Category Archives: Spiritual Growth

Take this cup…

Have you ever wished you could blossom into your beautiful life without first being planted into the cold, dark ground?

Have you ever wished you could blossom into your beautiful life without having to break through the shell that surrounds your heart?

Have you ever wished you could blossom into your beautiful life without having to feel the pain of the push up through the heavy soil?  Without suffering?  Without ever being so fully human?

 Then, accompanied by the disciples,
Jesus left the upstairs room and went as usual to the Mount of Olives.
There he told them,
“Pray that you will not give in to temptation.”

 He walked away, about a stone’s throw, and knelt down and prayed,
“Father, if you are willing,
please take this cup of suffering away from me.
Yet I want your will to be done, not mine.”

Then an angel from heaven appeared and strengthened him. 
He prayed more fervently, and he was in such agony of spirit 
that his sweat fell to the ground like great drops of blood.

Luke 22:39-44

Growing Your Beautiful Life

Hello Friends! I know I’ve been absent for so long. I am making an effort to return here regularly. I’ve mentioned before that I’ve stayed away from here because I realized that “Mother of Addict” had become too much of my identity.

Now I’m back because I know that “Mother of Addict” is not my identity. It describes one of the many roles I play in life – but it does not define me. I realize that while I don’t have control over many things in my life (or, even more so, in my children’s lives), I can have control over my own perspective about who I am.

One new identity I’ve added recently is Certified Christian Life Coach. Part of the reason I haven’t been here is that I’ve been building a new blog. I hope you’ll visit me there. My coaching blog (and my coaching business) is called Growing Your Beautiful Life. And we’ve just begun a journal project there. It runs for 10 weeks – and just started yesterday. So if any of you are interested in using my journaling prompts to explore who you are and where you’re going in this new year, please feel free to check out the blog and the project and jump in. You can formally register here (for a more personalized approach), or you can just use the journal prompts I’m posting each day. There’s no charge to register – it’s my gift to you!

In the meantime, I’m still OneMomTalking and continuing the journey. Know that I pray for you all (collectively and often individually), and send love across the cyber-miles.

Like Wind Through My Window

Image“The Power of Now” (Tolle) has spurred me to begin regular meditation sessions here at
home. He says to get quiet and feel the inside of your body. That intrigued me and I tried it and I find that it works to quiet my mind. I cannot sustain inner dialogue or ponder mistakes from the past or  create “what-if” scenarios if I am breathing in and breathing out and focusing on what’s inside my skin. May sound strange, but it works.

Today I stayed home from work because if illness. My chest is scratchy and my sinuses hurt and my whole body feels exhausted. Tomorrow I’m supposed to drive from South Carolina to Florida to see my dad for Christmas. So this morning I was grumpy and concerned that my illness might prevent this trip.  And so, in response to both the illness and the grumpies, I decided to turn off the tv, close the laptop, and meditate. Here’s what happened:

Round One: I sat cross-legged on my bed, breathing in and out, reciting a bit of a prayer/mantra, and getting quiet. I became aware of the stuffiness of the air in my house. I haven’t had windows open in weeks and I was filled with a desire for a fresh, clean breeze. I opened my eyes and got off the bed and opened the bedroom window, plus a couple of others around the house.

Round Two:  I resumed my position, this time facing the open window. I resumed my breathing and began to focus on the sound of the wind through the trees. I am one with the wind. The wind and the trees and I have the same creator. Slow breath in through the nose. Slow breath out through the mouth. Hear the leaves brush against each other and the passing cars… CRASH!! 

Apparently the window wasn’t inserted properly into its frame. The wind blew the window in (the bottom section – the glass and it’s surrounding frame). The wind blew the window in, it fell onto the nightstand, knocking down the lamp. The lamp fell down and off the table onto the floor, hitting the nearby ironing board as it fell, knocking the iron onto the floor as well.

So much for my quiet time. But It did make me aware of the need to fix the window.

As I put everything back where it belonged, believe it or not I became aware of how the wind through the window was a metaphor for life. Yes it was. Sometimes everything just gets knocked over. Sometimes something that we think will be peaceful creates a ruckus. So we pick up the pieces, look for life lessons to learn, and move on.

I am now reading Marianne Williamson’s new book “The Law of Divine Compensation.” She says that the Universe corrects us when we get off course. Sometimes, I think, it does that by knocking a few things over and showing us a new plan. (Fix the window, put the ironing board away…).

God is like wind through my window. Refreshing and beautiful, with an occasional surprise. May the peace that passes our understanding sustain you in your travels. God bless.

Peace and Now

You are nowYou’ve heard of “peace and quiet.”  I suggest we change the phrase to “peace and now.”  Now is quiet – maybe not outside of us, but internally…spiritually.  At the core of who we truly are, now is silent and cannot be altered.

Sounds too easy?  It is and it’s not.  I’m reading Eckhart Tolle’s “The Power of Now,” and I’m in a  section toward the back of the book titled, “Give Up the Relationship with Yourself.”  What? Isn’t our recovery about RECOVERING our own relationship with ourselves. It’s the same thing. Just roll with it for a minute and I’ll do my best to explain.

It’s this idea: “If you develop a sense of identity based on your [victimhood, loss, recovering-parenthood, etc.] you have escaped one trap only to fall into another.”  (That’s a direct quote from the book except for the parens).  This is because any identity other than your pure essence (some might say “God”) is frought with some earthly or ego-centered frailty at one point or another.

Here’s the peace in NOW:  Right now I am this breathing body filled with the spirit of life.  If, tomorrow, I experience a trauma and my mind/body experiences intense pain of some sort or another, at any given moment I am still this breathing body filled with the spirit of life.  What I’m trying to get to is this question (which we’ve discussed before in a different context): How do you identify yourself?  I’m thinking that the answer to this question begins any person’s true recovery.

I’m really just thinking through this “out loud” here on this screen.  But I’m experiencing access to an always-accessible quiet of “Peace and Now” lately. And this time it’s not just because my boys are in full recovery – because one of them had a relapse recently.  He had a relapse and I started to re-identify with my “parent-of-addict-filled-with-fear-and-worry” self again. But I was reading this book, and I find I’m changing a bit in my ability to … as A Course in Miracles says … “See things differently.”

Please know I’m not lecturing or making light of where you are, what you’ve been through, or what you’re feeling.  I’m just sharing an idea that might help others as it’s helping me today. Right now. God bless you.

Wherever You Go…

My daughter is still struggling with our move.  When we lived in Colorado, she had reasons why she wanted to leave that place and those circumstance.  Now that we are in South Carolina, she has reasons why she believes Colorado was better, or why South Carolina is not the best place, or whatever.  You get the idea.

I figure it’s time for her to learn something we all learn at some point or another: “Wherever you go, there you are.”  Perhaps addicts learn this more clearly than the rest of us.  Whether in our homes, motel rooms, or on the streets, they still are who they are.  And sometimes the only way for them to learn that is for us to take that hard stand and draw those firm boundaries. 

One blog friend has had to do this recently.  It’s painful to read the stories from those who are just getting to that point with their addicts.  I’m grateful to be past that right now; and yet clearly aware that I might end up there again someday.  Relapse is the unforgiven friend you hope never shows up on caller i.d.

One of my favorite poets, Pablo Neruda, says it this way: “Someday, somewhere – anywhere, unfailingly, you’ll find yourself, and that, and only that, can be the happiest or bitterest hour of your life.”   Dr. Wayne Dyer reminds us: “Heaven on Earth is a choice you must make, not a place we must find.”

It’s all about the journey.  Wherever you go, there you are.  My daughter will learn in her own time; as we all do.  So be the blessing you want to see in the world.  I love you all – God bless!

Rebirth

 This is a photo I took here in South Carolina.  My new home.  It is a symbol, though, of all rebirth for me and my family.  Especially for Dan.

The bigget news:  Dan gave his life to Christ after being ministered to in jail by a visiting Bible Study leader.  Now, he is out on probation living with his dad.  He’s been clean (except for one slip) since May.  But clean now for 28 days outside of jail, by his own choice and because – he will tell you – of the power of God that lives in him.  He reads the bible daily, goes to church, meets weekly with the pastor, and has met a group of students from a local college who meet for study and fellowship together.  PRAISE GOD!! 

I am not allowed to talk to Dan on the phone, or to visit him in person.  The restraining order set in place back in May is still in effect.  The judge won’t lift it until I am able to go to Colorado and meet with her in court.  I don’t know when that will happen.  But I am sure it will happen exactly when it’s supposed to.  In the meantime, Dan and I write letters to each other.  It’s a wonderful, underused way of communication.  He can tell me about his life, uninterrupted, and I can do the same.  We are getting to know each other in a way we might not have otherwise. 

He says, “Mom, I am growing up now.  And you have your own journey.  Do what you need to do.  I love you!”  What more could a mother ask for?

Grace

I really have so much to update and will not do that at this time.  It’s 6AM and I need to shower and go to work. 

I will tell you that I have been feeling guilty lately because I’m moving forward with my life and spend less and less time in “mother of addict” mode.  Does this mean I’m denying reality?  Don’t know.  Dan’s been in jail for months now.  I saw him Friday and he looks good.  I cried when I saw him.  He cried too…well, almost.  I saw tears in his eyes. 

Anyway, I had been feeling guilty about not visiting him enough, about actually going forward with the move (five weeks), about not trying to help him define his next step, etc.  And then in church yesterday, we saw this U2 video.  It settled my heart a bit.  Perhaps it will serve you as well.  God Bless!