Sunday evening I was a bit restless. I turned on the TV, something I rarely do, hoping to find an interesting program. As I flipped through the channels I became discouraged with what was available. The last thing I landed on was Extreme Makeover Home Edition. Just as I was getting ready to turn the TV off I was struck by the image on the screen. I saw a baby about 6 months old. Not only was he blind but he was actually born without eyes, his arms were contracted unable to fully extend, his hands, legs and feet were malformed.
The story began unfolding of the Hughes family who has lovingly provided this child with every opportunity possible. In order to bond with his son the father put Patrick in front of the piano to share his love of music. Even though Patrick's hands were malformed he found a way to work with the keys and by 3 years of age was playing many songs. Music became the avenue of expression for Patrick and his family. Fast forward to present time to meet Patrick now 19 and a college student who plays the trumpet in the marching band. Yes, marching band. His dad navigates his wheelchair running into the intricate formations as Patrick creates beautiful music.
Extreme Makeover http://abc.go.com/primetime/xtremehome/index?pn=index was building a home for this family that would allow Patrick to have personal space that he could navigate with ease. This young man is all love, joy. He is blessed with a beautiful voice and plays numerous instruments. Throughout the program one person after another shared how much they were inspired by Patrick. The hosts were moved to tears more than once.
When Patrick was interviewed he stated "I am just an average person living my life". Inspiration was not a goal, he was not seeking attention, he was happy to be alive, connecting with his family and friends and being able to play music. To be inspired by him was our choice, to see the wholeness and not the disability.
Autumn has arrived in Sonoma County California. The days are still warm and the evenings very cool. Vineyards have just given their bounty of grapes to be used in wine making. The hill sides all neatly arranged in perfect rows create a majestic painting of red, yellow and gold as the leaves begin to change color. I appreciate the orderliness of the vineyards, it appeals to my nature.
The vines have been tended with love all season. Every shift in weather has been taken into account to produce the very best product after harvest. Yet there is so much that is just left to chance. If the weather shifts before the grapes are picked everything could be lost, if the temperatures have been to hot or to cold the quality will be comprised.
Isn't life the same way? We plan and prepare the very best we know how. We attempt to take into account all of the variables and yet the unexpected happens, illness, death of a loved one or change in a relationship. The unexpected can also be a fabulous year that brings growth in many areas, exhilarating and challenging at the same time.
The seasons of nature and of life have much to teach us if we pause long enough to be with the experience. As the leaves turn in their death cycle they produce amazing beauty , falling away, and preparing the way for the new growth to come in the spring. Is there something in your life that is ready to shift and fall away making room for the new growth to come?
Last weekend I celebrated my birthday with a party at my home! Originally I had made plans to go out of town to the Esalen Retreat Center in Big Sur, California. It would have been wonderful but my motivation was all wrong. I had created a distraction so that I did not have to deal with planning my own party. I find it very easy to celebrate others and very difficult to celebrate myself. Now if someone else had planned the party for me I would not have had as much discomfort.
When I realized I really wanted to be surrounded by friends I cancelled the Esalen retreat and started sending invitations, each person accepting with enthusiasm. The gathering created an intimate and yet festive atmosphere. Good food and lively conversation supported the connection between old friends and discovery of new people.
I had asked Kelly to create a ritual or ceremony to be included during the evening. She offered a beautiful Native American poem setting a heart warming tone. Each guest was then asked to take items from a basket, including beads, feathers and metallic twine. They created an art piece, infused it with their blessings and prayers and attached it to a specially chosen stick. In the end I received a mobile that now gracefully hangs in my living room, a daily reminder of the love that was offered to me on my birthday.If I had gone to Esalen I would have had a wonderful birthday also but very different from the one I experienced by stepping into my own discomfort and asking for exactly what I wanted.
What does it take to bring a dream to reality? Whether the dream is large in proportion and goes far into the future or is smaller and more attainable the steps are the same.
I have had a dream to create my web site for a long while. I was excited and energized about the project. I knew the benefits of having my own site, yet it took much longer than I ever anticipated to bring it to completion. At times the process was energizing and very creative and at times it was filled with frustration and challenges.
It is only in looking back that I see how perfect the process has been. I was not ready even a month ago to bring this project to fruition and believe me I wanted it to be launched. Included in the designing of my site has been a process of self discovery that has been very valuable.
3 keys to realizing the dream...
1. Diligence and Determination...just keep movement happening. The process may be different than what you had envisioned...it just may be much richer. Keep the dream clearly in front of you and stay determined to attain all that you want.
2. Divine timing... This could also be called being "in the flow". Remember inspiration has its own timing. If your find yourself continually blocked then step back and wait awhile to see what arises.
Rather than forcing the process I find that allowing an idea or insight to present itself brings richness to my life and also to whatever I am creating.
3. Have fun...everything worth doing is worth doing with joy and enthusiasm. In my experience when I become to serious the project is harder, takes longer and has an element of drudgery.
Mix up the projects in your day, laugh, move and bring joy into everything you do...you will be rewarded with more peace, ease and creativity.
An Inspired Life can be realized right here right now in this moment...begin the journey to create yours.