Have you ever screwed up?
Yes, that was sort of a rhetorical question, because of course you have. Me to.
What did you do about it?
-swallow your pride and own it?
-Agonize about it for weeks?
-Obsess and constantly remind yourself of your short comings?
-Finally let it go?
I do all the above and eventually end up at my mat, on my knees praying for release, and guidance. The pressure releases when I do, when I surrender and give up control.
My mat never fails to not be my best friend and confidant.
It says, “its okay, let it go You don’t need a big announcement. You don’t owe anyone an explanation. Just surrender and peace will come.”
Breathe in. Breathe out.
And so it is.
It doesn’t matter what its about. It doesn’t matter how many times the same situation occurs or bothers you. Quietness and space is always the solution. So find a few minutes and let them be empty and quiet. Expand them with breath and forgiveness and love.
Sunday. My favourite. Oh how I wait for you to come every week. To snuggle up within knits and socks and duvets. To drink cup after cup of tea. Taste freshly made muffins. Cocoon myself in blankets, quiet cartoons and the tap of the rain against the windows, lulling us adults off to sleep.
Sunday holds so much space for me. It is that constant companion awaiting me after a long week. This one, full of zinging saws, renovation materials, sawdust, sandwiches, Budweiser, sunburns, suntans, sunscreen, aloe, headaches, mistakes, halfassed suppers, falling into bed with exhaustion, beeping of coffee machines, early sunshine finding the breaks in the blinds, little cold feet pressed against your side, pillows over faces blocking out the sound, the light…just…five..more…minutes.
And now rain. Lots of it, streaking diagonally across the sky in a thick sheet. A reprieve from the heat, the wildfires, the irritability that seems to come with the relentless temperatures…There has been no cabin fever here. Just calm among the diffused lavender, makeshift sheet tents, paint projects, movies, chippies and veggie platters, indie music, pirouetting Faerie Girl, so much space made. Our hearts have grown, filling, expanding, taking in one another, getting to know one another once again.
This…This is why I love Sunday.
My daughter lost her beloved Bwanket (Blanket) this weekend. We didn’t realize until we were already on our way home that it was missing. She was falling asleep in the truck, chilled from the air conditioning, eyes heavy from all the walking and excitement the city has to offer. She whined to me, eyes closed, lips downturned in a pout, “mummy, I want my….Bwanket!” she managed the last word with a bit of drama.
I flipped around in my seat and began scouring the back of the truck with my eyes. It wasn’t there. In fact, I hadn’t remember seeing it since we were out walking in the middle of a city through a residential section. Why were we there? For a community garage sale. It was my husband’s idea, one that I was reluctant to agree on (I had had other plans) but sometimes you just do things for your spouse when you see that look in their eye saying “I really want you to come.” We went, it was a disaster (two kids yard-saleing, HELLO) but there is where I will leave it, because what is done is done.
I semi predicted the disaster awaiting us, but I could never have predicted the loss of Bwanket. You see, when you become a parent and your child chooses a Lovey, you protect that Lovey with your life. You do not leave home without it. You do not leave your location without double checkin, triple checking it’s availability. If it is not in their hand it is within your reach. AT. ALL. TIMES. It is the Ultimate Pacifier.
She fell asleep in the truck fine without it as I frantically ripped apart bags and any compartment, looking for it even though I knew it wasn’t in there. I felt sick. It was gone. I even found one on Ebay and scooped it up before we were home because I felt so awful. I knew she wouldn’t want it, because it wasn’t HER blanket. Hell, I didn’t even want it. Ebay Blanket hadn’t gotten puked on in Costa Rica because she was carsick. Ebay Blanket didn’t know her newborn smell. It wasn’t there for sleep training, Saturday morning cartoons, airport layovers, sick days, weekend trips and hotel stays and picnics. I couldn’t help but cling to the idea that the fabric somehow held those memories and without it I would lose them. Without it, Mila was somehow less like Mila.
Mila is my tough, live-in-the-moment girl. She is like a little Faerie, she doesn’t walk, she dances on her tip toes everywhere she goes. When things happen it’s like water off a ducks back, nothing seems to affect her. She rarely pouts for more than a minute. She’s never butt hurt, she doesn’t hold grudges and she doesn’t compromise who she is because someone didn’t like it. She is so far into the moment I am inspired by her. So when I explained to her Bwanket was gone, she frowned and looked down at her hands and slowly said “okaaaaay…” took a deep breath as if digesting this horrible information and went back to playing. At bedtime she reiterated she knew Bwanket was gone but that we would find it soon. She didn’t even cry until day two. And I was crushed even more over that.
Didn’t she miss it? Didn’t she need it? Or was I the one who needed it more than her? Was I the only one who associated its presence with her identity?
I think we do that with most material possessions and that is why they are almost a bit of a poison to us. We associate them with our worth and self image, without realizing thats not our True Self at all. It feels like our true self, despite it really only being our Ego. Our True Selves do not need possessions, labels, images or judgments. Our True Self does not desire for more, or cling to past events as fundamentals of our identity. Our Ego does.
Despite all of this I still went to the ends of the earth for find Bwanket. I looked because I still believe in treasuring some things. I think its healthy to surround yourself with things that truly make you happy, and Bwanket most definitely made the cut. I knew possibly where it was, but I was no where near the city to go and look, so I took to Facebook for help. By the evening, after many shares and posts to additional Facebook pages, it was found.
I felt utter relief and joy that it had been located. I snuck into Mila’s room and told her the good news and her face lighting up made my life. That blanket sparks absolute joy in that girl, and while the reminder that possessions can at times be a burden if they cement you into a box of self-imagery or the past; when something sparks joy, it should ultimately be loved and kept and treasured.
Bwanket is home now. Safe and sound in her arms. Mila was beyond thrilled, and me? Well you could say I was over the moon too.
For much of my adolescence I was terribly depressed and a complete pessimist. I was terribly lonely, and I always was looking for something to make me happy instead of looking for it within myself. If I could meet with my younger self I would wrap my arms around her. I’d hug her until she knew her worth and this is what I’d say.
Happiness is not dependant on circumstance and doesn’t come from anyone and anything. It comes from within you. Happiness is a choice you make.
Things will get infinitely better. Trouble comes in waves, just ride out the tough times and better days will come.
Don’t stop exercising. Eat to nourish and treat your body like a temple.
Listen to your mom. Seriously.
Save your f*cking money.
Learn to be alone. Love yourself. Love your solitude. Being able to be happy alone is an empowering skill.
Don’t be such a tight wad. Let loose a little. Don’t be so serious all the time.
Go travel. Preferably alone.
Be more positive.
Don’t let fear dictate your life and your decisions.
Equally, don’t let others’ opinions dictate your life and your decisions
Do not harm, but take no shit. (I will admit I was rather good at the latter, but its a good reminder, nonetheless.)
Compassion is always the right response in any situation.
How people treat you is their karma, not yours. How you respond is your karma. So do so compassionately.
Trust that the Universe has a plan for you. Trust that life happens for you. Not to you.
Love yourself. Love yourself. Love yourself.
I hope this finds you safe and well. And if it finds you feeling melancholic, I hope this provides you some refuge. Know that, whoever you are Dear Reader, wherever you are, you are exactly where you should be, at exactly the right time, just the way you are.
I’ve been a bit absent here, for that I apologize. Everyday I think about writing and photo taking and story telling. I joke its become my cheap therapy, but really that is no joke. I love this little corner of the Internet I designed and am building all myself. I love it, yet sometimes I get tired of all the things that go with it; social media, the non-stop creativity thats required that I still cannot seem to find the tap for…the disappointment I try not to let creep in when my expectations are not meeting with reality.
This and the regular day to day activity of motherhood and housekeeping and overall an energetic overload caused a bit of a burnout in me. I’ve spent most of this week just resting at home with the children. We tinkered in the garden today, we’ve been earthing and crystal cleansing in the sunshine. I got back on my mat today, cleansed my meditation space, set my new moon intentions and immediately felt better. Coming back to the mat is a bit like muscle memory involved with picking up an old activity. Things are a bit rusty at first, a bit mechanical. Then all the moments I spent doing it come rushing back, the movements come with ease. Then I question why I ever stopped in the first place if it feels this damn good.
That question can be left unanswered though, because it doesn’t matter why I stopped, it only matters that I decided to begin again. It doesn’t matter that I pushed myself too far, gave too much without enough self-care; it only matters that I am taking the time out for myself now.
What do you do when you feel burnt out, or like you’ve given too much? Is there something you do that fills your cup, resets and recharges you for the next day? I’d love to hear what you do.
Sending love and light and relaxing vibes to you dear reader.