Life experiences had knocked me down. Life had become a series of days of survival. breathing….putting on whatever was clean…saying a prayer for strength and braving my day with a tense smile and a broken heart. Self care wasn’t even a foreign concept, it was no concept at all. It seemed indulgent and something for the privileged. Someone with time, money, affection and care. I don’t know the moment where i realized i had stopped giving myself moments of joy. but it began to dawn on me that i had stopped treasuring the simple things, the pure things in life. the things that truly breathe vitality and a certain humility into our veins that stirs our souls and awakens joy again. i don’t remember the moment this dawned, but i remember the morning i set my phone on the bathroom counter and for the first time had decided my shower was going to become a luxurious moment. as the wonderful sound of the soulful saxophone started to play and the steam started to billow around my little bathroom i felt for the first time in years my blood pressure start to drop and a surge of joy and even a childlike moment where my toes started to wiggle and a little smile flickered across my face at the woman in the mirror that decided in that moment to change her life. i still every morning start my day with jazz in the shower. i highly recommend it.
Light Illuminates and adds the Twinkle. Casts into our consciousness Beauty. The Pure and Lovely. It draws us out of our heads and into the Moment. The humble Chocolate Chip Cookie under its glass dome on the counter looks Decadent with the Light shining from the kitchen window on it. Drawing our eye away from the kitchen sink where dishes have assembled.
The Peace Lily in its Dim Lit Corner who struggles to grow looks Alive and Lush with the Gentle Light caressing its thin fragile leaves.
The warm light from the living room window illuminates the wonderful quiet lesson of Nature. My kitty and dog snuggled up on the little blue couch enjoying the view. Showing us what Unity looks like. Unlikely Friendship at its Best.
A warm beam shining through the little Craftsman style window onto a little five dollar thrift store red porcelain ball makes it look like a Precious Jewel and worthy of a moment’s notice.
An Every Day moment with my Daughter Grace checking her Insta Feed becomes a Moment to Pause and Enjoy her Beauty and Spirit as the light from the window gently shines on her and reminds me of the Treasure she is.
This morning I’m so Grateful for Light. It’s ability to pull me into Reality and see Blessing in the Ordinary. Without saying a Word. So of course my mind goes to my Light Friends. Who just being in their Grace remind me of Beauty. Of Joy. Of Blessing. Without saying a Word.
Thank You Light People. Thanks for being Light.
I Love You
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I treasure it. I say it slowly. Allowing the compliment to seep into my psyche. The lady who coordinated my class I taught on Monday said my class was ‘insightful’. Sometimes when I have a victory or a success, I go back and tell my young little self. Waking up from her drowsy sleep under her Holly Hobby quilt. I whisper in her soft warm ear. “You did something great!” “You taught a class, can you imagine….dear heart!” I imagine my heart as a little girl taking courage from it. Knowing her life would have a purpose. That she would have a story to tell. Something to share to inspire and help others. I feel so humbled. And thankful. Thankful for every experience of desperation that made me tap into Potential. Every darkened lonely path that taught me Faith. Made me cling to Hope. That opened my eyes to Possibility. I think of the word Vulnerability. Brene Brown, the author and public speaker, helps us so much to understand the power of it. In order to move out of our comfort zones and into our purpose, we must embrace Vulnerability. Stepping out onto the ledge. The Ledge of Uncertainty. Maybe I’ll sink. Maybe I’ll swim. Either way I will grow and evolve and that excites me. If we care too much about what others think or their opinion, we never will. If we have something that burns within us, that’s our purpose. My daughter Helen said after I made her and her fiancee sit through a dry run class, “Mom, you have a heart beat. So you have a purpose. I think you’ve discovered yours.” She has no idea how much I loved her and her sweet introspective heart at that moment. I repeat her words to myself many times a day. Everyone of us has a heart beat. Everyone of us has a purpose. Love you all.
I have a dream of being a ballet teacher to children one day. I see myself with my grey hair in a little ballerina bun bending low to hear the whispered requests of darling children. So one beautiful sunlit evening last summer after work, found me walking down 8th Avenue to my first ballet class at Alberta Ballet. I really don’t dance beyond myself with one of my children as hostages. My dog Charlie dances with me quite happily. So it is with anticipation and a lot of drummed up courage that I find myself making this happy trek. I meet one of my acquaintances from Nordstrom who worked in shoes along the way. He’s waiting for his taxi. I tell him where I’m going. He said with a flourish, “Of course, you’re a ballet teacher! How did I not pick up on that!” He clearly is a soothsayer, I say to myself. No, he is just ridiculously kind. But it did set me on my journey with a bit more confidence, strengthening my resolve that seemed to grow weaker with each step. Heartened, I press the buzzer to be let in. Clutching my gear tightly under my armpit. My finger was definitely trembling. My teacher is perfect. She’s delicate and blonde with even a heavy french accent. My heart is thrilled. I look around. There’s women and girls stretching. There is even a woman waiting to play the piano as we dance. I’ve never plied before. Ever. I didn’t even try it in the mirror before I left the house. Talk about winging it. But I’m excited. Long ago I lost my need to appear skilled. I just was so happy to be there. Participating. Enjoying this moment in time. It was a magical hour. I plied. I danced. I adored the rhythm of my wonderful teachers voice as we all dipped and twirled. It was such a pure expression of beauty. I’m even more impassioned to become a ballerina teacher to little children. For I feel, it takes more love and commitment to building their confidence then skill. But for now, I will build my skill. And i will learn to build my own confidence by each day stretching myself out of my comfort zone. I hope you will too today. Love you all.
Some would say I grew up privileged. That word bothers me. I did grow up privileged but not because I had a lot of material things or because it was a picture of unblemished family bliss. I grew up privileged because of the simplicity of our lives. Here are some of my simple joys. My mom loved hard ice cream. We would seek out hard ice cream whenever we were on the “long to a child” road trip to our cottage every weekend. I to this day have a love for hard ice cream and have found places wherever I have lived or traveled that sells wonderful ice cream. My favourite is sold in the Kawaihae Harbour on the Big Island of Hawai’i. They make the most wonderful “Rocky Road” with locally grown and toasted coconut, macadamia nuts, and big chunks of chocolate and marshmallow. Another simple joy was my mom and dad had a love for antiques. Many a Saturday I stood in the damp air of a little farm, hearing the familiar chatter of the locals and the auctioneer chanting in the background and and feeling the excitement and stir of a good deal. My favourite Saturday is estate sales to this day, and have stood with americano in hand first and second in line and found so much comfort meandering around someones home. Enjoying the atmosphere of others who enjoy the same hobby and treasuring the untold sacred memories behind every little item I would lovingly hold. Another simple joy was in the springtime touring the beautiful nurseries with my mom picking out her silver dusty miller and her orange and red marigolds that she loved to plant in front of our home. On a day like today where its -10 degrees I often find myself after errands are done or find myself ” not really in the area but close enough” heading down to Sunnyside Nursery to smell the air and walk amongst the pretty plants for a moment and let it transport me to a warmer clime. These moments when I allow myself these simple joys is when my heart feels whole and I feel a connection to this beautiful earth and those I enjoy it with. Here’s to a weekend of simple joys for all of us!