I'm a mess! ......Don't worry though! I'm laughing as I write this. It's not a bad thing, it's an entertaining thing; that's not always the case, but in my practice to embrace WHAT IS, it's entertaining me in this moment.
Why am I a mess? ...I'm so up and down - inflated and high on life one day, deflated and trying to pump myself back up the next. How is that entertaining? Because in my want to find the positive in that, I've made it so. If the angels watch us like we watch subjects on "reality shows", they're bound to be entertained by me(us). I find it amusing to think the angels and saints may be shaking their heads at some of the ridiculous decisions being made on earth or laughing at the silly mundane things we allow to upset us. Some poor choices have a much higher consequence than others. Some trials are as detrimental as we perceive them to be. We can see that when we observe others reality. Wonder if the angels are seeing the same from their place of HIGH DEFINITION VIEWING.
Last night my husband came into the room where I was watching said "reality tv" and found me in tears. He was shocked to say the least. Here I am, not what you'd call an advocate for television, watching a show I would normally judge as "trash tv" yet I was brought to tears with empathy and being blessed with a new awareness.
I had just witnessed Mindy McReady sing a soul stirring song about rising from the ashes of the burned out mess she had created. One she introduced as being written in prison years before, (she's had a history of drug and alcohol abuse) and now realized had been written for each of these celebrities she had befriended during this rehab program that was being aired as reality tv.
In this moment my awareness and gratitude increased and I saw these trials I've been wrestling with in a completely new light. The things I have a tendency to struggle with are nothing in comparison to what others are facing. I had said this very same thing in an interview towards the end of Jonnae's earthly life. Even in that most sorrowful time, I was able to see there are those going through something worse. It was in that comparison to the lives of others, that I was able to find gratitude and not fall victim to our circumstance. I'm addicted to food for goodness sake, not drugs, not alcohol, not porn. When I make a bad choice, I'm not jeopardizing my relationships or jeopardizing the safety of others. My addiction has not consumed me the way these people's addictions have them.
Tonight it's been the same thing. My daughter has recorded several episodes of The Biggest Loser and has been watching them. As I've been writing and caught moments of them, once again I'm reminded how blessed I am. These contestants have never experienced their "A" game. I'm merely trying to reclaim mine. I don't have nearly as long or difficult a road to travel to get to it as they do, yet they are determined and exuding great tenacity in this moment to get there. I have in times past, but I'm still struggling to tap into that determination now.
The bulk of my struggles this winter are challenges I've created with my lack of discipline in making the best choices. And with those said challenges, I'm not trying to break free from something that's killing me or hurting those around me. I'm not trying to lose weight equivalent to a full grown person.
It might appear I'm being particularly hard on myself, but I assure you I'm not. I know I've been through something most won't go through in their lifetime. I'm able to see how I could have created this 'time in the valley' and be very forgiving and compassionate. If anyone can step outside themselves and see in several different lights, I can. Another 'survival' practice I became good at through the difficult journey with Jonnae and give thanks for. It's most empowering and beneficial. I have no doubt I'll find my "A" game again.
I'll close with two really cool thoughts that have recently given me great clarity and increase my "endurance" capabilities. There was a quote that I read in one of Og Mandino's books while Jonnae was conditioning for her bone marrow transplant, called "The Twelfth Angel". Every single book Mandino wrote came to me during a time that was Divinely orchestrated. When I think of the multitude of books he wrote and how they could have been presented to me in a different order or different timing, but were not, I'm blown away. In this book there was a small child who was ill but had a tenacious energy and spirit (reminded me of Jonnae) Whenever asked how he was, his chipper response was, "I'm getting better and better, every day in every way!" In our want to talk ourselves into positive perspective, I challenged Jonnae to repeat this several times; whether outloud or in her head.
There was a time, towards the end of her young life, that she suffered a seizure and did not know who anyone was, including Johnny and myself. She couldn't say ABC's or complete any thought or sentence. Yet, as she drifted off to sleep, she softly repeated, 'Better and better.....Better and better..."
Now when someone asks me how I am, whether than respond with a thoughtless (and sometimes not honestly felt answer) "fine" I say, "Better every day in every way". Whether I feel "fine" or not, that chosen response reminds me that every thing I experience will result with me better every day in every way. Hopefully that awareness will not only bless me, but will bless the one asking me also.
The second thought was shared with me at a networking event a couple of nights ago and I the power of it has really struck me in a most profound way (thanks Gus)! In our sharing our missions, Gus told me that he signed a blank piece of paper to represent his contract with God. WOW!!! I let him know I was going to duplicate his contract and do the same thing. To surrender to God's will and dedicate my life to honor, praise, and glorify Him, is to not put any conditions or limitations to my commitment. A blank piece of paper reminds me that I release myself from expectations and am open to whatever God chooses to create. I'm ALL in - NO MATTER WHAT!!! That's powerful.
Winter is losing it's grip. I can feel the stirring of the Holy Spirit and know that Spring and Easter are going to be quite symbolic of my own new personal growth and resurrection. I can feel that miracles are about to happen, as I reflect on the miracle of Our Savior's resurrection, and I'm once again inflated and high on life. These two new tools will keep my Spirit from deflating. Thank you Father for coddling me and loving me unconditionally and blessing me with a week of fresh joy.