archive: August, 2009
she's tender and soulful.
she's what she claims to be.
not trying. just being. (her words)
and i was lucky enough to travel south to share some time with her.
and that gorgeous lit-up family of hers.
yes, their baby is really that cute.
yes, their home is a warm, creative sanctuary.
the tea was hot and the conversation fluid.
we settled into kindred yearnings and secret spilling.
she is open, honest and dripping with talent.
i'm sighing sweetly and taking her in.
sighing deeply with faith in true connection.
sighing with gratitude for the discovery of a new (old) friend.
for a preview of our magical morning today, go here.
myself and my children, ritual cleansing at temple tirta empul, bali, august 2008
what if i took the pressure off?
loosened the deadline on this project that i am so eager to float out there and share with you?
what if i decided that, in order to do it well, to make it beautiful and not rushed, it needs to wait until after this trip to india?
what if i pushed back the website launch of the DOORWAYS PROJECT to november 1st?
(i could relax into this last month of summer with my children)
(research camera bags and equipment)
(hang out with the Lonely Planet India)
(muse over possible story angles)
(take more pictures)
(plan mindfully for this incredible journey)
would it matter to anyone else but me?
would they still take me seriously?
(i could slow down the refinement of my vision)
(it might actually be better)
what if i change the rules?
(who made the rules, anyway?)
(there would be more time to pray)
will they still like me?
will i be enough without greater proof of my worthiness?
(it's about being real)
(it's about the truth)
(it's about being free)
a beautiful "stranger" in bali, who smiled the whole way up the palm tree to get the coconut…
(not the best photo technically, but the only one that captured this intimate and unforgettable moment)
- Main Entry: qual·i·fied
- Pronunciation: \ˈkwä-lə-ˌfīd\
- Function: adjective
- Date: 1558
1 a : fitted (as by training or experience) for a given purpose
i walked along the waterfront this morning, while my daughter swam the a.m. workout with the swim team nearby. it's foggy and cool in the mornings again, after an unusual week of early blue. i'm better suited for the cool mist at the start of the day. i like the time to ease into the brightness before the sun demands that i get out and enjoy the day; especially today, as i've been fighting off a little cold. as i walked, i took advantage of the muted sensations of this mild illness; the inner fog lessened the din and i found it easier to turn my attention inward.
today, i was thinking about something i said on the vlog, something i've been known to struggle with throughout my life. it's the idea of being qualified, the "who in the hell do i think i am" question, as it relates to this new venture i am on. i've spent far too much time in my life feeling inadequate because of some missing letters after my name. perhaps having a childhood identity that hinged largely upon wearing the "smart one" hat wasn't helpful toward a more expansive positive self-image.
only today, i wasn't indulging these self-deprecating tapes. i was, instead, running a retrospective in my head of all the key experiences in my life that play into this current manifestation of me. the ways i've always told stories and captured images (even if only in my head) and the ways i've always lunged toward beauty and connection (or quietly longed for them). i thought about my "formal" education, a handful of bachelor's degrees (psychology, sociology and nursing), and of how the things i know from those experiences may actually be useful in my travels and in the understanding of people's stories. i thought of the children that i will be interacting with through vatsalya in india, young ones who've been rescued from unthinkable struggle, and of how my thirteen years of mothering more than qualifies my heart to connect with them. i thought of my travels in my younger years to alaska and new mexico to spend summers working with children and adults with disabilities. i teared up remembering the births, and deaths, that i've been privileged to attend. passages that stop time and offer a glimpse of divinity in it's purest form.
i then thought of my spiritual path, and the many turns that it has taken over the years; and how, now, i know that god is only a breath away. there were other things, too. other travels, relationships, mentors, courses, classes. unexpected memorable encounters like the one in the photo above. the stuff we put on the resume of life. the things we've seen and touched. the ways we've been opened and shattered. the times when we've been propelled into a moment we think we can't handle and we've come out the other side changed. stronger. softer. more deeply in love with, and more reverent of, what mary oliver calls our "wild and precious life."
it all counts. i encourage you to take some time to run the tally of your experiences and see if you can come up with anything short of gratitude and certainty that, simply by living your wild and precious life, you are perfectly qualified to take the next step toward your passion. it's all about living authentically and purposefully. from there, the resume takes care of itself…
women gathered and free, circling a dear spirit about to be married. friendships freshly planted and deeply rooted. purity in the wine, the food, and the connection. retreat. laughter. yoga. the honest telling of secrets. hawks and hummingbirds. lightness and transparency. the oldest of trees and a sky that fades into beyond. shared slumber and fresh figs.
it was through the intention and grace of this lovely bride-to-be that the weekend took form. and it was such a gift to capture her, honor her and share in her story.