Parting words from one of my wisest friends as I left for Bali, “open your heart, lead with it, be in your heart, this is what you need”.
I’ve been “in my head” so long, I could hardly contemplate what it means to open my heart. I’m kind, isn’t that enough? I mean, I try to be kind. Occasionally, I’m not. But it’s my intention… I’m a thinker, I think things through… seven different ways. I analyze every possible option and second guess every decision…. at least 4 times.
Except this, Bali was a move from the heart. It makes no sense in any way except the heart.
When I got here, I see what she meant. You can’t NOT open your heart in Bali. Mine just cracks wide open at least once a day. I’ll just be walking along, and smell the incense and see the most beautiful flower dropped on the sidewalk and something happens to my heart. It’s like a little quail egg in there with the most fragile shell, and the smallest move sometimes will shatter that shell and spill my heart out in the open. It usually ends up flowing out my eyes after it’s made my chest all warm and heavy. And there I am, a white tourist woman, walking down the hairpin corner in the grass with vines hanging down and touching my head, single file with my family, sobbing.
At least now that we’ve been here two weeks, the kids are used to it. They just hug me and keep walking. It was quite startling to them the first few times it happened.
You know, I used to be an “open heart” person. I spent my youth with a heart like one of those liquid filled pieces of chewing gum. You know the little squares of sweet, firm, gum that when put in your mouth explode with an oversweet syrup? Yea, like that. Only not so firm on the outside. I spent my youth crying tears of heartbreak, that no one liked me, that I stubbed my toe, that there wasn’t enough kindness in the world. I cried a LOT. And it wasn’t just crying, it was heartbreak every time.
So I guess, over the years, this shell grew and grew over that little bit of liquid goo in there. And I forgot what it felt like to let it spill out into the world. That although it hurts sometimes, there is goodness in it. There is truth in just being who you are and feeling how you feel without worry that others will judge you for it.
Here I am, vulnerable, open heart. Crying tears of joy every day. The little shell gets thinner and thinner as it cracks open each day. But it hurts less. The joy feels like white light from heaven, invading every pore of my body. And it is enough. I am enough. It is good.
This is what I want to teach my children, not to be tough and create a shell that covers all of your preciousness so it doesn’t get hurt. I want to be brave, and show them how to let it spill out. The joy is so intense, and yes, when heartbreak comes it will be intense too. But better to live a life of intensity and joy, then a safe, overthought life without it.
Create your sunshine life, by letting the goodness spill out. Figure out how to open your heart. It could change absolutely everything…
It’s been awhile… I’ve been digesting life. Slowly.
I wish I could tell my daughter things to make her life easier. I wish that I could sit down with her and catch her eye and she would hear me. Our relationship isn’t quite like that. She doesn’t enjoy eye contact and sitting still for more than 4 seconds is a very, very challenging task. So heart to hearts don’t come easy.
I wish I could tell her that it’s all about Love. Everything. Everywhere. We go through so many years of pain and drama over wishing people would love us, love us more, love us better. We change who we are, what we think, what we dream, so maybe people will love us more. We yell and scream and hurt others, because we’re AFRAID they don’t love us. We miss so much magic, and beauty, and wonder within ourselves while we’re trying to make sure someone sees us in our glory.
If I could just teach her she’s amazing, enough to fill her tank…. If she could find that confidence and love herself and her brilliant ideas and her frustrating quirks and worry less about the world …. it would be a sweeter life.
Yet, after 37 years of doing the same myself, it’s a hard habit to break. Schoolyard whispers still claw at the back of my thoughts, should I have said that? worn that? done that? I mean, I’m better than I used to be. After frantically asking myself several times I can usually actually remind myself that it doesn’t matter now. But the first voice is the one of doubt. How much practice it takes to change that. I wish, I could help her find that sweet voice while she’s young, and hear it first.
Because if you are truly comfortable with loving yourself to pieces, and you act from love towards others, what else is there?
Create your Sunshine Life – by Loving yourself to pieces first. xoxo
I just finished the most delicious new book. Outrageous Openness, by Tosha Silver. You must stop everything and pick it up. Audible or Reader version, either will work for this book, so download it, stop at a bookstore, whatever you must do.
I attended the recent Hay House event “I Can Do It, Austin” and after many of the speakers referenced the book and the author, I just had to put it to the top of my reading list.
Every page is like warm water running over me, soothing my soul. It’s an interesting blend of LOA, Religion, Angels, Faith, and God. Mostly, I embrace the Openness and wild, unending, blind faith. I love the quote above and whisper it to myself daily when my heart starts racing, worrying, stressing, or trying to figure out the answer to every question that could be asked. I have over-thought everything for years. I’m a statistics girl, an analyzer of all potential outcomes, a weigher of pros and cons. I vaguely remember a “me” that was wild and open and free. A girl that took roadtrips in the middle of the night, and moved to new cities without concern. I applied to jobs confidently that I had no experience for, and I met new people of all thoughts and beliefs and enjoyed debate without concern of what someone thought of my opinion.
At some point, I started worrying more about making the right decision, than enjoying making the wrong ones. I stopped trusting the universe to provide Divine guidance and blessings and started trying to micro-manage my life. To force decisions. To out-think everything.
Maybe all I needed was to remember to let go. Let the Bohemian Gypsy girl inside of me romp and play and trust that there are miracles all around me at all times. That I am always protected. That everything will work out for the absolute best, and I don’t have to try to make it. I just need to breathe. And Love. And trust.
Create your Sunshine Life. Be outrageously open. Trust the Universe. Romp wildly. Laugh loudly. Dance in the streets, and know it will all be ok. There are miracles all around.
Ahhhh, I’m finally back at the keyboard. Long trip. I try to not write until I can say something positive… like the childhood phrase “if you can’t say something nice, don’t…” it’s like it imprinted!
So. I was having a hard time digging deep. Stopped somewhere along the road at a pitstop called Feeling Sorry For Myself. Then I talked to a friend with a similar condition. Only worse. We were both taken from our families for procedures. We were both alone and afraid and in pain. But she endured a procedure that I think it would be unfair to even begin to find words to describe. I mean, like 1000 times worse than what I went through. And you know what? she was so Strong and So Brave, she was checking in on me.
And that is just enough to pull my sorry butt out of the garbage and get back to dreaming. ~thank you~
When nothing goes the way you think, or hope, or pray that it will. When you manifest and journal, and eat right, and meditate, and you still don’t get your way what do you do? Do you throw in the towel? Get Angry? Feel Sorry for yourself? Check out? or Do you put on your big girl pants and get back in the fight? Find your faith. Locate a tiny spark of hope hidden deep, deep, down in the dark. Ask yourself what kind of life do you want to live? What kind of person do you want to be?
I have a friend that has been in a wheelchair for 7 years. SEVEN years. Young girl. Freak accident. And you know what, she’s not bitter. She’s breaking new territory learning to walk again! My friend got a shunt this week, endured hours upon hours of torture, testing, surgery, only to find out that it’s not working. Back to square one. And she’s holding me up. Geez.
So when you step back and put it like that. I guess it’s time to peel off the yuck. Scrub the self pity from my pores. Stand up and fight another fight.
Doesn’t that just feel much nicer? It’s like a sigh for your soul. Yes thank you. I’d rather dream my improbable dreams laying down, than stand up and get lost in the rat race and forget the hope. Maybe this is MY reset button. Maybe great things are coming. Maybe, just maybe, I’ll look back on this experience and smile at the memory of someone I met or something I learned along the way.
In the meanwhile, I’m back to bed. Spending time on my Pinterest dream boards. Deciding exactly how big and how Improbable I should dream. It’s more fun that way.
Create your Sunshine Life. Let yourself dream the improbable, a treasure, something you love. Go ahead. It’s ok, let loose.
I’ve been doing a lot of thinking lately about the power of love over fear. As someone that has spent a good deal of my adult life working in Marketing and Advertising, it always stops me dead in my tracks when I see an interesting new marketing strategy. I stop, contemplate, assess, and my statistical mind goes crazy analyzing possible results, trends and outcomes. I get excited and love to see a new branding strategy, technique, or someone thinking “outside the box”.
It probably doesn’t come as much of a surprise to you that I’m frequently disappointed in the “end game” of advertisers. So many brilliant minds at work with so much opportunity to impact the world, and unfortunately, the trend is to build fear and tell us we are less. But, I feel like this is only the trend in the marketplace. I believe in the good of the human spirit. I believe that we all mean well. We just get a little lost, mixed up, confused.
Lately, I can’t help ponder this question:
What would the moral structure of our country look like if our brilliant advertisers, marketers, and product promoters promoted love first? What if they sold us products by reminding us to love ourselves for our exquisite perfection – rather than despise ourselves for our human qualities. What if we started promoting public service announcements displaying kindness, love, laughter, joy?
How would it change the mindset of the people? How would it change the dreams of our children?
What would become possible with a simple shift in the constant programming we receive? Yes, we can find positivity – but you have to make an effort. Which means that the people that choose to find love, peace, joy, usually do. If you look, you can find beautiful ideas, images, thoughts, for free on the internet and in the world around you.
But what if it never occurred to you to look? What if all you can do is breathe? Most households still spend many hours each week watching TV, what are the themes they are being exposed to? Last time I checked it was pretty challenging to find something uplifting to watch on network TV. Most shows are either SVU quality (i.e. glamorized rape and murder) or Reality based (i.e. let’s all make fun of someone and laugh at another’s weakness, insecurities, imperfections).
What does that do to the way we speak to ourselves? To the world we expect to see each day?
How quickly could we actually change the world if we changed our programming? Would you guess that Thailand is light years ahead of the U.S. here? Check out this commercial. I love it so much. I love it so very, very much. But mostly, I love the person that came up with the idea. I love the creative team that dared to dream. I love the person that spoke up and did something different. This concept probably started with someone being brave enough to risk rejection in exchange for something beautiful.
What do you think?
Today, commit to beauty. Commit to praise yourself. Allow yourself to love every person you meet especially those that are most unkind. But most of all, notice the little voice in your head when it tells you that you aren’t enough. And remind it that you are. You are a good person. You are perfection. You are love. You can change the world.
Create your sunshine life with Love. Tell Fear to piss off. We got this. And we have each others back. And life is so truly beautiful.
So, in my ongoing efforts to single handedly support Hay House Publishing, I just broke down and read “Dying to Be Me” by Anita Moorjani. I have to admit I have mindfully avoided this book since I became aware of it, a couple of years ago. If you somehow missed it, it’s about a woman who nearly died of cancer, had a near death experience, remembered it in great detail, and returned to her body to miraculously heal from Stage 4 cancer in days.
I avoided it, I guess, because I thought it’s only for people that have cancer, or have been deeply touched by cancer. I had no intention of getting on a first name basis with cancer. I’ll keep it at arms length, thank you very much.
However, after repeatedly hearing of this book (and as I seem to have enough time on my hands these days) I decided to read it.
HOLY CRAP. It’s mind-blowingly amazing. The first third of the book talks about cancer, how sick she was and how horrible it was. The second two thirds were incredible. Beautiful. And I can’t get them off my mind.
It is the single most profound, exquisite, expression of the purpose of life. To be ourselves, to be joyful, to be complete un-ending unwavering love. That’s her explanation for how she cured her cancer, she was just love. When you remember that, it’s easy, or so she says.
She talks about our utter perfection, grace, love and beauty. She says its all of us. Every single one. We are perfect in every way. Not Ego driven perfect, that is hiding insecurities and pain. Real, true, universal, perfection. And when we remember that and love ourselves for everything that we are, the seas part, illness heal, our dreams come true and maybe… just maybe… this is actually heaven.
Well I love it. It’s about damn time someone started preaching about self-love and love for all people. THAT seems like a recipe for a Sunshine Life if I ever heard one.
Create your Sunshine Life, by realizing your absolute Divine Perfection and stop worrying so much. This is the good part. ~MuaH
I think perhaps that is my lesson (well one of them anyway). Remember to just BE. It’s so impossible. I swear, if the Universe had provided me with any gift OTHER than A) a brain injury that literally HURTS to concentrate or think (or read for that mater) and B) a spinal fluid leak that literally makes me violently nauseous, dizzy and an exploding headache then I don’t think I could ever sit still. get this… if I sit up or stand vertically I get violently ill. That’s all. Sit up and get struck down sick. Seriously, how crazy is that? Can’t think. Can’t sit up. Can’t go for a walk. Can’t read. It’s kind of like some unbelievable Hallmark Movie of the week.
But I’m not feeling sorry for myself. I’m merely pointing out that the Universe has literally provided a situation that makes me sit and FEEL. Contemplate life. Want to know what’s really funny? My blood pressure is dangerously low, so when I try to at least meditate I can even sicker! It’s actually hilarious. So much for trying to control anything. My current role is just sit. And feel. Actually, don’t sit. LAY and feel. For 5 months.
Can you imagine your life if you could not sit up or stand for 5 months. Before my last surgery I had times that I could sit up for an hour, maybe even two before I got sick. It seemed limiting at the time to not be able to leave the house for more than an hour total. But now, I’m lucky to get 3 minutes. My husband has to basically be a single parent. He handles cooking, cleaning, groceries, picking up and dropping off kids and managing all of my medical appointments. Not to mention living with my emotional rollercoaster and pain cycles!
But, I did have a moment in the hospital of clarity. I realized at some point how long I’d been in the ICU and it was at 13 days. I thought “but my family CAN’T live without me for 13 days. It’s just NOT possible.” and then I realized “they are. they have been. everyone is still alive”. There was incredible and profound understanding for me. But life goes on. It always does. The things we think are impossible. The things we spend so much mental energy FEARING, in the long run, if it does happen then it happens. You still get up every day. You still breathe. You still work. You still pay bills. Life goes on. We adapt. So really, there’s no sense spending a single moment on fear. It’s a waste of the good stuff.
I write affirmations in my little journal every day. I visualize the life I want. I send love to the people I love and that pray for me. I feel my head with gratitude, love and joy. I listen to music that makes me happy (LOVE Sara Bareilles at the moment, she’s SO happy and Pandora really is quite amazing at picking out good stuff)
I have the itch to travel (not surprising I suppose). I have this fantasy of an old converted school bus with a bed I can lay in. Funky turquoise curtains. Card table for food and games. (Um, yes, Pinterest is one of my current obsessions). And heading out on the open road. Texas to California on a massive adventure… —yes, I know the reality of days in the car with two young kids for days on end… but I’ve got nothing but time to dream so in my dream we’re quite Brady Bunch-ish…. actually we’re more… do you remember Dharma and Gregg? We’re more like Dharma’s parents-ish. ha!
Create your Sunshine Life by finding the Joy in just Being. Slow down. Turn off your phone. Computer. TV. Listen to your kids. Hug your family. Sit outside in the fresh air. Start simple. And for gods sake, pour a nice glass of wine.
Today is Saturday, Jan 18. (I think). Everything is working out for the highest good.
I have been here since Tuesday, 1/14 , I trust the process of life. In fact, life provides all that we need,
I am grateful for the sweet, smart, joyful staff that surrounds me. I have created a community of people to love and that love me,
Create your sunshine life by 0 CHOOSE to be healthy and free. I am Healthy. I am well. I’ll met you ther.
This morning my eyes opened early for Sunday morning. 6:30. Ugh. And I realized that it was because my head was exploding. Ugh 2. So I rolled over and picked up my smartphone to scan Facebook for early entertainment and saw a friend walking down an early morning city street, with lovely morning sun, holding a Starbucks. I.Want.One. – can’t drive – Ugh 3.
This morning was cascading downward fast. It has been about 7 1/2 weeks since the accident. The last 6 weeks on complete bedrest. SIX WEEKS OF BED REST people. Not just bedrest for the body, I have a brain injury and damaged vision so I can’t even crack out on my computer or read books all day. I’ve had 5 procedures with a stupid large needle in my spine, countless MRI’s and CT scans, and multiple ER and hospital interactions ( too depressing to count).
It’s easy to start feeling out of control. And I really, really, really LIKE to be in control.
And I really, really, really like to be happy. And positive. And play in the sunshine. And go for runs. And cook. And prepare for the holidays.
But like it or not, I believe in manifesting our reality. I believe we create the life we live and we are in constant and complete control of our emotions. I believe that everything that happens is for a reason and in response to the things we have asked the universe to provide. Doesn’t mean I know why or how or what the hell I asked for to end up here. But I still believe.
So I rolled over and closed Facebook. I opened my 21 Day Deepak Meditation, plugged in my headphones and tried like hell to find calmness, peace, and confidence (the day 3 lesson – yes, I’ve fallen behind). It was not an easy 20 minutes. My mind kept flittering to the gallery in Montana, Christmas gifts, Traveling to St. Lucia, bills to be paid, grocery shopping lists for the day, and whether or not to have another surgery… are the steroids making me feel like crap or… wait what was that Mantra “sha shat something…” dammit. Breathe.
After my meditation I felt a TEENY tiny bit better, but really, I still felt lost. Disappointed in myself I didn’t meditate better and remembering all the things I CAN’T do today. (back to the dream of Starbucks). So I pulled out my gratitude journal and started writing. And writing and writing. Grateful for this day. Grateful for the sunshine. Grateful I have more than I need. Grateful for the amazing team of people I work with and the love they send me. Grateful my husband has been doing laundry, and cooking and cleaning for 6 weeks without going on strike. Grateful we have more than we need. and I kept going for two pages. Then started manifesting the things I desire with great clarity. I’m grateful I live near the ocean (I don’t, I live in Austin, but I want to. I would feel grateful to put my feet in the ocean, so I feel advance gratitude that someday I will again) grateful my body is strong and healthy, etc. etc. There. Feeling a bit better now.
By this point I had two naked children in bed with me climbing and tickling and giggling. Who can be grumpy with that?
Then the sweet little souls went and found themselves watercolors paints and paintbrushes and paper (NOT a small task for a 4 year old and 6 year old to do without help, complaining, or meltdowns). They created a beautiful little art space underneath the bedroom windows and started creating masterpieces for me.
I uttered aloud to the heavens that I SO badly wanted a Starbucks coffee and Torchy’s Breakfast Taco with a sigh. Shortly thereafter my sweet husband came upstairs with homebrewed Starbucks coffee and told me the breakfast tacos were on the way.
I still needed a little push to reach the top of the mountain, so I opened the Audio Book function of my Kindle and started playing my favorite Wayne Dyer Audio Collection. He spoke of “Burning Desire”. That it’s not about finances or material objects. It’s about principles and how to have a deeper and richer experience of life. Belief in an “ocean of abundance”. Lovely, isn’t it?
While laying in bed watching the art project drinking my coffee I spotted my Thanksgiving Issue of Martha Stewart Living with a gorgeous turkey on the front and wistfully wished to cook something lovely. So I got on Pinterest and started dreaming and spotting lovely recipes I’d love to eat and love to cook and dreaming of the dinner parties I’ll plan someday… (proud of my Pinterest food board, feel free to click the image to go directly there now)
And suddenly, miraculously, I’m filled with joy. Overwhelming gratitude. The sun is shining. My family is happy. We’re eating and drinking a lovely breakfast. And I’m dreaming with Pinterest. Still laying in bed. But found the joy.
Magic. Grateful. Had to capture the moment with a blog.
Happy Sunday to you.
Create your Sunshine Life, and don’t quit trying. It’s worth it when you get there.
Sometimes you need to slow down and give your self a reality check. Be grateful for the simple abundances of life, the things that go right, the simple joys.
- I have had my last needle in the spine for the week. Yay!
- a friend I have only met once offered to clean my bathrooms while I’m down. (imagine that).
- I got a grown up coloring book today and I LOVE it.
- I have a GREAT medical team that is kind and funny and takes good care of me.
- Tomorrow is Friday and Family Movie Night. Looking forward to spending time together….
- My MOMMA will be here in less than 1 week.
- I have amazing teams around me, family, friends, work. I am surrounded with love.
- I can see a lovely evening sky from my bed.
What are you grateful for?
Energy flows where attention goes. You are magical, start acting like it.
Create your Sunshine Life.