Notes on the Journey

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Stepping Back and Realigning

I don't want to do much of anything.  I don't have a lot of energy, and I'm not feeling inclined toward anything.  So, I'm not doing anything.

I've spent a lot of energy over the last few weeks looking for work.  But, nothing has opened up yet, and the whole process seems to be draining me.  I've lost all desire to not only go to work but to look for work.  Time to back off and take a break.

When things are in alignment for me, they usually happen pretty quickly.  And, when I decided to look for work in San Diego, the idea had energy.  But, all that energy has now dissipated.  And, all the doors have so far been closed.  That means a bit of a reboot is in order.  So, Life might be saying "no" to what I've been looking for; or, it might be saying "not now."  I'm not sure.  But, by taking a pause, I'm giving myself some time to see if things become more clear, or if inspiration comes in regard to something else.  Whatever comes next, without any clarity, I'm just spinning my wheels.

The new field isn't about pushing things or willing things to happen or spinning our wheels.  The new field is about alignment with what is of essence.  So, I need to realign and see what is of essence now.  Taking a step back and doing whatever brings me joy will be much more effective than pushing forward to look for work when everything is saying "no."

So, for now, the work search is off.  And, this week is about having fun.  And, that's something I have energy for.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Freedom, Control and Relationships





I've got a lavender cheesecake in the oven.  Yes, a lavender cheesecake.  I got the recipe at:
http://www.gimmesomeoven.com/lavender-cheesecake
...in case you'd like to make your own lavender cheesecake.

I've got visitors coming on Sunday and Monday and I wanted to make something special.  I'm cooking other things as well, but...lavender cheesecake.  I've never heard of such a thing.  I've also never made a cheesecake, so I've got my fingers crossed that it turns out.  I don't know if mine will look as gorgeous as the one in the photo, but no matter what it looks like, it should taste amazing.

I'm finally settled enough in my new apartment that I'm cooking.  Cooking is a very nurturing and grounding thing to do.  It's such a zen activity, all the chopping and stirring and measuring and combining.  I find it settles me and connects me into a deeper part of myself.  It takes patience, and it's so rewarding.  You get something that's filled with love and so nourishing for your efforts.  I haven't really cooked since my early twenties until I retired from script supervising last year.  And, I'm so enjoying cooking again.

I'm loving my new apartment.  It's got a kind of tree house feel to it.  I'm up high, so I look out over the roofs below me and there are lots of trees.  The only connection I have to another unit is the one below me, so it feels very private as well.  I can see four tall palm trees out my office window, which is so Southern California.  I grew up in San Diego and I didn't realize, until recently, how engrained this place is within me.  Even though it's been about 35 years since I lived here, there are places here that are part of me and always will be.  There are images and sounds and aromas that are part of this place that trigger deep memories from long ago.

Some of what's come up since I've moved here is joyful and happy, but some of what's come up is painful and sad.  The joyful, happy memories nurture me and help me to realize that I can create joyful, happy experiences now.  The painful, sad memories are grist for the spiritual mill.  I look at why they are so painful and sad, and learn from them as I can now, but couldn't when they were happening.  I recapture parts of myself.  I forgive myself and generate compassion for the part of me that was wounded.  I nurture myself back into wholeness as I integrate the lessons that I've only been able to learn now...better late than never.  But, the damage that was done, and the length of the effect it had, is staggering.  Coming to terms with the past, and integrating the lessons inherent in it, is an ongoing process.

I feel the veil of the past lifting, though.  I have moments of deep joy.  Not an exuberant, external joy, but a deep, quiet joy that surprises me.  This joy is peaceful and fulfilling.  It's not attached to anything, it arises from within for no particular reason.

Most of what's come up for me is in regard to relationships.  I'm realizing that I've had an overlay of control connected to a need to be free that was misinterpreted and that played itself out in my relationships.  I projected a lack of freedom onto my relationships, when in reality I am now and have always been free.  I made a decision that the only way I could be in relationship and be free was to be in control, and so I chose partners with whom I could maintain control.  But, this made those relationships very unsatisfying and unsustainable.  Because I now realize that my freedom is a constant, and that no one and no relationship can take it from me, I look forward to creating new mutually loving relationships as who I am now.

This healing would not have taken place had I not decided to move back to San Diego.  It took coming back here to trigger the old wounds so they could be healed and transformed.  I didn't know this until I'd made the decision to move.  But, such is the way Life works.  The inspiration to do something is always for a reason, but we often don't know the reason until we commit to the doing.  The commitment to the doing comes from faith, faith in Life and faith in oneself.  The value it holds starts to reveal itself in the living of the choice.

It's time to check my lavender cheesecake and see how it's transformed itself from what it was when it went into the oven to what it is now.  And, such it is with each of us.  We put ourselves into the fire of transformation by coming into awareness of those things that limit us, taking responsibility for them, forgiving them, and loving ourselves forward and applying what we've learned.  Life gives us unlimited chances to expand and grow.  And, as my lavender cheesecake will come out of the oven in a whole and delicious state, we come out of the fire of transformation able to live a more whole and delicious life.  My life is very yummy right now and I'm beyond grateful for the awareness that allows me to appreciate it.  I'm so grateful, always grateful. 

Thursday, July 4, 2013

A New Era

It's the 4th of July.  It's 9:00pm, and a huge fireworks display just started going off with a vengeance.  I've chosen to stay in my hotel room with my kitties because the fireworks explosions just across the street from where we are, accompanied by cheering crowds of people and police sirens, is not what they consider to be a good time.  The building is also shaking in response to the explosions, so without me here with them, they'd think all kinds of dire things were happening.

It's not my choice to be staying in a hotel across the street from where the fireworks are happening.  But, it's the only hotel close to my new apartment that would take me and my three kitties.  Finding a pet friendly hotel that will let me leave the kitties in the room unattended and not caged was a bit difficult.  We arrived this morning from Albuquerque after driving all night.  And, we don't get to move in to our new apartment until Saturday.  So, this noisy little cubby of a room is our temporary living space.

The trip from Albuquerque was thirteen hours, driven at night to avoid the heat that's been high across the Southwest.  When you drive at night, it's just you and the road.  There's no scenery to enjoy or distract you from the monotony of endless hours of driving.  There is less traffic to deal with, there are less trucks to pass, but there are more blinding headlights--in front and behind.  And, there's the body's desire for sleep because, normally, you'd be comfortably in bed dreaming as the night passed.  But, my desire to get to California was strong, and my desire to keep the kitties cooler and more comfortable was my main objective.  I drive very fast, and even with that, the hours of the drive dragged on endlessly.  But, as the morning dawned, we managed to pull in to our hotel in Ocean Beach at around 6:30am.  Another plus to the hotel is that they agreed to let me check in at this hour without an extra charge.

When we left Albuquerque, the kitties were in their carriers perched above piled-up luggage so that they could see out the front window of the car.  They were not happy about being trapped in their carriers and the prospect of time on the road, so they yelled at me incessantly.  About 15 minutes into the drive, my older female had an unfortunate attack of nervous diarrhea in her carrier.  At this point, the kitties escalated their yelling to all out screaming.  We were no where near a gas station, and all I could hope was that one would appear soon.  About 15 minutes later, thank goodness, I pulled off at a gas station attached to one of the numerous New Mexico casinos.

I took my cat into the travel services building looking for the bathroom.  I was horrified to find it and realize it was not an enclosed space at all.  It was one of those bathrooms that you walk around a wall extension into without a door.  And, all the stalls opened into the room.  I stopped in my tracks and tried to think how I'd be able to remove my upset cat from her carrier and clean her and it without losing her into the depths of the huge travel services building.  I finally proceeded into the handicapped stall, put her carrier on the floor, opened it, and lifted her out.  She tried to escape, but I managed to capture her with my lightening reflexes.  Adrenaline does amazing things to the body.

She was covered in feces as was the carrier.  I plunged ahead.  She's my child.  What's a little shit?  She allowed me to wipe her off as best I could.  She then, thank God, decided to allow me to hold her with one hand while I wiped out the carrier with my other hand.  I removed her soft carrier pad because it was not salvageable.  I'd brought a plastic bag in with me into which the soiled pad went and then into the trash can.  Once the carrier was cleaned as well as I could clean it under the circumstances, she went back in...willingly.  At this point, I realized I had shit on my t-shirt and my pants.  Deep sigh.  I did my best to clean it off so I didn't reek the whole rest of the way to San Diego.  With both of us a little worse for wear, we then trudged out of the bathroom and headed for the car.

I put my dear, semi-traumatized cat back in the car.  The other two kitties were happy to see her and to realize that things had been cleaned up.  We headed out again.  Take 2.  My cats continued to yell at me for most of the thirteen hours of the drive.  There were times when they were especially loud, other times when they whimpered softly, and other times when they meowed in indignant, staccato bursts.  It was horrifying.  And, because of the previous diarrhea event, I prayed that the continuous meows would not result in further messy incidents.  My prayers were answered.  Thank you, thank you, thank you.

I am now in the part of San Diego where I lived in my late teens and early twenties.  It was in this place that I first lived when I moved out of my parent's house and was on my own.  It was in this place that I first fell in love.  The joyous part of my youth was spent here, and now I return.  I've been gone for almost 40 years.  A very long time.  Lots of water under the bridge.  And yet, the joy of my youth remains and colors my perceptions of this place.  I am ecstatic to be at the beach again.  I am ecstatic to be near the ocean...specifically, to be near this beach, and this part of the ocean.  It is a beautiful place and I feel nurtured by it visually and energetically.

We can't repeat the past.  Things happen and go by and new things arise in their place.  My happy youth and the love of that time are long gone.  I am not that girl anymore.  The woman I am now is very different from that carefree girl.  And yet, it makes me feel hopeful to be here.  I've been in a bit of limbo since I retired from script supervising a year ago.  But, I now feel another chapter starting.  I'm not yet clear how things will go or what shape they will take, but I feel hopeful about things in a way that I haven't for a very long time.  The other benefit of being here is that I get to be near my sister.  We weren't that close for many years, each of us living our lives and going our separate ways.  But, in the last year, we've become closer and we've talked to each other more frequently, and I'm so happy to now be living close to her.

So, I start my life again, as I've done many times in the past, but with more hope this time.  And, this time, I'm looking forward to settling and creating a life that nurtures and sustains me with its continuity.  I'm tired of constant traveling, and of moving over and over.  I'm wanting some stability at this point.

I soak in the essence of this place and allow all the memories to flow through me.  I enjoy them and thank them and focus on the now and what I want to create in this moment.  I embark on this new chapter quieter than in my youth, with a heart that's more open, with more subdued expectations, and with a greater ability to accept and enjoy the now.  And, once again, and always, I am eternally grateful.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Heart Opening

I've been so emotional lately.  I've attributed it to the fact that I'm moving and that so much is being triggered within me.  And, that is true, but it's not the whole reason.

It occurred to me today that my heart is opening in new and unfamiliar ways.  Because I'm not used to this new level of vulnerability and compassion, I experience it as emotion.  I go through levels of this opening where I'm emotional and raw, and then I integrate that level and things calm down, and then a new opening occurs and the emotional rawness returns.  I finally realized that it's waves of energy coming in and triggering heart openings.  I've been integrating and welcoming home parts of myself that got broken off at various points of my life, leaving because the way things were didn't allow them to stay and blossom.  And so, my heart has been required to open in order to love them home and expand so that the wholeness of me can be present and have expression.  Or, maybe it's because my heart is opening that those parts of me are able to come home.  I think it's a combination of both.

I'm more sensitive in general.  Things touch me deeply, more deeply than before.  I watched a video this morning that was included in the most recent newsletter I'd received from Krista Tippet and her "On Being" series.  It was about a young (33) artist, Martha Depp, who had ovarian cancer and who was dying.  Her brother made the video as a tribute to her and her art.  She was a very talented painter.  She is the one speaking in the video.  She has a soft voice and a frail form, but what was also obvious was that she was strong and courageous and inspiring.  She accepted her state and welcomed the release it would bring.  And, she painted.  She wanted to leave all her work complete.  And, she accomplished that.  I was so touched by her beauty and her courage and her deep acceptance that I wept.  Not out of sadness, but because I felt expanded by her.  I felt increased by just watching a six-minute video of her.  Here is the link if you would like to experience this video:  http://www.onbeing.org/blog/completely-free-be-vulnerable-martha-depp-art-and-cancer/2647

I'm more sensitive in my body and feel physical things, as well as energetic things, more than before.  I seem to hear and see on deeper levels.  And, it feels raw because this level of vulnerability, this state of less protection and more wholeness, is new and must be adjusted to.  But, as I integrate these changes, I become more settled and calm within myself.  I think we're all going through these changes.  I'm not the only one who's experiencing this.

There is so much going on for each and every one of us.  We're going through deep changes internally, and big changes externally.  People are moving, changing jobs, moving on from long-term relationships, beginning new and maybe unlikely relationships, and changing outworn perceptions in general.  Things are expanding for all of us very quickly on a global scale.  It's because all of us are opening our hearts more and more, and the result of that is change.  As our hearts open, we become more deeply aware of who we really are, and we realize that we've been living lives of adaptation, rather then lives of passion directed by our inner knowing.  Passion can be wild or it can be quiet and intense.  It is the deep flow of Life through each of us and our awareness of it and what it means.  It's when we act from that inner knowing.  Passion is true integrity.

It's not necessarily an easy transition from a life of adaptation to a life of passion, but it is a necessary one if we are ever to feel fully engaged with Life.  It's painful to realize that we might have lived the life that was thrust upon us by family or society or circumstance, and that it was not, has not been, the life we would have chosen for ourselves if we'd felt we'd had a choice.  But, we can always claim that life once the awareness of our adaptation becomes conscious.  We can always let go and start over.  We can always listen and act from our deepest place of connection to Life.  And, as we make this fundamental change, we inspire others to do so as well.  And, we contribute to a groundswell of passion that is birthing itself into the global collective.

I live a simple life at this point.  It's what I want after what seems like a long period of living a life of much complication and adaptation.  I've eliminated a lot from my life and gotten to know myself again, or maybe I should say, discovered my deeper Self in a way that I've not done up to this point.  And, the simplicity of my life is allowing me to be fully present with all the changes that I'm going through, that we're all going through together.  I'm so grateful for this time of real presence.  It changes things and has helped me to reorient my priorities and to see what's really important.  I used to be much more externally focused, even though I had an active internal life.  But now, I am more internally focused, and the interesting result of that is that I'm even more present in the external.  Who knew?

We're all on a journey of deep transformation and change.  It has been going on for a long time, and will continue for a long time to come.  We'll have times of respite in order to integrate and enjoy what we're going through, but we will keep plunging ahead and expanding and opening because we are alive, and Life is eternal and unending.  Physical bodies will come and go, where we choose to embody will change, but Life will continue unabated, filled with mystery and growth and the pure joy of experience.  We are Love embodied, and we're only just beginning to understand what that really means.

Right now, I'm grateful to be experiencing these waves of Love that wash through me and leave me changed forever.  I'm grateful for simple things and a simple life that allows me to fully experience it.  I'm grateful for this Life in this body, here and now, and for Life in general, in all the ways it manifests.  I'm grateful for the level of acceptance I've reached and the lack of expectation I currently have.  I am, once again, on my knees in gratitude. 

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Emotionally Raw, But Happy

I can hear thunder, and the wind has picked up.  From my vantage point, I can see that it's raining in the valley below me.  The first monsoon?  Will they come early this year, after practically not even showing up for the last couple of years?

I had all my moving boxes stacked on the balcony, but if it rains, they'd all get soaked.  So now, they're all stacked in my living room, which isn't so much a living room anymore as a storage room.  I've packed quite a bit so far and I've got tall stacks of packed boxes sitting all over my space.  I don't move until the end of the month, but I want to get as much packed as possible as soon as possible so there is, hopefully, no crisis at the end.  I'd like everything to go as smoothly as possible in terms of being ready for the moving truck when it arrives.  It costs a small fortune to move across the country, and time is money.

I work through the packing at a slow pace.  Not everything will go, and so thought must be put into what is being packed.  Decisions must be made as to what goes and what gets given away.  Some days I'm quicker and some days I'm slower.  It all depends on what's being packed and which room draws me.  Lots of memories are being triggered, not only by what I go through as I pack, but also because I'm moving back to my home town, and specifically back to the part of town I lived in during my late teens and twenties before I left for what I then thought were greener pastures.

My cats follow me around and constantly check in, needing assurance as their world is thrown into chaos.  I sometimes spend hours just sitting and remembering and processing, what went before and what's happening now.  This is why I'm not waiting to pack.  This is why I'm doing it now.  If I have days after everything is packed before the truck gets here, that's fine.  But, I don't want to be rushing around at the end, still trying to throw things in boxes so they can be loaded onto the truck.

I've taken down all the art that has graced my walls and either packed what could be packed, or stacked it in the hallway.  I spent more time looking at it when I took it down than I have as I have lived with it.  I've taken it for granted in the way we do with things we see everyday.  So, packing it, or getting it ready to pack, has given me a chance to appreciate it and choose to continue to live with it.  As I pack, I get to re-choose what I keep.  And, over the last two moves, I've downsized a lot, so what stays is important.  And, I realize how little I really need.

I've been wandering like a gypsy for the last 40 years, but my feeling in moving back to San Diego is that my wandering days might be through.  That is not to say that I might not do some traveling, but I do feel that finally it will be possible to put down some roots.  There's a peace to moving back, an internal settling, an ahhhh.  Being near the ocean in San Diego makes me happy.  And, even though I've mostly enjoyed the places where I've lived in the last 40 years, being happy isn't something I would have said about myself.  But, I can feel happiness bubbling up from deep inside at the prospect of going home.

I love Albuquerque.  And, I'm grateful for how she's held me and nurtured me while I've been here.  I'm grateful for the wonderful friends I've made here.  And, I will always hold this place of immense beauty close to my heart.  I talk to the Deva of the city as I drive around her.   I thank her for all she's given me.  And, I say goodbye.  This goodbye is not an easy one.  I've left so many people and places over the years, and I don't remember ever having this much emotion in a leave-taking.  This city has been very good to me.

I've been emotionally raw and many tears have been falling.  Much has come up for review on its way out, and my being has struggled to process everything and keep up with all the movement.  But, I know that everything that's showing itself to me as it goes, must go in order to make room for what is to come.  So, I'm grateful for the movement, but I go in and out of the overwhelm that it can cause.

I'm happy with what is before me, and I honor everything that has gone before.  Honor, and sometimes mourn, for there are things I realize as they come up, that I have not mourned, and the mourning must be done, or we are not complete with what has come before.  I am receiving gifts of awareness from that mourning, and growing in ways I wish I could have grown when I was younger.  But, at least the lessons and gifts are settling upon me now; and, better late than never.

So, this period of packing and moving is exciting and bittersweet.  And, it gives me a chance to feel gratitude for many things that have gone before, as well as for all of what is here now.  This gift of reflection is a wonderful thing, part of the letting go that must happen as I move forward.  And, it helps me to move forward with a full heart, ready for what Life has in store for me now.  I'm excited for the next chapter, and I'm embracing the ever-expanding happiness that's growing within me.  And, I am grateful.  Ever grateful.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Living DNA

DNA is not fixed.  It's changeable, and it changes to reflect our current state of consciousness.  As we grow and develop, it changes to reflect that.  It also upgrades through body communication with beloveds and friends.

As we communicate with those close to us, through the proximity of our physical bodies, we are also communicating cellularly and our DNA is exchanging information.  The more varied our DNA, the better.  It makes us stronger, and it opens up avenues for growth and change, that make growth and change more possible.

Anna, Saint Anne as she is known in the Catholic church, the mother of Mary and the grandmother of Yeshua (Jesus), was a highly developed spiritual adept.  She studied matters of the Spirit with masters in Palestine, Egypt, India, England, and throughout the Mediterranean area.  She was also a physical immortal, having mastered the practices of cellular regeneration.  She lived for 400 years before she was fully prepared and ready to birth Mary.  The level of light that Mary carried had to be brought forth through one who could match the vibration, or the pregnancy wouldn't have succeeded.  All of Anna's preparation and development affected and grew her DNA and raised her vibratory level.

Mary had Yeshua when she was 16 years old.  It was beneficial to the process of bringing him through to have him as young as possible while still ensuring the safety of them both.  She was protected within a community of Essenes who knew who she was and what she had been born to do.  She followed a course of spiritual study, developing herself for the task of birthing Yeshua.  Though she had a very high vibration herself, by birthing Yeshua while she was as young as possible, she was in a more pure state with fewer things to transmute within herself and was able to keep her vibration high enough to sync with Yeshua's.  To raise the level of the DNA that would be passed on to Yeshua even higher, Mary's DNA was combined with a combination of off-planet DNA, and although human, Yeshua brought with him a new hybridization of DNA to the planet.

Yeshua had a number of children, through whom his more expanded and informed DNA was passed on to the generations that followed.  And, when Yeshua's public mission was complete and he retreated to India with his wives and some of his children, the rest of the family dispersed themselves over far reaches of geography in order to spread their DNA throughout the world as best they could.  They were also in hiding and running for their lives from those who felt so threatened by their awareness and the light they carried that they wanted to kill them.

At this point in time, either through direct genetic transmission, or through physical proximity and energetic tramsmission, we all carry the DNA that Yeshua brought in to the planet.  We've all received the upgrade.  And, our DNA is continuing to upgrade and transform as our planet upgrades and transforms.  The DNA that was implanted in the time of Yeshua has done its job and brought us to the point where we can be receptive to the upgrades we're in the process of receiving now.

We travel much more now than peoples of the past.  And, as we travel, we are in the process of upgrading and expanding our DNA, which makes it more possible to receive and integrate the light infusions we're all currently being given.  As each one of us heals, transmutes the past, and raises our consciousness, we lift each other up.  None of us do this work alone.  Since the Life that lives us is the same, and we are all part and parcel of the same energetic field, we are inextricably linked.

So, know that you have Christed DNA in your chain.  It's there, affecting and transforming each and every one us every second.  It's been in the chain of planetary DNA for two millennia, working to prepare and open us for the planetary upgrade and vibrational change we're all experiencing right now.  We came in knowing what we were going to be participating in and wanting to be here.  We've prepared for lifetimes on more planets than this one to be ready for this opportunity to grow in consciousness and uplift our vibration in sync with our planet as we move into a new dimension.  And, we are ready.  No matter what it looks like in the world of form, we got this.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Moving to San Diego

It's raining in Albuquerque.  And, as something let go in the weather to allow the rain to fall, something seemed to let go in me today.  I slowed down.  I let go...a little.

I'm moving to San Diego.  And, as much as my soul knows that that's my next step, my human is feeling some overwhelm and anxiety.  If I could just teleport myself, my cats, and my stuff there, it would be okay; but, since that's not possible, the 3D physical stuff has got me going a little crazy.  I also find the explaining of my actions to the people around me to be a bit stressful.  If it was a mental decision with a string of logical steps and conclusions, it would be easier; but, it's a decision that comes from the depth of my being with more emotion than logic.  And, since I moved to the place where I'm living only six months ago, the decision to move again is even more challenging to explain.

I've been having what I finally realized were panic attacks.  My heart would race for no reason, I'd get short of breath with no cause.  My digestion has been upset.  For a while now, these symptoms have been passing me without registering.  I would feel them, but then ignore them.  But, today, because I slowed down and started to be with what was happening, I realized that my anxiety is taking physical expression.

I've moved more than the normal person.  My family moved every two years for my whole childhood until we finally settled into a house that my parents bought when I started high school.  I lived in that house for four years and then moved out to be on my own.  I moved every few years, and sometimes every year, until I found the last apartment I had in Santa Monica.  I lived there for eight years, which is the longest I've lived anywhere in my life.  I've been in Albuquerque for almost five years and I've lived in four different places in that time.  And, now, I'm moving everything back across the country to be in San Diego.  Moving from one side of town to the other is a lot, but moving from one state to another is really daunting.

I downsized by half when I moved into the apartment where I am now.  And, I'll downsize again as I get ready to pack for the move to California.  I enjoy getting rid of things and having less.  It always feels good to let stuff go.  But, it takes time to go through everything and make all the decisions about what stays and what goes.  And, it has an emotional component to it.  A lot of emotions get triggered as one makes the decisions about what one needs, or wants, and what one needs to let go of.  Moving doesn't just stir up things in a physical sense, it stirs up things on every level.  So, apart from dealing with all of what the physical demands, there's a lot of internal stuff moving around and processing through as well.

Albuquerque has been a joy for the most part.  I've loved this city and its people.  There is an unsurpassing beauty here that has surrounded and nurtured me.  And, I will miss the Sandia Mountains, which I love.  But, my being needs the ocean.  I ache and yearn for the water.  I've never lived away from the water until I moved here.  And, it didn't really bother me for the first four years because I was still traveling a lot and getting periods of time at the water.  Things changed when I retired and the traveling stopped.  I've been in Albuquerque for the last year with no time away, and my need for the ocean has made itself known loud and clear.  I dream about the ocean.  I dream of seagulls, and kelp drying in the sun on the beach.  I smell the salty moisture of the water and feel the ting of it in the air.  During the last animal communication session I had with my cats, they were showing images of the ocean to the animal communicator.  She couldn't understand why they were showing her the ocean when we live in Albuquerque, but it's because they were picking it up from me.

Family is also calling.  Over the last year, I've become much closer to my sister.  We've been talking more over the phone and I've been missing her.  So, by moving to San Diego, I get the ocean and I get family.  Since I grew up in San Diego, it's like going home.  But, I've now lived away from it for longer than I lived in it, so I know that it will be a very different place.  And, I'm a different person.  When I left in my 20's, I was looking for and wanting so many things.  I had things to find out about myself and things to prove.  But, as I come back now, I know myself and I have nothing to prove.  I've done what I wanted to do and I've traveled the world.  I'm a softer, quieter person who's been pretty much stripped to the bone.

I'm driving to San Diego first to find a place to live and then coming back to pack and move.  I'm not looking forward to the drive, but it is what it is.  I'm looking for places to live in the same, small beach community I lived in before I moved away from San Diego.  And, I'll look for work as a waitress once I get there, which is what I did years and years ago.  So, it's a real full-circle moment.  I could arrange things so I didn't have to work, but I'm actually looking forward to working.  I've had a year of total freedom and lack of structure, so I feel okay now about finding work.  And, I like the idea of waitressing.  I always enjoyed it when I did it before and I expect to enjoy it now.

I'm excited and melancholy all at the same time.  I'm holding space for what is to come, and I'm honoring what is done and what I'm parting with.  It's a new chapter, and I have no idea what it will hold, but I'm excited by the possibilities that it offers.  I didn't know this was what I'd be doing until a couple of weeks ago.  I'd felt something coming, but it hadn't taken shape yet.  Then, rather suddenly, it became clear, and I knew where I was to go and what I had to do.  All there is left is to do it.  So, after a year of rest, I'm on my way.  Wish me luck!

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Transformation

I don't like the idea that the ego is something we don't need or should kill.  As long as we're embodied we need an ego, or sense of self.  But, what we can do is to transform or re-purpose the ego, or sense of self, to be cooperative with and supportive to our larger sense of Self, or soul, instead of thinking that it is in charge and running the show.

I feel that we're all in a process of transforming our old 3D egos into the more supportive 5D versions, whether we realize it or not.  But, in this transformational process, there's some confusion and a sense of being unmoored and out of control...which is a good thing.  We feel out of control because we really are not in control in the same way we used to be in 3D.  Being in control and using our will to make things happen is the old paradigm.  The new paradigm is about being in the present moment and staying aware of our experience as it's happening and then responding appropriately.  In order to do that, we must release our need to control our experience or use our will in order to make things happen.

Even my cat is going through this.  I use an animal communicator to talk with my cats.  I understand a lot of what they tell me, but often need help in more specific communication.  During our last animal communication session, which we had because Sophie, the type-A self-appointed Queen of the roost, was acting out by purposely not using her litter box and, instead, leaving me little gifts nearby.  She said she was doing this because she's feeling out of control.  She's used to bullying and controlling my other female, Negri.  But lately, Negri has been getting more friendly with my male, Buddy, in an effort to find peace.  Sophie is set upon maintaining a certain amount of tension in regard to her inability to accept Buddy, and Negri is tiring of that tension.  And, because Negri is no longer allowing Sophie to control her in regard to her attitude toward Buddy, Sophie is more on her own and feeling like the outsider.  The choice to accept Buddy into our family and give up control is one Sophie has not yet been able to make.  And, she might never be able to make that choice.  But, she's suffering for it.

This is the same choice we're all being asked to make.  To accept things as they are, see the truth of them and respond accordingly.  This requires the release of any control or expectation of any particular outcome in regard to whatever it is we happen to be experiencing.  Since this is a big change for most of us from how we've been used to doing things, there's some resistance.  I've found that allowing the resistance to just be there and to have its space gives it a chance to move on through.  I watch it to see what the resistance is about, and I have compassion for the part of me that's struggling, and I've come to realize that all it needs is to be seen.  By seeing and acknowledging the resistance or fear that's making itself known, I honor that aspect of myself that needs reassurance and comfort in order to move forward.

The other thing my cat, Sophie, said that she needed and didn't feel she was getting was to be seen.  To be really seen.  Isn't that what we all want?  We relax when we feel really seen and really heard, and we struggle when we feel we haven't been seen or heard...in every aspect of ourselves.  When fear and resistance come up, instead of pushing them away, or thinking we should be feeling something else that we consider to be more acceptable, if we really see and hear that aspect of ourselves and give it comfort and reassurance, it will calm down and the fear and resistance will move through.  We might have to comfort and reassure that aspect of ourselves repeatedly, but sooner or later, the fear and resistance will lose their grip.  It's a back and forth process, but it ultimately brings us into deeper relationship with ourselves and, over time, renders the fear and doubt and resistance powerless to control us any longer.

The other thing I'm noticing is that I have no ambition or need to accomplish anything in the way I used to.  Previously, I was always striving toward some goal, trying to prove something or get somewhere.  But now, all of that seems to have gone away.  I'm not quite sure who I am without it and so I get confused about what I'm doing, but I think that's a transitional feeling.  Once my old sense of self gets further along in this transformation, I'll be able to relax into a life free of striving and efforting.  But, right now, I'm still in the back and forth of it.  I'm still in the in between of what was and what is.

I think the best we can do for ourselves, and those with whom we come into contact, is to be as compassionate and kind as possible.  Everyone is under a lot of stress as we go through this transition, both from the outside and from the inside, and the more patient and accepting we can be with ourselves and others, the more graceful this transition will be.  I think it's giving us a chance to really open up to ourselves and be more loving.  And, the more we're able to accept and love ourselves, the more we'll be able to do that for everyone else.

Deep transitions and transformations are not easy, but we're better for them.  They always require a change in perspective and behavior, which we usually resist, but once we let go we wonder why we didn't do it sooner.  There's a release and a relaxation to deep change that is expansive and liberating.  It's difficult to remember that sometimes when we're in the throes of it, which is when we could really benefit by being kind to ourselves.  But, once we stop struggling against the inevitable and let go into it, our being opens up again and we start to move forward.

So, let's love ourselves through this.  Let's be kind and compassionate with ourselves.  Let's really see ourselves, and accept and allow all aspects of ourselves to be included into the whole, even the ones that are frightened and resistant.  It's an opportunity to love ourselves free from everything that has held us captive or held us back or limited us in anyway.  If we can remember that, we can be grateful for this opportunity for change and transformation.  If we can remember that, we can embrace our experience and surrender into it.  If we can remember that, we can move forward by leaps and bounds. 

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

It's Enough

I've been feeling exhausted for no reason lately.  I've been having trouble sleeping at night and then taking long naps in the day.  The only reason I can indulge these weird sleep patterns is that I don't have to go to work.  I've been accomplishing very little, as you might imagine.

Part of this is due to a lot of personal internal processing I've been doing lately, and part of this is due to the immense amount of light and energy coming into the planet.  We're all being required to process and integrate this light and energy at such a rate that we're getting a bit overwhelmed.  And, I don't see it letting up any time soon.  We're in the midst of a planetary upgrade and transitioning into a new dimension of being.  This is no small feat.  And, we're physically feeling the stress of it.

I used to be such a good sleeper.  I never had trouble going to sleep at night.  My head would hit the pillow and I'd be out.  I could pretty much sleep anywhere at anytime.  And, once asleep, I was a very sound sleeper.  I considered sleeping to be one of my talents.  Part of this, as I look back, was most likely due to the fact that my work left me constantly exhausted and sleep deprived.  When you run on four to five hours of sleep for years of time, your body is desperate for it.  Any time I'd stop, or let down, for even a few minutes, my body would go for sleep.  But now, I'm getting plenty of sleep.

Sometimes I wonder if I'm so exhausted because the Epstein Barr is kicking in, or the Hashimoto's Thyroiditis and subsequent Hypothyroidism.  But then, I talk to other people who are also feeling exhausted for no particular reason, and I realize it's something larger.  I don't like to blame whatever is going on with me to the planetary upgrade and infusion of light that's coming in, but it really does have a huge impact on all of us.  I'm tired of hearing about "ascension symptoms."  But, some of them are real.  And, like it or not, believe in it or not, this planetary transition is definitely affecting all of us.

We've been building up to this planetary transition for a long time.  The energy has been building slowly.  But, we've now come to a point in this buildup where the energy has gained momemtum and is speeding up.  We're literally being pushed through into a new reality and level of being.  And, it's no small accomplishment to go through this whole process while in the body.  It's never been done before on any other world.  And, it's taking a toll.  Some of us will be able to pull it off, and some of us won't.  Upgrading our vibrational level, changing dimensions, and transforming our physical beings from a carbon-based system into a crystalline-based system while in the body is pretty miraculous.  No wonder we're all exhausted.

There's not much we can do about it except to ride it out.  But, what we can do is to be kind to ourselves.  We can stop pushing ourselves as much as we might have in the past.  We can lighten our schedules and demand less of ourselves, knowing that this huge shift we're participating in is taking the lion's share of our energy.  If we keep pushing ourselves the way we were able to in 3D, we'll burn ourselves out.  So, it's a choice.  We can acknowledge what's going on and give ourselves a break, or we can just keep pushing and see what happens.  How much can we take?  Like an experiment.

I'm very grateful that I chose to stop working at the end of last year so that I can ride the energy on a daily basis.  Because I'm not being pulled by the external in the way I was when I was working, I've become much more internal in focus, and much more attuned to the energy.  Some days I have a lot of energy.  I get up early and get lots done.  But, other days I can barely get out of bed, get very little done--feeding the cats is a big accomplishment--and take long naps.  I don't make many long-term plans, because I'm never sure how I'll feel on any given day.  I no longer will myself to do things I don't want to do, I just don't have the energy for it.

Since I stopped working, I've spent long periods of time feeling guilty about what I'm not doing.  I've tried to berate myself into doing various things.  But, I don't have much energy for that anymore either.  The whole idea of doing is highly overrated anyway.  And, I am doing things.  Not to the level I once did while I was working, but doing none the less.  And, this business of staying embodied while transitioning into a new dimension requires doing a lot.  It's just that most of the doing in regard to dimensional change is internal in nature.  So, it looks like we're not doing anything but, in actuality, we're doing more than we consciously understand.

I keep reaching new levels of acceptance of myself and who I am and what my life is.  And, I'm now much more accepting of what each day brings, or doesn't bring.  If I'm tired, I rest.  If I've got energy, I use it.  I don't wake up expecting either.  I've stopped wondering what I'm going to do, and now accept that I'm doing enough.  I've stopped judging myself on yet another level.  One more pressure valve released.  One less expectation to meet.  One more level of relaxation reached.

I have no idea how things will happen as the days go by, but I'm getting more comfortable with not knowing.  Allowing Life to show up as it does takes less energy than having any expectation of how it should show up.  And, the less energy I expend on judgments and expectations, the more energy I have to really be with whatever is happening.  And, considering what we're experiencing here on Earth, and the fact that we're the first humans to be experiencing it, I really want to be with it.  I think that's what it's about for some of us.  To really be with the change.  And, in terms of doing something, that's a lot.

And so, I enjoy my days.  I enjoy how Life shows up on a daily basis.  I cook and I clean and I take care of my cats, and I help to usher in the biggest change most of us will ever experience.  And, it's enough. 

Friday, April 19, 2013

Regaining Sovereignty

As I was going to sleep last night, the voices in my head that are not real started talking.  This pre-sleep time of quiet seems to be fertile ground for them...all the negatives and the thoughts based in fear.  At this juncture in my life, there are many negatives and fear-based thoughts that loop through my consciousness vying for attention.  "You're so lazy."  "You're such a loser."  "You're a failure."  Yada, yada, yada and on and on.  But, there is also the overlighting aspect of me that knows these thoughts are not true when they move through, the aspect of me that wants to acknowledge, and give voice to, the parts of me that are screaming.  It's not possible to stop these negative thoughts with will, or to drown them out with affirmations.  They need to be acknowledged and given their space.  Not given power, but given space.

The aspects of us that scream in the negative are doing so because they need attention, they need to be heard.  There's a reason I think of myself as lazy, or that I think of myself as a loser or a failure.  A cause.  And, until the cause is acknowledged and brought to light, it runs me from where it's deeply buried.  Awareness brings freedom.  And, we gain that freedom baby step at a time as we bring more and more aspects of ourselves into our conscious awareness.  Once we can see the pattern, or negative belief, it loses its power over us.  I've known this as a concept for a long time.  But, as time goes by, and I integrate it more and more deeply, I'm now able to give the shadows their due without shutting down the process.

When the shadow voices started to speak last night, instead of trying to stop them or resist them, I just let them speak.  And, at the same time, I held myself and comforted the part of myself that, for a long time, believed those voices to be true.  And, after a while, the voices faded away and I fell asleep holding myself.  Every time we're able to allow the voices to be there without giving them our power, we step forward into more personal sovereignty.  We take ourselves back and baby step into empowerment.  Each time we can stay conscious as the voices start in on us once again, and give them their space without reacting to them or believing them, we've reclaimed another piece of ourselves.  And, as we reclaim these pieces, Life gives us the opportunity to make our sovereignty real through action.

One example of this back and forth between awareness and action that I've had just came into my consciousness this morning.  I recently wrote about my awareness in regard to past abuses and invasions of my body while reading "Confessions of a Spiritual Thrillseeker" by Oriah Mountain Dreamer.  (RE:  Releasing the Wound)  And, this morning, while reading "What We Ache For," another book by Oriah Mountain Dreamer, I realized a moment of empowerment that, at the time, I didn't recognize.

This unrecognized moment of empowerment was in regard to rape and taking back the sovereignty of my body.  I was in an intimate relationship a while ago that gave me many gifts, and as I realize though my awareness of this morning, those gifts are still showing up.  By gifts, I mean the gifts of awareness around my own limitations and misperceptions that the relationship mirrored to me.  At one point, we'd had a difficult day, gotten into an argument that triggered a lot for both of us, and then reconciled and gone to bed.  I wasn't feeling a desire to be intimate with him, but he wanted--needed--to be intimate with me; to reconnect on a physical level after the conflict we'd had.  But, as the foreplay began, he got too rough and I felt like I wasn't real to him anymore, that I was just an object and that he was lost somewhere in his own demons.  It frightened me, because it triggered me back into the helpless horror of past experiences.  But, the difference this time, was that I gathered my strength and pushed him off of me.  I stopped it.  I said "no."  I took back a piece of myself.  And, it only came to me this morning what an act of strength that was.

Our relationship was never the same after that.  We continued on for a while, but my wariness of him didn't go away.  My realization that he could disappear into himself to the extent that I disappeared as well, and that the only thing present at that point were his demons, gave me pause.  And, I was right to be wary.  I was right to step back.  I was right to later stop the relationship all together.  But, as uncomfortable as this experience was, it gave me a chance to step up and regain a part of myself.  Until Life gives us a chance at this type of experience, we don't know what we'll do.  So, awareness into action.  Although, in this case, it was action into belated awareness.

I didn't realize I'd come far enough along in my own development that I'd be able to say "no," to say "stop" in this circumstance.  And, it took me months to actually realize the power of what I'd done.  And, that awareness only came much later after the previous awareness I'd had around the same issue while reading a book.  But, we never know how these things will come or unfold.  From the point I'd said "no," the deeper awareness that needed to surface had been struggling toward the light.  What finally helps that awareness to push through the surface could be anything, but once loosened, push through it will.

And so, baby step by baby step, I reclaim myself, and aspects of myself return and integrate, and I become more and more whole, more and more sovereign.  And, yet again, I find myself on my knees in gratitude, which is always a good place to be.    

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Releasing the Wound

I'm in the process of reading "Confessions of a Spiritual Thrillseeker" by Oriah Mountain Dreamer.  I just read about her experience of being tested in a self-defense class by being attacked by three different men and having to defend herself.  I cried as I read it and I cry again as I write this.

Many women live with an inherent physical fear of men.  Many of us have been attacked and raped in the past, and the scars of those experiences don't go quietly.  Our tendency is to the typical denial of the pain left by these physical invasions.  "I'm fine."  "I just need to forget and move on."  Yada, yada, yada.  This is what we're told by the world, and this is what we try to tell ourselves.  And, this is where the numbness comes in.  As we numb ourselves to the pain we don't know how to deal with, we also numb ourselves to all our other feelings.  It's not possible to compartmentalize and numb pain, without also numbing everything else as well.

At one part of Oriah's story, she talks about how she realizes she'd rather die than fight her attacker.  She wants to go to sleep instead of fight.  Her collapse is so total, her need to escape so complete, that it brings on unconsciousness.  Her teacher yells at her to bring her back into presence and she manages to rouse herself and fight, but the effort is extreme.  When I read this I realize that this retreat, this desire to escape, is operative in me.  Sleep is my escape.  And, I often wish I could die.  I've never tried to commit suicide, but the death wish is there.

The value of Oriah's learning of self-defense and the experience of being tested, brought all of her past experiences of violence, rape, and attack to the surface and allowed it to move through.  At the end of the testing, she was cleansed and renewed and empowered.  She no longer wanted to sleep, and she was no longer afraid to walk forward in the world.  She was no longer afraid of men, and could finally open to them without the overlay of fear and mistrust.  She knew she could defend herself, and this gave her a new sense of freedom.

I've not taken a self-defense class, but I'm thinking I might.  Recently, a man broke into my home while I was there.  Thankfully, I didn't have to physically defend myself, but when I confronted him, I didn't collapse, I got angry and went after him.  That's a good thing to know about myself.  I stayed awake.  I roused myself.  In the past, I have not been so present or so forceful.  I have collapsed.  And, I realize that in the collapse is not only the escape, but the effort at survival.  If I let them have their way, they will take what they want and leave, and hopefully leave me alive.  Yes, this might be a method for survival, but the wounds it leaves are deep.  And, once disempowered at this level, it's not an easy road to recovery.

I have a lot to recover from.  I don't look forward to opening it up and allowing it to move through.  But, I know that's what must be done in order to regain my freedom and to empower myself again.  I must look at the things I've been running from in order to wake up.  I must release those emotions in order to really feel again.  The healing is in the awareness and the release.  I must walk into it and not away from it.  It's time to dance with those demons.

Two different friends recently emailed me a poem by Maya Angelou called "Still I Rise."  I posted a link to a video of Maya herself speaking it on my Facebook page because I love it so much  And, I will include it here in written form.  This is what we do, over and over, we rise.  There are many kinds of slavery...but, the important thing is that we find freedom, and we rise.  This poem speaks to the slave in all of us.

Still I Rise

You may write me down in history
With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may trod me in the very dirt
But still, like dust, I'll rise.

Does my sassiness upset you?
Why are you beset with gloom?
'Cause I walk like I've got oil wells
Pumping in my living room.

Just like moons and like suns,
With the certainty of tides,
Just like hopes springing high,
Still I'll rise.

Did you want to see me broken?
Bowed head and lowered eyes?
Shoulders falling down like teardrops.
Weakened by my soulful cries.

Does my haughtiness offend you?
Don't you take it awful hard
'Cause I laugh like I've got gold mines
Diggin' in my own back yard.

You may shoot me with your words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefulness,
But still, like air, I'll rise.

Does my sexiness upset you?
Does it come as a surprise
That I dance like I've got diamonds
At the meeting of my thighs?

Out of the huts of history's shame
I rise
Up from a past that's rooted in pain
I rise
I'm a black ocean, leaping and wide,
Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.
Leaving behind nights of terror and fear
I rise
Into a daybreak that's wondrously clear
I rise
Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,
I am the dream and the hope of the slave.
I rise
I rise
I rise.


Monday, March 25, 2013

Refocused Yearning

My last post was about yearning, triggered by hearing a talk by an author at a local bookstore.  But, since that post, I've had more thoughts about the whole concept of yearning.

Being in the moment is more challenging than one might imagine.  Life has so many wonderful distractions that take us out of the moment.  I saw a wonderful short video on Facebook this morning, which I've shared on my page, of a 109-year-old holocaust survivor giving the most wonderful, wise advice.  "What's your secret?" she's asked.  And, she replies, "Optimism."  I'm paraphrasing now, but she says there are bad things in life, but you give your attention to the beautiful things.  There is beauty all around us, she says.  Yes.  I've heard this.  I've said this!  I've had moments of the awareness of this.  Why is it so easy to forget?

If one is yearning for anything, one is not in the moment.  Yearning for something means we think we don't have something that is really important to us.  But, that means that we forget that we have everything we need.  That means that we've gone into a consciousness of lack.  And, as long as we're yearning for something, or concentrating on what we don't have, we'll continue to create that lack.  When we're really present and in the moment with whatever is going on, we're not thinking about anything.  We might be processing incoming information through our mind, but we're with the situation, not thinking about the situation.  Presence requires awareness, not thought.

When we're really present, the past holds no sway over us.  When we're really present, we're not thinking about some concept we have about the future.  When we're really present, we're not yearning for something we think we need but don't have.  When we're really present, we're simply with whatever is revealing itself.  The thing that might be revealing itself could be love, beauty, connection, pleasure, anger, hunger, thirst, aggression, fierceness, tenderness...the list is endless.  But, if we're present, we're able to take in and receive whatever is being revealed.  We're able to respond instead of react.  We're not thinking, we're processing.  We're being aware.

I think part of being human is to yearn for things, dream for things, imagine things the way they could be, the way we want them to be.  It's not a bad thing to give our imaginations full leeway.  It's through our imaginations that creativity makes it's way into the world.  But, there's a balance to be struck between imagination and presence.  Yearning should not be focused on the thing we don't think we have, but on the feeling sense of what it would be like to have it.  In that way, our feeling sense of it is actually bringing it into being.  As we're present with our dreams and imaginings, they become our reality, but it requires a feeling sense of them.  And, as with whatever we're being present with, it is a visceral, living experience.  How to bring Life into everything is to be present with it.  We animate things by our very presence.  When we bring Life into our dreams and our yearnings, when we live them in our imaginations, they have no choice but to become our reality.

I'm continually amazed by how much repetition it takes for a concept to make its way into my consciousness and be integrated.  And, even once the concept is integrated, how much focus and presence it takes to really embody it.  But, such is the way of Life.  And, the unrelenting patience of Life is so touching it makes we weep.  And, as I weep my heart opens and I'm flooded with waves of unlimited love.  And, I feel full.  And, the yearning goes away.  And, I am grateful. 

Saturday, March 23, 2013

What Do You Yearn For?

There is an independent, local bookstore in Albuquerque called Bookworks.  I love this bookstore.  They not only have great books displayed in an artistic and comfortable setting, but they also sometimes put on events and talks by authors.  I recently went to one such talk by a woman named Mary Johnson, who has written a book called "An Unquenchable Thirst" about her twenty years in the Catholic order of nuns called the Sisters of Charity, an order founded by Mother Teresa of Calcutta.

I went to hear her speak because the title of her book interested me, for I also have an unquenchable thirst.  And, the fact that she had been a nun, and had the courage to leave after twenty years, is also pretty interesting.  I ultimately didn't buy her book, but very much enjoyed her talk.  I might go back and get the book, but I'm already daunted by the stack of books I've got piled up to read.

It is the yearning that is the central element of her story.  In the beginning, at seventeen, when she entered the holy order of the Sisters of Charity, it was the yearning for communion with God and a need to serve.  And later, as she matures and feels the yearning of other things, it's the need for individuality and creative expression and love and relationship.  But, the yearning is always the thing that keeps us going.  Yearning is central to all of us.  And, ultimately, I think we all yearn for the same thing, although it might not look like that.

The thing I think we all yearn for is to know and accept ourselves.  The yearning for God, even though often manifested in an exterior and searching way, is really the desire to know and accept ourselves...intimately.  Individuality and creative expression come out of our sense of ourselves, and deepen as we live and as our innermost selves are revealed to us.  Our self-confidence comes from our knowledge of ourselves, being clear about who we are and what gifts we have to give and express into the world.

Mary Johnson felt that the way to satisfy and fulfill her yearning was to enter a nunnery and live a life of selflessness, obedience, and personal solitude.  But, as with all things, we don't always know what we're getting into until we're there.  And, once there, wherever and whatever there is, it's not always easy to see the truth of where we are as separate from our yearning.  Our yearning clouds our vision.  We get stuck in the perception that if we just persevere, our yearning will be satisfied.  Our perceived purpose will be fulfilled, and it will all have been worth it.  We sacrifice ourselves in service to this yearning.  We allow ourselves to be oppressed and suppressed, we quiet our voices and obey the rules and directives of those we think know more than we do, or are closer to our goal than we are.  Our yearning is so strong that we'll do anything, give anything, in order to fulfill it.

The mistake in this type of externally focused yearning is that we lose ourselves in it and to it.  We think that by holding to a certain set of rules or dogma--be it of church or institution or corporation--that we will reach the thing for which we yearn.  But, no.  We are always lead astray by thinking that the answers lay outside ourselves.  But, if we're lucky, all of what the yearning takes us through, will ultimately show us that looking outside ourselves, denying ourselves, is not the way.  And, once we figure that out, we'll turn inward, we'll turn to ourselves and start listening to our own inner voice.  Getting lost, for a long or short period of time, does eventually help us to realize that we must turn within.  But, that lonely road of the lost can go on for a very long time.  And, some leave the body without ever realizing the purpose of it all, and without satisfying their yearning.

Every spiritual path tells us to turn within, to listen to that still small inner voice.  And, we can hear that advice over and over for years and years without really understanding what it means.  We might have an intellectual concept of what it means, we might think we know what it means, but actually integrating what it means and embodying the continual practice of it is a very different thing.  And, we're really only on the true path once we start to turn inward.  As long as we are outward focused, we will continue to lose our way.  As long as we look outside of ourselves for ways to satisfy our yearning, we sentence ourselves to endless searching.  But, as I say, the journey can be long.  My journey has been long.  Even though I've let go of a lot and turned inward, the tunnel still looks pretty dark.  The nature of the journey has changed, but the unsatisfied yearning remains.

I long for the day when I feel a solid sense of self.  When the calm of self-knowing becomes more the norm than not.  I'm envious of confident, purposeful people.  Of course, some of those confident, purposeful people might be putting on a really good act, but I'm incapable of seeing through it.  To me, because of my own yearning, they seem to be glowing examples of what I'll never be.  Mary Johnson finally found the courage and the vision to break out of the straight jacket she'd put herself in.  She's now happily married and a successful writer, her twenty years of suppression now fodder for her creative impulses and acceptance into the world at large.  But, I wonder how well she really knows herself, how satisfied her yearning has been.  None of us ever know by looking in from the outside.  And, the only person we ever really know about at that depth is ourselves.

Each and every one of us has our journey to walk, and we walk that journey alone.  No matter how many people we have gathered around us, the walk to ourselves is a solitary one.  I wish for you what I want for myself, to know who I am in the depths of my soul.  To walk forward in the world, confident in that knowing, and to move purposefully from that knowing.  To contribute from the best and deepest and truest core of myself.  This is my yearning.  In this I am incomplete and unfinished.  And so, I keep walking.  What do you yearn for?   

Monday, March 18, 2013

Stuck in My Perception

There's a quote from Albert Einstein, which I'll include here:  "We can not solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them."  So true.

I have an electric stove.  I've always had gas stoves before, so this is new for me.  Plus, for the last thirty-five years or so, I've not done much cooking.  But, my whole relativity to how stoves and ovens work, is based on how ones that run on gas work.  I've been convinced that my current electric stove needed a new thermostat since I moved in, which is now three months ago.  Things took too long to cook and then didn't always turn out the way I thought they should.  A friend of mine suggested getting an oven thermometer to check the oven temperature with, which I did.  According to this thermometer, which I spent quite a bit on in a very upscale cooking store, the temperature of my oven was way off.

I reported what seemed to be a thermostat problem to my apartment complex management office.  The property management crew came by more than once to check the oven, but with their somewhat limited knowledge and skills with stoves and ovens, they weren't really sure what to do.  They ended up ordering a new heating coil for the oven, thinking that, since they didn't know what else to do, it might fix the problem.  It did not fix the problem, and they ended up switching out my stove for the one from the vacant apartment next door to me.  I had the same problem with the alternative stove from next door.  Hmmmmm.....imagine that.

I continued complaining to the apartment office, hoping to get a trained and certified technician to come and check out my stove.  I was told this was not possible because the complex had no agreement with the stove manufacturer and so there was no way to pay a technician.  Huh?  Okay...  I was then told that the complex was in the process of purchasing new stoves for all of the tenants, but that since I'd had so much trouble with mine, they weren't sure they wanted to buy the same brand again.  The person who was arranging the sale of the 250 stoves to my complex freaked out when the possibility that the sale would not go through was brought up.  This person, bless him, arranged for a technician to come out--just this once--to check out and fix my thermostat problem.

The technician came out and spent about an hour with me.  He had a very expensive thermometer with him that proved the one I had bought to be totally inaccurate.  It's now in the trash.  And, even though I was not wrong about the temperature in my oven varying greatly, I was told that it was not unusual for an electric oven, and that the idea was that it all evened out in the end.  Oh.  So, as it turns out, there was nothing wrong with my oven.  What was wrong, was my perception of the way my oven should be working based on my limited past experience with a different type of oven.

This is where the Einstein quote comes in.  My perceived problem was based in an erroneous mind set.  And, as long as I had that mind set, I was convinced my oven needed a new thermometer.  Until the technician came and checked out my oven and explained its workings to me, there was nothing to change my mind set...at least, from the outside.  I could have realized that the problem was with me and not the stove, but heaven forbid, after everything I'd put everyone through in regard to it, that I might be wrong.  My mind had created the problem due to a misperception, and the problem would persist until that misperception was corrected.

I had to get over myself.  I had to see the situation differently.  I had to find a new perception, a new attitude, toward the thing I had been perceiving as a problem.  We do this all the time.  I was stuck in the way I was seeing a situation, which then prohibited me from seeing any other solution than the one I thought necessary.  There actually was no problem.  I created the problem and then couldn't see my way out of it except through one avenue.  I hate that I did this.  I'm embarrassed that I did this.

The whole experience did bring me much more into consciousness about the ways in which we get stuck, though.  And, for that, I'm grateful.  I'm hoping the next time I perceive a problem, I'll be able to get myself out of the box in which I created it, and see it in a new way that will hold a solution or reveal to me my misperception.  Life will give me many opportunities to practice this, I'm sure.

We can have a spiritual experience with anything or anyone, and I had one with my stove.  My stove showed me how I get stuck in my position and am unwilling to move out of it.  My stove showed me how stubborn I can be when I think I'm right.  My stove showed me that there's more than one way to look at something.  My stove showed me that I need to pay less attention to what the dial says, and more attention to the food and how it's cooking.  I have to up my presence in relation to my stove and my food.  When something isn't going the way I think it should, I need to move off my position and consider alternatives.  I need to see where the resistance is coming from and open up to the field and allow a solution to come in.

My life is my spiritual path.  And, everything in it, including my stove, is capable of teaching me more about myself.  Because of this experience, I'm now more present and in touch with my stove; and, I'm now more present and in touch with whatever I happen to be cooking on or in it.  I'm also more aware of the ways in which I can get stuck.  The more deeply we know ourselves, the more we're able to accept ourselves, the more we're able to get out of our own way. 

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Staying With Myself

I'm sitting on my apartment balcony in the late afternoon sun.  My cat, Sophie, frolicks around my feet and makes surprising pounces onto my lap before jumping off and running around some more.  I realize I'm totally relaxed.  I don't have to go anywhere, I don't have to do anything, there's nothing calling me but this moment and the warmth of the sun.  It's quiet and I can hear a variety of birds singing in the background and talking to each other.  There's the distant sound of car engines making the drive up the grade of Academy toward Tramway.  And, shadows are starting to fall on the western slopes of the Sandias.

It takes a while to relax when you've been working non-stop for most of your life.  The last time I was off work for as long as I've been off now, was many years ago.  I'd gone through an emotional upheaval that was so devastating to me at the time that I couldn't work.  I stayed off work for a year and a half before realizing that I had to go back.  The financial consequences of that sojourn were unexpected and far-reaching in their impact, as well as being totally destructive.  I needed the time emotionally, although I was not able to meet my financial responsibilities for allowing myself that time.  But...after I'd been off for about a year--I didn't think I was going to script supervise again then either, but that time I was wrong--I had relaxed enough that I would sit in my living room at the end of the day and watch the light fade.  Just sit there and watch the light fade.  Nothing else going on, just watching and experiencing the light.

During that devastating time off, I got in touch with myself in ways that I'd not done before.  I was present with my pain and gave myself a reset...in all ways.  I didn't know in the beginning of that period of time that it would end up being a year and a half, that's just how long it ended up being before going back to work was something I could do; knew I had to do.  I don't know now how long my period of peaceful relaxation is going to be before Life pulls me in another direction.  It will be unexpected, since I have no agenda for myself at this time, and so I enjoy each precious moment of relaxation and quiet as it comes.  For, the unexpected is always around the corner, and I don't want to miss or not be present with a moment of this time I have now.

I breathe and I observe the sky.  I listen to the smallest sounds and find such joy in watching my cat play.  I cook and I clean and I find enjoyment in domestic tasks.  I read and I write and I stay present with myself.  No matter what comes next, it will be informed by this gift of quiet and relaxation during which I've gotten reaquainted with myself and the things that matter.  I had gotten very far afield in my quest for worldly success and financial gain.  Not that I didn't have good moments in that quest, I did, but I feel like I've come back to myself again.

Knowing who I am in this life has been a difficult path for me.  I'm very empathetic and have always had a hard time distinguishing what's my energy and what's someone else's.  I adapt very well and sometimes feel like I've lost myself in that adaptation to situations and relationships.  I think it's one of the reasons I need so much time alone.  When I'm alone, I have a much better sense of myself.  If I'm around other people too much I start to go a little crazy, which is why, when I was working, my weekends and days off were so important to me.  I would gather myself back up and get ready for the onslaught of another week surrounded by hundreds of people again.  And, it wasn't that I didn't love and enjoy those people, I did, but I hadn't developed the tools that would have protected me from taking on so much from them energetically.

I'm still working on developing the tools that will help me to stay in integrity with myself.  As with everything, it's a process.  But, I'm growing in awareness and in my ability to stay with myself.  And, it's not that I care less about people, it's that I'm getting better at allowing everyone their journey and not feeling that I need to help or fix anything for them, or bear their pain.  I can be with them, I can have compassion for them, and I can stay with myself at the same time.  Boundaries have become a big part of my current journey.  I've only recently realized that I didn't have any boundaries for most of my life.  But now, I see how important they are for all of us.  Boundaries help me stay in touch with who I am and not get drawn into someone else's energy.  They give me a basis for whether I want to say "yes" or "no."  They give me an internal structure that makes me feel safe, so that I'm not invaded by every stray or passing energy that's in my vicinity.  It's hard to know who you are, or what you're feeling or thinking, when your energy field is constantly being impacted by everyone else's energy field who happens to be around you.

I realize that for most of my life, I've been going out to others with my energy field.  My field moves out and joins with theirs in order to "grok" who they are, what they're feeling, what they want, what they think.  Once I've done this, and clicked into their energy, I know who they are, and I adapt the way I am in their presence to align with that.  Because of that level of adaptation, I lose myself.  I only know who I am in relationship to how I am around specific people or in specific situations.  It's been a journey of discovery to find out who I am, irrespective of who I happen to be around or what context I might be in.  Of course, there is an essence that comprises this personality and this soul, and that has come through everything else, but my lack of boundaries has created a lot of confusion for me.  It's also affected my self-confidence, because it's hard to have a lot of self-confidence when you're not sure who you are.  What is there to be self-confident about, other than your ability to adapt really well to any situation or personality you come into contact with?  That doesn't give you a real strong sense of self.

So, I'm getting to know myself more deeply.  I'm honoring what I like...what I like to do, what I like to eat, what I think is important, who I want to be with, where I want to be.  I'm paying attention to myself.  I'm keeping my energy with myself and keeping my third eye focused in on myself.  It's a practice, and I can still get drawn out of myself, but I'm much more aware now when I abandon myself than I used to be.  I catch myself and I draw myself back in.  It's a much more feminine way of being.  I stay with myself and allow Life to happen and respond to it as it does.  I'm not efforting to understand and grok my surroundings and the people who inhabit them, I'm allowing it all to be what it is, knowing that understanding will happen without my effort to make it so.

One of the most surprising results of this practice with boundaries and staying with myself is that I now feel safe in my body for the first time in my life.  I historically had a hard time grounding into my body.  When I would really "come in" I would often cry, because I was filled with fear.  But now, I don't do that anymore.  I'm actually able to be in my body and feel comfortable and safe.  It's a revelation.  I'm an adopted child and was always told that I had issues with abandonment, but it's only recently that I realize that the reason behind that was that I had abandoned myself.  I was rarely "home" in my body, and there was always an inherent discomfort to that.  Now, I'm able to be with myself and in my body--most of the time--which makes moot the whole abandonment issue.  It's one of those things that no longer holds me in its grip.

The sun is almost gone for today and color streaks across the sky.  I sit with myself in gratitude for all that my life holds.  And, I'm grateful for my growing awareness of the things that matter.   

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

"I" Do Not Exist

In my last posting, I wrote about the loss of the markers in my life that had previously defined me.  I also wrote about the possibility that no new markers would show up, and I'm beginning to think that that is more the probability than not.  It is actually my hope.  Because the markers are limitations that hold me prisoner to myself...in the small sense.

Today, I read something in "Mind Beyond Death" by Dzogchen Ponlop, that has moved me somewhat out of the need for further markers, or to think that there's any definition of who I am.  I'm going to quote it here:

"Ultimately, what we call 'life' is just an illusion of continuity--a succession of moments, a stream of thoughts, emotions and memories, which we feel is our possession.  And therefore we, too, spring into existence, as the possessors of that continuity.  However, upon examination, we discover that that continuity is dreamlike, illusory.  It is not a continuous or substantial reality.  It consists of single moments, which arise, dissolve and arise again, like waves on an ocean.  Therefore, this 'I' arises and dissolves in each moment as well.  It does not continue from one moment to the next.  The 'I' of one moment dissolves, and is gone.  The 'I' of the next moment arises afresh.  These two 'I's cannot be said to be the same or different, yet they are identified by conceptual mind as a single, continuous self:  'Yes, this is me..."

I was so grateful to read this, just at this moment, when who I am anymore is in question.  The idea of not holding on to any concepts of who I think I am is so relieving.  To die to each passing moment and to be reborn in the one that follows is so freeing.  I don't need to know who I am in any kind of mental, conceptual way.  This leaves the whole scope of being and experience open to me each and every moment.  There is no, "I don't do that" or "I do that" or "I'm that" or "I'm not that."  There's just being, pure and simple.  No preconceptions, no concepts or ideas about should or shouldn't being based on who I think I am.  The only continuity is the flow of Life itself, but who I am within it can and does change in every moment.

I suddenly feel free to allow each day to show up however it does and to respond to what shows up without the overlay of thinking I'm anything specific within it.  To drop the illusion that I am or need to be anything other than alive and present takes away expectation and judgment, takes it out of the realm of mind and into the realm of pure experience.  The mind is always trying to make sense of things and set up relativities and conistencies and categories.  When we exist in the realm of mind, we base what we're experiencing on what has gone before...we make judgments, we come to conclusions, we have expectations of how things should or shouldn't happen.  But, when we let the realm of mind drop away, along with all the inherent illusions it harbors, then we are open to the purity of whatever is happening as it happens.

I'm not saying, "Don't tether the camels."  But, what I'm discovering is that there is a way of being in the world that is about receiving each and every moment in its purity.  That I don't need to hold myself, or anyone else, to anything that has gone before.  I'm not defined by past experiences and external events and the perceptions of others, I'm not defined by anything.  Because I'm more than any definition is able to capture.  This developing awareness has freedom at the center of it, and I'm very excited about where it's taking me.  And, it not only takes me into freedom, it allows me to release everyone I know from any concepts of who I hold them to be.  Everyone is free to rebirth themselves in each and every moment.

Wow.

Monday, February 25, 2013

You Gotta Get Up

I write when the words start forming themselves in my mind.  And, they haven't been forming lately.  My outer life and my internal landscape have been very quiet.  But, in contemplating the following quote from Rabindranath Tagore, some words started to form.

"Let me not pray to be sheltered from dangers, but to be fearless in facing them.  Let me not beg for the stilling of my pain, but for the heart to conquer it."

Yes, I thought as I read it.  Please let me always remember this.  But, I also realized that I have often prayed to be sheltered from dangers and for my pain to be still.  I've often asked that things happen in ease and grace, to be made as easy and smooth as possible.  And, I have often not handled my pain very well, yearning to be released from it, to escape it, to deny it, to do everything possible other than be with it.

As much as I want life to be easy and pleasant, I know that my deepest growth has come through adversity and pain.  Adversity and pain are the things that demand that we push through the limitations of our understanding and our stamina, that demand that we break through to new personal paradigms of reality, that demand that we dig deep into who we are, and reshape ourselves in order to triumph.  Without the demands made through adversity and pain, we stagnate.  I'm not saying I'm not for breaks in the onslaught, but in general, if we're not challenged often enough to push us forward, it feels like pointless existence.

I've gone through so many changes over the last six or seven months that it feels like the basis of my reality has been pulled away.  All the markers that structured my previous reality are gone, and so I'm rather adrift in the cosmic void until new markers show up.  And, I don't know that any new markers will show up, at least in the way I was used to seeing them.  It's a new world and an entirely different frequency that we currently exist within, and it's changing as I write this; therefore, the structure of our lives, and the way we're used to seeing that structure, are also changing.  I think the current challenge is to accept the unknown and the fluid quality of life and trust that things are moving ahead exactly as they need to.  I get this intellectually, but integrating this concept is more difficult.

My current context of growth is to let go of the past and trust in Life itself enough to accept each day as it comes; to be unconcerned about what, if any, direction my life might be taking at this juncture, and to enjoy the journey.  But, the letting go is not so easy, my level of trust and surrender is spotty, and enjoying the journey is proving to be much more challenging than I would have thought.  I do have glimpses of release and moments of pure joy, but they don't stick around, they come and go.  Although, as I'm writing this, I realize that my concept of what I think should be consistent needs to go.  Humans love consistency, but that's not always the way, nor should it be.  Which is why we need to be fully present with whatever feelings of release and joy we get, as well as any other feelings or experiences.  Most things are fleeting, and best to be received as fully as possible in the moment they visit us...adversity and pain included.

And so, I realize that I've often prayed and begged and wished for things to be easy and safe rather than developing the fearlessness that would allow me to face whatever comes head on.  And, I've also prayed and begged and groveled for release from pain, on all its levels, rather than developing the depth of heart that would allow me to bear it in grace, or conquer it altogether.  In that way, I've been focusing on my personality's wants instead of my soul's needs.  But, it's time for the personality to step back and for the soul to step forward.  It's time to grow up, to stop complaining and avoiding and move forward in trust, both in Life and in myself, which might be the same thing.  No excuses or explanations, but acceptance and receptivity.

I might stumble and fall, but as Ben Affleck said last night in his Academy Award acceptance speech for his win for "Argo" for Best Picture of 2013, "It doesn't matter how you get knocked down in life, 'cause that's gonna happen.  All that matters is that you gotta get up."

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Free, At Last

I let go of something today...something big.  Something I'd been carrying for a long time.  Something that I'd been excited about in the beginning, but something that had started to feel like a heavy burden.  It started to feel like a "have to" and a "should do" rather than a "want to."  And, the new field doesn't support the "have to's" and the "should do's."  The new field supports what's true, what comes from our hearts, what we want, not something we've taken on for reasons other than heart's desire.

This project that I've put down, came to me at a time when I felt that I had nothing.  It gave me something to hold on to when I needed to hold on to something.  It gave me hope and something to work toward, to grow into.  It connected me to deeper things within myself and was the context for my growth for the last twelve years.  It took me on a number of trips around the globe.  It became the basis of some wonderful, and I hope lasting, relationships.  It was the thing that kept me going, and also the thing that got me to stop when it was time to stop.  And, as it showed me that I needed to let go of script supervising, it's now showing me that I need to let go of it as well.  I need to lay down the burden it's become, to walk away from the pressure of it, to allow a new way of life and a new focus to show itself.

I'm in a place that demands that everything that is a "have to" or a "should" or has the feel of pressure connected to it, has to go.  I've spent my life doing things I had to do, that I should do, that were necessary, that were expected, that were requested, and that seemed like the "right" thing to do.  I've existed under the pressure of living up to a set of expectations that are built on illusion, and it's time to stop.  Just stop.  It's time to really set myself free.  To climb out from under anything that feels constrictive in any way.  To let the great unknown spread out before me on a daily basis and see what shows up without the burden of anything in its way.

And so, I let go.  I let go of the thing that's been my guiding force for so long I thought I'd die if I put it down.  I thought I would be a failure if I put it down.  But, I'm still alive.  And, it's been a learning, not a failure.  We live and we learn and we try things and we let go and we try new things.  I don't know why we hold on so hard sometimes, but it's feeling like it's getting easier to let go.  The holding on was part of the old field, and the new field is helping us to let go.  And, as painful as it can be to let go sometimes, it's also a relief.

As soon as I realized it was time to say "no" to something that I'd said "yes" to for so long, I relaxed.  Tension flooded out of my body.  My lungs opened up and I could breathe.  I'd been in resistance for a long time and was starting to feel paralized, and I didn't understand why.  But, once I saw that the "no" was in resistance to something I felt I "had" to do, I also saw how that resistance had spread to the rest of my life.  And, until I became aware of the underlying "no," my life would stay on hold.  Today, I woke up.  As of today, the "no" is no longer hidden and acting out on the rest of my life.  I've acknowledged and honored the "no" for what it's really saying "no" to, and now my life can begin again.

Happiness and joy are creeping in.  Excitement for the unknown is creeping in.  The concept that I now have choice that is unburdened by any "shoulds" is dawning on me.  I'm starting to see what real freedom comes out of.  And, to give myself the gift of real freedom, feels very self-loving.  I've let myself off the hook.  I've stepped off my own personal cross.  And, a new path is open before me.  Where it leads has yet to be revealed, but as I walk forward into that unknown, at least I feel free.  Free, at last.