Inviting Possibility

It has been just over two months since I left San Francisco, where I called home for over 10 years, to travel east to my home state of Florida. It was quite an adventure traveling across country solo-- one that had me filled with gratitude each mile of the way, all 3,266 miles. I had the privilege to spend time with dear friends in cities across the U.S., visit small towns that were on my bucket list (like Marfa, TX), and reconnect with distant family all to arrive home after 20+ years of being away building my life. 

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It's been an interesting two months, which interesting is such a boring word as it doesn't really explain the depth of that you're trying to describe. It's been more like unexpectedly transformational. I knew this time in South Florida would be a time of reconnection and healing, especially related to my grandmother's passing last year. But little did I know that after traveling all over the U.S. attempting to make a new home and community for myself, that I would find my way back right where it all started, to feel peace and a sense of centeredness. There's more to share, but all of that will come in time through my writings here and in my book (yes, that's right!). Stay tuned...

With this unexpected experience of groundedness, it has me reflecting on how we come back to a place, a person, or an experience with a new lens, with new eyes to see and feel what might be different. We can often go into experiences with our own idea of what the outcome will be-- what we will feel like, what we will be on the other side of it, what may occur for us. I took a huge leap moving here and with that I moved through immense fear and chose to change my mindset about how I will experience the world and this time here in South Florida. This month I'm focusing my mindset on inviting possibility, moving from limited thinking to possibility thinking.

It's a practice that I've adopted for quite some time and I've chosen to be super intentional this next month with this mindset. I've seen so much come out of just saying to myself, well, what if it all works out?! Instead of saying, what if it doesn't work out? 

When we invite possibility into our minds and our lives, we begin to allow all that we've experienced before to fall away so that we can have this beginner's mind and truly observe and absorb what's in front of us, rather than being distracted by what our mind tells us to experience. Now of course, this is a very simple explanation and I'm not speaking to traumatic or frightening experiences, I'm speaking to everyday occurrences. Starting small will help us make this possibility thinking into a habit where we begin to heal old wounds, make peace with pain, and feel more free, experiencing the world with a clearer sense. 

I welcome you to join me this month to invite possibility. See what ways you can say why not?instead of I can't. See how you might be able to shift from limited thinking to possibility thinking, removing the walls of what you think is possible to building walls of believing it is possible. 

Write down all the dreams of you have and post them where you can see them everyday. Look in awe at them, imagining what it will feel like to have your dreams accomplished. 

Invite Possibility  when you're presented with opportunities to connect with others. Consider how you may allow yourself to be more open to the world and those around you. 

Explore this path of possibility to see what is capable of unfolding for you.

Rebirth

She fell in love at age 5.

Ocean waves crash into the sand. Kisses her feet.

Eyes glitter against the clear blue waters.

Turquoise with a splash of sky blue and mountain granite.

Sweet, salty mist of air.

Salt crystals form on her cheek.

Who knew that 30 years would be like this?

Waves crashing in and out. The ebb and flow of life.

Loves lossed. Loves gained.

Why don’t you call me father? Why do you have to go mother?

I don’t understand, don’t you love me?

Darkness enveloped her heart to create a boundary between the cruel world and her soft heart.

She dimmed that light inside. Softened to a glow that only she could see and only she could let out when she felt safe.

A fire lit one night late. As she heard the screams coming from the other room.

The pounds of boot on flesh.

Ribs cracking.

Blood splashing.

Desperate cries for help.

Stop. Enough.

The warrior rose within her.

Fighting to make things right. To stop the violence. To stop the pain. But it didn’t stop.

Once the warrior awoke, it could never lie sleep again.

Through every heartache, through every trial, through every tribulation, through every loss, through every celebration.

And yet forgotten.

Overlooked by the glitters and glam of Prakriti.

The outside world of instant gratification, distraction, attachment.

Perseverance. Resilience. Moving Forward.

Lovers came and went. And she moved on. Opening her heart little by little.

But still encased with that darkness and fear.

Everyone knew her strength, her courage, her resiliency. Except for her.

As she walked the earth step by step, alone. Lost. Searching for that place called home.

She thought she found it. A great love. A deep love. A powerful love.

A flash of light. A look. A word. A moment. And then gone.

Heart cracked, split open and severed. Fallen to the ground. Sunk to the earth. Curled up. Confused. Broken. Uncertain.

She awoke one day in the presence of others.

Seekers just liker her.

Seeking to be seen.

Seeking to be heard.

Seeking to be loved.

Seeking to unleash the beauty hiding within.

Seeking to unleash that warrior within.

A feeling of home overwhelmed her as she looked around in the eyes and hearts in this room.

She had never been here before, physically, yet there was a familiar feeling.

A feeling of wholeness.

Of comfort.

Of aliveness.

She looked behind and realized all that had led her to this moment.

All the heartache. All the anguish. All the trials. All the joys.

All brought her here, to this very moment.

A return home. A rebirth.

To unfurl her butterfly wings and fly.

Video

Conversations with Strangers

After teaching yoga one early morning, I got in an uber to get home to make it to my day job. I was annoyed at how long it took for me to get a car, living in our instant gratification way of life, and all I wanted to do was go home. Of course, this uber driver wanted to chat it up, and I wasn't having it. Often people ask me if I’m going to work and I say, "no I’m going home and then work. I just came from work". This brings on more curious questioning. Then I go on to tell them what I do and usually people respond with even more peaked interest. At this point in the conversation questioning with the driver, I started to let go of my annoyance and staying in my own head, to just have a simple conversation with a stranger. We started to talk about yoga.

"So, do you do any of that mental stuff in yoga?", he asked.

"Oh, like philosophy?", I responded trying to figure out what he meant by "mental stuff".

"Yea, like philosophy, that's what I meant", he said with a twinge of embarrassment. 

"For sure, I incorporate a lot of philosophy into my teaching. Yoga is more about philosophy than it is about the body."

"You must be really happy. You know, doing all that yoga and teaching all that yoga."

"Well, sure. But not all the time. Happiness and sadness are impermanent. Each day is a new day and brings new things for us. Change is the only constant in this life. And so yoga is the way for me to be able to move throughout all the various emotions and changes in life and accept that each emotion and change is just as important as the other."

He wanted to share, he wanted to be heard, he wanted to be seen. Just like most of us. Just like ALL of us.

He paused and I could see the gears in his brain moving and working. He shook his head in agreement and went on to share that he had been dealing with depression for the past three years. His mother passed away and he was very close with her. My heart sank as I saw the story in his eyes. I began to soften, to have more compassion, to truly listen. And that’s just what I did, listen. He wanted to share, he wanted to be heard, he wanted to be seen. Just like most of us. Just like ALL of us. He had to drop out of college to take care of his mom while she was sick and then depression set in. She passed away shortly after and then depression got too bad for him. He went back to school but couldn’t finish the major that he had started. He’s driving for uber and lyft struggling to find a job. I listened deeply and said "that sounds really difficult". His face softened. A glow formed around him. It was as if he really needed to get that out. To connect with someone who could truly listen to the heartache he had experienced. To know that he was not alone. I encouraged him to keep following his passion and things take time. Advice I needed to tell myself. As he dropped me off, I looked at him in the eyes and said, “It gets better. Keep moving forward.” It was quite a profound moment, one that I didn’t realize how big it was until a few days later and was reflecting on a reading that ended with the following quote.

We can feel joy and sadness. We can feel anger and happiness. We can feel disappointment and love. The challenge is to see all of the emotions as equally important to our self and our being. And that no one emotion is greater than the other but is a product of the human experience. It took me a long time to realize this and accept it. I still have a hard time accepting it, especially on those days when the negative thoughts and emotions overwhelm me. Having that encounter with the uber driver and then reflecting on this reading really allowed me to see the full complexity of the human experience and find gratitude in it all. To feel gratitude for being alive.