I had a blessed visit this morning with my dad…..it manifested with steepled fingers. Elbows on the arms of the chair with all 5 hand digits touching each other only connecting at the finger pads. It’s one of those memories of seeing my dad sitting in his recliner with his head back with his hands touching in the steepled finger position. The very last time I saw my dad was from the door of his hospital room shortly before his transition, laying in bed with fingers in the steepled position occasionally moving his hands as if having a conversation with someone I could not see.
This morning during the Daily Word and meditation portion of our Unity Service with my eyes closed I felt tears beginning to trickle from the outer corners of my closed eyes and my attention was drawn to the fact that my elbows were resting on the arms of the chair and my 5 finger pads on each hand were touching in a steeple position and I knew that my dad was close by. I wondered why the visit!
The energy of my dad visits often when I am open to his guidance or I am in a moment when I recognize I’m feeling lost or lonely and need some love. It’s not that I actually reach out or seek his connection, it’s that he just appears in my vulnerable heart. I am learning to allow the embrace, allow the connection, recognizing that his presence is here with me always and most importantly understanding that his presence is as real as if he were looking at me across the room from his recliner in his physical form.
I have been thinking it was retirement that has taken the pressure off. The pressure of no longer entertaining the belief that I’m not as smart or as worthy as everyone else…mentally living in my head believing that because I didn’t pursue a college educated career I wasn’t as good as or as worthy as others. That’s not it! I jumped out of bed this morning searching for pen and paper in order to get this most recent download recorded.
I’ve always known that I was raised by common parents…common being dad graduated from high school, enjoyed being with himself fishing or hunting, worked a “job” to make a living. Because of his job choice, he was able to take his art to work with him and create who he was on the job while hourly walking around pushing buttons and checking gages. I have no doubt I’m over simplifying his job. My mother didn’t graduate from high school but spent many of my growing up years taking sewing classes and living the life of a secretary for a lawyer. She always called herself a legal secretary and while I knew that “legal secretaries” were probably credentialed…she was theoretically a legal secretary.
I married into a cerebral family which didn’t help my self esteem at the time …. I just knew I was different than they were and did not fit into this family who I assumed looked down on me because I didn’t know “stuff”….I knew street smart stuff, I knew life stuff but I didn’t know the right stuff. The comparison that I always made was an illusion of my own making….if I had only known then what I know now.
I have always been exactly what I was meant to be…it was the ancestoral or familial blocks that had to be excavated, discarded so that I could understand I was a vital part of the whole of humanity. I contributed but I did not understand my part in the big picture was as important as the next person. So when I woke this morning with this knowing. There is nothing I need to do physically, mentally or spiritually to be who I thought I could be…These are just soul blocks that I’m in this lifetime to work through and remove. Being me is not something I need to aspire to …. it is what I AM.
This morning one of those wormy kind of things wiggled its way into my consciousness and I recognized it as a symptom of my fear of scarcity. I won’t head dive into everything I’ve learned in the last couple of years about the fear of not having enough…whether it be money or toilet paper or love … but Once I recognized it in myself, I started questioning if this is the fear that has many hoarding toilet paper and chlorine wipes during this pandemic. This fear was a cloud I remember over my childhood…it probably goes without saying that a child should not grow up aware of their parents fear….but we know what sponges children are. My parents were young adults during the depression so I get it!
With that in mind, it is obvious when you look at my overflow closet in the basement that I buy in bulk. The difference in buying in bulk to save money and buying in bulk because of the comfort of always having what I think I need when I need it is a very thin line.
Just like all of my spiritual ah ha moments, I’m not sure why this realization showed up this morning…but I know it comes to be healed. I buy coffee in bulk …a box of 72 keurig morning blend and one box of dark roast. It used to be when the stash got down to 12 or 13 K cups, I knew it was time to reorder. Similar to a friends wife who sent her husband to the store for cartons of cigarettes when she was down to one carton in the closet.
This morning when I lifted the lid I realized that another 2 boxes of kcups arrived this week…I obviously did not need to order. The realization hit me that this is a bigger issue than I realized…this fear of running out. I think the pandemic and the run on toilet paper inflamed my “lack” nerve. Instead of irritation with the lack of toilet paper on the shelves of the grocery store, I send grace to those people who, perhaps, are also suffering from an unrecognized fear of lack. I need to offer grace to everyone who is not exactly like me because I have NO IDEA what their lives and their fears feel like to them!
As morning broke with the sunrise, it took awhile for the full sun to rise over the cloud bank. The beams of sunlight edging the clouds was more beautiful each time I looked out the window until the majesty of the sun was a bright, blinding orb.
I took some deep breaths of gratitude for my view of the world outside my window.
I make an effort to avoid all of the negative, blaring news about our government, our lack of leadership, our current health crisis, our anger with each other, the ugliness that is in my face every time I turn on the TV or open my IPAD. I’m tired…I’m very tired. But the sunrise this morning reminded me that there is beauty out there…we must just focus on the natural wonders we see and dismiss what does not serve our highest good…onward and upward!
I spend a lot of time either agreeing or disagreeing with other humans. There are times when I’m neutral. But often I say in my head…what are they thinking? What are their demons? What happened to them? More like what the HELL happened to them? Thankfully I’m also able to say, how did I get so lucky with friendships? In spite of the the events in my life that I considered negative at the time, how did I get so lucky? I am grateful for the ability to now recognize Peace of Mind?
Laying in bed trying to get a nap in before work, I was focusing on my chakras because I have been feeling out of alignment…or to be honest…I’m tired, have been experiencing some fear and entertaining bitchy thoughts. While laying there I had the image of an older woman with large, lipstick decorated lips. My thoughts went to what would that be like to have well endowed lips. Would I talk differently, would I enunciate words differently? Would I look in the mirror and notice my beautiful lips first…or would I be focused on thin hair or tired eyes? What would it be like to look different? What would it be like to even have a different heritage…say black or asian? Would I be the same person inside..looking in the mirror but seeing a different face?
Of course I would be a different person inside having different life experiences. But, what if we could trade out bodies for a day? Would I understand the difference? Would I be less judgmental? Would I “get it”? Would I be the same after walking in someone else’s pumps?
Because of my upbringing which I can sum up as do what you are told, no need to have a mind of your own because this is what you believe and this is what you will do, it took me a long time to realize that I was going to begin stepping out in my own direction. I still followed rules and, for the most part, laws, but I learned through experience that if you continue doing what you’ve always done and think with the same mind you used before, then you will have the exact same outcome. BUT…if you pay attention to nuances (which I now call intuition), speak with respect, do your homework and intelligently defend your case, then sometimes rules will be changed. I also learned that if the rules don’t change, you can either suck it up and follow the rules which MAY be the appropriate behavior or more likely for me, I would get mad…scream and holler in my head …. then organize like- minded individuals and go at it again…. being sure to attach some negative emotion to it so that in 20 or more years later, similar emotions about similar situations can rise up and before you know it you are overwhelmed in anger and hatred and vengeance which will probably be overblown for the situation…ie:road rage. There are many years and many experiences that have occurred before which exploded this workable problem into a full blown battle in your head. When they rise up, you will be reacting and responding the way you did 20 or more years ago to a completely different situation….the cycle just continues throughout life.
What did I just read or hear the other day..something to the effect….you can’t fix a problem with the same mind that created it.
My opinion as to the answer is not going to come from me in a 3 paragraph blog, or quite frankly, from me at all…I’m learning and all I can really share is what got me from there to where I am now sharing my thoughts on my blog, but I will credit the PRACTICE of meditation, the book Mastery of Self by Don Miguel Ruiz, Jr…his daddy wrote the Four Agreements, The Untethered Soul by Michael Singer or A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle.
Once I started doing the work. Once I started listening to my inner self. Once I realized that therapy was not the end all for a peaceful life. Once I was introduced to the possibilities, I started changing….I started reading books and listening to the people close to me who had a different outlook on living the best life for themselves. Once I calmed down and realized that many of my opinions, behaviors, prejudices and judgements were not really mine but belonged to the people who either shaped me in my childhood or were learned from my emotionally fearful peers, I started figuring out where my bottom line of recovery needed to start. I do not believe that this learning ever stops. I believe that just because you KNOW, you are just on a different path…but I don’t think I will ever really KNOW in this lifetime.
One of my first ah ha moments was when I read an article about being an empath. I teared up recognizing myself in the words. It resonated with me…I was in my knowing. I knew I was an empath. This morning a Facebook friend shared This empath article. Which sent me to my dear diary blog to document my thoughts….and share it with someone else who may need the insight or nudge.
When I was a child, our family.. dad, mom and Nina Sue would visit Grandma in tiny town, Nichols, Iowa a few times a year. These were special times for me because it was my dad’s hometown and he would always take me with him to socialize with old friends at Chown’s Appliance, the DX Station and Rice’s Cafe. We always stopped in The Cafe to get me a fountain drink and talk to Neva Rice and the woman he called Grandma Rice. Just thinking about Rice’s Cafe, I can still see the ceiling fans and hear the wooden screen door slam shut every time someone came in or out.
A couple years ago I connected with an old classmate of mine. We went through school together and we had all of the same teachers and home rooms except for kindergarten…and….I would not define us really as friends in school…more childhood acquainted. After awhile, I also connected with his wife on FB….mainly reference some comments we shared on FB about some health issues Chuck was enduring. Over the last couple of years, we developed our own friendship and a mutual bond developed. Sue and I finally met in person tonight in a hospital room in Duluth,MN. He and I planned a mini vacation to visit his brother in New Ulm, revisit the North Shore and stop in and see Sue and Chuck who live north of Duluth. As timing would have it, we had to visit them in a hospital room as he had not been released after a recent surgery.
And now the connection! I asked Chuck if he had any relatives in small town, Nichols, Iowa. I’d always been curious because of his last name…he said no…but Sue piped up and said she did. She had relatives…two women…a mother and daughter….Neva Rice and her mother owned a cafe in Nichols when she was young…..Rice’s Cafe.
Things like this cannot be coincidences. This was synchronicity at its best. I am blessed!
Where I am in my life, tripping over things is okay….the best way I can explain being okay with tripping is it doesn’t hurt as much as falling down or falling over the cliff. I have been on a path of self discovery for many years….mainly because I didn’t like to spend time with myself and my negative thoughts and I knew there was something I didn’t understand about life and living…..I knew that an inner peace was achievable and the journey was not going to be easy. I guess what I didn’t really realize that I would have to take this journey one step at a time rather than trudging up the hill in an hour or a day. It started when I was about 25 and I’m closing in on 62 and every single day I learn a new way of thinking, a new way of being….a new way to live life. It’s like the picture slide projector from the 60s…we would have our pictures developed into little squares with cardboard surround and we would put those in a Kodak projector shining on a white wall or screen and one by one we would view these pictures with a click of a button.
Sometimes a very slow process because if you clicked too fast, the machine would jam. Sometimes we would linger on a certain picture in order to remark about it, reminisce about a memory associated with it or attempt to figure out exactly why we took the picture.
We all start on the road from a different intersection and we meet others at different Crossroads. Sometimes we choose to walk along with them other times we choose to continue alone…..but the bottom line is we must keep moving…up that hill even if we fall down and if we go over the cliff?? Well, it’s a long way back up to where we were but with skinned knees and injured pride, we will know what to watch for as we continue.
Back in the 60’s my mother was a legal secretary for a law firm in Des Moines. I was probably about 8 or 9 when Linda came into our lives as a high school girl hired to work part time in this law firm basically under the tutelage of my mother. Linda had a strong connection with my mother and visa versa. Linda came to our home – mom taught Linda how to make peanut brittle – Linda was part of the conversations I heard at home. My mother and I went to Linda’s parent’s home…lots of vague memories stored in my memory vault. Linda got married and left the law firm and my mother, for the most part, lost contact with Linda.
Those of you who know me or have read my blogs know that I had a very difficult childhood and adult relationship with my mother. Recently I started feeling strong and curious enough to start going through totes of papers, pictures, genealogy research that belonged to her. Today amongst a lot of very old family letters and pictures, I opened an envelope with pictures and a letter written by Linda to my mother in 1990. It was a catch up letter. I was immediately compelled to google her to see whatever happened to her….she is on FB and for some reason, I didn’t stop there, I friended her on FB and sent her a message on FB messenger introducing myself … which she answered immediately. She sent me her phone number and another higher power connection was made. This was a phone call of tears, laughter and incredible healing as I found her soul open, understanding and loving. My connection with her was immediate!
….and then here is the irony. When Linda found out where I lived, she mentioned that she was supposed to come to the Kansas City area last week to pick up a shih tzu dog from a breeder as Linda fosters, trains and places dogs with forever homes. But last week, the weather was cold and rainy and fortunately Linda came down with a bad head cold so she had to postpone the trip. Perhaps the story should read that because our energy had yet to connect, Linda had to postpone the trip until sometime later this month…and the absolute shocking detail is that the breeder lives 7 minutes from me in this town of 8,000 people. Now what do you make of that?
Linda and I will meet, I will give her a big hug and I will continue to tear up and feel the love and energy from this totally unexpected, unexplainable connection from our past.