Of varying form and purpose, we all arrive in a beautiful and powerful way – the key is to remain here not with force but with formidable grace.
The ocean rolls in and out, finding a rhythm in the irregular beat of its waves on the shore, a consistency in the inconsistency.
It asks that I bend more, stay more still, listen more closely, find my entry, consider a way to dive in while still feeling my feet.
Restless…rejecting…beautiful…inciting…matching breath to motion.
Sometimes steady and full, sometimes roaring in…sometimes barely there.
Here together, a push and pull of synchrony.
Even in the struggle you connect me with my breath.
You awaken my senses.
You remind me what it means to exist and give me permission to settle into my unsettledness.
Every day, I tenderly pluck and sort the unwanted guests between the treasured plants in the garden of this life of mine. I carefully reach between the stalks and flowers I choose to keep and arrange them all just so.
And, even with the most careful attention, I never leave my garden without scrapes, brush marks and bruises.
Yes, some of the most treasured plants in my garden have thorns. I move with particular sensitivity around them lest they snag my flesh. And somehow even as they cut me, I am still able to see their beauty and feel their special worth. They reach out and brush against me as if they just want to touch, to say “isn’t this all so grand that we are here?!”
It is at that moment when I am wounded but still capable of loving – even those plants with thorns – that I recognize that this coexistence is the essence of thriving.
These days have felt so heavy, so serious, and rather dark…so much sourness and bitterness. I get it – our experiences are supposed to be varied – not all sweet and easy to digest – and those moments that are toughest on the tastebuds could actually be what is needed in the end for optimal health.
I also know that as I strive to make forward progress, even as I check tasks off the list and move effectively towards growth and change, if I get caught up in what sour and bitter flavors are to come, I may miss out on the tastiest treats yet.
If I can find room to smile, to laugh, to accept all that stands before me just as it is, I may find that what I thought too sour to handle is sitting right there just smiling back at me, waiting till I am ready to dive in, knowing it will do me good.
There are thinks I follow through on and thinks that follow me.
There are thinks that motivate and thinks that discourage.
There are thinks that build me up and thinks that crumble me to the ground.
There are thinks I think of doing and thinks that do on their own.
There are thinks I engage and thinks I avoid.
There are thinks I want to have and thinks that seem to taunt me.
There are thinks I hope to have and thinks that linger long past their usefulness.
It seems my thinks are here to stay.
Thankfully, I know they are not all that is me…they are just my thinks…just resting in a small crevasse of my being…
…and it is okay to let some get away.
Whatever you do, do it with the essence of ease.
It doesn’t mean stop what you are doing. It means stay connected to your source, as if you are carrying your home with you, so you are not impatiently trying to get somewhere.
Slow down from the inside, even if the outside is wanting or needing to move swiftly. You can move swiftly, full of purpose and zeal, but on the inside remain steady, slow moving.
When I slow down on the inside, I find I don’t need to push so hard on the outside because I know I’m already where I should be.
When I learn to let go of anger, you begin to feel ease.
When I stop shaming myself, you become less judgmental.
When I no longer let my past determine my future, you gain hope and excitement.
When I can forgive myself for every and any mistake, shortcoming, and perceived failure, you let go of regrets.
When I remain in a positive state, your fears begin to fade away.
When I unconditionally love myself through the darkness and fears that arise, I invite your inner light to shine.
When I love me, you love more.
When I free myself, I free you.
Motion around me could easily create a distraction or even be perceived as a danger. Motion around me could be a sign that things are passing me by.
Or, motion could be a wonderful reminder to feel my own stillness, to watch without attachment, and not be in such a hurry to get somewhere.
Waiting for my thoughts to quiet.
With each breath, feigning an attempt to soften the tension in my muscles.
Always on high alert, my body is the ever faithful soldier standing at attention, ready to advance, attack, or defend.
My thoughts and feeling providing constant counsel, conducting their business at all hours of the day and night as if essential personnel.
It is a strange request I make that all the components that serve me in my daily busy-ness are called upon now to rest.
They are troubled by this pause as it could imply they may no longer be needed. They resist – the body…the mind…the emotions that want to protect and define me.
And yet, a strange and delightful spaciousness coats my experience when I am willing to just sit down and breathe.
It frees them all to not disappear but to serve me better. They become my friends, sipping tea on the deck, holding hands and dancing in the absence of mission and doing.
Oh, the joy of knowing my thoughts, my feelings, my body in the absence of need.
We rest here for a bit together, finding a freshness in how we coexist…
…and then we agree to do this much more often.
Do not worry, my friend…we know the way. To stumble or feel unsure does not require that we abandon the walk. Rather, it is simply calling upon us to step more genuinely and confidently across the stones, to move more freely to the rhythm of our own knowing. We have been preparing to walk these stones, this path, for a lifetime. You know the way.