29 December 2016

Finding my "word"....

Over the past few years, I have begun a tradition of choosing a word that I envision for the coming year ahead.  It is a word that I want to use as my focus and something to come back to in the event that I stumble upon my way. Last year my word was "CONTENTMENT" and it was definitely my intention for 2016.  I found myself coming back to it again and again, as things inevitably go out of focus.  I strived to be content in each moment - to stay present and enjoy the journey rather than only the destination.  There were times that it eluded me and times I got swept up in the romantic notions of what the future may hold.  But in retrospect, I do feel as though I was able to feel contentment for most of this year that now comes to a close. 

And so, with the 2017 year nearly upon us, it is that time to choose a new word to move forward with.  I've been thinking of a few and thinking of what I want this year to hold for me in order to narrow down the list. What keeps coming to me is the word COURAGE.  I have admittedly been afraid, especially after going through so much change this past decade or so.  I think what I have learned this year has brought me to the point where I feel ready to have courage.  

Closing the store is the last official tie I had to my previous life - it is the store that I opened with Tim, in the hopes to have a family and live "happily ever after." It is what I came home to when I returned to Canada. The past few years have been about so much change both personally and professionally, that by closing this chapter I have allowed for the space to bring in new beginnings.  In the moments where I felt as though I was stumbling and not where I thought I should be, I now feel as though I am returning to some of my original dreams.  

I have been trying to answer these 25 end of the year reflection questions a friend at work gave to me and there were a few that it took me quite a bit of time to answer.  The first question was "What is the best thing that you did this year?" - seemingly easy but no.  What could I actually quantify as the BEST thing? I read through my journals, I opened my Gratitude Jar and I relived most of this year in order to come to that answer.  And what I have decided is that the best thing I did this year was allow myself to fall in love with a great man.  He may not get to be my man forever, but by loving him I learned so much about myself and about what I want my life to be.  I have guarded my heart so closely over the past few years - even at the times when I thought I was letting love in. In retrospect, I can see how I let the same toxic man into my life over and over again.  I realized what love is by loving JC and I have come to terms with knowing that T and I didn't share true love.  That was a very big lesson to learn.  So as scary as it was and even though it ended beyond my wishes, opening my heart to love this year was by far the best thing I could have done for myself.  I have learned that it is my life mission to love, how wonderful and freeing a discovery that has been.  

The year 2017 is a "1" year in numerology and bids us all to start something new - it is about new initiatives and beginnings.  I look at the coming year hopeful for all the possibility that lay before us.  Building on the word contentment from last year and the word love from the year before that, I look ahead with courage because new beginnings are often scary.  I strive to Be Brave and live an authentic life to honour our dear Allie Sunshine, who live on in us all. I want to be courageous to start a new career, to purchase myself a new(er) car, to allow this new chapter to unfold and remain present to appreciate each day.  As I allow my heart to heal, I will learn to make space for love to come again, now that I know what it is that I am looking for and the kind of love I learned was actually possible.  The last few days of this year are about closure and completion and then we begin again. Tomorrow is never guaranteed and so I will do my best to find courage every day to try something new, to do something that scares me, that pushes me and that allows me to grow.  I strive for the courage to be myself and to be content with all that I am, knowing that in time, the person I am meant to share my life with is going to love me for all of me.  Looking forward, staying present and being my own true self. xo

13 December 2016

I suck at goodbye....

It's true.... I totally suck at saying goodbye. I am not good at all at letting go.  But here I am... 

There has been a lot of introspection over the past while - a part of me started to say weeks but really, it's been exponentially longer than that.  I feel like much of the past 6 years have been about looking inside, digging deep and beginning again.   To be honest, I feel very grateful for all the ups and downs of the past few years because it is in that time that I have truly found myself.

The intention in yoga last night was to remember, without pressure there would be no diamond and without mud there would be no lotus.  Without so much struggle and change, there would in effect be no Lindsay.  I am who I am because of all I have endured.  I am me because of all I have learned, all I have worked through and all that I have struggled against.  Sarah's intention the other night was about perhaps not always needing to let go - to realize that it's not a black and white instance of just cutting things off, but perhaps we need to look at it as "softening our grip." That there is a lot that we have to process and learn from and it's not as simple as just letting it go.  Maybe by just softening around something, we can take those lessons in our own time and allow it to lead our growth.  

I cried in yin tonight because I felt truly grateful for all that this year has brought to me - as hard as some things are to let go of, I am so blessed to have had them.  I remember as part of Gram's eulogy, the words of "how lucky I have have been to have loved something so much, that it makes saying goodbye so hard."  I finally feel at peace with knowing that yes, JC was who my heart was waiting for because I needed to finally love someone who was good for me.  I needed to open my heart to a wonderful, kind man.  I needed to know that my heart, battered and bruised, had the actual capacity to love again.  How lucky am I to find that loving was still there within me? I am so grateful. 

When I decided to close my store, my initial announcement was set for December 1st however here we are Dec 13th and I've finally had the courage to make this real.  I'm slightly over-whelmed by the love and well wishes I've been receiving - it's been quite the battle of head vs. heart to get to this very moment.  It has been a decade of learning and now as it comes to a close, I look forward with great anticipation.  I am confident that there is a whole wonderful future ahead of me.  For the first time, in quite some time, I realize that it is the future that I deserve.  I need to make room for all the wonderful success and love that wants to come into my life.  

I think I am also ok with sucking at good-byes because loving just a little more than the average person is who I am and after many years of soul searching, I am at a place where I truly love me.  I finally believe that after all the years of strife and struggles, that I am making space for love, for success, and for contentment.  Every ending is another beginning so as I say good-bye, I also say hello.  Hello to new possibilities, new lessons, pushing to new limits.  This may be the end to a decade in my life, but I am ready and excited to see what comes out of the next one! 

12 December 2016

 


Today was the first real snowfall of the season! Bundled up in layers, I put on my headphones and trusty Sorel boots and off I went! Along the waterfront you couldn't see across the river from the grey of the sky.  I found myself singing along to what was playing in my ears, smiling wide and loving the chill of the air. At one point, I looked up to the sky and twirled, twirled and twirled around with my arms spread out wide.  I'm sure anyone who passed by probably thought I was off the deep end but it was just me, exuding happiness and being grateful.  Later I took the live music moksha with a friend of mine - it always makes me happy to bring someone new to our studio.  At one point during there was some words intertwined with the acoustics and they just hit home.  Whatever the lecture was that James had piped in to accompany his music, said the words "what if today was your last day on earth? did you do what makes you happy?" My answer was yes.  My heart was full at that moment - I had a leisurely morning of coffee (too much coffee), Christmas movies, and left over mexican take-out.  I journaled, I wrote on here, I worked on my vision board and I thought a lot about what I want in the years ahead.  I danced around my apartment and I danced along the riverfront in the snow.  I went to yoga and I had plans to spend the evening enjoying dinner with friends.  It was a lovely, perfect Sunday.  I added to the Gratitude Jar today that is certain.  I'd like to spend more moments being thankful - thankful not only for the present, but for all the moments that got me right to that point.  There have been many that were so happy they seemed fleeting. And there were many that I thought would break me in half.  But all of the moments - good and bad - have aligned me to today and for that I am truly grateful. xo

11 December 2016

Vision Board

So I'm working on a new vision board for 2017 and trying to think of what my word will be for the coming year.  2016 was CONTENTMENT but I've yet to decide on what next year's word will be as of yet.  I decided not to create a whole new board but to take parts of last years and add to it.  There is so much that is still the same in what I search for; health, happiness, love.  I've kept the notes from friends that lift me up and added words like Courage and Faith.  

In going through stacks of magazines I stumbled upon the journal that I took with me on our trip to Chicago - the words I wrote while I sipped coffee in the early morning before JC awoke.  Reading them now, they almost break my heart.  It's so hard to think that just a few months ago everything seemed like it fit.  I wrote about all these little moments that I just cherished - reading on the plane and he turned toward me to rest his head on my shoulder and close his eyes, cruising the Chicago river in the sunshine with his arm around me, laughing in Target as someone facetimed his wife about which tampons to buy and I promised JC that I would never make him do that! On our first trip together, I imagined so many more in our future. 

One morning, I actually wrote the words that "I am afraid if I allow myself to fall in love with him, that he will leave me" but then as we did yoga under the stars I decided then and there to let go of that fear.  I felt like over all these years, my heart was waiting for him.  That trip was the first time I said the word 'girlfriend' and it felt so great to finally take that step.  And now, it's over.  I did fall in love and he did leave me.  It makes me sad because I truly felt like it was real.  And it makes me sad because I have to accept that it's what he wants and I'm not who he wants.  I have to be grateful for those few moments made me believe in love again and for the picture of us where we are just laughing and being our silly selves.


As I look toward the coming year, I want courage.  I want the courage to try again and to open my heart to love again even though I know it can hurt.  I want to be brave and go for things that push me and that make me grow into a better person.  I want to be brave enough to share my love and my heart with others.  I want the courage to share all my thoughts with someone and let them see the real me.  The girl who notices and cherishes all the little things the most.  The girl who is about to bundle up to go twirling around in the fresh snow falling. Life does happen FOR us and even though reading these entries bring me tears because I'm sad that we're over, I want to be hopeful that by taking this chance it will lead me to where I need to be to find contentment.  By loving him my heart has grown and my heart has seen a new kind of man who is lovely and kind.  By loving him I now know that it's worth the risk - even on days like today where there are few lonely tears.  I will never regret any moment that we shared together - I am thankful.

02 December 2016

the passing of time...

There are some moments where you just realize that life is truly fragile and that time passes so quickly.  I found out this morning that my cousin suffered a heart attack last night (he is now stable & recovering from surgery).  Tonight I will spend time with Peggy before another surgery and more cancer treatment.  Earlier this week, we got the news that another friend's cancer is terminal.  Life can change in the blink of an eye.  Please - if there is anyone out there that actually reads these words - say I Love You more to the people in your life, hold hands, give long hugs and never take for granted that tomorrow is a promised day.  

Christie is the only other friend who is up at the crack of dawn with me and sometimes we have the best conversations during those early hours - before the rest of the world wakes up.  This morning was no different.  I woke up to a lengthy text message from her chalk full of love and exactly what I needed to hear today. It's funny sometimes how friends can sometimes see the things in you that you are struggling to see.  At at time where I kinda feel overwhelmed and I don't feel brave at all, her words telling me how I have inspired her to try new things and push herself beyond what she ever thought she could accomplish touched my heart.  She said that she has just been thinking about me and how I have handled life over the past decade.  How in the face of adversity, I have always tried to be generous and kind.  And there has been a lot - infertility, divorce, moves back and forth across the ocean, moves of my businesses, a few bad dating relationships, losing Dad, losing Paco even and now a few new changes.  It sometimes surprises me when I think of how quickly the years have gone by since I moved back to Canada.  Today I thought a lot about all the ups and downs during that time - all the growth and all lessons learned.  Talking to DJ today helped to refocus my thoughts on just wanting to stay present in this moment - enjoy things day to day.  I want to keep my heart open to whomever is meant to join me on this adventure.  I want to accept that the Universe has a plan for me and for my life and, as much as I think I know who and what would be best for me, I have to relinquish trying to control it and allow things to be. 

With my 40th birthday approaching in less than a year, I started to make a list of a few things that I want to accomplish prior to that milestone.  I leave myself the wiggle room to make changes as needed through the year but for the sake of keeping myself accountable, I wanted to list them into the Universe to make them real. 

1.  Yoga under the stars 
2.  Chicago Architecture Boat Tour 
3.  Ski or Snowboard down a non-bunny hill 
4.  Have something published 
5.  Say I Love You to someone 
6.  Re-climb Grosse Mountain in less than 2 hours 
7.  Visit a new province 
8.  Go to the Zoo or Aquarium 
9.  Try Korean Food 
10. Learn proper Italian 
11. Go on a Yoga Retreat 
12. Run a full marathon 
13. Go on an impromptu road trip 
14. See the Tigers play outside of Detroit 
15. Learn to write my name in Calligraphy 
16. Teach Davis something 
17. Take a roll of pictures with Dad's camera 
18. Ride in a helicopter 
19. Go to a ball game in a different city 
20. Read Little Women 
21. Open champagne on a weeknight 
22. Run a 2hr half marathon 
23. Watch stand-up comedy 
24. Sew a dress for myself 
25. See live ballet 
26. Take a spa day 
27. Ride a trolley 
28. Go to a Drive-In movie 
29. Skinny Dip 
30. Do something that scares me
31. Host a dinner party 
32. Watch all Best Picture nominees 
33. Build for Habitat 
34. Go on a picnic 
35. Go fishing 
36. Ice Skate on an outdoor pond 
37. Hike a mountain 
38. Try surfing 
40. Attend a live concert

I accept that life doesn't always go the way that we have imagined and that sometimes the best-laid plans don't mean shit.  More and more I see how much yoga and meditation have found their way into my daily routine as I strive to live more presently and with gratitude.  There is a part of me that can't wait to open my gratefulness jar in a few weeks and write my New Years notes to people who have made a difference in my life this year.  I don't want to focus on the things I wish for in my life, but rather appreciate all the wonderful people and experiences that I have been blessed with.  I remember at Allie's funeral and how Christie and I sat there, holding hands and trying to sing You Are My Sunshine, with tears streaming down our faces. At the wake, I remember listening to Jeremy and thinking how I would be so lucky to ever have someone love me that much.  We all have "Be Brave" on us somewhere to carry on her spirit and I needed to be reminded of that today - life doesn't go the way we hope or plan but true grace is facing whatever comes with kindness.  The sometimes courage is just the whisper that says "I will try again tomorrow." Be happy for today internet world.  Love big.  Be honest.  Be kind.  Don't be afraid to share your heart.  xo 

26 November 2016

Peace

Yesterday was the closing ceremony for the 21 Day Challenge.  This was my fourth challenge and it's amazing to me how each one has brought something different to my life, as well as to my yoga practice.  Today my heart feels so very full and I am beyond grateful. 

Yoga has always has been about creating space - in my mind, in my heart and in my body.  I have set goals to focus on certain poses in hopes to continually challenge myself and I have realized over and over that it is not through the success or attainment, but in the journey towards.  It is the same as love - it's not about being in love, it's in the falling and getting to know someone in your heart.  It is acceptance that not all days are going to be good days and there will be times of struggle, but what is most important is how we chose to live each moment.  We can chose love or we can choose hate.  We can choose peace over strife, and courage over fear.

At our opening "wedding" we chose words for our partners based on what we were hoping to get out of this challenge and the word I was given was PEACE.  It may not have been what I would have chose for myself, but now in retrospect it was absolutely perfect.  As this quote says, it is not about being without noise or trouble but to be in the midst of struggle and be calm in your heart.  


I feel like I fell more in love with my sangha, my crew, and my community over these past 21 daysBefore the challenge there have been so many moments where I have practiced next to someone and not known their name. I have shared in their energy without knowing them.  So these past few weeks became more about saying hello to everyone I passed in the hall or change room.  It became about not only growing my practice, but my heart too.  I have fallen in love with all of these yogis and for the first time in my life, I am consciously choosing to love without fear.

At the closing ceremony, we went around in a circle stating a highlight of the challenge, what we are taking with us, and what we are leaving behind.  We placed a bindi on the forehead of the person next to us and shared parts of our hearts.  There was so much love in that studio - it's almost hard to describe. 

The parts of this challenge that are my highlights were the workshops.  Getting back to the roots, the girls taught us about the Hindu deities and their influence in yoga.  It was interesting to learn more about the history and how the stories translate into the poses. It wasn't just about the physical practice this time - it was about going deeper and learning about how this asana is more than movement.  For me, it was about finding the calm in my heart.  

I had a few really good revelations as well.  I have now seen how hindsight is 20/20 and sometimes the best thing we can do is step back from something in order to truly see it. I have learned in reflection that I need to focus on always staying present rather than rushing ahead.  I thought that I was afraid to fall in love but I realize in my heart I am just a true romantic who wears her heart on her sleeve. I was holding back to protect myself rather than be myself.  I have fallen in love with the people that I practice next to.  I have fallen in love with the peace that I feel.  I feel like my purpose on this earth is to love.  There is a part of me that does believe I was meant to love JC, perhaps if only for him to see that he also deserves to be taken care of.  Finding peace is allowing me to realize that his journey is his own and as much as I'd like to be by his side, it may not be my place.  It's ok that I have love for him because he is a wonderful manI'm going to stop apologizing or excusing the fact that he has taken up space in my heart.  I can just hope that he always knows that I love him.  I have faith in that what is truly meant to be, find a way of coming together.

I don't want to be a scared person - I want to be me.  Positive, eternally optimistic, perhaps a bit kooky but full of love.  That is what I have to offer to a partner.  I will do sweet things for them and my gifts will all be full of thought and from my heart.  I will love them for all the good that I see in them, perhaps beyond what they even see for themselves.  I will love them, their children, their families, and their friends because they are a part of them and the people in our world are the best part of life.  I will always want to hold their hands and kiss their face and tell them how wonderful it is to have them in my life.  I will always want to wish them well when they travel and want to know when their plane lands.  I want to know how their mother is feeling and how their day was at work - in every complete detail.  I will want to talk through every struggle and I will want to make their days happy.  This is how I love.  I don't need someone to love me back in this same way - I just need someone who loves me in the best way that they know how.  Someone who looks at me doing something silly or telling some story and realizes that I just make them happy.  I want someone to love the girl that just wants to snuggle by a fire and who loves to twirl around in the snow when the big, fluffy flakes finally arrive.  Someone to love walking into a room with me on their arm and be grateful that I will befriend everyone there if possible - I'll remember the names of all their clients & colleagues wives and/or kids because they are all relationships.  Because this is my purpose - I am meant to love.  I am meant to be in instrument of peace and hope that the light within me will honour those next to me in heart, in my life and on my mat.

24 November 2016

Rise Above....

If you are lucky enough to have a friend like my Jess then you will understand every word of this post. I often refer to her as My Charlotte and wrote this original post on her love when I first moved back to Canada. Today her good morning text to me was to listen to the song Rise Above which she has decided is her new theme song to deal with a few things happening in her family.  I think tshis kind of fits appropriately with my post on how certain music can touch our hearts.  

Since today is Thanksgiving for our neighbours to the South, I wanted to put some gratitude into the world.  There are things I don't say thank you for enough so, Oswald these words are for you: 


Thank you for your truth when I have to go to my first funeral after losing my dad and I ask you crazy questions like "Will I have an anxiety attack every time someone dies now?"  You don't look at me like I'm crazy - you just say yes and then wrap your arms around me.  You tell me that it's going to suck and that I will now feel the kind of empathy that makes my heart hurt.  You reassure me that it's normal that my heart feels broken on days like my birthday because I want my dad there with me. You honestly tell me that time will eventually numb it but the ache will never leave. 


Thank you for being there when I need you, not only when it's convenient for you.  When I text you and tell you that I just had my heart broken and it's Friday at 11pm, your first response is "I'll be over in 10 min".  I then spend the next 30min pleading with you not to and telling you I'm fine, that I just need to cry and drink wine and you make me promise not to take a bath or sleeping pills. 


For being real and honest and telling me sometimes that the dream of having a house and 2 kids and a husband is society's fucked up way of putting stupid pressure on us and that I don't need to feel like a failure.  For telling me that life begins at 40 and what a great time to reinvent one's self even though that is total bullshit and I know you wouldn't trade your life in a heartbeat. Because sometimes it is about making the other person feel like they aren't sucking at life.   


For indulging me when I feel most unlovable (which has been often lately) and answering me truthfully when I ask you why you love me? 


For wiping my tears when life sucks.  It sucks a lot less knowing you've got my back and I can actually let my guard down and cry that god-forsaken ugly cry.  For you telling me it's going to be ok and for the times when you didn't know what to say but you just hand me kleenex and refill my wine. 


For understanding when I tell you that I lost my mind in the middle of my run and had a crying breakdown along the waterfront. You let me love openly, loudly and remind me that we are all a little crazy.  


For kicking me in the ass with a reality check that my life isn't so bad and I need to limit my self-hatred a bit and realize that I am healthy and alive and that should be enough for me.  


Thank you for knowing when something is wrong with me even if I won't admit it to you.  And for being such a good friend that you will not let it rest until you get it out of me.  


For always coming up with theme songs for parts of my life and for dreaming up your one-liners to tell the boys who have broken my heart.  


Thank you for being happy with me when things go right.   For celebrating every victory, small or large. For telling me that I am wonderful, even though there are moments where I am not. For holding my hand and for kicking my ass.  For lifting me up and carrying me through.  There is nothing that I can't get through in my life because I have my Charlotte there by my side, ready to love me fiercely and with all of her beautiful heart.  


If I have done one thing right in this life, it is to have surrounded myself with amazing friends and family who remind me that the true beauty in life is love, in every shape and form.  I am truly one lucky girl. xo 

23 November 2016

Country love songs....


It’s funny how much music can bring you back to a certain time, place or person.  Driving to work this morning, a song came on the radio that took me back to this one perfect (or seemingly perfect) moment and I felt like all of a sudden there was a rock on my chest.  

There is the starry-eyed dreamer part of me that wants to believe that all of those happy moments with JC were real but then there is the hurt, possibly jaded part of me that is trying to make peace with the fact that perhaps it was all in my imagination. I’ve tried for so long to suppress that die-hard romantic side of me - the side that wants the kind of love as in a country love song.  I thought it was fate that we found our way back to each other, now at a time where the paths of our lives seemed to be on the same track.  The right-brained idealist who thought that it was a sign that this was meant to be - that our lives kept colliding because we were destined to care for each other, that we were opposites, attracted to love the differences in each other. That where he struggled with relationships, I was there to bring that out of him. 

There is this image in my head of John Cusack in Say Anything – standing outside the window of the girl he loves, holding his ghetto blaster over his head blaring “In Your Eyes”.  I suppose I dream of that kind of love – I want someone who would fight for me, someone who wouldn’t readily just walk away. Someone who wanted to talk things through and figure them out rather than give up as it seems most men I have loved do.  I don’t need lots of expensive gifts or big grand gestures but every so often I do think of how romantic it would be to have someone so genuinely sure that they love me, that they would stand in the cold playing our song and beckon me outside to dance with them.  There is a part of me that wonders why it is that no one has ever fought for me.  No one has ever been so in love with me that they would plan something so elaborate in hopes to capture my heart.  Maybe it just isn’t true.  Maybe it doesn’t happen.  I think seeing how kind and sweet JC is made me believe that perhaps that kind of love really was out there.  I had this dream the other night of it being Christmas Eve and him pulling up outside of my sister's house, playing “Die a Happy Man” from the car radio and asking me to dance with him in the snow, finally ready for us to be together.  I know things like that don’t really happen but oh what a sweet dream it was.  Maybe that’s why I am so sad today – being now awake and realizing that it’s all in my head, that he doesn’t want me or want us.  That it isn’t just a need for him to finish this training or learn how to let someone care for him.  I need to come to terms with the fact that it’s me that he doesn’t want.  That what we shared is over and I need to let it go.  I need to stop hoping.  I just need to be grateful that I somehow learned to open my heart and hopefully one day I will be brave enough to try again.

You often hear the statement that hindsight is 20/20 - today this feels true to me.  It's Day 19 of the Challenge and I have spent over 20 hours on my mat in the past three weeks.  Every muscle in my body both hurts and feels great at the same time.  My find feels clearer yet still a bit blurry.  It's hard to believe that the month of November has almost already passed. Lately, I've been pondering the idea of 'perspective' and how sometimes you have to step back from something in order to see it more clearly. 

In looking at all of this I realize that yes, we did go from “are we dating?” to a “couple” quickly due to J’s first accident.  It was what, less than a week from our first kiss to me tending his wounds? We easily fell into a duo roll when he needed help after being hurt and when trying to get ready for Gma’s party.  It seemed to steamroll after that and I think on both of our parts.  As much as we tried to keep going slow they naturally progressed and we are both to blame for that.  I held back my questions and tried to keep things peripheral so as not to push him or put pressure on. I think back and miss those nights during the first few months of just sitting on the couch talking, telling stories and getting to know each other deeper.  It’s felt like the beginning again over the past few weeks and a part of me wishes that it means we can start again.  That we could go back to the days of learning more about the other's hopes and dreams - hearing their story. Can we go back to going slow? Is that even an option or has he moved on? 

Maybe I need to stop fooling myself and accept that there could be someone else that he desires.  Maybe there is another person who he’d rather wake up next to or someone who makes him happier than I did.  Someone who is more serious or less quirky; more graceful and less clumsy.  Maybe I just wasn’t enough or maybe I was too much.  Maybe I never will be either.  All I know is I can only be me.  I spent way too many years compromising myself and sacrificing what I wanted thinking that it didn’t matter.  I want someone who would proudly share that they are with me – someone who wants to walk into a party with me on their arm. Someone who wants to tell everyone that I am 'his girl'.  I want someone who appreciates that if I love you, it’s with all my heart.  As hard as it may be to accept now, I need perspective and reality over romantic wishes.  I need to appreciate the value of what I have learned through opening my heart again and move forward. 

I made it back to Sunday family dinner this past weekend – admittedly I have not been able to face them after this breakup.  Bringing JC into our family was a big thing for me – I haven’t brought anyone I dated home since, well Tim and that was 16 years ago! Over the past six years, I have barely even told anyone in my family when I was even dating.  I certainly haven’t allowed them to see that I had fallen for someone.  There aren’t many boundaries in our family so I knew questions would be many and I just didn’t really have the answers, nor could I talk about it without crying so I just avoided the situation.  I do love how protective they all are, I guess that I partially why I’ve always been so guarded with matters of the heart.  They only met him the few times but they fell for JC too – I think seeing me happy again filled all their hearts with joy.  They wanted to welcome him into our family. They wanted to love him too.

Looking back I see what I would have done differently if I now had the chance. But I also know that how things unfolded was authentic to what I felt in that moment.  Maybe I do just have to step back and let go and accept that this wasn’t my Say Anything kind of love.  I need to be grateful that, for the first time in many years, I opened my heart in a true and vulnerable kind of way.  It may feel broken now but eventually it will feel even stronger.  I may have fallen but I will rise again.  There may be days where a song brings me back to tears and that’s ok too.  Because the only way to find love is to open my heart and as much as I say I will never do this again, deep down I know I will.  In time, that perspective will set in. 

15 November 2016

beautiful Tuesdays....

Today is Day 11 and my intention for today is to stay present.  This is part of my intention most days to be honest because more often than not, we are looking ahead of ourselves.  We are preparing for the weekend or the next holiday, we are being proactive about the next step in our lives and looking forward to the next occasion.  We don't often just think about what I great day it is today.  

Preparing for the Holiday Walk this weekend has left me feeling like we are again rushing into the next season, although I know it's the way things go in the world of retail.  I am excited for the holidays and all the love and magic that seem to be ever-present.  I feel like I keep nesting at home to get ready for the season of hibernation.  There's a part of me still toying with the idea of moving to a smaller space but for now, I just want to make home a nice, cozy space.    

Taking a few minutes to go for a walk on my lunch today and I was reminded just how beautiful fall days are and how the sun seems to glow just a little brighter when it dances off all the orange, yellow and red leaves.  The breeze has a slight chill but the warmth is still in the air. All I wanted to do was just put my face up to the sky and twirl around! At that moment I just wanted to enjoy every beautiful sense that was around me and not think ahead, not worry about the past and just be

The intention in Sarah's class last night brought up the idea of impermanence and how truly the only constant thing in our life is change.  Nothing remains the same and by accepting that we allow ourselves to enjoy things as they come.  We can always look ahead down the path of where we are going but not so far in that we miss the little things along the journey of staying present.  We all learn from what is behind us, from our experiences and lessons but the important thing is not to get caught up in either direction.  To appreciate each moment, each season, every stage of relationships and even each day of this current challenge.  We all have moments of regret or things that we wish we could change and I think that is normal.  What we have to do is simply remember that we can't live there - we can't go back as much as we wish that we could.  We take those experiences and keep moving forward.  We are stronger from each time we have been broken.  We grow from each time that we fall.  

So today, I look out my office window at the sunshine and I count it within my blessings that I am here to enjoy the beauty of this fall day.  I am grateful for the fact that even though my heart hurt yesterday I got to my mat and felt strong and alive afterward.  I am thankful to be halfway through this challenge and sharing so many great moments with a tribe of people who are loving & accepting of me.  In this very moment I choose happy and I choose to be ok with the impermanence of it all, trusting that truly what is meant to be will be and where I am meant to be I will find my way. 

14 November 2016

Supermoon & no sleep

No matter how tired I am, during the full moon phase this gal never gets a good nights sleep. The past few nights I have been in bed, exhausted by 9:30pm but then my brain starts racing. I try to listen to music, I try to write, I put on a movie on my ipad so I have something to consciously block out and fall asleep to... None of it worked last night.  It's not even noon and I would give anything to close the door to my area and put my head on my desk for a quick nap. This is perhaps my disclaimer for this post - it may not make sense but I just need to start to write to clear my mind. 

Today is the 10th day of the 21 Day Challenge - my body feels tired and my heart hurts today.  I am trying very hard to stay present however it's not coming easy.  Today I feel sad and I want to hear JC's voice say it's all ok as he wraps his arms around me.  Today I miss him and I miss us but I am hoping that by acknowledging it, I can let it go.   I suppose that this too will fade as more time passes by.  But today he's who I still want.  Today the hurt part of me wants to say that I am never going to open up to anyone again because this uncoupling part sucks too much. The letting go and trying not to have false hopes is hard.  Accepting that he doesn't miss me or us is hardest of all. Today is just a hard day and I don't want to face it on my own. 

Eight years ago my life changed - losing my oldest friend whom I have forever referred to as my brother. Iain has literally been in my life since we were born - every summer vacation, every birthday, every event in our lives were spent together.  We were obsessed with dinosaurs and the planets - every Sunday I think we begged our parents to take us to Cranbrook.  Our camping adventures always included a dinosaur dig and constantly looking for fossils in the rocks.  I paved the way with Bob & Claudia when it came to University antics lol - every Sunday dinner spent recounting the week's activities. He loved being a dad to Emma and would often just gush through our phone calls about how great parenthood was.  Hearing my dad say the words "Iain died" had me in disbelief.  He was 28 years old - he must be mistaken.  I remember standing at the back of the room frozen, unable to go to his casket until Claudia literally dragged me by the hand saying that we would do it together.  


I've tried to take something out of this tragedy in order to move forward - in hopes that by learning from this experience, would make it less in vain.  Our family began to always say I Love You after losing Iain - phone calls, texts, in person - we decided to love big because life can truly change in an instant.  I never want anyone in my life to ever question if my love for them was real. Wherever I go, I do go with all my heart.  I suppose part of that is also the reason for my tradition of New Years Notes - taking that time to reach out to people who impacted my life that year in order to tell them just how much they mean to me. It's what I asked everyone to do today to honour him - to take a moment to tell someone in their life just why they are great and how they are loved. Today me meditation app noted that the "biggest obstacle to headspace is wanting things to be different than they are."  So, in my effort to move forward and accept that things did not work out I need to accept that we wanted different things. There's a possibility that maybe he wants someone else. I need to let go of that feeling of safety and comfort that I had laying next to him and find it within myself because as much as I want things to be differently, I need to accept that they are over.  I need to heal my heart, remember all the things I have learned from this and stay open to loving someone again.  I refuse to let the fear come back in.  I can only love the way that I know how to - it may be big and a little all over the place but that is me.  I've come a long way to get to right here and even if this relationship didn't go where I thought it would, I am grateful that I didn't hold back and that I took the chance on love again.  Every person, every moment is a lesson and all we can do is accept them for what they are and keep moving forward.  

Living each day to the fullest and loving with all my heart is the least I can do to honour Iain's memory.  So brother, wherever you may be I hope that you are with Mr. Ron and that you can feel our love still living for you.  When it's dark, I try to find you in the stars shining down on us. I see you in Emma's smile. My heart will always have space for you.  There will never be a time that I see a dinosaur without thinking about you and a smile will grace my heart remembering you.  xo 

08 November 2016

forgiveness....


  
This week starts the 21-day Challenge at the yoga studio.  At the kick-off we were asked to tell the person next to us what we were hoping to accomplish during the next three weeks and they chose a word for us as our vow.  I was given the word Peace and though Tasia chose it without really knowing everything I was thinking in my head, I think it is definitely fitting.  

Tonight in Yin I thought about forgiveness and how quickly I am able to look past things in other people and yet I am so hard on myself.  I realize that I need to let go of this feeling of unworthiness or failure and realize that this was my choice.  Months ago in Kent's moksha 60 class was when I made the conscious decision to accept my own fears and open my heart.  I knew that by doing so I was allowing for the possibility of having my heart broken again.   I decided that I was committed to allowing love into my life again.  I made the choice to reveal myself and all my imperfections to JC and jump in because you can't allow love to happen if you are always holding back.  Perhaps that is where I went wrong - seeing as I am the one now missing him and wondering if all those great moments were only happy to me.  We are imperfect people just trying to find a partner whose imperfections balance ours.  I knew that there was a possibility that forever wouldn't be in the cards for us but I was still willing to try.  I made the decision not to let my fear trump my ideal that love would be worth it.  When I love someone, I love hard.  That person will always mean something to me, even if we're no longer together and JC is no exception to that.  When I decided not to let fear get in the way, I promised to give it my all, to be my true self and to care for him as though we could last forever.  Perhaps I should have been more guarded but it was so lovely to think positive and look forward to more moments together.  

I've been very hard on myself the past two weeks - wondering where I went wrong or what it was about me that he couldn't love.  I've missed the simplest things like making him laugh or feeling his arm reach back to pull me closer while we slept.  I am trying to accept that even if they didn't mean the same to him, that all the little things I cherish from our time together can still be happy memories.  As much as I would love to know what parts of our time together warmed his heart, I accept that I probably will never hear them from him.  

I realize that I want someone who is proud to be with me.  I don't need grand gestures or fancy gifts or love shouted from the rooftops but I do want someone who proudly tells those in his life that I am his girl.  Learning that people he rides with 2-3 times a week had no clue I existed, to the point that one of the girls actually thought that they had some sort of connection, makes me realize that even if I was all in, he had one foot out.  So I forgive myself for again, believing that this happiness was two-sided when in fact, it could have only been me.  I forgive myself for allowing my heart to be broken again.  Forgiveness for allowing my family to welcome him and want to love him too, only to be turned down.  And to be honest I forgive him for not letting me fully in, because I believe that none of this was done with malice intention.  

My fortune from dinner last weekend was "Tell the people that you love, that you do" and I hope that I will continue to keep my heart open because I'd rather love and lose than never love at all. I realize that even if JC isn't meant to me mine forever I am hopeful that, at the very least, after our time together he can see that he deserves love.  That as much as it's possibly hard to accept, that he actually deserves to be cared for and not always the one responsible for everyone else.  Sometimes love isn't logical or an equation that can be rationalized.  Sometimes, someone just makes you happy, challenges you to grow and loves you for your heart. 

So here we are on day four of the challenge and I am beginning to feel more at peace knowing that perhaps I love a little too hard and I maybe give of myself a little too much but in the end, I would much rather the people in my life be certain of my love for them than anything else.  Perhaps a part of attaining peace begins with both forgiveness and gratitude.  Maybe we all have to take a bit of time to forgive ourselves and love ourselves in order to allow others to care for us.  I keep trying to look at all of this with gratitude because this was the first non-toxic relationship that has truly made me happy in well, a very long time.  With JC I wanted to be a better person, I wanted to learn about things that made his mind tick, I wanted to share adventures and experiencesI am grateful for how safe I felt in his arms and how at home I felt in his space.  I suppose I really could have missed all the heartache but then, I'd have had to miss "the dance" and that was the very best part of it all.