Authenticity trumps fake positivity.
I would like to know at what point in history people became so resistant to dealing with physical pain and painful emotions. We numb ourselves with medication and substances and screens (🙋♀️me included), and mindlessly answer "good" when people ask us how we are.
At what point did we decide it is more important to give an impression that we have it all together, or to hustle for our worthiness, instead of showing up with truth and integrity.
When did our tribes dissolve and we stop coming together to lift each other up in times of need, no longer able to handle the emotions of others, replacing unconditional love with "good vibes only".
It's time to start being real 💞. Let's love ourselves anyway even when we don't feel the good vibes, and love ourselves just as much when we do. Let's learn to be vulnerable and share how we are when someone asks how we are. Let's learn to hold the space for others who need help getting back to good vibes.
And if you are someone who is authentically feeling good vibes 100% of the time, share your beautiful light with those who need some of that energy, rather than telling them their vibes aren't welcome. 💝
Authenticity trumps fake positivity.
Why celebrate the birthday of someone who is no longer physically with us?
I woke up yesterday feeling anything but celebratory. I would have preferred to have stayed in bed alone all day long. I was emotional and wanted the time & space to honour that.
But with 2 kids, 2 dogs and 2 cats, my life isn't just about me. I got out of bed to 2 excited kids who wanted to show me what they had made. C had crafted this "Happy Birthday Danma" banner and N was so proud she had taped it up on the window by herself, together with some fairy lights. They were only 5 and 7 when their Grandma "Danma" died, but the memories of her are fresh in their hearts and they are doing everything they can to keep those memories alive. It is not so much a conscious effort for them as it is just a natural part of our new normal.
Yesterday was the second time we celebrated my Mom's birthday since she died last year.
We weren't celebrating that she turned a year older. She didn't.
We weren't wishing her happiness and health for the years to come. She will never have that.
We were celebrating her birth day, expressing gratitude for the life and love she gifted us, and honouring everything she was while she was with us on the earth plane.
After spending the day at a floorball tournament for C and a year end party at the school, where I had some great convos with other parents/friends about life, death and emotions, we came home to celebrate. N wanted to make a cake, and both kids wanted Vondue (plant-based fondue), a tradition we had started with my Mom when she used to visit us around her birthday. We set a place for her at the table, a tradition my husband started last year.
We talked about our favorite memories, and then the dining light started turning off and on. A lot. It has done that before when I am working at the table alone at night, but it has never done that at dinner. With the whole family there. And so often. Even Christoph said it is pretty weird. We joked that it was my Mom. But was it a joke? N concluded that Danma must be playing a game with us. When she turns the light off, we have to turn it on as quickly as possible. It was bittersweet. The kids insisted on lighting birthday candles and singing happy birthday. She would have been 67. 67 years of touching people's hearts, of making a difference in their lives, of inspiring love and gratitude.
Thank you Mom for everything you were when you were here, and for all of the beautiful moments you still inspire now that you are on the other side. We love you so, so much!
In our loving kindness women's circle last night, one of the topics that came up is how our focus has the power to change our perception of pretty much everything. Where our attention goes, is where the energy flows.
You know how when you buy a new car, suddenly you start seeing those cars everywhere? Well, it's not that a bunch of people copied you and suddenly went out and bought the exact same car. You brought this car into your awareness and therefore started noticing it everywhere.
If we choose to focus on what's lacking in our life or what is negative or where we feel we aren't good enough, then we will see all the signs, the "proof" that we are right, all the while missing all the positivity that is happening simultaneously. Likewise, if we choose to focus on what's working, on positive aspects of people or situations, no matter how challenging, then we prime ourselves to flow into more positivity.
I have been frustrated and worried lately with some struggles we've been having with the kids, feeling at a bit of a loss on how to move forward. Then, yesterday morning, as I was walking the dogs in the forest, it suddenly dawned on me...I have been focusing on the problems, on what's not working!
Life feels so much lighter and happier when I step back and list all of the wonderful things that are working well, rather than getting lost in what isn't. Perception is everything!
It is constant work in progress to check if my perception is serving me or those around me. And, oddly enough, it can feel quite exciting when limiting thought patterns become clear, because that is when we get the chance to work on them and experience the beauty of personal growth. 💝
So grateful for these two today.
I was driving home from teaching yoga last night, when suddenly this wave of emotion came over me. The tears starting streaming down my cheeks as memories of my Mom flooded my heart and mind.
Was it something in yoga class that triggered it? Was it the fact that her birthday is in 3 days, or that she usually came to visit us this time of year? Whatever the reason, her absence is heavily present at the moment.
I came home and opened the front door to be greeted by these 2 fluffballs, so incredibly excited to see me. We humans have so much to learn from the way animals express unconditional love, and these two are extra special to me because they remind me of my Mom.
Max and Molly are my Mom's dogs. Or I guess technically they "were" my Mom's dogs, who have found a new forever home with us until it's their time to meet her in the spirit plane.
Talking about my Mom in past tense is still so foreign to me, not only because her essence is still so present in my heart, in her dogs and in our family conversations, but also because she will always BE my Mom.
Yes, her body is gone, but is unconditional love a physical element of the body that dies along with it? Or could it be that love is on a deeper soul level, immeasureable, devoid of time and form?
Grief. Gratitude. The more you love, the more you hurt. And it is so worth it; I wouldn't trade that love for anything.
Where our attention goes is where our energy flows.
I have been feeling rather drained lately and so I started looking more closely at where I am focusing my attention. Identifying energy vampires - those people, habits or things that leave us feeling heavy and perhaps off kilter. And identifying energy boosters - the people, habits or things that help us feel uplifted, motivated and generally content.
The first law of energy states that energy cannot be created or destroyed; energy can just change shape and form. Are you aware of the energy vampires in your life? What do you do to shift your energy state from feeling the batteries are drained to feeling fully charged?
What we focus on is where our energy goes. We can either focus on what we don't have, or we can focus on what we do have. Which one will make you feel more content, more positive, more fulfilled?
Today I am focusing on gratitude. I was filled with gratitude this weekend as I looked around and saw all the beauty in my life. 🧞♂️We had a slow, connecting, and nourishing family day yesterday - starting with our new weekly family meeting followed by hours of crafting and sewing. 🎄The fireplace was lit and cheesy Christmas tunes were cranked. N sewed her first dress and it actually fits and looks adorable! 💃My Mom would have been so proud of her and would have rushed out to buy a bunch of fun fabric.💝 My husband cooked dinner, and responded with patience and love when I got mad at him over something stupid. 🤷♂️ I stayed up until the wee hours of the morning working on a new project with a friend, and am so excited about what she and I could create together. 🧚♀️ Today we fulfilled a long overdue promise to take the kids to the indoor waterslides @alpamare_ch . 🧜♀️ As opposed to other times, this time I actually felt genuinely happy to be climbing hundreds of stairs over and over again while wiping the burn of chlorine out of my eyes.🤽♀️ I had such a good time playing with the kids and feeling like a kid myself again! 🤹♀️
What are you grateful for today?
When I worked in the corporate world, I was used to relying on praise and external motivation to fuel my drive. I was always told what a good job I did, was promoted often, and was generously compensated in $$$ terms for my output.
One of the most unexpected changes of becoming a stay-at-home Mom was the instant vacuum of external validation. Suddenly, no one was telling me I was doing a good job or encouraging me to keep going. No one was giving me a paycheck for all the time, sweat and tears (there were a lot of them!) that I put into doing my best at Mom'ing and homemaking. Instead, the positive validation was replaced with the (normal but exhausting) demands of 2 little kids, a husband who wondered what I did all day long, and my own frustration that I felt I was working 24/7 with no measurable (or valued) output.
Part of the problem is that the output I was (and still am) producing is just not valued in our society. Cooking, cleaning, grocery shopping, chauffuering kids, coaching them through their emotions (the list goes on). All necessary jobs in making society function, and yet almost invisible.
But the other part is that, already as young children, external validation is built into the system. We learn to manage our emotions through rewards and punishment from our parents, school grades, sports awards, and the opinions of others.
After leaving the workforce in 2012, I turned to my Mom, who was the one constant cheerleader who had always been there for me. While I didn't always believe what she told me (she was afterall prone to bias 😆), her encouragement went a long way.
And now that she is gone, I am having to learn to rely on myself. To be my own cheerleader. I recently read a phrase that went something like this: "if we live for someone else's praise, we will die from their criticism."
I am learning that validation from the outside is completely unreliable and superficial. Self love, confidence and happiness can only come from within. So simple in theory and so challenging in practice! 💗
Michelle Borner, a mom on 23 missions, blogs about her Deep Thoughts on a wide range of topics from parenting to conscious living to lessons from brain cancer.
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