Monday Mindfulness

Cultivating Strength, Joy, Peace & Resilience


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A stone’s throw

To cross the stream, I search for stones that seem fixed despite the moving waters.

These stones suggest a level of safety in my crossing as they seen unmoved by the current,

stronger than I could be on my own.

Is the stream really too deep and forceful that I need the stones or

can I make the crossing?

I question my capacity to carry myself,

despite the quiet flash of reassurance in my belly suggesting I could navigate the waters just fine on my own.

I turn instead to the stones’ promise to hold me.

Without hesitation, I step wildly, quickly, with hope that they will be what they appear to be.

I put my trust completely in the stones

Only to find them unbalanced, slippery, unable to hold me, and

Depositing me completely and fully into the water.

My trust in the stones vanishes into the darkness.

I fight the current…the message…trust no one.

Suddenly the flash returns…trust…trust yourself.

It doesn’t have to be steady, clear, easy, or look a certain way.

I dive into the self-reliance that holds me, guides me, connects me with the edge of safety.

There in that moment I find trust on the inside that inspires more reliable trust on the outside.


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Mercy

I am not broken.

I am not fragile.

But I am deserving of your kindness.

I do not have to have something wrong with me for you to hold me in your grace, comfort me, love me.

Let me be strong, smart, brave, and wrapped in your love…

and I will do the same for you.

Then, maybe our hurts won’t need to be so big, so often.


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At the center of my being

Right there, in between the meandering branches of my life,

the shifting sands of time,

the ebbing and flowing waters of my mind,

and the soft current that carries my heart,

there is a bright and constant light

that moves and shines through my existence,

the steady point that reminds and renews me over and over again,

guiding me back like a porch light,

to the warm, quiet, stillness of my eternal home within.

Photo credit: Brian Danahy (from the port of Mykanos, Greece)


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Cloaked

Whether by myself or with many,

Warm or cold,

In a place familiar or the unknown,

At the moment I begin to feel disconnected,

I wrap myself in my memories and experiences,

The times when I felt or longed for love,

And those precious moments I encountered,

even if just briefly,

the unconditional essence of my being,

Always there, all ways there.

Cloaked in this love, I am never alone.


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The Pieces

Frequently I stumble over my desire to align myself with someone else, to feel liked, to fit in.

Then, I realize a little piece of me is already aligned with everyone else and that is what allows me to stand out.


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An antidote for loss

When you are suffering, my smile does not mean I don’t care. It may be that I am just opening my heart more in a time when yours may feel closed off.

I am holding a space of warmth and hope in which you can feel sad but not alone.

Allow my smile to soften your pain and be not a blinding light but a guiding light.

Feeling and noticing love and joy in others does not negate the loss. It just reminds us of our capacity to heal and honor loss without getting lost in it ourselves.


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Listening

Smiles and laughter have a beautiful way of resonating in our hearts forever, like the vibration of music carried on the wind. The music is always there…we just sometimes have to stop to listen for it.


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Hmmmmm

A tear carves a cool path along my skin. My heart pounds furiously against the constricted edges of my body. Focused on my imperfections, I am frozen.

Motionless, my attention is suddenly diverted to a deep and robust murmur in the sky. I slowly turn and open my eyes to find a hummingbird still yet racing in the sky before me.

Wings fluttering so quickly I cannot see them, heart beating 500 times the speed of mine, there it hovers, searching just like me for nourishment in its motionless.

It’s lightness as much a reality as my heaviness.

Joy and freedom projecting from its racing heart and pounding wings.

My racing heart begins to feel less burdened.

My constricted body is now inspired to move.

The illusion I’ve created of my suffering fades.

I find nourishment in transforming my experiences into joy and lightness, choosing the qualities of a hummingbird over failure.


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Disordered Eating

Sometimes I eat to soothe.

I eat to drown.

I eat to fuel,

to ease my nerves,

…to breathe.

Sometimes I eat to fit in.

Sometimes I eat to feel loved.

There should be no shame or guilt in my eating. It is in the stories I weave of need, of loss and pain, where the suffering sets in. Stories of worthiness, of import. Stories based in anger, fear, and greed…towards the outside world and more strikingly towards myself.

Sometimes our stories weave together and then again we may just appear odd to one another.

So, we hold a space for each to simply taste, receive, be grateful and full, where there is no longing…no gaps to fill, no stories to write or rewrite,

where the order of eating is founded in mercy, grace, and love.


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Barefoot

When I feel burdened, I go outside

and feel the whispers of Mother Earth through my feet,

knowing I am held in the vast container of the Universe

where there is ample room for me

and all of my emotions,

thoughts,

and beingness.

There where the earth meets the sky, I can pour it all out

and let the knot at the center of this struggle

begin to unravel.

There I feel the freedom in knowing I am not alone.

I am, in fact, cradled lovingly,

always

in these arms,

my breath as full and free as the sky,

my spirit rooting down.

When I step outside,

I step into being all of me.