Tuesday, January 29, 2013

nourishment adventure

dear people

I'm one of those lucky souls who has a great relationship with their siblings. These two amazing people are so dear to my heart it makes me teary on a regular basis. And I had the delightful good fortune to get to spend this past weekend with them, which doesn't happen too often since we're spread all over the globe. Today I'm feeling so full up from time with them and my sister's wonderful family, from time away from the regular bourgeois stresses and strains of my life, and likely from time away from a lot of the technology that distracts me. Once again, I've been in the lovely travel zone of in-the-moment. Plus, I read two Sun magazines and caught up on my sleep. Ah! And now it feels so great to be home with my sweetie. Hooray for travel and hooray for coming home!

Monday, January 21, 2013

hibernation adventure

evening view

While the weather during this long weekend has been lovely - bright blue skies every day - and we had the best of intentions to hit a local trail with all our new gear, somehow the charm of staying cozy and warm in our sweet home won out. I feel like a slumbering bear being nourished, not by layers of fat in this case, but by all the lovely books and movies that I gathered in 2012. Here's a list of some of the goodness I've been delighted and inspired by lately: Wild Mind, Writing for My Life, My Sister's Sister, The Five-Year Engagement, Jeff Who Lives at Home, and Wild Target. What's nourishing you these days?

Sunday, January 13, 2013

ground adventure

dewy cabbage

It was a good week on the ground, with lots of opportunities for practice. It's easy for me to get sucked into mental spin, but I'm so grateful for all the teachings that are available in these modern days, especially this lovely book by Pema I finished this week: Living Beautifully with Uncertainty and Change. So when I get caught in obsessive thinking, I've been stopping, feeling my feet on the ground (this always feels great), following my breath being breathed, and thinking "Stay, stay." When I'm back in the present moment, life is always manageable and I just do the next thing. There's so much to enjoy and love in the world around me, once I'm out of my head, which likes to suck me into this:

danger hole

Sunday, January 6, 2013

fear and imperfection adventure

narrow over harpeth

So I'm fairly afraid of heights. This mostly doesn't get in the way. I'm OK enough that I can get up on the roof to clean out the gutters. I have no problems with driving over bridges, flying in airplanes, or being in tall buildings. But out in the open, with no railings, I'm seriously acrophobic.

I love that Rodg is so interested in hiking these days, but whereas I tend to stick to earthbound trails, part of the fun for him is taking the camera along. And what's more photogenic than a view? So as you saw, last weekend we hit a local trail and all was well, until we came around the side of the lake overview and the trail literally turned into something from my nightmares, with seeming sharp drop-offs on both sides. Rodg is pretty much just as afraid of heights as I am, but the lure of a good photo makes him a bit braver. Still, he was very nice about our turning around and going back down the trail.

But the moment stuck with me and unearthed an interesting core belief I seem to have - that I should be able to do anything. Less than that is really unacceptable. And so we hit my perfectionism once again. And my inability to laugh kindly at myself or show self-compassion. It was when I was talking with Joe on Thursday that he mentioned that as an Enneagram Type Seven, under stress I go to the compulsive side of Type One - perfectionism.

That was a good insight to have that day, especially when the universe provided a follow-up message about perfectionism in the form of a kind, young police officer who pulled me over and asked if I was aware that my registration had expired (in November!). I was really surprised, because I remembered getting the new stickers, which I then pulled out of my glove compartment, attached to said new registration - oops!

Thank God it was at this point that my sense of humor was returned to me. Mostly because I'd totally ridden poor Rodg about putting the stickers on his plates back in August. My imperfection was totally not lost on me, as well as a little hypocrisy thrown in for good measure. Ah, off the pedestal again! It always feels so much better to be on the ground, but I hate the fall.

feeling the fear
Looking terrified (and a little triumphant) way up high above the Harpeth today - I love how nature seems to have my back...

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

true adventure


Happy New Year dear reader!

I'm delighted to announce that my word for 2013 is TRUE. I've found myself more and more drawn to truth the past couple of years, which has even manifested in my lack of interest in fiction and desire to read memoir after memoir. I want to know what really happens to people, how they really feel about it, what their truth is. I'm tired of superficiality, I'm tired of pretending I'm experiencing something I'm not, I'm tired of pretending I am something I'm not. I bought the tote pictured above from the lovely Jen Lee at Squam last fall and I love carrying it around. It does feel like my creed: Just be true.

I love the definitions for TRUE: steadfast, loyal, honest, just, essential, rightful, accurate. And there's even a verb form: to make level, square, balanced, or concentric. Ah, I'm in love!

Last night I attended a New Year's Eve Taizé service that included a labyrinth walk - totally amazing:

New Year's Eve Taize Service and Labyrinth

I've never attended a Taizé service before, but they've been recommended to me as a contemplative Christian service. As soon as I heard that the New Year's Eve service included a labyrinth, I knew I had to go. And I'm so delighted I did. I let go of all expectations and totally opened to my truth of the experience and here's what I loved about it: the labyrinth was a really powerful form of walking meditation and the music put me in a very quiet, open place, plus I loved the tranquil celebration of the changing of the year in community.

It would have been very easy for me to look at the other people there and try to emulate my interpretation of their experience as they knelt in the middle of the labyrinth with palms open. I could feel myself trying to ramp up some kind of mystical experience. But that's not my truth. My truth is often silent and this service took me to a very deep place of silence. And I will be back. I love my Wednesday nights with the Insight Meditation Group and I look forward to going to more Taizé services. That's my truth.

Another true love of mine is getting out in nature. Last weekend Rodg and I took advantage of a rare sunny day and hit a local trail we've been curious about. Here are some photos from our walk. Hope you enjoy! And Happy 2013!

berries and sun

view above hidden lake

ruin and weeds

view at hidden lake