Continue On One’s Path, Move Forward, Journey

In the Native American Yuman language, Mii Amo means:

To continue on one’s path, moving forward, or journey.

During a recent trip to celebrate our health, a girlfriend and I visited the Mii Amo Spa, located in Sedona, Arizona.  What an ideal location to Celebrate-Self!

As we were getting settled into our room, we noticed scrolls on our beds.

Their contents set the tone for the quiet introspection that would follow:

Everything is as it should be and I recognize the perfection in my life daily.

Today, I will do my best and trust that is enough.

I am responsible for my attitude and I look for the good in everything.

I create my own reality, and I focus on what is good and right in my life and the world around me.

My positive attitude reflects in the people I come in contact with today.

I release my need to be a victim, realizing I always have a choice.

Opportunities abound for me always.

I release the need to please all of the people all of the time, and recognize it is enough to please myself.

(These intentions are to help guide your discoveries and the transformations you may make during your journey.)

Eight short lines.  Eight deep intentions.  Eight meaningful prayers.

What a beautiful way to start a journey.

What a beautiful way to Start. Each. Day. of your Life.

Love, Leslie

I hope you enjoyed today’s Friday-short and find it useful in your life.   I’m still incorporating this as a new habit — repeating these words each morning to set my intention for the day.

In order to dedicate more time to write a book, I’ve decreased the number of weekly TLT posts by one.  Please subscribe above, that way you won’t miss a beat!

Back to the Basics on This Whole ‘Holy Moly’ Thing

I’ve been in New York City since last Friday on our family vacation.  It was the best!  A first for our boys.  I found myself observing them — A LOT.  Not just to make sure they looked both ways before crossing the street (oh, they were so oblivious to big city traffic!), but to watch their reactions, to watch them as they took in the city.  As a parent, to observe them experience the city was my biggest joy.

So, why the nagging feeling in the back of my mind?  Yes, I was sure it was there, day and night.

It was all of the Holy Moly stuff that’s been plaguing my mind. I hadn’t been able to totally Let Go of it.  As much as I wanted to enjoy vacation, I can’t deny that this whole topic of our kids, their future, societal pressures, who they are growing up to be, what am I going to do about it?, ALL OF IT, was looming somewhere in the back of my mind.

As I crawled in bed, our last night there, all of these thoughts, along with the joy of the last several days swirling around in my head, made for quite a muddled soup… I reached for my phone and read the following email:

Leslie,
In response to your “Holy Moly” series

Raising a child is the most eye-awakening experience into one’s self.  I was prepared by who I believe is the most perfect mother ever, but I made choices through my teen and young adult years that may have had me in many places other than where I am today, and I was a GOOD kid!

All to say, as my mother did, I started preparing [my son] Elijah for this world as early as I can remember in an age-appropriate way: sex, drugs, alcohol, ‘bad touches’, racism (and all other types of ‘-isms’).  Understand, never did we talk about any of these things without including the humanity and goodness within others — none of us can get too far without others.

The themes I cherish most (and can go on and on about) are “village” and “journey.”  For the purpose of responding to your article, here’s where I see these themes fitting.

Village

In raising my own children I’ve realized it wasn’t the perfection within my mother, but the perfection within my village, the same village still standing by me today and loving me regardless of my imperfections.  They guide me through storms even if just in their presence and not words (for some, in memory).  No parent, no matter how good they are, can raise a child by themselves.  Each person is complex and every person within the village gives a little something different, rounding out those rough edges and giving them a piece of confidence in the greatness within themselves.  I often say, You have to build them up very high because there are enough folks in this world chipping away at them saying “you can’t,” “you’re not good enough,” “your not smart enough.” — We need to give them something to have left over for them to build their confidence back up and hope they don’t drown their sorrows in unhealthy choices.

Journey

Through Elijah I’m learning it doesn’t matter how perfect I am, or how perfect his village, this life is HIS journey and NOT MINE.  You see, at one time or other, we all had feelings of being invincible, which is what gives us the courage to take wonderful chances as a child/teen/young adult we’d never try as an adult or have to be convinced to try (I love this about young people).  But this invincibility is also the thing allowing them to think the negative effects of drugs, alcohol, unprotected sex, etc will not happen to them.  All we can do as parents is to expect the best we believe our children can deliver.

Yes, expect the best, but then allow them to have their Journey and make their own choices, then pray (pray, pray and pray some more).

I was tested on this thought this year, and in the end I didn’t get the results I wanted through my intelligent teen son, but I was prepared for the worse and told him it was his choice (consequences included).  In the end, he made the right decision and I only pray the fact I stepped back is what gives him the confidence to continue to trust himself to make the right decisions through his journey and to know, Mommy has her own journey and God’s work to do.  God put me here to guide him, prepare him, teach him about himself, but not interfere.  This Journey right here, this is his journey to do God’s work.  If I interfere, how will he ever learn?  And if the Journey is hard — then I pray he will find his way out and testify with the right words to keep someone else in His light and on the right path of their Journey.

A lot said, but basically all we can do as parents is the best we know how, but when our children are presented with the worse, it is THEIR choice.  If we’ve done our best, we can’t blame ourselves and second guess the contents included in how we’ve raised them.

I’m most happy that with some of the ubber bad decisions I made, my Mom prayed for me (and still does).

~~~~

Thank you, oh so very much, Shaunte, for sharing this with me and allowing me to share it with our TLT readers today.

The mothers we’ve heard from recently (click here for the previous mother’s story) have shared from the heart, exposing their truths, their fears, their strength, their vulnerabilities — themselves.  Through their very Real and raw disclosures, I see a theme and a reminder.

Theme

To Trust.  They both wrote of it.  And we all know, I write about it every day.  However, in the grips of Life, it’s sometimes easy to get ahead of ourselves, to want to DO something overt.  Doing something is fine (and I’m still noodling there — maybe a Trust Life Camp for kids??), but with a solid foundation of Trust, that’s what melts away the fear.

Reminder

To Pray.  We can wish and we can want, but Praying and Trust go hand in hand.  Pray that IT IS, Do Your Best, Trust.  Then, Amen.

At the top of the Empire State Building

The comments from you all on this one have been such a blessing.  Please continue to leave your comments, shoot me an email, whatever you’d like.  This is a prime example of how YOUR SHARING has directly helped ME to learn and grow, and no doubt, helped OTHERS as well.

Sending you all Love, Love, and more Love,
Leslie

The Art of Stone Stepping

“Let me not think of my work only as a stepping stone to something else, and if it is, let me become fascinated by the shape of the stone.”  ~ Ze Frank

Ze Frank

How often are you focused on the end result?  I admitted in Friday’s post that being focused on the destination is where I often live, unfortunately, not always enjoying the beauty of the journey.

And what about these stepping stones?  The bits and pieces along the way helping to take us from point A to B and from B to C.  How insignificant the stepping stones appear.  Even annoying or bothersome at times.

However, these stepping stones have been so cleverly placed on our path.  Without them, no progress would be made and that oh-so desperate end goal would never be realized.

Take a moment and stop.  For today, do not rush.  Do not stumble.  Deliberately sit on your stone.  Discover its ridges, its curves.  Become fascinated by its shape.

Ultimately, Trust you are where you’re supposed to be.

 

Ahhh, Simple Pleasures

My friend went away for the three-day Easter weekend.  Before she left, she asked me if I’d stop in and check on her cat, Penny.  Just make sure she has food and water, that sort of thing.

Penny the Cat lives across the street and two doors down.  An easy hop, skip, and a jump for my boys and me to make several times a day.  The first time we went to check on Penny, we arrived with board games and Mockingjay, juice boxes and string cheese, clearly ready to campout for several hours.  And campout we did.  Several rounds of Apples to Apples, a few go’s at Blokus, and three Mockingjay chapters later, we headed back home.

I was surprised by how much I enjoyed myself.  To be out of our house, completely digging the change of scenery, kind of like a mini-vacation, minus the packing and traffic felt great!  In some regards, it was better than a hotel;  we weren’t tempted to turn on the TV, there was no XBOX console in the house, and I specifically asked my friend NOT to leave me her wireless password (those are all pluses to me).  I wanted to enjoy the simple pleasures an empty house and a cat had to offer.

The following morning, I found myself sneaking over in my pj’s and slippers, cuppa tea in one hand, laptop in the other.  I was ready to escape the constant video game/Disney channel noise at my house, eager to feel the quiet of the Cat House.  Poised to enjoy the simple pleasure of quiet for 45 minutes, until my boys‘ timer would sound, and they’d come scrambling across the street, ready for more board games, Mockingjay, and Penny Play-time.  (Win-win for all!)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This became our pattern.  Mom goes over for 45 minutes of quiet, joined by boys later.  And repeat.  Several times a day, for three days.

For me, this falls under the category of Simple Pleasures.  And I say, Never Underestimate the Power of Simple Pleasures.  (Similar to my friend Sally who says, “Never underestimate the power of a pedi!” — I hear you, girl!  Simple pleasures are where it’s at!)

I’m guessing many of you TLT readers are very hard workers, just as I feel I am.  We’ve all heard it said, “Work hard, play hard.”  I admire those who play hard — mostly because I suck at it.  But I need the balance in my life.  So, for me, a more accurate mantra is, “Work hard, relax hard.”

I’ve found that most of my favorite ways to relax involve these simple pleasures:

  • tea with a friend
  • writing
  • being alone
  • one-on-one dinner with another
  • pedicure
  • reading
  • massage
  • talking on the phone
  • hanging out in an empty house with a cat
  • hanging out in My empty house with My DOG

These are relaxing to me.  These fill my cup.  (And none involves crowds or drama.  Very anti-crowd.  Anti-drama.)  These, to me, are better than a vacation.  That’s not to say I’m anti-vacation — I’m not!  But honestly, often there’s a lot of stress leading up to vacation… and sometimes it persists even after you’ve arrived.

That’s why I love relaxing into simple pleasures.  Most are right at my fingertips, require no fuss, and are very doable (if I’ll just make the time to do them).

Let’s face it.  We’re busy people, leading somewhat chaotic lives.  It’s easy for me to see how irritability sets in so easily.  These simple pleasures provide the balance I need for my personal constitution.  I’ve found that with balance, I’m a much kinder, more patient, loving person.  Any irritability I may have experienced seems to bounce right off.  It has no power over me when I’m in a grounded, balanced place.

I believe gratitude/prayer, and Trusting What Is are all effective ways to strike this inner balance.  And a nice helping of Simple Pleasures solidifies that winning formula.

What are your Simple Pleasures?  What fills your cup?  Jot them down, either in the comment section below, or somewhere you can easily see them.  Know what they are, so you can Go There, Do That, as a way of balancing yourself out — on a regular basis.

See what happens when you begin to weave Gratitude/Prayer, Trusting What Is, and Simple Pleasures into your life… little by little, day by day.

Need some help?  Not sure how?  Let me know and I’ll help if I can.  Want someone to celebrate with?  Let me know and I’ll celebrate with you for sure!

I’m interested in your journey.

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Click to Share this message of Simple Pleasures.  Thank you.  Love, Leslie