Saturday, June 23, 2012

An Itch That (thankfully) Won't Be Scratched

I received a present from a yoga student and friend of mine the other day in the mail. First of all, I was so grateful for the present, for the thought that she took her time and money to give me this present that I would've been happy even if the book wasn't any good. However, that is not the case. The book is The Way of the Happy Woman by Sara Avant Stover. I have to say, just reading the foreward of this book was enough for me at this very moment. I can't get past it. The foreward was written by Jennifer Louden and in it she speaks to the center of my heart.

She describes something that I've felt for a long time now but never really understood like this until she said it. "I live every single day with a fierce longing in me, a longing that pushes me, prods me, tantalizes me- a desire that flames at the back of my heart, an itch I can never quite scratch. It's a longing to help make a better world, to fully live this one precious life I have, to be sure everyone gets a chance to live fully." Up until this part of the quote, I am good. I have understood this about myself and I assume many of us feel this way. I may not have been able to put it as eloquently or wholly as Jennifer did, but my soul knew this. It is this next part that makes me want to cry out...yes! this is it! it all makes sense!

She continues, "I used to use books like this one to try to make the longing go away- to fix it or to finally understand it. I understand now that the longing I feel is never going away. It's not supposed to. It's a divine itch, and our job is to use it to be of service in a way that gives voice to it: to use it as a fuel to keep going. To use it to find the courage to bring our genius to the world."

Oh. My. God. Thank you.

To stop searching for a way to understand the feeling, or to ultimately satisfy it thereby controlling it, and instead to just accept it and use it to help bring our particular brand of "genius" out in service of ourselves, others and the world in general. Sigh. What a relief that it doesn't have to be figured out. Just do your best with your own personal longing, molding it into your own personal piece of art for the world to benefit by it's very existence. I am so thankful for this book and for the friend who was the conduit for me to receive it!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Learning Curves

"Everyone should be born into this world happy
and loving everything.
But in truth it rarely works that way.
For myself, I have spent my life clamoring toward it.
Halleluiah, anyway I'm not where I started!

And have you too been trudging like that, sometimes
almost forgetting how wondrous the world is
and how miraculously kind some people can be?
And have you too decided that probably nothing important
is ever easy?
Not, say, for the first sixty years.

Hallelluiah, I'm sixty now, and even a little more,
and some days I feel I have wings."

-Halleluiah, a poem by Mary Oliver

I had a bit too much wine this evening, which was nice, and then I let a man get under my skin about something stupid. We're all human (even yoga instructors with soothing yoga voices). And sometimes we can forget that other people, being human, will act in strange ways (and then our soothing yoga voices become a little un-soothing). But I am awake at 3:30 and I am thinking about the complexity of life and people and relationships.

And yet, I am also marveling at "how wondrous the world is" that allows all of this beautiful complexity to exist.

Today is my anniversary and also my grandmother's birthday. Two events that have shaped my life. Two people who have loved me dearly and who I have loved back. What a lucky girl am I?

May we all get better at counting our blessings in the face of our challenges, but also love that part of ourselves that is not always strong, that needs us to give it a hug and a smile. That's ok, too. We're all on a learning curve and "nothing important is ever easy." Amen, sister. Amen.

Sunday, June 17, 2012


"Oh, the comfort, the inexpressible comfort of feeling safe with a person; having neither to weigh thoughts nor measure words, but to pour them all out, just as they are, chaff and grain together, knowing that a faithful hand will take and sift them, keep what is worth keeping, and then, with a breath of kindness, blow the rest away."
— George Eliot

So forever grateful for these people in my life. Feeling safe with putting yourself out there to another with no judgement is indeed priceless. Thank God for true friends, especially ones who let you "pour them all out, just as they are." :) 

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

So Beautiful.

Had to share this poem. Never post other people's stuff...but why not?

Live Blindly and Upon the Hour 
by Trumbull Stickney

Live blindly and upon the hour. The Lord, 
Who was the Future, died full long ago. 
Knowledge which is the Past is folly. Go, 
Poor, child, and be not to thyself abhorred. 
Around thine earth sun-winged winds do blow 
And planets roll; a meteor draws his sword; 
The rainbow breaks his seven-coloured chord 
And the long strips of river-silver flow: 
Awake! Give thyself to the lovely hours. 
Drinking their lips, catch thou the dream in flight 
About their fragile hairs' aerial gold. 
Thou art divine, thou livest,—as of old 
Apollo springing naked to the light, 
And all his island shivered into flowers.