gratitude

Gratitude Brought Me to My Knees

There are moments in life that stand out. Often we move through each day, without any moments truly impacting us, but those that do, help shape us into who we are. I am realizing that most often than not, what we remember in days, weeks, years, is love. I’m not talking solely romantic love, although that surely impacts us beyond measure. But just love in general. It is what people sing about, write about, and turn their worlds upside down, inside out and right side in about.

What brought me to laugh, then to tears and then to my knees tonight was a dear friend’s text to me. This is what she said, “you have no idea how powerful you really are. I dreamt it. You’re observing me coming into my power and you want it too. And as much as I want to give up sometimes, I can’t. Because you are watching. And you are going to be big.” Holy shit balls! That literally stopped me in my tracks, kale in hand at the cutting board. (Yes, I do stop to read texts while cooking….multitasking Mama.) I laughed out loud and then immediately started to cry. A lot. Because I know it’s true and she gave it to me from such a real, loving place.  All of it is real. My observing this powerful woman who was sent to me through yoga, self expansion, truth and in a time when I needed to expand the sisterhood. My knowingness about my untapped power that I am reaching for like a leaf stretching toward the sunlight. But in the same breath of reaching, I am learning to surrender to the opening. To not reaching. To being in the present moment. To sitting in the grit and the discomfort that growth brings. Lately this has meant a lot of crying in public, humbling to say the least. Letting my emotions go. Moving through them. Not running or searching for the next thing to fill the void!

Right now I am just trying to love myself. In a way that I never have before. To sit with what is, being ok with being in the divine storm. For the first time since I can remember, I am alone. Meaning without a partner, spouse, male counterpart in crime. Moving into this space has been startling and terrifying. I crave partnership. I want a teammate. I am a hopeless romantic! But the beauty in being alone, without trying to fill the void, is that I am realizing, I can depend on ME. Self love is true expansion.

Although I believe we all have the capacity to continuously give love, even when we feel we have nothing left in the reserves; self love enables us to reach a higher level of giving and receiving. Which brings to mind the saying “you can’t truly love another until you love yourself”. Yes and no. We all have the capacity to love all the time. But without self love we build a wall around all of the hurt. We close ourselves off to feeling, giving and experiencing connection with other human beings as a self protective mechanism. The synonyms to protection are: barrier, buffer, shield, armor. Can we really let love in if we are self protecting? If we choose to love ourselves deeply and fully, we can also practice non attachment. Meaning, if and when we find ourselves alone….we are still ok! Of course we process the hurt of the loss, sit with it, feel it for as long as we need to, but we also are able to pull ourselves up by the bootstraps knowing that we can keep going. Because we have all that we need within ourselves. And what we need to learn outside of ourselves, is reflected back to us by those around us, if we just let the love in-stay open-and be present.

What is truly resonating with me right now is from Danielle Laporte’s book The Desire Map. In it she writes:

“Decide to rise.

Lean in. Listen up. Closely.

It’s your soul speaking, and she says,

Get UP!

I need you.

I want you.

I am you.

Choose me.

Lean in.

Listen Closely.

Decide to rise.”

With each moment I am doing my best to decide to rise. To rise through the hurt, the loss of a marriage, the BIG job of raising two spirited little girls who help me rise very day, the beginning again, the being vulnerable and the being blissfully alone. And I do so with immense gratitude for so many amazing, powerful, awe inspiring women by my side who truly LOVE me and encourage me to shine in those moments when all I can see and feel are clouds.