Thoughts on a Busy Sunday

TogetherI love him because he stops in the middle of what he is doing to come inside and let me know there is a bird nest in the tree he is pruning, even though it is completely empty.

Because he smiles at me as I climb the ladder to see the home that once had been, that still could be.

Because he understands the catastrophe that is looming when I tell him that my favorite pair of Dr. Seuss socks are thinning at the heels.

Because he can answer the question, “What does she like?” sometimes better than me.

Because of silly walks, silly voices, and silly dances– he reminds me what it is to play.

And above all, he encourages me to heal into the spaces I’ve been holding back.

A dozen years, a dozen lifetimes, a dozen ways we have been us– and I love him.

Hands That Cradled Their Loves

Hands of Evolution

Thirteen-point-seven billion years ago it is speculated that life began as two particles collided from some distant point, and their communion brought about life. This post is not about how you do or do not define existence. This is not about who or what you give credit to for creation. But, you should be warned that as I continue, a fair amount of language will be used that might make you feel like this is a religious post. I assure you, it is not. It’s merely that we’ve forgotten the origin of words. We feel as though words like holy and sacred belong in front of an altar, forgetting that in many ancient texts our bodies are called temples, leaving our consciousness as the divine. I’m in the process of taking back these words; of once again welcoming them into my lexicon and allowing myself to stand in the midst of my own worship.

Today’s word is miracle– a highly unlikely event that brings about a pleasant outcome. Life, my friends, is a miracle.

I’ve been dabbling in a bit of genealogy lately, unlocking treasures that my family does not speak about. Connecting dots, trying to put a story to the lives that eventually led to my existence. And here is what I have found:

Aside from the miracle of two particles colliding (yes, a very simplistic way of describing the sudden appearance of singularity) in a vast amount of nothingness and everythingness, aside from life beginning in single cells and mutating to more complex organisms who eventually ventured from sea to land… those of us that are here are here because of a blood-line’s worth of people who made it. They made it through the uncertainty of early pregnancy. They grew strong and resistant to disease. They made it through dark periods, rough patches, and awkwardness associated with adolescence. These are not gifts granted to everyone. Many don’t make it, but our ancestors did!

They did not die during Black Plague, nor the Spanish Influenza. They did not die in the countless wars that have plagued our globe since the beginning of civilization. They endured the long suffering of injustice, of slavery, or genocide, and they made it out alive. That in its self is miraculous.

But, for me, what is most miraculous and humbling, is that I’m here in this present form, occupying this version of me, because of a man who did not make it. You see, what researching my family history has taught me is that my Little Grandma, born four generations earlier, was married to a man that was not my grandfather in the early part of 1918. They were married for nine short months before he died in World War I.

When I look back in my family tree, it’s easy to see the branches that are there… but it’s also nice to stop and honor the ones that may have broken off. To acknowledge the loves that began to fade and that lives that were tragically taken at times too soon. We always take something from the people who cross are paths. Each moment of our journey has led us to exactly this point. Today I give praise not only to bloodline, but I also hold in reverence the hands that cradled their loves but nothing else. H.P. Fuller, hallowed be thy name.

photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/14405058@N08/4697832947″>Cave Paintings, Hand Prints, 12,000 to 10,000 years old</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a&gt; <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/”>(license)</a&gt;

Grace Enough to Grow

Grace Enough to Grow

A few gold nuggets from my morning reading (emphasis mine):
 
“It’s odd that those in power condemn people who want to change for being whimsical and impractical, but actually what it being demanded is pragmatism, SYSTEMS THAT FUNCTION. People get the resources they need, the resources are managed efficiently, and the conditions required to create resources are respected. None of that happens. It can’t, because they’ve prioritized a bizarre, selfish, and DESTRUCTIVE idea over common sense.”
 
“Redemption is possible and compassion a prerequisite. If we don’t allow people to change, then how can we change the world?”
 
The first quote spoke to the revolutionary me, the second to the relational me… then I started thinking that there isn’t a separation. True change happens within individual lives, when we choose to take a deep breath instead of reacting, when we choose to care for ourselves, our families, our neighborhoods, our land. It happens when we refuse to participate in systems that no longer serve ALL of humanity.
 
We can look at this with a global/economic perspective, but we can also look at this at the individual level. Are there areas in life where I am clinging to a selfish paradigm? In what way am I choosing destruction over life? How am I actively participating in my own destruction?
 
For me, this often relates to the choices I make about what I allow to enter my body. Is the food I am choosing life giving? Is my inner voice kind? Am I building myself up, or tearing myself down? Are the relationships I keep reinforcing life, growth, and expansion, or are they limiting? Do I associate with people who believe in compassion? People who believe in letting others change? Am I stuck in reliving past wounds?
 
Freedom is not found in a document, it is found in a life lived without fear. Redemption is found in compassion, and salvation in community. Grace is life continuing to persevere despite our best efforts to thwart it… and love is what makes it all possible.
Credits:
Quotations taken from Russell Brand’s book, Revolution.

We Have Come

I was born in the wrong time.

My thoughts, a straight line, trying to make sense of the curves and loops that my body just knows. We are caught up on point A and point B, not realizing that both points occupy the same space, and can be found within us.

I was born in the wrong time.

A steady beating drum, calling my tribe home. Take refuge, dear ones, under my heartbeat. Make my rib cage your sweat lodge and pour your prayers out, drip by sweaty drip, to the Mother.

I was born in the wrong time.

My mind forgets the medicine that my bones dance to. Reason and training try to silence the quaking of my heart, telling me everything is necessary for progress. Telling me I feel too much.

I wasn’t born in the wrong time.

I have always been here. My breath, the wind which carries seeds to plant. Each footstep creating canyon and mountain. Rising oceans, the tears I have cried. I have never walked quietly on this Earth.

I am reborn all of the time.

In the grasp of lovers. The prayer-song of the birds. In the welcoming of each new morning, each new beginning. I am the cleansing fire and the life-giving rain. I am love and communion, flowing.

Holy is our name.

Earth Day 2015-

I have come to terms with the future.
From this day onward I will walk
easy on the earth. Plant trees. Kill
no living things. Live in harmony with
all creatures. I will restore the earth
where I am. Use no more of its resources
than I need. And listen, listen to what
it is telling me.
– M.J. Slim Hooey

Happy Earth Day!

How do you intend on honoring our Earth today? Perhaps you will remember to turn off lights and ceiling fans as you leave rooms? Maybe you will spend an evening without watching the television and curl up to a book? You could make a vegan dinner, and start incorporating more meatless meal plans into your routine. You could pack a picnic and walk to the local park, enjoying time with your companion and watching the sunset. If you’ve ever been curious about installing solar or buying an electric car, make the phone call and learn more information. Sign up for a CSA (community supported agriculture). Find a Farmer’s Market. Draw out plans for a garden. Start composting. There are so many things that you can do!

Or, you can sit in silence for this brief moment. Clear your mind of the noise. Notice the sounds of life that we often overlook as we are hurrying through our day. Welcome the sounds of the songbird with a smile. See if you can tell what tune the wind is humming through the leaves of all the trees. Pause. Be grateful. Breathe in and be thankful for the trees that do their best to convert carbon emissions into oxygen. Be here– in this moment with me and all of the rest of life and creation. Be here and celebrate life.

Enjoy. Be kind to yourself. Be kind to one another. Be kind to the Earth.

A Letter to My Twenty-Year-Old Self

Once I got a love letter

My Dearest,
Learn to speak up. Live unapologetically. Don’t be an asshole, especially to yourself. Own your story and own who and how you are. Avoid those who leave negativity in their wake. You do not have to like everyone you meet. If they are going to talk about others to you, you can bet your ass they are going to talk about you with others. Don’t be afraid to feel. Feel deeply. Feel it all. Believe in people even when it hurts. Be honest about your flaws. Don’t try to make something or someone fit in your life just because they are something you grew up with. Fall in love with many things. Use “hate” sparingly. Write, even when it is shit. Speak your truth. There is a huge difference between feeling betrayed and feeling disappointed… and chances are you are just disappointed. Learn to say, “I’m sorry.” You do not need to have the last word. There is no such thing as a guilty pleasure. We are meant to enjoy life. You do not need to find your happiness in anyone other than yourself. Listen to the little voice inside your head. Trust your gut. Learn which battles are truly worth fighting—usually these are the ones in which you don’t have any stake in the outcome. Forgive. Forgive. And just in case you missed it, forgive. Forgive yourself. Forgive the assholes. Forgive those who disappoint you. Forgive yourself for trusting the assholes and letting them continue to disappoint you. Everyone is going through something. Do not speak in absolutes, because if anyone pays attention they will notice you are full of shit. Learn to breathe. Leave your cell phone at home on purpose. Rethink your position on tough love. Say yes to new things, but master the art of saying no. Stretch every day. Do planks. Don’t get caught up in the social media trap. Spend time with your friends in real life. It’s okay that you still don’t know what you really want to do with your life… that’s how most people are. It’s okay to walk away from relationships. It’s okay to be angry. It’s okay to feel like you failed. Most of the time when you feel you failed, you didn’t do as poorly as you thought. Learn to be comfortable with touch. Whenever you feel the need to cut your hair, just don’t, otherwise you spend most of your life growing your hair out of the awkward period you dislike. Question advice from “experts” and trust that you are the only true expert when it comes to your body. Listen to your body. Love your body. Meditate. Spend time in silence. Practice gratitude. Disconnect. Do not believe in “good debt.” Consume less. Do routine maintenance on anything you want to last. Always have an open door policy. Do not take things personally. Stop overthinking. Not everything needs to be planned. Perfection is relative. Everything is fluid. Embrace your own change. Embrace the change in others. Learn the difference between recreational drinking and self-medicating. Take the time to find a counselor that works for you. Avoid arrogant people; they tend to bring out the worst in you. Just do not engage. Do more things outside. Enjoy the sweet benefits of local honey. Give up dairy as soon as you can. Focus on building people up. Learn about things you enjoy. Always ask questions. Put yourself out there. Take risks. Get out of your own way. Be your biggest fan. Love yourself wholly, and the rest will fall into place.

                                                                                                                   I love you.
Me

To My Body-

The Body Beauty                                                                    (“The Body Beauty” by Hamed Masoumi copy of licence can be found by clicking on picture link)

I swear

that one of these days

I will listen.

One of these days

I will wake with the sunrise

in praise for the

day I was given–

arms stretched forth

grasping the possibilities

in the day that lay before me.

I swear

I will relish in having

nothing to do.

I will define my worth

by my relationship to you,

my ability

to stop…

to rest.

To pause and reflect.

My ability to start anew.

I swear one of these days

I will learn to say no.

To grant others space

enough to give,

to lead,

to love.

I will trust what it is you can do.

I will nurture you.

Build you up.

Body, one of these days

I will be kind.

One of these days

you won’t have to break

before I say

I’m sorry…

before I live my life

to the benefit

of you.