Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Who Will You Be When You Grow Up?


My daughter, who will be six on Thursday, was talking about what she would be when she grows up. She can't decide of course, like most six year olds, but so far I think she wants to be a princess doctor ballerina piano player. I jokingly said "mommy hasn't even decided what she wants to be when she grows up so there is no hurry."

How many of us, at six, knew? How many of us would let a six year old make that decision for us now? I have 4 children, all daughters and what I've tried to impress upon them is that it's not so important what you are when you grow up but who you will be. What kind of person will you become, and indeed, what kind of person are you now?

Children have the most delightful way of living completely in the moment. Yes they think about the future, but they don't live there. It's rather frustrating at times, for us as parents who have our own agenda, to deal with the child who dawdles or plays or jumps when it's time to be quick or serious or still.

I was reading a blog article the other day about how little we value childhood in our society, that children are a burden to be borne and that we must hurry and make them independent for their own good(a great lie we tell ourselves, when it's us who are in such a big rush) so that they can survive in the real world. (I would love to give credit and a link but I can't find it now. If it was your blog please inform me).

Yet it is those among us who have the ability to accept what is, to feel joy in simple moments, to adjust and flow and be resilient in the real world that survive and make it through relatively unscathed. Those who are emotionally ready and not rushed through. Those who are rushed through, forced to grow up, forced to be adults while still kids, to be independent, spending hours per day without the guidance of a parent to teach and model behaviour, these kids often have the most difficulty adjusting to real life.

I watched/listened to a speech yesterday that Michael Jackson gave at Oxford University in 2001 about the rights of children and how a whole generation of children have been robbed of the right to be childlike because of society's need to rush them through, make them independent. It seems there is a rush to adulthood, I see it in the media, the clothing, the trends, the need for stuff instead of substance, television or computers or organized activities, instead of simple play. There is a push to academia at 2 years old, hothousing to make little geniuses, making a child's value dependent upon what he can provide in the way of pride for the parents rather than the parents simply being proud of who he or she naturally is.

I think even a child asking the innocent question "What will I be when I grow up?" needs a different answer then the one that describes a job or a career. What a child needs is the ability to answer the question "Who am I now? How am I of value?" and they need to recieve the most simple answer "You are the most perfect creation on earth, you are my child and I love you" and that's it. No conditions, implied or otherwise.

We as parents need to love our children unconditionally, without a thought as to what they will eventually be but for exactly as they are right this moment, products of a universe that is divine, full and valuable citizens of planet earth with abilities and knowledge of the moment that is superior to any an institute of higher learning can instill.

I watch my two younger children playing at the lakeside the other day. To find such joy in just being at the water's edge, to just pile sand and be together, in the sunshine, in the water, with their mother and each other. To just be there was such a joy.

My job is only to guide them through to peaceful resolutions to conflict but it's not to interfere with their growth and individuality. I don't want them to be anything in particular when they grow up, my only dream is that they follow their own dreams, walk their own paths and find joy in the simple things, the piles of sand, the roar of the surf, the magic of the driftwood at every age. I would expect maturity to change how this manifests but I hope the inert joy, the childlike appreciations stays with them into adulthood.

And finally, myself, as I stumble forward, finally finding a path, I'm learning to unschool myself, to find for me not what I want to be when I grow up, I still haven't figured that out, but I know who I am now and who I will always be. I had to grow back into it. I hope my children never grow out of it.


Michael Jacksons’ bill of seven inalienable children’s rights

1 the right to be loved without having to earn it
2 the right to be protected without having to deserve it
3 the right to feel valuable even if you came into the world with nothing
4 the right to be listened to without having to be interesting
5 the right to be read a bedtime story without having to compete with the evening news (or Eastenders)
6 the right to an education without having to dodge bullets at school
7 the right to be thought of as adorable (even if you ha a face only a mother could love)



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Monday, June 29, 2009

What's in the Cards for Me?


In the spirit of trying something new I had a Tarot reading a few days ago. What an interesting experience. I asked about career, job, future ways to earn money etc. as was requested of the reader. She spread the cards in a Celtic cross and a total of ten cards were pulled. The results were fascinating and I thought I would share them here and get your thoughts on the reading. This reading was done via instant message.

When she asked how many times she should shuffle the cards I answered 7.

then I told her my question, career, work, ways to earn money, What should I do in that area?

First card is the present position - how things are right now. The card is the Page of Cups. Cups are a sign of water - - flowing movement. This cup
also means there is something you need to learn and you should take some time to meditate or reflect on this.

Second card is the immediate influences - this would be the influences of those around you and you yourself. Your card is the Strength card - a major arcana with a great deal of meaning. Strength has the infinity symbol over her head. She is petting a lion and the lion is in a submissive pose Just a lion, more a symbol than anything. This card is a symbol of confidence and power. Which leads me to believe that those around you see you as strong and energetic. This could be why you're getting pressure people expect great things for you and want to see you moving toward goals. This card could also be how you're feeling. Making money does not mean 9 to 5 and I think you're well aware of that.


Third card is the goal and destiny card. It will show what can be accomplished. Sometimes this card is hard to read right away. You got the Fool another major arcana. In modern day times we think of a fool as foolish. It does not mean this at all. It means youthful, striving for new knowledge, learning, growing. On the card the fool is appears to be walking off a cliff, but we don't know what's below him. It could just be that he will stumble, not fall.
He also caries a small bag it is all his belongings - he travels light.
The background is sunny and calm. The fool looks up and not straight ahead. So you may want to remember at times to ground yourself and look at all angles. try to look before you leap, but continue to explore new grounds. Yes, there are cautions in the fool, but also joys


Fourth card
is distant past - could be up to 2 years ago. This card can be dark, but remember it's the past. Your distant past card is the X of cups.
Cups are also relationship cards, this is a good card, it shows that your relationships are strong. Your love is strong too. It also shows happiness in community and relationships. So your past looks good.


Fifth card
is recent past, usually the last 6 months or so. It can also show what is happening now or about to come into being. Another cups! You are the relationship girl today! Knight of cups. The knight is riding a horse and he is approaching a small creek. The water is calm, but it shows a journey . The journey was peaceful and much was learned, but you have not gone through it all yet. Keep going on paths that feel right to you

Sixth card is the future influence. This card shows environmental, emotional and personal influences it could be. Another Major Arcana - This is an interesting card here. It shows that there is honor in your ultimate goal.
There are naked people with their arms raised to an angle in this card
This shows freedom and security but the angle is here in a position of judgement. just do what needs to be done and go forward. You will have to learn patience, but your efforts will pay off.

Seventh card
the questioner card - denotes your attitude toward the current situation. Usually the card meaning is weakened some Hmmm, have you been considering having another baby? Or someone around you? Ok, this card does show maternity. I'm wondering if your path may be leading you toward other mothers or if you're going to be a maternal presence. It also shows some balance issues. So you will want to narrow things down so that you don't lose balance


Card 8
is the environmental factors - how the universe is set up to handle your family and job situation. It is the page of Swords. Swords symbolize air
This card totally makes sense It shows that you have a tendency to take on many goals and sometimes change your course and this card is reverse too by the way.
but it also shows that as long as you are very clear on your goals, you can continue to work toward them. If Friends become too demanding, you may need to learn to say 'no' a little louder.

Ninth card is your inner emotion card - your fears, your hopes, your dreams. King of swords Yes, you must be an air and water girl.
This card is interesting and a bit harder to read in this position. It shows power and creativity which leads me to believe that you're feeling empowered with your writing. I don't see a lot of fears right now but I sense some in you.
it's unusual not to have any fears. but maybe that fool is at play?
So health - emotional and physical may be. Not much in health cards for you, but your creative side is VERY strong now and may be overpowering things.

Tenth card - last one! is the final result - it shows the likelihood of things to come. Another major arcana!
and a SUPER powerful card - the High Priestess. The high priestess is sitting on a throne with a veil behind her. The veil has pomegranates, which are another sign of fertility. There is a black and white column on either side of her, which could mean good and evil. She holds the Torah in her hand, which is a powerful spiritual guide. This card reminds you to trust in your spiritual side. Don't give up easily even if your fist attempt fails. You have a great deal of power at your hands and you can use that to obtain your goals but you will have to do the work. This card also shows knowledge and passion, these are your guiding traits.

So there it is. My first Tarot reading. I really like how positive it is. If anyone has any experience and intuition to add I'd appreciate it.







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Sunday, June 28, 2009

Charlie's Place



Misty dew-dropped memories seep
like secret smiles on youthful cheeks
brightened by the dusk's red sky
shining on a youthful eye

tripping down on gravelled pathways
towards the place where teen youths gather
dancing Thriller, zombie grooves
toeing moon dance pop king moves

Shooting pool, in laughing halls
breaking up the marble balls
pacman sings happy lament
to chocolate milk and cola drink

Quiet man behind the counter
smiling at a young boy's saunter
gentle woman gives advice
in a sweet familiar voice

Days gone by, teenage history
Quiet man now knows the mystery
gentle woman takes his hand
serenaded by the Thriller man.


When the news of Michael Jackson's death was reported an old friend of mine contacted me and told me she first thought of me, and all the times we walked to "Charlie's" which was the local pool hall and hangout in our hometown when I was a teen.

My teen years are filled with memories of that place, I can picture it now as if I were there, Charlie and Mae, behind the counter, selling cigarettes two for a quarter, candy, chips, pop.

They were ever patient and infinitely kind and sweet. Mae passed a way a few years ago and today Charlie followed. Suddenly I'm transported to the early eighties to a place where only memories can take me, and with the passing of Charlie it's as though that little memory, of dancing all the way to Charlies, reenacting Thriller with my girlfriends, has been wrapped and folded neatly and sealed in a gilded envelope and filed away in a special place now, as if my teen years have been stamped in the upper right hand corner, ready to mail into that difinite infinity I too will travel one day. RIP Charlie and Godspeed.



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Friday, June 26, 2009

Lakeside Visit


Fields of aqua tinted waves
lap at shores of muted tan
sky kissed horizons smile gently
on the warmth of sparkling sand

Girl of blond plays darting dare me
with a tempting surf of bubbled edges
laughing with the older girl
with swirling, tangled brunette tresses

Sun gazed skin wet with droplets
footprints marr the smooth clay beach
sail boats drift across the distance
perfect dancers beyond our reach

Soaring seagulls voices muted
by the shouting lakeside's roar
swoop and take their place on buoys
snow white wings prepared to soar

Frosting clouds in a pretty pile
decorating blueberry skies
Divinity in every corner
inspires grateful quiet sighs




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Thursday, June 25, 2009

Would You?


Would you love this girl
who cries in the night
imagining wrongs
who starts every fight

Would you love this girl
who likes being alone
yet craves the touch
of her loved one

Would you love this girl
who secretly wishes
for your hand to hold
and your sweet soft kisses

Would you love this girl
with a heart of gold
who forgets herself
and embraces the cold

Would you love this girl
of opposite ways
who wants you to love her
all of your days

Would you love this girl
who dreams of the past
who embraces the future
and wants your love to last

Would you love this girl
who holds out her arms
and says please love me
inspite of my charms

Would you love this girl
with the wrinkled skin
whose heart beats inside
a body no longer thin

Would you love this girl
with the greying hair
and the heart that mellowed
with each passing year

Would you love this girl
who believe what you told her
when you said together
you wished to grow older

Would you love this girl
with the passionate heart
who still loves that boy
as she did at the start.



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Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Live a Biased Life!

Don't be objective! I read this the other day and it struck me as an unusual piece of advice. Usually when making decisions we weigh them out, look at all the different sides of things, who will be affected, the financial side of things and then make the decision. I was reading some of the writings of Dr. Wayne Dyer and his advice was to make the decision and then figure out how to make it work.

How interesting! He went on to further explain that our heart knows what's right for us, which path feels right and good and true and to trust it. So if we are trying to determine which path to take first listen to it, then after the decision is made, work steadfastly, without hesitation to walk down that path, disregarding the naysayers, enlisting the help of those who support us and eventually our dream will be realised. The only caution he made was to not get too caught up in a timetable, just take the path, road blocks and all, as it comes.

Somehow, this resonated with me. It's probably because intuitively this is how I know things ought to be. But as a mother of 4 children with a husband to consider, often I do stop, stand back and decide against things that I want to do simply because it will impact the people I love or I fear it will negatively impact them, although there often isn't any proof that this will be the case. In fact it's possible that it will only positively impact them and that I'm using them as an excuse to not do things for fear of failing.

When I watched the movie "The Shift" there was a particular storyline about a woman who was an artist who had fallen away from drawing and painting to the point where her children didn't even know she could paint. This storyline spoke to me as a woman but what I noticed, and I'm not sure if it was deliberate or not, was how oblivious her husband was to what she needed or wanted. BUT that when she said it, immediately he was supportive and understanding. He just hadn't ever known. Often we do not give the people around us the credit they deserve and do not realise how much they want us to be happy and to do the things we love. If we make the intention of our plans known, often our families and friends will fall in line with incredible support, to do whatever it takes so that our dreams are fulfilled.

A good example is my sister. My sister has applied to become a RCMP officer. If accepted she will travel to Regina, Saskatchewan for 26 weeks training. Her husband and children have fallen in line with her decision and are completely supportive of her dream. They will have to be without her for 6 months but they are already putting the plan into place just in case this works out for her. She is constantly surprised at the number of people who have come forward in complete support of her dream once she decided to go public with it. We all wish her great success and cheer her on in her physical training! And not that it matters all that much, but my sister is 41 years old and is not using that as an excuse to move forward towards her dream!

So, do not be objective! Be completely biased in your decision making, follow your heart, and the people who are truly your support will back you in your decision, those who don't may not be the friends you thought they were. There is a balance to be struck certainly but those who are determined and confident make good choices and make them work! Sometimes we might have to wait for the right timing, particularly when the children are small, but there are still small steps you can make during that time. Follow your heart, follow your dreams, no excuses!



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Tuesday, June 23, 2009

What is this Love?

What is this love?
From where did it come?
how did it know where to find me
how did it know it should stay?
What is this love
that sooths and consoles me?
Does it realise how my heart
fears that this love will drift away?

What is this love that intrudes
on the thoughts that are secretly held?
Invading a soul that is damaged
by the times when it lived in a void.
What is this love that rescues
and holds me in hands warm and kind?
It lifts me to gently caress
a soul that was vacant inside.

What is this love that surrounds
and intrudes on a life half lived?
It connects our hearts with the thread
of its sweet aching gentle embrace
What is this love that fulfills?
bringing me the peace that I seek
It stills me when storms hurt my heart
landing a contented smile on my face.



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Sunday, June 21, 2009

Acceptance with Passion!

With acceptance comes peace. Many humans spend their time on this earth searching for peace. They may think they are searching for success or money or fame or some other physical gratification and reward but the truth is they are hoping that the end result is that they are peaceful and happy in their existence on the planet. Of course I can't speak for every human. But as a student of humanity that seems to be the underlying motivation for human beings in their actions.

In order to have the peace we crave though we must first come to accept where we are in a particular moment. To find joy and peace in this time, this result, this event, this very time that we are in. There is no joy to be found in wanting and living in need and no peace to be found in searching and desiring something that may never come or that when it eventually shows up does not bring the desired result and leaves the person further lacking.

Because of this paradox though, this idea that we must accept what we have to have peace, leaves many people with the understanding that you sort of get to be lazy, lose ambition, sit under a bodhi tree and meditate and watch life passing you by. That there is nothing to be done, whatever will be will be and therefore why even try? This is not how it works. For even Siddhartha Gautama(The Buddha)got up and served the world after he recieved enlightenment under the tree.

This passive sort of mindset is not how we achieve peace. For what are we giving to the earth if we simply sit? How are we serving our fellow human if we watch him walk by in need and do not help? If we are to find peace it's by being passionate about what we should be doing in our lives to be fulfilled and to serve ourselves and humanity.

So how do we reconcile acceptance and passion in our lives. The key is not in choosing one or the other but in holding both as our guiding forces. Find your passion, discover what it is you want to do, get out there and live fully in the world with enthusiasm and passion and ambition. Enjoy it! The acceptance part is that you know that you are OK with whatever results you see from your efforts.

The best part of living this way is that you cannot experience failure. There is no failure to be found, only results. If you try something and discover that it's not working for you it is seen simply as a learning experience, something you had to do to learn the lesson that needed to be learned in that moment. By not setting great store in the end results and accepting them when they come whatever they are, you find peace.

So imagine a life without failure. Imagine living in the world as a contributing member of human society, with goals and aspirations, integrity and ambition and imagine that you greet whatever comes your way with acceptance and a knowing that you are in harmony with divinity and the earth. That is peace. And that is ultimately what we are all reaching for.

Namaste



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Thursday, June 18, 2009

Resetting and Renewal~Spending Time in Nowhere.

Life is a consistent flow of stops and starts, moment on to moment, all interwoven to make this tapestry we call our lives. A while ago I was travelling along, completely sure of my path, I still am, and that path will reappear in time. Yet just to make sure I didn't sit too long in my comfort zone along came a challenge, a new story idea, a new novel to be written, a fiction, love story, so real in my mind I almost feel as though I lived it. I know I wish I had. My non fiction book is now on hold for a while, though almost completely finished.

So starts the next journey. And in order to complete it I have to work on it regularly. I have to set the goals, the first one to be finished the first draft by September and the editing by the end of the year. I hope to publish by next February. Reasonable goals I've been told.

Doors seem to have opened recently that I hadn't even knocked on. My poetry, from my blog, the stuff you have all read for free, may soon end up in a book as well with some editing, for what you've all been forced to endure has been all first draft, off the top of my head, pure inspiration, sappy, amateur stuff that really isn't complete. But with some editing it's good enough for publication according to some "experts" and they've suggested that I choose the best and submit it. Apparently rhyming poetry is a throwback to the past and very uncommon now and my rough ramblings impress. Go figure, there is no accounting for taste.

I have had interesting comments on my poem "Limbo" in my last post. Some on here, but others came to me via email. It's interesting that in all the personal growth literature, a common thread of advice is to live in the moment, to witness and enjoy it as it happens with no further thought to what will come the next moment. Limbo is sort of that isn't it? We sit there and we just are. Yet we act as though being in between places is a negative, in fact, the word limbo has a negative connotation, when we are there we spend that time waiting instead of being. I wonder that we aren't supposed to spend more time in limbo, in that in between place.

It is said that it's the space between the notes that makes the music, the space between the bars that holds the tiger, and indeed in meditation often the training teaches us to get into the space between our thoughts to find our deepest peace.

With all the things going on in my life right now, potential, opportunity, inspiration, grief, happiness, worry, change, limbo is where I find my inner peace and strength. Spending time enjoying the nowhere, the waiting, the holding pattern might be the key to making the most of the journey.


Namaste



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Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Limbo

Adrift, floating on a world of is
watching all the empty clouds
swaying with the nowhere breeze
the day is fraught with a void of words

Sitting here in vacant space
nothing moving, no true fear
no direction, no permission
compass needle points nowhere

The place between before and after
the moment of lackadaisy
somewhere in the centre of
being sane and being crazy

normal is superfluous
all there is is mere existence
being where I'm supposed to be
with no energy to go the distance

moment by wasted moment
the world attempts to spin me gentle
and If I could I'd plead my case
instead I stay where things are simple

The fault line lies between here and there
lazy tectonics will not shift
ever mired in living limbo
awaiting the continental drift









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Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Be Brave Little Buckaroo!



I did it! It was like a blind date! I was so nervous. What to wear, will they like me, will I say stupid things and make a fool of myself. Then I ignored all my inner self doubt and went ahead and did it.

I showed up 45 minutes early to the park. Downtown Stratford, Ontario has its own "Avon River" reminiscent of its British counterpart and namesake and that is where the dragon boats practice. They meet on the island in the centre of the river. The email from Leanne had said there would be two teams arriving for an 8pm practice and that I should look for the less serious team. She said "if you see a group warming up and stretching, that's not us"!

I watched two other teams practice and struck up a conversation with a young girl and her grandmother who were waiting and watching her mom. We chatted and I told them I was there to try it for the first time.

The Grandma was very excited by the idea that I was just walking into a group of people I hadn't met before. She thought the idea intriguing and invited me to sit on the bench beside them to watch the other teams and chat. They were so excited for me!

Then I saw the more serious group drift off leaving behind approximately half a dozen others. I made my way over and asked them what the name of their team was. "The ASS team" they replied and I had found my bunch. I introduced myself and for the record, ASS stands for "Assorted Stratford Strokers".

What a fun group! Silly, great humour, a few newbies, though none as new as me, and a woman named Cathy took me under her wing! I was assigned to sit next to Cathy, who is a very experienced boater and they sat Henry, also very experienced, in front of me to make up for my lack of skills and experience. It was determined that I row left. I just passed the paddle from hand to hand to decide which way felt right. It was all pretty scientific, not!

I was given very simple and easy to follow instructions from both my seat mate Cathy and our coach Geoff who sat at the stern of the boat. Our caller, who is in training showed up a bit late. Leanne, who invited me to come, showed up at the last moment and was so excited I had come. She was literally dancing around. She was experienced but hadn't been able to participate the previous year so was also a bit rusty.

I kept up pretty well but it was crazy hard work. It tried not to stress too much and my seat mate was constantly reassuring that I was doing great and keeping up well and she encouraged me to pull up my paddle when I felt fatigued. I took this advice several times although had I known I was so near the end of the run I likely would have made it. As with everything, when I just let go and didn't over think it I would get into a zone and it would be perfect. I couldn't talk while rowing though or I completely lost the rhythm.

I am extremely proud of what I've done. I have considered this for years. I decided to commit to the team and guess what? I'm in a race on July 18th! I'll be sure to bring along a photographer! I think I'd better get into some serious physical training in order to keep up. But this team seems to talk more about paddling than winning and that appeals.

My back hurts, my shoulders hurt, my calves hurt, my butt hurts, in fact pretty much every muscle in my body hurts except my heart. It's beating loud and clear, letting me know that this is the thing for me to do, that I will find the teamwork, the competition, the friendship and the sport both rewarding and fun. I emailed the treasurer of the team this morning to make payment arrangements which is incredibly reasonable, $100 for the entire season including 3 competitions.

Thank you for all your encouragement and positive comments. They were greatly helpful and knowing I had to come back and report back kept me from flaking out!

So if I can do it, you can too! Just get out there and do it. Try something new. Just do it. Dragon Boating, skydiving, drawing classes, whatever you want to do, put yourself outside of your comfort zone and try it! All you have to do is be brave, little buckaroo!



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Monday, June 15, 2009

Row Row Row Your Boat!


Sell your cleverness and purchase bewilderment. I've heard this advice many times and the easiest way to accomplish this is to try something new, to step outside of your comfort level, to place yourself in a situation where you might horribly fail or you might succeed brilliantly but because of your inexperience you have no choice but to be humble and bewildered. The lessons learned in such an endeavor are a great reminder that there is an infinite universe of knowledge to be absorbed and that no matter what we've learned, no matter what our experience, there is always more. And in tossing ourselves into a new project, hobby or even a new job or career we are allowing ourselves to experience the growth we are sent her to experience.

I'm excited! Tonight I'm trying something new. It may be horrible, it may be wonderful but whatever it is I'm so excited. I'm meeting a bunch of people I've never met before to join a rowing team!

I have, for a long time, loved rowing. Growing up by the ocean, rowing a boat is just something the kids do and we grew up in a small rowboat called a punt. In fact a couple of years ago in my island home town, Change Islands and the neighbouring island, Fogo Island, the punt made a comeback in a big way with a regatta, a race of the traditional punt. The two-person teams row from one island to the other vying for the first place prize. I'm proud to say a Change Islands' team won this year!

I like going to the gym, I like walking but for a long time I've wanted to try a sport, a team sport. Badminton bores me, I don't enjoy volley ball, I don't have the skills for hockey. Rowing has always appealed to me but being in a very landlocked area of Ontario, along with being the mother of 4 children, two of them very young, I thought maybe this wouldn't ever happen.

Then I heard about dragon boating. And I checked out the website and found that team rowing is alive and well in Stratford and the surrounding area.

So I've been invited to try it tonight! This team is not crazy competitive and do it for the love of it as much as the winning and that suits me perfectly.

Along with the sport comes training with weights, training for races, camaraderie and team work. I've got a lot to learn and I so look forward to it.
So tonight I get to row a boat for the first time in years! I'm very excited and a bit nervous. It looks a bit complicated but I'll do my best to understand and follow the instructions given. We shall see how it goes.

Trying something new is always exciting. Even if this turns out to not be something I particularly enjoy at least I will have always had the experience of giving it a shot! I'm very excited! I'll update you on how things go!



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Thursday, June 11, 2009

Depression

It pours without stopping
drenching the dirt
mud runs in riviluts
revealing the hurt

Try to be noble
pragmatic and stoic
but the rain keeps on falling
drowning this poet

And the question is why
and the answer evades
the bright light of day
by its closely drawn shades

And the damp hurts the bones
while the misery falls
on the heads of the innocent
who did nothing at all

And the girls weep with horror
and the rest curl with pain
and the sky sends its gift
of never ending rain.






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Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Heaven; A Theory


Where do we go when we die? Do we go anywhere? Is there an hereafter? Is there a heaven and hell and what do we need to do to get anywhere, up or down. This question has haunted humankind throughout it's history and is the basis of a most world religions and the cause of disagreements amongst people and groups of people. It is a thought provoking question to ponder, this I know for sure.

What do I believe? Well I don't know that we "go" anywhere. I do believe we are a part of the larger source of creative energy and that we become one with that energy in an easy manner once we are unencumbered by our physical limitations. I also believe that we can have moments of that place while still on earth.

It's a complicated topic but I know that there isn't a reward-punishment system in place. That sits wrong with me, that humans' rules would be the guideline for who goes where, that if we belong to this church or that religion, and do this thing or that thing, we will be rewarded and if we do or don't do the other thing, we are doomed to eternal torture upon our death.

Nope, I don't buy that at all because from all my experience with religious opinion in the manner the guidance, the judgement comes from humans and their definition of what God and the hereafter is rather than what the spirit that is God guides them to think and believe. I don't believe that judgement and love can exist side by side in either man or God.

There is a lot of "tell me what I believe" in religion and that doesn't work for those of us who want to learn to believe for ourselves and be authentic in our spiritual beliefs. Many churches operate on the notion that we as humans need to be told what to think and that they are just the ones to do it. This would work if there was one option but when we have a competition for "souls" going on it just doesn't seem to ring as true to this human.

I don't' believe that spirituality and religion are mutually exclusive. I believe that they can and are supposed to coexist. They are to be held and lived side by side. But the problem comes when we forget about the individuality of humans. When we forget that each of us are a part of God and not separate. We don't need to go back to God, we are already a part of the divine essence. We need to walk with truth daily and keep in mind that others have a different truth and that's ok.

There are no two people who believe exactly the same thing so how do you organise that? The human way is to conform people and make them believe, the God way is to allow them to find their own way. This might be through an organised religion, more often than not it is, however this is not the only way and not a necessary way.

I've heard it said that God appears to people in the manner and form that they can interpret it best. That makes complete sense. I know I define and know of "God" in a way that is completely real and true to me. I also accept and know that others need to see a physical manifestation of the spirit to make this work in their own minds and yet others need guidance in their journey. I know that accepting that all have a different idea and understanding of the divine is in line with the individuality of the human animal. I feel absolutely no desire to convert anyone to my truth, it is mine. People talk of "The Way" but there is no "The Way" there is only "my way" and "your way".

Recently my fellow blogger spoke of a conversation with a Cherokee Chief who defined it this way "religion is man speaking to God, spirituality is God speaking to man". How very wise. How very true.

I can picture a heaven with pearly gates where all live as one, where angels romp and play and eat cream cheese. To believe it makes it so for we all create our own reality and everything begins with a thought. I picture a place where energies meld without form into pure white love and light. It's not a place in the geography sense but a form of being, all around us and within us. A place we are all apart of now. It is of solace to me to picture those in heaven doing the things they love the most, fishing, reading, whatever their bliss was on earth. I understand the need to feel reunited with a loved one someday. I just don't think the reunion happens on a physical level. It's different. It's spiritual and it doesn't have to happen until after you die.

I wonder if that's why the paranormal and the visits of Angels and the belief in demons and spirit guides and ghosts all coexist in the human race. Is it because all of them are true? Is it because they are pure belief held by members of the human race and if thought creates reality then they are absolutely real? So the pearly-gated heaven is real and the source-light heaven is real and the Nirvana of the Buddhists is real as is the theories of reincarnation equal in validity. Moreso,for the atheist, when we're dead, it's lights out and that's it as well. That being the reality of the Athiest is also true.

Each are truths born of the pure belief in them manifested by the thoughts of humans who recognise this as their truth. How wonderful if it is! How perfect if all of the differences we see here on earth from individual to individual, from culture to culture, religion to religion, sect to sect, are all true in the after earth life. And why not? Surely after witnessing the miracle that is the human existence such a stretch is not that difficult to make.

But for now, on this earth, I believe that all are divine and all are valid and all are part of one large source of love. I'm in no hurry to see if my theories on the hereafter are correct. This world is still mine and I plan to enjoy it while I'm here. I hope you do the same. A little bit more of heaven on earth can only be a good thing. And I feel the presence of those I've lost around me frequently and know that the essence of a human never travels too far. I miss their physical presence, I weep for their loved ones who feel alone, but I know that they're still around, still here, for in my mind, there is nowhere to go. And that knowledge brings me solace.

Namaste




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Monday, June 8, 2009

Wheels of Gold

It's hard to believe you are gone my friend. I remember you as carefree and loving and so much fun! People who know you now say you didn't change. You'll be missed by your family and friends.

Wheels of Gold

Bigger than life you lived it your way
faster and further you siezed each new day
on your own terms you carried on through
with a glint in your eye we intimately knew

The smile of a demon, but an angel at heart
that grin you gave freely was free from the start
life was much better when you were around
though we couldn't keep up you were faster than sound

You inspired our minds and heightened our senses
disharmed us with your smile and tore down our defences
you were bigger and braver than any you'll find
unique and special, simply one of a kind

Now you've roared into heaven on wheels of pure gold
they're laughing with joy at your devilish soul
Gabriel and Michael better stand down
An angel named Edward just rode into town!

In memory of Edward Coles killed in a tragic motorcycle accident last week.



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Audrey's Ocean Poem


Finite yet infinite in scope
our mind does not fully comprehend
the power that lies in the waters
that brace against the tides and the wind

Sweet baleen orbs are but specks
in the vast blue-green mass of your depths
velvet hands with the gentlest of touch
can break man without taking a breath

We love you conversely we hate you
your revenge for our plunder is dark
reminder that you are first master
you pluck justice from us as a lark

Helpless we sit on your swell
hapless and silly and vulnerable
The sea laughs with the gulls on her crest
at our feeble attempts at controlling her

Awestruck we sit as your brother
saline in this pair is prevailing
Man is comprised of the ocean
inspiration the ship we are sailing

Calm as the sun drops below you
yet vicious in hate with the gale
your deception lies not in your depths
but the folly of man's bid to prevail



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Saturday, June 6, 2009

Unwrapped Memories

The memories come crashing in as I walk along, absorbing the news. Memories of a forbidden love, a love that saved me with its intensity and desperation, memories of the quintessential bad boy with the heart of gold. A love doomed, a love that was short-lived and ill-advised and one I was blessed to have known.

At 23 I was fortunate enough to have a bad boy affair and smart enough to not pursue it beyond the fun that it was. He was my Edward Cullen, and in fact, his name was indeed Edward. We met at a party my cousin was holding, a drunken bash, a regular occurance and after a loud physical argument with my then-fiance who had become regularly more physical in his dealings with me. (This one in particular ended with him throwing a beer bottle across a room at me, missing me and going through a wall and him(fiance)leaving)

I was despondant. I knew I had to leave the relationship. I was sitting on the back porch, it was a foggy night and there was nothing to see except grey drizzly fog when a voice said "hello". He was handsome. His smile lit up the night, defeating the grey that surrounded him and I impulsively invited him to sit down beside me. The connection was instantaneous and we talked for an hour before walking into the fog, out of sight of the party. We shared a first kiss, the kind of first kiss that all other first kisses are measured by. We left shortly after on his motorcycle. My cousin tried to talk me out of it to which his friend said "Is your cousin not good enough for me?" His friend, my cousin relented and we spent the weekend together before he reluctantly took me home. He was to leave the following day to return to his(our) home province.

Edward was a rebel. He had a bad boy image to uphold and was very determined to do so. But he also had a heart that was more rare than gold. Every cliche'd conversation right down to "I'm no good for you" and "don't fall in love with me" fell between us. And we didn't fall in love necessarily but it was something pretty damned special and not even remotely stereotypical in its essence.

After that weekend I went home, a newly fallen woman to try to make sense of a relationship I knew I had now doomed. I thought my weekend fling was over, it was the first ever such affair I'd had and I was shocked to see the bad boy waiting for me at the bus stop when I got off work that following Tuesday. He had changed his plans and would be around for another month. We planned and schemed and thus began my only illicit affair, one I refuse to be ashamed of, one that neither of us could seem to stop, pushed along by passion and youth and selfishness. We both had others we were to be loyal to but that mattered not a bit. Neither of us cared much for their feelings it seemed. We were trying to fall in love. We thought we had. We said the words and we felt the passion. I think we must have in some way.

I have memories of clubhouse sandwiches, the crispness of the bacon vivid in my mind at a restaurant that looked like a castle. I remember walking through cemetaries,(don't ask) climbing treehouses and spending time in them, in fact we frequented a treehouse at the edge of a farmer's field. We called it our place. Motorcycle rides were also part of our days and sneaking and lying accompanied our relationship, but not too each other, to the ones were supposed to be loyal to.

Slamming into my memory is the ebony hair I ran my fingers through and the piercing eyes that shivered my senses, strengthening and weakening me all at once. Never was there such an intense time in my life, never were my emotions so close to the surface, all of them, love, fear, defiance, passion, all simmering and bubbling through the tips of the hair on my skin, heightening my senses and connecting us. Never would I want to experience the stress of such a situation again, but oh, my it was exciting!

We never really ended it...it was never really over...but I moved back home with the intent of leaving my existing relationship which I did. I saw him at a local fair after that, and the spark was still there but circumstances prevented us ever being together again. We connected through the years, never in person, always in secret and never after we were in our respective relationships, just enough that we knew, both of us, that the time we had together was real, was special and was remembered.

Our last moments together were at a local dance in his home town. It was a slow dance, a country song, one we both complained and laughed that we hated. I will never forget the song. It was pretty hokey and now I always remember it as our song. The feelings we had were still there, we could feel the pull, that night but we couldn't arrange to be together, I had a commitment to drive others and he had to drive somewhere early in the morning. Somehow we managed that slow dance. Then he was gone.

We both knew it was over and that it would never be over and he reassured me he'd never forget me. He was leaving town the next morning, going to Grand Falls he said, so we wouldn't have the opportunity to be together again. It was love failed. It was love too stupid to die but forced to end by chance and circumstance, it got tucked into the recesses of my mind like a precious souvenir you put away, until something reminds you of that special time in your life, you pull it out, hold it, look at it, then gently wrap it back up and put it away. It took me a good ten years before I didn't think of him frequently and hope, somehow...but I never saw him again.

And so life goes on. I met the love of my life years later, the one who is still the most wonderful man I've ever known and that love and this love are worlds apart and incomparable. He too found strong lasting love and was blessed with beautiful children and more recently a grandchild.

Today I was forced to pull the memory, the souvenirs of that time we had 20 years ago from its special place, each of them tumbled out one by one from their hiding place, when the news reached me that Ed had been killed. He was driving on his motorcycle, my bad boy to the end, to Grand Falls(the same trip he was to take the last time I saw him) when he was killed.

I always thought I would see him again on this earth even if just for a brief moment. I picture the young man he was, handsome, funny, tanned, lean, the sparkle of the demon in his eyes, a grin that said "anything goes, anytime!" I would have loved to have seen the man he had become, mellower maybe, grey at the temples perhaps, but with the same sparkle and same grin. My cousin saw him last year and said he looked older but was the same old Ed. How was it that when she said to me "I have some bad news" Ed was the first person who popped into my head, and I knew?

And now I get to spend time with the memories. They keep coming, vivid and unbidden, a lot of living can be packed into a few short weeks with one such as my bad boy! I see the jeans he wore, they looked good, I remember the skirt he liked me to wear, how he loved my legs(apparantly they were magnificent back then lol) and I go back to our place, a rickety abandoned tree house and it's empty and I sit there alone in my mind. But he's welcome, the incredible spirit he is, to visit and sit awhile. I'm going to miss knowing he's somewhere sharing this great earth with me. I'm sad for the family who loved him most, his wife, his children and his mother who treasured him above all others. God Speed love. Heaven is in for one helluva shake up!




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I'm High!


I'm high. I've been singing and dancing around all morning. What a feeling. To have a dream, to have an idea, to take the steps to make the dream come true and then to see it realised, to have it come to fruition! No wine impaired brain ever felt this good, no narcotic stupor ever satisfied this much. That's what happened last night. It was the night of my movie screening and it was wonderful! You can read about it here

Drugs are simply not necessary in a life lived from the centre outward. I sent the idea out to the universe and then I let it go, then I took a few steps towards it, let that go, when people didn't email back right away, I let that go as well and eventually, all of the right people did show up, all of the things I needed came to me and the night unfolded exactly as it was supposed to, serving the exact purpose I intended. To allow wonderful, busy women, to focus on themselves outside of their roles as mothers. And they all did, they all could relate and could share the shift they had experienced or were experiencing now. All were mothers but first and foremost all were divine goddesses with exceptional journeys and brilliant insight. I was truly blessed to be with them. I am forever grateful for their presence in my life at that moment.

We had a beautiful evening in beautiful surroundings provided by my new friend, Dr. Tanya Chambers. Including her, 6 of the most accomplished and interesting women I know gathered with me to watch the movie. As I sat there, I became aware of a complete feeling of peace and joy, knowing, I did it. And this, being proof of the fact that I can do anything, is the first in a long line of things I will do from this place. I hope that the attendees enjoyed their night as much as I did. I am celebrating. I want to do it again tonight. I wonder, our town is getting a new public library(I'm so excited about this!)if they would like to host a movie screening as a fundraiser. The ideas are coming fast and furious! (Breeze gently reigns herself in from the path of digression).

There is no greater reward than to follow a dream, do the work and realise it as reality. No matter how small or large(and there really are no small dreams) all are possible with work, trust in yourself and trust in the greater good. Do it to serve others and you will serve yourself, there is no escaping this universal truth!

So, yeah I'm high, but without drug or alcohol(though there may be a Guinness or two in my day at some point, it is Saturday and we have a neighbourhood barbecue later) but I doubt even Arthur Guinness himself experienced such drunken joy as I feel right now!

Get out there, live your passion, take the single step that begins the long journey. Now I have to pick up the pen. I think there is writer's cramp in my future. I can do anything on this natural stimulant including several more chapters of my book!

Namaste friends!




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Ocean Rescue

How is it no camera's eye
can do justice to your briney blue?
no painter's brush can stroke the colours
that pay honest homage to your saline hue

Impotent words fall from the scribe
inadequate truth of the impression
No words of rapture,awe and wonder
no syllabus outlines such a lesson

Standing on your battered brink
I'm rescued from the silly notion
that we the egocentric mortal
can elucidate the transcendent ocean







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Friday, June 5, 2009

Today is Real!

This morning is real. Today the sun shines brighter than it has in a while, today I sat with my mind in silence and was still. After 4 hours of walking around Toronto Zoo yesterday, feeling sad for the gorillas, fascinated by the velvety texture of the stingrays, marvelling in the fact that I can, indeed, walk again, I am glad to immerse myself in this day of normal things. Normal for me always includes meditation and silent time.

I take my daughter to school as the rest of the house sleeps and then take my little dog into the backyard, smiling at the shock of the wet, dew-drenched grass on my sandalled feet. Nature always brings me back with a shake of her finger and says "be still in me" and I invariable listen.

When morning breaks with a bright warm sun on your face and happy wet dew on the grass and you are out there, in it, being at one with the gifts of the earth, that is when you know, this day is real and it is yours.

Tonight I am hosting the first event of my Other Than Mother initiative. It will be a small group of women, some have had to cancel due to childcare issues, so we are looking at maybe 5 women. I had hoped for around 10. Yet somehow I am incapable of being disappointed in the small turnout. I look forward to the movie, The Shift, I look forward to a few cookies and tea and mostly I look forward to conversations from incredibly brilliant and successful women whose lives have been an inspiration to me. Quality over quantity is always a success.

Once the movie screening is done, it is my intention to lend this movie to anyone who wanted to attend but couldn't make it. I believe in the message of this movie so deeply.

This day is real. From the first tread mark in dew covered grass to the poetry that is swirling around in my mind, words, thoughts, ideas, tapping impatiently as I carry on in my day to day tasks. They can wait, I've learned to trust that the good ones, the authentic words, stay until I am ready to allow them to come through my fingertips to the page.

But meanwhile, I am here, I am ready, I am real.

Namaste





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Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Balance

Leaning over the banister
poised to say good morning
she witnesses a miracle
a moment without warning

They flit around without her
independent in their movements
she watches wondering when they started
making such improvements

She backs away quietly
they really don't notice
ignoring mess and different ways
the mother changes focus

She slips into a different role
today she'll let them be
and let them make the mess they make
as they set their mother free

Perfection serves no purpose
the martyr ends up dead
loosen up the rigid rules
let them practice life instead

Mother free yourself from guilt
take time to live and be
you serve no one completely
unless you let yourself be free




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Monday, June 1, 2009

Sitting in Patience


The sun has left sparkling light pepper dancing in front of my window. The cat has placed herself squarely in the rays, soaking up sunshine as only a cat can do. What is it about cats and sunlight? The deck is cold cement except for the area where the rays touch and warm the edge of it and there the brown tortoiseshell lies, sleeping in feline contentedness, moving only when the sun shifts, then with yawn and stretch, takes herself a few inches to the right, returning to her lazy slumber to dream of nocturnal hunts and can openers.

Today is a practice in patience for me. Off goes my visiting sister for a morning run and here I sit in envy wishing I could dash off with her and enjoy some physical activity. Here I am, still nursing an injured foot, hoping that in another week I'll be able to have full function back again in record time. The crutches have gone at least, after two days of struggling with them and figuring them out I finally conceded that I would likely do worse injury by using them and retired them to a corner and sat in a chair reading and icing and accepting that my mobility would be limited for a while.

Over a week now and not completely healed. Likely without visitors and barbecues and large family gatherings I hosted on the weekend I might be further ahead in my convalescence but I forged ahead with my plans, accepted all of the help that was offered and enjoyed a wonderful weekend with friends and family. My throbbing foot reminded me after that I need to rest now and so I have been. Hence my absence at my desk and on this blog.

Patience. That is what I am cultivating now. Waiting for emails about my ticket sales, waiting for my foot to heal, waiting for my life to get back to the way it was before I hurt myself.

We take so much for granted. I live mostly a peaceful life, quiet and boring by most standards, satisfying and fulfilling by mine and when it is interrupted by injury or illness or visitors it provides an opportunity to practice the virtues I contemplate during the quiet times. Today is better than yesterday and healing is happening daily. I am grateful for that.

I apologise for being absent but plan to return in due time to write and read and comment. Life is transient and dynamic, things will come along to change your plans regularly, the ability to wait it out, to go with it, to adjust is key to contentment.

Namaste





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