Thursday, January 5, 2017

I am the vortex

"Follow your bliss and the universe will 
open doors for you where there were only walls."

Joseph Campbell

Familiar with the old saying,  Be careful what you wish for because you might just get it?   I learned a long time ago to let go of specifics when it comes to making requests of an unlimited Universe.  Before I figured out that to get exactly what I wanted often came with way too many strings attached, I struggled mightily with my limiting, self-imposed parameters. Yeah, I may have been able to learn how to knit an incredibly intricate sweater, but in the end, when I tried it on, it still looked like a burlap sack.  Sure, I may have gotten the job I thought I wanted, but didn’t earn the salary and benefits I needed.  I may have garnered the attention of some object of my desire only to soon discover that what he really wanted was less than desirable.  Still, if what Joseph Campbell says is true, that translates into an ever-evolving awareness of the intentions I put out into the world.
Because God knows that’s what I’ll receive in return.

I’m all good with how karma works, both positively and negatively.  In fact, it’s easier for me to let go of circumstances I can't control by simply telling myself that in time more will be revealed.  That whatever I'm struggling with now could mean I'm due for a little attitude adjustment.  Perhaps I've called it in because I need to look more closely at the way I live my life, the things I say or do, all of the day-to-day choices I make.
In my late twenties, I used to tell my friends, “I want to have a partner, be a parent, and get published by the time I turn thirty-five.”  When that didn’t happen, no matter how many times I tried to push the river, I took a different tack.  In my early forties, having a child no longer appealed to me as it once did, so I focused on writing…and left the door open for the possibility of partner appearing in my life.
“You’ll never find anyone hanging around your house writing books and teaching yoga,” some friends would tell me.  “You need to get out and meet people.”
“I don’t want to,” I’d always reply.  “I’m not a bar person…and I hate the idea of going to a single’s mixer.”
“How about internet dating?” someone inevitably asked. 
“Been there…done that,” I shot back.  “Ick.  No, thank you.”
Last year, one of my friends sighed, “Well Kate, you’re going to have to do something different if you really want a relationship.  How else are you going to meet a good man?”
Not deterred in the slightest, I replied, “I’m going to take care of myself.  I’m going to do what I love.  I’m going to go places that resonate with me.  When I’m ready and when he’s ready, he’ll just show up at my door.”
“How often does that happen?” she asked, rolling her eyes.
“It doesn’t matter,” I replied.  “Just watch and see.”
Shortly thereafter, that’s exactly what happened…although I didn’t know it at the time.

I spent the better part of 2015 writing and promoting THE LACE MAKERS, all the while working out, teaching yoga, reading books, meditating, gardening, and a host of other things that allowed me to create much-needed balance in my life.  I didn’t think much about finding The One; I was more interested in staying open to whatever was right in front of me.  Opportunities came and went, yet none of the men sparked more than another lesson to file under “never again”.
This past August, I spent a week hiking in Sedona.  On the first glorious morning, my friend and I made our way up the craggy sides of Boyton Canyon to find the energy vortex near the apex.  As our planet is a living thing, a vortex is a place in nature where the Earth is exceptionally alive and healthy.  It can also be a place where there's increased energy and vitality.  Acting as an amplifier, a vortex will magnify whatever we bring to it whether it be on a physical, mental, emotional, or spiritual level.  In other words, being in close proximity to a vortex is instant karma in action.
When Sandy and I climbed higher, feeling the surge of energy in the red rocks of Boyton Canyon, I knew we had found the vortex.  Standing on the precipice, I spontaneously opened my arms like a tuning fork and turned in every direction, marveling at the incredible beauty of the cornflower blue sky, a backdrop to the vast landscape that surrounded us.  Breathing deeply, I silently asked that whatever I truly needed might be brought into my life, and that I might have the awareness to recognize and appreciate it.  Then I said a prayer of humble gratitude for the opportunity to be in that moment, knowing full well that what I intended would magically appear. 
Little did I know it already had six months earlier, and that shortly after my return from Sedona, the little seed that had been planted in March would quickly sprout above the earth.  The man I’m now seeing arrived in my life last spring, and our friendship grew and blossomed throughout the summer months.  The week after my return from Sedona, we made a date to attend a local concert together.  Six weeks later, I realized I was in love with him.  
How did we meet you ask?  I was sitting in my office, happily writing with the window open when he walked by with a mutual friend.  My beloved didn’t even need to show up at the front door, for it was clandestinely fortuitous to meet him while I was doing what I love best…well, what I now love second-best. 
At Thanskgiving I told him, “Now I can finally find my way into the publishing world.”
“Why’s that?” he asked.
“Because you’re here,” I replied.  “No matter what happens in my professional life, I’ll always have you.  My priorities are straight…so that door can finally open because I know I’ll never be able to write a sentence or a blog or a book that means more to me than you do.”
Sure enough, a week later I heard from an agent in NYC who requested the full manuscript of THE LACE MAKERS.  I eagerly sent him a copy, then soon after discovered his personal Facebook page.  I wasn’t all that surprised to know that his first name is the same as my sweetheart’s, but I was amused to find that his wife’s name is Kate.  He has two daughters, just like my beloved.  He plays electric guitar and enjoys fishing…just like my dear one.  
Coincidence or not?  
You decide. 
As for me, I live by the truth that what I meaningfully sow, I’ll most definitely reap.  This winter, I’m overjoyed to embrace the fruitful gifts of following my heart, living with integrity, and never giving up hope that if I plant optimistic seeds of intention, then let go of the outcome, a bouquet of beautiful blessings will certainly follow.  

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Sunday, January 1, 2017

All things new

It’s been quite a while since I’ve written an original blog.  Curiously enough, the last 2016 essay I published is dated November 11th, the day I decided to take a leap of faith and perhaps change my life for the better.  I’m infinitely thankful that I summoned the courage, because for the past couple of months I’ve been happily preoccupied by diving into an incredibly loving relationship.  It wasn’t what I was expecting or even looking for, but since last spring, time has slowly evolved a captivating friendship into something I can’t quite put into words.  That’s why I’ve put my journal and laptop aside, allowing myself to be immersed in living life…not just writing about it. 
I used to think that once I found a man with whom I could fully be myself, everything would change.  I imagined it to be like a lightning bolt of realization that would blow everything out of the water so that I could begin again, brand new and utterly transformed.  But that didn’t happen.  The day-to-day responsibilities of life are still the same.  I work, I pay the bills, I enjoy time with friends.  Yet what I’ve discovered is that the reality of loving someone…and being loved in return…is wholly unlike anything I’ve ever experienced. 
Now I find that everything is brand new.  When I wake up in the morning, there’s another person in my life and in my heart.  Someone else to pray and care for.  Someone with whom I laugh until our sides ache.  Someone who came into my life so magically, I almost missed it.  Since we met last March, I’ve slowly discovered that all things are brand new, for my beloved allows me to open myself that much more, to expand my horizons, to experience even the most ordinary aspects of life on a deeper level because he’s standing right next to me, revealing himself as well. 
Neither one of us can define what we’re creating, for there’s no definite way to describe how we feel.  Love doesn’t even being to scratch the surface.  Last week, my dear told me that the oneness he feels between us in unlike anything he’s ever known and I simply nodded, knowing I couldn't describe it any better.  It’s not a fairytale we’re living, but a real-life, moment-to-moment encounter with each other.  It doesn’t matter if we’re playing Trivial Pursuit, watching a movie, or walking through the grocery store.  Any moment is extraordinary because we make it so…and because I’m wise enough to appreciate the remarkable man who is blessing my life with so much love and laughter, I find I’m overflowing with happiness.

On New Year’s Eve, we spent most of the day together taking care of our collective responsibilities while looking forward to a quiet evening at home.  As my car turned into the neighborhood, I noticed the odometer ticking from 9,999 miles to 10,000.  I brightly smiled.  “That’s a good omen for the new year, right honey?” 
My beloved good-naturedly agreed, saying, “Optimistic in spirit you are.  Positive insight you have.  Happy you will be.”
Laughing heartily, I replied, “Love you I do...there is no try.”
(Did I mention my sweetheart and I enjoy exchanging Yoda-speak?)
Close to midnight, decked out in black sweats and a dapper new hat, he strapped on his electric guitar and played me a little Jimi Hendrix, then some of his original compositions.  Relaxing on the couch, I was lost in the moment, thankful that I had finally come home to myself so that I can share my life with a man who surprises me more each day with his exceptionally hilarious humor, his unique perspective on the gifts of grace and inner peace, his ability to spread love to anyone and everyone he meets.
When 12:00 arrived, my beloved said, “You know, we could think of this moment as a brand-new beginning, but I kinda do that every morning, you know?”
“I do,” I replied.  "Every single day since we got together has been a new beginning."
The new year heralds a clean slate, another chance to set things right, an opportunity to stretch ourselves beyond who we think we are into something that might be challenging, but hopefully worth the work.   As 2017 dawns, I’m happily closing the door on a solitary life that was necessary to lead me to a man who has allowed me to finally leave the past behind so that we can walk hand-in-hand into whatever the present moment holds. 
Now more than ever, I'm infinitely and incredibly blessed.