Tag Archives: belief

Please, help me.

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I have defined myself as a helper for most, if not all of my life. From an early age, I wanted to always help others, and to give them gifts and special things. It isn’t something that I necessarily thought about, it just felt as if it lived in me as part of who I am. This giving and offering applied to my family, friends, and strangers. As I got older, it felt like a longing that meant that I wanted to choose a career in which I could offer myself to others. To me, that meant social work. And, although I have loved what I have done as my career all of these years, I don’t seek so much of myself in it as I used to in the past.  As a social worker, and a counselor, I have come to find it quite normal to always focus on what others need, or how they are not capable of taking care of themselves, and require my assistance. I see humans as much more capable than I used to, so I feel less needed to provide a service, but rather, see in them the ability to help themselves.

 

Another aspect of who I have been in my life, is that I rarely have asked for help for myself. Not only do I offer to do almost everything that may be required in a given situation, I rarely ask for others to actively help me. And, if I am in a bad situation, it is often not my comfort zone to ask someone to assist me. 

 

One area that I find it interesting is in how prayer has been present in my life as I have grown. When I was a child, and even in college, I would enjoy going to church, participating in the structure and tradition of it all, with prayers and song. I loved that I knew the prayers by heart, and would enjoy reciting them in unison with others in the church. I even prayed at night, or various other times, to God, as I knew of it at the time, for help for others. I never, ever asked God for help for myself. To me, to ask God for something that I wanted, or needed, was selfish. Was me asking God to give me something that I should be able to take care of myself. In other words, God was not responsible for my happiness or relief; I was. 

 

Letting go of the belief that I am solely responsible for the happenings of my life, without the need for others to assist, has been a challenge for me. Mostly, in the area of where God, or Spirit, fits into my life. I would rarely remember that God, or Spirit, is always with me, and I am always part of it, and it is there as the purest form of who I Am. And, there to assist, guide, and support. Yet, I am beginning to understand how important that is right now for me. Being able to say to Spirit, please, help me, to see this situation as it is. To let go or surrender. To remember that I am resting always in the Peace of God. That this is just a dream. That the form does not matter. These are the parts of my daily living that feel most challenging, and yet, I still believe that I need to solely rely on myself to remember. 

 

Most recently, with life form situations that have happened in my world, I have remembered with more frequency to call upon Spirit for help, when I am in a moment that does not feel peaceful, yet I am longing for peace. I am aware that I am not choosing Peace, and yet, need some assistance in choosing Peace. That is when Spirit is right there, for me and with me, to hold me up and remind me, gently and lovingly, what Peace feels like, and that I always have help in choosing it. That I am not in ever in this alone; that I am always held by and watched over by Spirit. That all is well. That Peace lives within me. And Forgiveness. And Love. And when I cannot remember to choose them, it is a beautiful comfort to know the help that exists to help me choose.

 

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To Ruthie. With Love.

 

 

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The Woodpecker and the Chipmunk.

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I have been been going through some deep, emotional lessons in my life over the last couple of months. I have, at times, felt powerless, hopeless, and overwhelmed by what has been happening around me. I have taken on the heaviness and volatility of the situations at hand, as if it has everything to do with me. At those times, I always feel compelled to do SOMETHING, because I feel so powerless about the circumstances that are impacting my world, or a loved one. Anything that would assist in relieving my sense of helplessness. I have found myself being angry, judgmental, and feeling like a victim. I have focused on the actions or experiences of others. And, through much of it, I have not always focused on my own needs and what feeds me.

 

What I have come to understand about myself, actually, what I believe to be true about all human beings, is that we cannot truly be there for another person, love them as they are, unless we are first caring for ourselves in a deep, intimate way. Much of the time, that just means for me to remind myself to eat balanced, regular meals; to get good, restful sleep at night;  and making sure I get my body moving. When those are sacrificed by me, in the name of compassion or care for others, I have nothing left to care for them with.  In addition, if I don’t “feed” myself, with the activities and time that I need in my soul, I feel empty.  I feel like I could fall into a hole of self pity and have a hard time crawling out.  

 

So, I have been more diligent.  I write every day, even working on a novel that I have been talking to myself about for years but have been putting off continuing. I have beaten on a drum a bit. Taken some walks around town. And yesterday, when I woke up in a “funk”, feeling deeply raw and emotional, I knew that I had to get into nature. I had to go out into the woods and feel connected. Believe me, there was a part of me that did not want to, that wanted to wallow in some self created misery. But I knew that it was deeply important. So I headed to a trail that I had never been to before. I was on the verge of tears. I wanted to believe how lonely and isolated I felt from others. How hopeless everything was. But, I reminded myself to stay present, open and willing to be with myself.

 

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I am always amazed and inspired by what I notice when I really get present in my world. When I first arrived at the trail, I was distracted. I was in my mind and my incessant thoughts. However, I consciously shifted that; and realized that any circumstance, no matter how difficult it seems to be, brings beautiful lessons to my life. And, that when I see others, and myself, as capable, open and completely perfect, magic happens. When I shifted my awareness, to just be present, I found myself hearing and seeing the most amazing things. The sound of the water nearby running over rocks. The rustle of the leaves under my feet and on the hills along the path. A sound that seemed to be a person hammering, but when I stopped, and gently looked up, it was a woodpecker, looking for insects on a tree. As I looked up, I saw at least two other woodpeckers swooping overhead, easily recognized with their red heads. 

 

The rustling on the hillsides were many chipmunks, scurrying from logs and trees to gather nuts, to chase one another. They are so tiny, so playful and so timid. I love catching them with the corner of my eye as they run by. One of them was sitting on a fallen tree, just looking at me, his cheeks bulging with some treasure. He kept eye contact, and it filled me with peace and wonder. 

 

In that hour of time, I was reminded yet again of the necessity and gift of Presence in my life, of Gratitude and Peace. When I am in my world, present to it, willing to accept all that comes my way, and ready to let go of my own need to control or guide, the beauty of the world pours in. When I trust that I am right where I need to be, I know I need to do nothing. And I find the deepest Peace that I have ever known. 

 

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Taking Others Personally.

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Every couple of months or so, I contemplate de activating my Facebook account.  After spending a good amount of time paying attention to the various kinds of posts there, it feels like it would be self loving to take a break. Just tune out, and tune in to myself instead for a few days, weeks, whatever feels good to me.

 

However, the stuff that seems to impact me the most is not the political, commercial, provocative posts that I see there; I seem pretty immune to them these days, feeling secure in my own positions and opinions, and allowing others to have their own. What seems to impact me the most, as I do the one fingered scroll through on my Iphone, is friends on there.  I see pictures of friends, having fun times with other friends, attending or hosting parties, traveling, and I feel a pang of disappointment.  A feeling of being left out.  I feel like when it comes to friends, I don’t matter to many.

 

Please, read on before you feel sorry for me; this is not to elicit sympathy for myself.  It is a tremendous learning ground for me, and I am grateful.  But at first glance, when I see friends of mine having fun with others, I don’t just think that I am happy for them that they are happy.  I feel left out, left behind.  I don’t take it out on them; I take it out on ME.  What is wrong with ME?  Aren’t I fun enough?  Inspiring enough? Why don’t they call me to go out, to have tea, to come over for a movie?  Why not ME???? I take the entire “exchange” personally.  And, that is the kicker for me; there is no exchange; there is no rejection.  It just is what is.

 

I have been reading the Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz for a couple of years now, over and over again, and one of those agreements is to not take ANYTHING personally. Now, I have put it into action quite successfully and gratefully in my world over and over again, in relationship to my work; my family; and various friends. But then, I always get another opportunity to try the lesson on for size again, just to seal the deal. So, this is another time for that.  

 

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I certainly do not feel one bit peaceful when I take others personally.  I feel frustrated, confused, rejected, sad, and angry. I feel like I am not enough in some way, shape or form. I feel like I want to be seen and acknowledged and it just isn’t happening in the way that I would like. I take an image from a social media outlet and think that means I know all that there is to a story. Because that is all it ever is, really.  Just a story.  Just a story that I tell myself and then come to believe as the truth.  

 

The thing is, I always get to decide how I want to believe things to be.  And, the lessons that I get to learn in all of this, are vital and substantial for my expansion and evolution. I am learning deeply about letting go; letting things and people be just as they are. When I do that, I accept more and judge less. Another lesson that I get to learn is that NOTHING in this world, not one thing, that is going on with another person, ever has anything to do with me.  Even when it does, it doesn’t. This one of the four agreements is the one that I struggle with the most, yet gives me the most peace within when I ascribe to it.

 

And ultimately, that is the real win for me, is to come back to a place of Peace, always and as often as possible.  When I am feeling peaceful, I am amazed that I could ever want to choose something other than Peace. Yet I do, day after day after day.  And, then, gratefully, I get to remember, day after day after day, that Peace is the choice that I prefer, and it is always available to me.  That I can pick it up, and hold it closely, as often and consistently as I desire.  That I am beautiful, bright, of value and worth.  That I am full of Love, Light, and Purpose. That all those that are meant to come in and out of my world are nothing short of blessings, and that I get to honor them as such, without putting limits, rules and expectations upon them.  I get to let them be their beautiful selves, and celebrate the Self that I am in every moment.

 

I am forever grateful to be able to keep growing, learning, and Being in the brightest, most brilliant way that I can imagine to Be.

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Saying No.

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So, I have been contemplating a new job for the last few weeks. I was approached about an opening within our company, to do something pretty different than what I am doing now. It sounded exciting, intriguing, and like I could make a difference in this new position. It would be working in schools, helping young people to help themselves. I had been thinking recently of how much I enjoy spending time with my daughter and her friends, and it seemed like a logical transition.

I was called up for three separate interviews over the last three weeks. I felt like I had a great chance to be hired for it. I was thinking about the changes that would come, welcome changes for me. I had been feeling discouraged and not fulfilled by my current job. It seemed like just the right combination of factors for me to have a good, solid change in my life. A job that could see us through to the next phase of our lives in a couple of years.

Now, as you all may remember if you read me here on a regular basis, I am often advising and believing that we should say Yes in our lives whenever possible. My thinking in regard to this has often been that if we say no to many things in our lives, we disconnect from opportunities and ways to engage in life, to take a risk and even have some fun. Say Yes, I would say. And, that still holds true.

However, with this job, I thought about it a bit differently. At first, I was sure that this was an opportunity that was not to be missed. I felt flattered that I was so highly recommended; I felt encouraged that they had met with me three times, which led me to believe I was still in the running. Yet, something about it continued to nag at me a bit.

This new job meant travel, and while I love to travel for my job, this one had potential to be A LOT of travel, overnights frequently. And, that is where I had a flicker of doubt. You see, I have spent the last few years really building a LIFE for myself. With my daughter, I have been diligent about opening up communication and being available to her. Watching her grow and fly on her own. In love, I have said yes to all of it, and that means, meals together, early morning meditations, and everything in between. I love my life, right now, just as it is.

Yes, I have been feeling a bit discouraged and done with my current position. But, that isn’t about my workplace, or job duties, or hours. It is all about ME, and my attitude about my work. My aspirations for something different. My itchiness for the next, big thing. This job was to be an easy out.

SO, I said NO, firmly and honestly. I said no to this job, and yes to my family and my evening meals with my love. I said no to this job, and yes to my current job, my work friends, and an environment that I can count on and feel good about. I want to stay in the comfort and warmth of what I have now, and feels so good.

I said no to this job, and yes to the warm embrace and waiting arms of full, unbridled love. And that not only brings love into my life, but a deep sense of peace as well.

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Being Afraid.

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I got a call from my doctor’s office last week, an unexpected call. They were trying to reach me about some test results. Immediately, even before I spoke with the office, I was filled with complete terror.

I became immediately and desperately afraid of dying.

Now, there was nothing indicating that my death was imminent, mind you. However, I put my faith and trust in what they were telling me as the full story, and that I had to stop what I was doing, pay attention, and do whatever it is that they told me to do, if I wanted to survive and be healthy.

I have been involved with the Western tradition of medical care for most of my adult life, and have agreed to and asked for testing and diagnostic screenings of every kind. In those various tests, issues and concerns have been discovered that might not otherwise have been known about. For that, I am grateful.

However, I also took this opportunity, this most recent time of diagnostic fear, to really look at it and think about what it is that grips me so. It isn’t the idea of being ill: if for some reason, I were to be facing a major health challenge at this point in my life, I feel completely confident that I could fix whatever was ill, and live a long life. I have faith in my own ability to be well, and that I would use whatever means were at my disposal to do so, Eastern and Western alike.

No, it was deeper than that. What gripped me that day of the phone call from my doctor was the fear of the unknown, and more specifically, the fear of death. In my wildest imaginings at that point, I feared dying right now at this point in my life. My life is full, and happy and healthy and full of love. I enjoy being in this body, and being in this world, even if it might be an illusion or a dream. I love living this dream right now. I don’t feel ready or willing to go to what comes next, even if it is more brilliant than I could ever imagine.

That was what being afraid represented to me that day. Yet, what was so calming and amazing to me, is that the fear was short lived. I felt gripped, and powerless and small, and then, I found my deep sense of peace. No matter what happens, no matter what my body has in store for me, or doesn’t, I will be well. As long as I can always come back to a place of peace, no matter what is going on in my outside, or inside world, then all will be well.

No matter what, I can always choose peace.

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