Staying Plugged In, Part I

The intention of this blog entry was meant to serve as a reflection of the first two months of the year however, the last 7 days and particularly today have been one of those moments when I’ve received what feels like a lifetime of knowledge, so much so that in this moment I couldn’t care less to learn anything else until this time next year. With no uncertainty a whirlwind of change is in my future.

The moment in which you realize your prayers have truly been answered can be one filled with both fear and gratitude. Truth suddenly appears and it doesn’t look like you pictured but you understand and accept it for it is. My focus this year has been on staying plugged in and continuing to learn and grow. Day after day, plagued with fatigue and in relentless pursuit to experience the fullness of my journey fear is ever present. I am fearful because truth shows that I have not learned a few lessons which I thought I overcame. What I thought was the light at the end of the tunnel was just an illusion, my ego saying “girl you’ve got this under control”.  Change or the onset of change almost always opens the door to fear.  Not knowing the outcome of a situation or the minute details of “how” leaves few choices.  You can either feel the fear and move forward, or allow fear to cripple you. Right now fear is showing up for me as anxiety, sleepless nights and at times anger.

I am also grateful because if it wasn’t for my focus, my commitment to using the resources available to me and to remaining faithful to spiritual practices, I could very well crumble.  The truth of the matter is, I have been praying for this moment.  I have surrendered all, my fears, desires and will.  I’ve been praying for renewal, to be used for my true purpose as guided by my creator at any cost. In a sense I’ve prayed for a true test of my faith, even though I know it means my world will be turned upside down.

The week began with a dharma talk on “No birth, no death” and discussion on “Loving your challenges”. There was discussion on spirit and if spirit lives forever. There were various opinions for consideration. Opinions from those who were simply curious and unable to articulate a solid response or belief, there were naysayers, and even a scientific perspective. The room was filled with wonder and eyes were glued on the Reverend as he responded to the many questions in the room. What I’ve learned to appreciate from attending these sessions is that the Reverend and or guest speaker never provide a clear “yes” or “no” response. The knowledge and teachings shared are purposeful and designed to meet you as the student where you are leaving it open for interpretation at your level or free to quench your thirst with additional exploration of the subject matter. In the midst of this discussion I had found comfort in my belief of no birth, no death of spirit when thinking of my grandmother. Although she is not here in form, I often ask for her guidance, courage, wisdom and spirit on a spiritual plane.

The very next morning, I found myself face to face with the lesson I thought I had learned. I had two choices, I could either love the challenge it presented or I could fall apart. I chose the former, and while semantically I do not “love” this current situation that has crossed my path, I do accept what it represents. There is still something for me to learn and although this experience is not pleasant for me and is creating anxiety, I know for certain that whatever the outcome I’m going to be just fine. There is something better for me on the other side of this journey but I must move through this situation to get to the glory! Any resistance on my part will only make matters worse. This experience is happening FOR me, not TO me.

To be continued…

A Letter to My Father

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I love this photo of us.  It takes me back to a time when life was easy and carefree and I felt like the luckiest little girl in the world.  I cherish this picture because it serves as reminder of all the great memories I have of you.  I think of you often and sometimes with regret.  When I got the call that you passed away, it was in that moment that I realized I couldn’t remember the last time I saw you face to face, nor the last words that I spoke to you.  What I do remember is that there was tension in our last phone conversation and many unanswered questions. That was about 22 years ago.

I must admit that I did not spend a large part of my life trying to understand your choices.  I was too young at the time to understand the complexities of life and relationships between a man and a woman but as a young child when I saw my mother often frustrated and angry as a result of your choices,  I took her side. My heart ached trying to figure out how you could be so easily led astray and I took your actions all too personally.   Weren’t we enough of a reason to leave the alcohol, streets and women alone?   How could anything be more important than us? As a result, I armored myself  with an “If you don’t care enough then I don’t care enough either” attitude.  Little did I know the undertone of this experience would live, grow and fester inside me. It has shown up in various areas of my life.  Whenever I’ve felt betrayed or disrespected by a friend and it most certainly has shown up in my relationships with men.  While I was busy showing many “I didn’t care about them either” I also was neglecting “not caring” about myself. And I was too blinded by ego to see it.  I’ve faced some hard truths about myself in my desire to achieve success in the one area of my life that proves to difficult.  Relationships. I have wasted much time trying to prove my worthiness to men.  I have accepted scraps of attention and time from men, I’ve stuck by their sides forgivingly, when I should have walked away.  All the while convincing myself that if I could make “this one” work despite the obvious signs, my worth be recognized.  Because I could not see my worth, I was looking for it in my various career choices, in my friendships and in my relationships. In my mind I knew better, but at my core I needed to be healed.

My path to healing has been ripe with hard lessons, self-reflection, awareness, gratitude, and love.  It wasn’t until I claimed my baggage which I carried with me everywhere, that I was able to release it. I have since learned to forgive myself and I’ve come to forgive you.  I’ll never know the weight of your burdens and fears but as an adult I now understand that you did the best you knew how to do.  Life does not come with a manual and our experiences are here to show us ourselves, good and bad so that we can live fully and in truth.  It is not for me or anyone to judge you or your actions. My unconscious behavior is no different from yours or anyone else’s for that matter.  The common thread of fear of inadequacy runs through all of us.  I now understand it had nothing to do with me. At 44 I know without question my value and my worth and as a result I am responsible and accountable for the energy I bring to life experiences.  Although I am still single, it is because I know what I will and will not allow in my life.  I am guided by my intuition. I forgive without giving up my truth. There is nothing to prove.  Life happens for us to nurture and promote our spiritual development.

And so, on what would have been your 66th birthday, it is my hope that these words touch your spirit.  Two years ago today mom and I traveled to St. Croix to release Grandma Sheila’s ashes into the ocean and once released the clouds dissipated and the light from the sun confirmed that her spirit was free.  We were able to see your sister Karen and celebrate both your life and my grandmother’s life. For me this day is about letting go of the things that are holding me back from living my best life. I pray that wherever you are in the world, that your life is abundant. I pray that you have found your way. I pray that you are sharing your light.  Know that I love you and know that I always knew your love for me and despite the past, I am grateful to have known you on this journey called life.