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Posts Tagged ‘path’

pathway-after-monsoon-john-judin-june-2016If you can see your path laid out in front of YOU 
step by step you know it’s not your path.
Your own path you make with every step you take.
That’s why it’s your path.”
~Joseph Campbell

 

The good news is that while I may not know exactly what turns will get me to where I am going. I do know that thriving can only when I nourish my soul. Only through breathing deeply, moving my body, and being creative can I fuel my essence into being. It takes intense work, but I am up for the holy work that comes with choosing life.

 

I am not sure if I saw myself as a creative before the last few years. In fact, I think I may have seen myself as a wallflower or perhaps even a little insignificant. I surrounded myself with people that were dreamers, artists, musicians, activists, and so much more. While I was a loving soul, a passionate writer, and a giving human being. I wasn’t enough. I wasn’t smart enough, creative enough, or beautiful enough.

 

Looking back, I know that was a bullshit story I told myself.

 

Today I feel much differently. I have found my rhythm. I trust that I am enough. I have a way of staying grounded while soaring. At the same time, my open heart invites others to do the same. I am inspired by humanity even as I struggle with parts of what I see. I show up, I strive to do the next right thing, and I take time to live authentically as a mother, a friend, an activist, and a creative. I embrace the magical world and allow it to guide me with each step.

 

My happy place is anywhere that I am being creative. Over the years I have moved from being ‘just” a writer to becoming a creative in so many different areas of my life. I love to watercolor and to weave, but I also love to play with sand or food or really anything. As an educator, I seek ways to inspire kids and their teachers to simply play. My hope is to empower people to leave their boundaries behind and allow themselves to explore new horizons. None of us need to stay in a box that was often chosen for us.

 

There is nothing self indulgent about navigating the world as I do with an open heart, mind, and spirit. In fact, my entire being has not only the right, but the responsibility to show up fully in my own life. And what I know today is that I can only do this if I listen to my inner voice that so clearly nudges me (ok shoves me) towards creative endeavors.

 

Over the last couple of years, I have been blown away by the many messages that keep showing up while reminding me that I need to do the same thing in every area of my life.

 

  • Working with an incredible rabbi and community that invite me to show authentically.
  • Elle Luna’s book, The Crossroads of Should and Must: Find and Follow Your Passion and amazing podcasts inspired by her book.
  • SARK’s teachings – Susan Ariel Rainbow Kennedy’s mentoring focuses on giving her students tools so they could begin Making More Alive Choices.
  • The following creatives continue to fuel my work including Chase Jarvis, Glennon Doyle, Indie Arie, Jennifer Pastiloff, Brené Brown, Seth Godin, Elizabeth Gilbert, P!NK, Mary Oliver (z’l), Indigo Girls, Katy Perry, Neshama Carlebach, Shoshana Jedwab, Tracy Chapman, too many scholars to mention, and so many more
  • Watching how “This Is Me” unfolded and ultimately touched so many lives in “The Greatest Showman”. As I viewed this scene, tears rolled down my face as I processed my own journey towards finding inner courage and bravery to stand strong as the woman I am. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XLFEvHWD_NE

 

As someone who has been battered and bruised, I literally lost it when I first heard Keala Settle sing:

 

I am brave, I am bruised
I am who I’m meant to be, this is me
Look out ’cause here I come
And I’m marching on to the beat I drum
I’m not scared to be seen
I make no apologies, this is me

 

As a THRIVER, no one would want to see the darkness that I have seen. I am blessed because today I have emerged into the beautiful and strong woman than I am. My writing and my art have become my roar. And I would have never been able to do it without guides and beloveds that have come with me on my journey.

 

Life continually calls to me in new ways. With each word I hear or read, I am carried to somewhere I have never been. I am learning, stretching, and evolving on a daily basis. I am literally moving in directions that I have never seen before.

My path is not obvious. I seem to have to do a lot of weeding along the way. And yet, I am finding the path that was meant just for me.

 

Hineini, Here I am! I am alive; I am thriving; and I have made it to this time!

 

Onward with love, light, & peace,
Chava

 

PS: Thanks for reading what will likely be part of my memoir which at this point is being called, Living Out Loud: A Thriver’s Journey. If you like what you are reading, please take a moment and like it on WordPress or any social media site, AND if you have feedback, I’d love to hear it.

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Polish-Slovakian border - Stephanie Randall

Polish-Slovakian border: Courtesy of Stephanie Randall

Not all those who wander are lost.’*

I wander a lot; I explore the world with every movement and every breath; I seek answers to questions that seem insurmountable, only to find the answer in a prayer or a chant.  On many of my excursions, I am not sure where I am going or how I will get there. Other times I think I know where I am going only to be end up somewhere completely unexpected.

All I know for certain is that I am on a journey. All of us are. With each step, I am trying to walk gently while being the most authentic that I can be. In those same moments, I am fumbling to understand the world I live in with all the wild landscapes that encompass each step.

While I often feel like I have a choice on how to get from point A to point B, more likely I am guided.  My feet may appear to move as if they have direction, but that is rarely the case. Mostly I look at my life as moments of Lech Lecha-ing; a gentle guide or teacher emerges to make sure I make it to the best possible place.

Sometimes I feel like I am tripping over my own two feet, but what I am actually doing is finding solid ground in the best way I know how. There is no straight and smooth path to take me from where I am; the path is rocky and sometimes quite daunting.

Just when I think I can’t take another step, I remember to breathe. Only once I take a deep breathe do I find that I have what it takes to continue with yet another step. Breathing deeply reminds me to see the beauty that surrounds me wherever I am.

I am alive; I am thriving; I am reaching; I am being exactly who I am. Halleluyah.

*”Not all those who wander are lost.” – probably inspired or written by J. R. R. Tolkien for his poem called “All That is Gold Does Not Glitter” for his fantasy novel The Lord of the Rings.

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Wherever you go, possibilities surround you! By opening both your eyes and your heart, a door will always appear.

Tucson-fav

Each door, path, and journey offers infinite gifts and potential challenges.

My friend Shay Seaborne reminded me of image of Alice in the rabbit hole from Alice in Wonderland. Alice couldn’t see the little door when she was big; only wnen she was reduced could she see it and ultimately go through it too!

We often struggle to see that which is in front of us, yet life is full of openings if only we open our eyes a little wider.  Discovering the doorway takes insight, sometimes from within and sometimes from others.  The key to moving forward is to trust that anywhere you go will lead you towards new experiences and/or opportunities.  There are doors everywhere you go.

“Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?”
“That depends a good deal on where you want to get to.”
“I don’t much care where –”
“Then it doesn’t matter which way you go.”

Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland

Choosing which way is to navigate takes a certain amount of trust.  The bottom-line is that we grow from each and every experience, even the tough ones.

Over the coming weeks or even months, I will use my blog to explore how each step within life’s journeys is synonymous to moving through a doorway towards insight, wisdom, beauty, and opportunities.

May each of us walk gently and honor ourselves completely as we navigate through the many doors of our lives.

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Saying by-Lisa Villa Prosen; Photo-Tre Le

Today on Facebook, I saw this photo posted on My Renewed Mind’s status line.  The moment I saw it, my mind soared.  Life’s journey has not always been easy for me; there has been intense loss, dramatic pain, and deep sadness.  In truth, none of these realities have ever overtaken me for long.  I have always found a way to surpass the challenges.  That doesn’t mean that I haven’t suffered, it means that I have had to do a lot of work in order to become the healthy person that I am.

Many of the challenges that I have faced have been out of my control; I was forced to survive and even thrive in difficult conditions.  An example is when my son was critically sick; I had to spend days, weeks, months, and even years taking care of him in all sorts of settings that were not necessarily of my choosing.  Our children are never meant to suffer, but sometimes they do.  During that time, I had to honor the reality that we were facing and I had travel a path that kept my son alive and yet took away every ounce of freedom I had.  During the years of his illness, I couldn’t write, take walks, or explore the world around me.  The gift is that at the end of his journey, I was able celebrate his life with him.

Each one of us faces challenges in our lives.  Sometimes we can maneuver ourselves through the situations for a while and sometimes we are stuck.  It would be great to have choices, but reality doesn’t always allow it and sometimes it takes a little time to work situations out.  When I was a little girl, I had to grow up before I could leave home and become safe as an adult.  When I have had struggles in my work, I have had to try to work through the scenarios before moving forward.  Working through challenging relationships takes work, as does moving forward when those relationships are over.  Work, friendships, family dynamics are all part of life; honoring yourself in the midst of them is about deciding what makes you soar.  What do you need to thrive as a person?

For me, taking chances and letting my creative soul live is how I can be the happiest person, how I can be free.  Yes, I am part of a beautiful family as well as loving friends.   But in order for me to thrive with those I love, I must thrive within my own being.  Writing is how this becomes possible.

In this moment, boxes surround me.  I have been pushing hard since making a decision to leave Washington DC for Tucson a little more than a month ago.  And I have missed taking time to write in my own space and at a moment that writing calls to me.  I am doing taking the time now.

Writing,

the song of my heart;

the feeling of my soul;

the meaning of my mind;

Is what makes me One.

These words were written when I was a young girl going through hell that none of us should ever know.  And today they touch me as much today as they did when I wrote them at 14 years old.  These words encompass the essence of my being.

Over the coming weeks, I will be continuing a 12 part series called “Seeking My Own Path to Simchah (Happiness): My Own Personal Happiness Project” This was inspired by book The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin.  This series will explore the ways I have learned and continue to evolve as someone who seeks simchah, happiness.  The first two installments that were started before I moved to the southwest can be found:

May each of us move forward as individuals who strive to find our best selves; may we be free to explore our dreams and then follow our own dereckh, path to our own personal simchah, happiness.

With blessings  & light,

Chava

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