Saturday, September 23, 2017

Journey to Acceptance, Self-Compassion and Love

Sometimes I think we are just too smart for our own good.  We look out at life and see the ripples and waves of complexity...we go frantically in search of this thing or that thing that we think will bring us that sense of peace, wholeness and contentment.  But, what if you knew that kind of quest would only ever be fruitless if searching outside yourselves?  What would you do then?

Do you think that in such times, the tiny little aches from within your own heart might seem like a bit more than just the echoes and tingles of past pain or your own seeming failures?  What are your regrets?  Did you know that these things....these things we try so very hard not to think about are THE very things begging you for greater understanding?  Holding these as uninvestigated nagging little somethings without our concerted attention, creates only fear, self-loathing and disease or discomfort?  We don't need pills, a bottle, busy work or hobbies to stave off the pain.  What we need is love...a big dose of healthy self-love, compassion, connectedness and understanding.

The world will give us nothing but more reminders of those tiny little nagging cracks in the core of our hearts.  As much as it might seem so, this is not cruel.  It is by design.  These are not horrible moods or emotions but messengers of hope, faith and love.  How on Earth could this possibly be?- You might think.  Truly, however, it is only a slight shift in understanding that could make this a little easier to grasp.  Within you is a limitless store of magic, untapped-energy, light, love and gratitude.  All that prevents your awareness or awakening to your own inner divine truth is the fear to investigate that which nags you to your core. 

To get to the bottom of these nagging little fears and pains you must realize that it is wholly unnecessary to root out all possible causes or other-worldly seeming origins.  Sometimes, all that is needed is your full awareness and presence of these little nagging urgings into fear or anger or some other uncomfortable emotion.  Sometimes, simply acknowledging their existence while breathing with intent into a moment and showing yourself great compassion, understanding and gentleness is all that is necessary.  Imagine talking to yourself with gentleness as you would a young child in need of wise counsel.

You have walked so many miles on your path.  You have covered great distances.  You have learned awesome, important and amazing things.  You have accomplished so much in your journeying.  Relax into this awareness and breathe deep within your core the gentleness of a single ray of glorious sunlight, a cool and gentle breeze, or the beautiful and powerful music of wind rustling in glorious is much more simple than you can imagine.

Relax you, your resistance and move into peace.  Flow like a stream as your truest intuition guides you, follow the true calling of your hearts and feel the blessings therein.  They are many and of infinite value just awaiting your discovery.  Know that you can heal through living with the greatest integrity towards self.  You can achieve greater contentment not through things or striving to be better than anyone else but through connecting with your presence and through your presence, the Spirit of  nature and the All of Everything.  It is not so complex.  Intent is all that is needed.  Willingness to explore is all that is needed.  Faith is a must...a true faith in yourselves and your own energy to begin.  So, just begin.

May your God or Goddess bless and carry you ever more fully into your trues core life purpose with every breath and step.  Feel for the truth of you, breathe through the essence of you and through that essence, the connected consciousness of everything.

© 2017, Jaie Hart (photo/words)

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Observation of the Breath - A Gift

The Birds are beginning to stir as my little coffee pot finishes its fine brew.  It has been a rough week but beautiful too.  Strange happenings in the world this week have my mind and energy stretched out far and wide.  To all who suffer, I pray for comfort and peace.  To all who feel lost, I pray for the deepest feeling of home and love.  For all those worried and in mourning, I send great gentleness and even more love.  For all those out there trying to make this world a better place, ROCK ON!  You got this!  We’ve all got this, really.

I’ve thrown all the windows open to let in the breeze, as slight as it may be.  I’ve a full day of things to do and places to be.  My mind has been stirred so much these last few days, sleep hardly greeted me at all last night.  The coffee seems exceptionally good just now.  My last post was very sad so I really felt I wanted to post something a little bit lighter.  I just don’t know if I can deliver.  I try.  I always try.

Were it not for the kindness of complete strangers this week, I probably would have been a total wreck.  Dealing with loss is never easy, even when you know in your heart that those loved ones who leave us go to a better place.  The energetic void of their non-physical presence is very real to a grieving heart.  But so is the very real presence of hope, acceptance, perseverance and love.  I have all of these things and employ them to help me through a challenging time.

Grief is not so terrible a thing.  It just seems like it at first.  As I sit here quietly thinking this morning I realize the beauty of the feeling that underlies the grief.  It is overwhelming at times only due to the overwhelming love shared for a time.  That is not horrible.  It is so very beautiful.  Each wave of heaviness that makes its way towards me, I let crash directly into me.  I hold no fear for grief and mourning.  I hold steady knowing the truth of this delicate and gentle time. 

Grief, you must know, can take physical form in aches, pains and severely lacking sleep.  This is okay.  It is just part of the process.  We breathe with more purpose in the dark seeming times.  Each breath serves a greater purpose when you are dealing with loss.  With great mindful presence can you withstand the waves of heaviness and the winds of change you must now contend with.  What begins will end and it is only a matter of time.  Feeling the emotion is hard and scary but less so if you don’t let that fear begin to control the process.  It seems only natural to contend also with fear…how will I ever get through this?  We might begin to think at times.  But, you do get through it…one breath and one step at a time and often with many pauses along the way to lean towards your memories.  I smile today with memories of happier times, sweet and gentle times.  I am not discouraged by loss.  I am encouraged by the love I still and always feel.  Maybe that gets me through.  Maybe it is truly the strongest faith I have In myself and my Maker to help get me through this and I will get through this.

My thoughts localize and I take a sip of my coffee.  In the distance I hear the cars passing on the freeway and the birds slowly preparing for the day.  Its dark still this morning and I can hear someone’s alarm going off in the distance.  I just wish them well.  I hear the leaves moving ever so slowly in the trees outside of my window now and then when a gentle sea breeze lifts them up.  I hear the whir and whine of my neighbor’s air conditioner and my coffee pot clicking as it stays warm on the burner.

Today I collect the ashes of my beloved little friend.  I won’t lie and say that doesn’t hurt but my mind is now ready to embrace any emotion because I know I can breathe, I know I can move and I know I can master this part of the process no matter how hard it may be for me.  Today I have hope and faith and I know that I can smile and laugh.  I can give comfort to others and share whatever it is I can to lend a little gentleness to their day.  There is a shift inside when we are dealing with loss.  The little cracks and fissures that seem to grow within our hearts isn’t just the heart breaking.  It is also a beautiful opening.  I intend to let that continue every day.  Every day. 

In a miserable tearful moment this week, I asked for a sign that my little friend was okay and do you know what I got?  The sign.  It came and it is too personal and precious to share but my heart hurts a little less today and I’m really grateful.  I can do this today – this life, these tasks and things.  I will treat myself later to a massage to help ease all the places the grief has temporarily stored itself and I will breathe in every beautiful ray of sunlight with a heart-felt smile today if for no other reason than that is just what I do. 

Whenever it feels like the pain is pulling all hope away from you, stop, take a breath and maybe another and another.  Slowly center your thoughts on your breathing.  Slowly center your thoughts on each sound you hear.  Notice your emotions swirling but don’t give them an ounce more importance than your breath.  Stay focused in these moments for just a few minutes.  Realize you are not your grieving and are certainly not your pain.  These are just parts of an experience you are witnessing in your life.  Observe the experience, feel the experience and just breathe.  For any of you grieving I pray you are enfolded in gentleness and wrapped in love and sweetness.  Consider ways you can bring yourself more of this energy.  You will get through this best by getting through this.  If you are a friend of someone suffering loss, give to them gentleness, presence if they want it and comfort if they need it.  Keep following up. It is a gift to be that light for someone walking through a dark part of their life journey.   

May you be comforted, may you be blessed.

© 2017, Jaie Hart (photo/words)

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Walking You Home

Written September 5, 2017:
My heart is so heavy it feels as if it cannot bear even the tiniest increment more of this pain.  Grief is a process and mine has only just begun.  I lost a very dear friend today.  I didn’t lose him in the usual way.  He got sick.  He was not going to get better and so I had to compassionately release him.  It happened so quick and he was gone.  For almost 14 years of my life he was there for me every single day.  He was sweet, so very sweet.  Every morning he would greet me as I went down stairs to make my coffee.  He used to wait at my door but as the years went by, he stopped hopping up the stairs like he used to.  He would hear me on the stairs and start meowing.  We would talk while I made coffee and got him his breakfast.  So much have we been through, he and I. 

He was the most beautiful and majestic kitty I have ever seen.  His sweetness was beyond anything I’ve ever known in a furry friend.  I remember the day we brought him home.  He was so tiny that he fit in the palm of my hand.  He was so beautiful, long black fur, and those huge yellow eyes.  My youngest daughter was only 1 and over the years, they became best friends.  I used to love to watch the love that they shared.  It made me smile from the center of my heart.  It was just simply beyond beautiful.  I'd honestly say it was truly extraordinary.

Today was beautiful too.  We brought him home from the ER having already gotten the news he would never recover.  I made a tough call because I loved him so much and just could not bear for him to experience any more pain, no more stress of vet visits and finally be at peace.  We all had the afternoon off to spend with our little family friend.  We played, as much as he could.  We loved as much as he would let us.  We gave him his favorite treats. We each sat with him and stroked his still so very beautiful, long black fur.  For brief moments, all seemed normal even though there was a heaviness in the air.  The clock ticked quickly and the hour came.  The hour came...

We drove to our wonderful vet.  They explained what would happen and we braced for it and it happened lightening fast.  So fast that if you blinked, you’d have missed it.  His spirit was gone soaring.  Our hearts broke and broke and broke. They break still.  We reached a point where there would be no more thinking about the tomorrows.  He was where he was, sick, deteriorating and sometimes the most  compassionate and loving thing you can do is let go.  So, we let go.  And now, now there is grief and wishing it hadn’t happened but knowing it did, it has and we can’t go back.  We have to cry, mourn and face the empty space in our lives he left us with.  He was so sweet.  His energy of just being there was so precious to me.  I’m so very grateful for my little friend.  It might seem silly to feel so much for a cat.  But he was not just a cat.  He was my friend, a true and good one.  He was the littlest member of our family and we just loved him so.

He brought so much to our lives in the simple things, with his constant presence and the joy and laughter he seemed to often inspire in all of us.   I am so very grateful that he was part of our lives for as long as he was.  Our little furry friends can be so very special in our lives.  We mourn because we loved and that can never be wrong.  I hurt and I hurt a lot but you know what?  I wouldn’t change it.  I wouldn’t change knowing him or any day that I had with him in my life.  The memories of him, we will always treasure and today?  Well, we got through it as a family.  As hard as it was on each of us, we walked our little friend home with love, with dignity and with great appreciation for all that he gave us.  Good bye Zacky Midnight, my little special friend.  I pray God has the most special place for you in Heaven.  You deserve that and so much more.  We love you and miss you.

Hold your fur babies close and love without any fear.  Sometimes life is great joy and sometimes too, great sadness.  The point is to love.  The point is to experience.  The point is to share.  Our little fur babies share so much with their sweet innocence and never ending love.  They are truly treasures.  If you are grieving the loss of a family pet, my heart goes out to you.  I know your pain and I know that pain means you loved and were loved by a precious little fur baby.  Even if it doesn't last forever, the love never dies.  It just never dies.  May your God or Goddess be with you and your fur babies no matter whether they are here or happily and patiently waiting for you somewhere near the Rainbow Bridge.