It is what it is what it is*

“We have a choice. We can spend our whole life suffering because we can’t relax with how things really are, or we can relax and embrace the open-endedness of the human situation, which is fresh, unfixated, unbiased.”~Pema Chödrön

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Recently I am working hard to accept this notion of accepting what is. (I’ve been working on it for years & years now, it seems; why is this *little* concept the hardest thing to master? It sounds like a no-brainer, right?) Some days, I see so, so clearly how so much of our suffering (crankiness, restlessness, anxiety-tinged moments…) is self-imposed, merely getting caught in that unproductive wormhole of wishing for things to be other than they are.

On those days when I can simply ride the wave and take it all as it comes (the good, the bad, the unexpected, the intuited), I see how free I feel, how unattached I am to the outcome, how much more effortlessly things seem to just fall into place.

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Life recently has been chock full of celebrations, kind gifts, soothing SUN, lots of movement, doctors appointments (to FINALLY get to the bottom of some food allergy stuff, touch wood), several wonderful *coincidences*, a couple mild disappointments, a lot of productivity (on some fronts) and loads of procrastination (in other areas). Some people I care about deeply have been going through really tough things, and I’ve been feeling their burdens from afar (hello, Pisces…Also, I learn more and more that, for better or for worse, I have the true characteristics of an empath).

But overall, I feel the hopefulness of spring blooming all around me. This is a lovely time of year, really. I’m working hard to roll with the punches, not get stuck in the muck.

Bottom line: Life has been FULL.  And that’s mostly a really good thing. Because of it, though—this weekend I’m demanding some quiet and stillness for myself (sometimes tricky for me), before things rev up again next week. Fun/busy/exciting happenings linger on the horizon, and I’m determined to steady myself in the interim.

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Don’t worry about losing your way. If you do, pain will remind you to find your path again. Joy will let you know when you are back on it.~Martha Beck

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For whatever reason, I’ve lost my way this week. (So soon after your amazing, lucky Irish adventure, you ask? Yes, I know… I know.)

It’s been a tough one. A few fun gatherings have happened, some good things are falling into place, the flowers have popped, the sun has shone, and yet…Yet.

I’ve just felt off (physically and mentally). I’ve been swimming upstream—fighting the current, fighting myself, fighting what is. It’s been absolutely exhausting.

So I’ve gone back to my arsenal—yoga, family, amazing friends, long emails and phone chats full of wise & patient counsel, long walks, culture doses, healthy eating, brainless trash TV, the sage words (read and re-read) of some of my favorite bloggers and authors. I’m getting there. I’m surfacing. I’m looking more at the root of it all—which is hard. I guess we just have to believe that each time we dive a little deeper into the dark, we’ll emerge a little higher into the light— more in line with where we ultimately want to be.

The ebbs and flows, eh?

Here’s something/someone who never fails to bring me joy:)

 

Ebbs & flows: a photo gallery

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Sometimes, like now, when words feel scarce, photos will just have to do.
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Recently, I’ve been in need of some major comfort.

Last week, the world unexpectedly (unjustly) lost one of the best people I know. A kind, gentle, beautiful, thoughtful woman.
One of my best friends lost her mom.
There aren’t sufficient words.

But, as life goes, the week also brought really, really good news. A college friend became a first-time father!
And America voted and got four more years. YES.

The world got just a wee bit closer to accepting equality for all. Progress. Relief.

I’ve been feeling far from home. Too far. This weekend: I longed to be on a Mexican beach, under the stars, cocktail in hand, with all my friends; at a Philly baby shower celebrating my dear friend’s soon-to-arrive-daughter; in upstate New York eating some greasy Denny’s grub with my parents and my grandfather. I felt I was missing out on a lot.

Instead, I was here.

And I tried my very best to embrace that. We finally got some sun! We deserved it. Gray is tiring.

Loving what is. (Repeating this mantra…)

Fleeting blue skies. Long bike rides and meandering, exploratory walks with spontaneous pitstops. Getting out in the world. Long-awaited catch-up over a delicious home-cooked meal with family/former roomies. Forcing myself to be social even when peeling my warm and cozy body off the couch feels hard. Without fail, these things always help lift the sadness.

Finally, I feel like I am finding some of my people here. Everyone needs a good group of strong, fun, inspiring women in her life. Sunday brunches should not be underrated.

Lastly, music. Live. Music. Ahhhh. (On that note, here’s my latest interview with the amazingly talented Ben Sollee.)

Ebbs and flows, indeed.

I hope you all had wonderful weekends full of cozy comfort or festive family and friend time, or whatever it was you felt you needed.


(Courtesy yourcourageouslife.com)