For Heather

I have been friends with Heather since I was 15 years old (actually you could argue 11 years old, since we were sorta friends in 6th grade).  She’s one of the people I admire and cherish most.  I’m pretty sure that somewhere along the way, Heather attached an invisible cord to me and when I get too far away she gives a tug.  No matter how different our paths have looked throughout the years, her loving presence has remained constant.

When I think of Heather, I can’t think of a person in my life who is more genuinely considerate.  She always has the right words to say to lift you up.  She has always encouraged me in all my endeavors, especially my writing (going all the way back to high school and my dorky poetry).  Meanwhile, she’s one of the most talented people (and writers) I know, who manages to let her talent speak for itself.  Heather will never boast about being good at any particular thing, yet she is actually good at everything (ok, well except singing and dancing and she’ll tell you that).

Yesterday Heather called me to inform me that she accidentally missed me on her Christmas card list, so I will not be getting one from her this year.  She apologized and explained the mix-up.  It was that act of thoughtfulness (seeing as she could have just ignored her mistake and hope I didn’t catch it) that reminded me of the card I found in a drawer recently.  It is not dated, but I’m guessing it was written in the months after Mark and I got married and moved away.  Here is an excerpt so you can see for yourself how sweet my friend is.

“I pray every night for each of you (you probably don’t believe that, but its true) and when I pray for you I ask for you to be happy with yourself-I also pray to have you with us more often because I’m selfish and I miss you.  Please don’t lose touch with us-and know that I’m glad for you if you are happy-I love you Leslee-you are a beautiful person inside and out and I truly admire you.  I know you will be a success-please don’t forget about us peons. Love Heather”

Thank you, Heather, for your love, friendship, and support.

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What Worked

I took the time to sit and meditate for 20 minutes this morning.  What came to me in meditation was a reminder of what worked for me in the past.  The other day I wrote that post titled “Healing” and mentioned how in 2008 I was more intuitive then I am now.  I wasn’t really asking why that was.  At some level I know and just haven’t said it out loud.  What came to me in meditation inspired me to put the answer out here.

When I first started down this path I did two very important things.  I read The Law of Attraction: The Teachings of Abraham by Jerry and Esther Hicks and I took a meditation course.  It was around that time that I was manifesting a level of success and peace I’d never seen before in my life.  In that time I decided to write a novel after 12 years of not writing at all.  I’m sure the idea sounded crazy to everyone around me.  Most people didn’t even know I could write.  But I set the intention with absolutely no plans of failing.  I also just wanted to create a better me and a more joyful life.

I started meditating 2 times a day for 20 minutes at each sitting.  The girls were very young at that time.  Looking back on it I don’t see how I even thought it was possible, but I did and it became possible.  I was disciplined and it worked.  It changed me forever.  I also started visualizing my day on paper every morning and reading a daily devotional.  I would write out the way my day would look, filling the page with affirmations about peace, love, and joy.

When the idea for my first novel came to me I made a writing schedule.  I’d write three pages of my novel every evening NO MATTER WHAT.  I took my lap top and wrote when we were on vacation.  I wrote when a friend came to visit from out of town.  I stayed up late and wrote if necessary, but I always finished those three pages and often wrote more.  Before each writing session I’d write my intentions and affirmations about what would be achieved in the session then I’d say a prayer.

I finished that book in 3 and a half months.  It ended up being 100,000 words which is almost twice as long as the second novel that I spent over a year writing.  That first one is raw and amateurish, but it is also intense and powerful. I was truly tuned into God when I wrote that book.  Often times I’d go back and read in disbelief that the words had come from me.

I continued some of those practices long after the book was finished.  It was at least 2 years before I missed a meditation session and I planned my day on paper for about a year.

At some point though, I got overconfident or lazy.  I thought I’d reached a point where I didn’t need to “plan” my day or meditate as often.  I allowed myself to get busy or slack.  So I made those quantum leaps of progress a few years ago and am no where near where I thought I’d be by 2011.  Without a doubt I took 3 steps forward and 2 steps back.  I can never go back completely, but right now I’m close enough.

So I’m examining what worked for me before and I am setting the intention to embrace something that works for me again.  I do so want to be an instrument for the Divine and not a slave to my Ego.  To take an idea from Wayne Dyer…I’ve had enough of this Edging God Out.

Do-Over Please?

It is Monday at 3 pm as I sit to write this.  I have nothing inspiring on my brain right now because today has been an epic failure.  My plan was to have an early meet-up with Mildred and then come home so Mark could head to work.  I was going to do some cleaning and take the girls out to find another gift or two for Mark.  Later this afternoon we would have gone to Bella’s music lesson and then we were hosting a little girl from Bella’s class for a sleepover.  It was going to be our first sleepover…very exciting stuff.  I was going to make them cheese quesadillas for dinner and eggnog milkshakes for dessert.  I was even planning to let them stay up as late as they wanted.

Instead, at 10:30 last night we heard the dreaded sound of fitful crying coming from Callee’s room.  Sure enough she’d gotten sick all over her bed.  I got her and the bed cleaned up, while praying it was a one-time incident.  It wasn’t.  I ended up spending the night with her in the twin size bed and running her to the bathroom 8 more times throughout the night.  She got sick one more time this morning and ran a fever for a few hours.  Once I was sure she’d keep it down, I gave her ibuprofen.  She is currently playing and acting normal for the first time since yesterday afternoon.

Needless to say, I canceled the meet-up with Mildred, shopping plans, and the sleepover.  And after all of that was done, Mark went out to his car to discover the battery was dead.  With help from the jumper cables, we got it started and he was off to work.  For the rest of the day I’ve done little more than stay on the edge of my seat with a trashcan nearby just in case the bug reared it’s ugly head again.  The upside is, I had an excuse to blow off cleaning the house…

Today is one of those days where I truly understand the meaning of the saying “Life is what happens when you’re busy making plans.”  Today Life definitely showed me who was boss.  For some reason we all needed to be home and resting today.  Let’s just hope I can get all the shopping and cleaning done considering I just lost a day…

 

I’m Still Here (Movie Review)

This weekend we rented I’m Still Here and I was super excited to see it.  In case you have no idea what movie I’m referring to (which I didn’t either until Mark reminded me), it’s the documentary or mockumentary about Joaquin Phoenix and his attempt to become a Hip Hop star.

Basically, the movie begins as Joaquin suddenly, in nervous breakdown fashion, decides to retire from acting.  From that point he goes after a dream of his to become a musician.  He travels between New York, LA, Miami, and Las Vegas all in an effort to meet up with P Diddy.  Somewhere along the way he mistakenly believes that Mr. Combs has agreed to actually produce a record.  When they finally meet face to face, he gets little more than a hug and a few encouraging words.

When I first heard about the movie, it really sounded to me like it was going to be at least interesting, if not hilarious.  If it was a mockumentary, I thought for sure they’d do it up and have me falling out of my seat.  And if it was a documentary, I thought I’d see the real side of an actor I love and be even more impressed.

Unfortunately it was neither.  In a way it was just plain weird and barely watchable.  As far as his talent in the Rap genre, he was not good, but he wasn’t absolutely terrible either.  So if it was supposed to be funny or humiliating, it wasn’t really.  On the flip side if the movie wasn’t a hoax, well it was a really bad career move.  I don’t see how anyone in their prime, with academy award nominations under their belt, would want to show their darkest side.  If I were to judge only by what I saw in this film, I’d say he committed career suicide.

Basically this movie leaves you thinking Joaquin Phoenix is very, very, very strange.  There is nothing inspiring about his quest.  At moments he barely makes an effort in this big dream of his.  If he wasn’t really an aspiring rapper and was just trying to be the next Borat, he failed miserably.  The awkward that was the foundation of this movie was not an entertaining kind of awkward at all.  I felt no emotion at all for the characters…not even embarrassment.

In fact, come to think of it, since truth is what touches people, maybe this movie was an elaborate hoax…because it didn’t touch me at all.  Well, actually, I can’t say that because it did touch me enough to no longer call myself a fan.

Oneness 2

I am still reading the book Oneness.  Here is another quote from it.  I think it is appropriate this week before Christmas when even the “true meaning” of the holiday may be hard for some to accept.

“Your obligation is not to the so-called “truth,” that may have been handed down through generations of misguided seekers.  Your obligation is to the truth that has been unearthed within the depths of your own heart-and to that alone.

For each of you, there is only one truth: your truth.  It is contradictory to the very concept of spiritual devotion to subscribe to a school of thought forced upon you by the might of the masses, when such concepts violate what you know to be your own inner truth.”

Cookie Crazy

In our house we are pretty big on not being wasteful.  This idea, of course, carries over to food.  If you ask for a snack or a meal, only get as much as you can finish.  We don’t do the “clean plate club” per se, we just start the girls with small servings and let them have more if they’d like.

Bella really takes our “rules” and way of life seriously.  For her, eating all the food you ask for equates to doing the right thing.  This works great in our house.  I rarely toss food in the trashcan as I’m sure so many other parents do.  But it doesn’t work so well when she goes out into the world, away from us.  Yesterday is a perfect example of that.

Her first grade class had their holiday party yesterday.  One of the activities was decorating cookies.  Every child got 5 huge cookies to decorate.  I got there late and only saw two cookies on Bella’s plate.  She ate one of them and with exhaustion in her voice asked me to eat the second.  It was only then that I realized she had also had 5 HUGE cookies and she’d eaten 4 of them.

Yes, she had applied the rule of not being wasteful to her class party that included excessive amounts of junk food.  After the party her class went to lunch and of course Bella ate everything I packed for her.

For a moment I was worried that she was a glutton, until it occurred to me that she was actually only doing what she thought was right and following Mom and Dad’s rules.  I guess it’s time to add an addendum to our rule…

Healing

There is a theme pushing it’s way to the surface in my life.  I get the feeling that 2011 is going to be the year of healing for me.  I am currently at a spiritual and physical plateau.  I’ve been sort of stuck in one spot feeling as if nothing is moving.  But in the Reality behind this reality a lot is going on.

In general, I am healthy.  I eat well, exercise, meditate, and feed myself spiritually.  With all of this in mind I ask myself and God often why I haven’t seen any huge results.  Why am I still carrying around this extra 15 pounds when I gave up meat and eased up on junk food years ago?  Why haven’t I made any headway on getting a novel published, which was an intention I set so long ago?  Why does it seem I was more intuitive in 2008 than I have been in 2010?  Why did I make huge quantum leaps in the beginning of my journey only to stall out three years into my trek?

The reason I think is that I’m just not ready yet.  Obviously there is stuff within me that needs to be healed.  I don’t really know what’s there.  I don’t even know if it’s stuff from this life or some past one.  I often joke about my bad memory, but seriously I remember so little from my younger years.

This year I plan to do the A Course In Miracles workbook.  It is a year-long daily commitment.  I also want to get started on Marrianne’s 21 spiritual lessons that I mentioned in yesterday’s post.  Today I had brunch with a friend, Rev. Julie Keene, and she shared two books with me, both revolving around healing techniques.  This stuff is not coming into my awareness for no reason.  There is obviously some healing to be done.

I wonder if I’ve been sitting on this plateau, gathering the strength and desire to dive into the transformative waters of Spirit.