Wednesday, February 28, 2007

A Prayer

Wrapping the blue jacket tightly around myself, I prepared to enjoy my nightly meditation with Nature. Sometimes, Wind is howling and Rain is driving spears of Water across the land.

Sometimes, it will be still, with a solid Cloud cover; sounds are muffled then...the chimes from the Town Hall sound as if a huge, woolen blanket had casually been thrown over the Tower.

This night, however, it was cold and clear. The day just passed had been sunny, albeit not very warm, unless one stayed directly in Sun's light. And Wind held a sharp edge, promising Snow.

With the light just fading from the Sky, I saw the first Star. As a child would, and as I do every time I see the first pinprick of Light in the Heavens, I wished upon it. And as I finished my I do every time...I recited to myself..."Twinkle, twinkle, little Star, How I wonder who you are, Up above the World so high, Like a Diamond in the Sky!"

I chuckled to myself. I am often such a creature of habit. Had I not recited this verse, it would have unsettled me. And the last thing I want, these days, is to further give myself any anxiety, no matter how small!

I let my mind wander at will; then it was time to speak.

Spirit, I said, Life has been difficult these last few months. Many troubling events have occurred. Many times, You have heard me rant on about something or other, not accepting, not forgiving, becoming judgmental. Wanting what I want on my time, not Yours.

I know, too, Spirit, that You have forgiven me for those transgressions, those marks on my character. I know it is I who must forgive myself.

I have not had time for reflection, for wondering, for thinking. I miss the times in the Garden. You knew how badly I needed a day outside, didn't you? Thank You for the warm day You sent today; I dug and dug and dug, grounding myself with Mother Earth's help.

It feels, lately, as if I am on a roller-coaster ride. Up and Down and all over the place Sideways. Spirit, I thank you for the deep faith I have had the good fortune to build upon over the years. It is standing me in good stead.

Thank You for the synchronicity in my day-to-day living. I only have to think I want a parking place, and one appears. I only have to wish upon a Star. And sooner or later, when the time is right, my wish becomes reality.

This is your promise to me. And, Spirit, I know You never break promises. But, at times, I just have a little trouble remembering.

Please take away the negativity...the black, terrifying moods...the fearful what-ifs. Could You just help me find the joy? Could You help me find the balance in all these situations that crop up? And could You, just this once, take another look at the load You have given me to carry? Perhaps some of those big boulders could be shed.

And while I'm asking for such huge help, probably overstepping my bounds...could You see fit to add a couple of hours to each 24 hour day...perhaps make it a 28 hour day? That could work. Just so I'll have more time to write...

What's good for me is good for everybody else, too, Spirit. I'm not unique; can You please give all the other beings and Mother Earth, too, the answers they seek? The wisdom they need?

Could we maybe work on the fear and lack of faith I run into every day? I know the old adage..."When fear comes knocking, you don't have to let him in"... but every so often, it's quicker than me, and sneaks its insidious way inside...

I almost forgot. I wanted to tell You how thankful I am that we are receiving Your greatest gift...a new baby soul. But you already know all that.

In fact, You already know all of my wishes, needs, requirements, and goals. But I'm glad we had this talk. It reminds me that I'm not in charge of my life.

Wind sharpened, blowing a hard, cold gust. A flock of Geese, late back from their feeding grounds, flew, loudly honking, overhead. I shivered, knowing without a doubt, that it was still February...we were still in the grip of Winter.

My meditation with Spirit was done.

Thursday, February 22, 2007


Lately, I can't seem to walk by baby stores, without going in and having a peek. I can't seem to look at baby photos without imagining myself holding a baby.

I dream about babies; I wonder what all the new, strange paraphernalia for babies is; I discuss babies at great length with other older people.

I must, by the grace of Spirit, be having another grandchild. Do ya think?

I have had dreams about this new soul entering our family for many years. I know the eyes; I feel strong, masculine energy, when I 'see' the baby; I 'feel' the weight of that tiny body encircled by my arms.

We won't be strangers, this new member of our family and I. We have already made our acquaintance, and it began eons ago. Just as the tie to my granddaughter did not have to be made upon her birth...the cord was already there.

They say babies' eyes are full of innocence. I don't agree...when I see a newborn baby, I see the wisdom of the Universe, for a short while after birth. The new soul is still very close to Spirit, and wisdom and knowledge shine out of the babe's eyes.

Even if my intuition told me my daughter, a career woman, was eventually going to have a baby, sometimes I despaired. I am ever so grateful for my granddaughter, who still has time for her Nammy, but is maturing and growing at a rapid rate. Rarely, now, do I get the chance to wander in the garden with Bree, sharing the wisdom of Nature.

I was on the telephone with my daughter when she told me she was pregnant. A small, brown bird flew into the house at the same time I was speaking to her. It was amazing...I cannot begin to tell you. The tears streamed down my face; I couldn't speak to my daughter...and all the while I watched Brown Bird.

The dogs were in. But Brown Bird wasn't concerned. She flew from room to room, checking things out. The dogs...ahhh...I worried about those dogs. But they ignored her, going outside without complaint, looking back over their shoulders at Brown Bird, not considering her an intruder at all.

And neither did I. Because, you see, I knew this Brown Bird. Every sense in me was on full alert, which was difficult, because I was still on the telephone with my daughter. I had a choice; I could either watch Brown Bird or give my daughter my full attention.

Brown Bird made the choice for me. She settled down on a plant by the window...and watched me. Suddenly, I knew it was alright to wait until the phone conversation was complete, before I did anything about Brown Bird.

My daughter and I spoke for a long while...fears and hopes, confidences and apprehensions...all the things a mother and daughter speak about, given the news of a first baby. I was outside, letting Sun and Wind give me balance, grounding myself. I had almost forgotten Brown Bird.

My convers- ation ended. I sat in wonder at the news, until a piercing trill brought me out of my thoughts. The Brown Bird!

I carefully closed the back door, leaving the dogs lazing in the Sun. I grabbed a tea towel, and walked over to Brown Bird, who was still sitting on the plant.

Hello, Katrina, I whispered.

Brown Bird grew silent, ruffling her feathers. She stared at me. I stared back, feeling tears streaming once again down my cheeks.

I know about the baby, I told her. I'm so over the top, I don't know how to tell you how excited I am! And I'm so glad you came to visit, at the exact same time your sister told me about it!

We spoke a little longer, all the while staring at one another, drinking each other in, it seemed. The energy that passed between Brown Bird and I felt all-encompassing and very pure. It is hard to a sudden, warming shaft of Sunlight in a darkened Forest, perhaps.

Time passed. Brown Bird grew anxious and fluttered her wings. It was time for her to go. I wrapped the towel around her... oh, so gently...and let her go off the front porch. She flew to the telephone pole, sang a short song...and flew away.

I have not seen her, or her kind, since. I don't know what kind of Bird she was...I have looked in the bird books and can't make a positive identification. Perhaps I am not meant to.

This all happened way back last summer. I have cradled the secret to my chest for eight months. I can no longer not write about the new is a big change in my life, and colours everything I do.

And the birth is coming up. March 28th is the due date. Babies are perennially late, however; my daughter feels the date of the baby's birth will be sometime in April.

Yesterday I mowed the back lawn, before it rained. As I mowed, I thought of the new baby that would see the garden for the first time. Bree grew along with a different garden; she has memories of large spaces and forests. This baby will see a smaller version. Smaller, but no less beautiful.

Now that my secret is out, I will be inundating this blog with pictures of babies, stories from a grandmother. The new baby will live in a different town; I will not be able to see him/her all the time, as I did with Bree. But Bree has promised to teach the stories to the baby that I taught her.

I wonder if Brown Bird will return on the day of the baby's birth?

Rest assured, I will let you know.

Note: The photos used in this post are not pictures of our new baby. There will be many, however, once the child is born!

Monday, February 19, 2007

Road Anarchy

Don't you just want to go, on some days deep in the heart of Winter, on a road trip, destin- ation unknown? There are many people I know who have the wanderlust spirit, taking trips here and there...mostly organized trips, over the Winter months. Cabin fever averted.

But I'm a who usually finds comfort and peace in the rooms of my house. Long months away from where I am at my most tranquil would be difficult.

Every once in awhile, however, on the spur of the moment, I want to do what a hairdresser pal of mine once referred to as Road Anarchy. As he cut my hair, we discussed trips and vacations. I mentioned one of my favourite things to do is to leave everything behind, and drive where I am guided, or where the whim of the moment leads. Ungoverned and unfettered.

To turn left, off the beaten path...or right. To take a bumpy road, perhaps, one that doesn't look as if anyone has used it for a long time. Maybe, just over that steep, deeply runnelled hill that lies at the end of this road, there is a Stream that burbles over sunlit Pebbles.

And perhaps, there will be a large sun-kissed Boulder that cools his bottom in the singing Stream. I will sit, letting Bird Song rise and fall into my consciousness; letting the words from Wind filter in and out...

And I will listen to the stories from the Trees that cluster here, on the side of this Singing Stream. Stories of long ago, when they were seedlings...of awe and humbleness and gratefulness for each and every drop of Rain and shaft of Sunlight. Stories of wisdom and peace and stillness, when Winter Snow leaves a hush over the land.

If I am fortunate, I will meet wildlife I haven't met before and exchange greetings. Perhaps Deer or Grandfather Bear may meander to the Stream for a drink, and our eyes will meet, recognizing in the other a kindred soul.

Or Eagle may grace me with his presence, sending his message from Spirit. He will ride the Wind flow for long, long moments, dipping and balancing. I feel his eyes, keen as the point on a blade, search for mine, as he one with the silent currents of Air.

And after awhile of sitting on that Rock, I will become as One with all the elements that surround me...silent and still, but with so much to say...

I might wonder, at some point, where I am. But this is the beauty of taking a road trip of unknown destinations. It doesn't matter where I am, I just am.

And when I return, for I shall always return to the Home of my Heart...back down that previously unknown road, back the way I came...I will remember the stories I heard, the messages given to me, and the sorrows I gave to the Stream, who kindly washed them clean.

And I will remember how, for an afternoon, I became a peaceful road warrior, one who practiced anarchy, left sorrow behind and found beautiful, pacific moments... in the arms of Mother Nature.

Even if the anarchy only happened in my imagination.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007


Having recently gone through a firestorm of lost trust, shaky faith and deep hurt and anger, I think I may have found the right path to the other side.

One of the many counselors that drifted in and out of my life once taught me that anger chases depression away...that depression is anger gone inward.

It is not a pretty sight when I get angry; it is not a pretty sight when anybody gets angry. Far stronger words than "pretty" describe anger.

I don't seem to get angry in a mild way. Furious is more the word, when all the buttons are pushed. I scare small children; the enormous energy that emanates from me at those times I have had to learn to rein in, lest I frighten my own small family, during my parenting years.

I have heard that in my childhood, my tantrums were legendary.

With maturity, I rarely let my anger show. I will acknowledge to myself that I feel angry, and I might feel that way for awhile, but I have learned to release it in other, more healthy ways.

But every once in a great while, when the Tower falls and my world seems full of judgments, loss of trust, and deeply hurtful situations...the gauzy veil of Fury falls, colouring my world with strong, fire-engine red overtones.

It happened recently. One after another, people I trusted, people whose wisdom I admired...were able to find those well-hidden buttons, the scar tissue of bone-deep boils that were not entirely cleared. Until there were so many hits to my soul, I no longer greeted the day with peace, but with the ready stance of a warrior, instead.

Always vigilant, ever wary.

It could be said that as my anger built, the logical amongst us, those who think with their left brains, would say it would have to release at some point. But there were so many shots in such a short period, I had no way to process any of them. The daggers and swords that sliced into me only piled up...and up.

And I think with my right brain.

Intuitively, after much meditation, I reached the conclusion that there were some things in these situations of grief, destroyed trust and judgmental calls that were the same. I was directed to look at the similarities in all of them.

That was good advice, but as I acted on it, I fell into depression...along with another Winter Virus, I felt barely able to function. I wrote horribly, depressing posts, none of which were posted. If I felt as if my world had turned upside down, I didn't see a good reason to drag others along...

It seemed the Universe was urging me along on my unwilling journey... with the Virus, I was unable to escape the building anger by digging the Earth or by scouring the walls.

Instead, I found articles, given by a Divine hand, that led me down various healing paths. But all this new-found knowledge didn't coalesce, in my fogged, grey outlook on the world.

I needed to clear that fog.

And I would have to face my anger to do it. My anger and the resulting fall-out. The detritus of a furious outburst stays long, has its own time line.

I blew. I walked around in an adrenaline fueled red cloud. Frustrated and wrapped up in wrath, I stomped and burned. I raged. And I asked why. What was the sense of all this fiery energy boiling throughout my body? What was it I needed to see? What?!

It was as if the fury built to a crescendo. With clashing cymbals and booming drums, the answer burst through my consciousness, with the force of an avalanche.

I had regressed. I had allowed numerous warning signals to go unheeded, making excuses, hiding in denial. I allowed people close to me to under- estimate me, until the pushing grew too intense. I hid my boundaries.

In others' eyes, I became a non-entity. I took criticism so well, didn't I, always considerate of another's point of view. I could be pushed around, manipulated and stomped on, because I only smiled and gave assurances things would be better tomorrow...even when spite and judgment were directed at the deepest parts of me.

I forgot, for awhile, that I am a strong woman. That I have learned many ways to deal with the slings and arrows, that I did not have to duck, that I could fight back.

A difficult concept for a pacifist to grasp.

I want others to understand that even though I am a peace lover; even if I present gentle- ness and serenity and under- standing in my demeanor, there is a limit. Perhaps, should there be a next time when wars are being fought against me, I can show this limit before a world war appears.

I want myself to understand that my desire is to please others, and in so doing, I may not always follow the best path for me. And unless others are totally impeccable, they will continue to demand more and more of me. It is a part of the human condition.

I thought I had my boundaries in place. And I did, for a time. But they became comfortable, like a well-worn shoe. I hardly noticed they were there, anymore. I didn't do a check to see if some were outmoded, or others needed tweaking.

There were unhealthy cords, too, that needed to be cut. Attachments to old thoughts and reactions and people or things that no longer served me well had to be weeded out.

Creator knows best when the time is right to finally learn and retain a lesson...all the struggling for answers was in vain, until the time was right.

Peace eased the rampant fury, as I finally found and re-membered my way.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Creating a Home

When the word "home" flows through my mind these days, I am instantly flooded with warm, loving energy...I know that today, my home is a cozy and safe place to be.

It was not always thus; during my first marriage, there were times my home was not safe. Those were the chaotic years, where sometimes there was not enough money to pay the utilities.

Those were the years I became very creative with ingredients, because sometimes there was little in the pantry other than condiments and pasta.

I felt anxious when I thought of the word "home" in those days. Life was far from serene and peaceful on the home front; this unsettled energy transferred itself to the inhabitants and the very home, itself.

I have lived in at least twelve different homes, during my adult years. Each time I moved, I tried to infuse the new home with the comfortable feel of the last one, never quite succeeding because of the transient nature of my life at the time.

But I lived in my last home for 18 years... and I was able to transfer its homey feel, when I moved, to my new home with ease. I just transferred the love...and the rest fell into place.

However, what happens when a move is done where it will probably be for the last time? And you are aware of it?

This is what my mother faced last week, after she moved into a Care Facility. Brand new and swanky, this home has all the bells and whistles, and best of all, has caregivers who tend their patients with love and dignity.

But my mother only sees a hospital room. It will be up to her family to decorate this skeleton of a room, which has only a bed, dresser, highboy, and her beloved recliner in it. Mom has no idea how to make it homey, because to her, this room is not something to love...this room is the last place where she will live. Because of this, her inclination is to ignore the whole idea of making this room attractive.

I want to make it into a place where she will find peace. I forget, though, that my mother's world grows smaller and smaller...the place of peace and comfort to her, now, is her bed and her recliner. I fight against recognizing this, because to do so would make me accept where she is on the path of life.

And so, I see a room filled with living things...plants and flowers. My mother, who was a brilliant gardener in her time, used to love plants and flowers. The real ones. Now she says they die, in these airless rooms. She cannot bear to watch them die.

She has impossibly bright red silk flowers, instead. They make a strong statement in an otherwise undecorated room.

I think this is how her room will evolve. She will add items that catch her eye and stir her soul. They will be mismatched; my vision of what her room should look like will be nothing like the room my mother will design, in this last part of her life.

With my mother's move, I have given myself a gift. Instead of fretting and worrying about my way, my vision...I will stand back and watch my mother, just sending peace and love to her each time I enter her room. No demands.

As she becomes more comfortable in her new way of life and her new environment, the things my mother will collect around her will touch a part of her soul I cannot know. She is traveling on, on a path I have not trodden as yet. Only she knows what tools to gather for her journey.

Last year, I was able to help Mom face Dad's death... becoming a teacher. This year, Mom will take her role back, as I watch her moving slowly and yet, so purposefully, away from me.

Creating the vision I have for her room is the last thing on her mind. She already knows this room is transient, and therefore difficult to infuse with her personality. She knows what she requires. I do not have to do it for her...

I'm learning to let her go.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Becoming Conscious

The early years of my life were mostly lived in an unconscious manner. Many years ago, I learned if I tucked uncomfortable information about people, places or things in the very turns and twists of the back of my mind...I could easily deny them.

Thus, I lived many years without actually living and experiencing the emotions that are a natural part of life.

But I guess we all wake up at some point...I can only say that there were many wake-up calls for me, before I actually became conscious and worked my way through them, instead of hiding and denying them.

And then, all those hidden denials wormed their way back to the surface of my mind...and suddenly, as if a light bulb switched on, I discovered if I took a few of these hurtful situations I had hidden and applied them and learned from them...Voila!

I learned wisdom, instead of denial, repression and the resultant skewed view of life that these tools for survival bring.

I believe all babies are born totally conscious of their world. Babies will let parents know immediately something is not right in their very small corner of the population. And some of us, such as Akiane,(who I found on Matt's and Lorna's blog) keep this awareness and do not let denial and repression see the light of day.

But me? I learned, at a very young age, if I didn't think about whatever incident caused me pain, I didn't have to deal with it. Don't think about it...this little sentence became my mantra.

I lived this way through a cancer scare, my first divorce, and various other life changing events...until I couldn't hide things anymore. Then I turned to alcohol, to dull these thoughts that were becoming increasingly more difficult to suppress.

This worked for a few years, until I became a full-blown alcoholic...because, you see, it took more and more alcohol, eventually, to continue to hide from myself.

But this behavior didn't please others in my life. And I wanted to please, I wanted to do the best I could for my family...I just didn't know how, without facing many issues...all by myself. I was alone in this, wasn't I?

I believe the Universe has a plan for us all. Hiding from myself as hard as I was, my wake-up call happened very quickly after I started drinking to excess, in the scheme of things.

I remember, as all Alcoholics do, the very first time I walked into an AA meeting, all by myself. It is ingrained in my this day, I have never faced as much fear and shame as I did that day.

The fear and shame would continue, because I wouldn't allow myself to open up, to share my feelings. It took six months before I could concentrate on myself...I would share other people's problems around the tables, I could help others...but I hid my own hurtful situations and kept them under a very strong lock and key.

Bit by bit, I would allow tidbits to release...small nuggets of the huge mountain of pain that filled my heart. And each time I did, I would feel less shame, less fear.

And I learned an incredible amount, the more I let the darkness that resided within me to see the light of day.

I was becoming conscious. Suddenly, Problems and Pain were dealt with as they arose. I was no longer afraid of consequences. My self-confidence began to unfurl. I no longer felt alone.

And my spirit- uality, which I had also hidden, because I thought my experiences were strange and unacceptable, found a chink in the armor I had hidden it behind and burst forth and bloomed.

I discovered my beliefs were not so strange...rather they were a gift from Creator that I had spurned and ignored. There were others who explored spirituality, in the very same way I did. And many walked right beside me, making me believe that I could be open and true to myself, just as these others had.

I discovered I was never alone. I discovered there were clues all around me, if I became conscious of them and aware. These clues could be used as tools to solve the natural progression of problems that filtered into my life. I had re-discovered faith.

As a child, I would read the Bible under my bed covers with a flashlight. This little Bible had been given to us in school, and I still have it...I did not know, when I was young, why this little Book had the power to comfort. But it did.

I knew, had I allowed others in my family to know I read the Bible, there would be teasing and laughter. I could not bear this reaction to my Bible reading; hence I hid it. Much of it I didn't understand...but I knew I gained comfort from it. That was all I required then.

In the years following recovery, I explored my spiritual beliefs. I became stronger, more aware and thus, much more conscious of my own and other's behavior.

I discovered Spirit; I discovered Spirit was always with me. This realization, this epiphany, changed the direction of my life.

I found I no longer had to hide pain or what others consid- ered unaccept- able in me. Spirit knew it all anyway. Spirit accepted me just as I was, totally and without reservations. I knew this.

My world opened. I began to use my intuition, honing it and asking for guidance all the way. If I paid attention, if I became conscious of all the little bits and pieces of a situation, if I trusted myself, suddenly I could work through anything.

My faith would be tested over and over again, after I accepted my spirituality. My daughter died, and there would be another divorce. I clung to Spirit, throughout these difficult times. And as I worked through them, my consciousness became greater. Repression and denial still occur; it does not take long before I become aware of what I'm doing.

Mistakes and wrong turns on the path of life continue, for me. Spirit allows me my choices. Some are really bad, but with guidance, I can find the path that is not so difficult, leaving the torturous, twisting road I chose previously behind.

I believe I will work on conscious behavior for the rest of my life. It is still very easy for me to hide; still very easy to deny. A lifetime of solitary pursuits is difficult to overcome completely. And denial is very powerful.

Being unaware did not allow me to experience the full joys in my life, either. It works both ways. Either experience life in a fully aware manner, or live a half life, where I am living but not in a full way.

With all the trials and tribulations that occur in life, I am happy this one...this understanding of conscious on its way to being solved.