Dancing in the Dark

Last night I went out on my back deck while everyone slept. I watched the dance of the fireflies out on my field. I heard the noises of critters in the woods. I took my incense and lit it asking permission from the land and the four directions.

I asked for divine guidance in the solstice. There was serenity as I felt the world around me entering into another night of sleep.

My heart needed the space. It craved for sacredness of ritual and the simple act of lighting a candle was magical. I needed to ground myself in the cool grass.

And just like that I started to unravel. I came undone within minutes being guided through the darkness by divinity.

A middle aged woman started dancing in her back field feeling the energy move from her feet up to her crown. I lost myself in the movement and vastness of the darkness. I returned to me and each sweet breath through mindfulness. I felt the heartbeat of the earth against my own. There were no distractions. At some point it felt like the fireflies and I were in sync to the drumming of my heart.

It was delicious. It was truly empowering to feel my spirit connect to all there is away from the chit chat of a busy mind.

I gave thanks to God. I gave thanks to spirit. I gave thanks to the great mysteries of life. In spite of turmoil moving so close to my heart, I felt blessings from above and beyond. And… still this morning that assurance lingers on.

Dancing in the Rain

The yummiest part of my day was taking my sweet elderly client to the Botanical Gardens. We walked slowly and cautiously on the trail. It was about to rain. He was concerned. I asked, “What would be bad about getting a little rain on us? It’s so wonderful, you know! It’s just water. I can get you back in the car and to the facility in ten minutes!”

He sighed. He smiled. “Well, you are right. I haven’t played in the rain since I was a child.”

“Well then it’s time. If it rains we can sit here and bathe under the forest!”

There was silence. I watched the wheels turning…a reprogramming of thoughts and beliefs.

He sat in deep ponder. He looked out to the creek. He gasped and shared his gratitude in a way that made me cry. I held his hand in mine taking in a mental input of the moment.

“I forget how fast 85 years have come and gone. And I still choose to live so rigid in my military thoughts.”

“Yeah, there isn’t time for that. I say we stay here and dance slowly under the rain!” I said giggling.

We waited. The rain never arrived. Just whispers from the heavens. But we were determined to dance under it so I allowed him to just twirl me for a second slowly on the grass. He showed me the most generous amount of presence.

My heart seemed to be in rhythm with the world around us.

Now you…go find joy in the simple things. You don’t have to follow such severe rigid rules. You are an adult. You get to be in bliss through the simplest ways like chasing a squirrel or butterfly….it might lead you into magic. ~m.a.p.

Dancing Heart

dancing heart

The great Sufi poet Rumi said, “You dance inside my chest.”  I believe that’s one of the most beautiful descriptions of love.  When you feel love it is just like a dance with amazing melodies endlessly pounding inside.  Sometimes the dance is a sensual tango; now and then the exciting Cha-Cha; in rare moments a Waltz while other times it is a delicate choreographed ballet.  And, for every single dance in your chest there is an eternal space connecting with the universe.  There is no shortage or limited capacity to what and who can enter into this joyous festivity.  When your heart is opened to love everyone is welcomed.  Not all will stay but the majority will have bounced, rocked, moved, and made you skip a beat.

Sometimes when I am at a loss for words (believe it or not it happens) I open up a book on poetry or quotes or my favorite inspirational stories.  Each word, paragraph and page allows me to reach inside this party in my chest and turn on the music.  My children, friends, parents, family, strangers and lovers begin to dance in my chest.  Memories flow, not in a sad way, but in the acceptance of being present with all the ecstasy I’ve felt for each person.  Who doesn’t like a great party?  My heart has been broken just like every single person in the world.  But, with each healing the life force in me has expanded.  It has grown to allow a larger gala, celebration, and party.

On this 4th of July allow your heart to dance.  May it start a new shindig and join with an old one.  Allow the dance in your chest to carry you through any loneliness, sadness, mourning, lost, and Cha-Cha your way to the other side of grace, joy and love.  I will see you there…beating inside of mine through our connections with Spirit.

“Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.” ~Rumi

Returning to Innocence

There’s a natural endearing innocence to children.  Their curiosity is breathtakingly admirable.  We forget the wonders of an innocent young mind.  There is a mesmerizing quality to their thoughts and imagination.  If we could just hold on to that simplicity for the rest of our adult life!  How extraordinary the journey would be if we just remained child-like.

Last night we rented a sweet movie called “Salmon Fishing in the Yemen.”  The main character played by Ewan McGregor, is like a small child or one with autism.  His lack of social skills makes him even more innocent.  Sitting through the story I thought about how many times I wish I could just see the world for what it is.  In the movie, the hope and faith of bringing salmon to Yemen from Britain makes one want to go fishing.  Simplicity is so easy but we automatically complicate it.  My mind doesn’t allow for such black and white thoughts.  I tend to go beyond and start to analyze, even when I don’t try to.

Throughout the years, I have watched and witnessed my own children play, laugh, and create wonders from their imaginations.  I have always allowed creativity to be a huge part of their lives.  I encourage them to see the world in more dimensions than the visible one we are accustomed to live in.  In the past few years I have tried to dismiss the rigid structure and ideas I had about my own life.  It is always easier to preach and tell others to live a certain way, but hypocritical not to follow through in our own lives.

'Little Boy' by NelsonMy son, Nelson, took the picture of this little boy on the Greyhound Bus from Miami to Orlando recently.  He knows how much I love pictures of little kids.  I have it on my phone and each time I look at it I am taken to a place of wonder and joy.  What can he be thinking?  How is he seeing the world outside of that window?  Where is his imagination traveling to while he sits on that ride?

So today, after a much busy week, I choose to sit for a little while and marvel at life.  I want to be that little boy staring out the window, witnessing the magic of the world.  I will kick back and stare out the window of my home, while a wedding is taking place in our retreat center.  I choose to laugh and probably cry, as I do in all weddings.   My children have been gone for a week and this house is quiet.  In their absence I will return to my innocence through play and silliness.  I will put my IPOD on dance shuffle and pretend I am a kid again with my round brush as a microphone, standing in front of an invisible audience and belt out to Donna Summer’s Last Dance. After all, being a kid is the best part of growing old.  My body is ready for some fun.

Give yourself the privilege of returning to your innocence.  Play like you mean it.  Dance like if no one was watching. And, sing to your favorite tune!  Life can’t get any sweeter than this….