We all have within us a point of peace that when reached everything within our bodies finds balance and renewed well-being. It is where our emotional and physical systems find their set-point and function optimally and where everything seems to sigh in relief. My spot just happens to be the ocean. Something within the push and pull of the sea reconnects me to the heartbeat of the Mother. Relaxation and anticipation combine to make this experience one of preparation for rebirth and like any good vacation, we come back renewed. Getting out of our routine and finding a slower pace, fresh air and sunshine is a wonderful recipe for well-being.
But a vacation is only as good as the attitude and point of view I take with me. This vacation was different. Often in preparing for a trip away from home in the past, anxiety plagued me for the 2 days before and for 2-3 days into the trip. Everything had to be perfect because these types of opportunities didn’t not often present themselves. Planning, preparing and leaving things done at home took away a lot of the pleasure for me. My girls just wanted to be kids, go exploring, have fun and eat good food. I was wrapped up in the orchestration of everything around us lest something go awry and ruin it for the entire family. I was accused of being too fearful and watchful. It caused anxiety for everyone and they were grown and gone before I figured it out. For the last few years I longed for their presence as I had new experiences. It would have given me an opportunity to show them I had it in me. Though they are grown, I know I am forging a path for them even if they are not around when explore this awesome life.
I finally feel free to be me, to lighten up, be present and enjoy the journey.
A trusted friend and spiritual advisor shared with me once that he got hung up on “judging past experiences with current information”. I believe that is where most of us leave our spirit…in the past. We go back and revisit those things that didn’t turn out like we think they should have, with the idea that if we figure it out now it will somehow make it better. We beat ourselves up for not knowing what we didn’t know. And because we keep living in the past, we miss the experience of the moment. Those unhealed emotional wounds that I carried into every moment shut off my ability to be present for myself – much less anyone else. I have spent many years doing the things I felt would help me connect with my own spirit. Twelve step programs, therapy, yoga, meditation, writing, and just plain having the courage to live this life I have been given. I saw evidence of my healing at every turn.
That I know is what was different about this vacation – I was healed. I didn’t long for anything different. I spent myself on the experience of the moment, loving the man that I was with, and feeling the feelings that were present for me – now. No wounds were opened, no feelings hurt, and though I hope my girls have experiences like this one day, I didn’t long to have them there so I could have fun. I showed up full out, gave nature, my body, my husband and everyone I came in contact with, my full attention. I delighted in everything I could take in – every texture, smell, taste, smile, and feeling. My mind was quiet, my body nourished by the excellent food, the sun, the clean air and the love of my wonderful partner. I didn’t do much of anything else…that was all I seemed to need.
I am almost 59 years old and I finally know what it is like to be fully present. I just didn’t figure it out until I got back. I pray that each of my clients and those whose lives I have the honor of touching, find this freedom as well. I know that my life is devoted to giving this back to others…it is what sustains me.
What “present” will you give yourself today?