happiness

Grow from what we go through

Last night before bed, after I’d written my blog, I read something that put words to what I was trying to express yesterday. I was trying to say that embracing the shadows, the shadow part of myself, my life, of other people, and the world in general is imperative not just for healing but for peace.

Marianne Williamson says We are acting out our anger and our fear because we are not facing the depth of our pain…. yet we seem to have great resistance to looking at our lives, and our world, with emotional honesty. And I think we are avoiding more than pain. We are avoiding the sense of hopelessness we think we will feel when confronted by the enormity of the forces that obstruct us. Yet, in fact, it’s when we face the darkness squarely in the eye – in ourselves and in the world – that we begin at last to see the light. And that is the alchemy of personal transformation. In the midst of the deepest, darkest night, when we feel most humbled by life, the faint shadow of our wings begins to appear. Only when we have faced the limits of what we can do, does it begin to dawn on us the limitlessness of what God can do. It is the depth of the darkness now confronting our world that will reveal to us the magic of who we truly are. We are spirit, and thus we are more than the world. When we remember that the world will bow to our remembrance… 

These are times that challenge our spiritual assumptions, as the power of darkness seems to be taunting us, demanding, “So where’s all this love you believe in now?” The answer is that love is inside us, just waiting to be unleashed. The darkness is an invitation to light, calling forth the spirit in all of us. … that’s the spiritual meaning of a situation: not what happens to us, but what we do with what happens to us and who we decide to become because of what happens to us. The only real failure is the failure to grow from what we go through.  (The Gift of Change) 

That’s why I feel like it’s time to embrace my shadow side, to not be afraid of the darkness, to accept what happened and to know that it is part of my spiritual growth. But that growth can only come from embracing the darkness as much as I embrace the light.

And in a “life still has happiness moments” moment, I was blessed to spend the day with my boy. Our schedules are so crazy lately I barely see him and I was so grateful he set aside a whole day just for me. It feels like not so long ago I was registering him for kindergarten, and now he’s off to post secondary in the blink of an eye. And the girl? Well, she spent the afternoon braving the freezing cold of the creek with her cousin – also an important moment of happiness.

Standard
happiness

Stampede breakfast 2019

Out community hall had its annual stampede breakfast this morning. It was the third year the kids and I helped (since I’m a board member) and it is more enjoyable every year.

This year for the first time we had a dunk tank to raise money for the hall and it was a huge success. Some very good sports volunteered to be dunked in less than ideal weather which was greatly appreciated.

I love our community. I’m so grateful we are back home.

Standard
happiness

Canada Day 2019

We went to Canmore to watch the Canada Day parade – a tradition we started in 2014 when we were home visiting. It used to be a quiet, small parade and now it seems the word has got out – larger but still a lot of fun.

And the weather was perfect for it.

Then the boy was called into work which ended the rest of the party plans, which was unfortunate, but that’s life with one car when you live in the country.

Happy Canada Day. I love this country, I’m so proud to be a Canadian, and I’m grateful this is where my kids are growing up.

Standard
happiness

Forced family candyland time

The girl insisted we have a family game night. The boy and I reluctantly left our solo quiet time to join her only to discover she’d chosen the one banned game in the house – Candyland. Banned 10 years ago because it’s the most boring game on earth.

Who would have thought that at 14 and 18 they’d still find it fun. Although it’s a totally different kind of game with teenage vocabulary.

Then we moved to the ultimate family favorite – uno – and took turns kicking butt.

I didn’t know I needed that, but I really did. It was fun to be silly and play games with my two favorite people.

Standard
happiness

Change the voice in your head

The last week or so I’ve been feeling really ungrounded and dealing with a lot of unwanted voice chatter – old tapes replaying things in my head. I know it’s in part because of recent issues I’ve been dealing with regarding Mr. X, it brought up a lot of the old crap that I’ve buried or not dealt with. And while I know I need to deal with those old emotions, I find the tapes on endless replay in my head difficult to handle.

I think most of us have some version of this – old things that someone has said to us that we say over and over. They may say it one time, or a few times, but we say it to ourselves millions of times and that causes a lot of damage.

I had my riding lesson today. As I was struggling with transitions, my instructor pointed out that I needed to get rooted and that I had to stop reacting to him jumping around – she said that I was using old reactions to deal with present problems and that wasn’t going to work. She actually stopped me and said it was like I had old tapes playing in my head of how things used to be and that wasn’t going to help me at all in my present situation.

One thing that she said that was really helpful – on my horse and in life- was when things start to go wrong not to get all tense and upset and expect myself to be able to get back  into balance immediately. She said “I don’t care if it takes you one or two times around the circle to get yourself back together, just as long as you don’t let yourself get rattled, you stay present in the moment, and you keep working at it. Let go of that old tape and use the new skills I’ve taught you.” Proof that how we do one thing is how we do everything. I’ve learned new skills riding, and I’ve learned new skills in life. Now the trick is to remember to apply them.

And that was exactly what I needed to hear, on my horse and in my life.

Standard