If you want a change of scenery, sometimes you need to take a different path. You’ve heard the saying right…insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. Admitting I was completely insane was the first step in a new and different direction. I was overcome with so many feelings . I was falling, drowning in my own routine wondering why not a single bit of happiness was in sight. Then I answered my calling to go back to yoga. It felt strange to be back on my mat. Actually my mat was like an old familiar friend but the room and people were different from what I expected. I took yoga kinda seriously and it took some repeating the mantra, do not judge to overcome the oddity of the girl singing a long with the music on the mat beside me. The class was slower paced that I was used to. Do not judge I reminded myself. Afterwards I was feeling more like my old self than I had in a while. I was overcome by the kindness as each person in the class came over to meet me. This was more than just a yoga class. This was a yoga tribe that has been desperately missing from my everyday life. I am so grateful for the experience and I am looking forward to going back again on Friday. If you think a small gesture of kindness can’t make a difference, I am here to remind you that it absolutely can. Go out and spread your light. Someone has been in the dark too long. Show them how to shine.
Sometimes it infuriates me how easily some people are able to ignore their responsibilities. If they don’t feel like doing something than they just aren’t going to do it. Doesn’t seem to matter if the consequence will affect them negatively. It’s more important to live in the moment and just do what feels good. I can’t help but wonder how different my own kids lives would be if I just didn’t feel like being their mom the past 18 years. Maybe I should have slept when they wanted to eat or ignored when they needed their pants changed. I see this pattern with my youngest and it drives me nuts. I didn’t set this kind of example. I didn’t phone it in or slack off or take a personal vacation from parenting or anything else when I just didn’t feel like being responsible that day. Granted it has gotten better with maturity and time but these little missteps have grave consequences and can undo weeks and months of hard work by one decision to be lazy. Am I alone here or is anyone experiencing the same thing? Not doing my work was never an option. I wouldn’t dare. That is why I am so shocked and in disbelief that people have such a different mindset when it comes to work and responsibility. I guess I just needed to vent and reach out to see if I am alone in this.
Sometimes it’s hard to practice what you preach. I usually love November because it’s a time I actively focus on the things I am grateful for. However, this year the challenge was much greater than I could’ve imagined. I could come up with something I should be grateful for but the feelings didn’t accompany the words. I have been moving through life recently unenthused. It’s painful to admit the emptiness I have been consumed with lately. Depression has crept back into the shadows and left me feeling cold and dark. I used to say, there is always something to be grateful for and I believe those words ring true today. However, feeling grateful and listing things to be grateful for are very different from one another. I’ve come to the realization that the real struggle lies somewhere between our expectation of someone or something and the actual reality they bring to our lives. It’s hard to feel grateful and disappointed at the same time. Today I felt called to go back to yoga and I did. More on that story later but the first thing the instructor said to me was just don’t judge yourself. The words made me want to cry. I haven’t been practicing self love and the truth is I haven’t felt much love toward others. I have felt frustration, disappointment and even anger. I had shut down completely and built those walls so high around myself, I couldn’t even feel the wind less an ounce of gratitude. You can’t heal what you don’t acknowledge so even though it hurts to speak the truth, I look forward to allowing the healing to begin. What is something that is easier for you to preach and harder for you to practice?
I received the oddest package in the mail today. I cut open the box and pulled out a bag full of leaves. The memories came rushing back as the smell I’ve never forgotten filled the air. Oh how I missed fall. It’s just not the same here compared to where I grew up. Sure a few leaves fall to the ground but I miss the rustling sound under my feet. I still have the urge to run and jump as I picture a bunch of raked leaves set perfectly into a pile. That bag of leaves took me back for a moment to a time I am most fond of. I am so grateful to my brother in law who took the care and time to fill that bag and mail it to me so many miles away. I am tickled pink that he overheard my conversation telling my sister how homesick I often feel during the fall season. It was such a thoughtful surprise. A random act of kindness that completely made my day. I am beyond grateful for the thought. Those are the kind of deeds we must pay forward. When is the last time someone did something kind and unexpected just for you?
Today I am reminded to be happy right now in spite of what’s going on around me. In a day and age where there is constant talk of doom and gloom and purposeful language to bring others down, I have to remain above it. I cannot focus on negativity and be positive. I cannot allow my heart to harden because of anyone else’s fear or despair. We are given so many blessings yet the focus remains on all that is bad. Today, make a conscience choice to choose good thoughts. Choose happiness and focus your time actively looking for the good. It’s there. Sometimes we can’t recognize it anymore because our focus has been so targeted in the other direction. The glass is half full and half empty. Which way will you interpret it today? Be thankful. Be hopeful and do yourself a favor and mute the rest out. Don’t be the struggle. Be the difference. Happy Friday!
My niece came home for a surprise weekend visit from college last weekend. My mother was telling me the story of how excited she was that the house was clean and there were cookies baking in the oven. This was a reminder to me not to drag my kids into my chaos. Life is tough enough and when we can create and provide an environment of calm, our kids feel safe. Life is hard these days and HOME has to be the sanctuary we all desperately need. We need a safe place to fall and somewhere we can exhale and be free of judgement and expectations. A place where we look at each other lovingly and speak in a gentle, loving tone. A place where we all feel we are enough for who we are. I pray I will remember these words on the days I am angry and fed up with the nonsense of life. I hope I can find the self restraint to keep unkind words to myself, the mindfulness to enjoy each moment we have together and enough love to fill the emptiness in between until we can all be together again. I pray home will be a place my kids will always look forward to.
I used to rush through Thanksgiving season and try and fast forward to Christmas. The older I get, the more I realize how important it is to pause and be thankful for the things in my life. I give thanks so many times a day now. In between feeling frustrated, discouraged and the other array of feelings that accompany everyday life, I find hope and strength in the things I am grateful for. Thanksgiving is now a time I purposely slow down. I love that my family all helps with preparing the food. I love that we bake together and break bread and spend time together at the table just being together. No presents, no rushing…just a moment of sitting quietly together in the passing of time. Every year I appreciate and love this time even more. How do you feel about Thanksgiving?