247 We All Have A Choice

Are we functioning at the level of Human Animal or Human Spirit? Although that may not be a choice, noticing is.

Repeated everywhere I turn, we all have a choice.

When I was searching for the exact words of Brene Brown’s daughter in the Netflix special (that I did not find, and was too lazy to leap through the audio to pull it out), I did find this.

“When we make the choice to dare greatly, we sign up to get our asses kicked. We can choose courage or we can choose comfort, but we can’t have both. Not at the same time.”

In Alison Armstrong’s course on Dominant Drivers, she reiterates a concept that runs through all of her material. Are we functioning at the level of Human Animal or Human Spirit? Although that may not be a choice, noticing is. And when we discover our Dominant Driver, or pinpoint a driver that is controlling a response in the moment, we do have a choice. Once we are aware, the possibilities open. We are capable of shifting.

Amber Kuileimailani Bonici has been sending emails on choice all week, all year. Saying yes, or choosing the “holy no.” Taking on energy, transmuting energy, or choosing to be in personal energy. Taking action or giving action.

We might feel caught or like the loop never ends, but we do have choice. It might be easiest to see in the smallest of moments. A sip of water or no sip of water. When I think of that choice, it is so obvious that there is no right or wrong in this moment. Either one will do. It is the string of moments that seem to have a greater impact. I chose to sip the water. It is important to my body over the long run. But it was merely a choice in the moment. I can pick up a new choice and move forward on that stream at any point.

My action choices are currently mostly in use of “free time”, or directing the required actions into choices (are they required?). I am not an expert. I need to require myself to do art journaling or set up time to finish my Peace Shield. It does not come naturally.

I need to rethink how I write and think this through. I choose to drink water. I choose to write and express. I choose to put an hour into the creation of the shield. I choose to spend time outside today, walking or gardening. I choose to elevate my consciousness. That’s a lot.

person walking on sand
A choice to walk outside Photo by Daria Shevtsova on Pexels.com

Maybe just one small thing in this moment. Or two. I choose to write. I choose to sip the water. Success! Celebrating success.

246 Snapshots of Consciousness

I can’t get control of my world. I can’t drink enough water. I can’t eat enough perfect food, green smoothies, light proteins, beet juice. Pain hops around as chemo tackles not only its goal, but a myriad of other body components. I spin out. My body lives a world that is spinning out of control.

I listen to a lot of inspirational speakers. They come in the forms of mentors, classes and Youtubes. When I am realistic, the inspirational speakers are also the people I speak with, my friends, family, and everyone that I am exposed to in the medical world.

Something I have noticed is the echo. The same words and concepts resonate. I will hear a theme, a kind of chorus, that repeats itself over the week. I feel like it is Spirit trying to make a profound point. “Look here, over here. You haven’t looked closely enough. Do it again. Look here.”

In Brené Brown’s Netflix Special (A Call to Courage), she shares an experience where her daughter lives a perfect moment, and then wants to take a mental snapshot so she can come back to its perfection. We are all being called to do that.

The theme I am repeating is Elevation of Consciousness. Actually, we are all repeating it. The problem with that focus is that the challenge of elevation comes with a mental call to human downfall. Pain. Media. Societal pressure and hardship (the political situation, financial challenges, personal social wobbling). When the human conditions make the mind spin out, I am called to realize that this is the greatest version of unconsciousness! I need to take control and elevate. We all need to be responsible. We need to bring the entirety of our world up. If we don’t, who will.

This is going to be an ongoing echo. Elevate. Keep elevating. Take the snapshots that Brené’s daughter suggests. Revisit them whenever darkness is spinning out.

I can’t get control of my world. I can’t drink enough water. I can’t eat enough perfect food, green smoothies, light proteins, beet juice. Pain hops around as chemo tackles not only its goal, but a myriad of other body components. I spin out. My body lives a world that is spinning out of control.

And as suggested by so many situations and words of “inspirational speakers” of this week, I can be in the spin out and watch it. And at the same time I hear Consciousness guide my mind to elevate.

mother carrying her daughter
A baby’s laughter can be a Snapshot of Consciousness Photo by Katie E on Pexels.com

I think, “I am laughter,” and I see the scene where baby Nyasha laughs ecstatically as she sits in Grandma F’s lap. I see myself at a table of teen Girl Scouts, playing Balderdash, reading Kayleen’s words. Kayleen is hysterical. I nearly fell off the bar stool… I couldn’t control my own ecstacy.

I think, “I am love.” The snapshot of the kid’s weddings, the signing of the Ketuba, the science experiments – both sand and chemical, and the joy and connection of the participants. I see the random Youtube, where the people adopted a dog that had been in an adoption facility since he was a few weeks old, 461 days total. He was shy, skittish, not socialized. With a week, he was a family dog living a real life, totally evolved in personality, because of love.

Snapshots of consciousness: a shy dog that totally evolved in personality, because of love.

I think, “I am Spirit.” The stories of Reiki journeys, retold through Amisha’s visions spring to life. I am held by Mother Mary, carried by unicorns, connected to Karolynne/my ancestors/the further generations in a Tree of Life on the hill.

I picture Conrad and Nyasha at the Earth Sanctuary, searching for my tree, taking a photo of the “memorial stake”.

I see the fear and evolution in my body shaking in Kundalini energy.

I look up to a tree far ahead of my path, leaves parted in the perfect shape of a heart.

I revision a moment on First Beach, the moon rising and sun setting over the horizon in a bizarre and beautiful simultaneous harmony.

brown and green grass field during sunset
Sunset can be a Snapshot of Consciousness Photo by Jonathan Petersson on Pexels.com

My consciousness shifts. The human stuff is still there. I am still talking, or wallowing, or experiencing. But my higher self is with the snapshots, in the eye of the storm, bringing myself to resonance. We are all THAT. We can continue to list the “I am” statements, like we balance or meditate, collecting the current and historical snapshots in positive moments to be relived when we need them most. Humanly, “I am the highest potential of myself.” Spiritually, “I am consciousness.”

245 Ridiculous Grace-the Lost Article (from after the CT Scan)

Ridiculous grace. It is ridiculous grace that we took this breath, that we can feel the heartbeat, taste the water. It is ridiculous grace that I am on the planet today, typing, tasting, hearing, knowing

One thing about chemicals in the bloodstream, they certainly cause alternate awareness.  I am actively working to rinse the contrast dye and chemotherapy drugs from my system, yet they are altering me in a large way the past few days.

It’s probably better to avoid the world, and safer for the world, but I was out and about.  I wanted to re-send Amisha’s holiday note; it came back by some post office error, ready to arrive at a more timely alignment with Divinity.

I have also been preparing a bit for the people who surround Dad and his Hospice care, and wanted to get to that, knowing that they will be as affected in his death as we are.

And lastly, there was a need for me to seek a protein source and more liquid options for washing this medical stuff out, at this point, anything I am willing to swallow.  Water tastes disgusting.  How can water taste disgusting?  I love water. “Go with the flow and don’t judge,” I heard.  More empathy, more awareness of others.  I am learning.

On the road, the radio gave me political information for about three minutes before I had enough.  I switched over to Spirit, the Seattle based Christian station.  Kwami doesn’t like lyrics.  I find guidance in words, deep information that leads me to insights and answers.

Ridiculous Grace.  Two words that came from a Tauren Wells song, Known.  I burst into tears (not in public, in the car, the public came through my adventure safely).  Ridiculous grace. It is ridiculous grace that we took this breath, that we can feel the heartbeat, taste the water.  It is ridiculous grace that I am on the planet today, typing, tasting, hearing, knowing.  

And why I was crying is that I saw how important each person in my world is, so clearly, how perfect.  And I just wanted them to see through my eyes, to know themselves this way, as the ridiculous grace of this moment.  And my eyes and heart are crying again.

I am grateful for Grace, Ridiculous Grace, that shares this picture, this Truth, this love.  Thank you for being my ridiculous grace!

244 Why?

There are bigger fish to fry. There are more quandaries into why.

Why? It is a question that has come up in my classes and mentoring groups repeatedly this week. It isn’t the why of blame or criticism. It is the why of self analysis.

Amber (creator of Woman Unleashed) discussed it. She used it as an analysis of action. If I look deeply into a repeated action, and really look at why I do it, eventually I hit emotion. She said it could take twenty layers of questions, and in the depth is self discovery.

What do I want to know about myself? What do I want to change or shift? What needs to be discovered?

I am extremely irritated with my car insurance company. It’s pretty petty. They want all of the particular information on the people who live in my house, who they are insured by, at what level, driving records. To me, this is ludicrous.

woman sitting in vehicle
I am extremely irritated with my car insurance company .Photo by Cleyton Ewerton on Pexels.com

I taught driver’s ed. My insurance is maximized! Apparently, Pemco could be paid more if the analysis believes others should be “added”. I am irritated enough to consider shifting companies after nearly forty years of success and appreciation for this one.

Why? How deep do I need to go? If I look inside my thought process, why does this “piss me off”. It really does.

Why? All of us, the members of this household, are responsible. Most of us are overwhelmingly insured. The outlier (who has more moderate, normal levels of car insurance) would never be behind my wheel, never. Kwami, who does drive my car, has equal insurance to my own, from the same company.

Refocus… why? We are doing nothing wrong. We are not cheating the system. The implication is that there is an issue, an accusation. Privacy, they are inside of my personal life, picking at the details.

Why? This angers me because… I don’t know if there is an originating point or story. I remember a time in Fifth grade where I did a really good job on an assignment, and a classmate took the paper and presented it as her own. I definitely feel the burn of “doing the right thing” (in my mind), and then being scrutinized. Guilty until proven innocent.

I could clean that out in other scenarios. In high school, my best friend’s parents constantly accused me of being a horrible influence. Although I probably did provoke rebellion, I was likely one of the best influences in her world, from a parental standpoint anyway.

Why? I want to be seen for who I am. I do not want to prove my innocence. I want to be appreciated for my responsible actions.

This is a universal irritation. Many people in our country feel irritated, invaded by the government, watched, over controlled. (They really should consider Alexa and their cell phones first, but whatever.) Perhaps they are experiencing the same “why”. I can deepen my empathy a bit, try to understand others from my own window of awareness.

Perhaps this isn’t the deepest use of the topic, but I did gain an ounce of self understanding. When I call the insurance representative, I can express my disgust without yelling. Or perhaps, since the person on the phone has nothing to do with corporate policy and procedure (and probably isn’t paid enough to be my counselor), I will just politely provide information, and let it go.

There are bigger fish to fry. There are more quandaries into why.

243 The First Frog

Our little spring sprouts are pensively peaking out above the surface, checking, deciding if the groundhog will keep us low and slow.

Predawn. He is out there, calling for a mate. The first frog.

He is quite literally the first, because I have never heard a frog on this property. This little guy may be croaking for a couple of months before he finds that “perfect someone”. Is it springtime? The calendar reads January.

green frog
The first frog Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

I have been pulling weeds, so many weeds. In the last few years, January bodes as “crunch month”. The bulbs rise above the surface and the young poppies crack the soil in light chartreuse. The race begins.

When we wrap up the fall garden, it is NOT ready for spring. This year I left most of the fucias alone, leafing and blooming. There is still a bloomer in the backyard. The hummingbirds use them as food. The winter never conclusively stated, “I am here”. The plants have been indecisive.

We have been indecisive. We are all pulling weeds, looking at the world, our lives, and making decisions about what stays and what goes. The process of 2020 was not a one year purge. The ’20s, the roaring ’20s are shifting us.

Our little spring sprouts are pensively peaking out above the surface, checking, deciding if the groundhog will keep us low and slow.

bunch of bright blooming flowers
A beautiful glass vase of tulip bulbsPhoto by Maria Orlova on Pexels.com

Jan gifted me a beautiful glass vase of tulip bulbs. They are indoors. Inches of height have emerged each day. The rush to bloom.

No rush. We are more like the outdoor plants. A cold snap could take us down.

Spend time on your roots. Continue to look. To ponder. To weed. Real growth, growth that changes our lives, changes the world, takes time.

242 Grateful

There are many truths coming to the surface, in the nation, and all around the world. People are opening their eyes, facing their fears, and realizing the depth of disturbance past actions may have caused. This is not finger pointing, unless the finger is acknowledging personal responsibility.

A pointing finger means there is another step to take.

We are moving into a time of action, mutual action, where we work together to rebuild the world. It is literal, in the case of the environment, of damage we have done, and the physical labor that may be required.

human hands forming heart on white surface
Build a world of compassion together Photo by ATC Comm Photo on Pexels.com

It is figurative, in the situations of planning and seeing the potential in situations, and voting for the course that brings the nation and the world to higher heights in the realm of consciousness.

We are blessed, blessed by the divergence in the path. I am grateful for the observations and growth. I am grateful for the peace and patience I have felt as calm has been restored on stormy waters. I am grateful for today, and tomorrow, and the years to come. We are blessed.

241 Zen and the Art of Bonsai

It takes about a week of staring and trimming. Bonsai, the staring part. Nothing should overlap. The structural shape is key.

No. No mini bonsai here. I feel like I would kill one of the complex plants in the blink of an eye. One has to be a serious gardener to take on that challenge.

Somehow, orchids think that this house is the bomb. They bloom and re bloom, growing the craziest of flowers. There is one that looks like the plant from the Little Shop of Horrors. You can almost hear it call out, “Feed me Seymour, come on and feed me.” It has frightening spots and colors, and the blooms look like mouths that are ready to consume a limb. Visit at your own risk!

As far as bonsai, the Japanese maple in the front yard comes the closest. It is, however, huge. And it does require the “bonsai touch” for pruning. Repeatedly, the people who come to accomplish the big jobs on the property say, “That tree is the centerpiece of the property.” No pressure. It’s three quarters of an acre. One shrub that stands six feet tall and about 12 feet across is the absolute centerpiece. Don’t prune it incorrectly. Don’t kill it. Love the tree.

selective focus photography of green leafed bonsai
A Bonsai Plant Photo by Zulian Yuliansyah on Pexels.com

I have pruned it every winter. Last year, the spring brought it in bushy and leafy. That is NOT the goal with a bonsai, or a Japanese Maple.

It takes about a week of staring and trimming. Bonsai, the staring part. Nothing should overlap. The structural shape is key. Minimizing the leafing creates the see through effect. It is an art form. And it is a love form. Every rain free day, I sculpted for hours.

Loving nature through interaction. It is one of my favorite games. It does not come in the form of flowers or plantings or pots. But my love of nature does include staring, staring and shaping. Shaping the nature of “what is” into the most beautiful and functional way of being. Zen and the Art of Bonsai.

240 Celebrating Diversity

The Pacific Northwest is blessed. We enjoy diversity every day.

I feel grateful to live in a world of diversity. Saidi invited me to Kampala (Uganda) many years back, and although it was not a time I could travel, I started to investigate. I looked at pictures of the city, the airport, the people. It would be a beautiful place to visit one day… and I would definitely stand out! I am very white. The people of Kampala are not.

Passengers screened on arrival in Entebe Airport in Uganda February 14 2020 Courtesy news.com.au
Mostly Black Passengers screened on arrival in Entebe Airport in Uganda February 14 2020 Courtesy news.com.au

What was exceptionally striking in the photos was the airport. Because of Nyasha and Shante’s travels, I have been blessed with a lot of time at the Seattle hub. People arrive and depart from all over the world, and diversity in skin color and language are obvious. Most of the times at the airport, the medley of people has not declared a majority. But the photos of the Ugandan airport showed a sea of similarity. Because I have only known International Airports, I noticed!

In this Tuesday, Aug. 11, 2015 photo, Shizu Sugiura holds a "End of the Line" sign to help travelers in a security line that wraps around behind her at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, in Seattle. When it comes to counting passengers, Sea-Tac is the fastest growing of the top 20 airports in the United States, which is putting a strain on services and creating long lines at the security check points. A record 4 million passengers passed through the airport in June. When the numbers are counted for July, they’ll likely top June’s record and August is always a busy month of the year. The picture shows the diversity of races at the Sea-TAC Airport. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson) (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
In this Tuesday, Aug. 11, 2015 photo, Shizu Sugiura holds a “End of the Line” sign to help travelers in a security line that wraps around behind her at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, in Seattle. When it comes to counting passengers, Sea-Tac is the fastest growing of the top 20 airports in the United States, which is putting a strain on services and creating long lines at the security check points. A record 4 million passengers passed through the airport in June. When the numbers are counted for July, they’ll likely top June’s record and August is always a busy month of the year. The picture shows the diversity of races at the Sea-TAC Airport. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

The Pacific Northwest is blessed. We enjoy diversity every day. It could simply be the foods we choose, with restaurants in a wide variety of cultural spins and choices (like vegan), or schools and colleges that are taught in languages other than English. The area has spaces of acceptance for a wide range of individuality, whether a person was born to or later chose their approach to the world.

The spiritual and religious variety is vast. With such a creative Source, the demand to reach every individual internally requires options. We have a wide variety of churches and groups for Divine inspiration. Since many people find their connection in nature, experiencing the depth of God outdoors, our region is perfect. We have it all, mountains to hike, waves to surf, snow to ski.

I appreciate this life, this region, and the move toward expansive acceptance. I know that we can continue to grow (and that we still need to), and that thought delights me as well. Thank you to all those who have come before us, who have led the way, fought for the rights and diversity that we live. I am blessed by your work. We all are!

239 Wisdom in the Prayers

The Matrix is glitching, the choice. The red pill. Forced down our throats because we have rejected it for too long.

There is a balance. We feel the shackles that the lies have formed. They are around our ankles, holding us firmly to the planet, pulling us to the earth’s core, to our graves. Man made iron. The scales of liberty, deformed and inoperative.

That which has been hidden pours like the overzealous rains. 700 documents of UFO information released by the CIA. Pleas for impeachment and the 25th Amendment, asking for the members of government to react to Truth, to stop backing untruth. “700 Indigenous People slaughtered”, marking the governmental reason for the original declaration of “Thanksgiving” as a US holiday. Facts replacing illusion, the truth unveiling itself to the masses.

brown wooden table with candles and incense
Photo by Elly Fairytale on Pexels.com

The Matrix is glitching, the choice. The red pill. Forced down our throats because we have rejected it for too long.

It can be too heavy and too hard. We feel it in our bones. The tears pour unnaturally. Media drowns our thoughts and our minds. Darkness, depression.

There is wisdom in the prayers, in the meditations and the light. A rosary. A mala and mantra. Creative works. Ho’oponopono. I reach for them all. There is wisdom. It is beyond us, in the higher realms. We must reach for our practices and connect. Hope is there. Relief is there. Peace is in the hands of the Eternal.

238 Shifting the Baseline

The politics of the nation echoes the need to be regenerated. With the new year comes a vast opportunity to emerge united, to manifest a better life. Housing, food, and healthcare, basics for the masses.

A new year always asks for a new baseline. People like to make resolutions. I don’t think I have ever used that term for things that I seek to do. No one seems to be successful with a “resolution”. Traditionally, exercise equipment becomes a clothes hanger before February.

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Photo by Polina Kovaleva on Pexels.com No one seems to be successful with a “resolution”.

So many things ask to be regenerated. My financial sheet, the banking, and the way I address the medical challenges and diet. The ostomy is undergoing a supply revamp, as it shifts and changes with a hernia. We had to buy new bed sheets, mundane. My computer drown (to death) and the new laptop has a lot of those “original bugs” to work out. The examples are mounting, and overwhelming, and frankly, somewhat ridiculous.

I feel like I am in a forest fire, like Elsa in Frozen, working to put out fire after fire. For each that is quelled, two more arise. I can lower their impact, keep the size down, but none subside. They are small because of my efforts, but continue to grow in number. Endless.

The politics of the nation echoes the need to be regenerated. With the new year comes a vast opportunity to emerge united, to manifest a better life. Housing, food, and healthcare, basics for the masses. Addressing all people as human, as valuable, and reflecting that in policy and policing. The earth. Rejuvenation of a tired education structure. Respect and support for small businesses. So much more. We have the capacity to be strong and exemplary. I can see the potential. It is bright and exciting, waiting on the horizon.

Yet, the apparent beginning burns old structures. I wish it was less literal, as I watch the heated battles and painful images. They are the forest fires that clear the ground for rebirth. The aftermath leaves the ashen rubble, the stench of smoke and death. The new growth promises bright colors and tender shoots, the fluffy bunnies, scurrying squirrels, and baby deer returning from places unknown. Patience. Time. Compassion. We can do this.

Gratitude for goals achieved in the previous year.