Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Wednesday Wish (90); Through Fear Into Flight

Play Crack The Sky
photo by sarah allegra via flickr

I met a cocoon.
There. Outside.
Hidden between the flowers. On the underside of a wet- heavy cluster of leaves. It trembles. It aches to shed its layers, to free its newly imagined wings, to release the butterfly within.
But … it waits.
Weather-resistant, hidden from sight, wrapped in layers of protection, Cocoon insists on sheltering its precious cargo, its treasured, long-awaited dreams.

I met a cocoon.
Here. Inside.
Hidden beneath my heart. On the other side of have-to’s. It trembles. It aches to shed its layers, to free its newly imagined wings, to release the butterfly within.
What are these layers that keep my wings tucked away, that keep me safe and nurse my fears?
Why do I forget?
To live my long-awaited dreams.

I met a cocoon.
There. Within.
Buried behind your eyes. Caught unawares. It trembles. It aches to shed its layers, to free its newly imagined wings, to release the butterfly within.
People resistant, hidden from sight, wrapped in layers of protection, your cocoon insists on sheltering your precious cargo, your treasured, long-awaited dreams.

When did you forget?
How to swallow your fear.
When did you forget?
How to fly.

For it is who you are
It is who we all are

Winged dreams
Sheltered by our protective cocoons
Aching to remember
How to swallow fear
And fly

*          *          *

My Wish for You?

To remember.

To stretch those wings
Through fear
Into flight.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Wednesday Wish (89); Surrender

found via facebook, artist unknown, please contact me for credit

There’s a chill in the air. Her body is tight. When she takes a breath, the air stays up high, never reaching her belly but racing around in place somewhere behind her throat and at the top of her chest. She can’t do anything about it. It’s just the way it is. Every year at this time. With the first hints of Fall.

As she walks, she listens to her heels on the sidewalk. They sound hollow. Unless she steps on a leaf or a tuft of weed sneaking out between the cracks. Then they sound muted, muffled, their hollowness softened by nature.

Softened by nature. What a funny thought, she thinks. And there’s her breath again, still stuck behind her throat, at the top of her chest. She looks up, wondering if she can shake it lower like a long-necked goose trying to shimmy down its food. And when she does, she sees it.

Dark and foreboding, hovering with weighted promise, and inviting, no begging her to take out her umbrella. And fast.

She rummages through her bag and finds it without a second thought. Always prepared. Always ready for the worst. She smiles at her cunning. Softened by nature? Ha. Aware of its tricks.

She pops open the umbrella.
And the wind begins to howl.
To howwwwlllll….

She holds on tight. No way this black hover cloud is going to turn my umbrella inside out. It’s her favorite. The red one with the white polka dots that goes with everything.  And, not just that, she hates getting wet. So she holds on tighter, angling it just right—into the wind—the way her grandmother once taught her. It’s her against the black hover cloud. And she’s got one up on it. She’s aware of its tricks.

Did it see her smirk?
Did it hear her dare?
Or was it happenstance?

Definitely not happenstance.
This was orchestrated.

That black hover cloud let its wind howl so hard and fierce that it lifted that red umbrella and its owner right into the air, finessed it so nicely that not even a single prong got bent out of shape.

She screamed.
And refused to let go.
She fought.
And fought hard.
She wasn’t going to let it win.
This was personal.
And she had the upper hand.

She pulled and finagled, and sweat beaded up on her forehead and under her arms, and when she wanted to cry she scowled instead, gritting her teeth and making her body as weighted as she possibly could.

Let me down! She screamed.
I didn’t ask for this!
Give me back my simple walk to work.
Give me back what I had planned!

But that black hover cloud didn’t care what she had to say. Instead, it took her higher and higher, further and further away from anywhere she had ever planned on going. Further and further away from any thing she had ever known.

Until finally, she took a breath. A real breath. A deep breath. The kind that takes the air right down into your lowest belly. Yep…she did one of those. And boy, did it felt good. So good that she did it again. And that one relaxed her so much, she lost her hollow shoes. They fell right off. And her bag of remedies? It fell, too. Swirled like pigeon poop all the way down, down to the ground with a plunk. And you know what she did then? She laughed. As she flew through the air, surrendering to the winds of her life, no longer attached to everything she had planned, but now, finally, just enjoying the ride, she laughed. And laughed and laughed and laughed.

*          *          *

This week my Wish for you is to surrender to those things that sweep you away, unexpectedly, from what you had planned. For your day, for your week, for your life. To surrender to a force bigger than yourself, to the wisdom of the universe, and to trust, that where it is taking you, is much more beautiful than anything you ever could have designed for yourself. For when we surrender, we see with new eyes, hear with new ears, and live lives driven by inspiration, not fear. By wonder not expectation. By faith in the magic of life. And maybe best of all, we grow older with joy, with happy … with laughter.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Wednesday Wish (88); The Scent of Home

spring, bodypainting art by johannes stotter

Your feet crunch gravel as you take slow and thoughtful steps along the narrow, meandering path. It’s not the trees concealing what lives just beyond that begs you further, nor is it the sound of the sea, its gentle lapping soothing away the rough edges of your day. No, you are pulled along this path like a magnet to her source, something deep within, begging you near.

When you finally see the house you realize you were holding your breath and you let it out, with a long, heartfelt sigh … of relief. But why? Why are you relieved? You have never been here before.

Or have you?
Did you forget?

You take off your shoes and leave them on the wood planked porch, your toes reveling in their newfound freedom. Then your eyes and your fingers, and that ache within your chest, together they express that magnet-longing again, so you knock, and the door creaks open. “Hello?” you say, “Anybody home?”

But all you hear is the beating of your own heart and the wind through the trees and the gentle lapping of the sea. And yet, you tremble.

Rays of sunlight trickle into the main sitting room, the rest of the house lit with soft warm lights, the kind that remind you of the hue of a candle in a cozy space on a cold winter night. You smile. You let your eyes take in everything else … the rich colors of the walls, the way the couch and the pillows beg to be enjoyed, their fabrics and weaves igniting something secret inside. And then you see the sculptures made of wood and stone and how flowers seem to find themselves in more places than your eyes can even see—in vases, along bookshelves, in front of paintings and hanging from aged wooden beams. You feel your body soften, your shoulders loosen, and your voice oozes out an ‘ahhh’.

Your fingers run themselves along the spines of every book you have ever loved and more that you didn’t know you longed to read, their titles giving you new thoughts, ideas, sparkles inside your chest. Their leather and paper spines feel smooth and kind and take you back to when you weren’t afraid to be vulnerable because you were safe. Safe and happy within your walls.

You lift your head, for your nose breathes in a lovely scent. It’s vaguely familiar but you can’t place it. A perfume? Something baking? Or is it a memory with no form at all? You walk forward, toward it, and just as you do, a figure appears from around the corner, her arms carrying a tray, a tray filled with delights, devourables, delicacies that barely have a name…

You are Home.

*          *          *

How do you feel when you near the place you live? Does your body harden or does it soften? Do you think of all the things you have forgotten to do, or does your mind release the worries and put on a warm, peaceful shawl? Do you shed or do you pack on … requirements, rules, heavy? When you return to that place you call home, does it really feel like home? Or is it a mere house, a place you just live.

A true home is a place we feel safe. Safe enough to shed our weights and worries, to shed our layers accumulated throughout our days. It is a place of colors and textures and gifts that brighten up our eyes and give new life to our dreams. A true home gives our spirit wings. A house merely contains our body.

My Wish this week for you, is to create, for yourself, a greater, more soulful haven within which to live—to transform house, into Home.

What makes you feel safe?
What encourages you to shed your layers and to reveal your raw Self, your deeper You, your vulnerable You?

No need to think big, begin small. Is it a color, a softness that your fingers love to touch, is it a scent or a sound, or a combination of many? Tune in to your senses—the few, the largely hidden—that whisper you are safe. Go there, walk along that crunch gravel path, let your senses guide your way, your heart acting as your rudder, your soul as your sail. 

Listen … listen … listen for the scent of Home.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Wednesday Wish (87); Body Speak

photo by igor zenin

She loved to soar, to feel her long hair tickle her back as she dreamed herself winged and free. When things hurt, she would sing a little tune and take herself away, away with her imagination—anywhere her wings dared soar, just not there, in the moment, where it hurt the most.

But her body?
It lingered behind,
weighing her down.
Her hips,
They swelled

“Ground yourself. We need you here on earth. Face your fears. Please…!” They seemed to yell as those hips they grew and grew and grew, now too big for yet another pair of pants,  “Please share your beauty with the world, not just the heavenly skies. We need you here! Only then will we stop trying to ground you, only then will we stop our speak.”

And when she finally listened,
she lost all that weight.

Her friends asked her how she did it, to share her diet
And when she answered, she left them all confused
For what she said was simple, 
she just listened 
to her body

*          *          *

Every time he walked into that house, his legs began to ache. But he didn’t listen. He thought life was just a lot quieter in that house, the one at the end of the cul-de-sac with the beauty bark and the vinyl siding, and the wife he thought he loved, so quiet that he only noticed the aching in his legs...there. Work was loud. Restaurants and bars were loud. Even friend’s houses were loud. He felt the aches in his legs only at home simply because it was quiet there, right?

So his body had no choice but to speak a little louder.

He loaded up on potassium and magnesium since someone said he must have been vitamin deficient. Then he took up jogging, because maybe he wasn’t exercising enough. But still, every time he walked back into that house, the one at the end of the cul-de-sac, with the wife he thought he loved, his legs, they began to ache.

Then one day, he got into his car and drove away. And he noticed, for the first time, that his legs, they didn’t ache anymore. So he turned around and drove back home. And there in the garage, he noticed, even with his music blaring, that the aching had returned.

“Get out, move on, let us carry you away!” they seemed to yell to this man who seemed as if he could not hear.

But he did that day in the garage.
He listened.
To his body speak.
And saved himself
from a life
that no longer served
his soul.

*          *          *

Our bodies speak—sometimes quietly, sometimes loudly, but they always, always have a voice and they only speak for us to hear. My Wish for you this week, is that you begin to listen more closely to your own body speak. How does it react to this setting or that person or the sugar in that spoon? Why does it hurt then and tingle there, and are you really sure it’s the shoes and not a message from your knees? Regardless of how old you are, when you listen to your body speak you learn more about who you are not just as a person but as a soul, a soul on a journey. You learn that you are not first a body. You are first a soul. And as a soul, your path is much, much bigger than any diagnosis or pill can ever address. Truth is, your body is your ally and every day, every hour, every moment, it is guiding you with the unceasing, all encompassing wisdom—of your soul. Honor it by listening to your body speak, and it can do nothing less than honor You.