I have made three attempts over the past week to come back into blogging. Each time, I have opened up my laptop only to find myself at a major loss for words. In the past, all I have ever needed for writing inspiration were my photos. They fed me and my soul so to speak, they filled my mind up with thoughts with which I transformed into words, but this time my photos merely confuse me. In my photos are small bits and pieces of my world, right here, right now. Bits and pieces that are beautiful; bits and pieces that I feel completely blessed to be able to witness; bits and pieces that are part of my and only my world. The past 10 months have been full of amazing and magical happenings that were born from what my family and I created simply by being who we are. At the same time, however, life was teeming with confusion and chaos and suffering. Regardless of how red the roses may or may not have appeared to any one person, both realities were in existence full tilt. Yet, I am not one to complain and don’t really aspire to write a blog about how cruel life can feel at times. Instead I try to make the best of it.
So as I sit here, and look closely at my photos that shine nothing short of complete and perfect beauty, my heart still sags, in a way where I feel if I post photos with beautiful wise words of inspiration to go along with them…I may give the impression to someone out there that my life is good, that everything is fine, perfect even, when really it feels quite the opposite. Even if my main purpose of posting those words…is for myself to see that even though my heart is heavy I must go on. Even if my main purpose is to remind myself that there is so much more to life right now than “my dilemmas”, aka. the nitty gritty of life and my existence amidst it all. Even if my main purpose is to capture all the good that fills our days, amidst the not so good, so that when all is quiet I can look back and see it all just a bit more clearly. I feel that if I do decide to post without detailed explanation
someone out there may choose to see berry bushes covered in gazillions of berries when there is barely a handful; someone may choose to see a thousand canned sauerkraut on my table when I take a close up picture because I like to fill the frames of my photos; someone might choose to see a beautifully laid out market stand (thinking it must have made a lot of money) that only had two customers; someone may choose to see the wealth of what I chose to see in life and decide to judge me for it; someone may see one lucky girl living in an old farmhouse with all her dreams coming true, regardless of knowing we have to move again in a year, despite the fact that we are struggling on many different levels right now for a number of different reasons.
Throughout my years of blogging I have learned though, that these occurrences/judgments/accusations are merely a reflection…of not me…but of others and their own mind’s rationalizing. The important lessons within that (along with much of life) is letting others judge as they want and learning to walk away unscathed. Exposing oneself to the great wide abyss of the internet through blogging comes twofold, I know this. There is striving for connection, community, and focusing on personal growth; there is also the space within that which opens up for allowing oneself to be judged for what you say, how you say it, when you say it, what you wear, how many kids you have, what toys you have in your house…yadda yadda yadda. The list goes on. And then comes a time when you cave, the blogger begins to die, because it just becomes too much to bear, and there’s not much else you can put out there without someone reading so far into it that it hurts, as it is not what you meant. Little by little there are fewer words shared out of fear that someone will call you out on how you choose to home school, what reading level your children are at, how much you do or don’t spend on groceries every month.
OR, OR OR OR, you chose to push on…and shine your light and share yourself as you are, as bright as you can, for the shear sake of your own personal passion in doing so, disregarding any false judgement that gets thrown on your doorstep. We will never have control over how someone else acts or talks or chooses to take away from what we offer. What we will always have control over is how we choose to let the actions of others affect us and our ability to let it go and continue on our journey.
We all have the freedom to see what we want to see. This can be applied to our everyday personal lives, in the spacing of a photograph, or in the lives of those around us, whether that is on or offline. I like to call this concept shaping our reality. 2012 has felt like one giant and very drastic emotional roller coaster for me. One day I’ve got a huge plan and I’m excited about the endless opportunities it could bring. The next day something (or someone) rains on my parade…one thing or another, preventing me from taking the next step putting me in the deepest trenches of blahville.
One thing I do know, is that I have a gift, the gift of seeing (and believing) my truth. Even in the worst of the worst I can always see something in my life to be grateful for. I always thought it was a just a skill I obtained somewhere along the line, but lately I am understanding that it comes so naturally to me, that I think it is actually a gift. It is indeed part of my own personal passion…and quite possibly one of the biggest reasons I blog. Just because I choose to post nice pictures and words doesn’t mean my life is going as planned. It just simply is a reflection of how I am trying to do and be the very best that I can with what I’ve got. I will push on. I will achieve what I want when I want. I will be creative in how I shape my reality. I will remind myself that life is good no matter what. I will defeat the odds. And I want to be able to share that. To give others hope that they can too…in their own ways of course.
I guess if I think about it I’d rather live my life with an open heart with the chance of getting hurt opposed to living with a closed heart for fear of being hurt and missing out on opportunities for growth. A friend of mine was talking about the author Paul Ferrini the other day. Ironically, I have one of his books, the ecstatic moment, from years ago, so I went and got it off the book shelf after our telephone conversation, because that’s how my life works. On some of the first pages it says,
“In the ecstatic moment you recognize your spiritual perfection and that of all beings. Perfection is never about the past or the future. It is always about now. You are perfect right now, regardless of all your perceived problems or unfinished business. You are acceptable as you are, no matter how many mistakes you think you have made. There is nothing you have thought, felt, or done that prevents you from realizing your perfection here and now.
All suffering results from your refusal to accept and bless your life just the way it is, from your insecure need to try to fix yourself, your relationships and the world you live in. When you stop finding fault with your life and trying to fix it, you can be in it more fully. Then, your life has energy, purpose and integrity. There is nothing lacking, nothing insufficient, nothing broken. It is perfect just as it is.”
That’s it. And that’s why I write and blog. I figure things out about myself. My house is very dusty. Sometimes I am still in pajamas at lunchtime. I don’t always know if everyone has brushed their teeth in the morning or not. My kids do worksheets. I have clutter. Our life is chaotic. I let my kids watch movies. I dream big despite getting very far at times. We have a lot of library fines. We are very “poor” financially, but “rich” in family. We fight and argue. We have our issues. In the end we are who we are…and that’s a blessing in itself, even when I can’t make complete sense of it. And I am glad to be able to share small bits of my existence in this space, but that’s it…some things; some details stay at home where they belong, unless you call me or I call you to talk about it.
I invite each and every one of you to join me this year in making a conscientious effort to live a life filled to the brim with intention. Intention to shape reality in the best way imaginable for us as individuals; intention to shape reality the best way imaginable for our world as a whole.
I truly believe that it is time for each and everyone of us to accept and be responsible for our own experience.
I say, bring it on. It’s time for a revolution! After all, thirteen is my lucky number.