Kathryn Hudson Today

To content | To menu | To search

Wednesday 4 April 2018

FOR YOU, MOM : a blog from March 13, 2018

Bonjour!

It has been a long while since I sat to write a blog... it has been a long while since I sat still long enough!

Since my return to Europe a month ago, I have been on the run: Paris, Bordeaux, then Switzerland for the last two weeks, almost every minute filled with work I love to do.

(I know how lucky that is: I was a banker for 22 years!)

I got back to wet-puppy Paris yesterday and dutifully did the laundry and the shopping, and began preparing for a big workshop I hold every year in the center pf Paris. Every year since my Mom passed...

The first time I ran the workshop, I was nervous as it was a sea-change for the former banker I was. So I chose Saint Patrick's weekend for those three days 2010 for good luck, proud Irish passport-holding girl that I am. What I didn't know when I booked the hall months in advance was that something else would happen in March of 2010 that would rock my world even more.

My Mom died.

She passed the night of March 8, just before midnight, and I was with her. We kids had been taking turns staying with her at night, and it was my turn. I had been talking and singing to her, and marveled that she "came to" a bit at two moments: to sing a little of "Itsy Bitsy Teeny Weeny Yellow Polka Dot Bikini" with me, and again, when I softly told her "I can walk you to the door Mom, but I can't go all the way with you - soon, though!": imagine my surprise when her eyes flew open just then and she confirmed, "Soon!"

Funny to the end, my Mom was. If you listened closely enough...

She loved to laugh, and we loved when she did. So much so, that i would make a point of calling her whenever I did anything really dumb: I loved making her laugh! Now, when I do something goofy, I wish I had her to call.

Her life was not an easy one, with all seven of us in tow, up and down the 96 steps to our apartment (6th floor, no elevator), any number of times a day, so far from the life of which she must have - like all of us? - dreamed as a young, beautiful girl. Sometimes you could feel her regret... but we always loved when she had a drink and cut loose, laughing the way I imagined she had when she was young.

I was home for an RnR visit (and for my niece/goddaughter's bachelorette party) before my first big workshop when she had a stroke and, after some days, slipped away.

I flew back to Paris after her funeral with my then-partner-in-crime who had flown over to be with me during that period (thank you, Jérôme - some kindnesses you never forget), with a big hole inside, but determined not to cancel what was - I knew, even then - the start of a new life for an old banker (I was all of 46 lol.)

I remember when I first told my Mom what I was getting up to, over here in France, after the Bank shifted strategies and I declined the positions offered me, stateside (I became a banker to get to Paris, no sense in going back then.)

When I told her I was working with Angels, she said, with a bit of frustration, "Not you, too!"

I pulled it out of her: apparently, my Grandma (her mother) used to do tea leaf readings for the people in her building growing up, and she had always been - and still was! - horrified by that. It was all of the immigrant mom doing weird things that made her not fit in, to be different, "weird".

And now, her banker-normal daughter was going to be "weird" too.

I will never forget that day, as I came out of the "spiritual closet" to my Mom: I was at once delighted that there was a history in my family (that I wasn't as weird as all that, at least not for us), and sad that my Mom was not as happy about my shift as I was. Oh well...

But, like everything, that changed too. After my Dad died, Mom and I spent a month at my place, Attitude Adjustment, in Emerald Isle, NC. During that time, I made her drinks and we howled at the full moon together, drawing closer.

We saw a movie in which Kevin Costner promised that in the event of his passing, he would always visit his newfound love, and the sign would be the wild horses on the outer banks. Walking back to the car after the movie, I asked my Mom if she wanted to do that, if we would also send a sign to the other - whoever left first. I was surprised when she agreed, and we opted for crows, sacred messengers between the worlds.

Well, that weekend after my Mom's funeral, I was nervous as all get-out before my first workshop. But there were crows: on the way to the Metro, from the Metro to the venue, on the way home, crossing the Mirabeau bridge. For thee days there were crows.

And this past weekend, teaching the same workshop (almost the same - it has evolved some!) in Lausanne, Switzerland on the occasion of the anniversary of my Mom's death... you guessed it - crows! Every morning as I walked to work, a boon for my day.

Yeah, I run all around the world these days, teaching and generally enJOYing, and delighted that the writing I always dreamed of doing is finally coming to pass. That professionally, things are movin' and shakin! (Gratitude!)

But sometimes (maybe like all of us?), I still get to feeling like the kid who wishes her Mom were around. Like right now...

... and as I write this from the Paris apartment, on the terrace just outside, yep. You guessed it again.

Sure, sure... I know what they say. That crows precede (and follow) rain. And it is meant to rain today.

But that logic stuff ain't fooling me, none... I know how thin that veil is.

Thanks, Mom, love you too!

Crow love from Paris...

Taking Back the Vehicle

Bonjour from gray and rainy (quelle surprise) Paris!

As elsewhere, the Spring has not yet sprung here in Paris, leaving lovers come to celebrate April in Paris, well, soggy.

But no matter! What happens OUTSIDE doesn't affect what happens INSIDE, right?

Right??

Okay maybe not so much. I remember in my twenties working in "The City" of London with the Bank one winter. Every day, rain and more rain. For weeks. Then, one blessed day... the SUN came out!!!

EVERYONE was smiling! In the street, in the office, EVERYONE was VERY apparently (positively) impacted by the sun coming out.... which led me to make a somewhat snide comment to my English colleagues that they were all behaving like a bunch of Americans! (They had before that made indictment of Americans as too happy, kind of like puppies. But the reality was simply, I pointed out, that they weren't getting enough Vitamin "D"elight, in the form of sunshine. I guess I showed them)

So, what?? So... we know the weather affects us. Of course it does. And not just the meterological kind. The weather around us, the ambiance, the attitudes and energy of the people with whom we are surrounded, "whether" they are positive or negative: all of it impacts us.

And it will continue to do so. Unless and until we take over the vehicle.

Huh?

Exactly! huh?

How often do we ask whence a funk that grabs us by the toe is actually coming? How often do we, with a simple "Huh? Where did THAT come from?", identify the variables (rain, sleet, hail, Kelly, Rob, Donald) that are raining on our parade - commandeering our vehicle?

Imagine that our body - composed of many levels (physical, mental, emotional, energetic) - is simply the VEHICLE that our soul chose to drive in this lifetime. It's our vehicle, and meant to last a lifetime. It was conceived of and created specifically to optimize the chances for our success: the realization of the purpose to which we were born, for which our soul decided (yes, decided!) to come alive, thanks to the Creator/Creation.

Bear with me, now...

Imagine further that we have a mission (each of us), but that no one ever told us that we have a mission. (I know that was true for me. maybe for you, too?) So how can we guide our vehicle to the destination when we don't know where that destination is?

Confounding this, we live in a world that commandeers our vehicle regularly: we can (maybe often) feel like we have no choice. GOTTA go to school, to work, to church, to war, to fulfill this or that social obligation... The dastardly "shoulds" and "gottas" that commandeer our vehicles from the beginning.

The commandeering of our vehicles begins at such an early age that sometimes we never even have the opportunity to take over the vehicle ourselves. To enjoy the riding of it!

From obligation to obligation and so unto death we go... with hopefully some splattering of fun in there, at least enough to be the sugar that makes the medicine go down!

But maybe - and I am thinking out loud for myself, mainly, here - if I can just sit comfortably in my vehicle, take back the ownership of it, maybe that balance could shift to a lifetime of joy speckled with obligation. And at that, obligations that don't seem like obligations anymore because Spirit has re-awakened in us and we are having FUN again!

How to take back the vehicle? here are some ideas I think I will try out, but basically it comes down to one truth.

I STEP INTO MY POWER/TAKE BACK MY VEHICLE BY ENSURING ITS WELL-BEING WITH ONLY HIGH-QUALITY FUEL:

1. Spend time with people who are uplifting (generally, positive people.) This means also avoiding the folks who will bring us down. It is easy to find nay-sayers: recognizing and valuing our cheerleaders is the key.

2. Invest in your vehicle. Imagine you had a Ferrari, would you leave it parked on Dykman street by the river? (Some of you know whereof I speak lol.) Would you let it go, never washing or waxing? Giving it cheap gas, or too little care? (And then, be surprised when it gets ill or stalls on you?)

Another example, if you are not a car person (I don't have one, personally), imagine that you are a violinist and you have a Stradivarius. A masterpiece which seems to have been created in the heavens! Just like your instrument! If you had such a violin, would you "let it go", letting anyone who asked use it?

No!

Similarly, sacred, our vehicles, our instruments are to be maintained with the utmost care and honor. (DO WE HONOR OUR BODIES?)

3. Let go of what is no longer good enough. Let go even of the phrase "good enough." "Good enough" is settling, and when we settle, everything is pulled down: we give away our instrument. Maybe to someone who doesn't even know how to play it.

4. Rest: Take time apart. Let your vehicle idle. Never good to run at top speed all the time.

5. Rest: Find beautiful places to simply be, sometimes. Harsh roads all the time does not make for long life. (RIP Dave.) <3

6. Rest: From the rules. Let your vehicle do simply what it goddam well wants to, sometimes lol.

7. Go into nature, exercise, breathe deeply, dance, play, sex, sing, laugh (big belly laughs!)... enJOY your vehicle to keep it running at a high level for a long time... eternally! <3


***********************************************************************************************************

Voilà! Some ideas for stepping back into our power, for taking back "the vehicle" we are graced with in this lifetime.

SURE, sure, I have heard the only "let go and let GOD" adage, and am in complete agreement with it. But not INSTEAD of stepping into our power, but along with it!

Before I can let GO, I have to be in possession of something to let GO of. I have to take back my vehicle from the world that commandeered it, and STEP INTO MY POWER, loving the vehicle I get to move through this world in, this go-round.

In this way, I assure the optimum performance (JOY!) of the instrument called "Kathryn" as I, curious and no longer burdened by the heaviness of the world and its obligations, can enter joyfully and consciously into Collaboration.

So today, before I start running again tomorrow, today I will be...

...TAKING CARE OF THE BODY from Paris...

Sunday 4 February 2018

Step On That Smurf!

Mornin', y'all!

It is Super Bowl Sunday here in the US and I am never here for it, so that is really kind of fun. Especially since my numbers are going to win lol. And GO EAGLES! ;-)

Before the game begins, I get to do some REIKI - with the ocean as a backdrop - for a good friend trying it for the first time... so that is great fun, too!

In between, after i finish this quick blog, I have only the Afterword or "Next Steps" chapter of my second book to finish, and it'll all get sent off to France for publishing this spring/summer... how great is that?

But I am MOST excited about a little something that happened in a yoga class yesterday.

Let me be clear: I prefer spin class. I do classes here in NC and also in Paris, have for three years now, and LOVE me some spin class! Mostly, I love getting GOing, as hard as I can, until I am red and sweating and winded... LOVE it! It is kind of how I have lived my life, and so it is familiar to me...

But yoga? That's a different story. Yoga requires patience and flexibility. UGH!

It's good to know yourself... and I can be inflexible. Physically, yes, definitely. But if I am honest, not only...

But these days I can see that inflexibility is not working for me: not the physical kind, nor any other kind. My body is aching for more fluidity and flexibility, and my heart and mind are, too. The ability to let things flow, to let go of what was, to allow the new to arrive, these are gifts I now pine for. So when the yoga instructor asked me if I were staying for the yoga class after spin last week, I said "why not?"

I started going to yoga.

I must say it is a bit disheartening as I am really very stiff lol. Women twenty years older than me showing me (way) how it's done encourage me greatly, but I can see I have a long road before me...

But that is Smurf talk!! Step on it!!

huh?

Let me correct the above phrase: I can already see progress and have hope... mostly because of Shiva and the Smurf.

Huh?

Juli, the (great) yoga teacher at Momentum in Morehead, was talking during the class about a deity called Shiva the destroyer... who destroys what needs to GO so new life can begin. Which already spoke to me, but as she spoke, it got even more interesting.

Shiva, she says, is most often pictured stepping on a Smurf!! (Ok, ok she said a blue dwarf, but I heard Smurf. Bear with me.)

Shiva is stepping on the Smurf which represents the "drama" in life... in so stepping, he has a higher perspective, and can see clearly real Life. With a capital "L".

When I see the drama in my life as simply a Smurf to deal with by stepping on it and looking above, that feels powerful. In addition, I simply cannot take a Smurf seriously, which puts everything into perspective and helps me not give power to the drama.

Ever hear the phrase, "Not my circus, not my monkeys!? It is a meme that seems to be everywhere, reminding us to not get dragged into other peoples' drama.

But stepping on the Smurf reminds me of something maybe even more important to me: not to let MY circus, or its monkeys, pull me down, either!

So now I begin my day with a yoga Sun Salutation, and step on that Smurf to rise above the madness...

One Step at a Time from Emerald Isle...

Sunday 28 January 2018

There's Nothing - and Everything - Out There

Mornin' y'all!

It is an ethereal morning here on the beach: beyond the dunes, there is... nothing!

Pure white, like the televisions screens of yore after midnight (if you know what i mean, you are old too. So glad to still be alive 'n' kickin!)

But seriously, there is nothing beyond the dunes... nothing visible to the eye, anyway.

With the fog that sits on the beach waiting to hear the sand cry "Uncle!", no life is discernible: land and sea both swallowed up in white: the kind that makes you squint to try to see, but nothing works. The horizon between land and sky, the whole of the earth beyond, melted away in some giant magic trick.

WHOA!

It IS beautiful, but also disconcerting, as we humans (okay, I can only speak for myself), rather, I like to feel like I am in control. But when the world disappears, I am not in control, and so the eerie beauty holds a tinge of discomfort.

I should be used to it!

It's long since I ceded control (which is an illusion anyway), to allow for the magic of grace to guide my comings and goings. But the sight of the world gone not mad, but just GONE this morning reminds me that no matter how long it has been, part of me would still like to crawl, not often but sometimes, under a rock. Even a heavy one. Just to gain some semblance of stability, of something solid.

I have visibility for oh, about the next three months of my existence: where I will be, what work I will be doing, and then nothing. Oh, maybe some silhouettes in the distance, lovely ones of Martinique, Guadeloupe, Tahiti, New Caledonia... but these are forms not yet solidified, work not yet confirmed, still in the planning stages.

And though my situation is admittedly a bit extreme, isn;t that the way for all of us, to a degree?

We think we know what will happen this year - hell, this DAY! - but then something surprising occurs. Life throws us a curve ball. One that we so often judge as being "good" or "bad." A variation from our "plan"... just about every day.

How we behave when those curve balls come is a measure of how comfortable we are in our skin, in our life. How confirdent we are that - even when we can't see the beach or the future - we know it is there. Everything is out there.

And it's gonna be good... because things generally turn out BETTER when I don;t try to control them... not worse. And the dimension to my life - to Life as a whole - which is invisible is far greater than we were ever taught... a Source of great comfort once we learn to relax and breathe in that Presence.

That Presence that has everything under control. As long as we can relax and go with that flow.

Whooosh! from Emerald Isle...

Tuesday 23 January 2018

No Pillar of Salt

Mornin' y'all!

The weather here this morning makes waiting on the sun a fruitless exercise so instead I write a little, keen to write something that isn't my second book (THE ANGELS MADE ME DO IT), which is well on the way to finished, but all-absorbing. Or almost.

Just for a quick moment, I seek a little quiet time (which is what writing like this is, for me) to look forward: to the day, to the week, to the year. But mostly to the day.

And definitely NOT to look backward!

A story has been running through my mind, a story from the Old testament, the story of Lot fleeing Sodom and Gomorrah with his family. It has been running through my mind of late and this morning, it is insistent.

Actually, not the whole story: I just read Genesis 19 to recall the whole story. The only part of the story that has been running through my mind these last days is this part :

But Lot’s wife, behind him, looked back, and she became ja pillar of salt. >

Lot was graced with an Angelic visit... not one but TWO Angels came to see him and tell him to leave the city, which was to be destroyed, and Lot (no fool!) took their advice to heart, gathered his loved ones as he could, and left.

Lot and his daughters, and his wife left in a hurry, heading to their salvation, where they would be safe. Where they would be alive. They were running toward their future, focused on safety and life, a gift of grace.

That is, except his wife. She made the fatal error of looking back. And was turned to salt for her trouble.

A couple of things pop out: how I am glad God doesn't decimate cities for being dens of iniquity anymore (I guess we have taken on that role.)

But the most salient part of the story for me is what happened to Lot's wife: a freakin' pillar of salt? Really? Just for looking back??

Though I guess with fire and brimstone at my heels, I might not take a moment to look back, I can certainly understand her desire to do so: her whole life was back there. And even if it wasn't the greatest place to live (it being Sodom and Gomorrah and all), it had been her home. So she looked back...

WOW. My gut screams, "That's not fair! It is a natural human instinct to look back!"

And maybe it is. But apparently, it can also kill, that looking back...

Now the idea is that Lot's wife (who apparently shall remain nameless) did not just sneak a peek, but she stopped. She stopped following the guidance of the Angels to safety and the promise of new life. And with regret, she looked back...

... and it killed her.

Thankfully, that is not what happens when we look back, at least it hasn't happened to me: no pillar of salt here! We are not punished when we rue the past, eschewing the future.

Or are we?

Wow... we are!

Any time I accord to the past, I steal away my life, from this day, this week, this year. Laden with the burden of the past, I have no freedom to enjoy the present: my hands and my heart are full. There is no room for the magic of divine intervention, of the fullness of magical LIFE... which can only happen if I keep on moving forward to it, staying fully present.

JUICY LIFE CANNOT HAPPEN TO A PILLAR OF SALT!

I can rue or regret... or I can live!

Ruing or regretting - the fateful "woulda coulda shouldas" - takes me right OUT of the life that is mine to live today. And if I am not present to it, my life indeed will become dry and lifeless, like a pillar of salt.

Can we compare the pillar of salt to depression, perhaps? Motionless, dry, lifeless, still? Stuck in one place and seemingly alone? Maybe...

All I know is that as this year begins (and HOW is it already January 23, I ask you?), I am decided to look ahead with curiosity and fresh eyes - no salt! - focused on what surprises lie ahead.

With Lot and the rest of his family, I run forward allowing the past to stay in the past, knowing that the only LIFE that is possible is what is on the path ahead... and that the Angels will prepare the road (not taken) as we go along.

How do I dare say that? how do I know?

Well, when we invite angelic assistance into every day, magic happens! Experience has taight me that (I was a stubborn learner, at first.) But when I pass the burden of how things get done over to them, magic happens! Like a (French) publisher finding me even before I finished my first book. Not small miracles - BIG ones!!

Angels travel the road not taken. And we can go along if we don't look back:

"And knowing how way leads onto way, I doubted that I should ever come back... Two roads diverged in a yellow wood, and I I took the one less travelled-by and that has made all the difference."

(Frost, "The Road Not Taken")

No Salt!

Love from Emerald Isle...

Wednesday 20 December 2017

I Wish You ... Dolphins and Pelicans!

Mornin' y'all!

I ran out this morning to walk the beach before the rain arrives, before the writing begins in earnest, before the things that need to get done, well, get done.

I walked enjoying a silver sun adding a cool sheen to the surface of the water.

As I walked I realized again how very fortunate I am that I took the chance to change my way of life, how lucky I am to work at something that allows me such "down" time... yet even as I walked, I noticed my thoughts slipping to planning, both what will happen today and what will happen in the future (events in new York, here in NC, France, Tahiiti...)

Pleasant thoughts, assuredly!

But thoughts that had lured me away from my beach this morning, my secret hideout, my quiet place.

I gazed out on the water, anticipating (as is my wont) a message of some kind, and noticed the pelicans there.

Now, I watch pelicans very intently - have for years! - as they seem somehow to speak to my soul, reminding me at times of the importance of keeping my focus, or flying low, or flying in concert with others, or...

SITTING?

The pelicans - hundreds of 'em! - WERE JUST SITTING THERE.

Wha-a-a-a...?

Yep. Just sitting there.

Not feeding (I checked), not flying, not dancing, not worrying, not angry, not anything... just sitting there, floating on the water: up and down. Sitting. How very Buddhist of them!

Well, you don't have to hit me on the head to get a point across, and right next to where I was walking the sand had been built up forming a perfect ledge, oh, about the height of my... yep, you got it! I sat down.

It felt GOOD just to sit there for a bit. The long list of things to do dissolved. I made like a pelican and sat.

Sitting, I saw the sunlight skip across the waves before disappearing in foam. I felt the coldness of the water as an odd wave made it all the way to my feet (i took off my shoes to sit) before hurrying back to the sea.

I sat.

When in the hurry of the season and the writing and the new agent (yay, Linda!) and the contracts and the arrrrrrrgh do i just sit? And yet I knew as I sat there that THIS, and not anything else on my list or in my day, was what was important. THIS feeds the soul...and Life. THIS was the shepherds just gazing at a baby. This was a star shining over a stable. This was the eight candles, or the long pilgrimage to mecca: pelicans sitting.

So we sat there, the pelicans and I: they, on the waves beyond the breakers, and I, where the land had broken a ledge. Sat there together and separate. Just sat.

And as I sat, I noticed something else, very subtle: dolphins!

They were swimming slowly among and around the waves, between me and the pelicans, almost imperceptibly breaching the ocean surface.

Dolphins and pelicans!

To share a (not so big) secret, I love dolphins so much I have one tattooed right where the ledge of sand was holding me. And they have been so present every day of my visit so far, it has been a real blessing. But this felt somehow different.

I WOULDN'T HAVE SEEN THEM IF I HADN'T SLOWED DOWN.

As I said, you don't have to hit me over the head to get a point across. But the dolphins and pelicans double-teamed me this morning, just in case I missed the point. Rushing, and trying to control the future by planning it leaves NO ROOM for the grace of the here-and-now. The dolphins and pelicans. The gifts that we are given from a Loving hand ... if only we notice them.

So for this day, and for this holiday season, I wish for you spaciousness and surprises, wilderness and wonder. And the grace of knowing that the Universe is trying to tell you something too. Mostly that you are loved. Very much.

Yep. For today and for this holiday season, I wish for you, too,...

Pelicans and dolphins from Emerald Isle...

Friday 15 December 2017

Old Habits Die Easy: FEED THE FABULOUS

Mornin' y'all!

Here on Emerald Isle, a morning walk along the water took my feet where I have walked hundreds of times, maybe more.

The stilllness of the December morning was punctuated only by waves rolling and crashing, and the occasional hammer tending to houses standing empty in the island winter.

The silence, complemented by the crisp air and the sun gleaming through a field of clouds gave the morning a bell-like clarity and a silvery hue. I was walking through a silver-bells dream...

In the two hours I walked, I met only one person, walking the opposite way. But even if human presence is scant off-season, natural activity is not!

Pelicans, long, long lines of them: thirty-four in one line, or eleven (with bursts of four or five in between), all elegantly tracing the curve of the waves with the tips of their long wings, pointing like a conductor as they moved from wave to wave, then abandoning each as it curled to crash and moving to the next.

The horizon blurs in the distance with fog, "la brume" as they say in French, reminding ,me that even if I cannot see what is just beyond the horizon, it's really okay. (Maybe even all the better!)

I walked, noticing the shore birds, willets and sandpipers, who in high season scurry away at human footsteps now grown stalwart or cocky (they outnumber me on the beach!) continuing their morning meal without so much as a glance in my direction hurrying after each wave, harvesting the fresh feast each wave brings in.

From time to time, I stopped to see the sun traveling behind the screen of clouds. Each time (magic!) the sun's light pointed like a finger across the water from the sun right to where my feet had stopped to admire. The light reached out, touching and connecting me to that source of light and warmth and life, as if acknowledging my presence. (Yes I know it was a game of perspective, but still...)

In the stillness the world becomes magical again.

As long as I stay there.

I laughed out loud (yes, right there on the beach walking all alone lol) at how sometimes difficult it can be to stay in the moment, how insistent that old habit/trap of falling into thoughts of the past (some lovely, others less) or the future (some lovely plans, some useless fretting.) Even as I laughed, it dawned on me that it was perhaps somehow designed to lure me away from this magical moment. Or this one. Or this!

As I walked, I kept leaving the beauty of the still beach - my happy place! - and for what?

Sometimes thinking back on this past year, with my first book coming out and new journeys and encounters in places with faraway names like Bora Bore and Tahiti, wonder-full experiences... but also some decidedly less fun experiences: learning experiences reminding me to always listen to my intuition (the worst "I told you so" is the one we say to ourselves). In short, I found myself looking backward to a year that had many ups and downs.

When I wasn't paying attention, thoughts slipped, too, to the future - which from where I am sitting is about as blurry as the horizon! - thoughts of wonders that will come (finishing my second book which is meant to come out in French sometime in May... my first book hopefully coming out in English in 2018... new voyages to work in martinique and Guadeloupe, canada... divination thoughts trying to suss out the "wheres" and the "whens" and the "with-whoms" in advance. These thoughts crop up naturally, like a clam revealed by a receding wave; and so I (a willet) insistently, repeatedly plucked them out and set myself back to the task at hand: simply walking on the beach, being nourished there.

Again and again I turned my attention back to the gift of HERE, the gift of NOW... the gift of LIFE!

Positive or negative, that backward thinking about the past or forward thinking about the future lured me away from the gift of my walking in the Here-and-now. So each time I caught myself, I simply laughed and called my thoughts back, ambling, amused, watching my sanderling thoughts scurry in and out of the waterline of the present.

Each time I recalled my thoughts with the same gentle reminder: BE HERE NOW.

Noticing when I slip into not-here mode is interesting.

It happens when things get too hard and I allow distractions to "take me away from it all." It happens when things get hard in a way I DON'T like (suffering through a conversation or a conference that doesn't interest me) as well that things that are hard that I DO like (like walking a beach in the early morning hours.

Huh? How is that hard?

When we are in silence and facing the ineffable beauty of Nature, it calls to OUR ineffable beauty, tha part of us that is shining, the part of us that is FABULOUS. (and yes, that goes for you guys too - all of us!

Since most of us learned that we possess any fabulous ineffable beauty, instead of walking in it always (consciously), we sometimes dodge it (unconsciously) by dodging the moment that presents it, the moment that reminds us of it.

And so a walk on a beautiful beach finds us thinking about the things that we left behind, worries fears, [past and present, anything to avoid the call of the Fabulous.

We know that silence is not the natural state of affairs for our society, and this fits in with the unconscious hiding: the world has given us noise to hide in.

So how is beach walking hard? Well, it's not, if we are unaware that we leave the beach in our thoughts as our body walks along...

But the moment that we become aware of it, and begin to try to "stay put", it can seem like a hard task to BE HERE NOW. Personally I have been going at this for many years, and so I laugh whenever I notice that that old habit is still hanging around.

It can seem so much easier to slip backwards and allow the cares and worries of this world to steal away the richness of this moment... of this life. Or to hide in noise and distractions (tv, internet, telephone) from the moments that call us to our fabulous Selves.

In general, when we begin anything new (like staying in the present moment, maybe), it can be uncomfortable. I remember when I moved from NYC to Philly, it felt like my skin was crawling, so powerful the desire was to go back to NY, and my old familiar life, even though I knew it was not good for me.

That skin-crawling thing, or any discomfort with the new that can be mental emotional or physical, shows just how addictive our habits can be, as our old habits call us backward to what we knew before, somewhere we felt in control. In this way, the past calls to us like a comfortable old friends; we can miss them terribly when we venture out into new terrain, even lovely new terrain like the present moment, the beach at dawn, or facing a future unknowable (and thus uncontrollable.

The problem with turning backward to try to regain what seems from the new vantage point comfortable, is that what WAS no longer exists. It is a NEW situation now, as we are constantly growing, and so a new equilibrium must be found which will ALSO force us to grow. Life just keeps giving us chances to grow into our fabulousness. :-)

I think that is why they say "OLD HABITS DIE HARD", but I don't think that is necessarily true; we can release old habits when we see them for what they are, and we consciously decide to let them go.... only if we really want to move on.

Then, we can make the moving on easier by recognizing that the only constant in this life IS change, and that growth and the fullness of life lies before us, not behind us. The idea is to peacefully let GO of old habits, habits which keep us locked into the past and locked out of the magic: our Fabulousness!

We let go of the OLD: habits of the past which don't serve us any longer by not feeding them: not giving them our energy, time and attention. We can make this easier on ourselves by at the same time feeding the NEW: cultivating activities that DO serve us: ones that FEED THE FABULOUS in us, renew us and fill us with light and ease and joy and the confidence for the future that is the hallmark of every part of Nature. But us. (!)

Today, inspired by a magical morning, I consciously choose the magic. I feed the fabulous: I walk and sing and write and will visit friends all before settling down to finish paperwork this afternoon (exactly the OPPOSITE of my habit of tackling the distasteful first.)

I feed the fabulous in me so I can FEEL the fabulous in me. And fabulous celebrates life. No playing small for the fabulous.

When we FEED THE FABULOUS, we FEEL FABULOUS! And ready for anything!

We- all - each and every one! - are fabulous. sons and daughters of Creation; it can be no other way. But our experience is not always fabulous: how can that be? The difference is simple: which side do we feed?

Do we feed the worry and fear or anger around the past or the future? Or do we feed the fabulous present moment, noticing the world around us as if in interaction with us, a conscious embracing of the magic of our fabulous life?

The choice is ours.

I know what I choose... how 'bout you?

Feeding the Fabulous from Emerald isle...

- page 2 of 137 -