Friday, July 30, 2010

Fire in My Belly

My belly has a fire. It's small, but it is building. It creeps up through my ribs and dares to grace my heart. It grows. With each word I type, with each phrase that passes my lips, I fan the flame. This blaze will not be tamed. It longs to burst forth and meet the world!

There is however, one enemy of the fire. It threatens to douse the light and silence me. It fills my ears with doubt and thoughts of failure. It is fear.

Everyday I meet with fear. And everyday I sit with it. I stare this fear deep in its own eyes and I dare it to defy me. Some days it wins and I retreat. I fold in on myself and walk away. Other days I roar. I laugh in its face and continue on my merry way without so much as a backward glance. My mission is to fill my life with more days like the latter and to move evermore from fear to love.

Through the fear I learn. Through the fear I grow. I sit in silence and greet each day anew. What is being brought to me today? Will Love win out yet again or will it be another notch in the belt of Fear? And what I know for sure is that underneath that which frightens us, is the potential for unyielding, compassionate love. Underneath the notions of failure and humiliation are the memories of triumph and grace. When I can align myself with this remembrance, I can move through the fear and tend to the fire in my belly. My heart is open. My pen is ready. There is no stopping me. I will be heard.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Loving Forgiv~ing!

So I am re-visiting the steps laid out by Gabrielle Bernstein in her book “Add More ~ing” to Your Life. The book is laid out BRILLIANTLY in my opinion. I’ve heard Gabby say that you’ve got to “Clear up the crazy” before you can really begin to manifest your hopes and desires. In fact the chapter entitled “Manifest~ing” does not appear until near the end of the book. This is because we hold a lot of negative ideas and resentments which are not in alignment with who we really are. These feelings keep us back from attaining the life we truly want because they are attached to fear. It is not until we can begin to align ourselves with love and compassion that the content of our authentic dreams becomes clear.

The first two chapters of the book are the most important to me: Feel~ing and Forgiv~ing. I needed to look at my thoughts. I needed to examine how I saw the people and events in my life and how it all made me feel. Realizing that I held a lot of anger, guilt and resentment about so many aspects of my life kind of shocked me. I thought I was a pretty easy-going, laid-back woman. To actually monitor my thoughts and feelings painted a totally different picture. I often had thoughts like: “That’s not fair.” “Why me?” “What an idiot!” etc. I had to laugh at myself. I had been just a little bit delusional. Through 30 days of looking at and sitting with my feelings I learned a lot about myself and what could trigger sadness, anger, guilt, resentment. I began to feel so much compassion for myself. I knew it was ok to feel this way, but also knew that I didn’t want to anymore. And so the only way to truly move past this negativity was to forgive.

I forgive you. Even just saying the words helps me breathe a little easier. I feel lighter just considering forgiving someone. So I set out to revisit forgiving this coming month. I have made a mental list of who I should offer absolution and am shocked at how many people there are! Keep in mind I had done this before and since! I think though, that I have been forgiving the obvious….parents, husband, in-laws, children, myself. So now what about a boss from 10 years ago? A particularly rude sales clerk from when I was 12? It’s all important and every person, as they are each my brother or sister, deserves to be forgiven. And I deserve to be released from the bitterness I have been feeling for far too long.

I look forward to it. I am loving forgiv~ing. With each act of forgiveness I become unburdened. I stand up straighter, shoulders back, looking ahead with love. This work will never stop and that’s ok. It gets easier.

To buy Gabrielle's Book, click here.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

With Thanks For All

Only recently have I come to terms with everything that has happened in my life. All of it. I am able to paint my past with a broad brush of gratitude now. All of it. It's all me and I attracted it all. While I do not have the space here to recount every little thing that has occurred in my past 31 years, there is one specific incident that I will share to illustrate my point.

The Lawsuit.

Two and a half years ago my family was sued by a multi-billion dollar corporation. My parents had built a business that began in our basement. They slowly grew this into a medium-sized distribution company that did quite well and were leaders in their field. In 2005, they were approached by a large company to be purchased and after 18 months of negotiations it was a done deal.

This was however, a family company and so aside from my parents & my uncle (the owners), my husband, my brother and 2 close friends worked there. Because of the personal nature of the company, the transition was a difficult one. There was a lot of bitterness from my family about how their company was being handled and the direction it was being taken.
This bitterness festered. We talked about the takeover constantly. We complained. We lamented. Eventually my husband and brother could take it no more and decided to start their own company in a similar field. Just before they resigned however, their plans were discovered.

No Mercy.

Three days later my parents, my uncle, my brother and my husband were slapped with a multi-million dollar lawsuit. At first we laughed it off. Very quickly however that laughter faded into unabated fear. My husband and I were still catching up financially and now we were pregnant with our second child. How would we cope? How could we possibly keep up?
This frenzy of fear and blame continued for months and darkened every corner of our lives. These legal things move so slowly and are riddled with deception, manipulation and negativity. We lived in that pit and drank of that poison for one full year.

The Light.

On February 5th, 2009 a light was turned on. My husband and I watched a movie called "The Secret" which focuses on the power of the Law of Attraction. The purpose of this post is not to promote this movie (though, for us, it was a lifesaver), but merely to illustrate how the depths of helplessness can bring on the loving light of day. We had effectively surrendered the situation at this point and watching this movie brought sweet clarity. We had attracted this lawsuit. With our griping, negativity and our severe attachment to the company that was, we had brought on a maelstrom of madness. In essence we received from the Universe what we were giving to the Universe.

This shifted, for us, the course of the next few months because our thoughts and feelings shifted. We became so utterly grateful for what we had. We stopped blaming. We opened ourselves up to possibilities. We surrendered the outcome of the lawsuit altogether.

The Outcome.

In November of 2009 the lawsuit was settled. It had been behind us in our minds for months, but now it was all official.
I could be typing this post right now with an air of acridity and defiance, but I do not. I type with love and gratitude. That event shocked us to our cores and led us to the light. That event woke us up. I often pray for the people who were involved in the lawsuit...people from both sides. It was an occurrence that I know my family will not soon forget.
I know how the world works now. I see the part I play. I awake each morning and thank God for this life. I ask how I can be of service. I walk through my life now with awareness and awe of God's grace. We are blessed; we are guided and we give thanks for it all.


Wednesday, July 7, 2010

All Whom You Encounter

"When you meet anyone, remember it is a holy encounter. As you see him, you will see yourself. As you treat him, you will treat yourself. As you think of him, you will think of yourself. Never forget this, for in him you will find yourself or lose sight of yourself." ~ A Course in Miracles

We know when we're being ignored. Conversely, we know when someone sees us...I mean really sees us. A person looks into our eyes down through vessels and veins straight into the heart of who we are. This is a holy encounter indeed. To me, when this happens it is merely a reminder that you can have this connection with anyone at anytime. It is just dependant on the openness of your hearts...on your willingness to see how everyone lives in you and you in them.

There are people who are incredibly attractive and those whose presence we avoid like the Plague. This is not necessarily reflective, however, of how they have always been. The potential for pure love and light lives in all of us. We are all merely at varying degrees of that consciousness of Love.

Is it easier with people who look like us? I see you in me because I really do see someone who looks like me? My daughter will often mimic me and I am reminded of how I look or how I sound. It helps me to remember when she upsets me that we are connected and that I have an infinite capacity for compassion where she is concerned. It also brings me to the realization that I have this compassion for everyone. I need only practice it.

Often more than words, a silent "I see you." is enough. A knowing nod...a loving smile...this is so frequently all that is needed. This is where our souls speak. This is where our higher selves embrace and remember one another. The challenge is then, can you see all whom you greet? Can you treat every encounter as a Holy Encounter? Can you wrap each person up in love with nothing but a meeting of the eyes? Of course you can. We all can. We all must. Our world depends upon it. So will you?

Friday, July 2, 2010

Feeling and Allowing

Throughout much of my life, the feelings that brought me down were the same: guilt, shame, resentment, sadness. On the other side of that, the feelings that raised me up were: love, acceptance, compassion and understanding. The challenge was then, to find the common thread. What made these feelings show up? I was so accustomed to feeling an emotion and then time for analysis done at all. I felt what I felt so there! Everyone, including me, was a victim of my emotions.

It wasn't until I sat with it...until I let the emotion wash over me, that I was able to gain some insight. I could sit quietly with the guilt, for instance, and allow a part of myself to observe the emotion. What is this really signifying? Unrealized expectations? Unworthiness? Fear? Lack of love? All of it...came the answer.

Who else can do this work? Who else can tell you the significance of your experience? If we do not take the time to look within and have love for own journey, we shall surely wander aimlessly loveless and alone.

Feel it. Allow it. Know it to be a part of your true and remarkable self. You are made up of a million shiny pieces...some could be called good and others bad. It is all you and it is all worthy. You are worthy. And when you make the effort, the Universe responds! Here it is! Here's you! You have unlocked the door and it's all here! The hurt, the redemption and the meaning of YOUR life!

And it all starts by feeling what you feel and allowing it to be. Come with me. Let's do this thing.

**This post was inspired by Chapter 1 of the AMAZING book by Gabrielle Bernstein: Add More ~ing To Your Life