Monday, May 12, 2014

Welcoming Myself to This New Day

"Only a few things in life really matter, and those few things that do matter, matter immeasurably." Kent Kilbourne

In the past two weeks I've had three mini vacations away from home and at restaurants and theaters, at shops and hotels or private homes, I've been struck by the importance of how feeling welcome adds to my enjoyment of a show or a meal or conversation or even my perception of the hotel room before I get to it. This morning I'm thinking about the importance of welcoming myself to this day and how that can make the difference between me feeling energized and enthusiastic or slogging onward, because this morning I didn't welcome myself as an honored guest and then move on. First thing today I peeked into the Life Book 2014 lesson, felt overwhelmed, and right now I am trying hard to resist a downward spiral of not knowing what to do with myself of not wanting to take out art materials and start this new project.

So I start over. I do what I usually do each morning. I have a glass of hot lemon water and sit down to the computer for a five minute writing to learn what's on my mind in the most gentle way.  This  routine is important to me. I wake up, still more a part of my night than my day. This daily routine welcomes me gently, gives me time to enter quietly, time to smile at myself, time to say "hello dearie, I'm glad to see you again, how are you feeling, I'm glad you're here. Now please take a deep breath and just sit here for a few minutes." It makes such a difference to me. In those few minutes of restarting my day, of honoring myself with a decent welcome, of doing something immeasurably important to me, I've decided to delay the art project until later today or tomorrow and do something else I've been wanting to do: create very small works. And my world won't end if I don't do this week's class another day. Or not at all.

Last Monday after my water and writing and sitting and listening routine, I decided not to go to a yoga class but rather do it later in the week. I felt so liberated. Last Monday and Tuesday I was in a flow of activity and productivity I know I wouldn't have been if I hadn't taken a few minutes to allow my heart and body figure out what I needed to do rather than my head. I trust this part of me to know the way when my head is busy busting barriers and making too much noise. I've been actively trying not to try. You can click onto this link and read more about this here.  This link brings you to the brilliant Always interesting and thought provoking. It will seriously sidetrack you if you start your day here.

Baruch ata adonai....I am so grateful to be in this stage of my life when I have the time and presence to listen to myself, to be gentle with myself, to honor and welcome myself to this new day. Amen

Monday, May 5, 2014

The Good Girl/Good Woman Continuum

There was a little girl who had a little curl right in the middle of her forehead.
And when she was good, she was very very good,
and when she was bad, she was horrid. Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

I love Monday morning. It's the day I get do write my blog for my heart and start a new Life Book 2014 project for my creative part which I can hardly wait to start. Monday is the day I set aside for myself. Just minutes ago I did a brief meditation and my good girl was in a big snit about needing to go to yoga and she was trying to shame the rest of me. You should go, she said, you've got to go, she added, how can you do the rest of what you want to do if you fail to take care of your body? She has no middle ground. She can make life so unpleasant for me. I'm not sure it's a place of good intentions she's speaking from. She reminds me of a teeny tiny mother, a little girl who doesn't know how to mother at all, but who has all the words and the idea that she knows perfectly well what's right and wrong and what I should should should do. She can be one bitchy piece of certitude.

While I was doing the meditation, my little lady above, the one with the little curl right in the middle of her forehead, tapped me on my shoulder and whispered in my ear. Though she is very strong in her sense of joy and delight in life, she's a bit afraid of the good girl. I never doubt her intentions for me are right on. Not like that good girl who is so prissy. She told me I can really go to yoga on  Wednesday, which I always do, and on Thursday which I never do. And, she said, she's sure I would love one of the Thursday morning classes. So I sit here in my bathrobe smiling. I may stay in my bathrobe for a good long time this morning, right up until the time I get into my paint clothes. I may not even wash my face or brush my teeth. I am feeling so good. My good girl is in retreat.

I've been drawing little ladies for a long time. I've always thought they represent the best part of me. They are joyful, fun and undemanding. They just have a good time. After watching the delight of my four year old granddaughter as she celebrated her birthday this weekend, I think my little ladies are four at heart.

So here I am. Not going to yoga. Getting to do art. And write. And read the newspaper. And feel very very good about myself. I'm not punishing myself by making myself do something I don't want to do this morning and I've found a way to take care of my body on Thursday. That little lady is a very good woman!

I've been thinking and talking a lot the past week about the good girl/good woman continuum. The good girl is drilled into us from the earliest times. With nursery rhymes even. I remember there was a little girl who had a little curl being said to me when I was very young and knowing with all of my little girl heart they only said it when I was being a bad girl in their eyes. The little girl doesn't have it all wrong, though her delivery stinks. Every good woman knows the good girl still lives in side her, only now, she lets her know she can't be in charge unless she's inclined to be a fun loving joyful even devilish little lady.

Baruch ata adonai.... this morning, I am a good woman, a woman who knows what's really important for me this day, a woman who helps me make a way to do what I need to do to feel good and strong and able to lift my heart and to feel and hear the goodness of this day becoming known to me.  Amen