Sunday, March 27, 2016

The Passion, Palm Sunday, Spring Equinox and Easter/Resurrection

As the days of Holy week arrived, I began by revisiting my church and community for over 20 years, singing with my group for one of the most moving masses for me - Palm Sunday - which depicts the sequence of events leading up to Jesus' death.  It has always been a meaningful week for me, but as these past few years have unfolded, the meaning has grown in depth and breadth - encompassing less religiosity and more communal thinking about what this time of year symbolizes and what "christ energy" means for me.

It's almost like being in a sci-fi movie.  During the Palm Sunday mass, I am brought back to being with Jesus, feeling his emotional pain, feeling misunderstood, teased and bullied, chastised for speaking out about ways of being that did not make sense to those "in control".  We then move into other energies of the week - the vernal equinox and a full moon - powerful influences on emotions and behaviors.  Spring is a time of re-birth, coming into the light.  It is so interesting to look at other cultures and spiritual traditions and basically all are echoing the same thing - bringing light into the world.  I talk about the rising and falling of emotions with my clients during this week - some more challenged than others with this increasing energy of Spring.

In the christian tradition, Easter marks the time when the resurrection of Jesus occurred and we all have this opportunity to be re-born, to bring forth our fruits, to awaken from the dark of winter.  There is a shift that many of us experience, feeling a bit more aware of the increasing energy around us, yet maybe not quite there in our own energy.  For me, it takes a few weeks to adjust even to the one hour time change!  I also had a migraine for much of the week - not uncommon with these subtle shifts and the insomnia that accompanies the full moon.  I have become so aware of these energetic influences and how they impact my body, and I continue to search for ways to soften the bodily experience of these shifts.

I spent a wonderful day with my family, sharing in prayer, a wonderful meal and to start the day, Lindsay and I went to yoga - a weekly treat to listen to Jaishree and Kalanadi, as they sing for sivasana.  Jaishree so nicely acknowledged all the traditions that celebrate this time of year and the Easter tradition of resurrection.  It felt complete for me - unifying all.  After all, that is what life is about!

Happy Easter and Namaste,

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Spring Cleaning - Oh The Memories

As the Spring approaches, I begin to look at my schedule to block a few days for washing walls, cleaning curtains and oiling the furniture.  It's a real love-hate feeling - thinking of the hours spent - but oh, the outcome is so rewarding - a clean and orderly environment, my living space, a sacred space!

When I heard that Ashley would be coming home 1-2 weeks earlier, I decided to get right on this and to be prepared for this exciting time.  Somehow, the angst felt less this year.  I marked the days, went to the store to pick up the "Olde English" lemon oil, that Mom always used and just got on it.  Starting in Ashley's room, I cranked up Jason Mraz tunes - a musician that she turned me onto.  As I oiled her bookcase, I thought about Babasia, her grandmmother who was so special in our lives.  I then moved onto the little black rocking chair that my Grampy gave to me when I was little.  I used to sit on his lap and he called me "the winner".  I loved my Grampy - he was so kind and gentle.  The last piece of furniture was Mom's sewing machine that she gave to Ashley.  Mom was an amazing seamstress, making many of my clothes and coats, my wedding dress and the girls's christening gowns.  Ashley took up the hobby and often made her own first and last day of school dresses, with a more recent hobby of making rice filled turtles that are used a warm packs for sore muscles.  I left that room being brought back to happy memories and felt a strong connection with Mom.  After all, I assisted her with this task as a young girl and adolescent.

The day passed rather quickly and I enjoyed the process - not something I could have said as much in the past.  Later on as I talked with Lindsay on the phone, she remarked how she had already started her own Spring cleaning.  What a tradition, now passed onto my own girls.

Now is the time to enjoy the longer days, the waking energy and rebirth that Spring brings.
Plant your own seeds of tradition and of rebirth.

With renewed spirit,

Monday, March 14, 2016

Of Like Minds and Varied Gifts

What an array of talents sat with me on a beautiful Sunday afternoon, sharing in a like-minded concept with such delectable assortment of ideas and supportive advice.  We sat and had food from my Feel Great Look Great series - part of what will be served in this beautiful space.  For years, I have entertained the idea of providing retreat services where people can gather, stay, learn and be immersed into a world of total healing.  The thought began while I was still in undergraduate school studying nutrition and psychology, while also having to learn the A to Z's of food preparation, safety and ambiance.  I dreamed of being in Marblehead offering these services.

Now fast forward 35 plus years and here I sat with with friends and colleagues, both old and new, talking about how to manifest this dream into a reality.  It was an engaging and interesting conversation because what brought us together was the desire to offer healing, rest and beauty in this beautiful ocean town, yet each has expertise in different disciplines - finance, non-profit startup, mental health, marketing, coaching, music - all areas that need addressing in order to create a viable business.

As the ideas rolled, my brain swelled with not only information, but a twinge of "Oh my God" what, how, can I - and quickly one of my dear friends said, "We're gonna process this after the meeting".  I felt a sigh of relief and yet also acknowledged that my degree of what, how and can I, has dampened so much over these past few years because I "work on my stuff"  all the time.  Not only do I preach seeing oneself as healthy, healed, whole, doing what one loves and being where one wants to be, BUT, I remind myself of this daily and often multiple times daily when the old tapes of not being good enough, not knowing enough, not deserving to have, come into my conscious awareness.

These are such common themes and they erode the greatness that we all possess, keeping us humans powerless instead of powerful.  However, there was great power in my living room - a common focus, all contributing - and for this, I am grateful.

To be continued . . .

Sunday, March 6, 2016


What thoughts come to mind when you hear the word softening?  Weakness?  Giving in?   Or rather being open to?  Less rigid?

For me, this word kept coming into my conscious awareness while in yoga, while talking with my Dad, while listening to my clients.  In yoga class, I often start out very tight and in a good deal of bodily discomfort.  I usually try to arrive 10-15 minutes early in order to lay on the blocks in order to open the chest and diaphragm area.  This begins my practice in a receptive mode, allowing me to soften into the positions during my hour class.  I really focused on the word and allowed it to gently command and guide my body as it became less rigid.

The theme continued as I entertained a new way of looking at my Dad's living situation.  He is 1 1/2-2 hours away from me, remains very independent, but is having challenges with his memory.  I accompany him on his doctor visits and during this past visit, we also met with the bank, the pharmacy and went to the supermarket in order for me to show him some healthier versions of frozen dinners.  Dad has never been a cook and tends to be a meat and potatoes guy, along with his PB&J sandwiches.  Of course, there are plenty of cookies and candy - very much the nutritionist's nightmare!  At each spot along the way, people recognized him, talked and joked with him and told me how much they enjoy seeing my Dad.

I left this visit with a very different perspective than I have held for the past few years.  While he has been saying that he will get the house ready to go on the market and move closer to me, when confronted, he opts out.  What I realized in my day with him is that I cannot control my Dad's future, even if with good intent.  Of course, I am concerned about safety, medical and all that goes along with having an elderly parent, but I also want my Dad to be in surroundings that are familiar and comfortable for him.  This shift was a definite softening of my thought process and it has felt good all week.

In the third situation with regard to clients, I observed how much I am on top of everything, researching, seeking solutions, wanting to provide healing in cases that seem so challenging.  I can easily lose sight that I am the messenger, but am not in control of the outcome, and when this happens, I take far too much responsibility for others - a lifelong theme.  I kept coming back to this concept of softening and was able to shift to a place of allowing and sharing more.  This, too, felt good.

After all, isn't it about feeling good?  When we feel good, positive energy radiates into the world.  I leave you with this thought for the week - what word will keep you engaged in your journey?

With peace and softness,