“Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don’t resist them; that only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like.” ― Lao Tzu
I am sitting at my desk listening to the music of a damp summer morning. A squirrel is sitting in the maple tree making a squeaky clucking sound over and over. It sounds like he is talking with a cardinal who is singing sweet melodies with the tiny finch and other song birds. Sheets of rain finally poured from the sky overnight dampening the dry earth. Every now and then the droning buzz of a cicada rises and falls. Early morning light cast soft shadows across the wet grass.
Everything feels rich, moist and full—peaceful.
I love mornings like this, space to linger and notice. To feel the warming air wrap around my bare legs, to smell the earth and listen to the sounds of the neighborhood before people wake up. This space also grants me the opportunity to feel and listen to what is happening inside my body, mind and soul.
Today I feel rested and relaxed. My joints feel loose and open. My muscles are not achy from tension and stress. My mind is alert and noticing but not hyper aware. I feel like I can let down my guard and not scan for danger. My breath deep, full and measured. I don’t have to force it. Everything is ok, I don’t feel called to change, fix or do. This is peace for me.
This is also kind of rare for me and my inquisitive brain wants to dive in and figure out what created this state of peace in me. I want to know so I can replicate and never suffer again. My mind starts going over the last few days to see what conditions may have contributed to the development of this moment.
A few things come to mind right away.
The power went out at the office of my day for two days, so I had an unexpected long weekend. Those two extra days of less stressing helps. Or maybe it is because I finally started work on proposal to teach writing workshops locally. Just starting the proposal released tension and fear I didn’t know I was carrying. Procrastination always creates a feeling of constriction in my belly, my shoulders and my breath.
Or maybe it is that after 12 years away from working in ceramics, I took a leap and enrolled for an independent study class at a local art center. The last few Saturday mornings I stand in the a dusty ceramic studio in the basement of a 100 year old building wedging my clay. Ceramics was the center of my creative work for years. I was immersed in using clay to transform me and tell my story. Today after so many years away, I feel a little awkward yet my body and soul remember what it feels like to put my hands in the cold wet clay. I intuitively remember what to do and how to push and mold the clay to tell my story.
Ceramic work and visual art in general is an essential part of me that I have been neglecting for years. Really since D. died over 3 years ago and my son Max moved out. I am gathering these parts of me I left behind as I grieved and transitioned to a new phase of my life. I didn’t know letting go, learning how to slow down and that there is nothing to prove to anyone could take so much energy.
It may be some or all of these things or it may simply be that my hormones are balanced, or I got enough sleep last night, or I had enough alone time. The bottom line is, I am not sure why the peaceful state, and I don’t need to know. For me letting go of the need to know is more important than knowing. This is where I take a risk and just accept the goodness.
So it is late July, life is teeming with possibility and abundance. Today I am going to let myself rest and watch. Rest and allow. No doing or fixing. No knowing. Just accepting.
Here is this week’s Inspiration to Open Your Heart
The Secret Language of Girls on Instagram by Rachel Simmons- A fascinating look at how tween girls use Instagram to compare, connect and get validated. I think of how hard middle school and high school was for me, the ache of constant striving to figure out where I fit in until I finally gave up and followed what I thought was my own path but I can see I only disconnected and put up huge walls to protect myself. I can’t even begin to imagine what it is like to be a young girl today. So much pressure and no where to hide.
Just Don’t Do It by Debbie Cameron- Another feminist article but this time about the debate of policing women’s speech. Very thought provoking and well worth the read.
Transforming Lack Into Abundance- Seeing the So Muchness by Shulamit Ber Levtov- I love this post about Shulamit finding a new definition of abundance and shifting a moment of craving into something bigger and infused with peace. I have to admit when I read headlines about abundance I tend to stiffen up a bit. I don’t want to read about magical thinking and creating more but this is about the seeing and allowing the abundant world we live in.
Attention is Not Our Currency by Sarah J. Bray- Jen Lee shared this on Facebook this week and I had to share. Wow, we don’t do our work to win the popularity contest but rather because we are called to do the work. No matter what amount of attention we get we need to keep showing up to do our work. Another post well worth the read.
As I mentioned I am dabbling (can I really dabble) with some ceramic work again. These artists make my heart swoon and my creative juices flow.
I am pleased to announce a couple of ways we can connect in the next month.
I hope you will join me and other women on August 5, 2015 at 7:00 pm EST for an Open Hearted Wisdom Circle. Open Hearted Wisdom Circles are free facilitated groups that foster the opportunity for not only deep sharing but deep, focused listening, which helps us hear the wisdom in our hearts. Learn more here.
Let’s meet in person! If you live in the Southeastern Michigan area I am super excited to announce that I am co-hosting a live in person one day Kindred Connection Workshop with Jen Lee and Anna Oginsky on August 22, 2015 from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm EST. You can find more information Here.