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Archive for the ‘Healing’ Category

Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

As we move closer to the end of the year, I’ve been thinking a lot about letting go, emptying out, and making space for new stuff to grow.

Phrase Number 1

Last night, one of my besties sent me an email. She had pulled a card for me and wanted to send me the reading. The card itself centered around the idea of leadership, and the write-up contained one particular phrase the got my back up – “Don’t play small.” I’ve heard that phrase so many times, and it’s even been directed at me, but, really, what the hell does it even mean?

I know how it often gets interpreted. It is often used to tell people that they aren’t doing enough, they aren’t reaching enough people, they aren’t using their gifts enough, etc. The core of it is often “not enough”.

But what about this: What if we are exactly enough in this moment? What if we are the exact size we need to be? What if we are reaching the perfect number of people or expressing our gifts perfectly?

What would happen to ourselves and our lives if we could simply accept where we are in our current evolution? Do we berate seeds for being too small? We know the acorn holds all of the potential for the massive oak tree. We know that if we force things to sprout too quickly without providing for all of the necessities in the environment, that the seedling will be spindly and weak and is not likely to survive, never mind thrive. What if we are the seed simply waiting for the right combination of things to occur before we begin to transform and change shape? Can we not be okay with that? Because it’s not really in our control anyway, right? Because it’s not we who cause the seed to sprout. So maybe that applies to us as well. Maybe we can leave it to the larger forces that be and simply enjoy and appreciate who we are and what we have now?

Phrase Number 2

Which leads me to the next phrase that irks me – “They’re so broken.” I actually have to work hard to calm myself when I hear this phrase because it gets me so worked up. “They’re so broken” is usually used to describe someone who is having an extremely difficult time. I get it. But “broken”? Really? That word is so final, so fatalistic, so end-of-the-road. To my ears it sounds like, “They’ll never get out from under it. tsk tsk” But is it true?

What if the human spirit and the human capacity to heal is so much more powerful than we can imagine? What if it’s one of the most powerful forces in the Universe? Try that one on for size. What if the only time we can’t get out from under it is when we exhale for the last time?

Have faith in people. No matter how battered and bruised they may seem, so long as they’re breathing, there is possibility for change. Some people just take longer than others and may need extra support. I want to say, “Dear God, please stop looking at people as permanent victims. Stop taking the possibility for change away from people. If we take away hope, what is left?”

The Ritual

If I could, I would ban these 2 phrases from ever being used again. I know that I can’t control what others do, but I can keep a lookout for these phrases as they creep up to my lips, because they do. One thing I might do to reinforce ending the use of phrases I find debilitating or hurtful is write them down on paper and ritualistically burn them. Just burn them to cinders and watch them transform into something else altogether.

Words to ashes = space for something new

This is an easy and simple ritual to do for anything we humbly wish to transform and/or release – mindsets, relationship patterns, obstructive emotions, memories, habits, use of language, etc.

How About You?

If you could release anything right now, what would it be? Can you write it down and then burn it, setting it and yourself free? Are you willing to try?

Here’s to healthy clearing and lots of empty space for the new stuff to grow.

Lots of love and best wishes for you and your loved ones in the new year and always.

Tabitha

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Photo by Shane on Unsplash

And I said to my body, softly, “I want to be your friend.” It took a long breath. And replied, “I have been waiting my whole life for this.”

NAYYIRAH WAHEED

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Fave Picture of Mum and I – Christmas 2020

Never in my wildest dreams, as I sat down to bang out a speech for my mother’s funeral, did I ever imagine the reception it would get. To this day, just over 2 months later, I still have people quoting it to me!

There are so many reasons why I haven’t been on here in a long while, offering things from my own heart, beyond the quotes of other people. My mother’s sudden death, however, is certainly one reason. Losing her has taken up so much space, equal to the enormous amount of space she occupied in my life and my heart, that I haven’t an ounce of creative energy left. But I have this, this speech, that I would like to offer as a tribute to my mother. And if it inspires you in some way, all the better.

(Note: I took the liberty of editing Mum’s imagined conversation with God so that it is now accurate. One simply does not drop an F-bomb in the middle of a funeral. 😉 )

So much love,

Tabitha


What am I supposed to say to tie together a broad 75 year life?  I think this is the point where I come up with something profound, or offer a cute anecdote to lift spirits, but I’ve got nothing.  You have the amazing stories right now, and profound can be left to the philosophers.  What I have, and what I think you may also have, is a broken heart.  So let’s work with that.

There are 3 questions that have come up consistently as the story of my mother’s passing has been told:

1) Was she sick?

2) Did she suffer?

3) What happened?

My mother always relied on me to face and speak to the uncomfortable things, so I will do that now.

No, she wasn’t sick.  Not in the way you’d think.  Not in a doubled-over, barely moving kind of way.  My Mum had a broken heart, the child of a long line of people whose hearts were broken.  My mother lived with angina for 30 years without incident.  It was quite remarkable.  But lately she had been struggling with dizzy spells.  Having also lived with vertigo from time to time, she thought nothing of it, until the night she almost blacked out.  That night scared her enough to take her to the doctor who directed her to the hospital, which led to an admission, a battery of tests, the placement of 2 stents, 1 cardiac arrest, a quick resuscitation, recovery and back home.  All within a week.  I told my mother, who loved musicals, that I appreciated her skill at skipping off-Broadway and instead going full Broadway with her performance.

I was hoping that all of this would inspire my mother to bust out and do the things she had been putting off for too long.  So, to answer question number 2 – Did she suffer?  Not physically.  But living in a Covid world started to take my mother down.  She lost her volunteer positions.  She lost her sense of purpose.  She lost her connections.  And she lost her ability to talk to God.  She had too much time on her hands, too much time in her head, and fear started to creep in.  She started to fear everything – wind, poverty, declining health, inevitable death.  All very reasonable fears but they prevented her from living, from truly connecting to the pulse of life.  So in a deep, spiritual way, my mother suffered dearly.

Question number 3 – What happened?  This part I will keep short.  My mother died in her sleep.  Peacefully.  When I found her, she looked more peaceful than I had ever seen.  Finally, she had done something easily.  Finally, she surrendered.  She just let go.  No struggle.  No argument.  She just went to sleep and let go. 

That’s a remarkable thing.  Many of you will know that my mother didn’t always take the easy road.  She waited a lot for “perfect”.  She waited for the perfect time.  The Wednesday before she passed she said to me, “I look forward to walking the pier again.”  She loved the pier in Port Credit.  She’d go and look out over the lake, stopping to admire any and every baby within eyesight.  But….BUT….the weather had to be just so – not too hot, not too cold, not too windy, no bugs, not too many people.  The Tuesday before she passed, chatting with her friend before Yoga class about books, she mentioned how much she was looking forward to reading the newest book by one of her favourite mystery authors.  THIS book right here.  She held on to this book for months.  MONTHS.  Why?  Because….it had to be read on the back deck, in the summer, at about 6:30 in the morning, with a cup of tea ONLY if there were no children around, no leaf blowers going, no lawnmowers, no construction.  The spine on this book has never been cracked.  She never read the book.  And don’t even get me started on the trip to Newfoundland, a dream trip of hers that never happened because “perfect” never happened either.

I think if my mother returned to us today she would say this:  DO THE THING!  Eat the cake.  Read the book.  Ride the motorcycle.  Take the trip.  Call the friend.  Reflect on the past but don’t get stuck there.  Just….do the thing!

I imagine my mother now, free of her bodily confines, sitting, legs crossed, in God’s office.  Mum is smartly dressed with perfectly coiffed hair, as always.  Make-up just so.  She is looking at God with those piercing eyes and she says, “I have some questions for you.”  And as God starts to speak, she says, “Just a minute.  Just a minute.  I need to take notes.  Now where the FUCK did I put my glasses?!!”  Because only my mother could boss God around.

There’s a big hole now, a hole that was uniquely Christine’s, one that will never be filled again.  But maybe, just maybe, if we listen closely enough, we’ll be able to hear her incredible, infectious laugh, carried to us on the wind.  Or maybe a Baltimore Oriole, her most beloved bird, can remind us of her love of vibrant colours.  And if we’re really lucky, out of the corners of our eyes, maybe we’ll catch a glimpse of her spontaneously dancing anywhere, anytime.

Ja kocham cie, Mamus.  I love you.  As do so many others.  And you will be missed so much.

But it’s your turn now.  Be free.  Fly!

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