Practicing Mindfulness is a Sure Path to Having More Sacred Moments Everyday
Mindfulness. Last year I told one of my friends that I’d found a way to slow down time. I found a way to do things in slow motion that made time last longer. I was stoked. EXCITED!
I couldn’t really explain it – I only saw that I was doing it and I knew that it could be done. It entailed complete focus and awareness. If I were to simplify it, I would say that I was moving with the rhythm of the universe. Have you ever heard the saying, “Grass does not strain to grow.”? If you are feeling rushed, things are falling out of your hands or you keep having to turn back for something you forgot, just stop. These are signs that you are not in alignment and that you should slow down. The energy of rushing and hastiness will not yield better results. They actually tip your vibration in the direction of unwanted and chaotic.
Lately, when this happens, and I catch myself (key words: and I catch myself)I just stop.
I stop and I breathe or I intentionally move slower. Anyone close enough to me knows that I love ease and flow and flow and ease – in every way. I may not always practice it and sure, there are days I’m not in alignment with the things I believe. But, I know what it feels like to be in alignment and when I’m there, it’s pure bliss.
At any rate, I couldn’t make much sense of this new found ability. I only somehow became aware of it, as if I were an avatar redirecting energy.
Oh, but actually I am.
Hello. It’s me.
After listening to one of Eckhart Tolle’s YouTube videos where he explained what mindfulness is, it occurred to me that “slowing down time” was very similar to what he saying. It was all tied to awareness, being fully present, mindfulness etc. I wanted to make a deliberate attempt to fully immerse myself in a moment. Tolle described what it would be like to put all your focus into any and everything you do – from making tea, to walking, to cleaning etc. These are the tiny moments that we often take for granted – and yet they provide the most magical everyday paths to practice awareness, or mindfulness.
We tend to fixate our attention on the past or the future and we forget “The Now”.
“The Now”, where all the power lies – the only space we really have control. Yesterday is gone, even two minutes ago is gone and tomorrow is often filled with thoughts and worries that may likely never occur. Deep down, I know this.
God Bless the days I practice what I know to be true haha.
Teachings of Lao Tzu
Imagine, if you will, the following scenario in slow motion. Take one deep, slow breath and bring all your awareness to the next couple paragraphs. Relive this time and space with me.
Ready? Breathe… Read….
I reach up and open the dark wooden cupboard door. It makes a slight screeching sound and the movement generates a tiny wind that brushes pass my face and makes a few of my curly locks dance ever so gently. My eyes find my favorite coffee cup on the shelf. It’s white and shaped like a teapot with blue print designs on it. The designs remind me of china my mom used to cherish. I take the cup off the shelf and set it on the cold granite counter top. It makes a tiny clink, like when two wine glasses lightly tap each other to celebrate. There’s a brief moment of hearing “Cheers”. It’s fleeting but I hear it. My hand automatically closes the cupboard door but my eyes are on the prize – coffee.
The house is completely silent. I am fully aware of the sounds around me, where my eyes are, what my focus is and then it all fades to total connection with my breath. It flows in and out of my body – my life force. Without her, I couldn’t be here. She is all I am, the core of me – outside of any labels, possessions, wants, desires, discontent or pleasure.
My breath – in, out. In, out – filling my chest, my lungs and my tummy, expanding my vessel … then releasing. And, repeat.
My only focus in this moment IS this moment.
I grab my tablespoon and dip it in the plastic container, scooping a heaping spoonful of instant coffee. The sound of the spoon reaching into the coffee grounds is very audible to me. It goes in and crystal like coffee powder piles up on top of each other and just as the spoon is about to emerge, tiny bits fall back down. I steadily lift the spoon out and the other clink comes when the tablespoon touches the cup and again I hear the sliding of the coffee grounds as they make their way into this tiny empty space.
My awareness shifts to the boiling water. The bubbling sound is letting me know it’s almost ready and the steam is beautifully escaping the electric white kettle, gracefully floating upwards.
I hear the click from the kettle – the water is boiled. 100 degrees celsius. I make a few steps to my left and release the kettle from its base, pouring the boiling water into the cup. Hot water and steam engulf the space and the coffee crystals swirl around like dancers around a bonfire. I pour my creamer into mix and start to stir my morning joe. The spoon edges against the inner parameters of the cup and then at the rim. I lift it out and tap it a couple times on the edge. Clink clink again. Cheers!
Inhale. Exhale. Coffee.
My mind is fully concentrated on just this moment. Again, I become fully aware of my breath… inhale, exhale – coffee.
This is mindfulness. It is complete immersion into any given moment. It’s filled with awareness and silence and it is pure magic.
If I were to hone in on what my first interaction with mindfulness was, it would be almost a decade ago when I was riding my bike as a part of my usual work out routine. I became fully aware of my hair blowing in the wind. Only then, I didn’t know what it was nor did I have a label for it. It was just a moment that I loved and I started to become more and more aware of moments like it. All those moments eventually lead me to believing that I could slow down time but all I was practicing was mindfulness – being fully present.
Silence has become one of my best friends, especially in recent months. Often times, I find it’s the only way to balance myself when things feel like they are out of control. A couple years ago, I did a weekend job that left me so exhausted that I couldn’t talk for two days. My energy was drawn in ways I never knew was possible. I ended up tuning in to someone else’s life in a way that shook her and the people around me. Even I didn’t understand what was happening.
It was like I went directly into her energy field, picked up pieces of her life and shared them with her verbally. She leaned on me physically and emotionally and when I left that space, I was drained.
Silence came naturally after that weekend and was the only way to recovery. It centered me and allowed me to pull my energies back to my core. Practicing yoga and being drawn to inversions, I learned that headstands were another way for me to stop time.
Headstands and Mindfulness
People have often asked me why I love doing headstands. The main reason I love doing headstands is because in that moment, nothing else matters but! My focus is my body and my balance. My mind is completely engaged in controlling my stance. There is no room for anything else but that moment. It is one of THE BEST ways for me to become fully present and be in The Power of Now.
As I become more aware of my energy, where it goes and when it’s being overstimulated, I find that I can more readily reel it back to myself. Reeling it back almost always begins with mindfulness which always includes silence and awareness. We often pride ourselves on being able to multitask and I suppose in many aspects, it is indeed a gift.
My personal experience though, is that the more you do one thing at a time with full focus on that one thing, the better it will be for you, the action you’re taking and the result it will bring. You will also find yourself feeling better about each thing you are doing. As I was completing this yesterday, I saw this post by Dandapani and had to steal it. One thing at a time. Slowly, and with your full attention equals bliss… resonates with mindfulness, full presence and breath.
For many people, the only way to truly practice sacredness is to include church, prayer or meditation.
But, everything is relative. Attending church may be one way to connect to God but an even more amazing way is to do it when making a cup of coffee. This would mean that the connection to God is being integrated in the simplest to the grandest moments as you live your life. Practicing mindfulness is a sure path to having more sacred moments everyday.
Awareness while making my coffee that morning was not just about slowing down time, it was about being completely immersed in the now, fully aware and connected to my breath. It was the observer inside me – where there is no label, no need, no want – just existence, pure energy.
Any time that I am fully aware of my being, my breath and my actions is a moment I am practicing awareness. In those moments, I am not consumed by my ego, my doings, my worries, my woes – I simply Am.
I Am, two of the most powerful words we could possibly utter and the more that mindfulness is practiced, the more I Am moments there are to be had. Try it… When you find yourself noticing your breath above all else, it will hit you and hopefully you’ll smile and recognize it as mindfulness and these words may make more sense to you.
The Letter ‘A’ Makes the Sound ‘Ah’ for Apples – The Learning Curve of My Son, the Lyricist
“He’s not learning at the pace I expect him to and I feel it’s best he repeat this year”, said Ms Heusner of Belize Elementary School (BES), Belize City. My heart sank. “What does she know!”, I thought. I was upset. She had to be wrong. My son was 3 years old at the time. How could he possibly need to repeat? It was ABC, for crying out loud. Of course he’ll catch on.
“No, he won’t repeat. Move him forward.” I retorted. I knew that it was an unfair assessment. I had a flashback to a moment I had with him in the kitchen just some weeks before.
Just Another Typical Boy
“Mommy, please send chocolate for teacher tomorrow”, he said to me as he pulsed himself up on the kitchen sink staring up at me with his beautiful dark eyes. “Why do I need to send chocolate Deej?”, I asked. “Because that’s what makes teacher good.” he said confidently. “We don’t give chocolate so people like us babe.” I responded.
“I’m on to you,”, I thought to myself.
Well that was it. That’s what this was about. He wasn’t one of the kids who took gifts for the teacher and now this is the result. She wants him to repeat. She thinks he’s having trouble learning ABCs but look at this insightful and observant 3 year old already assessing that if he takes chocolate for the teacher, things will be a lot smoother for him.
That school year I had to leave the country for a month and took my son with me. I convinced myself that it was the only reason he didn’t catch on to his ABCs. And, she wants him to repeat for that AND because he doesn’t take chocolate! THE NERVE!
DEEEFENSE! Stomp Stomp Stomp!
I felt like I was at a local basketball game I used to go years before at the Civic Center in Belize City.
I was in defensive mode and I didn’t want to see or hear Ms Heusner’s insight into my son.
He wasn’t learning ABCs but he drew a beautiful turtle without a picture to reference at only 2 years old and without prompts from anyone to do so. Obviously something was wrong with them. Yes, this was my solid reasoning. I kid you not. Defensive mode is a hell of a thing.
Mr Turtle by DeJean Wright
Ms Heusner had at least, or just under, two decades of teaching under her belt by then but in my dismay, none of that mattered or even occurred to me. I didn’t want to acknowledge it. He went on to Kindergarten with Ms Burns and the struggle continued. She tried to help him using the sand outside so he could draw letters in the sand and associate it with sound. I bought ABCs in the forms of tangible letters that we could use to play and do fights with so he could remember the sound that went with each one.
Hardly anything stuck.
He now says he lost his drawing skills. As if…
The Letter ‘A’ Makes the Sound “ah” for Apple!
Not for my son. ‘A’ made the sound ay like hay, say and day.
E made the sound e like eel, easy and erode but not eh like elephant.
He was extremely phonetic and I had to find my way with how he learned and how he saw the world. It was just exactly as he heard it.
When there were parades at school and he had to wear a hat, he threw a fit. Just about every other child was happy and content and my son cried through the entire process. He didn’t like conforming to the norm and hated wearing the hat they put on him. DeJean never reported back what happened in school other than remembering that the teacher is pleased if you take her chocolates. Days of the week were only important if it involved a holiday and still asks me what day of the week it is from time to time.
I searched for years to find a way to teach him the alphabet and the varying sounds.
It felt like like I’d been around the world and back searching for a way that made sense to him. Finally, I found a system out of the UK – well, it was on a UK site. Each sound accompanied an action. So A makes the sound ah like ants and with that word there was an action of ants running up his hands and so on. Tying an action to the letter and the sound finally resonated with him and a very slight introduction to reading was made. He was around 6 years old.
No Tooth Sugar, a Belizean saying.
Maybe He Needs a Filter (Not SnapChat Type)
My aunt told me about one of my cousins who took some tests and learned that some people can read better when there’s a color filter over the words. Maybe it would work for DeJean but he would need tests. No problem. I’d try just about anything to get the help he needed.
We made our appointment at the Irlen Institute in California on July 30th 2008. We wanted to see if maybe using a color shield over the text he was seeing would be the solution for him. It worked for my cousin. Maybe it was an easy solution to his reading hurdles.
The details are blurry to me now. All I remember is a dark room and a big desk and words that had little meaning to me. These tests were more ideal for 7 year olds. DeJean had just turned 6 but I was desperate for solutions and insisted that they see him. They complied.
Problem was, it would have been better to wait til he was 7. I wanted a diagnosis. Typical human behavior I guess.
I was expecting to be something like this. “He has dyslexia. Use this filter and all the words will appear correctly.” YES! Problem solved. NO.
A Myriad of Profiles
“Your son fits a myriad of profiles Ms Shaw”, Shirley said to me. Again, my heart sank. What do these people know anyway? Maybe they don’t even know what they are doing. “He’s a little bit of a lot of things. We see dyslexia, a little ADD…” she went on. “So you can’t just tell me one thing he fits that we could just work on?,” I interrupted. We made a long trip to see her and all she could say was that he fit many profiles and they couldn’t truly diagnose him til he was 7.
“Well, then why did you agree to see us,” I was rolling my eyes back and forth from her office to Timboktu. I forgot that I was the one who insisted.
We left with a report that made some suggestions for his current school at the time. The ones that struck out mostly were the following:
Don’t mark his work with lots of red ink everywhere. It sends a terrible message to a child like him.
If there are errands to be run, choose a kid like DeJean. The tiny distractions will help him tremendously.
Lessen the amount of work he gets and make it simpler.
I met with his principal, Mrs Nisbet, and shared all the notes. The teachers tried to adhere but with at least 25 to 30 other kids in their classes, it was hard to keep track of what suits each child.
Dancing Michael Jackson
After School Sessions
Each new school year brought new challenges for my boy and consequently me.
Besides what I tried on my own, he had countless teachers who wanted so much to help him. They all tried wholeheartedly. After school sessions with Ms Revers and Ms Padilla were helping but only a nudge in the direction we all hoped for. They were tending to other kids at the same time and trying to reach each one with the same effort. Ms Karima, yet another teacher, used to come to our home a couple times a week. It helped him edge along only a little bit. Evening classes with Ms Viola and Ms Lara were yet another attempt at getting him to up to par with his peers. Each little accomplishment meant so much to each teacher.
Having a child like me has shown me what a gift it is to teach. I can tell you that I don’t have it, unless you want to learn about the The Secret. He’s helped me to see the best and worst of myself in trying to teach him.
TEACHING IS A GIFT!
New School. New Chance. Not Quite.
Once he finished his Infant 2 year, BES decided he would need to repeat. It wasn’t up to me this time. A decision was made by the administration and it was out of my control.
So, I moved him. A new school was forming and I was full of hope. He would repeat but he wouldn’t notice because it was a new school with new kids. All was well in my world. New school. New Chance. Not Quite.
He made quite a bit of progress but not enough and I decided to switch him back to where he first started. He was given the chance to be in Standard 1, trusting that since he actually did repeat Infant 2 at a different school, he was caught up.
June 2012. I was right back where I started.
Old School. Second Chance. Same Problem.
“Jeannie, we’ll have to repeat DeJean. He’s just not learning the way we need him to.” Mrs Nisbet said to me. Old school. Second chance. Same problem.
There I was, back where I started. Her neatly organized office and desk and my scattered brains.
“It’s as if there’s like a little man in his body who receives and delivers information. But when he goes in to get the files as needed, he becomes confused and either can’t find them or can’t bring them to the surface,” said Majiba, the vice principal at the time. “He needs help we don’t feel we can give him. We are willing to try but he has to repeat.” Mrs Nisbet added.
How many times can your heart sink on one recurring matter? A million times, to date lol.
I hardly held it together enough to make it to my car outside. Once I got inside, the sobbing began. Where had I gone wrong? If only I didn’t take that month off. I didn’t do enough with him at home with his ABCs. No one told me how to do this. We should have spent hours working everyday.
My self blame was as rampant as the traffic around me. I could hardly breathe. What else could I do?
Today, I still ask myself that same question. What else could I do?
My son, DeJean Elizon Wright, still learns differently and the words I hear still hear now from teachers sound terribly familiar. He did go on to find more advanced solutions. However, either years of red marks all over his papers have affected his whole perspective on traditional education OR it’s just not for him.
My Greatness Staring at God’s Greatness
Sorry To Bother You
Conversations with him will mislead you into thinking he’s just the average teenager as far as education is concerned. His wit and humor will make you wonder if I’m telling stories about how he learns differently. His comebacks to me on a daily basis often send me into spirals of laughter, like last week when I wanted him to go see a movie.
“Deej, do you want to go see a movie?” I asked. “What’s the name of the movie”, he replied. “Sorry to bother you.” I responded. “Um no, but that should have been your first words to me when you opened my door!” he spat back at me in jest. “Hahaha” I couldn’t help myself. Maybe it’s our dry humor from my dad. Someone else might see it as rude but for us it’s humor and it often grabs me in giggles.
I’d guess this is where his writing comes from. Like his mom, he has a way with words. He may not spell them correctly although he’s gotten a lot better but he will spit them out mostly with ease and most especially when he’s writing.
Beats on YouTube
A few years ago he decided he wanted to try writing to beats he found on YouTube. The kid that took 3 extra years to understand that a makes the sound ah like apple learned how to find beats, write lyrics to it, create videos and upload them with ease. Absolutely no help from me. It was something he loved to do. It served his spirit and gave him a sense of purpose. No one was monitoring his spelling or expecting him to learn at their pace.
There are so many ways I can relate to my son. School was something I worked hard at. Science and Math still hardly make sense to me and I still don’t see the point of chemistry, for example, in education unless they are tied to a child’s dreams and goals. I couldn’t possibly tell my son all the ways in which I agree with him.
A Gentle Giant of a Kid
He has bigger dreams at 16 years old than I have in my 20s right now. Yes, my 20s. Young chick here. This year he didn’t want to celebrate his birthday because he didn’t achieve some goals he set for himself. Not a single one of them had to with school, as you may have guessed by now. BUT the vision he has for himself, I have yet to formulate for myself.
I’ve gently dosed him with the concept of The Secret, affirmations and visualizations and maybe he uses them without realizing because some how he brought at least one thing to himself at 16 years old – a song.
Fast forward to recent months when an old friend and I rekindled our communication from 20+ years ago. His artist name is Geronimo Wild Apache, born Adrian Sanker from Corozal, Belize. He is the owner of Dreemwurl Entertainment and saw a chance to, at the very least, inspire a young man to continue with his love of music. “Bring him by the studio and let him record with me”, he said.
I agreed. The sound and clarity would be better than what DeJean set up in his room. It would open DeJean up a little more since his teenage years took him to more quiet place overall.
Before long, he was writing to more and more songs and learning to record and edit himself in the studio. Geronimo’s connections lead DeJean to meeting artist Dignitary Stylish, born Horace Samuels from Portmore, Jamaica.
“Mi have a song mi want him sing pahn” Dignitary said to me on one of my many pick ups from Geronimo’s home studio. “He is a talented youth, enuh. He can goh far.” he added.
I felt proud. I’d heard Dignitary’s vocal and writing skills and felt good that he saw the talent in my son.
So, there he was. 16 years old and spending hours upon hours in studio with men double and triple his age and fitting right in. Not the typical 16 year old at all.
DeJean in Dreemwurl Entertainment Home Studio
Money Maker by Dignitary Stylish
Little did I know how serious Dignitary was.
DeJean was given the opportunity to write the lyrics for the first portion of Dignitary’s latest release.
“I just gave him lickle guidance and him bring it.” Dignitary said.
The kid who couldn’t understand that the letter a makes the sound ah was spitting lyrics like “my neck froze, I ain’t worried ’bout a drought” and “yea I’m really fired up, burnt darth vader.” He doesn’t know what a metaphor is but uses them naturally in all his writing.
The song is “Money Maker” and was officially released this week on all major music distribution platforms. 99c for each download. YES, I’m encouraging you to buy.
My son, the lyricist, was featured on a song!
Awaiting his first radio interview at KXLU Los Angeles with Junior Francis
Ms Heusner was Right
Turns out Ms Heusner was right about my son’s learning hurdles. She saw them within months of teaching him. I was just being a defensive mom who wanted to believe that every adventure with my son would be easy. It’s not. It still isn’t.
Every teacher has contributed so much to his life and learning even if he doesn’t realize it. Some teachers more than others, like Ms Moore who is the only teacher who got my son to do long division on his own. He was somehow also drawn to his Science teacher Mr Garcia and his English teacher Mrs Portillo from middle school. Some teachers touched him more than others and every name I’ve mentioned here is one of those teachers for him.
The Strong Silent Type
DeJean is the strong silent type. Like his mom. He looks easy going – his quiet ways will easily mislead you. DeJean doesn’t like to conform to the norm and fights it in the smallest and biggest ways. School is still his least favorite place in all the world. I’m still hearing the same concerns from all his teachers many years later. I likely won’t be the mom who gets to take pics of him at prom. He doesn’t see the point of prom and finds it all ridiculous – FOR HIM. He’ll smile and sweetly comment to me on his friends’ pics and accomplishments.
Some weeks ago, I proudly declared to him that Jayda (whose mom is like a sister to me) ranked 2nd place for the Belize District Spelling Bee. “Jayda came in 2nd for spelling in Belize Deej!” I excitedly told him that evening. “It’s JAYDA mom! Why would you even be surprised? Tell her congrats.” he said. He loves it and admires it but acknowledges that it won’t be him.
I’m slowly coming to terms with that although I should know by now. No Spelling Bee wins and no proms.
But a few amazing model pics might give me some other stuff to brag about like this pic of him in Santa Monica, California.
DeJean Wright, modeling for promo pics.
My Son is a Lyricist
And today I get to tell you that my son is a lyricist and he was featured on a song that’s now available for download at only 99c. Yes, another attempt to get you to buy. If you’ve read this far, don’t you think you should just give in?
I get to tell you that he’s funny, sweet, laid back and can read my energy from miles away. He has a way with animals and grew to be 6′ 2″ so far. Now I’m the one staring up at him with my beautiful dark eyes full of love for all that he is.
I don’t know what his future holds for him in terms of education but I’m thankful that two grown men, a Belizean and a Jamaican, saw a young man with writing and rapping skills and decided to give him the opportunity to record and later actually on an officially released dancehall tune with one of Jamaica’s veterans.
Who knew that a friendship from 20+ years ago would lead to that same person being so welcoming, hospitable and kind to my giant of a son. You just never know how life will unfold.
BZE Kings by DeJean Wright
Whatever learning style your child has, there may something else there waiting to be explored. If your child isn’t learning like the other kids or at the pace they are learning, there may be something else there yet to unfold.
While many days have been hard getting DeJean to focus, some how guidance finds him through people who are maybe strategically placed in our lives and us in theirs. He was encouraged to find a way to make money which lead him to coming up with a design for merchandise.
So, I get to tell you also that he came up with a design to promote young men in Belize to see themselves as Kings. I helped him to open an online shop to sell his merch. When he gave me his first draft for the BZEKings idea, I didn’t agree and went another way with it.
DeJean insisted that he wanted the Belize flag on it and whatever other elements he included in his drawing. Turns out, he was right. No one liked my version. Just his. He’s also received interest in having BZEQueens available which has been added to his product list.
5 Simple Steps on How To Meditate & Why You Should Do It At Least Once a Day
Meditation found me years ago but at the time I didn’t understand what it was or that it even existed.
My mom believed in prayers and shared some of her rituals with me, some of which I still practice to this day. My dad was an atheist but there were a few times he admitted to believing in a higher power or source. That was as far as he’d go with it. Otherwise, he’d just joke about St Peter not allowing him into the pearly gates of heaven. He believed that people took the Bible too literally and much of its true meaning was often lost in interpretation. Prayer was certainly not a part of his daily life but maybe meditation was at times.
I wonder now if he realized that as he canoed down the Sibun River, Belize, it’s very likely that he was meditating. I am guessing that his focus was often directed to the sound of the river, the falling of leaves into the water and the sunlight glistening on the tiny waves around him. He was likely in tuned with the movement of his body as he switched his paddle from side to side, going downstream in the middle of rich forestry in his favorite country in all the world.
He probably reached constant states of elevation by allowing “absence of thought” to find him. Even he, the non believer, the smoking meditator (haha) surely found solace in those moments where thoughts escaped him and his only focus was to simply be alive. He was, in essence… meditating.
My dad canoeing down Sibun River, Belize
What is Meditation?
Often times, people think meditation is about controlling thoughts but it’s not. It is defined as a mental exercise (such as concentration on one’s breathing or repetition of a mantra) for the purpose of reaching a heightened level of spiritual awareness. The basis of meditation, or what you’re trying to accomplish is to be in a place where there is “absence of thought”.
It has zero to do with controlling your thoughts. Trying to control your thoughts can make meditation frustrating. My friend Florence often soothed me with her assurance that the thoughts will come and they will go… let them rise and let them fall.
Thoughts will always come forth whether you’re meditating or not. That’s the gift of the mind – a tool for us to use to think when needed, except for Math. Don’t waste your mind on Math. There are no answers. Trust me, I’ve tried.
What’s True For You?
Besides that general misconception about meditation, many people also imagine that it requires sitting in lotus position while making the OM sound for hours on end. Like most things, meditation is about what’s true for you, including how you position your body, what you focus on, how long you do it, what sound you make etc. Most of life almost always comes down to what is true for you.
The basis of it all is simply to reach a place where there is absence of thought. This place or moment is often brief. The timespan and feeling may be different for everyone. For me, it’s like an escape that leads to a connection to something far more powerful than I. Imagine this place like the gateway to your connection with God or Source or Spirit, whatever name rings true for you.
Visualize, if you will, walking down a path and easing into light, clarity and peace – that’s kind of what it feels like for me. More often than not, I don’t even realize I’m there til it passes and I take another breath hoping to find it again.
Noticing moments like these are the tiny glimpses into what it feels like to be connected to Source.
How Long Should You Meditate?
15 to 20 minutes is a good time slot for meditation, generally. While you’re meditating, you may find that this “place” (absence of thought) lasts for 3 minutes or less. Even if it’s only that, it will have served you well. It is like opening your bandwidth to receive. Once you experience this, it’s very likely you’ll want to experience it again and again.
Meditating for 15 minutes everyday will make way for more ease and flow in your daily life. As you continue on your journey, you’ll find that you receive guidance more readily on small and big things. In the days, weeks and months that follow, things become increasingly clearer to you. This even includes things like what to cook, which way to turn, who to call, when to stay home etc.
Unshaken and Unmoved
Every time I am out of sync with my meditation practice, quiet and down time, things feel disruptive. My mind gets foggy and I’m more easily overwhelmed, like yesterday when I found myself feeling lost. I know a lot of these feelings of disconnect are tied to a lack of meditation.
I can remember times being so in tuned with my connection to God that I felt I could walk blindfolded. Can you imagine what that kind of guidance feels like?
There is a feeling of being grounded that comes when we keep our connection to Source alive. It’s as if you’re a giant tree – your exterior may sway and dance in the wind or the what is reality but, the core of you is unshaken and unmoved.
There were times meditation meant doing yoga, heading out on a hike or just being generally quiet. Whatever ways I found, they were like a lifeline to a place of calm and knowing.
Meditation aligns you with feeling more grounded.
Inspired Action vs Motivated Action
Answers come and you are lead more by inspired action instead of motivated action.
Motivated action can be narrowed down to the things you “must do” for a specific outcome. Inspired action can be narrowed down to things you are lead to do by your intuition. The outcome is almost irrelevant. You just know what to do, when to do it, how to do it and it just flows. Period.
Life is so much easier when we allow our higher self to guide us. That guidance comes from a place of clarity, ease and flow and that space is created when we meditate.
Outside of doing Yoga, taking a hike or just finding quiet time alone, you may be considering the conventional concept of meditation. Minus the lotus position and making the OM sound for hours on end, here’s my simple take on how to include “conventional meditation” as a part of your daily life.
Focus on Your Breath or the Air-Conditioning
One of things to keep in mind when meditating is that you’re trying to find something to focus on that has no meaning to you. This could be the flickering of a flame, your breath as it goes in and out of your tummy or even the air-conditioning. I learned about listening to the air-conditioning from Esther Hicks. It really is a splendid idea.
Basically, you want to connect to an action (breath) or object (flame) that doesn’t evoke thought.
Today is 100 degrees outside. Focusing on the air-conditioning won’t work because all I’ll be thinking is that it needs more freon. It is super duper hot in here today!
If you choose to focus on your breath, use your visualization to follow it. As you breathe in, connect to it. You’ll become distinctly aware of its magnificence.
As it enters, follow it and let it go all the way down to your tummy. Most people tend to breathe in and they think it stops at their chest.
The action of inhaling basically fills your body with oxygen – first to your lungs then to your heart and onward to the rest of your body. As your chest and tummy feel filled with air, slowly release that breath and start it all over again.
5 Simple Steps Before You Inhale, Exhale… Namaste
1. Find a quiet and spacious spot in your home that’s easy to access at all times.
Is it possible to put something in that space that is a reminder of meditation, quiet or silence? It will help to create a visual/internal understanding that this is your place of meditation. Some people use an altar but you might use a simple photo or element that tells you “This is the spot where I connect to my higher self”.
2. Choose a time of day that works with the daily operations of your home.
If you have a big family or other people to consider then this time would be either when they are out of the house, all quiet or asleep. This time could be morning, midday or night – it all depends on what works best for your lifestyle. All you’re trying to do is establish is finding a time that works best.
3. Think of a position for your body that is comfortable.
Are you able to sit cross legged? Do you need back support? Are you better off laying on the floor? Will you likely need a chair? Consider what’s the best possible way for you to be in a still position for at least 15 minutes at a time in a way that your body will comfortable doing so. This allows you to put your attention only on your choice of focus (breath, mantra, flame, air-conditioning)
4. Set a Timer
You can set a timer for 15 minutes on your phone. I usually set mine for 18 minutes and I use the 3 minutes to light my candles or sage and get comfy.
5. Close Your Eyes
Just close your eyes and start to focus on your object of attention – breath, air-conditioning, flickering flame or whatever serves you best. As thoughts come, and they will, let them rise and let them fall. Let them come and let them go. As you become more and more aware of your ability to be connected to Source, you’ll naturally draw your focus back to your object of attention.
One Meditation A Day Helps the Clarity Stay
Before you know it, 15 minutes will have passed and you’ll carry on and get back to daily living.
Just remember, as the days, weeks and months pass you by, you’ll understand how important it is to find your way to Source at least once a day whether it be through conventional meditation, being in complete awe of a rose, falling instantly in love with a puppy or taking quiet alone times for yourself.
As with all things, there’s always more to learn. Studying the teachings of Abraham Hicks has given me a much better understanding all the ways in which we connect to our higher selves.His simplification of mediation has helped me to fully understand the purpose of it.
Some days, it’s a hummingbird outside but if I can fit in conventional meditation at least once a day, I will get back to feeling completely guided. One meditation a day helps the clarity stay.
Outside of these pointers, you can always look up meditation videos on YouTube. They are often specific to your desires. For example, if you are trying to quell anxiety or stress, just search for a meditation that helps alleviate those or any other nagging human emotions that are wreaking havoc on your feeling centered and grounded.
I’d love to know how it goes and if this post made meditation more clear to you.
What Is Your Truth? Ask, Release and Let The Answers Come
There’s only one way to heaven. So I’ve been told. It’s not my truth. Religion has shown me that people have varying beliefs that they hold firmly to. I used to wonder how would anyone know what the “REAL” truth is if two or more religions share different teachings absolutely? How do you know which one to follow? Well, you follow the truth.
But what is the truth?
My conclusion: the truth is whatever you believe it to be. Period.
My wish: that you always know what that is, for you.
A Teacher Teaches Best What He Must Learn
I met an amazing woman a few weeks ago. Her name is Caroline Larkin. As we were chatting from one thing to the next, these words flowed from her lips to my ears, “A teacher teaches best what he must learn.” Perfect! That is so me and felt like I was granted permission to teach, as imperfect as I am.
I often feel like there’s so much I want to share.
But I’m not an expert on anything so who will want to hear?
I’m a poet though as you can see. That, I can do. I can drop a rhyme out of the blue.
See I did it again 🙂
I keep wanting to share things I’m not a master at yet they keep tugging at me as if to say “Please, like the truth, set me free”. So, in all my imperfections and often not following my own advice, I long to encourage you to find your truth.
Forget The Peanut Gallery
The thing about us humans is that we always have 20/20 on everyone else’s lives. We are so in tuned with what they should do, what they are doing wrong and all the ways we would do things if it were us. We are just so insightful when it comes to others and often have minimal vision on ourselves. Listening to friends and family as we share our everyday experiences, so many of us are just not being honest with ourselves. We are either delivering our profound findings on their lives or we are bogged down with the opinions and thoughts of theirs about us. Abraham Hicks refers to this as listening to the “peanut gallery”.
It’s like trying to meditate while sport enthusiasts are watching the world cup. Although, if that’s a feat you can accomplish, I might consider just following you into all your truths. Well, not really but I’d be highly impressed.
Forget The Peanut Gallery. Hear your own voice. Find your truth.
Most times, we know exactly what to do – when to go to the store, when to visit a friend, or if we should turn back because we forgot something. The ordinary, everyday things feel seamless. Not much thought has to be given but every now and then we find ourselves feeling conflicted and unsure of the next step. These moments can be lead by something as simple as whether to attend an event or as complex as contemplating divorce.
Live and Let Live
One of easiest ways to find answers when we feel foggy and out of sync with clarity is to ask ourselves, “What is MY Truth?” and answer honestly, even if only just to self.
The moment I ask, an answer is given but there are times that I have to wait for the clarity of it to find me. Releasing the need for a response in the moment helps although more likely than not, I’d like an immediate response.
Deep down I know that eventually the answers I seek will come and they will come with a knowing I can’t deny. Understanding that the answer is true and may be true for me alone is something that’s starting to sink in. After all, I’m not here to live anyone else’s truth but my own.
“Live and Let Live”. It’s a good practice overall, especially for people or life choices I don’t understand. It’s been a work in progress but I’m learning. When we get too caught up in other people’s truths, it can create noise that doesn’t serve us. It uses up so much energy – energy I’d much rather put into my vortex of dreams and desires or a couple bars (yes a couple) of Cadbury fruit and nut chocolate with a VERY COLD coke. Awful, I know but we are discussing truths and that’s one of mine.
There’s Only One Way to Heaven
I remember being told that Yoga was evil and that doing sun salutations was basically praying to a false god. It was so serious that the concern for the sanctity of my soul seemed dyer.
There is only one way to heaven. Chanting Namu Myōhō Renge Kyō will certainly summon your entire being to the fiery depths of hell. Not to worry though, you’ll have company because that’s where all atheists go so you won’t be alone. I guess that’s where my dad went. NOT. Side note: some of the sweetest people I know are atheists, my dad not included lol. He wasn’t always nice but I appreciate that he was my “not always nice dad”. #AllIsWell
Sex before marriage is wrong, so you need to get married. Once you do marry, you can’t divorce. EVER. Just stay there in your misery because that’s the price you must pay to preserve the sanctity of your soul IF you haven’t already lost it practicing yoga.
All these belief systems that were not of my own resonance began to push their way to surface and in March of 2009, I started to release them one by one. I wanted to find my own truth.
It had to make sense TO ME, FOR ME and WITH ME.
Yoga, Meditation and The Truth
My truth continues to evolve as time goes on. Yoga and meditation provide a connection to my higher self. It helps to clear my chakras, align my body and allows for “shakti” to enter and flow through me. Then again, so does hiking and long walks, adoring a puppy or someone I love. There are many ways to connect with your higher self – it’s always about finding the ways that vibrate with you. By higher self, I mean God, Spirit, Inner Being, Source – whatever name feels good to you. Of course, that’s just my truth.
Choosing to marry someone doesn’t mean you’re stuck with them for the rest of your life. Life happens and people change and if your truth tells you it’s time to move on then it is. BUT, the truth is also that all relationships bring their own set of challenges so if you’re expecting perfection, you’ll forever be moving on. There I go, minding your business. That’s just my recent truth about marriage and relationships.
What is MY Truth?
Asking this question has been one of the most freeing things I’ve put into practice in recent weeks. What is My Truth?
It feels so good to just admit certain things to myself – what rings true for me even if it’s not in alignment with what others think or believe. The truth is I would prefer to spend my time with my “KAYA” (not cannabis, a person) than to go out with the girls sometimes. Most times. OK, maybe all times. Maybe there should be more balance. Maybe… but I’m not there right now. Truth be told, I enjoy soaking up my “KAYA” and that’s my truth.
The truth is I agree with so many of my son’s views – like why does he need to learn certain things in school? Things I’ve NEVER used in my daily life. The truth is I hear him and agree with him on so many things. He questions things that I wish he would just go along with so that I don’t have to question those things myself.
The truth is there’s no one way to do things – well, maybe. There’s only one way to put a new set of acrylic on my fingers and I’m hoping I can show the new place I go to how to do it. I digress.
The truth is I have no idea how to make these posts go viral because SEO (search engine optimization) eludes me and I often wonder who am I really writing to? Dammit, it could damn well be just to myself. “A teacher teaches best what he must learn.”
Say It Like It Is
It just feels better when you can just say it like it is – what you like, what you don’t like, what serves you best and what feels like a complete waste of your energy and time. And, if in the moment you still feel like as much as you can see the truth, you are not ready to make a different choice, the truth is that’s ok too. Sometimes the truth hurts a little, even if we are just admitting it to ourselves.
We’re all just going through our journeys learning and growing. While you’re here, try to make peace with your own truth, not what you’ve been fed or are afraid to face because of the chatter that may surround you. Just find a way to be honest with yourself even if you never utter the “truth” to anyone else. At the very least, to thine own self be true.
By now, you may have guessed that this is me, talking to myself encouraging the openness to truth.
This Is An Amazing Time To Be Alive
You are here to live your life, to connect to YOUR higher self and to create continued expansion for the universe and in doing all that, you will inevitably find your truth.
Can you imagine that there was a time when people got around without Google maps? That there was a time when handwritten letters were the “text message” of the day? How did long distance relationships survive?
My mom had a book about 4 inches thick for medical references for ailments in our family. Nowadays, I and my friends and family continue to diagnose ourselves on several websites and apps per week. Most people are walking around with the most intricate encyclopedia ever distributed, the smart phone.
We used to have to take pictures and wait two weeks to know if our belly fat was showing! So much of life is instantaneous. NOW, we can take 25 selfies before choosing the right one to post all within a matter of 5 minutes. Not that I have ever done that. Five minutes is simply not enough time.
This such an amazing time to be alive. It really is.
There’s so much available to us – so many choices we can make and so many freedoms that were once not within our reach. Why would you, in this day and age, choose anything but the truth? Your truth?
Whatever it is that’s on your mind – heavy or light… whatever answer you seek… ask yourself: What Is My Truth?
What do you want? What do you feel? What serves you best? What works for you?
Soak it in…
Whatever it is, at least YOU KNOW what your truth is. May your truth lead the way for you and clear all paths for a sweet journey through life May it all fall into place for you and me. I always want things to fall into place for me too. That’s another one of my truths. I wish it for you AND FOR ME. I can’t share all my truths though – some of them are private, some of them can be troublemakers…
But you should at least know that much since I’m pretty much being an open book in some of my writing or maybe all.
Oh! and you should probably know that I do yoga – often.
Nourish Me Sweetly – Mind, Body & Soul but Don’t Forget Your Emotions.
I’ve been giving a lot of thought to the words Nourish Me Sweetly and the life events that brought them to me. The name seemed to come out of thin air. They just sort of flew in among a myriad of thoughts as I was driving one day. I was finally coming up for air from what felt like a dark and weary place. Slowly, I was emerging to a new footing, light and some love. Slowly, but surely.
It was a much needed reminder of what it felt like to have support and to feel safe. It was sweet nourishment. And, it became all I wanted to experience.
I only wanted to entertain people, places and things that could bring sweet nourishment to me.
Nourishing Others Felt Intuitive and Easy
Growing up in a hotel and later working it, I learned to anticipate the needs of others. A part of the role you play running a small family hotel is to care about the wellbeing and safety of your guests to a certain extent. Most of them were total strangers.
Once I had my son, I understood the responsibility of completely caring for another human being. I suppose over our lifetimes, we all learn these traits albeit in different ways. On a whole, we are almost always caring for someone else on a daily basis even as we let someone with fewer items than we have check out before us in the line, or holding open a door for someone. The list can go on and on.
I was learning much of mine through service to others in a hotel setting. By and large, the nourishing of others felt intuitive and easy. To a certain degree, so was caring for myself.
9 Years of Ballet
I’d done ballet for about 9 years which instilled a sense of discipline in terms of exercise. I understood what strength and flexibility felt like and what it was like to be in a body that served me well.
Over the years, I’d learned to run for extended periods of time, did Taebo with masterful delivery, inverted my body into headstands with ease and hiked for hours at a time. Eating was something I constantly came to new agreements with, in a good way. I understood the vitality that physical care brought to my life experience.
Turning to Silence as My Friend
My mom was an avid positive thinker and she was fairly religious by way of catholicism. Her favorite Saint was Saint Jude. She’d sit on the verandah in the wee hours of the morning before the guests got moving and she’d say her rosary and in times of despair, she’d direct her prayer to Saint Jude. It felt like he’d always pulled through for her and later for me.
My best recollection of my interaction with St Jude was when I lost a book at the payphone (you do remember what those are, right?) across the street from Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale (AIFL). My mom reminded me to pray to St Jude and voila, someone had found it and turned it in to the school.
Spiritually, I’d come to know meditation and prayer as my refuge in times of despair and recently learned to turn to silence as my friend.
I Adore Spirit
While my belief system has been constantly evolving since March 2009, or at least that’s when I became aware of it, I have a general grasp on what resonates with me spiritually. I don’t subscribe to religion but I adore spirit and I lean wholeheartedly into the awareness of the divine, mostly. I understand that I am fueled by an inner being that knows all, sees all and can tell me all I need to know if I only remain open and free of resistance.
It’s that whole #LetGoLetGod movement and it lures me in deliciously when I let my defenses down.
Practice What You Preach
I’ve rigorously studied positive thinking, The Secret, Law Of Attraction and Abraham Hicks philosophy and have enjoyed sharing what I’ve learned with so many people. I’d manifested many things that seemed impossible to others. The Negative Nancy train was not for me and I’d often adopt the words of my mom when things seemed impassable – Team #WatchMe.
One of the people I often share information with is my #SisterGurlCousinFriend (SGCF). She now boasts that she’s way better at this stuff than I am and that she hadn’t even fully listened to even one YouTube link I’d sent her. The Nerve!
She does give me some credit in the area of listening. She’s told me time and time again that I should be a therapist and then scold me for being one of the only people who makes her cry just by listening. Can’t win with some people, I tell ya.
I suppose I’m a fairly good listener. It’s a skill I really tapped into through my friendship with an amazing woman named Florence. Whatever the story was that was being relayed to me, I’d somehow tap into more than just their words and took great pride in making Melanie and one other person I know cry haha. I was good at being patient and super intuitive with what they were trying to say or clarify BUT I was falling short of those things for myself.
My SGCF has caught a whiff of that and started telling me: #PracticeWhatYouPreach.
It’s been hard to hear.
Physical, Spiritual, Mental and Emotional Care
Physically, spiritually and mentally, I feel good about my general knowledge and practices.
Physical Care – Check. Spiritual Care – Check. Mental Care – Check. Emotional Care – Meh.
Emotionally, There Was Much to be Desired
As an artist, I’m told that my emotions serve my creativity – it’s where my writing and art come from. From my perspective, it can be exhausting. I feel too deeply, see to keenly sometimes and everyone’s energy is somewhat tangible. Emotionally, there was much to be desired. Where is the balance?
Dancing and Romancing with the Contrast of My Mind
I understand the Law of Attraction and that it is a “FEELING Universe”. I get that we all vibrate and all you have to do is to become a vibrational match to that which you desire and it will manifest.
However, if my emotions were in the depths of their turbulence, not much could calm my roaring waves. I’d go into bouts of bawling, anxiety and despair. St Jude could have been standing before me waving his prayer and I’d probably just dwell in the drowning of my tears fueled by an avalanche of relentless negative thoughts.
I’d been teaching others about the power of their words, their thoughts and outlook – intuitively knowing what they needed to see. Yet, there I was dancing and romancing with the contrast of my mind.
Nourish Me Sweetly, why hast thou forsaken me?
Keeping Inventory of Thoughts
I understood the importance of entertaining people, places and things that could bring sweet nourishment to me but I missed a key aspect. Nourish Me Sweetly isn’t just about entertaining people, places and things that bring me joy.
It is most importantly about the joy, love and peace I bring to myself and much of this required keeping inventory of my thoughts. I had to learn to reel them in quickly when they start heading downhill.
Ease was a much better place to be. Ease and easy were nicer words to hold on to.
Nourish Me Sweetly – Mind, Body & Soul but Don’t Forget Your Emotions.
It’s about daily meditation, connection to source and making all of it a priority in my day. It wasn’t just about doing things that made me feel good or being around people who made me feel light although those are amazing experiences. Keeping better tabs of my thoughts delivers organic nectar to my emotions and my emotions serve me in ways I never imagined. Even when they feel like they are bad, they are serving me letting me know to shift direction as soon as I’m able to. I understand now that I may not always be able to and in those moments, just try to ride it out. Eventually, it passes. Well, usually unless I have an anxiety attack and pretend St Jude isn’t in front of me waving his prayer.
Nourish Me Sweetly – Mind, Body & Soul but don’t forget your emotions.
I am slowly learning to choose a different thought, step by step til I gain more and more leverage in a better direction. It’s hard sometimes to come to grips with how much I’ve put into studying the law of attraction, having a very clear understanding of how it works, being able to convince others of it, yet finding myself ruled by emotional upheaval.
I had to face the truth of what I was being told – practice what you preach.
“Ok, but you’re not an artist”, I’d want to say to her. “You don’t understand FEELINGS”.
Insert big rolling eye emoticon here.
It’s About Feeling Good. Period.
New light has been shed on what Nourish Me Sweetly means. It’s about feeling good. Period. Sometimes it will be in the form of people, places and things. Many times it will require a shift in my thoughts – creating an easier carpet to ride on so that the magic can be more readily available to me, maybe to you if you can relate to any of this.
It’s been hard to hear but I hear it. My desire is to get better and better at choosing how I want to feel and becoming a distinct vibrational match to it by shifting my thoughts.
Three Amazing Things That Happened After My Mom Passed Away
December, 1999. I had just returned to Belize City. I went with my mom to Guatemala for a routine surgery and she died three days later – totally unexpected. It was a simple biopsy. We would be in and out in no time and I was excited about Christmas shopping with her. I went with her and came back without a mom. One day, in one of my dark moments, I was curled up in a chair in the living room thinking about how lost I felt. I didn’t want to die but I wasn’t sure how to live. The sun rose and set each day and somewhere in the midst of the world continuing to revolve, so did I. And, somewhere in the midst of that and the years that followed, I found a connection to her spirit. I would eventually have moments with her that were unexplainable. There have been many but here are three amazing things happened after my mom passed away that have stood out over the years. They have helped me in dealing with the loss of a mother.
Stop … Like My Heart.
As we were driving around making arrangements for her service, we came off the main bridge in downtown Belize City and turned right into Water Lane, passing the home of my grandfather. People were walking, riding, working and talking on street corners as if life were just carrying on. Baffling to me.
Did they not know my mom had passed away?
What are you doing out here?
Talking and acting as if nothing has happened.
Did you not get the memo?
HELLO! My mom passed away.
Cease and Desist from all activity!
STOP … like my heart did when she died.
It was TOUGH.
It only took 10 whole years for me to be mostly ok with her passing on. Only 10!
Memorial Facebook Covers made in her honor
Poetry in Motion
If you’ve ever watched a Medium episode with Theresa Caputo or Tyler Henry, then you understand how spirit nudges you and guides you often, if you believe that stuff.
Unbeknownst to me, my mom had gone to a funeral many years before and found a poem on the back of the program that apparently made her think of her own mortality.
She so loved this poem that she brought it to her sister (Tia) telling her that whichever one of them passes first, the surviving sister should share this poem with the children of the one who passed on. And, my mom wanted them to agree to do it three months after the passing. Tia agreed and put it away in a bin and carried on with her life, completely forgetting her promise.
One Big Crying Fest
Belize City – March, 2000. Somehow Tia ended up in her closet sifting through boxes and bins and lo and behold she came across the poem, almost exactly three months after my mom passed. You can imagine how awe struck she felt when she stumbled across the poem. I wonder exactly what that moment was like for her knowing she had to have been guided to the bins and boxes that held her forgotten promise.
She called and asked if I could take her to my mom’s grave.
As we sat in the car, the story unfolded and tears flooded my being… a sense of loss, love and comfort all interlaced into one big crying fest. The poem basically speaks of moving on, to cry if you must but not to hold to grief too tightly. It spoke of limiting the time spent at the grave site for only the body is there but the spirit is free. It was what I needed to hear. Not only did it give me comfort but it was a glimmer of hope that her spirit lived on. Always was, is and always will be.
Letting Go and Moving On
She wanted her children to be ok with letting go and moving on. We were to come to her grave if we saw fit but we were free to choose and she hoped we’d choose happiness and joy. It’s as if she was still there in deed. As a mom, that’s how she was – always supportive and always wanting us to be happy.
I held on to that poem for 14 years but lost track of it in a move I made but the impact it had on me will never be forgotten. It was my first of many experiences with her after her transition. The connection I feel to her was still there. Sometimes the signal seemed low but mostly it was there.
6 Months and a Puppy to Smile Again
It took 6 months and a puppy for me to really smile again. Two years to fully focus on a new love, the arrival of my son, and 10 years to forget to write her annual poem. It takes time.
It’s now 18 years later. Some days, like yesterday, it still feels surreal. I was talking about her and how she was and felt fine in the moment. As soon as I got home, the emptiness found its way back to me. Before I knew it, tears were washing down my face in the shower. It was a harsh reminder that the sadness can still grab a hold of me no matter how much time passes. Disorientation often accompanies it.
I’d try to convince myself that she was here.
I did have a mom.
She did exist.
Dealing with the loss of a mother was not easy.
Mostly though, I’m ok. Mostly.
When I sit and recall special connections like these though, I’m reminded that she is never far even though it may feel that way sometimes.
My mom and one of her “sons”, Mark.
My Pity Party and Shannon’s Dream
Fast forward to some years later… I was having a moment. Anger ensued. I felt like my mom died and left me.
Imagine! She left me.
How could she just pass away like that, knowing that I was still here and needed her? I had already had my son. My brother and I were running the business she left behind. I remember thinking that she hadn’t reached me out to me again, like that time with the poem. It’s hard to rationalize this feeling of abandonment even though in my higher consciousness I knew that not to be true. It was a pity party I was having and no one knew but me, or so I thought.
A couple days later I got a call from my friend Shannon. My mom took many of our friends as her own kids, especially if she saw they were good to us. Shannon is the wife of one of her other “sons”. It was so fitting that she’d choose Shannon. She’s a natural story teller and what better way to send her direct message to me.
Hello From The Other Side
Shannon had a dream and a message for me. She said she saw my mom in a car waiting and was so excited to see her. She went up to my mom, ecstatic to see her. “Ms Jean, how are you? Where have you been? What are you doing here?”, she asked. My mom smiled and told her she was fine and all was well but said “Can you give Jeannie a message for me?”. “Sure”, said Shannon. “Tell her I said hello. Make sure you tell her you saw me and that I said hello”.
If you’re not teary eyed now, don’t worry, I’m tearing up for both of us. It was my message that I was not alone. She had not abandoned me. She was close by and was letting me know.
No one knew how I was feeling or that I’d felt like she disappeared into thin air leaving me with only memories that often felt illusory. I cried and told Shannon how I had been feeling. It then made sense to her how adamant my mom was about delivering the message to me.
Hello! (from the other side).
It was important. I did need to hear from her… it was soothing even if only for a moment.
Dreaming of Tuesday
Later, my mom came to me in my own dream.
I had been marketing a property for sale. It wasn’t moving as I expected. I found myself feeling despondent. It felt like business was taking a downward spiral that was out of my control.
In the dream, my mom asked me if I could take some people “up the road”. In my country, this meant up the highway – one of the four that we have. She needed me to take them on Tuesday. I was concerned about the time because I was dating someone at the time and I didn’t want to miss his call. (Yes, in my dream I was concerned about my love life. Pathetic, I know. When I’m in, I’m in, what can I say?) Of course, I didn’t explain the latter to her – only that I wanted to know the time. She was a business lady first. I would not even fathom the thought of arranging her need around a phone call from a man. Even in my dream I knew better than that!
She said she was not sure of the time but just to make sure that I’d be available on Tuesday and I said ok.
Let Light In
When I woke up and got to work, I pulled the curtains, tilted the blinds and felt these words flow from my thoughts “let light in”. I decided I wouldn’t be sad. Instead, I chose to be expectant and to trust. The dream was so sweet and felt so real like I really did talk to her, I had to call my Tia to tell her. Our phone call ended with both of us toying with the idea that the property would sell and it was going to be Tuesday. “Hahaha”, we both chuckled away.
Growing up with our mom, we watched her turn regular visitors into repeat customers who grew to love her and whom she could get to watch her front desk and even answer phones if needed. She would take them to church, local events and they’d come back for more. As much as I often declare that I didn’t have the “people person” gift like my mom did, it became clear over the years that I had at least learned it. Some of our repeat guests included missionaries. One of them that has stood out to me since was named Mr Tibbs. That morning, I saw him outside waiting in his truck. We had a quick chat and he offered a prayer. He prayed that God send the man that needs that land… specifically saying those words. It felt good and far reaching. It brought a further sense of well being to me.
I carried on with my week and I left despair behind.
Tell No One of This
That weekend, I decided to get out of the city a bit and go inland to one of my favorite places tucked in the village of Burrell Boom. As I sat around relaxing, I got a phone call that I needed to come to the city for a quick meeting about the property. I was informed that some people had gone through the property and were prepared to make an offer close to my asking price. It was serious. If you’re in the business of real estate, you know words are just words. Period.
It gave me some comfort but I didn’t want to get ahead of myself. For now, it was just words. So until it was a closed sale, I’d tell no one of this.
Tuesday morning just before midday, the buyer arrived and the property sold.
Tuesday. It was the day my mom told me to be available.
I was beside myself. I called my Tia to tell her and it was the best hahahaha we had, besides the other day when she told me she thought BFF meant Best F*cking Friend. THAT WAS HILARIOUS.
My mom had delivered a message directly to me this time. She’d even given me a day to be available and the property was “up the road”.
These are only a few instances I’ve had with my mom. Some are too personal to share but this gives an insight into the connection I’ve had with her since her passing. Losing her was one of the hardest things I’ve had to endure. In recent years, I became very interested in NDE (near death experiences), spirit, intuition, third eye opening and the like.
My Personal Experience that Rings True for Me
My whole belief system took a shift in 2009 and has been ever evolving since. Some will chalk these things up to coincidences or get into debates about it. I opt out of those. Lover, not a fighter… remember?
Or is this my first blog post you’re reading?
These are just my personal experiences that ring true for me.
Two weeks ago, two friends of mine lost their mom. I wanted so badly to share this to let them know of my experiences which I humbly share, knowing that it’s not for everyone. Instead of writing, I found myself with “writer’s block”. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to bring up any feelings of missing my mom, especially when I know I sometimes still have to convince myself she was even here.
Dealing with the Loss of a Mother Was Not Easy
My mom’s passing felt hard and dark. It was confusing and lonely and terrifying. I even moved into my brother’s room for some months. Eventually I adjusted and these experiences remind me that she’s available, like the dream I had where she messaged me on Whatsapp. It was her way of telling me she was that easy to reach – as if she were a contact on Whatsapp.
It finally got manageable … I’d dare to say easy.
The sun continued to rise and set for 18 more years. People continued about their lives even though I wanted everything to stop. It only stopped for me and even then, only momentarily. Now, I manage well enough, with a few random break downs here and there.
Dealing with the loss of a mother was not easy.
Mostly though, I’m ok. Mostly.
Of all the amazing things that have happened since my mom’s transition from her physical form, there are none so great as having had her as a mom for 26 full years.
She was AMAZING. She really was.
Even If You Had a Twin I Would Still Choose You
I would not have it any other way even if someone said I could have a different mom for 50 years. I’d take one day only with her as my mom over any other amount of days with any other woman to call my mom. In the words of Drake in his duet with Rhianna, “Even if you had a twin, I would still choose you”.