Monthly Archives: February 2010

Eating cereal with a fork

I always eat my breakfast, on weekdays, at work at my desk. I keep utensils in my desk drawer for when I need them for my breakfast or my lunch, and I usually have spoons, forks and knives. On a recent morning, I brought cereal for my breakfast, and when I got to work, realized that I didn’t have a spoon in my drawer, only forks and knives. I thought about it for a moment.

I could eat my cereal with a fork if I had to, right?

Before I went ahead and did that, however, I checked our lunchroom, and there was a spoon there that I was able to use. Problem solved. But it got me thinking: what if I had to use a fork? What if I had to make do with what I had? What if I just had to rely on the resources that I possessed at the time? Well, I would have been fine; I would have managed; I would have been just fine.

So, it got me thinking about the difference between managing with what we have, whether it is a fork, or a situation that is bigger; and just taking the bare minimum, doing without even though we don’t have to. The difference between finding contentment in each and every moment, no matter what it contains, and purposely living without something, or somene, just because we think that is what we have to do.

I have existed in both spaces.

I am usually quite happy in the place that I am, no matter what the circumstance. I make the best of any situation, most of the time, even if it is uncomfortable, or less than what I wanted, or even when it is close to what I most want. I always make my best effort to appreciate where I am and who I am with, to stay in the moment, to have a deeper understanding of all of the moments of my life. I am not perfect at it, but do my best to stay there.

I have also been in the space when I do without, sometimes unnecessarily, because I believe that I really don’t need something, or someone, to be present with me. I purposely do without, almost in a martyr type fashion, because it seems like the right thing to do, the humble thing to do.

And that second space is the one that I am trying to break out of.

I believe in not taking more than we need in this world; in being simple in our needs but abundant in our relationships. I believe that more is not always better. However, I also have deprived myself at times just because I didn’t think I should do something more. And, I am realizing lately that I deserve better than that.

I don’t have to indulge every desire; however, I don’t have to deprive myself, either. I can achieve balance without overindulging; I can be kind to the earth and resources without having to do without completely. I am realizing that when I live without, simply because I think I should, it really isn’t necessary, and I am giving myself the message that I don’t deserve what it is I want and need.

So, I don’t plan on finding a way to justify a new car, or a wardrobe or home addition, but I am getting more comfortable in knowing that depriving myself is not always noble, and it isn’t the best way to show love for myself either.

So, if I want to eat cereal with a fork, I will.

But it is nice to know that I don’t HAVE to.

BOLD, with action.

I woke early this morning thinking about our church, thinking about organized churches in general. For many weeks of Sundays before the ones of 2010, I would awaken early to get ready for church, and to go there and hear the word, and feel it, and to possess the hope that one day, our congregation would openly and lovingly embrace and welcome LGBT persons. For the Methodist churches, that is a movement that is called Reconciling Ministries. Methodist churches actively educating themselves on the needs and struggles of LGBT persons; how those persons have been actively excluded and alienated from their churches; and, take action in inviting and openly welcoming those persons into their congregations. Bold, yes. But so necessary.

So, I wondered what it was about this process that seemed to not be possible in our congregation. I don’t think it was out of a lack of wanting it to be; for there were some congregation members who seemed willing, albeit very few, actively willing to go forward.

I don’t see lack of courage as an issue; for there were many times, in speaking to the congregation about this very issue, when I myself was filled with dread and fear; so in my mind, courage isn’t required.

So this morning, this quote came barrelling into my awareness, and it says it so well for me:

“You cannot be shy when facing injustice; you must be BOLD, bold with action.”

This quote which I thought of this morning, perfectly states the dilemma of churches I believe. The shyness that many of us humans have, including myself, about speaking up for what is right, for what we want, simply in speaking up for ourselves.

You see, I am the author of my life; I always have been, but now, I am actively writing the story. And, these are a few of the non-negotiables of which I am certain:

I MUST speak up for what is right. I cannot feel shy or self-conscious about it, for when I do, I give up to the injustice that is occurring. This applies to everything I have stood for so far in my life, whether it be children’s issues, LGBT issues, or the rights of animals. I need to clearly speak for justice.

I CAN be afraid. It is almost like walking forward, intentionally into my life, calls for a certain amount of fear. Fear keeps me balanced in a way; it keeps me clear in my purpose, because it helps to weed out my impulsivity and my actual goals, in a way. I have the capability of feeling courageous, but sometimes that is lagging a bit behind. I often begin when I am presenting a training on LGBT identity, by telling my audience that when I come out to someone, I always feel as if I am jumping off of a cliff; exilerated, but scared as hell.

In addition, being bold about injustice will always be important to me, however, speaking up for what I truly want, standing in my truth, will always be just as important. I must also not be shy about speaking up for what I want; I must be bold, with action. At times, speaking up for what I truly want, for what my truth really is, seems self centered and wrong. However, as I explore more and more about myself, my life, and my purpose here, I know that to do less than that is the wrong thing. I must speak up, and, I must also DO if I want to author the life I truly want for myself.

So, my friends, I advise you to do the same; to truly live the life that you are meant to live; to tap into what is your integrity; to not be shy, but to always be bold, with action.

The cave

I had a thought this morning. Although I don’t rock climb, or mountain climb, I might want to someday. I don’t see myself as enjoying those dangling, rope-using kinds of climbs, but getting to the top of a mountain, which I have done a few times in the past, that I could enjoy again.

Well, my thoughts took me to those that do climb those cliff faces; those rock shears that have very little room for error. And, then I was thinking about those climbers, and their need to find shelter during those times, and what better place for shelter than a cave.

Then, I thought of me, my life, my journey, my process.

I thought about the fact that every day of my adventuresome life, I am climbing a big mountain. I am blazing a trail, and using my ropes to repel to the next peak. I am wearing the most flexible, durable climbing shoes that I can. I have my equipment strapped to my back. I feel fearful, and fearless, at the same time. I feel ready, and uncertain, at the same time.

Then, I realize that I need to rest. I need to stay where I am for a time. Maybe a storm is brewing. Maybe I just need to feed and water myself.

Maybe, I just want to stop and look at the scenery.

So, I find a cave.

The way that I see it, I need two things of this cave. First, I need to make peace with this space. It is dark, damp, and unknown. It is a bit scary, and uncertain as to what is contained in it. However, I need to be here, for a time, and so, I trust that I will be well within it. So, I make peace with it.

The other thing that I need to do, is that I need to use this cave for whatever purpose it is serving for me. Maybe I needed a bit of shelter from the storm. Maybe, I just needed to rest my fatigued arms and legs. Maybe, I need to feed myself, and close my eyes for some sleep.

Whatever I need from this cave, I know, I trust, that all will be well, and that I will find what I need in this space.

The next day, after being refreshed and taken care of, I continue on, ever closer to the summit, so that I can repel down the other side, and go to the next mountain on my path.

There are days, not all that many, but some, when I am in need of a place, a place to gather my energy, to reflect, to feed my mind, my body, and my soul.

Even when I feel so full of energy that I could almost go on without rest forever, I know that I need to always to do this. I will always need to care for myself in the midst of greatness. I will always need to rest even when I feel like my energy level is high.

In this process of life exploration, in this adventure that I am currently on and living, I know that my climb up and toward my dreams is never ending. I am enjoying it so much. However, I have had to find those caves on my way, and after making peace with the space, the WHY I am there, I have used the space. The space to learn more about the whys and hows of me; the origins of my thoughts, behaviors and feelings; how so much of what I have learned is still part of my identity, until I actively understand it and let it go.

Me, who has always been afraid of dark caves, now understands that in order to adventure on, I always need to rest and refresh.

I never know just what I might find in that space.

My reflection

Okay, I am leaning over, looking into the pond of my life. I am seeking what it is I truly see in that reflection, in that face that is looking back at me.

I see beauty, at least some of the time.

I see honesty.

I see love, pure love.

I see child like soul.

I see an insecure being.

I see a person who is afraid at times.

I see a person who wonders if she will be truly cared for.

I see a fat person inside a slimmer body.

I see a forty seven year old woman who doesn’t look forty seven.

I see life.

I see hope.

I see a past, present, and future.

What about my core values of love, of truth?

I see both. I see love as pure as anything else, flying right out from my soul, and shining like moonbeams from my eyes. I see it as clear as if it was an actual image before me.

I see love in my smile, that has lines and sincerity and purity in it. It is lines that are there for love given and not received, received and not understood, and reciprocated.

I see truth; truth of what is to come, truth of what I only know, truth of my soul and all of its desires.

Love.

Truth.

Life.

Being, and being here, right now.

I am looking deeper into myself than I have ever have before.

My dear readers, I am so grateful for all of you that come, read, some comment, some do it anonymously.

However, I must confess something.

Although I have written here on this blog about my beliefs regarding life, love, beauty, lessons, and experience, about living in the moment, I am but a human, and these are lessons that I am still having to learn.

Inside this secure exterior, is at times, a very insecure, child like person.

A person with a need to be loved, and not forgotten.

I am no guru, or expert. Heck, I am not even a life coach yet.

However, I WILL be. Bank on it.

I just want to tell you all that I am unique, and I do see my own beauty, love and truth at times.

And, I am also insecure, scared, and uncertain at times.

I have often defined myself by how I see myself reflected through others, through the waters within their souls, and how they show it back to me. That is in part, my truth, but it is also, a mirage.

And, I am still finding out who I truly am. Maybe, for the first REAL time in my life.

So far, so good.

Thank you, from my soul depth. For all of it.

Life is worth capturing!

To my friend, J. Thank you for inspiring this post.

I thoroughly love the movie, “Elizabethtown”. There are many aspects to the movie, which is about a young man whose father dies suddenly, and he goes back to his father’s hometown to make the arrangements. It is about so many other things in addition to that, but there is one part of it that struck me the many times that I have watched it. There is a character who is a stewardess, who befriends this young man ad he is travelling to his father’s hometown. She is quirky, and energetic, and full of love for life.

There is this thing that she does, when she wants to capture a moment in her daily life; she holds her hands up, like she is holding a camera, and clicks a shot. Capturing life as it is happening.

I like to think that I do this on a daily basis, as many times a day as I possibly can. Sometimes, I capture those moments on film, or digitally, to recall later on through prints or sharing on the web. Sometimes I share those photos with others to recollect them to those that I love.

Other times, I hold my two hands up, as if I am taking a photo, and click the shutter to capture the moment. I actually make that clicking sound at those times as well, to imprint upon my memory whatever is happening at the time. Talk about love and truth in action!

Sometimes, this active participation in capturing the moments of my life help me to remember to stay focused on the right here and right now. To be ever present. To just BE.

Those moments are varied in their content; some are happy, joyful and full of positivity. Other ones of them are dramatic, full of angst, sadness or pressure. All of them are worth capturing. All of them.

So J, thank you for your wise words on this day, intended or not. For Life, indeed, is worth capturing, every day, all of the time.

So, make sure that you have your camera, real or created, with you at all times……..