Friday, December 28, 2012

Faith in Your Effort

It never ceases to amaze me the power one little phrase or a few words can have. I was listening to Panditji from the Himalayan Institute talk about creating the environment for practice (meditation) and mixed in with many other quickly recited instructions was the comment, "have faith in your effort."

I found myself scrolling back the talk to hear it again. Faith in your effort. Such a powerful thought for me. This little comment gave me a big huge space to see that I try so hard because I actually lack faith in my effort. While Fynn was with his Dad, I had a check list of things to do. I focused on getting homework questions answered correctly, not on faith that my understanding was sufficient and woudl be revealed in my answers. I didn't focus on the intention to offer a small token of my love to people I was shopping for, rather, I was focused on getting gifts for everyone on my list and to keep it within a budget. I didn't focus on relaxing and taking care of myself in this brief relief from parenting, I realized I was focused on being productive and filling time with something with an outcome like a puzzle and fixing the trim in the house.

I have not planned any resolutions for 2013, but I have established a resolve. A resolve to have faith in my effort. To approach the things my heart tells me to do with the resolve to have faith in my effort. I feel happier and more fulfilled, relaxed. I haven't stopped doing, just changed the focus from the outcome to being in the process of doing.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

The ethical life

With the close of the fall and many changes and challenges swirling through my life, this little vata/pitta hybrid (this basically means I tend to multi-task without really getting the job done and burn up people as I go with my fire (ire), has felt the roller coaster ride between continual movement and the intensity to get the job done at all costs. The costs included a lack of personal nutrition, practice and basic self care beyond showering (most days) and only getting exercise with Bella, my steadfast companion; she walks me 2-3 times daily.
Not at all an ethical approach to living.

Having the quiet of home without a child to dictate my schedule and my attention, I have now taken some time to reflect on how it all happened. The root of it was I lost faith. I am not speaking of faith in God or the Universe, or in my mind Divine light within myself. I lost faith that my light was bright enough. I lost sight of it. I stopped believing that I would ultimately navigate my way through it.

The result = fear. Fear of being not enough; not good enough, strong enough or loveable enough. Bottom line, I wanted to feel like I was loved and my life had meaning. Truth was, I wanted that from folks who really were so busy trying to feel they had meaning and they were worthy that we really couldn't connect. Everyone was losing.

I remember so many years ago having that word - Faith - pop into my mind in a meditation and I spent months trying to grasp its meaning. The meaning I understand now, even though sometimes I lose sight of the feeling of faith. Because sometimes, especially when I don't take care of myself, I lose touch with my own fire; my light and I follow my mind into the world of 'what everyone else wants and thinks is most important'.

Real faith is living a life for myself, living in my own heart, 'to thy own self be true.' Not that I forsake responsibilities, because really being a single mom is one of the greatest gifts of all time, no matter how scheduled one can become while doing it. And finding yourself laying under sheets of foam trying to move the 30th sheet into position because you know the value of finding your own fire through climbing and want that for others, and That is what I call living an ethical life.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Puppy Days

A new puppy brings love and cuteness. They need it. I find myself continually moving. When my back is turned, my cuteness, Bella, will find something. Perhaps a slipper, maybe underwear from a hamper, socks or my favourite Yoga tee. She has discovered the wood as a great source for things to chew, loves to jump up on the counters or table, after all, that's where I keep the real good stuff.

The other morning as I made my way through my morning routine, interrupted by trips to retrieve something from her yet again, I realized she was alone in the kitchen. I yelled to Fynn, "Bella's alone in the kitchen," he bounded from his room to save the butter dish.

I crate her during the day and worry the whole time about the unfairness of it. Saturday I decided I would puppy proof a room and leave her there with more space. I came home to a door barricaded with a fallen crash pad, skates and little feathers swirling through the air. Apparently sleeping bag tags are fair game.

I find myself thinking back to my past puppy days. Autumn who chewed anything with snaps, socks and undies too. Sebring just chewed her stuffed toy. Tour, I really cannot remember with Tour. And then I realize, the reason I cannot remember is not because they didn't misbehave and get into trouble, I still have scratches from Luna on the door frame and chewed window sills compliments of Tour. It's because all the years of loving them erased those infractions that seemed so large at the time.

My interventions will continue, and I will try to remember that one day I will not even remember this behaviour that seems so disruptive. But I will remember all the love those big brown eyes are trying to convey. Suppose this is true with humans too.