What We Want and Who We Are

greatest

Reading a book called Soulshaping by Jeff Brown the other night, I came upon a sentence: “Never confuse conscious effortlessness with conscious laziness.” Just that sentence brought up a huge amount of questions inside of me. I began to think how do you know what you want if you don’t know who you are? Confusing our “conscious wants” without realizing the “conscious consequences” is a mistake we all make. And out of pure laziness we expect our wants to materialize and fix everything.

It is always difficult to battle with resistance from our human perspective. Our ego’s main job is to make certain that we continue to fight. What we want is not always what completes us. We seem to deviate from our original wants and then blame the universe for not getting what we think we deserve.

When I was a child I said I was going to have ten children. At twenty I had my first son. At twenty-two my second one. A divorce followed shortly after and I couldn’t have any more children. Years later I adopted four orphans from Romania. Would ten children make me a different person from God’s original plan? Of course. My wants versus my needs to be loved unconditionally. That was my egotistical perspective of the more children, the more I would be loved.

Also, as a teenager I wanted to study to be a pediatric cardiologist.  I wanted to “fix” the hearts of children. God’s plans overrode that desire. Then one day, sitting with all six kids watching a movie I realized that I had become a pediatric cardiologist. I got to “fix” these little orphans’ hearts in a way that the Divine intended. Things are never as we plan. Because of this, we are driven to become different from what we wanted. Little did I know that I would end up with a seventh child in my midlife years.

A few years ago I decided to go back to school and get my degree in psychology. I had enough experience in one household with bi-polar disorder, schizophrenia, dissociative identity disorder, learning disabilities, extreme cases of obsessive compulsive disorder, multiple personalities, and an array of other little disorders, not including the few I have carried on my own back.  Add an ex who was the poster boy for narcissism personality disorder and bang….I had my own thesis for a PhD. I wanted to help others. I wanted to hear their stories so I can feel that my life’s purpose was of worth. God’s intention to my wants is still up in the air for me. I am working on this one! Humor has managed to carry me through all these stories and intercepts me with others who are willing to share them with me.

We are responsible for reaching our goals, but most of the time we are afraid of success. We are paralyzed by past traumas and experiences so we stop ourselves. These are the nuts and bolts of living a life in separation versus unity. Our wants can’t be met if we don’t know who we are. We don’t sit long enough to take accounting of our desires. We think that needs are the same as our wants. What we need and what we want are in constant battle with our Spirit. God speaks through our strengths the most compelling way. We spend our lives not feeling the truth of who we are, and not really knowing consciously what we want. Whenever we do come in alignment with our desires and the Divine, we must take a look at the reflection and realize that whatever we manifest is exactly who we are meant to be. The illusion of control, law and science melts because life just is. We learn to see the world as it is, not how our perception creates it from our egotistical wants.

The Art of Negotiation

negotiation

Every night our 2-1/2 y/o gets put into bed at 7PM. Five minutes after my husband and leave the room she starts with her negotiations:

 

“Mommy, I want drink!”

“Daddy, I need potty!”

“Heyyyyyy, I need kiss!”

“I want baby in bed.” (Whatever stuff animal or doll she requires that night)

“I need say bye to Titan!” (Titan is our dog)

“I want hug.”

Her demands vary in the degree of her desire and willingness to stay up. These negotiations don’t last more than 10 to 15 minutes. Sometimes they are ingenious. I am blown away at her ability to practice voicing her wants and needs. Kudos to the little one. Yesterday afternoon she used a new one.

We were on our way back home from seeing friends. She had not had a nap. So, as we were getting closer to the house I said, “Kali bug, when we get home you have to take your nap.” She immediately whined, “No way!” I said, “Yeah!” She stayed quiet for a few seconds.

“Mommy is my best friend.”

“Aw, that’s so sweet. Thank you! You are my best friend too.”

“Mommy, no nap to Kali.”

“Yeah…still you are getting a nap and now even more because I am your best friend. This is even a better reason for napping. Best friends get cranky and then mean, and then no more best friends. We need to rest. You understand?”

“Oh, yeah. No more cranky. And mommy and Kali bestest friend?” She questioned it so sweet.

“Yeap….happy rested best friends!”

She took her nap without a word. I give her an immense amount of credit for her ability to give it a fighting chance to get out of doing things. She’s strengthening her awareness, her argumentative gene, preparing it for the future. Who knows, she may become an attorney fighting for Humanitarian Rights because the way she tries to come up with questions and answers at this age is remarkable.

The art of negotiation begins the moment we are born. We learn that when we are hungry, wet, or need attention we cry. We scream. Then we stop until the next time that we need what we need. We are taught by our environment how to challenge the negotiations. We learn our parents’ behaviors and reactions. And, this is where we learn the necessity to be heard. We are conditioned that if we cry or scream we can be heard. Some folks spend the rest of their lives screaming for attention. Others, are heard with the softest whisper. How our parents reacted and conditioned behaviors becomes the subconscious habits of our communication skills.

Answering a child all the time,”Because I say so,” doesn’t work anymore. It’s sometimes a demeaning authoritative behavior. I want to know the why’s, what’s and how’s…and so do children. I used to say this all the time with my other 6 kids. This little one is teaching me that I need to be mindful of my reactions and behaviors. Negotiation is a two way street. I am not going to sit there and argue with a two year old, but I am going to try and make her aware of why I have made the decision. Because they understand. Never underestimate a child. They know when you are full of crap and when you are being totally real. They are born with a lie detector mechanism that lets them know you aren’t being authentic in your answers and actions.  Also, a child deserves the same attention that you would give an adult. They need to know that they matter.

Years ago I watched the famous novelist, Toni Morrison, in an interview with Oprah.  She was sharing how she wrote her first novel long hand on a notebook.  She had her children’s snot on pages, along with food stains and even some small amount of vomit. She learned, as her creativity was shooting from all directions, that she needed to pay attention to her kids.  At one specific moment she looked up and recognized that she needed to be there with whatever was going on. Her writing had to wait till they didn’t require her energy, either when they slept or went to school.  She needed to always be mindful to answering them with truth and authenticity.  I have never forgotten this interview, especially now with another young child.  I am reminded that just being in her presence is not enough at times.  She requires eye-to-eye contact and attention.  I understand because, I too, require it from my loved ones.

We grow up understanding the art of negotiations, compromises, arbitration, and mediation. There are folks walking around not being heard, because since they were children they weren’t regarded. (Who remembers that old comment: Children are meant to be seen and not heard?) There are others going around harassing the world with their negativity and illogical disposition because they were catered to their every whim and now assume the world owes them everything.

Be mindful and conscious of your negotiations and how you act and react to the world around you. Partake openly and curiously with others. Ask questions. Give answers. Don’t be afraid to voice your opinions in a loving and compassionate way. Bulldozing is not the answer. Manipulation is disturbing and disgusting as well. You have been given the ability, as a divine human being, to use your voice as a tool to make life better for others. Be aware of your tone, your language, and your energy. You are magnificent and the less ego you use to magnify your intentions, the louder you are heard. Silence is also the wisest teacher in your world! Always act accordingly whether it’s through actions or loving words. Your strength always shows through your energy.

Make Fear an Inspiration

inspiration

Time has a way of defining moments

and in the voice of fear

hear the words for

change and imagination.

In the sight of fear

make the world

a playground for your desires.

In the presence of fear

make it an inspiration

to create a new opportunity

that will mark a path

to a new life.

Don’t be paralyze by the unknown

but allow it to take your hand,

be your pull,

and fly with wings that angels

have provided

so you can soar above

every obstacle ahead.

Fear is false belief

of what you cannot control,

but with God on your side

there is no evidence of madness.

Discovering your strength

comes only in the obstacles of fear…

make it your inspiration

not your isolation.

You have choices

just do it

I was heading back up the mountain from Asheville this afternoon when I noticed all the buds on the trees. Ah, spring is re-birthing! I am so happy. I thought about the new moon and the eclipse tonight and all the things that I have read about the “power and intensity” of manifestation and creating, etc. etc. etc. It’s overwhelming all the articles written in regards to this specific new moon. I believe in the cosmic changes to an extent. But, I believe mostly in my feelings and how my “knowing” has been clouded lately. I see change happening quickly. I see my life transforming towards a way I never thought it would just a year ago. We all live by our choices. The way we become truthful to our desires is the way we expand and evolve. Sometimes we get stagnant and stuck because we are afraid of what others think. At other times we must retrieve and feel the changes, ask for guidance and then proceed with what is best for us. It’s when we don’t follow anything and we just keep wishing without action that we do ourselves a huge injustice.

I remember a joke about the Puerto Rican man who kept asking God to win the lotto. “Ay Dios mio (Oh my God) please help me win the lotto so I can help my son, so and so. Please, God.” Every day he would pray and beg for money to arrive through the lottery. Finally the man dies and goes to Heaven. He is in front of God and God says to him, “My son, is good to see you.” The man, very upset tells him, “Dios Mio, (My Lord) I have a bone to pick with you. I begged and prayed for the lotto every day for twenty years and nothing. I faithfully lived a life believing you would grant me this prayer….” He kept ranting and God smiled down at him and said, “Did it ever occur to you to buy a lottery ticket?”

Choices change our lives profoundly. Every decision we make is a ripple that leads to a path in life. We make choices to mend broken hearts, move, restart and reinvent ourselves, relationships, change of careers, and many other assignments that provide for our journey. I have trusted God/Divine Source to guide me. I have stopped when I have seen signs ahead. It’s not always been this way. I know now when the little voice whispers to listen. Whenever I ignore it I get sick: a bleeding ulcer or something worse. I am reminded that I have all the answers within me but I must trust. I must be guided by faith but also do my part to make things happen (otherwise I am being like the little Puerto Rican man who never bought the lottery ticket). By just sitting down and saying, “God, I need this and that could you please provide the next step” but I don’t do something to take me to the next step…that’s in injustice to my spiritual body. It’s unfair to my higher self. And, it’s a tremendous unrealistic expectation that will never be met.

We all know truth. It feels right. It looks sweet. It smells like freedom. We also know when we are delusional and thinking that by doing the same thing over and over we will get a different result. That’s insanity to the oomph degree. I asked myself these questions in my morning pages: “What choices have you made that have altered your life for the better? What choices can you make to change for the better at this moment? If you can do anything without anyone or anything stopping you, what would it be? What would your life look like if you proceeded with these choices? Can you allow for these changes and remain living the way you have been?” There were several other questions. It’s very difficult to be honest without feeling like others will be disappointed but that’s the thing about choice: they are yours alone. No one should choose or decide how you will live. If you feel stuck then it is time to set yourself free. If you feel invaluable then you better find something to help you get back to feeling worth it. We complicate life because of over thinking choices. Just do it…like Nike says!

Each one of us have different dreams. We have millions of stories that may run parallel to one another but no one can choose for you to be happy. You must find that within yourself. Just like spring, there is a rebirth waiting for us. It’s time to create a new story or just write a new chapter to the old one. Make out your lists, your wishes and allow the new moon, the cosmos and whatever else you call upon to help you manifest those things that will bring you joy again. You got this!

The Magic of Beginnings

Two lovers enter into an intimate conversation early on in their relationship:

He asks, “Are you afraid of falling in love?”

She answers, “Not with you.”

He asks, “Why’s that?”

She answers with a smile, “Cause I know you will catch me when I fall.”

There is something tender in allowing yourself to fall in love.  There is also something magical in knowing that the other person will not hurt you.  Love is not a power struggle, an ego booster, or a platform for ownership.  It is about letting go and allowing Spirit to perform its pursuit for the betterment of your heart’s desires.

I’ve had the privilege to be among many friends.  Some of them have entered into new relationships.  They beam with energy, excitement, romance, and that mystical union of two people getting to know each other.   In both relationships I witnessed something that had never been there before: appreciation and admiration.  There is kindness, generosity and mutual respect.  Like a Tango dance, one needs the pull and pushing, the give and take, the seduction and the closeness all mixed into a rhythmic dance of divinity.  The hopeless romantic in me smiles with admiration at that harmonious partnership.

I can’t say that I’ve been accused of not loving enough in my relationships.  I give all of me, sometimes too much, because I am not met half way.  And, when I am done I can continue to move past the hurt and realize how beautiful the lessons were for the betterment of my spirit.  I’ve been fortunate that on some occasions after moving on the person has shared that I loved hard (and it wasn’t so much me that “broke it” but their own insecurities and self-loathing).   I can’t shun away from love because of past relationships.  I am in a beautiful healthy one now.  If I had stopped the idea of love, closed my heart completely, I wouldn’t have met this incredible counterpart of my journey!

How many times have we passed on the idea of love or getting to know someone just to regret it later on?  How many times have we allowed ego to dictate our heart’s desires to then realize that the person was actually “The One?”  The past is a wilderness forest.  Many of us choose to stay there because of fear of the unknown.  We are afraid to move past the forest into the open spaces and allow the heart to guide us.  In that paralyzing fear of holding on to past events, we lose the chance to meet a counterpart of our divinity to be loved.

I always find the “falling in love” part easy.  It’s the staying in that place of vulnerability that is challenging.  Every day, as I meet more people entering into loving relationships, I believe I am attracting that energy into my own love life.  I refused to settle for someone who could not meet me half way in my heart’s yearnings.  I wasn’t willing to compromise my self-love for anyone.  It’s taken me too many years to repair and rebuild self-worth and love.   It has taken me a lifetime to realize that simplicity, kindness, intelligence, openness, and laughter are prerequisites for my soul mate.

This man sees me as a hippie chick, a deep romantic, and/or a trusting spirit.  I know that the falling in love part is the best drug in the world when shared with someone who has my best intention at heart. When it is easy, soft, appreciated and graceful there is no other place I would rather be.  The alternative of having him passed by was not an option.

Allow yourself the gift of openness, trust, vulnerability and diving into the arms of love.  You never know who will be there to catch you when you fall!

Running Scared

scare the world

I fear very few things: lizards (or anything that looks like one), losing my mind completely, never saying what I really want to say, being considered a hypocrite, and losing my faith.  I am pretty much content with life.  Few things stop me from reaching what I want.  Most of these things are enemies that live in my own head: past life traumas, leftover voices from others, and my own ego sabotaging success.

What I find is that if, and when, I put every dream out to the universe I get it all.  When I let go with pure intentions I get it better than I expect it.  Being scared is also an opportunity to be brave.  If we fear nothing then how would we know what courage looks like?  There is also the opportunity to explore why we fear certain things.  Is it something from the past that has to be processed and learned in order to move on? Is it our internal knowing telling us to beware? Is it ego?  Often times what holds us back from moving forward is the anxiety of the future and allowing it to paralyze our progress.  That which we don’t know is kinda scary when we place expectations into it.  The point is to have no expectations!

I woke this morning, finally having slept a continuous six hours, with some clarity.  I’ve been running scared for a few months. I couldn’t pin point the reason for this fear.  And, then, last night I got it.  I have feared failing short of not being compassionate enough.  I hesitate in making decisions believing I will fail another time.  But, Spirit has a way of showing me where Ego loves to manipulate me.  It allows me to process through dreams. It shows me the difference between past beliefs and reality, erasing all illusions that the mind has created.

We have the power to manifest anything we want. We have the ability to attract those things that seem impossible.  It takes the gift of putting aside all pre-judgments, negative beliefs, and sabotage that we’ve been conditioned to live.

I went down a list this morning.  I erased them all.  I have a stack of papers from the filing cabinet (a life of documented crap that serves me nothing now) that I will burn today that need to be thrown back to the earth.  I know something miraculous and big is about to happen.  I feel the giddiness in my stomach. I feel the joy in my heart.  I’ve been here before and I know when blessings are nearby.

Make a list.  Let it go.  Reprogram yourself.  De-clutter your life and make room for blessings.  It’s time.  We need to stand together with a shift in consciousness.  I can’t do this alone. Look at the state of the world and believe that together we can send out the love and peace it needs.  But, it starts with you first.  It starts at home with you manifesting the things your heart desires.  Be honest with your truth because the authentic YOU is dying to live in freedom. If you aren’t happy then we cannot shift a thing.  ALIGN your dreams with the Universe.  I am a trust fund baby of the Universe and so are you with unlimited resources of money, love, happiness, peace, health, compassion, and all that is good.  We got this!  Have a blessed Sunday!

Pulling a Miracle

miracles

Our only car broke down yesterday down the mountain.  Matt was driving slowly when the right side ball joint came off.  Last year around this time the other side came off in a parking lot.  Both times the Divine has been with him in that he wasn’t driving fast or on the highway.  We are always taken care of in the way that suits our lessons and pushes the evolution of survival to expand in the awareness of God.  At the moment of the unfortunate event (and his growing agitation) I asked what I could do for him. His answer was, “Nothing. Unless you can pull a miracle out of your ass!”  And, so I sat at home and began to manifest a miracle.  Funny thing about miracles is that if you don’t specify what you are needing the Universe will give you another miracle that’s been in line waiting for the asking.

A few hours later my 19 year son, who left home a year and a half ago, called me.  He wanted to apologize for everything he ever did: the disrespect, the attitudes, the pushing away, the horrible things said about me, and the disregarding of my parenting authority.  We had not spoken in that time other than when he needed a specific paper or something for whatever he was trying to accomplish.  We had become two strangers.  I expressed to him, through heartfelt sobs, that he will forever be my son.  He needed to go off and find himself.  He needed to experience the rough edges of the world and return with scars from trying.  He needed to live out the illusions of freedom and what it returns when you aren’t careful in your decisions.  That’s the battle of youth entering adulthood.  There are lessons in letting go of our loved ones even when we know they may be hurt by their choices.  I obliged and respected his wishes to be left alone.  Not one day has passed that my prayers did not travel time and space to him.  We spoke for a short while.  I assured him that he could do anything he wanted to and that I would always be here because I was Mom.  I am proud that he is figuring things out.  This was a miracle in waiting.  It had been standing in line until I asked for it to come forward…”just a miracle” and no specifics.

There are nights I lay awake thinking about my six children. I am certain other parents go through the list of questions: What did I not do right? What could I have done differently? Will they look back and realize that love was always given in abundance? Will they have taken into adulthood the knowledge that material things don’t really matter? Questions gather and release. And, as I toss and turn, churning on the mattress, I come to listen to my inner guidance. I have done the best I could do under my limitations and capacity. People will always look inside glass houses, attempt to judge, criticize, and belittle. No one knows your path, the struggles along the way, the many times you had to bulldozed your way to the other side. These thoughts come and go during nights that sleep eludes me. And, then, another miracle appears: as daylight enters the room the Divine visits with assurance. I take deep breaths, thank the Universe for allowing me to redo all the wrongs, and continue learning. I go outside, sit on my deck and enter the church of nature. It is there that I find the peace to comfort my spirit and quiet the many unknowns. I am the best possible version of me and I whisper to God, “Thank you. Thank you. Thank you!” I am whole again.

Asking for a miracle is allowing God to align your wishes with what you deserve.  It is a faithful act of letting go and releasing to the unknown.  It is in believing that we are entitled to the impossible.  Once you know and feel the awareness of illusion in that everything is okay the world opens up to your every desire.  We have no control of what can and will happen.  That’s the miracle.  As Lemony Snicket says, “Miracles are like pimples, because once you start looking for them you find more than you ever dreamed you’d see.”  Allow those little pimples to pop and show you the beauty of your wishful heart.

There is no Passion in Settling

 

Settling seems to be a substantial form of acceptance.  We settle into an un-fulfilling job.  We accept and settle for a mate even though it is not a relationship that sustains us.  We settle into circumstances and stories.  Since children we are somehow taught that once a decision is made the outcome is all there is, so we need to settle.

I remember hearing all the time as a child “settle down.”  If I questioned something I needed to “backup and settle down.”  If I got into an abusive friendship or relationship others would say, “Isn’t that what you settled for?  Deal with it.  You play, you pay.”  Standing back now I realize that the word “settling” is negative.  At least it is for me. It is a synonym for adjusting, conforming and concluding something that is not authentic to my spirit.

I don’t want to just settle.  I want to make mistakes, move on and chose my life.  Settling seems so final.  It feels like an emotional death.  Why settle?  I refuse to just colonize with one particular thing.  Even when I began dating my boyfriend I put it out to the universe that it was a one-time shot.  We would go out and see what happened.  I wasn’t going to just settle into anything unless it enhanced the best of me.  In all of my past relationships I just settled.  I figured it was all that I deserved.  I know what my soul yearns.  It is in moments that I ignore the inkling that “settling” seems to be the only thing paralyzing me to do.  And now seven months later I know we haven’t settled.  We are moving together and expanding in every form of contentment.  No two moments are alike.  We each have our own goals and desires but we can walk the path together without judgment.

As parents, lovers, friends, and professionals we get comfortable and squat into our roles.  I have to ask myself now, what are these roles?  There is also the positive side of the phrase, “settling down” that seems to stem from the idea that we should not be alone.  “So-and-so got married and finally settled down.”  I have heard this so many times.  I often think, did that person just settle into a relationship in order to not be alone?  Or did that person finally find someone they wanted to build a healthy relationship with?  Is that person able to bring out the best qualities in them?  Is that person moving towards similar goals while sharing a path?  Settling down seems like a bunch of hogwash of pressure from a social interaction.

I recently met a woman who stayed in our retreat center.  She came to get married in a barn.  Her story fascinated me.  She and her husband met in high school.  She went off and traveled the world.  He got married and had a family.  He got divorced many years ago.  For the past 10 years he went to every high school reunion hoping to see her.  She never went to a single one of them.  She was too busy enjoying a life of adventure.  Finally she went to one last year.  They saw each other, picked off where they left off as teenagers, and now a year later got married on a barn on top of a mountain.  They are in their late fifties.  She said, “I wasn’t willing to settle down.  I wasn’t going to just settle for anything.  Life is too short.”  Those words pierced something in me about how I feel about settling.  When she was ready she finally explored the options to accept a mate into her life.  No one believed she would ever get married.  It has been most shocking to her.  But, in the midst of that shock she found true love.  She is ready to share, not settle, and keep having amazing adventures with a companion. And, this to me is what embraces a life full of truth and wonder.  Settling…yeah…that’s for those whose imagination is closed and unwilling to take risks.  I want to journey into the unknown and back rather than sit and wait for something better to come my way.  After all the pilgrimage is the best part.

“The biggest human temptation is to settle for too little.” – Thomas Merton

Playground

Your hands guide me
Into the world
Between dark and light
Where I stand alone
Pressed against another
Time falling into yearning,
Desires, gaps of intimate
Dreams created in novels
And you witness
My come and go,
Rise and fall….

Your eyes search
For a confirmation
That a line isn’t crossed
Where we won’t meet
With imbalance,
Rejection, judgment
And pain.
I am gone while you
Pull and push your way
Through this fantasy world.
I don’t think I will ever
Be the same
Because you brought
Play into my ground.