internet service is spotty at best….
Meditated last night to the sound of the waves crashing on the beach below. heaven.
stay tuned… brilliant post forthcoming xx
internet service is spotty at best….
Meditated last night to the sound of the waves crashing on the beach below. heaven.
stay tuned… brilliant post forthcoming xx
I am slipping away for a couple days in the sun in mexico…. yes, I understand the confusion… I live where it’s sunny. However, when you live somewhere sunny… you want it sunniER. It’s a vicious cycle.
I will post something fabulous from there.
breathe in, breathe out…..
I can almost taste the salt on my margarita already. xxB
It’s been a busy day and I am exhausted. Got my sit in and can barely keep my eyes open. Going to leave you with a song that I used to put on repeat to fall asleep to when I was in highschool…. appropriate since it’s black history month. Sweet dreams….. xx
“Could a greater miracle take place than for us to look through each other’s eyes for an instant?” ~thoreau
This weekend I had made an appointment with the phone company to come and fix my line. This was to be the sixth time in two months that they were coming out to my house, and the second time this week. I’m not quite sure what the problem is other than my phone doesn’t work and no one seems to know how to fix it.
After waiting through an entire 8 hour window only to have no one show, I was peeved beyond all peeved-ness when the tech finally showed up on the following day as I was trying to get out of the house for an appointment. He took one look at the four dogs and shook his head “Nuh-uh”…”You’re gonna have to put those dogs away or I’m not coming in” he stated in a demanding tone. ”I don’t know where you expect me to put them” came my testy reply. He volleyed back with even more attitude, “ma’am if you don’t secure your animals, then I am leaving immediately… I’ve got a year left before retirement and I’m not risking getting bit.” “WHERE DO YOU SUGGEST I PUT THEM???” I sassed back. We stood eye to eye, glaring at each other, neither one of us wanting to be the one to back down. The ridiculousness of the situation suddenly slammed me from the side, and I took a deep breath before releasing all of the anger that had so quickly boiled up and over. I took a step back and calmly explained to him that I understood it wasn’t his fault, but that I had waited the entire day before only to have no one show, not even a phone call. I said that I was sorry to take it out on him, but I was just at my wit’s end trying to get something as simple as my phone to work. I saw him visibly soften and in a quiet voice he said “show me where the phone line connects to the house”. A half hour later, as he was leaving, he apologized for his earlier behavior and rolled up his sleeve to show me a four inch long scar, where a dog had bitten him at a work site. I felt terrible, realizing why he had been so adamant that the dogs were put away…. He was scared. The minute I let down my guard, he let down his. I was so touched by our ability to get past our own anger and frustration and put ourselves in the other’s shoes.
I wonder how many moments there are in life where our need to be right blinds and prevents us from seeing the real truth about a situation. The more I sit, the more I realize how much hurt and confusion we carry with us on a daily basis simply because we don’t talk to each other from a place of trying to UNDERSTAND one another. The only possible outcome for most of us is the one in which we win….
If we could only comprehend how much we really lose.
I will never forget the sight of the scar on that man’s arm. I can’t afford to. I’d like it to remain in my memory as a reminder that most wounds are invisible to the naked eye. We all have our own war stories, and when we don’t take the time to step into one another’s shoes, we miss an opportunity to widen our hearts and broaden our minds.
Oh, and my phone line still doesn’t work.
And I really don’t care. xxB
Having had two days this past week that really stunk up the joint, I’ve decided to share with you a list I made a long time ago that helps me whenever I wake up feeling blue… It’s a little list of things that make me really happy, or at the very least, content. I use it when I’m not feeling myself, or if something has happened that I am pretty sure is going to send me in that direction. It’s not a cure, but I find that when I am down, having a sense of direction always helps me to feel like this too shall pass away. If you like this idea feel free to steal mine, or even better, make your own. Would love if you felt like sharing yours. and now, without further ado….
When I wake up I will…..
Smile upon opening my eyes, even if I have to fake it.
Leave my bed unmade all day as a reminder of blissful peace
Make a breakfast for myself of eggs and toast slathered with butter, pancakes and fruit, and anything else greasy, fatty, and completely satisfying.
Walk barefoot outside in pj’s for no apparent reason other than to feel morning on my face(even better if it is raining).
Call two friends.
Thank my lucky stars that I have two friends with whom I trust my life and my soul.
Take a bath and write until the water goes cold or my fingers are too withered and raisiny to write, whichever happens first.
Turn to the door, open it, and choose to face the day.
Drive somewhere in my car. Any destination will do. Turn up the music as loud as will fill my ears, and GO.
Sing out loud with every remainder of my being.
Choose to be strong, brave, honest and bold. Then choose to be courageous enough to admit which one of those frightens me.
Buy an ice cream cone and let it drip and melt anywhere it wishes.
Sit with dusk, listen for the sound of it fading away.
Let the night talk and whatever it says, answer back really loud…. yell if I wish.
Ask the uneasiness in my stomach to come visit in my head where I can look at it, then welcome it into my heart, where I can hold it.
Now hold someone.
Savor a cold beer.
Talk to a companion, one of the elite….
Until the last of the evening slips away, and my sleep awaits
Upon which, I will let it go……
I really had no idea what to write about tonight. I’ve had a day. I hate going to bed saying that I am happy a day is over, but that’s how I feel about today. It just sucked, for lack of a more eloquent expression. From the minute I woke up, I could feel it coming on… one of those days. Some days you can choose it to be a good one all you want, and it just isn’t meant to be. Can’t pinpoint why, although I am guessing eating candy like I was 8 years old all day yesterday probably didn’t help. Sugar hangovers are the worst. The only thing to do was to greet it with open arms and let it be the stinker it was bent on being.
However, I also don’t want to glorify it and let it have it’s own starring role in my post this evening… no no no, that won’t do. So as sat down to write tonight, I thought about what the heck else I could write…. oh google, my old friend. I typed in the word “ME”. And that is how I came upon the above video, which fascinated me to no end. First I thought “good lord, how vain” and then remembered my own little vanity project I’ve got going on here and felt slightly hypocritical and mean. And then, as I begin to really pay attention, I started to think and feel all sorts of things….
I thought about how much time and effort we put into our hair and clothes, and when viewed in this manner… you realize how insignificant and unimportant they seem. They change and flit by like nothing. We are actually held by his face, and mainly, his eyes. And isn’t it interesting how little they change?
It also made me feel sad. Yes, yes, the cliche; “life is short”. But it IS!! This is serious business people. A friend of mine who often administers last rites told me of a 90+ year old man she sat with in his final hours. As she held his hand and prayed with him he turned to her and whispered “It was all just a blink”.
When I sit, everything in my life comes down to one thing. ME. More specifically, MY BREATH. In those moments, I do not care about my clothes, or my hair, or what car I drive, or how much money I make. I do not fear life, I even forget about fearing death. In those moments, I am the most alive I have ever been… because I let go of all that STUFF that in my everyday life gives me a false perception of what living means. Death is described as the “Great Equalizer”. There is no amount of material possessions on this earth that will allow any one of us to avoid our great fateful day, and you certainly can’t take any of it with you…. so why do we live our lives every day trying to prove otherwise? If it will not matter in the end, why do we allow it the power to matter now?
I struggle with this daily.
Every day. A lifetime’s worth seems like a lot. But one day, it will all be just a blink. A montage of snapshots that made up a life….
But it is our life, and lest we forget, we get to choose what we will see…. xxB
My mom has been here all weekend. It’s been wonderful to have her here. I feel lucky that I can say that about my parents. We’ve pretty much covered every foot of my neighborhood… I showed her all my new haunts, introduced her to the worlds best smoothie, and let her mommy me… which was exactly what I needed.
Tomorrow she heads back to Seattle… to my dad, who I know will be very glad to get her back. I will of course, be sad to see her go. There is a different kind of light about this place when she is here, and while the glow will last a little after she leaves, it never really is the same.
Tonight’s post, oddly enough, is about love.
Not so odd, considering it’s Valentines Day(it is 1am as I type this).
But I don’t want to talk about girlfriend and boyfriend love. Relationship love. Marriage love. I don’t even want to talk about family love and friendship love.
I want to talk about the two types of love that aren’t really going to be addressed today, February 14th, 2010.
LOVING PEOPLE YOU EITHER DON’T KNOW OR DON’T LIKE…. OR POSSIBLY HATE.
Now, it’s possible that I am starting to lose it a little bit. I have upped my meditation, I must warn you. I have lengthened my sits, and the number of times a day I am sitting. However, if I am losing it, then I hope to god I don’t ever find it.
Yeah. It’s that good.
There’s a Persian Sufi poet by the name of Hafiz. Little is known about him, but judging by his poetry, the man done lost it thousands of years ago. When I read his work, I want to strip naked and run through a torrential downpour, laughing and singing. It makes me feel like a child again. It makes me feel uninhibited and free.
It makes me think about how much time and effort we put into finding someone to love, when the one being who we will truly spend the rest of our lives with gets left in the cold.
When was the last time you wooed yourself? C’mon, get your mind outta the gutter. I mean it, when have you lavished attention and praise on yourself in the same way you would as with someone that you were interested in? I know it sounds weird, but is it really? Don’t you think that if you expect other people to treat you a certain way, you should be treating yourself that way first? Why is this so hard? Why are words like selfish, and self indulgent used to describe things that really are just self loving? Hafiz says:
So that your own heart will grow
So that God will think “ahhhhhh I got kin in that body. I should start inviting that soul over for coffee and rolls”
Because this is a food that our starving world needs
Because that is the purest sound.
Now onto the subject of loving people you don’t know, or don’t like, or possibly hate. This is the hardest. This is what I struggle with the MOST. I don’t have good advice for you on this, other than to say it must be done. HOW? Maybe that is the purpose of this life, to understand the how. In buddhism, it is taught that each person arrives in our life with a lesson to teach us, and that if we ignore the person and their purpose, we lose out on the opportunity to learn more about ourselves. I like to turn to Hafiz for all matters that make me feel a bit crazy….
The small man builds cages
While the sage
who has to duck his head
when the moon is low,
Keeps dropping keys all night long,
It is easy to love those we want to love, harder to love those who make it difficult, and hardest of all to really, truly love ourselves.
I want to say Happy Valentines Day to all of you, my dear hearts… And to tell you how much faith I have in the courage of each of you, to find yourselves beautifully, authentically loveable…. xxB
Yes, I know dear hearts. Two days, no posts. But I be a sittin fool. And today’s post will be all the better for it. Before my sit this evening I went for a ride down the boardwalk and came upon a beautiful soul playing a saxophone solo on the sand at sunset. These are the things I love about living here. As I sat and listened to this man, pouring his heart out into the night air, I thought about how much music moves me. It has carried me and delighted me since I was a child. I have both my parents to thank…My Eastern European father made sure our ears were filled with the classics…Bach, Beethoven, Dvorak, Gershwin. Miles Davis, Duke Ellington, John Coltrane. B.B. King. Ahhhhh B.B King….
My mother rounded it out with music from her youth to the stuff we were listening to… she was the coolest mom around(see The Beige Blur). Her enthusiasm and openness to all forms of music gave us kids permission to do the same. It was not uncommon to be woken on a school day to The Fab Four blasting throughout the house. And if little minds were restless at night, she would sit on the side of our bed and lull us to sleep with this gem:(mom get yer hanky, sorry)
We attended the symphony with my parents regularly from when we were as little as I can remember. It was a big deal, getting dressed up and fancy, eating little cakes and sparkling cider at intermission. Nevermind that for the first several years I never once made it to the final allegro or sonata awake. It was the most decadent pleasure, drifting off into a glorious sleep surrounded by music, beautiful, breathtaking music. My favorite, which affected me even as a young teen to the point of tears…
As we got older, the Kajlich kids took things into their own hands. We regularly swap favorites, and burn cds for our parents who have come to look to us for new material. I love that we all share such a passion for something that has easily changed all of our lives… it is our connective tissue, and the thing most likely to make us run for the literal kind as well. We are bound by the recollection of a piece that moved us in a certain place, at a certain time. Music forces you to be in the moment, to be held happily hostage by a note that can resonate within you and bring forth a multitude of stories and memories. It can also create anew, give understanding, meaning, and depth to something that may be otherwise impossible to understand. It can bridge gaps, language and otherwise. If it does not exist of its own accord around us, we can make it with our voices, our hands, our feet. It is always, everywhere, everything.
I’d like to leave you with two of my all time favorites. One new and one old. The first is a pairing I recently came across about a year ago. They are touring the states this year and if you are lucky enough to live in one of the states they visit, GO. They are Rodrigo y Gabriela, and I will let their music speak for themselves.
And last but not least. A piece that may hold the most emotional significance to me of any that I know. At the start of any trip the Kajlich clan embarked on, my father would fire up the beige blur, camper in tow, van packed to brim… Mom would pass out lollipops and in would go our travel tape. Liszt; Hungarian Rhapsody would blare out the speakers as we pulled out of the drive. We would start furiously conducting; lollipops flying, eyes bright, the open road ahead beckoning with the promise of a great adventure. Whenever I hear this piece of music, I feel like I can take on the world… It helps me to remember that simple truth I so easily accepted as a child… If you’re in it for the long haul, may as well enjoy the ride.
Sure does help if you’ve got great tunes. xx
During tonight’s sit, my mind kept drifting to my sister. We had talked earlier in the day and I was supposed to call her back and I forgot. She lives in London, finishing her final year of vet school and so by the time I remembered it was too late to call.
I have the BEST sister in the whole world(and no, I am not biased). She is beautiful, smart, caring and kind, funny as hell…. and aside from my mother, the only other woman who knows me better than I sometimes know myself. We have not always been such dear friends. There are five years between us and throughout my teens there was little upon which we could find common ground. As we grew older, we got closer, and now I can’t imagine a time when we didn’t practically finish each other’s sentences. There is a term we coined for ourselves and the way that our conversations flow from one topic to another without concluding any thought as we move on to the next. WEBWEAVERS. Newcomers in our lives often stand by wide-eyed and bewildered as they try to follow topics that seemingly arise out of silently communicated thoughts already processed in our giant heads(and I mean giant literally, we have HUGE heads…. not fun to go hat shopping with the Kajlich girls). However, no matter how far we deviate from the original conversation, we always bring it back, loop around, tying up all the dangling bits with a thorough conclusion at the end. It’s quite impressive to witness.
I do not question whether or not my sister loves me. It is impossible not to be clobbered head on by the sheer force of a love that radiates outward and wraps itself around around me like a shawl that will never slip from my shoulders. I carry it with me daily, hourly, by the minute, on the second… and the fact that an entire continent and ocean now separate us has only strengthened the bond that surely has existed before we did. I am so PROUD of Anya. She is an amazing friend and spiritual teacher. She has helped me more than she will ever know, to stick with my practice and continue to look for ways in which to educate myself. She holds me up to the highest level of her expectations(which is annoyingly freakishly high sometimes) not because she has unrealistic ideals for me, but because she KNOWS that I am damn well capable of achieving and surpassing what she sees possible for me.
She is the reason I started this blog. She has her own, about a year of running, along with my mom’s about a year of walks. Anya was the catalyst for all of us, and it has already enriched our lives and our relationships in so many beautiful and fascinating ways.
We do not make a habit of telling the people in our lives how much they mean to us. How many times have you thought something lovely about someone and kept it to yourself? What good does it do inside that head of yours?
Anya. I love you and think you are an incredible, inspiring, bold and brave human being. I am so blessed and lucky to be your big sis. Thank you for teaching me so much about myself. You make me think of this quote by Marianne Williamson:
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us.
We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant,
gorgeous, handsome, talented and fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God.
Your playing small does not serve the world.
There is nothing enlightened about shrinking
so that other people won’t feel insecure around you.
We are all meant to shine, as children do.
We were born to make manifest the glory of God within us.
It is not just in some; it is in everyone.
And, as we let our own light shine, we consciously give
other people permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our fear,
our presence automatically liberates others.
Thanks dear sister, for letting your light shine, and giving me permission to do the same. Love you, xxB