42

For my 42nd birthday, I visited a hummingbird sanctuary and the Saguaro National Park in Tucson, Arizona.  I have made the commitment to find the magic in (my) life, to continuously feel connected to the beauty that surrounds me, and to unrestrictedly experience the abundance of the universe.  This is the greatest gift I can give myself.

 

The Little Boy Who Holds Magic

hummingbird boy

She saw in the little boy, Magic.

The kind of magic that reveals the secrets of life.

 

And she asked him,

What does the sun tell the flower

to make her open up?

 

And the boy told her,

The sun reflects her beauty

with his light, and she learns to

believe in herself.

 

She then asked,

How does the wind mold

the clouds into daydreams?

 

And he responded,

It whispers the dreams

people hold in their hearts.

 

Her curiosity grew.

How does the moon, even from so far away,

attract the ocean to her?

 

The boy explained,

At night, when the darkness weighs heavy

like a dream deferred,

she lifts the burden and soothes the fear.

 

She wanted to know more.

Why must the butterfly struggle

through the cocoon to fly?

 

The boy reminded her,

It is in the struggle that the butterfly

builds strength in her wings

affirming her determination to fulfill

her purpose.

 

How does the Evergreen find the courage

to survive the coldest winters and

parched summers?

 

He learns and grows wise. Understands the

parts of him he needs to strengthen and

transform.

 

Finally, she was enchanted with the boy’s

ability to attract hummingbirds, and had

to ask,

How do you get the hummingbirds

to trust you?

 

The greatest magic, and the most

noble answers you will find are held

in your heart. When it opens completely,

the hummingbird will come to

pollinate.

Decolonization

Who Am I,                                                                     Quien Soy,

Before I became modern?                                         Antes de ser moderna?

 

Before I was colonized, corporatized,                    Antes de que fui colonizada, corporatizada,

capitalized, commodified?                                       capitalizada, mercantilizada?

 

Who Am I,                                                                    Quien Soy,

before the ancestral wisdom                                   antes de que la sabiduría ancestral

in my DNA was                                                          en mi ADN fuera

genetically modified by                                            geneticamente modificada por

empirical evidence and theories?                           pruebas y teorías empíricas?

 

Who am I,                                                                     Quien Soy,

before the drumming                                                antes de que los tambores

of my Mother Land                                                    de mi Madre Tierra

was silenced by                                                            fueron silenciados por

relentless pistons of                                                    pistones implacables de

the greed machine?                                                     la máquina de la codicia?

 

I was born into                                                            Nací en

a world of busyness,                                                  un mundo de ocupaciones y preocupaciones,

fast-pace breathing;                                                  de respiracíon rápida;

 

A world of transactions                                            en un mundo de transacciones

in which individual benefits                                   en el que los beneficios individuales

crush the whole;                                                        aplastan el todo;

 

In which getting mine                                             En el que “conseguir lo mio”

becomes getting mined,                                         se convierte en ser minado,

bulldozed, and eroded;                                           arrasado, y erosionado;

 

Opened up and extracted                                       Abierto y extraído

until there is no more                                              hasta que no hay mas

to take.                                                                        que agarrar.

 

I was born into a world where                                Nací en un mundo donde

Who Am I?                                                                 Quien Soy?

is a checklist of                                                           es una lista de

accomplishments                                                      logros,

acquisitions and                                                        adquisiciones,

earnings.                                                                     y ganancias.

 

Who Am I,                                                                  Quien Soy,

before the river’s spirit                                            antes de que el espíritu del río

was dammed,                                                            fuera represado,

confined to believe                                                   confinado a creer

it would never rage again?                                      que nunca fluira con furor de nuevo?

 

Who Am I,                                                                 Quien Soy,

as I search through the debris                               mientras busco entre los escombros

of my ancestors’                                                       la fuerza de determinación

self-determination,                                                  de mis antepasados,

deconstructing the dominant                                deconstruyendo la historia

story in order to find                                               dominante para encontrar

the sovereign pieces                                                 las partes soberanas

of myself?                                                                   de mí misma?

 

Who Am I,                                                                  Quien Soy,

before borders were                                                  antes de que las fronteras

entrenched like                                                          fueran atrincheradas

gashes in the land,                                                    como heridas en la tierra

now infected with                                                     ahora infectadas con

-isms?                                                                          -ismos?

 

Who Am I,                                                                  Quien Soy,

before avalanches of concrete                                antes de que avalanchas de cemento

suffocated earth,                                                        asfixiarán la tierra,

oppressed her under                                                  la oprimierán bajo

the weight of                                                                el peso de

patriarchal pathology,                                               patología patriarchal,

and held her down                                                      y la sujetarán

against her will.                                                           contra su voluntad.

 

Who Am I,                                                                  Quien Soy,

before I was uprooted                                               antes de ser desarraigada

from the womb                                                           del vientre

of the land,                                                                  de la tierra,

implanted into servers                                              implantada en la red

and trafficked                                                              y traficada

through bandwidths?                                                por la banda de tecnología?

 

Who Am I,                                                                   Quien soy,

when Abuela                                                               cuando abuela

spoke the language                                                    hablaba el idioma

of the moon,                                                                de La Luna,

danced with Gray Wolves                                        bailaba con los Lobos Grises

under her light,                                                          bajo su luz,

and sculpted me                                                        y me moldeaba

in her shadows?                                                        en sus sombras?

 

Who Am I,                                                                Quien Soy,

when I was earth?                                                   cuando yo era tierra?

 

 

 

 

 

Slow down enough . . .

to follow the clouds

drifting by, caressing the

floor of the sky,

 

to hear the gentle

whistle of the breeze

as it reminds to listen,

 

to notice the tide

recede into the womb

of the ocean .

 

Slow down enough

to watch the moving

branches of a tree,

like batons conducting

the symphony of the birds,

 

to contemplate the changing

shadows of the light

imprinting filigree

on the ground,

 

enough to perceive the

different shades of green

that adorn the landscape.

 

Slow down enough

to discover ladybugs

winding playfully

down grass blades,

 

to observe the crow

bravely challenge the hawk

in an open meadow

high above the

reach of the trees,

 

to catch the bugambilia

flowers flutter like butterflies

when they are nudged

by the wind.

 

Slow down enough to track

the snail’s path

as it trails the

sun’s shadow,

 

to distinguish the endless

trills of the Mockingbird

and the warbling

chirp of the Finch.

 

Slow down enough

to feel alive!

 

Imperfect, but Alive

Birthdayweekend 9

Some days I feel so alive, as if I have glitter running through my veins.  Everything inside me feels electric!  Other days I wake up longing for something and I don’t know what. The longing feels so much bigger than me, so much stronger than me.  It’s a longing that makes me feel lonely and even a bit empty, like a weightless sensation in the pit of my stomach.  But I don’t run away from the longing; instead I try to learn from it and recognize what I need to pay attention to in my life.  Sometimes I feel like a fallen leaf just tumbling along on the street without a destination, and I remind myself to just enjoy the moment, though the sense of loneliness sometimes feels too heavy.

Today, I woke up with a feeling of hopefulness, like little butterflies fluttering in my stomach –  in that small place where sometimes emptiness overwhelms.  I woke up feeling empowered and in control. It’s odd to feel in control of a life that no one really has any control over.  I feel in control even though many of the issues that are part of my life aren’t resolved.  The only way they are resolved is that I have accepted them in my life, and I do what is in my power to deal with them, and the rest, I have to surrender and release.

This morning, I felt incredible joy paying attention to life: the trees waving at me as I drove along, the brush-stroked clouds in the sky, the arms of the sun reaching into my car, the birds like cursors shifting across the sky, and the wind like translucent silk gliding over my face and arms.

I felt this way and noticed these gifts of life even though the world around me seems to be falling apart.  It’s a wonderful reminder that even in the midst of violence, chaos, and uncertainty, we must allow for life to flow through us, unrestrictively; that our wonder and acceptance of the unfiltered energy of life does not have to be eclipsed by the madness of the world.

This is the condition of being that I continue to strive for.   My relationship with life is fulfilling because it is alive, not because it is perfect.

What am I worthy of?

images

As I welcomed the New Year and thought about all the resolutions that I had committed to in past years, one very important lesson dawned on me: I have learned that New Year resolutions are successful when we heal enough to believe we are worthy and deserving of those resolutions.

For the past couple of years, after leaving a 13 year career, I have been struggling with defining what I want to do next in my life.  For most of my adult life, I have always known what I would do next.  After I graduated from high school, I attended college, then I applied for a teaching job, which lead me to a Master’s program, and so on.  There was always something concrete that I could grasp for, A defined goal with very structured and delineated tasks. There were always two results: I either obtained what I was applying for, or I didn’t.   Now the hardest aspect about my journey is having to navigate through uncertainty; not knowing what the next step looks like, how it will unfold. Not even knowing what the end-result might be, yet trusting my heart to take that next step.

I am familiar with fear – the kind that I grew up with.  Fear of getting in trouble, fear of “bad” people, fear of getting hurt, fear of not having enough food, fear of not finding a place to live, fear of failure.  But the kind of fear I am experiencing now, I have never felt before.

I have a vision that has come to me in pieces through dreams, symbols, and feelings that arise from the deepest part of my essence.  As I’ve started to make sense of the pieces, my vision has become clearer, while the resistance of taking the first step toward fulfilling my vision has become stronger.  Understanding where this resistance is coming from has been the greatest struggle to accepting that I am worthy of my vision.

Your-vision-will-become-clear__quotes-by-Carl-Jung-63

We all have a purpose to serve and fulfill in our lives, and that purpose is revealed through our vision. It’s up to us, however, to pay attention to our hearts in order to discover our vision.  Toni Morrison, one of my favorite authors, wrote her first novel at age 39.  She spent a great part of her life searching for the types of stories she was yearning to read, and when she didn’t find them, she realized that it was up to her to write them.  Our vision begins to come to us when what we are yearning for, we cannot find in the world around us.  As my experience and passion for teaching, mentoring, and serving youth increased and I learned to listen to our youth, I began to discover that the systems through which I was serving them would never allow me to provide fully what they deserved. The gap between what I could provide them in the classroom and what they needed was ever-widening, creating a drift between my soul and the role I was fulfilling.  It was then that I began to envision.

I know what I am.  I know who I am. I know how I serve.

Fear of fulfilling my purpose, fear of success, fear of creating, and fear of not having what it takes keeps me from receiving the gifts that my soul is offering me.  My relationship with my soul is about co-creating my life so that I am living it to the fullest and aligning it with my purpose.  However, in order to do this I must get to a place where I truly believe that I am worthy of the gifts, the abundance, my soul has to offer me.  By abundance I am not referring to material wealth, but rather the possibilities and resources that are available to me as I take the first step to commit to doing something good for and with my life. As I become open to receiving, and trusting my soul, my vision will become clearer, unwavering, and most of all, more powerful than my own fear of fulfilling it.  So when I ask myself, “What am I worthy of?”  My response must honestly be, “I am worthy of any blessings or desires that are a manifestation of my inner life.  I must believe this without any shadow of doubt.  Believing is not just the ability to think something is possible; it is to recognize in my soul that it is inevitable.  

 

When I feel worthy and deserving, I know the following: (From Dr. Wayne W. Dyer)

My self-esteem comes from myself.  As the daughter of the universe who comes from the stars, my worthiness is given.

I accept myself without complaint and without conditions.

I take full responsibility for my life and what it is and is not.

I understand the importance of having harmony between my thoughts, my feelings, and my actions.  This harmony translates into peace and contentment.

There is nothing my highest self wants more than peace.  This is the peace that makes me feel worthy of all the richest blessings of the universe.

I am worthy of that which reflects how much I believe I’m worth.  And so each time I am called by my soul to be a greater manifestation of myself, to fulfill a greater purpose in my life, I am also called to the work of believing in my worth.

I remind myself of all that I have overcome and I celebrate my strengths, and make note of how they have contributed to me coming this far.  I often focus so much on my challenges and failures that I forget that those are the platforms from which I forge my strengths and successes.    This allows me to see that I already have everything I need to fulfill my purpose, I just have to remember and trust that I do.

Even when the vision seems so overwhelming, I remind myself of the next practical step.  The vision of a tree begins with the germination of a seed.  As small as that process may seem, it is significant to the fulfillment of the miraculous tree.  Each step is important to my trust in the process and myself.  As I move through each step, I learn what I need for the next. Plus, overcoming the fear of the next step is much more doable than overcoming the fear of my vision.

I pay attention to what I am learning and how I’m growing along the way.  I especially focus on the learning that guides me to be a more authentic version of myself. When learning becomes my accomplishment, then the things I fail at also become part of fulfilling my purpose.  This in turn allows me to release more layers of fear and discover more of who I am and what I have to offer – knowing that we all have a genius to offer the world.

Genius is more than an idea.  Genius is hard work; hundreds and hundreds of hours of hard work.  It’s taking risks, making mistakes, starting over, getting lost, discovering, surpassing expectations, finding miracles, and creating new. It’s tedious work and uneventful hours, lots of waiting and uncertainty.  But if it makes me come alive, it is the calling of my soul, and I am worthy of the work.

I sit in silence, attentive to my inner voice.  To the whisper that drowns the loud echoes in my mind that beat like a drum, “you are not good enough.”   I wait for that inner voice, invite it to my awareness because there is where I find God, where I find truth.  Each time, I learn again, I am spirit housed in a physical body, brought to life by the universe to fulfill a divine purpose, for every single being that exists, from the stars to a grain of sand, has a purpose.