November 2017
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Archive for the ‘Health & Healing’ Category

Traditions

Perhaps more than any other Season this time of year holds the greatest awarness of our traditions.  Solstice, Christmas, Hanakah, Kwanza and other winter celebrations have traditions unique to each.  And then there are family and individual traditions.  It is a very special time of year; a time to share; to give; to connect; to reflect; to create; to laugh; to cry; to pray; to focus on the best of human nature.

It is also a time that spotlights ‘need’ and the not-so-nice side of humanity.  As you go about the business of celebrating your seasonal traditions, I invite you to create a new one.  It can be as simple as saying a kind word or two to over-worked sales people; flash a hearty smile at harried strangers in the supermarket; say ‘thank you’ to the people who serve you all year long; make a donation to a favorite charity; support a local food-bank; be a Secret Santa.

Love is the greatest gift we can give and the finest tradition we can celebrate.

Lights

I love lights.  I am a huge fan of pyrotechnics; I  always have Christmas-like lights in my home in all seasons.  This time of year is a beautiful banquet of beams, sparkle, shimmer, twinkle, candlelight, lamplight firelight, white light and festivals of light.

Light is so necessary to our very existence in every sense; physically, emotionally and spiritually.  I invite you to enjoy, to relish the seasonal light show, including the most magnificent of all light shows…the starry heavens.  Winter brings clear, crisp, intimate viewing of the wonders of the heavens.  I saw a shooting star a couple of early mornings ago; brief and breath-taking.  It is also a time for deep reflection in the darkness of shorter days; a good opportunity for soul-review.

Invite the numinous; rejoice in the light.

Attitude

Attitude is everything.   We all face the challenges of embodied living.  We all experience some really good days and  some really bad days.  Yet, the feelings we entertain about ‘good’ and ‘bad’ days are internal processes;  it is all about our attitude.

An experience from my childhood illustrates this well.  My Grandparents were taking me for a picnic and a swim at my beloved Putah Creek  (At that time there were no parks, you just found a good spot and we had a favorite).  It was a very hot day.  The anticipation of a good time in the water followed by eating the most awesome fried chicken in the world, had me positively giddy with excitement.  Then the unthinkable…a flat tire.  My Grandfather managed to get the car mostly off the road.  Then he got out to take a look at the situation.  As I watched him from the backseat a cloud of doom descended over me.  We were nowhere near our favorite spot.  My day was ruined!

Then my Grandfather disappeared.  I had not seen him walk toward the Creek which could not be seen from the road.  My Grandmother and I exchanged no words.  We sat in hot, sticky  silence; waiting.

Finally Grandfather was back.  He talked to my Grandmother and the next thing I knew we were loading our arms and backs with our picnic and heading off the side of the road through the weeds and rocks to the river.  There was no trail so it was a bit of effort, and did I mention it was really hot?  Then, there it was…he had scouted out a wonderful site.

We had an awesome day!  Late in the afternoon when it was considerably cooler, my Grandfather changed the tire and we headed back home.   Reflecting on this event many years later,  I realized the flexibility, the wisdom and the attitude that prevailed that hot summer afternoon.  The day wasn’t ruined because we  never made it to our ‘favorite’ spot.  There was no complaining, griping or other displays of frustration or anger.  There was a great lesson in attitude.

We seldom can change what happens outside of  us.  We do  have the power to change the attitude within us.

 

Tears

It is not always comfortable to cry.  Although we shed tears of joy, usually tears are shed because we are in pain; we hurt, physically, emotionally and/or spiritually.

As we mature especially in a culture that reveres stoicism. we tend to do our best to hide our tears as shedding them is often judged as a sign of weakness.  Or at the opposite extreme, a display of the melodramatic.  Yet, we have tear ducts for reasons beyond cleaning and moisturizing our eyes.  Tears poring forth from the depths of pain are healing.  Tears are cleansing and often bring relief to our sorely soulful bodies.

Crying can be a sacred action.  When these moments of pain and loss come into your life, and they will, allow the tears of healing.

Thanksgiving

I invite you this week and in the coming weeks, to step outside the seasonal commercial/media hype and connect with non-tangible gifts which can so easily be pushed into the shadows.  This is a time for giving thanks, for sharing and caring.  Although it may seem paradoxical, it is so important to give to ourselves…especially if you’re a woman.  Take time to rest, to relax, to breathe.  Staying centered and grounded within, is a very important key to mitigating the clamor and chaos that is oft-times impossible to avoid this time of the year.

Wishing all of you a very special Thanksgiving!

Beauty

The word of the week is beauty.  Driving from Forestville to St. Helena, a memory detonated in my mind like a firework display that makes me giggle and ooh and aah.  My father’s words echoed through times past as I heard him say, “Look around kids and take it in…you live in one of the most beautiful places on earth.” (We were born and raised in St. Helena in the famed Napa Valley).

It is Fall in Northern California, and although not the east coast Fall that is routinely immortalized in photos, it is breath-takingly beautiful!  I give thanks everyday for the glorious beauty that surrounds me, that inspires me, that comforts my soul.

This week I invite you to savor the beauty that surrounds you in all its forms, especially as we move into the fullness of the season of Thanksgiving.

An Inconvenient Truth

No, this isn’t about global warming unless a body fever and the spewing of noxious gases and toxic substances into the environment could be considered  contributing factors.  I am recovering from the flu; it has been over a week.  The’ inconvenient truth’ is that my daily routine has been brought to a standstill as my body wages war on the invading virus.

Now that I have passed through the 48 hours of pure hell (although punctuated interestingly by amazing, vividly colored dreams that were entertaining) my recovery is slow, demanding and tortuously inconvenient.  I am doing my utmost to honor my body; to not start pushing it around because I am impatient to be back on my feet at full speed.  I am very careful about what I am putting into it, not too hard since what is not accepted is quickly and  unpleasantly eliminated.  Move around too much or too fast and I break out into an uncomfortable, febrile sweat.

Hey, I have many responsibilities; I have clients to see and blogs to write; baking to do; correspondence to catch up on; people to care for; classes to teach…so can I just pass up the inconvenience of recovery at get back in action stat?

It is for me a great challenge to honor the body, to let it rest, to be kind, gentle and nurturing.  But I am learning.  It is a good lesson; profound in it’s ‘inconvenient truth’.  For the day will come when I don’t bounce back.  That time when I come to the end of the trail.  Although I will be leaving  my body behind, if I can master my impatience and allow the process, I know that transition will be so much easier.

Honoring

Moving deeper into the Fall Season, I am keenly aware of the act of honoring.  Indeed, this feels like a Season of Honoring;  Samhain, Veteran’s Day, Dia de los Muertos, All Saint’s Day and Thanksgiving.  These set apart moments in time beckon us out of our daily routines and into respecting and honoring special moments, people and events.

The word for this week is honor. I invite you to go beyond the bounds of these designated moments to find and honor all that surrounds you that is special, that is positive, that is precious, that is beautiful.  And most importantly, to honor yourself.

Harvest

Harvest season is in full swing here in Northern California, yet Winter approaches masked by the unseasonal warm beauty of Fall.   As odd as it may seem this is a great time to purge.

‘Purge’ is the word for this week.   From the Latin, purge, it means  ‘to cleanse, to clear out’.  We think of harvest as a time to take in, and so it is; yet it is also a perfect time for letting go.  De-cluttering our environment and making space to receive the bounties that come with the harvest is not only prudent but also very satisfying work.  So too, de-cluttering our mental, emotional and spiritual houses prepares us to receive the boundless energies of love and true abundant living.

I invite you to meditate this week on what you would choose to ‘purge’ from your life, your consciousness, your emotions and your physical environment and then take a step.  One small action can create a wide ripple.

 

Changes

‘The only constant is change’ so the saying goes. There are some great changes coming to my website. Beginning with this notice, you will begin receiving weekly posts from me on a range of topics. In addition, I will be posting a ‘Word for the Week’.

Some changes we resist and some we embrace…I am embracing this change. Thank you all for your ongoing confidence and support!

Melannie