The Masks We Share

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In therapy yesterday, I told my therapist that I was no longer afraid of my future, that I was riding the wave of what it is to be a single woman in this world. That it’s true that I don’t know where life will take me, but that I do know that wherever I land I will make my home. Over the last few months, I have rediscovered a resilience I had forgotten I had. In living a life that was not mine I had forgotten the cloth my soul was cut from and the girl I was went somewhere I could not follow. She’s with me now. She is me and I am her and we are riding this wave together.

It’s not a tidal wave, or a hurricane, or a tsunami I am surfing. It’s a life wave that most of us ride at some point in our lives. I’m not sad anymore. My heart has mended and I know that I was put on this earth to love and to love well. I know my own grace, my own inner goodness, and I know that I loved fully and absolutely even when all hope was gone. I love still.

Today I met a homeless woman my age. Her eyes were my eyes only lost and sad and wandering. How easy it would be to become her. She started to wander into traffic so I called her and she came to me on my island of a street corner. “A mask,” she said, panicked. “I need a mask.” I rummaged in my bag, pulled out a clean one and gave it to her. “Take care of yourself babe,” I said and then blew her a kiss. She blew me a kiss and I walked to the gym. Our kiss broke my heart because in that short interaction where I saw myself where I could have been if not for the grace of God, I also saw my own pain and fear reflected back at me. “Take care of yourself,” I was talking to me. “Babe,” I was talking to me, the blown kiss, I was sending love to me while loving her for being the me that somehow fell into the insanity that I have fought for so long.

Inside the gym I went straight to the bathroom, locked the door and got down on my knees and prayed out loud. I prayed for all the hungry, and the cold, the lost and the forgotten, the insane and the sane because there is only a hair’s width of distance between one and the other. I prayed for my husband and I prayed for my son and lastly, I prayed for me. When I was done my eyes were swollen with crying and I stared at my wrinkled puffy face and saw the girl I was grown into a strong sane woman who loves…loves…loves…without condition.

I am riding this wave and I don’t know where it will take me and I am doing it with compassion and kindness, forgiveness, and love. I invite you all to join me. Let go of your expectations, your preconceptions, your biases and your pain and remember that somewhere in the depths of a city you are cold and raged and begging for a new mask to wear because you are frightened and alone with no mask at all.

Be humbled. Know the I AM. Find comfort on your knees. Love without condition. Be peace to know peace. I love you and I mean it from the bottom of my soul. I honest to God love you.

Just How Afraid Are You America?

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I just finished Dr. David Roger Clawson’s article, Are You Searching for Your Authentic Self. It’s a must read so click the link. As a hippy dippy kind of person, I have been on a life long search for my authentic self. I have always looked forward to that moment when I discover me and feel whole and at peace. Dr. Clawson has just blown that little daydream all to shit. He posits brilliantly that the self shifts continually based on the level of threat or safety you as a person are feeling in a given moment. You under threat can become a raging insecure misogynistic bigot with little or no emotional equilibrium. That’s right. Under a heavy level of threat or for us laymen let’s say fear, we can become our own worst nightmares, meaning we’re just a white sheet and a pointy hat away from totally hate chaos.

On the other hand, our ideal selves, the aspirational us that we dream to be, the happy, joyful, creative, loving, fertile, healthy and connected selves are only found when our person is in a state of safety, security, and are seen and valued by valued others. This is our dream person but we are so far from being this person because we live in a society that values what Dr. Clawson calls a threat load or for us, fear load. We don’t share, we compete, our social networks pray on our weaknesses and our politics have moved from working for our highest good as a nation to bullying and backstabbing while our nations political and civil defense swings in the balance. The fearmongers are in charge and we are paying the physical and psychological price.

The fall out, Dr. Clawson says, is that our threat load is so high that if you’re not mentally ill already you probably can look forward to being so. The pills are awesome, take it from me, the depression, anxiety, and suicidal ideation, not so cool. The other fun fact about a high threat load is that you will probably die of a major stress induced disease such as obesity, diabetes, heart disease etc. When you live under a high threat/fear load you do not go into rest and digest, you are not calm, you do not heal, inflammation becomes your constant companion and cancer is just waiting around the corner.

So why am I talking about this totally depressing article. Because it has an obvious and manageable solution. Choose safety, choose inner peace, share, avoid stress, sleep, make love, kiss your partner, wave at your neighbor, practice nervous system regulation, turn off your TV and exit the matrix. There is no law that says you must participate in the high threat paradigm. I love the way Dr. Clawson ends his beautiful and stirring article by saying, “Let’s move towards safety in everything we do. No person on the planet can truly be safe until all are safe.” Doesn’t that just scream unity consciousness and universal love. So, you have your marching orders thanks to Dr. Clawson. Let’s go forth and choose peace, love and safety, a happy sympathetic nervous system and a lighter load.

You are your own master. Chose love every time. Love your neighbor as yourself. Be the light you wish to see in the world. Be peace so you can know peace.

The Human Butterfly Effect: Chaos or Cohesion?

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Humans hate change. We live for certainty and stability in our lives. From the time we are small we look for constancy from our home and community. Instability becomes a thing to fear and often causes the most trauma we experience as children. We grow up spoon-fed on fairy tales that teach us that if we go to the right schools, marry the right person, buy the right house, have the right number of kids, and work really hard we will have the stability we crave. Truth is change is a constant we cannot avoid. Change comes in three ways: chance, choice and, crisis. The important thing is that even in the worst chance or crisis moment where change is inevitable, you still have a choice. The choice is how you choose to react to the change. No matter how much pain the change comes with you still have a choice in how you handle the new situation. Do you panic, do you give up, or do you find a new way to live?

The universal law of cause-and-effect states that every cause has an effect and every effect becomes the cause of something else. So In reality every disturbance in our personal ecosystem creates a disturbance in the lives or personal ecosystems of the people in the community we live in. And as their lives are disturbed, no matter how minutely, there is a butterfly effect that ripples out touching every person who comes into contact with every person who came into contact with you and your change. The butterfly effect is a metaphor for the principal of chaos theory describing the sensitivity of a given system and its dependency on given conditions. Our personal environments, the social systems we live in, are incredibly delicate and are affected by every change that occurs no matter how distant or minute.

When we are faced with a change that affects us on a massive scale and damages our physical, mental and emotional stability, the emotional and mental stability of our ecosystems and those around us are also affected. In these times of dramatic change, it is necessary to try to center and ground yourself, to reach for help and reassurance, and remember that you have three choices. You can fix the problems the change brought, reframe your thinking about the change, or sit in the center of your new normal and become lost in grief for how things used to be.

Change is the only constant and surrendering to its inevitability is the healthiest way to handle it. Surrendering to your new reality will feel difficult at first but it will help your mind shift into flexible thinking patterns that will further aid you when the next change occurs. Ground yourself in the now, surrender your life to your higher power, and pray for guidance as you navigate your new normal with grace. Change is coming, prepare yourself now to be the best version of you so that when it comes you can greet it with the calm and presence of mind that will not disrupt your community through ripples of chaos and fear but with the peace and tranquility of a divinely centered being capable of adaptation and serenity even in the face of upheaval. Your community needs this of you. The ripple effect of one negative, unbalanced person can set of a tidal wave of instability and chaos that is far reaching and traumatic to the small and sensitive individuals that live within our communal sphere so be mindful of how you go. You are important, your life is important, and how you react to the world around you is your greatest gift or your greatest curse to your community at large.

I love you-Keep going-You got this