I encourage you to try this practice and let me know how it works. I guarantee you that miracles will happen. Maryann Williamson ays, “A miracle is a change in thinking.” Rather than focusing on what’s missing or lacking in your life, your focus is on what’s working and what is good. When we do this, we attract more good into our lives.
I know that some people are wondering why I changed my mind about marriage after being so against marrying again. I don’t know if I can really explain the“shift” in me that led to my wanting to marry Pat. I know that if Pat had nagged or pushed me to marry her, I would probably not have experienced the “shift” that occurred. Sometimes when the energy of love is present, things happen and we can’t explain why or how.
I began thinking again of how different males and females think and how different our perspectives are. I am a lot more conservative than Pat and she is much more flexible and creative than I am. I’m not as open to change as much as she is. I think it may be a male thing. When I’m in a good place and life is going along perfectly, I don’t want to change it. I just want to take time to enjoy it. Pat likes to make choices that would expand our awareness and that sometimes means making changes.
If I hadn’t decided to take a chance and commit to a serious relationship, we wouldn’t be where we are now, living together and engaged to be married. It was a big decision for me to move in together because I was happy living alone in my own place.
I wasn’t all that keen on taking a cruise to Australia almost two years ago and that turned out great.
If I hadn’t changed my mind and gone on the Hawaii cruise, (I really didn’t want to do at first),
I don’t know if I would have experienced the “shift” in me that started me thinking that perhaps marriage could be in our future.
When Pat suggests that we do something out of the ordinary that will stretch me my default seems to be NO THANK YOU! She has learned to plant the seed, back off and let me think about it. Sometimes after I think about the suggestion for awhile, I come around.
I’m thinking that the energy of LOVE is always calling us to a greater consciousness, encouraging us to grow by recognizing our fears and deleting them from our lives. From my experience, sometimes that can be very uncomfortable. What’s important to me is that I continue my journey and not allow fear to determine which direction to go.
It is the season of GIVING. Scripture says, “There is more joy in giving than in receiving.” I love to give small gifts and see the appreciation on people’s faces when they receive a gift that was unexpected. I also enjoy receiving and have learned to not only receive gifts, but more importantly to open my heart to receive love, kindness and support from others. There are many reasons why it’s difficult for people to receive, one of them being that they feel undeserving.
Since moving to Maui 5 years ago, I have encountered many “Maui Angels” who have loved and supported me and invited me into their homes when I had no place to live when I was in between ohanas. Some people I had just met and was so taken aback by their love, generosity and kindness. It is a humbling experience and not always easy to receive from people you don’t know that well, especially when you feel so vulnerable and needy.
I have learned to receive through these many experiences and, consequently, I look for opportunities to GIVE LOVE, especially if I hear someone is in need of temporary housing. This is the opportunity Spirit presented to Larry and I that I would like to share with you.
About 6 months ago, my friend, Kerri, called asking for prayers for her close friend, Cindy, who had been diagnosed with Guillian Barre Syndrome (after the flu a couple of weeks earlier) that left her paralyzed and she couldn’t speak well. Cindy was in the hospital in Oahu in the ICU and Cardiac Unit. Her family was on the mainland and she was all alone. The doctors were not optimistic and said it would take 1-3 years before complete recovery.
I couldn’t imagine what that experience must have been like for Cindy and my heart went out to her. Kerry invited me to a prayer vigil with another friend who knew Cindy. I sent Cindy a card and immediately started to pray for her recovery. I prayed for her daily for months, along with many others from around the world.
I invited Kerry to my home this week to share with friends her experience as a Harmonium practitioner (Body, Mind & Spirit Healing System.) I was thrilled and surprised when Kerry told me that Cindy was recovering and coming with her. Here it was only 6 months since she was diagnosed and she was walking on her own and speaking. It truly was miraculous and the power of prayer in action.
Cindy knew that I had been praying for her and was so grateful when we finally met and hugged one another. I felt like I knew her, although I had never met her-only energetically. We are all connected and ONE.
I sat next to Cindy during Kerry’s presentation and we chatted a little. She said (as her face lit up), “After such a traumatic experience, there are so many gifts from it.” I wanted to get to know her and hear about all that Spirit had done in her life. She said, “While I was alone in the hospital bed, I looked up at the ceiling and asked God to help me RECEIVE. I felt the LOVE POWER coming through the tiles and I knew people were praying for me. It was an incredible experience.”
Cindy said, “I am house-sitting for a few weeks and need a place to live at the end of the month until my ohana (which she sublet while in the hospital) is ready at the beginning of January. I heard the still, small voice of God say, “You could invite her to stay here.” I didn’t say anything to her because I wanted to talk to Larry first. The next morning I shared Cindy’s story with Larry and he said, “Yes, of course she can stay with us.”
I called Kerry to discuss it with her first since I really didn’t know Cindy. She said, “I will be seeing Cindy this afternoon and will discuss the possibility of her staying with you. Kerry called that night and said, “Cindy is so grateful and thrilled that she can stay with you and Larry.” I called Cindy to confirm and here is what she said happened that morning before she spoke to Kerry about staying with us. It appears Spirit was getting her ready as she opened herself to RECEIVE even more good into her life.
“My recent experience with RECEIVING has skyrocketed after a wonderful experience at Pat’s home last night. I felt a calm sense of openness being in the presence of such love-filled inquisitive women. Pat and I had talked about receiving and when I woke up the next morning, I was filled with excitement about expanding my capacity to receive. For a couple of hours, I wrote my thoughts and feelings from sadness to laughter about how I learned to protect myself because of things that happened to me in my childhood. I truly get the importance of letting go of those experiences to allow space to allow more goodness to flow. Once the flow starts, it’s only upwards from there!”
Giving and receiving go hand in hand. When we do one without the other (giving and not receiving or receiving and not giving) there will be an imbalance and we will be out of alignment with Spirit. I see this experience of opening our home and hearts as an opportunity to GIVE and for Cindy it is the opportunity to RECEIVE. A win-win for all of us and I have a feeling we will also RECEIVE a lot.
I’ve been trying to be conscious of living in the moment and accepting whatever comes along. While trying to do that last week, I had an interesting experience of RECEIVING that I would like to share with you.
I have mentioned before that I have a ongoing battle with skin cancer. I had my six month checkup last week with my dermatologist and as usual they discovered some pre-cancerous cells and removed them. Doctor also found some basil cell cancer which he biopsied and removed.
For about a year I have been using a prescription cream (zyclara) on my face which attacks pre-cancerous cells before they can become actual cancer and it has been very effective. The price of the prescription was $75.00 and it is not covered by my insurance.
The day after my doctors visit I went on line to order my prescription and found that I could no longer purchase it for $75.00. The company had gone out of business and the best price I could find was $1000.00.
This development left me in an interesting situation and I had a decision to make. Would I continue to use the zyclara at $1000.00 a clip (which I cannot afford do to for the rest of my life because I will soon exhaust my savings and my livelihood will be threatened) or do I stop using the prescription and just depend on my regular visits to my doctor and hope he will be able to find the cancers and handle them with surgery, which my insurance covers.
I said to myself, “Live in the moment and accept, accept, accept.” The next evening around 8:00 pm. I received a call from my doctor informing me that the biopsy was indeed basil cell cancer, but he had removed all of it with the biopsy procedure. I had the opportunity to tell him about the cost change in the Zyclara. He is very happy with the results I am having with the medicine and didn’t want me to stop using it. When I informed him that it was to expensive for me to use, he offered to give me a years supply at no cost to me.
WOW! I was blown away! What a beautiful example of his generosity and caring and an early Christmas present for me. I am thrilled knowing that I have a doctor that really cares and is willing to go the extra mile for his patients.
I’m sorry that it has taken me so long to learn to “accept” and not resist, to stay open to the energy of love and trust that miracles can happen.
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.
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.
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.
People often comment to me that I inspire them. I love to hear that because it is truly my mission and desire to INSPIRE people to “go within” and find God. I believe that it is only by “going within” that I have discovered Love and embraced my greatness, power and divinity. I want everyone to know that the same Love, greatness and divinity is inside of them. Here is a part of an email that I received from a woman after reading our last blog. It touched my heart.
“I loved your post today. Both you and Larry’s writing really spoke to me and I want to start changing the way I live. I get up each day and feel like I go from branch to branch like a monkey and before I know it, half the day is over and I don’t know where it goes. I want to change that. Thank you for leading me to “The Spirit Post.” I want to take the time each day now when I awake to read one article, poem to start my day. You both have lifted my spirit weekly when I receive your posts. I want to thank you and Larry for giving me just what I was looking for to keep me centered in my spiritual world. I had gotten away from my spirituality and I feel you both have helped to bring it back.”
I am celebrating my 4th year anniversary of moving to Maui. The gratitude and joy I feel is beyond words and indescribable. I didn’t know HOW I could do it nor did I have the answers before I took the leap of faith and followed my heart 5,000 miles away from all I loved in my life. I just knew I had to follow my heart. Even though I couldn’t see what was ahead for my future, I trusted God to lead me and stepped out in faith.
When I was in the throes and thick of fear while writing my book, I often cried myself to sleep because I didn’t know HOW to do it or think that I COULD DO IT! I felt so overwhelmed by the whole ordeal of publishing and marketing a book that I put my manuscript to bed for a whole year. I said to God, “You have chosen the wrong person, I am not doing it.” I didn’t care that I had already spent lots of money and time on editing and writing workshops. What is interesting is that I didn’t know it was FEAR. I was in total DENIAL and told myself, “I just don’t want to do it.”
It wasn’t until I was preparing to lead a retreat called, “Love is letting go of fear” that my eyes were opened. Until I admitted to myself, God and another person that it was fear, I stayed stuck with a manuscript almost finished in my drawer. Once I admitted that is was fear, I asked God for help. I asked to be led and literally within 2 days my answers came and I had the direction I needed to finish my book. It was a year later, (after 6 years of writing) that “Simply a Woman of Faith” was published.
My God is patient and waited for a year for me to come around and say YES to His plan. I had to be willing, surrender my doubts and fears and ask for guidance. I am so grateful for God’s grace and that I trusted God’s plan for my life. What I know with all my heart is that God’s plan is to prosper me and it is always GOOD. God has placed your dreams and desires in your heart and will help you manifest them. You don’t need to know HOW they will happen. All you need to know is what your dreams are.
Is God calling you to step out of the boat and take a leap of faith into the unknown? It may be leaving a marriage that is no longer working or a job that bores you to death and you are not living your dream? Only you know what is in your heart and what is holding you back. Don’t let your dreams die inside of you.
If I hadn’t identified my fears and asked for help, I would not be living with my soul mate on Maui and living the life of my dreams. Fear is useless, what is needed is trust. Fear is False Evidence Appearing Real.
Do we realize how much we allow fear to affect our lives? How often do we allow fear to determine what decisions we make or don’t make. Fear is so insidious and hides itself so completely that we don’t even know it’s there inside of us making our lives miserable. The more we allow fear to go unrecognized, the worse it gets. Have you ever been in a situation where you just can’t make a decision and you don’t know why?
When I sold my catering business I was 45 years old and had to find a way to make a living. I didn’t want to admit it, but fear was my constant companion. I felt frightened and alone. I was going through a divorce after 21 years of marriage and had to find a new place to live and get used to living alone. I struggled with this because my life had changed so dramatically in a short time. It’s very difficult for a man to admit that he’s afraid because we are taught to be strong, macho and the protectors. Fear is viewed as weak and shameful.
I think many men push fear down and medicate it with one addiction or another. We are often not even aware that it is fear- related. After a while I thought, “Perhaps I’d like to meet someone but dating over the last 21 years had really changed. Being 20 years older didn’t help with my self- confidence either.” Just the thought of dating was scary. Did I want to put myself out there, become vulnerable and take the risk of getting hurt again? I struggled through that and at times it wasn’t pretty, but I persevered and eventually I became comfortable with the single life and dating again. As I look back at those years, I think it could have been a lot easier if I had the consciousness that I have today.
What I didn’t realize back then was that I had a choice. There is another power available to us that is stronger than fear, more powerful than anything created by humankind, that is the power of LOVE! We don’t have to go through life’s difficulties alone and allow fear to paralyze us.
I have learned that LOVE is the energy and light of GOD. LOVE is offered to us every moment of every day. We can’t earn it because it is a gift just waiting to be accepted. I can choose fear or I can choose LOVE. I know this sounds simple and it is, but it’s not easy. I had to stop thinking that I wasn’t worthy or good enough to receive LOVE. I learned love cannot be earned. Like most of us, I’ve made mistakes in my life and, at times, felt like I haven’t measured up. How many of you have felt that way? I realized LOVE is never a question of worthiness. We just need to be open to receive the unconditional gift that is being offered.
You may want to try this response the next time you feel fear threatening you. I say something like this, “I am not accepting fear in this situation, I delete all fearful thoughts, I CHOOSE THE POWER OF LOVE. I DELETE FEAR AND CHOOSE LOVE, I DELETE FEAR AND CHOOSE LOVE”. Repeat this as often as you need too. I hope you find this helpful. Love has never let me down. The next time fear presents itself in your life, what will you choose?
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Author, Inspirational Speaker, Spiritual Coach, Retreat Leader & Radio Talk Show Host
Simply A Woman of Faith
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