Last night I found out a yoga friend, younger than me, died of a stroke on Sunday. She left behind her husband, baby son and their 2 dogs. They had a full life.
Her husband posted a tribute to her on Facebook. Through tears all I could say to him was “my heart is with you”.
I cried a lot. For him. For her. For all of us who have ever experienced heart wrenching grief. For all of us who have asked, “Why?" and "God, where are you in this?"
Death is a reminder of life. It's a reminder to ask:
Are we living our life fully? If so, what does that look like for us?
Do we have the courage to live and to love with everything we have- here now today?
Are we willing to grow beyond our comfort zone?
Are we willing to live and love fully here now today without making excuses we have to wait for some future event to happen? I.e: more time, money, that job, relationship, whatever
I sobbed for awhile. Tried to make sense of it. So exhausted yet unable to sleep. So. I do what helps me understand life. I reflect and write.
Naturally I thought a lot about the relationship with my lover/man/beloved/friend (pictured below). I think about us all the time, even still. Like a teenager in love. True. Will that ever change? Hope not :)
I pondered our journey as individuals, and as a couple. I reflected on the power of our love to both create and destroy. We’ve had many challenges in the short time since we met. Lots of change, lots of uncertainty. Yet with change, comes growth if we choose to see it as such. I welcome all of it, even when “I don’t like it”, stamping my feet and clenching my wrists.
Beautiful really. Intense too. Life. So Rich. So Magical. So Precious. every moment sacred.
I believe we are all doing the best we can. However, there’s always room to grow. By growing I mean to grow in love and wisdom toward that which brings us joy and therefore peace in our heart.
To be clear. I am not chasing happiness. That’s a prison. It comes and goes. I talk about this in my book, Reclaiming Joy.
I am hungry for life. Always have been. Always will be. Hungry for deeper intimacy in my love relationship. Hungry to stop the nonsense and celebrate love. To release the past and our ex’s and focus on what is in front of me-- the US.
Even in my sadness last night, I still felt joy.
Why? I see possibility everywhere, especially in the challenges of life. I took my rfiends death as another reminder to LIVE.
As an opportunity to do better. To be better for myself, for my relationships, for humanity.
Perhaps most humbling---even in the sadness and tragedy of my friends death, I see her husband making a promise to her that he will make her proud. Has her death given him new life?
A promise he will care for and provide for their family. That he will meet her again when it’s his time.
Love. So Powerful. Love, it’s all there is.
Tonight I was moved to finish this poem (below) I started writing on Christmas Day while I was with my family and that of my love. I was conflicted at the time. Feeling the joy of being with family- his and mine. And also the tension.
Do they always coexist? Joy and tension?
If so isn’t inner peace simply a result of skillfully holding the tension?
Doing our best to be with all of it without judgment?
I believe so.
So on Christmas Day I asked myself...
”What If I Had One Year Left to Live”... would I do it differently than I am now?
The question is a way for me to step up to the plate of life.
To hone in on what matters and commit and recommit to taking action.
Here’s the “finished” poem:
“What If I Had One Year Left To Live?”
Get up Earlier...
Linger Longer in bed with my lover in bed?
Love More Freely, without demand of that same love in return?
Let Go Harder...
Accept Allow Ask
Talk More ... Face to Face
Be Present. Like really present for myself and others...
Move As if The Divine was dancing me?
See the Divine in everyone? Yes, EVERYONE.
Laugh More- Out Loud. Deep belly laughs.
Dance. More. Period.
With Myself. With my beloved. With my cats.
Call. Visit. Show Up, unexpected.
Take time, make time.
Stop the excuses
Pause. Exhale. Inhale. Reaeat.
HUG more. The 3 second heart to heart kind.
Forgive! Myself, others. Again and again.
Say Yes. Yes! Hell fucking YES!
Say thank you. A lot more. So much more.
Lend a hand?
Give, so much more.
So so much more.
Of myself, of my heart, of imperfect me.
Cherish it... My beauty and my imperfections. My rage and my love.
Shame and blame less.
Talk softly and seed beauty.
Give the benefit of the doubt.
Have faith. Deep faith.
Pray for peace. Pray for other.
Accept that everything lives within.
Believe in magic, miracles and the power of love. Then go for it! All in.
Embrace the effort required to build a beautiful life.
Celebrate the effort required to build a love filled life.
Let go of all effort and realize “effort” is only a word. It’s our attachment to it that causes us pain.
Have more fun.
Play in the sun.
Raw Vulnerable Sexy Sweet
Have the courage to speak up, ask, and turn it over to God.
My answer to all of this is YES.
I would love it all - Live it all.
With gratitude and grace.
Because yes, life is a one time race.
If I had one Year To Live, I would surrender my life to love, in all its forms.
At the end, I would have no regrets.
This is how I wish to live.
This is the prayer I give.
Last week I spoke about a perspective that helps me during those times of suffering: Life is a Marathon...Not a Sprint...
Today I share with you something I read that I've been trying to make sense of about our secrets and our pain: the size of our secrets represents the size of our pain.
So, lots of big secrets = lots of big pain and vice versa....hmmm?
Instead of going on and on about what this might mean, I wrote a poem instead:
Why Do You Weep?
Sweet child, why do you weep?
We all have secrets we keep.
It's time to enter the deep.
Open your heart.
Unfurl your wings.
Your song is now.
It's time you sing.
To love and be loved
It's why we are here.
Your longing for love
Is the secret my dear.
Love yourself now
Go into the pain
What awaits beyond
Is for your gain.
Let the tears flow
There's nowhere else to go
Loving so deep
No more secrets to keep
No more tears to weep.
In honor of the Super New Moon on May 25, I share my poem to inspire you to act with a sense of urgency for that which makes you come alive...and once alive, you must awaken.
Find your way. Stay.
In faith you are free.
Don't you see?
Nowhere else to be.
Time and space eludes us all.
Sweet child, it's why you continue to fall.
Make a pact. Don't look back.
Clean the grime. It's time.
Prune your garden. Weed the dead.
Lift your chin. Look ahead.
It's time to sow. It's time to grow.
Faith...all you ever need to know.
Super New Moon it's to you I bow.
I seed intentions and release the how.
It's about the journey, this we know.
Oh sweet child--go play and let the rest go.
Be true to you. Speak your voice.
There is -- no other choice.
Claim your life!
I promise it's so worth the temporary strife.
One day you will see, it was all meant to be...exactly and perfectly.
Close your eyes now. Be still and go slow.
Dear one...you must become un-done.
How sweet it is to let it be- to open our heart and simply see.
Looking for nothing.
Simply being AWAKE.
My loves, AWAKE is the only step we must take.
When I pause and stop to be, I reconnect to the deepest part of me;
There is love there is light, sweetheart there's no more fight.
This place is pure, for this I am sure.
My mind wipes clean, my body let's go, my heart blooms open to all the unseen.
I am here. Now.
Present and Alive.
Sweet child. Open, dive and enjoy the ride.
We are ALL meant to THRIVE.
Thank you for THIS day.
Sometimes we must fall, to let go of it all;
Oh how we weep, this illusion we keep;
My cry is the song, it's the truth all along;
My prayer is the highest and best for all;
If it's not for one, it is for none.
Don't you see? I am you and you are me!
How sweet to have faith,
knowing it's worth this excruciating wait.
And when the time comes, oh how we will see --all of it was exactly meant to be.
At last together, we will sing our sweetest song.
A poem I wrote for all of us to let go, love our self into being who we are.
Exhale. Let Go.
Exhale. Go Slow.
Exhale. You Know.
Exhale. Take a Bow.
Exhale. Renew a Vow.
Exhale. You Speak.
Exhale. You Weep.
Exhale. Look Up.
Exhale. You're Enough.
Exhale. Fear Not.
Exhale. Faith Rules.
Exhale. Darling, your life is your school.
Exhale. Be Tough.
Exhale. Own Up.
Exhale. Be True.
Exhale. Its time to Be You.
Thank you for these words I pray.
Thank you for this precious day.
Thank you for this beautiful song.
Thank you for the spirit of life that carries me along.
I rest in your grace.
I know it isn't a race.
I bow to you now.
I understand my place.
Grateful and true, it's a gift to be YOU.
Baby, Let Go.