Let Life Be a Part of You

It’s one thing to take a step in the direction of your desires when you’re feeling on top of the world, it’s another thing when you feel like the world is lying on top of you.

Throughout my life, I have dealt with bouts of depression.  I know it takes a lot to pull yourself out of it, especially if you allowed yourself to spiral.  Once I hit the bottom of the staircase, I laid there curled-up in a pile of self-pity and drowning in a pool of self-loathing.

So what did I do to get myself out of this state I chose to visit? I knew I could not remain a victim of my circumstance. I had to admit the fact it was my choice to take this trip.   Next, I got up. I had to connect instead of remaining isolated from the world around me. Sometimes I had to ask for help.

The key is to recognize when you’re standing at the top of the stairs, and not wait till you have started tumbling down the steps of despair.

A couple of things I know that worked well for me were:

1)Taking my shoes off and allowing my skin to connect with the earth. This helped ground me.

2) Connecting with others, especially children.  They are fabulous role models for living in the moment.

I found my purpose and balance when I allowed life to be a part of me.

Eat Simply So That You May Simply Live

The point of living simply is to calm you down, not stress you out. Yet, I have noticed for many people it does the exact opposite.
“Eating simply” from home has become an oxymoron. People think if their food is not dripping with fat, soaked in dairy, and wrapped in gluten it will taste disgusting.
Let me ask you this, how would you know what it tastes like if it’s buried?
I remember the first time someone told me that taking a shower outside was the best thing ever. I thought they were smokin’ crack! Me outside, with no clothes on, in front of God and everyone? Yeah, NO!
Guess what? I had a whole new realization. I felt great being bathed by the suns natural rays and a cool breeze to dry me off.  It also felt liberating.
Until you discover the flavor of your food unwrapped, only then can you wrap your senses around the simplicity of food in the raw.
Then if you want to spice it up, eat your food naked.

Practicing Non-Attachment

 

 

 

Two months ago, I asked a Buddhist nun, why she shaved her head.  She said it helps us to let go of attachment.

For last two months, I have thought about this practice.  It was not easy to make this decision to shave my head.  Although, I knew it would be a great learning experience toward the practice of letting go of attachment.

Having an attachment to your life creates unnecessary suffering.

We have an attachment to the food we eat, the love we share, the gifts we give, the conversations we have with others, the day we wake up to, the children we raise and the kind of car we drive. We have an attachment to whether we live or die, the sun shines, the wind blows, our child gets a part in the school play, how our hair looks and who’s on first and what’s on second.

You can set an intention and you can have a dream. The key is not to be attached.

Life often shows up differently than we envisioned or planned.  A practice of letting go of our grip on the reins of our life,  and let life unfold as it will, enables us to live without limiting the love we have to share

 

 

 

Circle of Life

 

 

This week, I had the wonderful opportunity to witness the circle of life.  I was invited by a volunteer for the Turtle Patrol Coastal Wildlife Club to watch a mother give birth to a clutch of 75 -150 eggs.  Manasota Key is a nesting ground for the Loggerhead Sea turtles.

From eggs, to hatchlings, to adults their lives are in danger of becoming extinct. The club helps to preserve their existence by making the public aware of their nesting sites.

By having this opportunity to witness such a miracle I was reminded just how precious life is.

My grandmother passed away this week.  Our family was planning a birthday party in November to celebrate her 100th birthday.  Upon her passing she gave me a gift. My daughter called me for the first time in 8 years, and we had a long and meaningful conversation.

Whether we live a moment, a week, a month, or 100 years; our life is always in danger of becoming extinct.

Take time to love and honor the miracle of your life, you are not guaranteed how long your circle will last.

“It’s the circle of life

And it moves us all

Through despair and hope

Through love and faith”

 

Let It Go

 

Have you ever sat on the sidelines watching others have fun, desperately wanting to partake but was afraid if you did, you would be told: “you’re not acting your age?”  I was often told growing up, “to act my age!” I do not blame my parents. They taught what they knew.  Although,  I carried this baggage with me into adulthood, proving no real purpose except to prevent me from fully living my life.  That was me, until 2 years ago.

My friend Kate was great at bursting out in song and dance.  I loved that about her.  One day Kate and I left the park after an afternoon of hiking.  Shortly after we left, it started to rain.  She pulled the car over and asked me to get out.  But it’s raining, I said. I gave her a gazillion reasons why getting out of the car was not something I wanted to do.  She grabbed my hands pulled me out of the car and said, “let’s dance.”  I couldn’t believe how much I resisted her invitation.  But I danced in the rain. The more she encouraged me the more I felt myself let go of the resistance and had fun.

To this day, I hold that memory dear to my heart. Something so simple, and yet, it made such a significant impact in my life.  It felt freeing to let go and enjoy dancing in the rain with someone who cared enough to help me release a shackle.

The mantra “act your age” still rings in my ear when I want to bring the child out in me to play. But I continue to practice letting go of that mantra, and when the opportunity presents itself,  I am reminded by that kind and gentle nudge, to dance in the rain.

Let it go, let it go                                                                                                                                  I Can’t hold it back anymore

Here’s to you, Kate.  THANK YOU!

 

 

Nobody Does it Better.

IMG_6690You truly are the best!

More often than not our remedy to being sick is to jump in the car and run to the Dr. without first asking, “What have I been doing to weaken my immune system?”

For the last two weeks, I have been dealing with an infection.

For as long as I can remember, my habit has been to worry. Funny thing is, almost 95% what I worry about never comes to fruition. Yet, I have given much of my time and energy to worrying.

Worry equals stress. Extended worrying equals chronic stress. Our body is not in favor of chronic stress. In fact, it rebels in the form of inflammation, tension and eventually illness or disease sets in.

Since I moved to Florida, I have done more medical interpreting in the last 6 months than I have done in 23 years.

Now I would like to totally blame my recent infection on the exposure to various medical settings. But I know I had a part to play in the weakening of my immune system i.e. worrying, making my body more susceptible.

Your body wants to be healthy. Getting to the root cause lessens the odds of recurring symptoms.

I am not saying not go see the Dr. and let him/her help you resolve the symptoms. But the Dr. is only providing a temporary “Band-aid.”

You can be the REAL hero here by addressing the root cause in an effort to maintain good health.

Nobody does it better.                                                                                                               Nobody does it half as good as you.                                                                                           Baby, you’re the best.

Make Someone Happy

IMG_6614So often we forget, without everyone doing their part, we would not be able to navigate through our life with the ease and grace in which we do.

I wondered how I could make a small difference in someone’s life.  Particularly, those lives who often go unnoticed.

One morning on my way to work I took the toll road.  Instead of just driving away after paying my toll, I collected the name from the nameplate and said, “Thank you, “Mary,” for all you do to make my life a little easier. I appreciate you.” When she stopped her robotic routine of taking, counting and exchanging money, she looked up at me wearing the most beautiful smile and said, “OH, THANK YOU.  No one has ever said that to me.”

Since that day, I have incorporated others, in my growing attempt not to take people for granted i.e. convenient store clerks, housekeeping staff, maintenance crews and “busboys.”

It doesn’t take make much to make a difference in someone else’s life.

 

 

 

Express Yourself Through Gratitude

“As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.” ~  John F. Kennedy

Let your family know you love them…

and love those who show us unconditional love

Give back to your community

Show loving kindness

Enjoy and honor nature for it supports our existence

Take Care of the vessel you have been given

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“Gratitude helps you to grow and expand; gratitude brings joy and laughter into your life and into the lives of all those around you.” ~ Eileen Caddy