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Friday, August 30, 2013

NOT AS CLEVER AS WE THINK


    I believe there is something in many of us that thinks we can defy the odds, that the rules don't apply to us, and that we can somehow bypass logic, or fate. We live on the edge and on the verge and push the envelope- some of us more than others- but all of us just a bit. Perhaps what we do, or say, or think of, won't count somehow when it isn't our best effort, or not in our best interest... and maybe it doesn't.
     It's not possible for us to be scrupulous in every way all of the time, and it is our imperfection that largely defines us and makes us beautiful. We are beautifully imperfect, and even ridiculous at times, but lovably so. We are lovable even in all of the ways that we deceive ourselves.

I learn to laugh at myself because being human is a journey in imperfection.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

SELF IMPOSED DIFFICULTY


     Much of my difficulty in life is self-imposed. I have my share of challenge, but I add to it and add to it- always one to see how far I can go. I take on more than I have to. I drive myself with urgency and guilt. I am afraid of running out of time so I jam pack it with goals and chores and obligations, and then squeeze in my wants as afterthoughts.    
     I push and push and push, and I don't have to, not at the level I do. I choose to take on massive projects and lifetime dreams, and I choose these things without resting between one and the other. And a part of me feels self-congratulatory and proud- to be so productive and to be so motivated... and part of me feels like a fool.

I can live my dreams in moderation. I needn't take them on all at once.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

BREEZY

     One of the most soothing things I know of is a rustling breeze. Stirring the air and the leaves of trees, it comes, and goes again. And it is precisely because of the fact that it is intermittent and not steady that it is as delightful as it is. A steady wind is a whole other thing.
     I love the softness of a breeze. It is gentle and light and caressing, especially on a late summer day. The sound and the feel of it are pure blissfulness. Thank God for breezes to soften the day.

I love the rustle and stir of late summer breezes.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

THE SHADOW OF LOSS

     My beautiful friend lost her twin sister to cancer last week, and another friend lost a brother, and though the circumstances were different, I lost a sister... many years ago. I believe in a higher purpose for our spiritual selves, and that our energy and light live on no matter what, free from the constrictions of being human and being earthed...
     But the loss of those we love to the place we know not is an ache and a primal sadness. We miss them. We will always miss them. Their lives have left a shadow on our souls.

I believe that there is life beyond life, but I miss the daily interactions with those who have passed to the world beyond.

Monday, August 26, 2013

BUILDING OUR LIVES


     Yesterday morning was full of fog and dewy spider webs. They were visible everywhere. One in particular impressed me, and I stood marveling at it. The web seemed to be floating in mid-air. It's attaching string stretched twenty feet or more on each side, and it was rigged up between a tree on one angle and a fence line on the other. It was a spectacular work of art.   
     All those webs got me thinking about how we construct our lives, and what we attract. Some of us are thick in the grass with dense webs, and others are centered symmetrically in perfect perches. No matter the artistry or position of our webs, they suit us, for wherever we may be in life. And the beauty of them is that they are fleeting by design. They can be crushed by a stiff wind, or a heavy footfall, or a reckless bird, and rebuilt, and repositioned. So though we may begin in the grass, we may rise to the air, and attract higher flying people and ideas.

I am tireless like a spider, and rebuild my life as often as I need to, with diligence, and a sense of artful design.

Friday, August 23, 2013

MILESTONE NUMBER TWO

     What a wonderful week of big events! Today, my children, Sienna and Nick, begin their college career at the University of Virginia. We will drive them down and drop them off, but I refuse to leave until I have helped them make their beds. It seems symbolic to me, to do this small act, to lovingly tuck sheets and spread covers and fluff pillows. I want to make sure before I say goodbye that they have a place to crawl into, or flop onto, where they can retreat and restore and rejuvenate; where they can snooze... or sit and read... or pull the covers up over their heads; where they can snuggle.
     I commend them both on their maturity and their evolution to this point, and I launch them into the free world as capable and responsible young adults with lots of wisdom and lots of naiveté. May their journey be blessed, and their initial college weeks be full of adventure and positive experience!

I release my children with love!

Thursday, August 22, 2013

MILESTONE

     We anticipate something for months, for weeks, sometimes longer, and it seems miles and miles away, but eventually the day arrives... and then it passes, and we are beyond it before we have even had a chance to catch our breath. I want to pause, on this morning, and recognize a milestone in my life.... before it is gone like the wind.
     I am launching myself as a motivational speaker tonight. I have been up in front of people for years, and tried to be motivating in all kinds of ways, but this is the first time that it's official. By grace, I have created a venue, and a program, and a small audience. It's something I've long felt called to do, and I am appropriately nervous in an excited kind of way to be here on this day at long last. I am prepared, such as I can be, and relaxed, as much as that's possible.
     No doubt, there will be surprises. There always are in life. But no matter what happens and how things may turn out, I am grateful for the opportunity, and grateful for the follow-through, and grateful for the willingness to be right here on the cusp of this newness.

I am living my dream.
 
 
Join me if you are local and want to come!
Stress-Free Living: Part One is from 7pm-8:30pm
@ Brown's Chapel, 11300 Baron Cameron Ave, 
Reston, VA 20190 
$30 Admission
 
Check out http://www.nathaliewherrman.com/ for more information.


Wednesday, August 21, 2013

GATHERING


      Everyday is a good day for gathering my wits and my calm about me, for focusing inward and grounding myself with good food and positive thoughts, but today may be especially so, in anticipation of some big happenings coming my way before the week is through. I find it necessary to retreat a bit and be a little extra thoughtful knowing that emotional events are on the horizon and barreling towards me.
     I want to meet them with poise and quiet courage, and in order to do so, I must stop the busyness of living for a while and gather my inner strength.

I make time for solitude and silence today.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

ADVENTURE

     Sometimes I wish I were less driven, that I could be content to enjoy my days without the desire to strive for more. But I am an adventurer and I like to see how far I can go. It's amazing what a bit of self discipline and one-foot-in-front-of-the-other towards a goal can accomplish. 
     Life's possibilities are unchartered territory and I am compelled to explore them. The views and discoveries are exciting and wonderful. So although there are times when I weary of traveling, the truth is that exploration and adventure are what I do.

I am an explorer of possibilities.

Monday, August 19, 2013

TANGLED UP IN FEAR

     I can get tangled up in fear like a fly in a spider web. I feel afraid every which way that I look- afraid of success and afraid of failure, afraid to be noticed and afraid I won't be noticed, afraid of being too good, and afraid of not being good enough. And the accumulation of such oppositional fears is a mess of sticky tangles.
   But the game of "what if" is a desperate way of trying for control that I don't, ultimately, have. So if I want peace and freedom, then I have to remind myself as many times as it takes that I am what I am, and what will be will be, and I can trust myself to always do the best I can. Anything beyond that is a trapping web and I will end up getting stuck.

When I overcomplicate the most basic realities of my life, I suffer with fear, but I have a choice in this. If I keep things simple, I am serene.

Friday, August 16, 2013

THE SPIRAL OF LIFE


     Some environments, people, foods, etc suit us better than others, and that's as it should be. Our inclinations teach us about ourselves, and they have a way of changing over time, as we change. Feeling uncomfortable with something that once pleased us, or someone, demonstrates our growth. And hopefully we grow towards better health and not away from it.
     Life is not stagnant. It is always evolving like a spiral. The thing to consider is whether we are spiraling up or down or out of control, and be willing to make different choices if it's not heading in the direction we want to go.

As I become healthier, I am attracted to healthier things.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

THE POWER OF INTENTION

     When my decisions are dictated by a sense of righteous entitlement, I am asking for a negative experience.The universe does not reward petulance, but grace. So if I want positive outcomes and satisfaction, I must make sure my intention is not overblown and grandiose; that it is rooted in love and curiosity instead of demand.

My attitude and intention determine the result.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

GREAT EXPECTATIONS

     Many times in my life- many more than I can remember- I have done something with the specific intent that it be a "treat." I have booked weekends at the beach, had massages, taken a day off of work, and a myriad of things along these lines, and mostly because of my expectations I suppose, they have turned out to be less than I hoped for... by far. And because of their being expensive, their letting me down has been especially disconcerting. Because I felt that it should have been one thing, and it turned out to be another, I felt upset, angry, and betrayed.
     I don't think the lesson is to stop doing these things, but to stop banking so much certainty in their happening the way I think they should, and let them happen as they happen. If there is something I'm grasping for, I'm bound to find it impossible to attain, but if I simply approach things with an open mind and an open heart, then I am allowing for surprises instead of demanding specific results.

If things don't turn out just the way I want them to, I can forgive myself my expectations, let it go, and move on.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

THE WAY THINGS WORK OUT


     Things have a way of working out. They always do and always have, so I'm not sure why I tend to freak out over possibilities. I get caught up in fear and the projection of failure and hardship, but life is only hard when I make it that way by resisting it. Truthfully, one moment at a time one day at a time, I am the recipient of endless unexpected blessings, even if they may not seem that way at first. Hindsight is twenty-twenty. And if I'm honest, I can see that I have always ended up being blessed in the end.

Even in the face of challenges, I stay the course and keep my faith. I trust in the ultimate goodness of my life.

Friday, August 9, 2013

AS WE ARE


     It is our flaws and our errors and our human vulnerability that make us beautiful. When we acknowledge and accept our limitations with good humor and a sense of grace, then we are good company to be around. But if we pretend to be better than we are; if we pretend to be richer or smarter or more secure, then we are hard to take.
     Let's be easy in our skins and full of forgiveness and love, for ourselves as well as others. Let's learn to enjoy simple pleasures and be honest about who we are, with all of our weakness as well as our glory. Let's stop thinking and believing that we need to be more or less of anything and find a way to get comfortable simply to be as we are.

I am just right and completely whole. I don't have to pretend that I am anything other than I am.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

SWEETER BY CONTRAST


    I find humidity harder to take than heat. Thick air does not inspire energy within me. It makes me lethargic and everything requires greater than usual effort, as if I am marching through deep mud. But it also makes me extra grateful for breezes and thunderstorms and air conditioning.
     And maybe everything we struggle with works like that. Hardship makes ease that much sweeter. So if I consider it that way, then I can find my gratitude... and I can find it everywhere and for everything. If I am suffering, when the suffering has passed, then I will experience the bliss of relief.

Crisp air is more delicious after a patch of humidity than ever. It is the contrast that sweetens the day.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

PEN AND PAPER

     I am still a believer in pen and paper. There is nothing quite like the handwritten word. Something happens- a special kind of thought translation, when I move a pen across a page. What comes out is immediate, honest, and uncensored.
     Technology weakens my language and expression. Texting truncates me- computers auto correct and spell check and erase and perfect. But handwriting exposes the drafting process. It shows the crossed out words and the mood and tone of the writing itself. Changing my online font doesn't have close to the same effect. There is nothing to duplicate the pleasure and value of writing by hand.

No matter how far technology takes us, I will keep my notebooks and continue to write by hand.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

SPEED EATING

     I eat too fast and forget to savor each bite. There is a sensation within me of having to get it in and get it down and clean my plate. I'm all about the purpose of food and too readily unconscious of the pleasure of it.
     I am aware of the flavors in the first bite or two, but after that, not so much. I become almost compulsive. I think I have some fear of there not being enough, especially if I'm hungry, so I have a kind of urgent grasping, gulping desire- to eat my fill. But I rob myself of pleasant sensations this way, and I do it over and over and over and over.

I make a commitment to slow down my food consumption and remember to savor each bite.

Monday, August 5, 2013

WANTING TO BE LIKED BY EVERYONE


     We can't please everyone, and occasionally something happens in life to remind us of that. An unexpected barb comes from "out there" and cuts us and stings. My instinct is to want to patch things up with whoever, to go forth with apologies, and to do whatever it takes to be liked again, and approved of again. And apologies are certainly appropriate when I have done something wrong. But when I have done nothing wrong in particular, then someone's distaste for me is not about me, but about them, and the thing to do is to have compassion, and let it go. I'm sure they have their reasons, as I do, when the shoe is on the other foot.
 
 I can't please everyone, and I am learning to be ok with that, even if it doesn't come naturally.

Friday, August 2, 2013

REAL LOVE

    My parents and so many of my friends' parents got divorced when we were young. And I later got divorced myself. All of which created a sense in me that healthy, happy, and loving couples didn't really exist. I thought that those who stayed together were mostly settling for the familiar rather than truly living love. We focus so much on the negative side of relationships in our culture that drama and nightmare seem almost to be couched as the "norm."
     But the truth is, I think there's actually a fair amount of real love happening in our world, alongside all the sickness and hatred. And I think there are couples who grow old together as best friends, and who share a tenderness and intimacy unsurpassed in any other human relationship. And it's beautiful and hopeful. So here's to all loving couples. May we learn to honor and recognize their great achievement in our ever-increasing material world.

I honor my loving elders and learn from their wisdom. Whether single or in a relationship, I make an effort to grow in love every day that I live.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

SURRENDERING TO TIME

     When I can surrender to the natural cycles of days and seasons and stop wanting to push the river and explode the clock, I feel better; when I trust in time and the flow of things and the expanding and shrinking light. I have a tendency to want to accelerate some things in my life and slow others down. I resist them both ways. My weekends are too short, my time in the car too long. And dinner is not ready fast enough but it is over too soon.
    Everything has its time, takes its time, and fills its time. If I do not accept this simple spiritual truth, then I am pushing against the natural rhythms and cycles of life and I affix myself to stress and opposition.

I appreciate and do not resist the movement of time. I make an effort to experience the feeling of each moment, whether it be rushing or still.