Thursday, June 28, 2007

Perpetual Vacation

Play… and suddenly the whole world is recess.

I think, for most of us, in order to feel as though we are really worthy of a good vacation/change of scenery/different perspective, we need to feel like we’ve worked our tails off. Especially, those last couple of weeks leading to our up-coming “off” time. We hustle and bustle getting our projects completed or at best, to a good stopping point so others aren’t left carrying the load; confer with the neighbors about pet sitting and plant watering; arrange for rides to the airport; pick up those last much needed items you don’t want to be searching for once you reach your destination… all the while thinking, “I can’t wait to get on that plane – hit the road – the beach –the slopes – the hammock…” Anticipation abounds! You’re GOING somewhere!

Like the title of Jon Kabat-Zinn’s book says: “Wherever You Go, There You Are” - in my other words “You Can’t Escape Your Self”. So, why then do we continue to choose to compartmentalize our lives? - Over there I’m happy, here I am not. Fridays are good, Saturdays are better. - I think it is only when we can rest in true acceptance of who we are, however that is and wherever that is, the vacation mentality can be a perpetual state of being.

We all have access to a change of scenery or new perspective right here within us at every moment. By allowing ourselves to play within that realm, blurring the lines, if you will of bad/good or better/best we loose that sense of needing to “get away” and “recess” becomes a regular part of our lives!

Thursday, June 21, 2007

The Art of Letting Go

Relax... and suddenly everything seems easier.

We’re thinking of moving to Costa Rica. We are there now, actually. And although I feel like I’m supposed to be on vacation, there’s much more going on for me than just some fun-in-the-sun. Don’t get me wrong, there have been some nice visits to the beach and lolling about by the pool. But more than that, there have been visits to properties, talks with realtors, architects, home owners and business owners both transplants and locals, as we try in a two week period to glean as much information as we can about everything we can think of and more that we haven’t.

And then there’s my little brain trying to get itself around the big concept of “life in this sleepy beach town” which on one hand feels great, but on the other hand, there’s the idea of leaving my home and friends and family behind as well as trying to absorb all the logistics of making a substantial move like this happen…!

And then I stop and take a moment to let go of the drama I am creating and relax where I am, in this moment… and this moment… to acknowledge and honor the continuum of every moment in every day in every year and decade that has brought me to this very spot, here on this beautiful earth, here in my open heart… at least for this moment… and this moment. And let go. And relax… and suddenly – everything seems easier.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Nothing To Fear But Fear Itself

Be Fearless… and suddenly you are supported by your own strength.

A friend of mine once told me she read somewhere: “Fear comes from not trusting that we can handle whatever comes our way.” and, even though on some level I know it, this quote stopped me in my tracks.

All my life I have been a consummate worrier. My family even nicknamed me WW (Worry Wart) when I was young. Give me something to worry about and you could bet I would, and if there wasn’t anything immediate, I would create something… hence, all my life-long “what ifs”.

FDR reminds us “We have nothing to fear but fear itself.” Fear is a concept based on something that hasn’t happened yet. It exists in our minds when we are not present in the moment. We can fear for our success, our health, our wealth, the safety of ourselves and loved ones and ultimately our lives… but, generally speaking, those are all concepts, ideas of how we think something might unfold.

Yet, even so, to sit with that fear and trust that we will “handle” whatever comes our way is a tall order, but I like to call up the analogy that “darkness cannot survive in light”. We fear what we do not know, cannot see or understand. The nocturnal forest is filled with shadows and gloom and all kinds of unforeseen circumstances, but as the morning sun filters through the trees, lighting our way, we know that nothing has really changed but our perspective.

I look to my Lady Guru to light my way with the trust and strength she brings me in knowing that I can and will “handle” whatever comes my way.

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Celebrate... You!

Open... and suddenly you are unwrapping your greatest gift... YOU!

We give so much. We nurture, we coddle, we support, we council. We wipe the tears of our children, our friends, our lovers. We nurse our dear ones back to health with gentle, loving kindness and patience. We take the time to cook a meal or run an errand for those who can’t, and goddess knows what else. But, how do we practice this way for us? How do we open to our own Self…to honor, nurture, coddle our own being?

When I get into those times when I am my own worst critic, or not cutting myself enough slack, I try to remember to ask myself “What would you tell your best friend?” And, suddenly, I am forced to step away from my overly critical, narrow perspective to a more gentler and compassionate place. (Why does it always seem easier to do it for others?)

There is truth in the old adage “You can’t truly love another until you can love yourself”. To open to our own pain, our own difficulties and embrace them without judgment and with acceptance is a gift we can give ourselves (and others) time and again – because if we don’t give enough care to ourselves, we cannot be fully present for those who need us.

Let us allow our Lady Guru to TRULY celebrate her own light so it may shine even more brightly for others!