Life is hard Sometimes

>> Sunday, December 19, 2010

Today was really, really hard.

I don't know how to be a parent sometimes.  I feel like he needs absolutely every ounce of my energy and attention, and I don't have any left for the rest of life.  And I'm not talking about me sulking because I don't get 'me time (I'll get to that in a minute),' I'm talking about necessities like sleeping and showering and eating.  And I'm not sure what to do.

My partner's sick again.  We think it's bronchitis, which necessarily leaves more of the housework and child care to me.  And I just feel--drained.

On top of that, I feel like I'm missing out on my own spiritual practice.  Lately I haven't been going to the Unity church (which I am newly a member of) because either I'm too tired to get up, or I don't want to disturb my partner because he's not feeling well.  And I feel empty.  I just made a spiritual commitment to this community, and I can't even show up.  But I'm trying to remember that these everyday circumstances--the circumstances of my life--are opportunities for me spiritually too.  I know that life is for living, not just sitting around and reading about spirituality and religion.  So there's got to be room within my life to live spiritually.  I just have to figure out how.

A blurry shot of Owen's Christening

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Abhyasa and Vairagya

>> Monday, December 13, 2010

So I subscribe to a yoga listserv which sends out weekly videos.   Most of them are instructional guides on how to come into a particular pose, but this week's was on the philosophical concepts of effort and detachment.

Annie Carpenter Discusses Abhyasa and Vairagya (Effort and Detachment): TerraFlow Video 29 from YogaEarth on Vimeo.

I'm really comfortable with these ideas, but they tend to be in conflict (at least in my head) with some of the Unity principles that I follow.  Focus on the good.  Choose to think of the desired outcome, and that will call it into existence.   (A little clarifying piece:  I mean that what we focus on is our reality.  And not because well call it forth out of nothing (though I believe we can), but because we are expressing that reality as though it is there already.  It makes no difference whether it has manifested or not, because we are manifesting the consequences as though it has.)

I'm not quite sure these concepts can be reconciled--how to live with equanimity, and how to bring into expression the outcome I desire.

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Breath of Heaven

So last week at church the soloist sang the song "Breath of Heaven."  I'd never heard it before but it floored me.  It was exactly how I felt carrying Owen.  Exactly.  


Here's a video of the song.  The dancing isn't what I want to share, but the way the singer performs it, and the music itself.  It was co-written by Amy Grant, I guess, but I don't really like the way she sings it, so this video has a singer that sings it pretty perfectly.  Pay attention to the lyrics and the music.



And here are the lyrics:
I have traveled many moonless nights
Cold and weary with a babe inside
And I wonder what I've done
Holy Father you have come
And chosen me now
To carry your son


I am waiting in a silent prayer
I am frightened by the load I bear
In a world as cold as stone
Must I walk this path alone
Be with me now
Be with me now


Breath of heaven
Hold me together
Be forever near me
Breath of heaven


Breath of heaven
Lighten my darkness
Pour over me your holiness
For you are holy
Breath of heaven


Do you wonder as you watch my face
If a wiser one should have had my place
But I offer all I am
For the mercy of your plan
Help me be strong
Help me be

Breath of heaven
Lighten my darkness
Pour over me your holiness
For you are holy
Breath of heaven




I know it might be presumptuous to say I felt this way, since the song's about Mary carrying Jesus, but it really fit.  I really felt this way.  

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Interior Design

>> Sunday, December 5, 2010

I often am at odds with both my partner & best friend about how to decorate our shared living spaces. Each of us want very different things. This photo represents pretty much the feeling that I'm going for, if not the specific imagery itself.

The Chapel of St Ignatius
I sincerely doubt Colleen or Brant will ever be okay with our house giving off this vibe.  Nonetheless, here it is.

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Condolences

>> Friday, December 3, 2010

Seattle University lost a long-time staff member and holy man today, Fr Gillis. I didn't work with him personally in my time there, but he was apparently loved by many.
I stumbled upon an open letter he wrote to the SU community last month, and it was very moving. So I wanted to post it here. It is so full of love and gratitude, it's pretty incredible. And I find myself lucky for having stumbled upon it.

Dear Friends,
Since the full knowledge of my cancer became known to everyone I have been overcome by the positive notes and visits and to a certain extent, the overwhelmingness shouldn't be surprising because I was bowled over by the realization of how much I am loved.
Part of the reason for feeling overwhelmed was also because I was realizing just how much I am loved – loved so deeply. (I am never surprised how good and beautiful you are, realizing that about myself was more difficult. But the two go together!) This confirms that when I am in touch with the Holy Spirit, I believe and act out of love.
It is not always easy to love ourselves. On the other hand, it is easy for me to love all of you. It isn't too tricky, because if you love other people, they'll love you back! My apostolic mission at S.U. has been to love other people. I open up a card and you would thank me for something I did – and you reminded me of it. But lovers don't keep score.
And just as we need to be reenergized or encouraged in the Holy Spirit in communal worship, retreats, and friendships, I have a few things to encourage you with:
Forgive one another. Mr. Thirty-two Search is ALWAYS moved to tears with people finding it in themselves to reconcile. That is at the center of our belief.
Take time to be with each other and to encourage each other. You can't build community at a distance. We all get busy but take time for one another because this is how we know we are loved.
Take care of yourself. I've learned a lot about health and a shout-out to all of my women friends 40 and over, please get a mammogram. Also, Fr. Mike lost weight and if he can do it, so can you!
In all of this, take heed St. John's call: Love one another.
Love, love, love,
Fr. Rog

This was taken from SU's alumni blog. Quite beautiful, and very moving.

Many blessings to Fr Gillis, his community, and to you.

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