Monthly Archives: January 2014

Eye on the Sky.

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I have a 27 mile commute to and from work each day. It is all highway driving, and it goes from Scranton to the Pocono Mountains. It is a breathtaking view, and most days, I get quite a show in the sky. The view to and from work is always a good way for me to practice staying in the moment, because it is so beautiful, and there is so much to see.

Yesterday was no exception. I was fully present, and looked to my left in the beautifully unique sky. I actually saw mint green in the sky, among the clouds gathering for sunset. It was incredible. And, when I looked back 30 seconds later, it had faded a bit. When I looked a minute later, it was gone.

This experience was a beautiful reminder to my current life lesson, that being, living in the present moment. I have been remembering more frequently to just be in this moment, right now, without worry about five minutes from now, or regret from yesterday. Being able to give myself that gift, complete presence in my life, allows me to really pay attention to what is going on right now, or who I am with in this moment, and really take it in.

Yesterday while I went through my day, I found it easier than usual to stay in the present moment. Whether I was talking to a provider about my work; working out with my buddies in the office; or looking up a topic I was interested in, I found myself immersed in the experience and learning from it as a result.

As I drove home last night, I realized that staying in the moment is easy for me when I am watching a beautiful sunrise or sunset; spending time with my love and my daughter; visiting my family; or doing something fun that I really enjoy. Staying in the moment is a bigger challenge for me when it is an experience that feels more difficult, whether that is sadness, grief or worry. Even in those times, staying in the moment is key. To fully be in whatever I am experiencing, I get to learn so much about myself, and the experience itself. I get to FEEL, every bit of what is happening. It reminds me how alive I am in this world and awake for my life.

Each day, I keep learning about how I can really get as much joy as possible from the moments in it. And, yesterday was a reminder for me that every moment counts, no matter what is in it.

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Naked.

This has been an interesting week for me. I have been shifting in a more profound way, my thought process of health and well being away from the scale, and every bite I put into my mouth, and focusing more on overall health, well being, and self love. SELF LOVE. That can be a hard pill to swallow, a hard behavior to make a habit. The motivation has to be there, and over various times of my life, it has been extremely difficult to truly love myself.

This week, while in a mindset of my body being the equivalent of what number appears on the scale, I looked in the full length mirror one day with no clothes on. What I saw in that mirror was fat, all stomach and thighs. It was frightening, because I really saw myself that way, even if it wasn’t the true story. When I walked to the mirror that day, I knew before I looked what I wanted to see. I wanted to see a woman who was a disappointment to herself; who was always going to be ten pounds heavier than the ideal; who would never look like other women who are fit and healthy. I didn’t want to love myself in that moment.

Today, when I woke up, I felt so rested, and happy, and full of joy and peace. I had an amazing breakfast, coffee, some walking, and I have an amazing day planned. I felt in love, with my life and with me. I felt it, deeply this morning. That I am terrific, that love abounds within and from me, and that I am perfect just as I am in any given moment. And, on my way to the shower, I didn’t take a passing glance at my full length mirror. I looked, deeply, with eyes full of love and amazement.

And guess what? I saw beauty, flaws, curves and strength. I saw every bit of me and felt so at peace, so magical, so full of possibility and awe. I saw my uniqueness and stunning beauty in that moment. All because I saw myself with love, true love.

It can be so difficult to be in this world as our naked selves, vulnerable and exposed. Myself, and most of the people that I know, spend our lives covered up with as many layers as possible, to not show who we really are to the world. I understand that this is not just because we are afraid that others will judge, reject, or ridicule us. The biggest reason is that we don’t love ourselves, and in many cases, we actually despise who we are, even when we aren’t looking at our reflections. Our reasons are lack of perfection, not the same as someone else, or we are too strange or unique to let show.

The raw truth of it all, is that I don’t want to be covered up anymore. I don’t want to be under layers of mystique and camouflage. I want to be me, all of me. And, I want to keep loving me as deeply as possible. I want to show the world what I know in these moments of certainty what lies within, and in that way, offer my gifts to those around me.

Naked, vulnerable, real, and free. ME.

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Gripped.

I spent much of my day today feeling afraid. Living in the fears of not being enough, to fail at something, to not be perfect in some unrealistic way (like there is an REALISTIC way to be perfect). I had lots of thought running through my head for my first few morning hours. The thoughts ranged from how I could boost my workouts each week so that I would lose weight more quickly, because my loss this morning wasn’t big enough, to how can I find out how my daughter wants me to cut my hair, so I don’t embarrass her? I tell you, when I amp it up, I REALLY like to amp it up.

I was completely gripped. I felt gripped by the number on the scale; gripped by my thoughts; gripped by my daughter not talking much all week; gripped by all of the sadness and sickness in the world. At first thought, I believed that what gripped me was the world pulling me into its drama and seriousness.

The truth is, I was gripped, all on my own. I was gripping on so tight, that I was strangling my true self. I had a visual picture all day, of my own hands around the front of my throat, squeezing. Completely gripped.

What I grip onto the most in the world is fear. However, fear doesn’t just show itself to me as, “I’m afraid”. Fear shows itself by me getting aggravated with a teenager who doesn’t talk much; but the real fear is that something bad will happen to her because I didn’t pay close enough attention. Fear shows itself to me by my obsession with my weight, body, and workouts; but the real fear is that I will never really love myself when I look in a mirror. Fear is me yelling at the driver who cuts in front of me; when the real fear is that I will be harmed or killed.

The only cure for the grip I put on myself, the only thing that works without fail, is being in the present moment. That can be a real challenge, in light of how fast our lives come at us now, because we are never turned off. We are always connected to something, some device. Being in the moment means really staying present, to what is going on right now. Feel it, whether it feels good or shitty. Tune in, listen to the sounds, take in the sights, appreciate the unique nature of it all, the transient nature of it.

I am gripped less and less often. And, today, I got to remember again, that when I choose the present moment, I choose PEACE.

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Death and Dying.

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For the last few days, I am have been thinking a lot about the process of dying, and death. It has been on my mind in relation to physical health and illness; the aging process; and leaving this world while others live on.

I feel great, and continue to be fully attached to living, so I am hoping that I won’t be leaving this world anytime soon. However, I am becoming more and more invested, and present to the idea, that I am a fragile being, even with being healthy and vital. I am literally a breath, or heartbeat, away from moving to the other side, to death, to transitioning to the next chapter.

We don’t talk about that much in this world. When the subject of death comes up, a reality that will visit us all one day, people get uncomfortable. It feels icky to talk about not being in the world anymore, at least not as a living, breathing human being. As if the very discussion of it will bring something to pass.

The truth is, I have always been scared of death. Scared to talk about it, in relation to myself, or those whom I know and love. Scared to think about not being here as a living being anymore. To be without those whom I love. Scared to think about the actual process of dying, of taking my last breath. Of being in pain or discomfort.

Today, I am more at ease in thinking about death. That has come about for a variety of reasons. First of all, I am aging, as is all of us, but I am acutely aware of my own aging process, and that my loved ones are also aging. Although we could die at any moment, as I get into my older years, I am more aware of it seeming to be closer. I am not sure if I believe in heaven specifically, but another aspect that has put me more at ease, is knowing that death is another chapter in my life; it is like walking into another room of the journey that we are making in this world. Yet another aspect to be experienced.

But the biggest ways in which I have let go of my fear, the last parts of the fear that I have held onto, are related to those that live on, and being in the present moment. I have always been so filled with fear, and upset, to know that after I die, those that love me, that are still living, will suffer miserably with my absence. I have come to a deeper peace, in the knowing that although those that love me will grieve my death, life DOES go on. As it should.

The other part of death that I have made my peace with, is that whether I am 15 or 51, death can come to me at any moment. When I remember that, I am more able to live in the present moment, being in it and cherishing what comes from it. Really, all we have is in this moment, RIGHT NOW. The past or future doesn’t exist, and who knows how long we will really be here. Right now, is perfect and magical.

It reminds me that living fully is not something to make time for someday, but to start in this moment.

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