Divine Appointment

A woman called our office today. She immediately recognized she had misdialed. I told her there weren’t such things as mistakes. Perhaps she had a divine appointment. It could be synchronicity. She chuckled and asked, “Pardon me, what is that?”

“Like…perhaps you and I were suppose to meet via the phone!”

I asked where she was. Who she worked for. She told me. We introduced ourselves. She was having an “off day of sorts.” I told her those are usually my favorites because they show me there is magic happening somewhere.

Then she asked, “I’m interested in that divine appointment thingy. Tell me more….”

We spent perhaps 5 minutes on the phone. By the time we were done she shed a few tears. She released some Friday stress. She wanted to hire me as a coach. We laughed. We felt each others’ stories without really sharing. So much beauty happened in such a short expand of time. Just complete yumminess of the human kind.

Sometimes it just takes courage to ask someone how they are doing? Or just listen and acknowledge that they matter. Better yet, it’s just about being kind and open. It’s about saying, “Hey, you, I get you. I know you!”

It doesn’t have to be long. It doesn’t even have to be an exchanging of words. We all need to know that we matter, that someone pauses to hear and see us. We want to know and feel that we aren’t sleep walking through life. It’s like a universal high five!!!

Today is a wrong number. Tomorrow might be another divine meeting of compassion. Be mindful of the interactions that appear around you. Angels come in many different ways. Never miss a chance to learn something valuable. I eat those moments up.

Marie might have gotten something from our chit chat but I was the one who felt blessed for the connection. I was taught a lesson or two. It’s all about the love you send out that’s returned in abundance. It happens everyday. And that’s the magic of serving humanity one person at a time.

Shelter for Strangers with Stories

Every single time I meet someone it becomes an opportunity to open shelter for amazing stories: the dreamers, worriers, artists, parents, children, healers, damaged, scarred, mischievous, adventurous, therapists, creators, believers, artists, doubters, skeptics, searchers, lovers, haters, naturalists, teachers, optimists, poets, spirits…on and on.

We classify ourselves with labels. Who we are has little to do with what we are and what we do. And when you ask someone about themselves they will have categories. We relate to the titles because that’s the way we have been programmed to perceive our status in society.

We’ve been used to judge what we don’t understand or what we fear. That’s how we normally take in the “strange and weird” things that aren’t in accordance with our state of reference. Especially people!

So, I am always deeply surprised at the stories of those who are willing to share their truth. The superficiality skims off, sliding to the sides and the light in their eyes shines brighter than any star.

These are the ones who interest me beyond mysticism. I am always in awed at those souls who do not see their light but make no excuses for who they are. They are certain of their journey. I love them! They teach me something about what I don’t see in myself. The reflectors illuminate the way. I step back and think, “How can I be more like this? How can I find my purpose and truth with certainty?”

If most people knew what was around them, the beings they carry with them: the guides, teachers, and souls who have passed on, they would release so many fears. We are always taken care of and watched over. The paradigms of our belief systems have conditioned us to live in boxes. We have been taught to follow the masses and not ask questions. Many hide behind religions, political views, and narrow-minded prejudices.

I am so thankful for those moments when I meet truth via a new soul.

I forget how laughter, creating, and sharing allow our spirits to soar. This beautiful forum of posting and engaging has helped us find many who understand. Let’s face it…life is freaking hard. Thank you! Thank you for such a beautiful reminder of what is truly important in life: the simplicity of being present among another and interchanging experiences. May you find that one thing that lights your spirit on fire today, tomorrow…forever.

Strangers On A Bench

strangers on bench

(*image from google search)

There was an accident yesterday on a main road coming home from downtown. I must’ve sat through the lights for at least 10 minutes. My three year old was overly tired and grumpy. My stomach was twisting and turning as I hadn’t felt well all day. I wanted to get home…badly. On the other side of the street there were two people at a bus stop. A black skinny man in his 40’s and a chunky white one in his late 60’s. They sat on opposite sides of the bench. I observed their body languages as they were engaged in a really good conversation. Both would laugh and carry on. One would speak while the other nodded and back and forth. They couldn’t have been more polar opposites on the outside. In other words, I couldn’t imagine them even holding a conversation, let alone sharing such delightful-ness that they were laughing out loud. At that moment I stopped Kali and her whining, “Baby girl, love every single person who enters your space.”

“What you say, mama?” She asked to repeat it. I did. She agreed that she loved everyone. Finally she quiet down and I took a deep breath.

The traffic light changed without movement. And then, the city bus stopped, covering my view of the two men. I figured they both got on. It moved on and the white man was left sitting on the bench. He looked happy, shaking his head and smiling alone. He was touched by something, whether it was humor, lightness, acceptance, or life.

This is humanity in moments when no one is looking. Life moves through us. It happens from us, not to us. We have the ability to touch another. We have the gift to love a stranger, regardless of social class, race, gender, or religion. We get to decide every single day what our superhero abilities can do for the world. It doesn’t have to be on a giant scale. You can just entertain another person on a bench waiting on a ride.

Those two souls changed my attitude in a few minutes without even knowing it.

Do good. Be good. Be kind. It takes a few seconds to smile and give another words of affirmation. Today it’s you being the generous giver. Tomorrow it might be your turn to receive. Life is definitely fluid and beautiful and you get to decide how it turns out.

Happy Day!

Bench Connections 

OH MY GAWD, darlings!

 I have had such a sweet joyful afternoon. Matt and I took Kali bug to a nearby park after picking her up at daycare. I was sitting on the park bench when this delicious black woman came with her grandkids. Her little girl looked so much like Kali Rose but with a ton of yummy beads in her hair. And we began to talk. I know, right, what a shocking surprise. 

“Birdie” and I chatted just about everything from poverty to raising her five grandkids…to coming from the gheTTTTTo (she stressed that word so much I had to hold out my hand several times out to make her stop cause I was laughing so hard at her ghetto stories I felt laughter leaking from everywhere). 

Birdie just went on and on about life. She was nonstop in her pursuit of laughter. I hadn’t met someone like her in a bit. She shared stories from all things, including Jesus Christ, potty training, her first visit to a beach a few years ago, her daughters…. I sat there watching Matt walking around with Kali and thinking I should be with them. 

But…but the thing is that Birdie has a ton of faith. Like I could feel her truth and the goosebumps that would come over me. She wasn’t stingy with her joy. Folks like her are my favorite types.  I will collect stories of joy and love and laughter and perseverance over any other kinds of talk. 

Her granddaughter “don’t like dirt. Ain’t no way to get this child in that sandbox. Told her just the other day, ‘Child, when we have to live under a bridge you best get over your dirt phobia…’ and she don’t listen, Millie! These’em kids ain’t got no understanding of struggles…uhmmmm…”

Every so often a persona with gusto comes into my life to add perspective of true happiness. You just know I will squeeze those moments tightly. I have to. They are my teachers. 

If you find a character in your journey that makes you pause and listen and laugh please grab a hold of them. Birdie and I sat there at the end of the visit and held hands. We hugged tightly. Omg like two little girls promising another reunion. She told me where to find her in the evenings at work. I promised I would visit. 

What a magical park time. 

It’s not just swings that are fun. Those park benches share a million stories. All you have to do is sit, wait and listen.  

Soul Connections

This morning I went to visit some clients at several facilities. Most are elderly folks in those places. After seeing a sweet client, a woman in a wheelchair in the hall grabbed my hand and asked if I would visit with her. She mumbled the words a bit incoherently. She said she never gets anyone to visit. She was a bit disoriented and asked if I would sit with her. I believe her name was Janet but she kind of stumbled through it under her breath. So I rolled her down to the nearest place to sit with her. We really just sat there. She didn’t say much but I took her hand and held it in mine. Her eyes looked up at me with tears. I felt the desire to cry with her but held it tightly in my chest. I rubbed her fragile hands against mine. She smiled, I smiled. She just wanted to be acknowledged. She didn’t need anything else but to feel wanted for a few minutes. Stories formulated in that instance as I envisioned her forty years younger, dancing and caring for others.

This is life at the frail moments of vulnerability. I tried to get going but she pulled me back down so I sat for a bit longer. I shared about the sun and how lovely the day was. I asked if she wanted to sit by the window. She nodded no. I told her it was a delightful surprise to meet her. She sobbed a little more. I got up from my chair and got on my knees to see her face. She is lovely. She is precious. I told her this while pulling her chin gently up so her eyes could meet mine. I needed her to feel the awareness of one soul to another meeting for the first time.

Even with dementia souls recognize one another. They are more keen to it because they don’t have all the other static thoughts. I don’t know her history. I don’t know who she is. That really doesn’t matter. What truly is of great importance is to cherish a moment with another who will see you, feel you, and know that you are being loved.

Today…tomorrow…whenever you can, give your soul a gift of truly sitting with a stranger and listen to a story or just hold their hand. I came out of there walking to the car, seeing the mountains in the distance and sobbed. I sobbed for her, for my client who is deteriorating, for all those who sit in wheelchairs or lie alone in a bed waiting for death to arrive. And, then just like that two dragonflies flew around me. Life and its magic. It’s truly a gift and privilege to be here for as long as I need to be. And I promise myself that if I can serve one person every day with kind words or a smile I will do it until I am no longer able to.

Touching each other through kindness

can against guardrail

There is more good than hate in the world. At least I want to believe that kindness overshadows all the bad out there.

Yesterday I was leaving my house to go get Kali at the sitters and there was a man full of tattoo’s sitting on the guardrails across the street. His motorcycle was off. He was looking down at the ground. I stopped, rolled my window down and asked if he was okay or needed anything. This shocked him. His eyes watered. He was somewhat profoundly astonished. Seriously. He said, “Ma’am, just sitting taking a break and smoking my cigarette. But, Ma’am, thank you for stopping and asking. Folks don’t do that these days. They could care less.”

I said to him, “I care and I believe people do care. Everyone is just in their own world.” He came closer to the car, shook my hand and said, “God bless you.” I said it back and I left. He was a kind man. The depth of his soul was beautiful reflecting through his blue eyes. I’m sure because of appearances he intimidates people.

As I drove off something at that moment made me realize the disconnection of who we are and what we are to others. It is terribly sad. Are we living in a world that disregards others but we are consumed by news and world affairs? We say we want to help the world but refuse to take time to help the ones nearby. Are we so self absorbed with our own stories that we don’t care to look around us?

I wasn’t suppose to hear his story although as I drove off I was tempted to turn around, get out of the car and take time to ask his name. The lesson was just in a moment of exchange for both of us. The profound connection of two people acknowledging presence. And, isn’t that all we want? We just want to be seen, heard, and felt.

God provides us with endless opportunities to show compassion and kindness. When it shows up you evolve because of those encounters. Have a blessed day.

Entertaining Angels

entertaining angels

I sit in the Starbucks cafe at Barnes and Noble. A group of mentally challenged sweethearts has come in with a special school. They are going through the magazines discussing the stars on them, the President, the cars, and so many other child-like messages. They are giggling at the pretty pictures. These are folks in their thirties and older. I marvel at their abilities to stay in this moment. They are so-ever present. It’s beautiful! I am reminded of my own children with disabilities. I recall similar scenarios throughout the years. I feel admiration for their courage to walk among others who judge in this world. This is not an easy place to be when “normal” is not only a setting on the dryer.

I am smiling as I look up from writing this and a young man in the group catches my eyes. He shy-fully laughs, looking away, and then returning my gaze. He giggles and shares a secret with another. Such pure innocence. I am in love. I have fallen into the depth of love right now as I continue writing and smiling. I keep glancing and smiling with them. I am in love with each one of them for their vulnerability and coming into this world dependent of others while teaching us about humanity. If we care to learn, they are there giving out important and significant lessons. They are the rare ones who get lost in our society. Today these folks are my most valuable teachers. These loveys have become my mentors for a little while.

I felt misplaced all morning and had to come into town to find clarity, but right now I’ve found my place among Angels. And that’s always such a magical place to be. May you be entertained by pure divine light today. May you be open to all the amazing-ness, delicious-ness, and ever-ness that those around you can provide.

Gratitude for our gifts

homeless cart

Yesterday I met a homeless woman outside of Starbucks (lots of wonderful things always happen to me outside of these coffee shops). She had a supermarket cart with all her belongings near downtown Asheville. I stopped and asked if she wanted a cup of coffee as she was pushing that sucker on the sidewalk. She was sweet and said, “No thank you. I’m good!” I asked her another question just to stop her from moving. “Are you heading to a shelter?” She answered, “I spent the night in one. I am heading to the park. I like to feed the squirrels.” She was a jolly heavy woman probably in her sixties. For a moment her matted gray hair looked like a bird’s nest on her head but I looked closer and saw the most beautiful pins and clips holding it together. I complimented her on them. She began to take one off to give to me. I told her that I couldn’t put anything in my short hair. “Thank you.” I asked if I could give her a hug and she happily extended her arms out so I could move in them. I wished her a nice day. She went off pushing her tiny home up the hill leaving me with such love and joy for her sweetness.

Here is the thing that touches me about someone who has nothing: they are willing to give a part of their nothingness. She was willing to give me a part of her life to make ME HAPPY. She wanted me to feel joy with those clips. I see a lot of this in homeless and mentally ill folks. I see a lot of these selfless acts in those who are used to having little or nothing at all.

SO…when you are moving through this season with the stress of giving or not giving; of having or not having; please realize you have more than you need. It takes nothing to be kind. It takes even less to make someone’s day with a smile, a small chit chat, and a sweet word. These are the folks that teach us how to truly be grateful for those things we think are important. They bring us back to humanity. The world is made of such acts. We forget that we don’t need much to give to another. Heck…just a dollar in coins is sufficient. Carry around granola bars in your car and hand them to the homeless begging on corners…they love them. And if you can’t afford that…then a hug will be just what another needs. Happy holidays, dear friends! May you find the true meaning of a generous heart in a stranger today!

Why Not

I sat drinking coffee alone in the hotel lobby Sunday morning waiting for Matt to finish getting dress. A man about my age says, “Hello!” I look up and return it with a smile. He grabs a cup of coffee as I continue to read my book. He asks, “Rough night?” I answer, “Excuse me? I am on my honeymoon… I had a fabulous night.”
“Oh, congratulations…because of all the glitter in your hair I thought you had been partying.” He says pointing at my head.
“Nah…that’s been there for a while.”
“You have tinsel in your hair and it’s been there for a while?” He asks a bit confused.
“Yeah, it’s fairy hair.”
“What? Fairy hair? But your hair has a lot of other colors too.” He gets closer and sees the blue…
I smile.
“Are you a hairdresser?”
“Nope…just love my hair to be lively like my personality.”
“Why?” he asks confuse.
“Why not?”
This took him aback.
He kept on walking to get food and returned. “Yes, why not? Why are we so rigid, right? Why do we complicate things? I’ve never seen anyone with fairy hair. You are unique, huh?”
I smile without moving from my seat, still holding the book in my hands. “Why NOT are powerful words. They are filled with endless possibilities, not just for hair color or fairy tinsel…but for everything.”
He steps back, smiles…then laughs and thanks me. He leaves with his three kids back up to the elevator. I continue to remember the many “why not’s” that have changed my life. I reminisce over the thousands of choices that those two words have catapult me into new adventures.
We live in a society stuck on perceptions and ideas of what is expected to fit in. When you meet someone who isn’t conforming to the “normal standards” there is immediate judgment. Judgment cannot exist if there is compassion. All it takes is one person to be kind in the midst of a moment of a possible critique. It’s that simple. With a kind smile and a “why not” we say yes to all that the world is used to saying no to….and that’s all that we can give another. Each person is filled with a million “why not’s” that can transform a day, a year and a lifetime. Try it! It’s liberating….!

Clean it up

messy mind

A couple friends of ours came over for dinner last night. We shared stories and this wonderful calmed soul shared about her home intrusion a few years ago. She and her husband were still living in the city and would come up to their cabin in the mountains on the weekends. On this particular afternoon she walked alone into her home and found several people there, a disarray of personal items trashed all over, meth being cooked in her kitchen, a half a pizza still in the oven, and the invasion of strangers going through her stuff while residing in her sacred space. She began yelling and told the folks as they rallied to get out “to start cleaning up!” As she was sharing this story it was hard to conceive. She’s so poised, gentle and collected. But, then again I cannot imagine what goes through anyone in stressful moments. We all react differently from what we think we would when exposed to fight or flight response. I asked her why she made them clean it up even though they took off (she could have been hurt as they were off their minds loaded on drugs). She said that it pissed her off to no end to see her house in that kind of chaos. She’s a very clean and neat woman and I can only imagine the trigger it set off in her. She said that there has only been two times in her life that she screamed the way she did and that was one of them.

When they left last night I thought about my own invasions and intrusions. I thought about how great it would be if I could stop the thoughts in my brain with just a few words, “Hey, clean up this mess. Return the brain to its original format.” After all, our thoughts are in-house mechanisms. They control the body. If I could just step away and consciously stop the chaos, disarray and invasion of negativity, I can win the battle of ego vs. spirit.

We are complex beings. I often think about how hard it is to remain in this body for however long it takes us to learn the lessons we come here for. It’s tough. It’s rough at times. But, I believe that our biggest intruder in our lives are the thoughts that we carry around. We begin circling, chaotically entertaining the nonsense. We cook the addictions and sit back and trash any logical thought out of the area of optimism. We push and shove the spiritual intuitions into a closet and destroy ourselves in the process. We allow the invasion of Ego to take over, sometimes to the point of lying around and feeling the desperation. We call that survival but it’s not.  It’s actually the opposite.  We are giving into the martyr-ship, pity, and self-sabotage that the mind creates to shut us down and separate from our spiritual truth. That’s when we need to say, while snapping our fingers in the air in a very stern manner, “Hey, hey, yo’ no way…clean up right now! This is only a moment, a perception, and shift in consciousness! Get back on track! Stop!!!!”

I believe it’s our human right to allow things to come up and out. It is also our divine right to stop the madness, the intrusions, the invasions of emotions that serve only for control through fear. We are programmed and wired to dive into the negative first through anxiety, expectations, what if’s, and other ways that force us to unravel and feel fractured. No way! It stops here. If and when the next invasion of discomfort arrives…might be 10 minutes from now…I will stop myself, tell the little committee in my head to “clean it up and put things right back to how they were.” I want rainbows and unicorns up there. I want sunshine and happiness.  I don’t need this crap messing up my day and forcing me stand on the edge of insanity when it was created by me all along. Have a blessed one, y’all!