Saying Goodbye

As I sit here writing this post, I find myself holding my breath; afraid to breathe because the pain is so intense and profound. This has been a difficult year; a year of loss and change. Change, I tell myself, is often a good thing. While it may be painful or uncomfortable initially, with time its effects are usually for the better. And while you can look at loss as a part of change, here I am talking about the deep, painful loss of someone you love and is an everyday part of your life. If you have never lost anyone in your life like this, please know that someday you will.

Yesterday, August 11, 2017, we lost such a person. Bob and AnnMarie have been a part of our life for more than 30 years; my husband’s best friend, buddy, confidante and compadre. A man we loved, honored and respected in every possible way. A man we turned to for advice, counsel, fun and laughter. A man of the highest integrity, principle, and compassion. There aren’t enough words to describe his character and the long reaching effect and influence he has had on so many people. To know Bob, was to love him.

But the intense pain isn’t just about the passing of this strong, wonderful man; its about the hole that is left in so many lives…his wife, daughter, grandchildren, family, and the hundreds of people who called him friend. I look at our own lives, my husband and me, and see this large, gapping hole that bleeds so profusely I can’t even imagine how it will ever heal. It is true what they say about death being painful for the ones left behind; for this is a pain I wish for no one.

It is during these moments you realize the frailty of life and how fortunate you are or have been. You look at your loved ones and pray you never devastate them in this same way…knowing full well it will happen one day. I look at Bob’s family and what lies ahead of them and pray I never have to face that…recognizing I’ve been fortunate, but it could just as easily be me.

Since January, 2016, as a family we have suffered a great deal of personal loss. 5 weeks ago we lost our favorite and treasured Uncle, another humble and honorable man, and of course our wounds are still quite raw and open from that. But losing Bob has taken us over the top. How does one recover?

New Moon of July, 2017

The fullness of this month’s New Moon appears early Sunday morning, July 23rd. As we continue to move through this month of spiritual movement, embrace the absence of Grandmother Moon’s light and instead, reveal to yourself and all who see you the light that glows within your heart and soul; your essence. Each of us enters this world, this life, with our own flame of life and light; the flame and light of love. We often witness it in the faces of babies and young children; sometimes called the look of innocence. We continue to carry that flame all through our lives; but unfortunately, all too often we forget it is there, and instead look outside ourselves for that ever elusive light of love.

Use this time of darkness to grow and glow your own light of love. Allow it to light your way. If you find yourself feeling lost, out of balance, confused or depressed, take a moment to quiet your mind. Then, reaching deep within you, feel the warmth, comfort and strength of your own brilliant light. Allow the light to expand outward, lighting everything in your presence, including you.

If you want to continue your spiritual movement now and throughout the remainder of this year, grow your own flame and light of love. It will help burn away those hours of darkness. The basis of your future is all up to you.

June’s Full Strawberry Moon

Back in the day, when the Original People lived in tepees, longhouses, pueblos or other types of homes and dwellings, this was the full moon of ripened berries (e.g., strawberries, blueberries, and blackberries), green leaves and the beginning of hot, sunny days. It is a time of growing abundance; of food sources, warm weather, freedoms to hunt and roam the lands, of available water to drink, bathe, cook and use. And, it comes during the month of the Summer Solstice.

The 3-days of June’s Full Moon runs from Thursday, June 8th – Saturday, June 10th, and is about growth and the movement forward. Use the fullness of this time to see your full potential, and to prepare to set a coarse to reach that goal.

The Full Moon is about completion and reaching the full expression or goal. As you begin to prepare your own coarse, remember these simple truths…

  • There will always be things that can hold you back, if you let them;
  • There will always be people, places, things, and events that can appear negative, if you choose to see them in that light;
  • There will always be things that seem heavy and burdensome, if you decide to put more time, energy and weight into them than they need or deserve;
  • There will always be things that limit you and your ability to experience life, if you want to be confined or inferior;
  • There will always be things that can scare or frighten you, if you choose to live in fear; and,
  • There will always be excuses available, if you simply don’t want to take responsibility for your own health, happiness, peace and contentment.

Make this the Full Moon that moved you to begin the process of reshaping the person and life you want to be and live.

 

June’s Revelations

June is a month for revelations. Dictionary.com defines revelations this way … something revealed or disclosed, especially a striking disclosure, as of something not before realized. The Universe has a way of presenting to each of us exactly what we need to know or experience so we can continue on our journey of self-awareness, self-discovery and conscious living. These revelations come when we are open to truth and honesty within ourselves. When we are willing to listen and hear a different voice, perhaps a ‘voice of reason’, speak words with a different message, or provide a different ‘slant’ or view that reaches something within you. It is a moment of discovery; of a revelation.

Too often we stay stuck in our position, opinion or idea of how things or people ought to be. Throughout our lives we have responded and reacted to people and events based on those deeply coded positions, opinions and ideas. We often have beliefs that have been with us throughout our lives, and maybe have served us well. But what about those times when they leave you feeling less than honest? Less comfortable? Miserable? Embarrassed? Maybe even a little ashamed?

How many times in the last year have you questioned yourself about how you were feeling after you reacted to a stressful, disappointing or personally intimidating event? How many times, in the past year, have you found yourself in a joyful, lighthearted, upbeat frame of mind, only to be brought down by some event or some other person’s actions, deeds or words? And, how did you respond? Did you carry the attitude with you for awhile?

Negative energy, and negativity, isn’t as easy to shed as it used to be, back when you were a kid and life seemed a little easier. As you move through the month of June, you may find yourself feeling bombarded by negativity.  As though a continuous storm of chaos, hatred, selfishness and narcissism has somehow descended upon our beautiful planet Earth. No matter where you turn, it is there…feeding on the reactions of pent up fear, anxiety, frustration and hostility here and around the globe. This negative energy is so prevalent, it sometimes goes unnoticed…as though it has become the norm. So, maintaining a positive state of mind and attitude can be difficult at best.

Through this month of June, take the time to reveal to yourself and to others the opposite energy. The energy of positivity. June is a time of celebrations, e.g., graduations, weddings, Father’s Day, warm weather, picnics and parties. Can you carry that same uplifting, celebratory energy with you? Look around you.

  • What is it that moves you into that place of negativity?
  • When experiencing your own sense of negativity, where does it come from?
  • Is it coming from old beliefs or does it feel personal?
  • Who among your friends, family and co-workers tends to lift your mood?
  • Who among them tends to darken your mood?
  • What is the quickest way for you to pull yourself out of a negative mood or situation?
  • What can you do this month that will move you towards your own personal revelations?
  • What part of conscious living do you practice?
    • Can you listen without judgment?
    • Are you willing to hear an opposite viewpoint?
    • Can you accept without prejudice another’s opinion?
    • Can you drop the idea that you are, of course, right?
    • Can you honestly, openly and truthfully question your own ideas and beliefs, while looking at what others hold as their own ideas and beliefs?

A perfect summer day is when the sun is shining, the breeze is blowing, the birds are singing, and the lawn mower is broken. ~James Dent

The New Moon of May

As we wind down the month of May and head into Memorial Weekend here in the USA, the light in our nighttime sky begins to disappear for a few short evenings, and prepares a space for each of us to go deep within our own personal darkness.

Darkness should not be considered a bad or scary place; even though movies seem to always paint it as a place where demons, monsters and horrors hide. Instead, think of the darkness as a thick, warm blanket of empty possibilities and potentiality. As a blanket, every aspect of you is wrapped in its boundless ethereal space, providing an unlimited expanse for you to be present, create and/or release that which you no longer choose to endure or entertain.

Wednesday, May 24th, is the start of May’s 3-days of the New Moon.

  • Take some time to embrace the quiet power of this New Moon.
  • Give yourself permission to view the darkness inside and outside your sphere of existence.
  • Feel the differences between the 2, then allow them to merge in and around you.
  • Surrender your thoughts while you open your heart.
  • Relax your muscles as you quiet your breath.
  • Now, slowly and patiently, allow all of the Universal Healing Energies to move in, around and through you; synchronizing your Body, Mind, Spirit and Soul with the natural flow and rhythm of Mother Earth, Grandmother Moon and the heavenly celestrial bodies.

The Sun watches all I do, but the Moon knows all of my secrets….J.M. Wonderland

April’s Passion

What are you passionate about? Do you have a passion? Is it for a cause? A sport? Politics? A religious belief? Family? Friends? Work? What is it that gets your heart pumping and feeds you with adrenaline? Has it changed over the years or remained the same? Does it have the same intensity today as it did 3 years ago?

Experience tells me that passion can rise and fall, like the ebb and flow and tides of great waters. Each time the tide rolls in to meet the shore, it brings with it a different intensity. With strong winds behind it, it may come crashing loudly onto the shoreline. When accompanied by more gentle breezes, the surf appears more tranquil in nature, softly reaching the shore and slowly, methodically ebbing back into its waters. In many ways, April will reflect that same ebb and flow.

To awaken Mother Earth to her fullest, the waters (her blood) must be able to flow freely in and around her. The coldness held in the roots of the trees and other vegetation must be warmed and nurtured by the sun, and nourished by her waters. April is a month of passion; the passion of washing away the slumber of the old season and preparing the way for the awakening, growth and freshness of the new season. Each season comes to us fresh and new, but it is that time of transitioning where you can begin to witness and experience Mother Nature’s intense passion; e.g., in her storms, tornadoes, hurricanes, earthquakes, mudslides, and flooding.

During this month of April, you may find an awakening happening deep within you; an arising passion for your own Self and well-being. With Venus in retrograde, you may find your subconscious randomly dragging up memories of relationships and emotional events from your past. Be aware of them. Like the waters of Mother Earth, allow them to ebb and flow within you, waking up and washing away any old, negative, destructive emotions, and letting in (or replacing it with) healthy, new, nurturing emotions and sensations. Give yourself permission to move beyond the hurts and wounds of the past and instead, arouse the passion within you to stand in the place of health, healing and happiness.

Throughout the month of April, continue to explore your passion. Do you live each day with passion? Even if you are stuck in a boring, dead-end job, go to work committed to doing your best. If you are engaged and present in everything that you do, and if you do your work with a sense of pride, regardless of what it is, you will lift yourself up out of the doldrums and find pleasure in the present.

Take a moment to examine those things you are passionate about.

  • Make a list.
  • Has your priorities or interests changed over the years?
  • What passions are you engaged in now?
  • What were you engaged in, in the past?
  • Is your name on the list?
  • Are you passionate about your health?
    • Happiness?
    • Relationships?
    • Beliefs?
    • Practices?
    • Life?
  • What will you do to engage more deeply?

The Vernal Equinox, 2017

Tomorrow marks the beginning of spring here in the northern hemisphere. It is a time when the northern hemisphere starts to tilt towards the sun, creating longer days and shorter nights. Hence, Vernal means new or fresh, and Equinox literally means equal night. Spring will officially arrive at 6:29am in the Eastern Time Zone! And to that I say, HURRAY! 

People have celebrated the Vernal Equinox throughout the centuries. The Egyptians built a huge sphinx that would face the rising sun each year on this equinox. And, Christians use this day to figure out when Easter will occur. Easter always falls on the first Sunday after the first Full Moon following the Vernal Equinox.

This is a time when people start feeling the need to clean out drawers and closets, sweep out the dust and cobwebs, and throw open the windows and doors to blow out the stale, old season of winter, and usher in the fresh, new season of spring. Fields get plowed, gardens get planted, and people begin embracing the smells and sounds of Mother Nature. It is an exhilarating time.

Make a point to celebrate the changing of seasons. Head outside before you start your busy day or settle in for the evening. Give thanks for the dawning of this new season. This doesn’t have to take too long; you can do this in 5 minutes…showing a little gratitude for the blessings of your life and the newness of the spring season.

  • Make a little fire. Fire is symbolic of change; the transmuting of one thing to another. This fire doesn’t have to be large. I make mine in an abalone shell using a little sage, cedar and sweet grass.
  • Make a little offering. You may want to write a few words about what you are grateful for or what you want to release to the darkness of winter. I use tobacco; placing a bit of tobacco in my left hand, I speak my words of gratitude and humility. I use my left hand because it is closest to my heart, so all my thoughts and intentions are infused into the tobacco.
  • Give your offering to the fire. When ready, place your offering in the fire and watch your thoughts, words and emotions rise up to the Creator where they will be heard, understood and acted upon. At this point, I place my tobacco into the fire, or smoldering embers, and watch the smoke rise to the heavens.
  • Let the fire burn out completely. Try not to create a fire so large that you have to douse it with water to put it out. Instead, let the fire burn out completely before you end your ceremony.
  • End your ceremony. Return the ashes from your fire to Mother Earth. Give thanks to Mother Earth for making your ceremony possible. I give thanks for the sage, cedar, sweet grass, tobacco, fire and shell, and for all she has given me. I thank her for awakening to this new season of freshness and growth, and for the time of slumber.

Make this a time of sweet renewal. If winter was difficult, let it go; it is behind you. Turn to the east and welcome spring.