A New Year to Rise

Close this year’s door
not in fear but in love.
Love yourself enough
to never look back,
but face the new year
with dreams in sight.
Turn your shining self
toward the coming year,
filled with the possibility
of a fearless, open heart.
This year, let love in
then let love grow.
Find a place for gratitude
to permeate your being.
Manifest your intention
with action-filled faith.
Look toward the moon
when darkness starts to fall.
For the sun will always rise
with a new chance to shine.

–—Karilyn Owens

This One Precious Life

At the beginning of the year, some unexpected punches were thrown my family’s way (on top of more personal upheaval in my world). The ways in which these storms changed my perspective on life is countless. I learned the hard way that life can truly change in a matter of seconds. I learned that we are here on this Earth to love.

I turned to writing to release the painstaking space my thoughts occupied in my mind. I turned to books to find underlying meaning from tragic events. I turned to quotes to lift up my soul and give my heart joy. I stumbled upon a particular quote that stuck out above the rest for the urgency it evoked in me. It is as if the words reached into my chest and starting to pulsate my heart again. These words are actually an excerpt from Mary Oliver’s poem, The Summer Day.

The Summer Day by Mary Oliver

Who made the world?
Who made the swan, and the black bear?
Who made the grasshopper?
This grasshopper, I mean-
the one who has flung herself out of the grass,
the one who is eating sugar out of my hand,
who is moving her jaws back and forth instead of up and down-
who is gazing around with her enormous and complicated eyes.
Now she lifts her pale forearms and thoroughly washes her face.
Now she snaps her wings open, and floats away.
I don’t know exactly what a prayer is.
I do know how to pay attention, how to fall down
into the grass, how to kneel down in the grass,
how to be idle and blessed, how to stroll through the fields,
which is what I have been doing all day.
Tell me, what else should I have done?
Doesn’t everything die at last, and too soon?
Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life?

Nearly a year has passed since I discovered this poem, and a lifetime full of lessons and wisdom have graced my heart. I can say with certainty that I am now more alive than I have ever been. And, I now have my own list of answers to Mary’s prompt. It seems fitting to share them as 2015 comes to a close.

So Mary, this is what I plan to do:

I would love like I’ve never been hurt.

I would kiss someone just to see what their lips feel like on mine.

I would tell someone I love them even if I met them that day.

I would put my heart on the line just so I can feel the depth of another soul touching mine.

I would laugh until my insides hurt.

I would be brutally honest with myself and others.

I would sing at the top of my lungs and pretend an audience is listening.

I would dance in my underwear to my favorite songs.

I would hug each person like I mean it so they can feel how much I care.

I would make mistakes because only by doing and failing can you learn to get up again.

I would spend time with the one I love even if I know it could be the last time.

I would let my ego down gently because I don’t always need to feel safe; I want to feel alive.

I would take a road trip just to feel the sensation of sand between my toes and water against my skin.

I would tell someone how much I love them even if they cannot return the sentiment. I’d rather live in love than die in fear.

I would forgive the people who hurt me, because holding onto grudges is actually hurting me.

I would understand that no one does anything ill-intentioned just to cause me pain. Their actions are simply a reflection of how small they feel inside.

I would feel every emotion available to me as it arises knowing that pent up energy in my body will only hold me back from bringing new, positive energy in.

I would believe that I deserve a happy ending and know that I have every bit of power to create it.

I would surrender to the truth in my heart even if it kills me.

I would chase after my dreams knowing anything placed on my heart is because I am powerful enough to manifest it.

I would live to serve my purpose of spreading light and love wherever I go.

I would live in the moment and feel the calmness that each passing second brings me.

I would not chase after love but learn to be love.

I would know that my raised vibration will attract those people that will meet me in love.

I would not date with the end goal of marriage; I would date to give and receive the ultimate goal of love.

I would dare to say what I mean and mean what I say.

I would reveal my layers to another knowing that my vulnerability invites the same in them.

I would share my story not to relive the past, but to emblazon the truth in my heart so others may be touched in a way that moves them.

I would know that the truth will always come out; it’s not my job to unveil it for others when their own path will lead the way.

I would face my fears instead of calculating every move to avoid them.

I would accept every wrong turn as a blessing for the place it brought me to.

I, when faced with a crossroads, would vehemently choose love, every single time. I already know where fear leads me.

I would not worry about loved ones for I would empower them with love.

I would search for every barrier against love and learn that I’ve been programmed to fear.

I would trust that on the path of love I will be given everything I need to succeed; I must only be willing to listen and act on my intuition.

I would understand that hope is not faith; faith requires action while hope begs.

I would listen to the longing in my heart.

I would climb the mountain even if it takes all day; the feeling at the top will overcome all.

I would hold my family close and embrace them for all they are instead of all they are not.

I would bow in humble gratitude everyday for the blessings in my life; I know I cannot invite in more blessings if I am not thankful for what I have.

I would jump at any and every opportunity that comes my way for I know that it could be the one chance I get to meet a new friend or discover a key for my path.

I would allow my heart to bleed and my soul to sing.

I would know that everything happens for a reason; the synchronicity behind seemingly unimportant events is there if I look for it.

I would know that if I feel something deep in my body center it is because I am being urged to listen to my inner knowingness.

I would choose not to resist life, but to allow all that is flowing through me to pass with ease.

I would know that in this moment, I am exactly where I need to be; I am being prepared for the next step of my journey.

I would know that until I have reached my next goal, I will wholeheartedly embrace where I am now and love myself through it.

I would know that life doesn’t always make sense but it does have a purpose; it’s when I find that purpose that it begins to make sense.

I would know that the universe will bring me whatever serves my highest purpose. All I must do is ask for it and act as though I already have it.

So as 2015 comes to a rumbling halt (and for all that you brought this year, I am deeply grateful), I kindly say see you never. This year will always be fondly (and not so fondly) thought of as the year of love, second chances and harsh but necessary lessons.

If something doesn’t excite your soul, find something that does. If you don’t love with every ounce of your being, look underneath as to why. If life doesn’t seem like a grand adventure, change your perspective. And so, on the verge of 2016 I leave you with this:

“Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?”

-Mary Oliver

The Basin of Love

Helen Keller quote

In the beautiful heart space I occupy daily, my subconscious floats to uncharted waters to feel the depth of love in my heart. I drifted off to an alternate universal love last night that allowed my heart to soar and expand in new ways. I found myself escaping a less than ideal situation through a small opening in a gate where I took off on an adventure with a lover. As we held hands and ran from our past situation (heartbreak represented here), we embarked on a journey together where neither knew the destination.

We discovered a small, lush green valley along our route that held a pristine basin of water in its lowest point. We were left rather tattered and dirty from the trip (as most relationships do on the uprise), so we took a dip in the water, hands still entwined. We she’d our clothes to wash them in the water; as he undressed his musculature revealed and the suppleness of his skin glistened in the reflection of the basin. He moved toward me and placed his hands on my face. He felt the line of my jaw, the peaks of my cheekbones and the curve of my lips. His large hands cupped my face and he felt the shape of my head. We sat in silence as he felt the exchange of energy this encounter brought. I was so entranced by his soul that I never realized he was blind. His hands moved down to my chest as he felt the quickening palpitations of my heart. He noticed the size of my heart grow with every excited beat. 

As more time passed, the communication between our hearts filled the silent air. When he finally spoke, it was the first time I heard words from his lips. I had felt his heart speak but now it was audible. He told me, “I wanted to feel the beauty of your face through your structure. I wanted to feel the softness of your lips before they touch mine. I wanted to feel your heart beat before it became one with mine. And I wanted you to feel seen even without sight. I choose to recognize the way you feel not the way you look. I choose to feel the way you light up my soul simply because you are light. And I choose to linger in the spaces of your heart, the ones I fall into between each beat.”

In that moment, I had never felt more seen by a soul before. And although I have the gift of sight, I didn’t need it to feel the expanse of his soul. His soul told me everything I needed to know through the transfer of energy. If I am energy and he is energy, then there is no sight involved aside from the one our heart uses by feeling. 

The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched–they must be felt with the heart.

—Helen Keller 

He moved in closer to me, hands still on my heart. I moved my hand to his heart and could have cupped it in my hand for it was beating outside of his chest. I laid my head in place of my hand and listened to the sound of his heart beat, one profound thump after another. I could have stayed there for an eternity listening to the song in his heart, for it told me far more than the words in his mind could. That song told me everything I ever needed to know. 

I looked up into his eyes and although his gaze couldn’t meet mine, he felt the beaming in them. His eyes were kind and innocent without the harsh pictures we have implanted in our minds. They were green with specks of hazel strewn about. He closed his eyes as I kissed each eye lid tenderly. I moved my lips toward his, my heated breath feeling it’s way down his face. An electric shock made its way down my body as our lips embraced in a kiss.

His hands once again cupped my face as he passionately kissed my lips as if he were kissing my soul. Every ounce of energy rose in delight as our kiss lit up our bodies. There was penetration on a soul level where sex was not necessary. I moved my body closer to his as my arms wrapped tightly around his neck. Eyes closed and lips touching, I moved my hands around his skull and felt the ways in which he had blindly felt mine. 

I couldn’t have felt the depth of his love if I weren’t already a being of love. I couldn’t have appreciated the ways he could see me if I wasn’t already a being of love. And I couldn’t have allowed my heart to be felt, if i wasn’t already a being of love. 

When we are love, we recognize love and see no barriers to it. We can fall in love in one day. We can let our deepest, most vulnerable selves be seen and touched by another. And we can give up our search for love because we are love. And the love we are will undoubtedly attract that same love in another.

I promise you that sight will be secondary, because all you will care about is how your soul feels when you are with them. All you will know is how your heart leaps and skips a beat in their presence. And the messy road that got you here will fade into the dust of your half-lived life. Your heart will glide off into the sunset, no longer worried about the destination, but entranced only by the journey.

Life Outside the Pages

 

books-of-2015-edited10.26.15

This stack represents all of the books that have guided me along my journey of recent past; one served as my Bible, many served as inspiration, and while I didn’t finish some, they spoke to me as much as I was ready to be spoken to.

I offer this list of chosen titles in hopes that they provide the same light out of darkness in your life. I pray the words soften your weary heart. Although many of these books changed my life, at a certain point, I had to leave the comfort these pages offered and find my own sense of solace. It was time to face my life, the life that these books helped give so much meaning to.

My temptation was to hide from life between these pages. I wanted to keep reading, to keep learning, and to keep discovering; yet I knew until I learned the lessons that these books offered me, reading would begin to be a great disservice. What I learned in the pages of my own life is we must relive our lessons multiple times (even if they seem to already resonate in our hearts). So, I set down my security blanket and put my heart back on the line.

I began to experience the very feelings I try to avoid through knowledge gathering or my busy schedule or with food. A soulmate returned to my life (much like Broken Open foreshadowed months prior). This blessing of a human reopened the wounds that I so carefully kept shut—wounds I was afraid to shed light on, afraid of how facing them might feel.

Not only did I begin to feel the depth of longing, despair, grief and sadness that buried itself in the walls of my heart, but I was able to feel what possibilities lingered in soul-level connection, passion and desire. When the light of day was revealed after the passion of night subsided, I was left raw, open and wounded; I was ready to do the healing I was once afraid to tackle.

When I realized I still had many lessons to learn, the discovery hit me like an unexpected wave. I wanted to crawl back inside the safe walls of comfort with this person instead of face the loneliness and depths of my broken heart.

The blessings of opening my heart to new experiences (albeit with a familiar soul) were many, but the most poignant lesson was certainly to love myself first: love myself enough to heal my shattered heart and pick up all the pieces from my failed relationship and the pieces from my latest love affair.

I turned back to the pages, but this time I was writing the story and the subject was me. I often turned to the pages of my favorite books to glean inspirational quotes from and to tie my experiences back to what I read. The revelations that followed allowed me to put the pieces together one by one. Each ah-ha moment lead to the next ah-ha moment.

I stumbled repeatedly while living my story out in real time, but I always returned to pen and paper. It’s where I created the glue for my life. It’s where I reset my intentions and reflected on failed attempts and lessons yet to be learned.

journals-of-2015-edited

When I was tempted to pick up where I left off in a book or pick up a new book, I stopped and deciphered if this book would serve as an enlightenment or a distraction. At this point in my life, I was still learning to act valiantly and courageously on that which I had already learned. I vowed to set my booklists aside only to revert to inspirational quotes and passages when I needed a loving reminder to live out what I read (whether it be from someone else’s book or my own journal pages).

Sometimes it helps to not only know where you’re going but to know where you’ve been. Take this opportunity to pat yourself on the back with a job well done, to recognize how far you’ve come, and to know you’re doing the best you can in that moment.

While the pages of my book are still being played out (and will always be playing out), I am nearing the final chapter of my current journey—one that will hopefully see the shelves of a bookstore one day. If my story can one day provide the words of wisdom that serve as inspiration to a lost or grieving soul, then I will have given more purpose to my story than I could ever dream of.

Until that day comes, I am still living many lessons and putting certain lessons to work. The universe has continuously tested me, and I feel I am ready to begin the final test of this journey of self love—the journey of my patchwork heart. And one day, when I feel i can wholeheartedly resume reading, I will begin to mindfully pick up whatever book speaks to me most at the time.

What I know for sure: there is no shame in putting a book down if your heart is not ready to consume the message. I have set books aside for years, only to pick them up again with an astonishing smack in the face. It is then that I know I am open to the gift revealed in each page. I have also reread books that spoke to me on an entirely new level based on where I am in my journey of self-discovery. That’s the beauty of books, knowledge and lessons—they will always be waiting for the moment you are ready.

My booklist is ever-growing and that will never change. But what has evolved is my self-awareness to live more than read and to experience more than write. I urge you to keep on living that beautifully scarred life you were given.

Books pictured (and un-pictured):

  1. Best Thing Ever by Sky Blossoms
  2. The Gifts of Imperfection by Brené Brown
  3. Women, Food and God by Geneen Roth
  4. The Courage to be Yourself by Sue Patton Thoele
  5. The Spiritual Dimension of the Enneagram by Sandra Maitri
  6. Cast in God’s Image: Discover Your Personality Type Using the Enneagram and Kabbalah by Rabbi Howard A. Addison
  7. Peace Is Every Step by Thich Nhat Hanh
  8. There’s a Spiritual Solution to Every Problem by Wayne W. Dyer
  9. Broken Open by Elizabeth Lesser (my personal bible after heartbreak)
  10. Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert (everyone, and I mean EVERYONE, should read this book)
  11. Anatomy of the Spirit by Caroline Myss, PH. D.

Update: This post was written in October 2015. As 2016 approaches, stay tuned for my new booklist as I step into living my new, spiritually-charged life journey.

Dead Poets Society

We don’t read and write poetry because it’s cute. We read and write poetry because we are members of the human race. And the human race is filled with passion. And medicine, law, business, engineering, these are noble pursuits and necessary to sustain life. But poetry, beauty, romance, love, these are what we stay alive for.

—John Keating, Dead Poets Society

And the Time Came

rose

“And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.”

—Anaïs Nin

This is my favorite quote in the entire world which is a bold statement because I collect quotes by the bucketload.

Anaïs Nin’s words spoke to me deeply at the beginning of this year. Now that 2015 is coming to an end, I’ve blossomed in unexpected yet beautiful ways. But to say that this is the end of my journey to self discovery is far from the case.

In my mind, life is truly beginning because I have learned to embrace all of life and live wholeheartedly. It is as if the fearful weight I carried around kept me from really seeing the beauty in everything the world has to offer.

I love unconditionally, laugh uncontrollably and feel negative and positive emotions without hesitation. I believe life is meant to be lived with an open heart and all that comes with this state of being.

Being in touch with my true self has allowed me to see the potential of all that is possible. 2016 will be an experiment in manifesting the intuitions that 2015 unleashed. I will be sharing my experience on my blog in hopes of inspiring you to blossom.

The Truth Within

My recent awakening has led me to return to the essence that was within me all along. Today I had a stream of consciousness in writing and God asked me, What do Buddha, Moses and Jesus (to name a few) all have in common? He answered, “I have sent them all divine consciousness in order to heal the world.”

I just finished listening to the preview of Dr. Jean Houston’s The Keys to Unlocking Your Quantum Power. Her program is very much in alignment with what I am already doing, yet it goes one step further to completely shed old ways of inhabiting and relating and thinking to step into the feeling of limitlessness—an effect I have started to experience. I was about to go to yoga class when my intuition whispered, “do not go. Slow down and relax.” And in that moment, I felt compelled to check my email, which led me to Dr. Houston’s seminar (which had fallen off my radar).

The timing was perfect (as is everything that is meant to be), so I sat down to listen to this magnificent woman talk about everything I need to learn in order to step into this next phase of my life with complete faith. Yet another intuitive whisper told me to reach out to my Reiki master, Hope, via email; this email search didn’t lead me to her email thread. Instead, it led me to answers of the deep questions I’ve been searching for.

The term Christ Consciousness has entered my mind recently, and with Christmas around the corner, Jesus has been on my mind relentlessly, forcing me to explore my feelings on this rather controversial figure. What appeared in my search was my dear friend Forest’s follow-up email after our 5-hour discussion on universal and spiritual principles (thank you, Forest). I was reminded of a teaching he shared with me on spiritual truth that cleared up any religious ambiguity in my mind:

The finger pointing to the moon is not the moon.

-Buddhist saying

I pondered the meaning behind this principle. No one religion is the only truth, so someone pointing at their religion as “the way” cannot claim any concrete truth, because there is no one way to God (the moon). Once you open up to the possibilities of what lingers beyond your religious beliefs and explore what lies beyond what you were taught to be true, your understanding becomes one of infinite possibility. The only truth is the one that inhabits your own soul.

“There is only one absolute Truth, and all other truths emanate from it. When you find that Truth, your actions will be in alignment with it. Human action can reflect that Truth, or it can reflect illusion. Can the Truth be put into words? Yes, but the words are of course, not it. They only point to it. The Truth is inseparable from who you are. Yes, you ARE the Truth. If you look for it elsewhere, you will be deceived every time. The very Being that you are is Truth. Jesus tried to convey that when he said, “I am the way and the truth and the life.” These words uttered by Jesus are one of the most powerful and direct pointers to the Truth, if understood correctly. If misinterpreted, however, they become a great obstacle.”

“Jesus speaks of the innermost I Am, the essence of identity of every man and woman, every life-form in fact. He speaks of the life that you are. Some Christian mystics have called it the Christ within; Buddhists call it your Buddha nature; for Hindus, it is Atman, the in-dwelling God. When you are in touch with that dimension of yourself — and being in touch with it is your natural state, not some miraculous achievement — all your actions and relationships will reflect the oneness with all life that you sense deep within. This is love. Laws, commandments, rules and regulations are necessary for those who are cut off from who they are, the Truth within. They prevent the worse excesses of the ego, and often they don’t even do that.”

“Love and do what you will,” said St. Augustine. Words cannot get much closer to the truth than that.”

-Eckhart Tolle, A New Earth

What I needed to do all along was return to who I am, not who anyone else wanted me to be. I remember this feeling, the feeling of absolute, unwavering faith. The person I am when I surrender is beautiful — it’s who I am deep down, who I have always been. In this place where love dwells, I feel infinite and all is well. I breathe in Light in everything I do and exhale gratitude and love for myself, for God, for others and for the precious life we are given in each breath.

It is no coincidence that Christmas is around the corner. This holiday evokes so much passion and love inside me, and I am called back to that place where all is well in my heart. I do not have to suppress any part of me; I can simply let every bit of that love out into the vastness of the Universe (and clearly, it’s being returned to me). Now that I am so open to the world beyond my Catholic background, and I have studied Judaism and Buddhism and Hinduism, I can come to this place of knowing, the place that I couldn’t arrive at until I looked outside myself, outside my upbringing and outside my own Ego (and it’s need to be right and have one religious truth to grasp).

As I have let God and His love work it’s way through my whole being, I have felt no need to have one, solitary truth outside of the one in my own heart. No doctrine can trump what I feel in my heart; my spiritual connection is infinite and doctrine is worldly with limitations, rules and ideas of how one should inhabit the earth.

When I found the article on absolute truth, I had a revelation that revealed the truth I have searched for my entire life — that there is no one way to God. I truly am a seeker of light and wisdom and wherever I find that sense of awakening and consciousness is just fine. All I needed to understand is that the answers lie within my heart; I am on my own journey to enlightenment, via whichever path I take.

I will always go back to my Grandpa’s piece of wisdom, his truth-bomb, his quip: God cannot be so concerned about your religious affiliation as He is about your faith. Thank you, Grandpa.

I am truly inspired by the divine miracle of Christmas, a time when I feel most alive in this world. This Christmas is my homecoming; for years I wasn’t able to fully embody this miracle in my own expression. I suppressed how I felt and questioned the magic that has always lingered in my heart and is always brought to the forefront this time of year. I couldn’t help but cry on Christmas eve, two years in a row, for this very reason.

I knew this Christmas would be a pivotal step in my journey, as it arrives on the cusp of my transformation, when I awake to the truth in my heart and live the life I was always meant to live. The way Eckhart Tolle describes Christmas hit me in the center of my heart:

“The true meaning of Christmas is that the very Being that you are is the Truth. This is what Jesus meant when he said, “I am the way and the truth and the life.”

-Eckhart Tolle

When put this way, Christmas is the miracle of who I am at the core; it is creating an awakening of my spirit. It is the birth of this new phase in my life, a phase that allows me to live with the expansiveness I feel in my heart and the potential I feel is possible with deep faith.

This year is wrapping up in the most beautiful of ways. The facade of the woman I was unraveling into the past few years has been shed and I have been lifted into a new phase—one where I can confidently say everything happened for a reason. God simply needed to bring me back to myself, by showing me the divine love in my own heart.

A New Kind of Love

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I cannot quite believe that 2015 is nearing an end. If Christmas was not right around the corner, you could say I would be fooled. But, if I go by my feeling, I can say without a shadow of doubt that the year is coming to a beautiful close. What started out as the hardest year of my life, has blossomed in a way that has left me in constant awe of what is possible.

Today is the new Moon, a day that now carries significant meaning in my life. The number 11 is a special gateway into magical happenings and new energy, and it’s no coincidence that it always falls around the new Moon. New Moons represent new beginnings, a fresh start each month, and paired with 11 (which also represents new beginnings) brings an extra special time to not only reflect on how far I’ve come, but where I want to go. I take the time to notice how I feel, if I am centered and prepared to step into the fresh month with loving intentions.

As I ponder how I feel in this moment, I notice my heart is starting to expand in a way it never has before. I feel all kinds of amazing energy and the vastness in this space is truly awe-inspiring. God’s love just knocks me over with such power and I’m so grateful to be in this place. Somehow, along the way, I pushed past the last few barriers I was facing, and I allowed all of this energy to rush in, ready to move me forward into the life I feel is imminent.

I didn’t know it was possible to be this happy, accepting and open to life exactly as it is. I didn’t know it was possible to love this much and to allow gratitude to permeate all aspects of my life. I don’t know what I did to deserve the best life of my life, although I do know I put in the work; I made mistakes and I learned to really love myself (and others by proxy) just as I am. I am far from perfect, but I am perfect in all the ways God has blessed me. If I can spend the rest of my life feeling this expansive and loving while spreading my light and love, then I will have truly come here for the right reasons.

I believe if you put in the work with endless determination, practice undying faith and keep your heart directed toward love, the path leads you to places unforeseen, full of wonder, beauty and light. I am still the same person when I look in the mirror, but the soul looking back at me is shining in all its splendor. The dull, lifeless person that once stood in the mirror, unrecognizable, has vanished.

The light I have gathered in my being will prevent me from ever looking at the person I see in the mirror without responding with an assured I love you. You are whole. You are beautiful. If I could have lunch with the me I was last January, this is what I would say:

It gets better. Yes, it sucks right now and your world may seem as if it has fallen apart; it may feel as though the journey forward is impossible. Do not fear the light inside of you. If you dig deep and sit patiently with every feeling in your weary heart, I promise it gets better. It gets so much better.

There is a place inside you that no one can take, that no person can fully extinguish. They may try to squander your light, but your soul knows who you are and it knows the way. This place still holds a vast expanse of potential to love. Simply, yet boldly, set your fears aside; it’s what got you in this messy predicament and it’s what will keep you from finding the escape route, too.

Choose the path to love. Make the impossible choice, the road less traveled. Tip toe if you must, but take the step. You will find if you enlist your curious heart that you have the capacity to love and live like never before.

Look back only to learn from your mistakes, not to dwell in your misery. You won’t find what you’re looking for if you can’t see the blessing in the present moment. Determine why you took each misstep on the way toward your fear-ridden, downward spiral.

God intends to teach us lessons, and if we look at our past, we will see He simply needed us to choose love. We have to choose love every single time.

Take a chance to live fully, to love wholeheartedly and to travel to the depths of your soul. Your essence is the key to who you are; not who you thought you wanted to be, or who you were trying to be or even who someone else wanted you to be. Who were you before you tried to please others by fitting your heart into a square peg? You aren’t a square; you are an infinite heart. You don’t need to try to fit in when you’re meant to fly.

Stand up. Reach out. Laugh until you cry. Dance it out. Travel to the corners of the Earth if you must. Sit with a friend who reminds you of who you truly are. Sit with yourself in quiet solitude. You will find answers in the silence. Pray, a lot. Get to know yourself, again. Discover how brave you can be if you know falling may happen, because you will learn how to rise. Explore the weightlessness that comes out of your expansive soul. Leap and see how far your heart will take you.

Then, darling, soar with the wings you will grow. Don’t look back, and don’t look forward. Find the peace in this moment. Feel the love radiating from your heart. Send gratitude for the beautiful soul that your body inhabits. And know you can be who you always wanted to be.

You are safe. You are loved.

This is what I would tell my old self. The me today is fearless, not in a way that I am certain of everything in my life, but I am certain my faith will see me through. Maybe that is why we fall in the first place, so we can learn to fly.

Open Heart Series #090715

Souls Intertwined

Heart exploding,
with each beat it grows.
I find my way to you,
path twisted yet true.
I find my North in you,
though my journey not complete.
Stars shooting, wished upon,
manifesting in the moon’s eclipse.
How do you feel familiar,
could you be my twin soul,
cut from the same cloth?

—Karilyn Owens

When we least expect it

When we least expect it, life sets us a challenge to test our courage and willingness to change; In such a moment, there is no point in pretending that nothing has happened or in saying that we are not yet ready. The challenge will not wait. Life does not look back.

—Paul Coelho
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