Friday, May 17, 2013

The Thrill of Spring

This time of year always reminds me of my dad. 

Not only was he the master gardener in my life growing up but he was the only person I knew who could pick out asparagus growing on the side of the road from the drivers seat of his Dodge pick up going 80km/hour!

Today I found myself (as I quite often do this time of year) trying to pick out the bulky stalks myself.  I've never been able to see it before it grows tall and goes to seed.  My response to finding it too late is always 'shit!'; knowing full well I will have to wait a full year to try again.  I feel like it would be a triumph of sorts if I did; like somehow my dad would be watching me and saying 'that's my girl'. 

As I drove down back country roads today I remembered his green handled paring knife that he kept in the glove box of his truck for just the right moment when he'd land some asparagus in his sights.  He barely had that truck stopped and in park before he was out of the drivers seat and into the ditch bank chopping down what he could of the green gold.

It was like a sport to him.

Every piece of asparagus the gold medal.

Actually I never really remember a destination on those country road drives.  Maybe we were just on the hunt for asparagus.  I do remember the windows rolled down, the breeze in my face and the sound of his knee smacking country music blaring from his truck speakers; Willie Nelson maybe or Stompin' Tom Connors.  He would sing and whoop and hollar like he was on top of the world.

I think spring was my dads favourite season.  It's when he'd get his garden growing (maybe the biggest garden in town at the time; definitely the biggest crop of rhubarb!).  He'd spend hours digging and hoeing and watering that garden, all summer long; beer(s) in hand.  It was his baby; his pride and joy.

It's when I'm in my own veggie gardens; planning and digging in the dirt that I feel the closest to the spirit of my father.

That's the real thrill of spring for me.


Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Humbled Beyond Words

I was fortunate enough to be invited to speak at a local high school today.

The topic?  The power of your thoughts on yourself, others and the world.

The information shared never gets old for me; maybe it's because I am in front of a new group of people each time or maybe because I am reminded again and again of the personal power that we each possess to create a better life and a better world to live in.

As I stood in front of each class today I was humbled beyond words to be standing in front of them.

Their 'beingness' reached into my heart and whispered "we are somebody". 


I was honoured to be standing in front of our future government officials, doctors, lawyers, teachers, parents, etc.  These young adults are our future.  They deserve our undivided attention.  They deserve to be given the tools they are going to need to walk confidently into their futures.

To be chosen; to be invited into their learning environment to provide them with a piece of the puzzle was a great gift to me.  Even if that piece of the puzzle starts off like so many great things do; as a tiny seed that was implanted into their hearts and minds.  That's enough for me.


Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Love As Best You Can

This week I am in Ottawa with hubby.

I've been roaming the city while he's been stuck enjoying a water treatment convention.

This morning I was privileged enough to spend time chatting over tea with a beautiful cousin that I haven't seen in thirteen years (where does time go anyway?).  It was so nice to be in her presence, to hear a bit of her story and to laugh with eachother.

As I was heading to the park with my lunch after my morning tea visit I came upon a family that made me smile. 

Dad was pushing the stroller, Mom was helping lift the front portion up the stairs we were climbing; grandma and big sister were walking a few steps ahead.  As I approached them I heard that Mom and Dad were having a argument discussion about how they were going about this task; who was doing what and who needed to do that what better.  I got up a little further and heard big sister (who was about 3 years old) say 'only two more steps to go mom and dad'. 

Oh her sweet little voice.  Brightly reassuring them both that they would only have to endure the drama of getting the stroller up the stairs for only a few more seconds. 

In that moment I wanted to give her a big hug. 

I wondered if mom and dad heard her or if they were too busy inside of their own story to take in what was being offered.  I know as an adult who has been there and done that, that the stairs weren't the issue.  The pain and reason for the bickering has roots far deeper than the moment they were in.  And still I wanted to turn to them and say 'Love eachother as best you can'.  I wanted them to hear their daughters message that she so desperately wants for them to get along and see that obstacles truly are temporary. 

This little girl is like the wise guru on the mountain top; she has the miracle cure to what ails them in her flower lined pocket.

This little peace keeper.  I wanted to enlist her on my 'team' of love warriors.

She was gone out of my experience just as quickly as she came; but that doesn't mean her message has left my heart.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Prayer Cleanse

Spring is here and it seems everywhere you look people are in the mood for cleansing.

I myself could use a good detoxification right about now AND that realization got me thinking that it may be that my prayer practice could use a good detox.  I've gotten a little whiney with my prayers lately; so I think it's high time I did something about that.

So, I'm going on a prayer cleanse.

For the next thirty days the only prayer I will be offering up to the Big Guy is 'Thank You'.

This idea makes my stomach flutter.  Can I do it?  Will I have the will power to get through the next 30 days? 

I sure hope so.

Because there is nothing like 30 days of gratitude to get the life pipes cleaned out.


Sunday, May 5, 2013

The Whisper Of Our Truest Self

Every once in a while I find myself in a frenzy of needing to 'find' myself.  As if somehow when I wasn't looking my 'self' went missing and left me with a gaping hole of nothingness.  In this realization I start to panic instantly. 

Oh my God!  Where am I?  What am I?  I need to do something....  Don't I?  I need to find myself so I can do the something I am meant to do and then I will be happy and free and I will be so happy and free that my 'self' won't go missing again!!!!

I begin to push myself into the mold of who I believe I should be and what would be acceptable to the rest of the world.  I push myself into expectations that I don't fit into.  The happiness and freedom that I experience in this space is fleeting.  It's here one day and gone the next.  And like any good junkie I push forward looking for my next 'fix'.

This behaviour.  This unconscious behaviour keeps me living in a cycle where my only purpose is avoiding the emptiness; avoiding the nothingness that I know lives inside of me and no matter how hard I try I cannot escape it.

How do you escape nothingness if it is a part of you?  And if it's a part of you is it something you are supposed to escape or is it something you can embrace and love?

In a world that says 'keep moving forward', 'push past the pain', 'success is what you are here for'; it is difficult to consciously embrace the nothingness.  We aren't taught that there is a place inside of us that holds the secret to life.  We aren't taught that boredom is good.  We aren't taught to embrace the moments where we fear if it were our last we would have accomplished nothing in this lifetime and would have ultimately failed as a human being.

We are taught that if you feel 'down' and 'depressed' then you need medication.  We are taught that if you have no drive in life it must be the fault of someone or something not making you happy and you must find out what that is or at the very best begin to blame everything around you in an attempt to claw your way out of the nothingness.

Here is my observation today.  This nothingness that lives within us, in which we are a large part of.  I believe that it aches to be a present force in our life.  I believe that it is with the embracing of the nothingness that our truth lies and our unbounding ability to love resides.  I believe that we will never ever escape the hamster wheel we call life and all of it's materialistic trappings if we don't give our nothingness a few minutes of our time when we find ourselves connected with it. 

That connection isn't a mistake and it's not a chance happening.  It's the whisper of our truest self asking us to be courageous enough to play where there is nothing but space.  And in that space we are whole.....again.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

The Power Of Words

A couple of nights ago I was doing some reflecting and writing in my journal.  In a moment of pure self loathing I wrote that I was feeling particularly useless and that my life had no meaning...

The next morning I woke up feeling pretty good.  I got Ben out of bed and ran down to the shower to get ready for my jam packed day.  As I was heading from the bathroom into the bedroom I stooped down to pet the dog and step over her at the same time and in that moment something in my back snapped and I felt like I was going to pass out.

I immediately sat myself down on the floor in what seemed the only position my body could handle without inducing more pain.

There I was; stuck on the floor, totally naked.  Totally useless.

I could hear the Universe laughing as I tried to figure out a way to get up and carry on with my day even though the pain in my lower back had begun to radiate down my legs.  Just how was I going to drive myself from client to client?  Just how was I going to facilitate the mom and tot breathing session?

In that moment I realized exactly what I had done.  I realized the power of my words.

Writing the words 'I feel so useless' was a prayer.  In fact, every time we write, say or think anything it is a prayer.  It is a request for an experience.  In this instance, I had prayed for the experience of being useless.  Since I thought I already was, then it seemed appropriate to have the experience of it.

So here I am my back still in pain.  I'm sure anyone who has had back pain knows how restricted you are.  The things I normally do without thinking; without appreciation for the muscles in my body and how they all have to be strong and work together to make things happen are now things I am having great struggle to accomplish.

And at the same time I have to laugh.  I have to love this experience because I called it into being with my prayer.

I must in this moment realize that even as I sit here unable to easily do what it is I want to do I am still very powerful, very much useful because it is my thoughts that create.  It is the words that I speak and think and write that are the words that will create my life experience.

My actions are my prayers in motion.  Ultimately, though it is my prayers that matter.

What are your prayers?  What are your words that you have been speaking lately?  Are they something you want to experience?