Monday, October 26, 2009

Spiritual Moments

I recently took a trip to Taos, NM.  While there, we visited Chimayo and I have to say, I found the Santuario to be Spiritual, humbling, and very calming.  In the past, I have often found Catholic churches to be places of great peace for me.  This visit did not disappoint in that regard.  My parents had both visited the grounds before and seemed to head right to where they each wanted to go, my dad to Leona’s (a restaurant/store on the grounds), my mom to the sanctuary to get sand.  We stopped along the way to take pictures, but as soon as I set foot on the little path leading up the hill, that sense of peace appeared.  I did not need to know where I was going because I was where I was supposed to be.  IMG_0600

Everyone who comes to Chimayo has their own reasons for being there.  Some come for healing, some to pray, some for holy water, some for the dirt one can collect from a hole located in a little alcove of the Santuario, some to ask help from others, and some come to visit Leona’s.  I was there because my parents wanted to show the place to me.  I was not sure what I would find as I did not remember my parents showing me pictures they had taken there on previous visits.

At various locations throughout the grounds, people leave rosaries, pictures, inscribed rocks, even crutches.  I was unable to get pictures of some of the most amazing sights as they were inside the church, but a few I was able to get give a taste of things.IMG_0601 grayscale


At some point I had followed my mom in to the Santuario.  While she went to the alcove to gather some sand, I sat in the larger alcove and just took in all of the emotions, wishes, and prayers that were attached to the items left there.  I then went to see what my mom was up to, and she smiled and said ‘Hey, stand in the hole!’  Not one to question a random suggestion like that, I stood in the hole.  My dad had just done the same and his reaction was amusement at having to stand in it.  I noticed that I sunk as soon as I stepped into the hole.  I felt more grounded as I have ever felt, and yet, at the same time felt like I could just take off and leave my body standing there in the hole.  Just as suddenly as that thought came, I felt an intense sense of calmness pass over me.  The feeling of calm, spiritual connectedness brought me to tears and I had a strong need to step out of the hole and walk to the larger alcove.  I later learned that around that time, a good friend’s mother had passed.  I decided to leave something behind, and so IMG_0595on the statue pictured above I left a necklace I had made.  I did not have a prayer strand with me but the same intent had gone into the necklace that goes into the prayer strands I make.  We shall have to wait and see if anything comes of the visit beyond the sense of peace and some great pictures.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Life Cannot be Lived Waiting

I feel inspired, and yet…lost.  I is almost as if I have been living a half life the past few years.  I have discovered many things about myself, and yet, many of the things I have discovered sit, unattended, under utilized, collecting dust, and needing mending.  So then, what is stopping me from really moving forward with some of these things?  Am I just lazy, or am I afraid, or – more likely – is it a combination of both?  I want to run, to sing, dance, play, write, live.  What do I do instead?  I go to work, do my job, and come home.  I have moments where I sing and play, but not fully.  There is always a part of me that holds back.  This part of me does not want to be seen, she has been hanging on since I was younger and suddenly became shy.  Somewhere around 23 years ago I went from a rather outgoing little girl, willing to talk with just about anyone, unafraid to share stories, experiences, feelings, to a quiet, shy girl, a girl who did not say a word to anyone at school for two months.  I have let go of a lot of that, but there is still some that lingers, holding tightly to my…. to me, holding me back.

I know that some of you who are going to read this will say “Then just change and do what you want.  You are all that is holding you back.”  It is tough to break a pattern that you have had for so long.  Growing up, when someone told me ‘no you can’t do that’ I would then go and prove them wrong.  There would be a challenge to it, it would awaken a need in me to prove someone else wrong.  It is rare that I get that now, and if I do, I do not take it too seriously since I know full well that I can do what I want as an adult if I put my mind to it.

I have moments when my spunky, outgoing, inner self comes out.  These are mostly in comfortable places, with people I know pretty well… the yurt, church (during choir mostly, or small meetings, not so much during coffee hour).  I like to think that these moments are happening more frequently, but the shut down moments are still frustrating.


No, I do not need to analyze and examine and understand what happened in the past to change the future, but it helps.  It helps as long as it does not become your sole focus.  So, it is now time to shift focus.  It is time to understand, events shaped how I grew, shaped who I am.  Future events will shape who I am to become.  Life cannot be lived waiting.  Where will your path take you?


Thursday, June 11, 2009

Cleaning up past thought processes….

Lately I have been stressed, doing too much, depressed, and frustrated.  All of that does not add up to a good thing, in fact, it usually adds up to quite a bit of nothing aside from parking it on the couch when one is not out being too busy to look after themselves. 


“If I feel depressed I will sing. If I feel sad I will laugh. If I feel ill I will double my labor. If I feel fear I will plunge ahead. If I feel inferior I will wear new garments. If I feel uncertain I will raise my voice. If I feel poverty I will think of wealth to come. If I feel incompetent I will think of past success. If I feel insignificant I will remember my goals. Today I will be the master of my emotions.”

~ Og Mandino

The first sentence in that quote sums up what I tend to do, which leads to the second sentence… the third is where things fall apart.

Part of what is going on is my seeming inability to get things done, and then keep them up.  Let me give you an example… my bathroom is a constant struggle to keep tidy.  I can get it nice and clean and looking good, and that usually sparks a desire to clean another room in the house.  If I don’t get to that other room soon enough however, the clutter in the house starts to once again take over the bathroom and I start at square one.  For some reason I cannot get to the ‘general maintenance’ stage of things.  The same is true for my health.  I started a walk/jog pattern, was doing various aerobic activities on the off days and all was well, until my life once again got involved and I slowed down, got sick, back went out, etc.  Well, I now have amazing sinus pressure and my hip hurts pretty bad, and I have excess energy because I cannot go jog or dance.  While having my hip hurt is better than having my back hurt as it did, the problem still exists.

I do not want to be one of those people who blames all of her problems on childhood, but growing up it was always ‘quick, get it clean!’ and then the room in question was allowed to slip backwards to square one for the cycle to repeat again.  That thought pattern seems to have stuck around.  I have tried this and that method and so far have not found something that has stuck.  I believe what needs to be done is not adapting yet another program/method/etc, but to change how I view things in my mind.  I need to remove the ‘this can sit here for now I will deal with it later’ mindset and replace it with ‘I am done with this, it will now find its home’ mindset.

If I am going to do well in life I need to wrap myself around this concept.  I also just need to throw a lot of things away. 

“Better keep yourself clean and bright. You are the window through which you must see the world.”

~ George Bernard Shaw


My windows need a good cleaning.  I feel like I am floating along, unaware of my destination, allowing life to throw me to and fro like a leaf rushing downstream.  Somehow I need to transform from the leaf, into the tree, standing sure and spreading my roots out to find the nutrients I need to survive and provide for the amazing nature and life around me.



May I sway as the willow does, firmly planted by the ever changing banks of stream and pond.  May I adapt to my surroundings, bend with the wind, provide shelter and food to those in need.  May I move with grace, taking time to rest and replenish in times of silence.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

The Little Things

It is amazing what one little change can do to your life.  When you make that change you may think ‘What’s one thing among the many I could be doing?’  And then…. well then you surprise yourself and the Universe and the PTB join in the surprise and before you know it, your whole world is different.  I am at the early stages of that change, but it is there, lurking all the same.

My body and I have been locked in a battle since I stopped going to karate classes in high school.  My weight has been all over the place, as have my not so healthy habits.  I’ve gone through periods of change where things happened rapidly with what seemed like little effort on my part, but I was not doing things in a healthy way.  According to a doctor, I was, but I did not feel healthy.  So it didn’t last.  The weight came back, the bad eating habits came back, and all because it was just too drastic, too hard to stick with.

A friend of mine (hi woobs!) has made amazing strides towards her goals over the last year and a half or so.  She has some of the same issues as I do, and yet, she has not been drastic about her methods or even her goals.  I like that.  So I decided, now would be my time of change, using her as a beacon.  I started going to the gym on a regular basis, eating right, etc, and the weight started to come off again, and I felt pretty good.  Then I got sick, and had to cut back on the gym and lost the habit.  Then when I would feel better, my back would act up.  The cycle continued until my back finally went out and I now have a great chiropractor that I see fairly regularly.  I am also slowly trying to get back to the gym.

With this decision, to better myself for me, a host of other little changes have come about.  Even on days I cannot get to the gym or out for a walk/hike/jog, I will do a series of exercises at home.  This morning I was even doing a couple of them while I brushed my teeth!  With this, I have been going to bed earlier, and getting up in time to see the sun rise and turn the sky a lovely shade of pink with some oranges in there as well.  Then I read today that sunrise light, is the best at making a person feel awake and rested as they start their day.  I am also back on track with the eating thing – I even passed up a brownie at my parents’ house tonight!  I never pass up chocolate, let alone a brownie… that says a lot about the changes I’m making.

So what started this all off this time?  A picture.  A simple picture.  People tend to put up shots of themselves looking the opposite of what they want.  All this does is make the person feel guilty and they guilt eat, which is likely part of what got them to the point they are at now.  Instead, I found one of me at 16.  Thanks to karate I had an amazing figure at the time, and felt great.  It is not my short term goal, but long term, I think I could get there again.  Seeing how I can look when I exercise, makes me want to do it as a reward to myself.  It isn’t something I have to do, but something I want to do.  I know I feel better, and look better, when I exercise, I just have to overcome the things that the PTB throw in my face.  I know they’re just testing me, to see if I really mean it, that is part of their job.

New Image

“Only as high as I reach can I grow, only as far as I seek can I go, only as deep as I look can I see, only as much as I dream can I be.”

~ Karen Ravn

Thursday, April 16, 2009

It's all about who you share the journey with...

My computer's been on vacation for a while. That's given me quite some time to think about really random things. I've also spent that time cleaning and baking (work loves me right now).

The past two years around this time I've been on my way to Florida to visit a friend. This year I'm breaking that pattern and am not going. Funds are short and there's too much going on around here lately. While walking out the door, or from the car to the office in the mornings, I've noticed something... it feels like Florida mornings around here lately. With the forcasted snow it will feel different tomorrow but the past few days it's been lovely. It struck me, that I've been leaving the state for a feeling, when I only had to notice it around here. Granted, it isn't often that Colorado feels like Florida unless it's the middle of summer and Florida is dry. I've felt mildly disconnected from myself, my past, things I used to do to welcome the seasons, and the Universe plops this observation in my lap for me to ponder. Is it really so much where we are or is it more who we are with? Granted, people with SAD have issues in places that lack much sun, but in general do people matter more than environment?

I am not saying that environment doesn't matter but is it as important? I suppose this quickly turns into a person by person basis scenario.

“Be careful the environment you choose for it will shape you; be careful the friends you choose for you will become like them.”

- W. Clement Stone

I haven't seen much of my friends lately, it's been a time for reflecting and renewing I suppose. I am at that point now however where I'm itching to go and do something with friends. Walk, have a deep conversation, have a rather light conversation, sit and watch a movie, etc.

“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart and can sing it back to you when you have forgotten the words.”

- Annon

“One measure of friendship consists not in the number of things friends can discuss, but in the number of things they need no longer mention.”

- Clifton Fadiman

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Live, observe, and show....

I have been meaning to update here and while sometimes, 'it's the thought that counts' the saying can't quite cover everything, such as updating a blog. Life has thrown me for a loop yet again lately. A few weeks ago I assisted a reiki III class and was asked to assist with the attunements. That was an experience I won't soon forget, nor will I soon stop nitpicking my ability to participate in the event. The only practice I had was in a journey where my guide had me attune him. He seemed to think I did alright, but his opinion didn't matter quite as much as that of my teacher. She thought I did alright for my first time, but had a couple of ways I could improve. I'm greatful for her advice since she has been doing this for years and I am just starting out. I did my best to see it as help and not criticism... I think I did well at that. It is a tough thing for me to actually hear the advice and know where it is coming from and act on it. My typical response is 'Oh yeah?! Well I'll show you!' Sometimes that response is warranted, but most of the time it is not, especially if you take care to only surround yourself with those who wish to help you rather than those who wish to use you. The distinction can sometimes be rather minor and hard to spot, that's where listening to and trusting in your heart come into play.

I recently had a weekend of... self discovery... no that isn't quite what it was. It was rather empowering and full of breakthroughs but it cannot be definied by 'self discovery'. On the 13th I turned 28, I also had another shamanic session, played the bowls with my teacher/friend, had an amazing time talking with good friends, and realized how many people out there care about me. Eye opening to say the least. The session mainly revolved around my root chakra and the scars that had formed there over the years. Some of the scars were created by me, some I had allowed others to create. They joked that I would be a virgin again after the session nad in some ways I think that's true, at least where my chakras are concerned. An amusing point that was made, is that I will no longer be in hiding, and yet I will be returning to my observer self. The first session I had a year and a half ago or so brought me out of the hiding/observation mode/mindset and this one partially brings me back. Though I do not see it so much as bringing me back but showing me another way to be an observer. One can completely hide in the shadows and observe, never letting themselves be seen; or one can observe while being out in the open. The second type of observation is often harder as the mind can start to switch into 'look at me!' mode because you must want to be observed and seen if you are out there putting on a show. The intention must be changed and made clear in these instances. Show yourself, only show yourself caring for the other person/people you are with. Make them the focus as you watch their energies/emotions/actions.

“The universe as we know it is a joint product of the observer and the observed”

~ Teilhard de Chardin

The point that the Universe seems to be pushing home for me lately, is to outwardly show, outwardly demonstrate. It is easy for me to internally demonstrate a feeling or a thought or to demonstrate it with a look, not so easy to actually demonstrate it. By this I mean physically demonstrate something. During the attunement I did not physically push symbols into people with my breath but did so in my mind. This is fine for myself but the students being attuned needed that physical reminder of what was happening. During one of the exercises we did a role play activity where one was the parent, one the child, and I could not speak my part and reverted back to trying to get it across with just energy. I have a friend who often reminds me to use my words rather than just gesturing and expecting him to get it. While he is getting better at deciphering my gestures or looks, I should not rely on his ability to understand my point at all times when I do not actually share/speak my point or my desires.

Attempting to find quotes on speaking, most I find hint at not speaking and letting emotions simply be and be felt. There are pages of quotes from people regretting how much they have said, how people do not regret having said too little. This does not take into effect all the people who say 'If only I had said....' when a relationship or a life ends. I think the trick, is to say what you mean and feel with more than a modicum of respect for the recipient of your words.

I close with this...
Speak carefully, but never fearfully
Love fiercely, but never obsessively
Demonstrate your feelings physically, but never abusively

I'm reminded of the saying 'an action is worth a thousand words' ... but sometimes, a word is worth a thousand actions.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Define it...

I hope I can get this all out...

The other day I was driving home, giving myself a pep talk of sorts. My mind started to wander down a familiar road. People ask us what we do for a living and we answer with 'I am ...' Rather than 'I ...' We are so defined by our jobs that we don't even think twice about saying that our job is what we are. Because of that, I started to think 'who am I?' I'm not talking about the fuzzy, way out there in the middle of space answer, but the now, the here. As I type I can already tell that what I told myself that night won't come out in my fingers as they type away. But that's ok. The 'me' I am changes with each breath I take.

"I am more than I know myself to be."

I am a healer, I am a woman, I am someone who is ready to open up, to be seductive if the right key is found, I am sensual, caring, serious. I am a counselor, a friend, a soft place to land when things are rough. I am a reiki practitioner, practicing each day to be the master that is within. I am bold and brazen, yet I am shy and quiet. I am a person who loves to be outside when the world is full of mist and mystery, when the forest turns into a land from the imagination. I am a nature freak, with a taste for things only found in the city. I am sensitive and because of that, I am strong. I am a lover who sometimes falls to easily and too quickly, but has no regrets in doing so. I am a writer, a jeweler, a minister, a teacher. I am an old soul who is separate yet never alone. I am ready, ready to step into my power as a person, ready to learn how to tap into all aspects of my being. I am ready to do great things. I am me.

If you read my list, and question some of it, talk to me, ask me, maybe I can help you to see that part of me. For those who know what I do daily to earn a living, you'll notice I did not mention that job in this list. It doesn't define me. It allows me to be who I am safely but it is not me.

So then.... who are you?