Even in Your Darkest Times, A Part of You Waits to Bloom

A Bit of Darkness

A Bit of Darkness

Into every life, a little darkness must fall.

Sunlight gives energy to plants, but it is during the dark, silent night that the plant transforms the energetic gift to further life.

Who knows if the flower reaching for the night sky is aware of its beauty before it blooms? Does it know as it reaches to heaven the blossom that looms, tucked tightly within it?

Is it within the dark, quiet night, free from the hot, sticky sun, that the flower begins to unfurl? Trying out its beauty in dark before unleashing it to the sighted world?

What must transpire for this blossoming? What internal ticking clock counts time on a different scale than in minutes and awakens the flowering spirit?

Who really knows. But within the darkest times of our lives, those times without a hint of moonlight, growth is occurring and we, like the flower, are waiting to bloom. Maybe the dark nights of our lives provide the signal for the internal clock allowing the blossoming of our spirit.

Or maybe it is in the darkness, sometimes free from hope and expectation, that our true nature first unfurls.

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The Power Within You- May You Learn to Believe in It

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Dear God,
Let me believe.
Let me believe in the power that already be within me.

When I pray for “power”, God, or “strength” or “fortitude”- let me realize
my prayer is not for more, God.

My prayer is not for more.

My prayer is that for once I will realize the gifts already present.

I do not need more, God. I do not need life to change to suit my limited beliefs.

What I need, God -and this I do heartedly pray- is the understanding of what gifts I already own. Help me see my power, strength and beauty. For only then, God, will I be able to believe in me.

And only then, God, will I come to believe that the power to change the world is already inside me.

As adults, we can not always be the victims to everything in our lives. Children can be victims and adults can be victims at certain times, but you can not be an adult and always be the victim. To be a victim is to think you have no power.

Within every situation, except for those of extreme abuse, there is a point of power for each of us.

The power you have may be a simple drop, compared to everything you face, but the drop is you and even the smallest drop of power contains the gift of transformation if only we would believe.

Let Your Heart Show You … Who You are

If you had to draw your heart, what would your image be?
I asked myself that question and this is what I received:

A Heart of Hearts

A Heart of Hearts

A heart of hearts lurks within.
How trusting am I?
This is the image of what lies in deep, on the inside.
Give it a whirl, watch it twirl, and still you see love upon every side.

Balanced grace, unhesitant.
Heart beats, sixty to the minute.
Marching lub-dub/lub-dub upon the world
Who can survive it?

My heart never fears for itself.
It is stronger than I.
It creates worlds that pass amongst the beats
as I stand humbly by.

We sometimes overlook our own strengths. In this image, the number 4 comes through. The number 4 denotes solidity, firmness, balance on the physical plane. Sometimes we know much more than we realize. We hide behind confusion, old habits, worries and more. But within each of us there is a heart that beats with the ferocity, tenacity, and confidence of life loved.

We are here. We are the creators. Within each of us, a heart beats and never hesitates.

A Blessing For Those Who have Traveled Life with You

My Direction Was Set

My Direction Was Set

My path was set before the Heavens were born.
Maps held to my heart until I felt I and they would crumble.

Despite my best attempt, I became rudderless along the way.
But, no more.

The direction lies ahead and I unfold the map within my heart-
recognizing my place among the stars.

My route is sure.
My hope is firm.

We travel two to a page or go our separate ways.
But always know I carry pieces of you to the stars.

A Woman, An Anniversary, and A Gift with a Story to Tell

A good gift allows everyone to benefit.
Some gifts just keep on giving. I was the recipient of such a gift this weekend.

My husband took me shopping for a gift for our wedding anniversary. I had something chosen in mind before we left, but received something of much greater value.
Below is a picture of the gift he gave me- on the physical level. It is beautiful in its own right and speaks of our love.
On the spiritual level, the gift is much more profound.

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What this gift gave me and what I hope to pass on to you is the faith and belief that you are always supported as you seek the Highest Good for yourself and everyone in your life.

I am familiar with AA through those I love, and something I have come to realize that AA does very well is it helps the participants embrace their changing lives on both the physical and spiritual levels.

Many internal changes, of course, happen within AA and similar groups. What is key, though, is that these changes are solidified and acknowledged physically by certain rituals. Participants receive coins, anniversary chips, etc. It may sound corny, but when you are undergoing a great deal of change, it can be difficult to feel confident.

You are not who you were before; yet your newly formed sense of self is a little shaky. Signs of support can make all the difference in you continuing on the path.

That is what this gift of the necklace did for me. The image of simple hearts has been in my art work for at least a year now. This year has been one of upheaval and disturbance as the old stories of my life have fallen away. Left in the wake of this dismantling has been the creation of time and space to reflect.

And there have been times, when I wanted to stop the process. In my weaker, more self-pitying moments, I did not think my personal growth was worth the price of confusion, tears, and quite honestly, work.

But that sense of love and heart never left me and I continued on my way.

The necklace with its simple heart spoke to me. It was the sign I needed that my personal work was supported.

And I wonder how many on their own personal journeys receive similar signs. I think we seek these signs on the subconscious level, so challenging can true personal growth be, we need some assurance that our internal work is integrated on the broader, external level.

I am here to tell you that it is, it is.

If you are in the midst of changing your life and becoming what your heart desires, please believe that you are supported. Take a moment and look for signs of support that you are being given. If you feel you can’t find any, ask and pray for one and then look again. It could be in the form of a perfect book, a quote that resonates, a powerful dream, a pattern of flowers, cloud shape in the sky- anything that may serve as a symbol to you.

Use it for motivation and strength. Like the person in AA who may carry the coin in his or her pocket as a reminder of his or her significant commitment to a better life, place your symbol near you physically or hold it within your heart- to remind you that you truly are worthy of change for the better.

How Cheese and Crackers Have Changed My Life

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Ever have the experience in which you are speaking about your life, relaying the oh, so “normal” tidbits, not thinking once, not thinking twice, about the information being relayed only to have another person point out, often gently, how strange it all may be?

At one time my therapist helped me realize how I become, what I now refer to as “Cheese and Cracker Kim”. In a session, I was merrily relating that I happily cook for my family almost every night, typical meat and potatoes fair. Because they really like and expect meat. Because I am a vegetarian, some nights I would just end up having cheese and crackers for dinner.

My therapist asked me, “How often does this happen?”

“Cheese and Cracker Kim” answered, “Oh, gosh, I don’t know, maybe 3 or 4 nights a week.” I think I said this a sense of happiness, because cheese and crackers were not the point of my story and I really wanted to move onto the “good” stuff- i.e. the really pressing problems as to why I was in therapy.

My therapist paused my ongoing diatribe to point out the symbolism of preparing meals for others while I basically made-do with crumbs.

I still did not see the point. I was “fine” and I was “especially fine” since everyone else was happy and well-fed.

“Cracker and Cheese Kim” was doing great!

Until recently.

Lately, I have experienced a great deal of awareness, change, and honestly, hope for treating myself better. I no longer see myself as someone satisfied with the crumbs while others eat to their fill.

So this is what has happened, “Cracker and Cheese Kim” has moved on and filled her plate but I am the only one, for now, at the new buffet.

The universe always provides opportunities to test our growth. Flex our new muscles, if you will, and add some strength and mass to our convictions. My life has shown me how I long for my plate to be filled- to be honored during my wedding anniversary, to have my husband’s family acknowledge me, to have my stepkids notice me (even if we are on vacation!).

All of these scenarios would have been met by “Cheese and Cracker Kim” with a grin, shrug, and “Gee Whiz, I don’t need a thing.”

Now I have needs, and into the awareness, a few gaps have appeared. It will take some time for others in my life to realize that I need to be filled also. There is a gap at present between what I need and what they have provided in the past. Let’s be honest, there was no gap in past, because “Cheese and Cracker Kim” had filled it all in for everyone.

I guess I am writing this, in case you are in a similar situation. Perhaps you have come to a new awareness. Perhaps you are stronger. And, perhaps like I did, you wonder why things have not immediately changed and why you are not feeling better.

It’s almost as if because we change we expect everyone around us to have undergone the same transformation. If they love you and are worth having you in their life, they will. The gap created by your growth will eventually be filled. Trust that your growth and the gaps it produces is actually presenting the space for the growth for others.

You don’t have to be a “Cheese and Cracker” person, when the buffet of life sits before you.

You Can and Will Survive the Sea of Change

During times of upheaval, we can feel as if we lose sense our selves. Of course, we do not. At our core, we truly remember who we are. This sense of knowing is what provides the guidance for much of our lives. We are seekers- returning to our selves.

May we use this for inspiration when life is seemingly tossing us about.

Below is an art piece I recently created reminding me of this idea. I had thought I was going to create a simply vesica pisces (the ultimate symbol of union, in my mind). But this is what emerged:

And the Seas Shall Part...

And the Seas Shall Part…

I saw the beautiful yellow vesica pisces (yellow= third chakra, which is the place of self-will and identity). This figure emerges from blue waves (something I had not anticipated). And I thought of Moses and the parting of the sea. Faith making way for the transformative journey.

And I also thought, while looking at that vesica pisces, of a vulva and birth and re-birth of our identities. How we can emerge from turmoil re-born, yet still intact, in union with ourselves.

When the seas of change swirl around us, may our faith and love part the way for the emergence of a new sense of self.

What if THIS is the Gift?

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What if THIS, whatever THIS may be for you, is the gift you have been seeking?

What if the current problem, situation, conundrum, difficulty, and/or issue you are currently trying to “fix” is really your ticket to a new way of being in this world?

What if wrapped up in the icky packaging of discontent, malaise, and/or confusion, you find inside all that you desired?

I wanted to gift of being loved. I have been given the gift of learning to love myself. How blessed am I?

When the Relationship Most Changed is the One with Yourself

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One woman left for a trip. Another woman returned.

I spent the past 12 days traveling with my husband, stepchildren, and his extended family throughout Florida. We were quite the group of 16 individuals. I went into this trip as “wife” and “stepmom” and received little support for either of those roles.
I was suddenly – “object”- within the lives of others. A handy traveling companion while the needs of my family were met by Disney and others.

And I realized something on this trip- Don’t ever stop growing and changing in order to serve the base needs of others.

In books of personal growth, you will often read that something along these lines – “as you work on yourself and change your life, your relationships will change”. This trip was living proof to me.

Normally, treated as I was, I would have shut down. My motto would have been “As long as everyone else is happy, I am o.k.”.
But not this time and not this trip. I fought for myself.

We can fool ourselves on our journey to self-awareness. So caught up we may be in the ideals of “love and light”. Living in the ideal, we lose sight of the real. We would all love to check out and live in simple spiritual truths. The bottom line is that we are physical beings and our place in this world matters.

I would have buried my own needs in order to “live in peace and harmony” with others. Heaven forbid, I ever make(?) someone feel bad or guilty for what they had done to me. But my growth is calling me to a different place- a place in which I love and value myself, and subsequently, a place in which I will stand up for myself.

I do not suppress this need to grow in this way any longer, in order to “spare” the feelings of others. I am never harsh or mean, but I am authentic when I now understand my own sense of well-being matters as much as everyone else’s.

On this trip, perhaps the relationship that changed the most was the one I have with myself.

Trust…You will be met half-way

Many people are familiar with the phrase “Seek and ye shall find.”

The statement actually calls for only one action- seeking. The results, the other half of the statement -“the finding”, is an implied given.

“Seek and ye shall find”-

I think sometimes we try to control both parts of the statement, because we want to ensure our success. We want to determine what we will find and we believe that we must make the “finding” happen.

This one statement captures what so many of us overlook. We can not control it all. In fact, sometimes we control frighteningly little.

The statement is a guarantee, though, in some ways- if you are willing to seek, you will find. You can seek God, you can seek greater understanding of your life, you can seek new experiences, you can seek a change for the better- and as long as your intent in seeking is true and aligned, you will find. It may not be what you anticipated. The shape and form may not have appeared in your imagination, but you will find.

Seeking is our job…the finding is simply the return blessing.