embracing what is

Reflections on Grief and Joy

A three-quarter moon glowed pinkish-peach from the rising sun’s reflection on its shadowy surface, as it made its decent towards the horizon. Alone, I stood on the beach taking in the luminescent beauty of the moon, and the glimmering platinum ocean. The early morning light created a symphony of colors as the blue from the sky peaked through the fog, creating a metallic bluish-silver color.

The sand was smooth without foot prints, except for the occasional spiky claw print of a seagull. Bundled up with a scarf, hat and jacket on, I walked slowly from one length of the beach to the other, about half a mile, stopping occasionally to take in the quickly changing scenery and watching as the waves gently rolled and crashed. Their sound soothed my broken heart.

It had been eight months since I had separated from John, after being married for 17-years. Despite the separation being my idea, I was devastated that we hadn’t been able to resolve our differences. The grief was unbearable at times, especially since it was compounded by the loss of my dog and letting go of my dream of having a baby. Now, I was also letting go of my life […]

Celebrating the Cycle of Life and Death

The cycle of life, death and rebirth is so rich and beautiful. When someone or something dies, someone or something new is born. Life is forever expanding and expressing itself. If we remain open and awake, we are able to celebrate it in all of its forms.

Recently, I received news that my 97-year-old Grammie was on hospice and dying after a fall from her wheelchair. Even though she was old and I knew her time on earth was coming to an end, I was still heart broken. I wanted one last chance to see her.

While driving to her assisted living home, I went over and over in my mind the things I wanted to express to her…how her life had made a huge impact on so many, what an amazing person she was, how much I loved her. I felt sick to my stomach and had a lump in my throat as I didn’t know what to expect. Would she be awake and conscious? Would I be able to communicate with her? Would she be in pain?

I knocked softly on her door before entering. She was unresponsive, sleeping heavily and looked similar to my father the day he passed […]

By |August 3rd, 2012|Acceptance, Grief and Loss|

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Rising out of Despair

Dark, murky, lonely, hopeless, disconnected from God/Spirit/Light, I feel heavy and helpless like I’m drowning and it takes too much effort to swim to the surface. I sink further and further, into the darkness, into despair. Perhaps I will just stay in the darkness, underwater, where it is peaceful and calm. Where I can be still and my heart can rest and heal from this recent early miscarriage.

I muster the courage and strength to do this writing. I know in my heart, I am not alone. I can reach out to a friend who is familiar with loss. I begin to feel lighter the more I write and am present with my experience. Perhaps I needed to allow myself to go into the darkness, and fully immerse myself with it, before I could begin to rise up into the light.

As I write, I see the yellow rose on my altar, the pedals fully open, extended, reaching up. I see hope in its unfolding. I hope for hope. I don’t want to remain bitter because one of my most cherished dreams continues to go unrealized.

Then I feel it…a spark in my heart, a small flame is lit. There is light! […]

Saying YES to Life after Loss

Relegated to the couch once again, bundled up in a blanket, not only was I in physical pain, but I was angry. It had been more than three weeks since I had gotten sick with the flu around the time of my father’s and brother’s anniversaries of their deaths (see previous post about anniversary reactions). Now, because of a lingering cough, I had fractured a rib. Why is this happening to me? When am I going to feel better?

I longed to be outdoors enjoying the sunshine and longer spring days. All around people were celebrating life. Music played, young folks walked down the street dressed in flip flops, bathing suits and shorts, headed for the beach, while I was stuck inside feeling sorry for myself.

Prior to this illness I had been feeling really good about the progress I had made with my health and with strengthening my immune system. For several months, I had received acupuncture and hadn’t gotten sick. Further, I had been involved in a business training program and had experienced increased prosperity. Now, my business was crumbling and my doubts were growing. Would I ever be able to sustain my health and energy long enough […]

By |June 22nd, 2012|Acceptance, Grief and Loss|

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Allowing Grief; Awakening New Possibilities

Where two rivers joined, I spotted a large dead Ponderosa pine which had fallen down a steep ravine on its side, half of its trunk submerged in the water. Carefully navigating my way down the ravine, I felt excited….This was the first day of my vacation and the tree was the perfect place for me to relax and meditate. As I lay down with my back fully supported by the trunk of the tree and my body soaking up the warmth of the sun, I dangled my feet in the water. The snow melt from the mountains was fresh and the water was freezing. I promptly removed them!

Surrounded by tall pine trees, their needles glistened in the sun, the sound of rushing water soothed my soul. Taking in the beauty all around me, my heart opened and tears welled up in my eyes. I witnessed the abundance, perfection, and grace in nature. The river flowed naturally without hesitation. Even though there were boulders and tree stumps in its path, it conformed and flowed around and over them, but never stopped. It crossed each obstacle with ease. There was no efforting, trying or resisting. It was simply and naturally BEING […]

Creating Room for Grief

The grieving process is natural. Similar to the cycles of the seasons or the ebb and flood of the tides…it is not linear and straightforward, but it comes and goes. At times, we may feel good about life…inspired, energized and in our passion. At others, we may feel sad, fatigued and depressed. Each of these seasons requires something different from us.

          For example, if we are grieving, we may need to draw our energy inward and spend more time resting and focusing on self care. We may have less energy to give and create. Like the winter season, this is a good time to restore our energy for when the spring arrives, allowing the seeds of new life to germinate in the dark soil.

          A couple of weeks before Christmas I found myself feeling blue, heavy-hearted and moody. I was surprised to tune into my body and find hidden grief, sitting under the surface, waiting to be acknowledged. The previous month, I had felt energized and inspired about my business and life, so when grief surfaced, I was resistant at first. There is too much to do to prepare for Christmas. I don’t have time to be sad. Plus, […]

Embracing the Mud: Part II

I decided to embrace the mud on my walk today. After several feet of recent snow fall and then 60 degree weather the last couple of days, there was a lot to embrace! Instead of avoiding it, I stepped right through the muddiest, muckiest, squishiest places. I even jumped in a few puddles, allowing my inner child to come out and play! My experience was of total joy. I was able to be more in the moment without resisting what IS.

By |March 30th, 2010|Acceptance|

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Embracing the Mud

Yesterday, walking my dog, I noticed signs of spring in the air…the sound of birds singing, water dripping from rooftops, a beautiful purple flower peaking through the snow melt, and then there was the mud! Lots and lots of mud! Living on a dirt road has many advantages like no road noise, privacy, and being surrounded by gorgeous pine trees and wild life. But, the down side is the mucky brown mud that surfaces as the temperatures rise and the snow melts.

Walking, I found myself tip toeing in the muddiest spots, going out of my way to avoid them when possible. Inside, my experience was of disgust and resistance. Therefore, I was unable to enjoy myself. I thought about the many ways in which we resist life i.e. hardships, changes, aging. For example, when we’re sick, we resist feeling bad and want to feel better fast. Instead of recognizing the gift of being sick, like taking time out to slow down, we fight it and consequently feel worse. But, when we accept and embrace what life presents to us in any given moment, no matter how uncomfortable we may feel, we open ourselves up to opportunities for growth.

What is […]

By |March 19th, 2010|Acceptance|

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