No Sleep For The Thinking

I keep telling myself that there is NO GOOD REASON that I don’t sleep well. I have done so many types of body work, including Alexander Technique and Somatic, that I “should” (evil word) be able to shut my brain down.

“NOT SO!!!,” says my alter ego (the black kitten below)

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Taking a Moment With Mindfulness

Many years – moons ago, it seems –  I was introduced to the concept of “mindfulness.”  I’d been practicing mindfulness most of my life without realizing it…and I hadn’t realized, because I’d not always *quite* had the hang of it. Still, I was vastly more spiritual than I had words to explain, and my ever-wandering mind, and proclivity for all thing magical, led me – both knowingly and not – down the path.

After at least a decade and a half of Alexander Technique, Craniosacral and Somatic work, EMDR, Brainspotting, Martial Arts, and countless spiritual endeavors, I fumble a little bit less. . .  But I’m still learning, and have leagues yet to go – lifetime pursuit, as so many things are.

But it isn’t required that we are necessarily graceful with it.  Fluidity comes with consistency, and mindfulness is very much a way of life.  It is therefore a quotidian ritual of sorts that we evolve with, and as a result of –  to expect mastery instantly is almost an injustice, as the (sometimes clumsy!) journey is what facilitates learning at the deepest levels.  It’s not unlike meditation – widely known to be a challenge at first – as it becomes smoother with time.

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Life these days feels intensely hectic – I want to say more so than ever but I’ve only know this Earth, and time, for 38 years!  The influx (and imposition – *cough* *cough* social media!) of technology has created a reality in which “connectivity” is at the ultimate high. 24/7, to be exact.  There are many blessings born of such advances, but there are also massive changes afoot – ones which I daresay are reprogramming human beings at the most fundamental level.

We are all born with a magical capacityALL of us.  We all have the ability to tap into the same natural resources that have allowed us to survive as a species from the beginning of time.  But it feels frighteningly apparent that even children – generally more adept at awareness than overly-conditioned adults – are also losing the ability.  

It isn’t just about looking down at a phone while crossing the street – awareness out the window and then some!  It’s also in losing the ability to “read” others – the read the non-verbal cues, to FEEL, to SENSE… Children drown nearly as much in the virtual world these days, to the degree that even THEY don’t see the full picture anymore… 

Scary thought…

The good news?  That extra-sensory ability never truly goes away.  What’s happening is more that we are – byproduct of a civilized, modern society – conditioned OUT of our natural abilities.  Our senses become duller because who needs to be aware of danger when getting dinner involves takeout, or benign shopping aisles?!  

Oh, and that “6th” one?  It gets completely shrouded by all the noise.  Sadly, modern man somehow thinks a 6th sense is actually supernatural.  Ever notice that animals have it?  Right…well. . . *reminder* : we ARE animals.  We have it too.  Just —> noise, noise, noise! 

Enter mindfulness.  

The practice of mindfulness brings back the precise moment in time in which we find ourselves.  For me, it is seeing each letter as I type my words, hearing myself speak them as they form, seeing the pause of my fingertips, hearing the  music that is playing in the background…

Human beings have always projected ahead, and reflected on the past – for instance, planning a hunt to gather food, and drawing the hunt on the walls of a cave after the fact.  But nowadays, that practice is so multi-fold that stress tends to weasel its way in to the process, leaving us frazzled and forgetful of the moment we are actually IN.

When we DO take a deep breath…and take the moment in…our heart rate actually slows down with us.  Our very life force, how about that?

Mindfulness is the place in which perspective is purest, in which our emotions no longer control us (this is a wonderful practice for anger and the anxiety-prone), in which our innate magical abilities awaken.

It can have other great effects too – we might actually enjoy our food, eat less instead of devouring (I’m guilty of that!) It gives stress a swift kick for a time too (something we all need!) Mindfulness can catch us in the act of judging, or just before an argument that we needn’t have… It helps us to become better all around.

Mindfulness is like the free gift of wizardry!  We have the power to create, to subdue, to awaken, to affect, to manifest, and to see.  Our feelings are deeper, our heart unfolds, and suddenly. . ?  It’s like we are truly alive.

At a time of the year when life is particularly stressful – and focused on the superficial in many ways – take a moment (or, better…SEVERAL) and relax into your breath. 

Feel.  

Sense.  

BE.

The magic will do the rest.

Blessed be,

❤ 

A Good Laugh!

I’m going away for a few days to see my best friend (who really is more like my sister!), and my beautiful F1 Chausie, Kemisi who lives on her farm,  Avalo Cat Sanctuary.  ❤

It’s been a tough week, and I have a TON on my plate…so it’s a much-needed getaway.  And the thing about Avalo is that it is, without question, the ONE place I have EVER gone that gives me a total, all-encompassing sense of peace.  

When I’m there, my spirit, my heart, my soul…can just BE.  It was that way from the first time I stepped foot on that soil, and it’s never changed.  

Part of it is being with people I call family.  Part is being surrounded by Nature, in the company of over 100 animals. And part of it is because of the way we laugh.

Utter nonsense and tomfoolery will have our sides in stitches!  I get a solid abdominal workout on a regular basis down there from the sheer laughter alone! Whether the result of cat puffing and hopping sideways (you know how threatening the movement of a household, inanimate object can be!)…or I “levitated off my horse” to avoid wearing a spider (AND it’s web) as a chest plate…there is always something to be snickering about.

Kemisi, not to ally sure what's taking place, and flattening her ears - not MEANT to be cute of funny, but she's too precious not to smile at!

Kemisi, not to ally sure what’s taking place, and flattening her ears – not MEANT to be cute of funny, but she’s too precious not to smile at!

And that’s the point.  There is NOTHING better than a good, hearty laugh.  I maintain that we all take time to giggle, or guffaw, as much as possible!

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I was speaking to my Cranial Sacral teacher today – also a best friend, and my mentor in many ways.  We’ve worked together doing Alexander Technique, Cranial Sacral, and Somatic work for probably over a decade now – he’s phenomenally gifted, remarkably attuned, and incredibly down to earth.  

In our discussion today I said…“I sometimes forget just how much of a whirlwind my Life has been over the last 20 years!  I’ve been in a constant ‘crisis mode’ of varying degrees and I’m not sure I have had a chance to catch my breath…or make sense of it…until NOW!”  

We spoke at length about the challenges and growth of the last many years, some of which were incredibly painful and impactful…and along the way, we laughed.  Not just kind of, sort of…but really LAUGHED.

Certainly not AT the experiences I’ve had – because those don’t deserve to be diminished, nor (ever) brushed under the allegorical carpet.

But we laughed just because.

We laughed in honor of recovery, accomplishments, new horizons…

We laughed when doing exercises – some of which I recalled tough memories and purposefully sqwunched up my face, and bared my “claws” in response to them.  Directed at the poor skeleton on the Human Body poster on the wall, no less.  “He can take it!” Vincent said as I giggled and sqwunched again.

And as we laughed, my heart lightened even more.

It’s been a long and arduous journey in many ways – with the kind of injuries that aren’t visible, especially when you are always the smiling, happy, or “tough” one.

But laughter has never, ever failed me…and it never will.  

I (much to their chagrin) sometimes video my father and my hunnie with my phone.  I KNOW they don’t like it…but as I always say, “when I’m sad, or having a really rough day…I pull them up, and watch…and LAUGH…and everything is better.”

And I mean it.

Everything is ALWAYS better when you laugh.

Even just a little.

One giggle won’t part the seas…but it WILL part the clouds.  And once that happens?  The sun sees the opening. ❤

Laugh on.

XX ❤ X