It’s three o’clock on a normal Friday afternoon. In between my children’s giggles, I look at my phone and there’s a message from my stepdaughter’s school saying they were in lockdown following police orders due to a shooting in the city.
What lights me up? I grappled with this question for a few years before I started getting clear answers.
And It’s a very important one.
Not asking it for a long time led me away from my creativity and made me forget all the things that bring me joy.
At different times in my life, I’ve felt like I’ve been carrying the weight of the world on my shoulders.
This weight, made up of heavy past, disappointments, unfulfilled dreams and brokenness has visited me in different layers over the years, each time begging me to set myself free a little more.
Maria Vlachou is an amazing, passionate woman with whom I’ve had the privilege of working and sharing a friendship for a decade and a half.
She was one of my first mentors when I lived in Portugal and she made a profound impact in my life, both professionally and personally, as an example of the mark a fully-expressed woman can make in the world.
My gentleness flows
Whether my anger knows it or not
Buried under the blurry thoughts
Running a mile an hour in my head.
I know. I know. I know.
Even when confusion seems to be the only thing I’m clear about
Until I remember where to look.
I get stuck in a dance between my past and the next step forward.
Between my brilliance and my darkest shadow. Looking outward,
knees-deep in muddy waters
Desperately hoping someone else shows me the way out.
But the compass keeps pointing at me
I look around, there’s nobody else.
Just me, my angst and my magic, sitting beside each other.
I pause, tune into the silence, look at the water
Feel the warmth of my knowing in my heart.
It’s there, it’s always there.
Welcome home, I hear.
I am the path, the walker and the destination.
I remember. I forget. I remember.
I close my eyes and I’m home again.
I’ve grappled with the true meaning of forgiveness for a long time.
The truth is, in my 35 years of life, I’ve rarely been in a situation where I’ve had to learn. Or at least that’s what I thought…
I am not this glorious shell
I move graciously in
This skin that protects me sheds
as I walk through life – I have many.
Very few things suck the joy out of life like our slavery to perfection.
On the surface, perfection seems like a good thing, right? Surely, people with high standards achieve more and make the world a better place.
Even if it were so (I argue it’s not), there’s a steep cost for chasing perfection.
How often do we allow ourselves to go into deep freeze? A hibernation of sorts to re-group, re-gather and charge up?
Certainly NOT Me. I’m a “doer” and I’ve fallen into the trap of glorifying it.
I decided a while ago not to watch the news. If something was important enough for me to know about, I’d find out about it through my circles, or casual circumstances.
I carefully sifted through my social media feeds, email subscriptions, apps and everything in my environment to weed out the mainstream, mostly negative, stories that violated my mind and heart (with my permission) daily.