Saturday, June 18, 2011

Feeling the love

It’s an overcast day on a Mexican beach. The breeze that’s blowing steady and strong has tempered the sticky humidity that has hung in the air. Marc Anthony and latin dance beats are pumping softly through the hotel speakers, and I can smell the ocean as I watch the waves rolling from my perch on the hotel patio. That I am here bearing witness to all of this is a manifestation of love. That my heart and mind are largely back at home despite my physical presence in this place is a manifestation of love as well.

One of my oldest and closest friends got married yesterday in a small, intimate ceremony on a private island in paradise. It was a beautiful affair. She was a beautiful bride. I was a constant observer of the intricacies of love that were all around us at every moment. Here we are, celebrating the love of a couple who have chosen to formalize their commitment to one another in this way. I remember meeting him in the early stages of their relationship, coincidentally being in town the weekend they moved in together. I was there when they got engaged, and now I have been there to see them exchange their vows. I am so happy and full of love for them.

As with all meaningful experiences in life, this prompts major reflection for me. In this case, I find myself reflecting on the bride and groom’s love, as well as the love of the others here with us. In this small mix are couples who have lived decades by one another’s sides, some doing so as travelers walking a parallel path, others so in sync and intertwined that their two paths have merged seamlessly into one. There are those still searching for romantic love and companionship, and those who seem content to experience love in others ways and forms, preferring to walk their path solo. There is my ex-husband and I, both in attendance for this experience, and to experience each other on a new and different level than we’ve ever known before- real friends. While that is happening, I am constantly thinking of the man who, though relatively new to my life in terms of time spent, feels as if he has been there forever and knows me better than anyone I’ve ever known. He is the man who holds the key to my heart and has given me such intense and extensive lessons on love since walking into my life.

So here is what I've come to with all this thinking, feeling, reflecting: Love moves. Love grows. Love ebbs. Love flows. It is so dynamic, so all-pervading, so constant. Love cannot be pigeon-holed or tied down. Love of one form or for one person is not mutually exclusive from any other. Love is experienced differently by everyone, we interpret and express it differently, and the key, I am coming to understand, is finding someone who loves the same way that you do. While the language of love may be universal, the more subtle nuances are not. We perceive and understand love in unique and varied ways. Accordingly, if you happen to be in the company of someone who’s perception differs from your own, it can be challenging to sustain and nourish that love for long. But when you find someone who speaks the same love language that you do, it is magic. It is coming home. It is salvation. It is validation. It is life.

I am grateful for all the love I have known, all the ways that I have been privileged to experience its life-affirming, awe-inspiring magnificence. I am grateful for the love I have witnessed between others, for the love I have exchanged firsthand, and most acutely and profoundly, I am so beyond grateful for the love that is in my life at this very moment. This love is allowing me to see the world through clear, open eyes, to have new appreciation for people and relationships I thought I previously understood, and to feel so safe, so happy and so full. As I honor this love, I do so by wishing that each and every one of us has the opportunity to give and receive a love so powerful and so pure because it truly is what makes life worth living. Infinite blessings.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Manifesting my dreams

Manifest: 1) to make clear or evident to the eye or the understanding; show plainly. 2) to prove; put beyond doubt or question.

We are all tremendously powerful beings, constantly making manifest dreams, ideas and intentions if we choose to apply our power and our consciousness to do so. Some of us are more comfortable with this notion than others. Sometimes our own power is the very thing that scares us most. I've experienced both, and thanks to a series of incredible occurrences that have recently graced my life, I am now sitting squarely in the camp that believes we are absolutely capable of making manifest all of our heart's purest desires.

I'd been in a funk lately. There was just no denying it, and at moments it felt like there was no getting around it. I accepted that it was simply something I had to go through, not get around. I did all I could to constantly replace negative thought patterns and frustrations with affirmations of faith and the belief that all happens when it should, as it should for good reasons that just may not be immediately clear. Whenever there is a shadow obscuring any situation or circumstance, it is easy to get drawn into darkness. But the light always shines through. Our darkest moments inevitably will be illuminated if we believe it will be so, if we manifest that light into our lives. This blog in its entirety is in essence a testament to that, sharing stories from my own life experience that speak of light winning out over dark, hope over fear, healing over pain. Recently, I have once again been blessed to have sunshine come bursting through the clouds, and this time, it was threefold.

I knew I needed and wanted a shift in my work life. I felt strongly compelled to take certain aspects of my yoga practice deeper. I had been met with several opportunities to really take a hard look at my feelings on the matter of love, romance and family. Yet I never imagined that the "answers" to all these "questions" would suddenly become manifest in the span of one short week! That is really and truly how it happened. After countless moments of prayer and meditation, setting intentions to support my dreams and hopes, everything clicked into place as if by magic. And you know what? I believe it is magic. Not magic of the mystical sort, but magic of the inspiring if inexplicable sort. Watching your heart's desires become manifest truly does feel like magic, and the greatest part is that we are all able to play the role of the magician, or the Master Manifester, as some of my friends and I like to call it.

For me, what manifested was the reconnection with an old friend at precisely the right time so that he and I can collaborate on a musical venture that will hopefully give a platform to my deep love of chanting as a spiritual practice and his incredible talents as a musician. Two days later, I had a quintessential "ah-hah" moment and woke up with the name "Ocean Om" in my head. Within hours, the domain name was purchased, feelers went out to get a logo and Web site together, and bam! I am now owner/operator/president/CE everything of Ocean Om LLC, focusing on bringing standup paddle board yoga to Fort Lauderdale and connecting the yoga and SUP communities in our area. Then finally, though not at all least substantially, love, and I mean deep, intense, soul-stirring, made for each other kind of love, made itself known in my life once again, though in a way I have never quite known and certainly never felt. My life has literally transformed, and though I have been in a state of perpetual motion since this all began, and am thus exhausted at times, I am so full of love and light that I can scarcely contain it. The Universe continues to deliver blessing after blessing, opportunity after opportunity, and I trust that it is doing so because that is what I have manifested.

I don't believe myself to be so special, uniquely capable or privileged that I should have any advantage that anyone else wouldn't have where all of this is concerned. We all have it in us. We can all manifest whatever it is we are seeking in our lives. So in my enthusiasm and from a place of pure love, I encourage you to reflect, really, truly and deeply reflect on what it is you would like to make manifest. Meditate on it. Sit with it. Ask for it and then act as if it is already yours. So it shall be.