WEEKLY STRETCH 4-27-17 ~ Karmic Connection

We met for lunch yesterday. Three women who have known each other for about forty years and have been through the rollercoaster ride that we call life together, still navigating that ride all these years later. We meet for lunch for our birthdays and when we just feel the need for the deep comfort of our special connection.

I remember when our lunch date conversations were all about our little ones. We would talk about potty training, nursery school, pregnancies, husbands, neighborhood gossip. Along the way, the conversations gradually changed. Suddenly we were sharing stories about public school and shopping for a new home. As our children got older we would talk about their social lives and their grades, our decisions to go back to work or college, conflicts with friends and family, and the usual ups and downs of life in our 30’s.

After all these decades together, the conversation has shifted and changed in nature many times. From who is signing up for tennis classes to who needs cortisone shots in their shoulders; from what color to paint the kid’s bedrooms to whether active adult communities are the way to go; from hot pants and short skirts to elastic waists, comfortable shoes and menopause. We have walked alongside each other through turbulent storms and joyful celebrations. Empty nests, divorces, illnesses, and tremendous losses; bar mitzvahs, weddings and grandchildren. My friends Linda and Beth have been there for me through the best and worst moments of my adult life. They stuck by me during my “second adolescence” after divorce, celebrated with me when I fell in love and married my Twin Flame, supported me through the many years of my mother’s Alzheimer’s Disease, mourned with me as I lost both my parents, and gave me the strength to keep going through all the twists and turns of this life we have shared year after year. I hope they would say that I’ve given them the same support and love through the peaks and valleys of their lives too. Both of my friends are managing elderly parents who are not well. Beth lost her husband to pancreatic cancer a little over a year ago and Linda had major surgery in December. Life is moving along for us, meandering its way hither and yon, and we three are still holding onto each other as it does.

I feel tremendously blessed to have these two women in my life. They have been my anchor and kept me from drifting away from center more times than I care to admit. We’ve all grown and changed from the twenty somethings we were when we met. The karmic bond that brought us together has strengthened with each passing year of this lifetime and I know without doubt that it transcends time and space.

STRETCH: Take note of the people who inhabit your heart and who have shared the good and bad times with you. Make sure they know that you see them and appreciate their place in your life.

NOTE: I will be attending an Infinite Possibilites Train The Trainer Conference in Santa Fe next week. Hopefully I’ll be have some time to write my weekly stretch message. The week after I will be posting from Sedona, AZ, our home away from home and our place of pilgrammage, retreat and rest. See you soon.

Weekly Stretch 4-19-17 ~ Home

Our Front Door – photo by Franne Demetrician

Two weeks ago, we learned that the person who owns the house we rent will be selling it early next year when our lease is up. That means we will be moving. We are quite pleased with this news since we have been having the “stay or go” conversation for the last few weeks. The decision was made for us and we are ready to respond.

We have lived here for two years and nearly three months. When we arrived we were like the walking wounded. We had been through one of the most difficult times of our lives and were blessed that this house was available to catch us when we needed a place fall. It served as a warm cocoon in which we could heal and allowed us to emerge whole and able to move forward. It has been our home. During our time here we have made huge changes and life-changing decisions. We’ve grown through many challenges including my recent illness. We have learned more about ourselves than we could ever have imagined. This time has been the perfect respite from the drama and trauma that preceded our move here, and the perfect opportunity to prepare for what is next.

Moving presents tremendous opportunity for cleansing. I’ve already begun to evaluate our “stuff” and can see how much we brought with us that we no longer want or need. So much of what lives in our garage and storage unit is connected to an old narrative that is no longer part of our reality. Closets are filled with things that haven’t been moved or touched since the day they were placed. We are ready to downsize, this time for real. My husband says we are ready to “right-size” and I think that is much more apt since we know that so much of what we’ve been holding onto is no longer right for us.

We have found the place that will be our next home and are envisioning how life will be for us. Our next move will be easier, less stressful, welcome and refreshing. We will arrive at our new home less encumbered, free from the weight of the past and wide open to the promise of the future.

As I was walking with Sophie this morning I thought about how much I love the mature trees that line the streets where we live. We won’t have these big trees when we move since it is a newly built complex with little baby trees yet to begin their voyage to adulthood. Just then I heard a wonderful melody coming from one of the branches. A bird was serenading me with its delightful song. I stopped and listened to the sweet sound and enthusiastically thanked the bird for sharing itself with me. What came to me then was that birds will sing to us wherever we live. Trees grow too and I love the idea of being close to fledgling trees as they take solid root and grow taller and stronger each year. The beautiful birdsong spoke to me of joy, delight, and freedom. I love that we have the freedom to move on, to begin anew without looking back.

We are blessed to have the luxury of time to sift through our stuff, remove the excess and embrace the change gracefully. We know we have earned it. We are very grateful for the home that caught us as we fell and embraced us these last two-plus years. More to come.

STRETCH: Think about your home and how it makes you feel. Take some time to appreciate the roof over your head, the safe place that shelters you from the storms.

Happy Easter ~ 4-14-14 ~ Stretch

Today is Good Friday. I love that a day is called “good” and, while most of us know why today is called Good Friday specifically, I think every day has the potential to be good. In fact, I’m consciously affirming that my days are good. Upon awakening each day, as soon as I’m aware that I am back in my body from sleep, I say, “Thank you for bringing me back to my body. It’s a good day.” This has been my practice for many years. It’s especially poignant now for a million reasons, not the least of which is that I love that I’m in a body, especially this one.

The season we have entered is life-affirming. Today I’m reflecting on memories of springtimes past. Some of the memories are happy, some bittersweet. Regardless, every memory is infused with a sense of newness and hope. I find that coming out of the heaviness and darkness of winter my awareness is sharp and little gets passed my notice. Yesterday I saw the sharp green points of my beautiful hostas poking out of the ground, more blooms are showing up on trees – you know the white ones that when they begin to fall look like snowfall in warm sunshine, and tiny little green buds are more and more apparent on the trees outside our door. Gaia is awakening and I’m feeling the urge to break out my camera and take myself on an “artists date” to the park or a garden. This year more than any other I want to be in it, up to my neck in hope, growth, flowers, dirt and new life.

Today, on this very good Good Friday, my heart is full and hopeful. Easter Sunday marks a magical moment in time that reminds us that there is life after life and that we can emerge from what seems like dismal darkness into radiant light. It says to us that while there may be dark clouds around us, beyond the clouds the sun is shining, always shining. It affirms to us that there is always hope and that we are never alone.

Happy Easter beloveds.

STRETCH: Get outside and feel the Earth under your feet and the sunshine on your face. Don’t miss it.


Spring Pink

It’s April, complete with that wonderful smell in the air that follows spring rain, tiny buds on trees and shrubs, and early growth peeking up from the muddy ground. What a treat! I love to write about this time of year because it is ALWAYS new to me. Each spring I notice something I didn’t notice before. And this spring seems even more precious and new in the aftermath of a truly difficult winter.

I am reveling in witnessing Mother Nature’s process unfolding around me. The first thing I noticed last week was how the pot of chives parked just outside my kitchen door is alive and growing. Yesterday I heard the familiar sound of landscaping equipment clearing the way for new growth. Sophie and I had a wonderful stroll, sunshine on our faces and bounce in our steps. Today, after shopping for Passover, I noticed trees with tiny pink blooms just beginning to show themselves.

We will be hosting Passover in our home, an event I look forward to every year. Our family is diverse and bringing us all together to celebrate freedom from oppression and rebirth is one of my favorite things. My mother always hosted Passover and I have the privilege of carrying on this tradition in my home. Easter and Passover are perfectly timed this year which makes it even more meaningful.

I am focused on renewal, revitalization, and rebirth. The awakening Earth beneath my feet is awakening cells in my body that have been asleep these last few months, healing them and refreshing them with each passing day. I envision promise ahead for our country and the world; a reawakening of sleeping consciousness. I have hope for the future despite what we think we see.

Passover and Easter are about the promise of freedom, the gift of life, and our connection to something much greater than ourselves. This spring more than ever I am humbled and grateful to be here to witness the unfolding miracle.

To mark this beautiful and transformative season I offer this metta: May all be well, may all be safe, may all be free, may all be at peace.

STRETCH: Stop and enjoy the beauty of the unfolding changes in your inner and outer landscape.