Tuesday, March 6, 2012

2 Years, 5 Months & 1 Day

"Often when you think you're at the end of something, you're at the beginning of something else."  --Fred Rogers

This will not be easy. For me, certainly; perhaps for some of you, but here goes....This is my last post to the Refrigerator Oracle.

I find it hard to resist adding, for awhile or at least for now, but that is not what I mean. What I mean is that I am done. This blog is done. In some way anyway. Nothing, of course, is ever really done, but it is as done as something can be in this world.

This has been coming for awhile, but I have had a hard time letting go. It has, after all, been 2 years, 5 months, and 1 day in the making. And it has been good. I think it has been good. It has been good for me. It has been great for me. It has been a labor of love for me and a gift of love to me. It has kept me going through some hard times and it has given me a voice in a way I have never had before. It has - in many ways - "made" me a writer.

And now it is time to explore some other ways of being a writer. Some of those are clear to me and others are not, but my guidance is clear on this point.

So I say "Goodbye" and wish you well. Thanks for stopping by. I will miss you.

[BTW....I am still writing - just not as often - over at www.larasimmons.net. You can also find out about writing classes and other projects I am working on. Hope to see you there!]

Monday, March 5, 2012

The Myth of Meditation

"If it weren't for my mind, my meditation would be excellent." --Pema Chodron 

I think when most of us think about meditation we have this idea of a still mind, a quiet body, an idyllic experience. 

The truth, for most of us, is far from this ideal. 

I have had the chance lately to talk to a couple of people about meditation and the basic theme has been "I can't." 

"I can't because my mind won't stay still." 

"I can't because I don't have the time." 

"I can't because I don't know how."

I laugh now when I see a flyer for a "meditation class," despite having taken at least five or six of these myself, and getting a lot out of each one. 

The fact is, no one can teach you how to meditate because meditation is completely different for every person. 

But what it is not - for most of us anyway - is a blissful hour of complete silence and stillness. 

What it is for me is something like this: 

Wake up. Think about all of the things I need to get done today. Start to make a list. Remember my commitment to "meditate first" every morning. Get up and drag my ass to the kitchen. Pour a glass of water. Head into the living room. Queue up my meditation CD (Master Choa Kok Sui chanting OM). Lie down on the couch. (I often meditate lying down, despite learning in at least a couple of my classes that this is "wrong.") Cover myself with blankets and start to breathe deeply. Realize part of my body is sticking out and reorganize my blankets. Take another deep breath. Start to think about all of the things I need to do today. Think about the TV show I watched last night. Wonder if the main character is going to figure out that she has really blown it this time. Realize I am not meditating. Take a drink of water. Rearrange my blanket. Take another deep breath. 

You get the idea. 

This goes on for 45 minutes to an hour - sometimes a lot less - and then I get up and start to make breakfast for the kids. 

Maybe I felt complete bliss and the total love of the Universe and everything in it for a couple of minutes, maybe not. Usually I come away with at least three or four great ideas, many of which never see the light of day, but some that do. 

The thing is it doesn't matter - not in the least - HOW it all goes. Just that it goes. 

Last week I missed a day. By the end of the day I was so grumpy and angry and out of sorts that I sent myself to bed without any supper - to meditate. When I woke up the next morning, I headed for my spot without hesitation.

It doesn't matter WHAT you do or HOW you do it or WHERE or WHEN or even HOW MUCH you do - a good friend of mine does "just" ten minutes a day and finds that even this small practice makes a big difference in her life - it doesn't matter how it goes or even how you feel during your meditation. 

All that matters is THAT you do it. That you sit - preferably every day - and breathe and connect with that part of yourself that knows itself to be One with everything. However that looks for you and however it works for you. 

So don't get caught up in the myth of meditation, when you could be living the reality of its benefits, NOW.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Happy Leap Day!

"Liz Lemon: 'I'm about to do something crazy.'
Her boyfriend Chris: 'You should! Real life is for March.'"
--From the 30 Rock episode "Leap Day"

Happy Leap day ya'll. I'm recovering from the flu (:p) and working hard on a blog entry for Verity Credit Union (click here to view), but I just LOVE the idea of a "leap day" so I wanted to write something about it.

“Leap and the net will appear.” (John Burroughs, American Naturalist and Essayist) has always been one of my favorite quotes. It's what we do all day every day. We wake up, trusting that the earth will still be spinning on its axis. We take a step, trusting that gravity is still the law of our land. We step outside, trusting that the air we breathe will fill our lungs with oxygen and sustain us for another day.

Every day is a leap of faith, but today is an extra special day. An extra day. “A day to do the things you wouldn't ordinarily do. A day to take chances.” (also from the 30 Rock episode “Leap Day”)

The other day I read an article about doing something different every day. Just to shake things up, to knock yourself out of your comfort zone, to take a leap of faith. I love this idea and I am going to try it, starting today. 

I have the idea to do it for a year, but perhaps I'll start with a month and see how it goes. I don't think this is going to be easy for me, but who knows? 

So Happy Leap Day to you! Now go out and TAKE A FLYING LEAP. The net WILL appear! 

[Leap Day Update: My "thing" for the day is to use my left hand instead of my right. For writing, for mousing, for brushing my teeth....whenever I remember for whatever I can. What's yours?]

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

The Misery and Joy of a Staycation

"Misery and joy have the same shape in this world: You may call the rose an open heart or a broken heart." --Rumi 

My kids are off of school this week and my husband is home too, taking some vacation time so we can work around the house.

The week got off to a great start. We were all just so happy and in sync and the first couple of days were full of joy. 

Yesterday afternoon, however, the tide turned. 

My husband reminded me that he did have some work to do this week and it triggered something old and angry inside of me. I was miserable and I could not rest until everyone around me was miserable as well. 

This morning, I succeeded. 

"Where do we go from here?" I found myself wailing inside as I tried to imagine what came next. 

And what I got was similar to this quote from Rumi. "Just do what comes next. What you were going to do anyway. Do it with a heavy heart and it will gradually get lighter." 

Don't let misery stop you in other words. Misery is just another name for joy. And if you step forward in misery, you just might find joy again.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Loving What IS

"The problem, if you love it, is as beautiful as the sunset." --Jiddu Krishnamurti

Tuesday, February 14, 2012


"Love is freedom. To look for it by placing yourself in bondage is to separate yourself from it. For the love of God, no longer seek for union in separation, nor freedom in bondage! As you release, so will you be released. " --A Course in Miracles

Happy Valentine's Day to you all! I L♥VE the idea of L♥VE as freedom, I always have. In the meantime, I show my L♥VE through control. :p What's that about? 

But, as a very wise man once said to me, "We are all doing the very best we can in any given moment." 

So, control was the best I could do at the time and today I am trying to do better. I am trying to release and L♥VE and offer freedom to everyone as a gift of L♥VE. I offer it to you. 

Do not place yourself in bondage to L♥VE, nor anyone else you L♥VE. And, when in doubt offer chocolate

I L♥VE you - have a fabulous V-day!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Shooting Stars

"Thinking with our brains is like shooting blanks now, whereby thinking with our hearts will be like shooting stars." --Lauren G Gorgo in her energy alert from January 10, 2012 

I love getting the latest scoop on what is going on energetically in the world and I love it even more when it affirms my experience or my own intuition. More and more these days I find myself second-guessing what I am thinking in my head. 

For me this is revolutionary. I have been a "thinker" all of my life. Thoughts spinning and churning all day - and sometimes all night - long. Plotting, planning, figuring, designing....It's exhausting! 

And the great news is - I don't have to do it anymore! 

The time for thinking with our heads is over. It's our hearts that are leading the way now and thinking with my heart is so much less work than thinking with my head. A LOT less exhausting, a lot more clear and a lot more full of LOVE and KINDNESS and BLESSINGS and BLISS and all good things than my head ever was. 

It truly does feel like I'm shooting stars!