The Bliss Blog

In a hospital bed, surrounded by machines that beep and hiss, pump and pull, add fluids and flush them away, a warrior woman lies as she sets moment to moment intention to remain on this side of the veil. Diagnosed with cancer, her world which once included travel, military service, creative endeavors, a business, education and parenting has been reduced (for the moment) to a small room into which people come to visit, sit a’spell, talk, offer prayers, energy healing, candy (and possibly some healthier alternatives), hugs and love. Her sense of humor remains intact and she sometimes warns staff when a meltdown might take place, given the cocktail of meds that are floating through her system.

Today was such a time. as she expressed to her friends on Facebook:

“Some days are harder than others.
Today I wanted to cry. Not because I am weak and not because I’m quitting. But because they brought the wrong jam with my toast.

“I can handle Chemo… Radiation which burnt the heck out of my nose today… I can handle interferon.
But the wrong jam???? How hard is this…bring me the right jam!!!! My life hangs in the balance here and I have the wrong jam. If I die … It’s their fault. I will die of jam failure.” Excerpt from G’s morning meltdown.”

Sometimes it’s the big things that knock us on our butts….stuff like serious or chronic illness, death of those we hold dear and cherished visions that don’t come true according to our plans, relationships that shift, accidents, injuries, financial challenges and other disappointments that threaten to sink our ship of dreams.

When those events show up, the little things like the bolt falling off the lawn mower in the middle of mowing the lawn and you have to hold the handle on, since you can’t find it, realizing that you have run out of drain cleaner when the bath tub backs up, or when car maintenance costs a bit more than anticipated, or like not having the grape jam you wanted to glaze your toast while you find pleasure in the midst of pain, can feel like big things.

What turns it around for me (the first three things happened in my life recently…first world problems all) is realizing that in the midst of them, I have a whole bunch of Just Amazing Moments.

  • A new editing job working on a romance novel
  • Speaking to a group of women last night about the concept of Yoga Off the Mat in which we recognize that life is like a yoga practice
  • Listening to music (Adele at the moment) while I am writing this
  • Being able to work from home
  • Laundry needing folding (yes, that too, since it means I have clean clothing, a washing machine and dryer and laundry detergent)
  • A baby blessing ceremony to do this weekend
  • Loving and wonderful family and friends
  • A deep and profound spiritual connection
  • More writing jobs pouring in
  • Attracting more counseling and coaching clients
  • Honing my intuitive abilities
  • Noting miracles of all shapes and sizes
  • Speaking with a dear friend on the phone in the ICU who is recovering after open heart surgery two weeks ago
  • Planning my son’s wedding next year
  • A successful workout at the gym, when I leave tired, but revitalized, realizing that a bit more than two years ago, I could only walk one step at a time without getting winded, post heart attack
  • Being able to take a nap later today if need be, following gym time shortly
  • Turning 58 in a few weeks with a life beyond what I imagined

I be jammin’

The next time I go to visit my friend, we can sing this song together. Oh, and I will remember the grape jam.

This morning, I opened my e-mail box and out tumbled this message:

“Just wanted to formally announce, Edie, that the world is indeed ready for ALL of you.

Go on.
The Universe”

Mike Dooley, who created TUT (Totally Unique Thoughts) is the man behind the wise words, channeled through him and delivered each day. I have been receiving his missives for many years and am delighted when he seems to be reading my mind. Now, I know that he writes them for a gazillion readers and I am not the only one who got this one, AND it spoke to what I have been feeling for most of my life.

A precocious child with entertaining skills, who loved being in the spotlight, I often felt like I needed to overcompensate for physical challenges that were part and parcel of asthma and podiatric problems. I didn’t want to appear weak or incapable of keeping up with the other kids. So I pushed harder, drove myself more intensely, attempted to increasingly charm and became a people-pleaser. I honed my diplomatic skills and learned to read people well. Being an empath has its up side, as well as its challenges, since I would sometimes take on the emotions and physical sensations of those around me. Sometimes I still do. I have needed to remind myself,  “If it’s not mine, I let it go.” Not easy when my intention is to offer healing.

When on occasion, others have expressed discomfort with my sometimes over the top, high energy self, I have found myself pulling back into a snail shell. Two come to mind; both in workplace settings. As a nursing home social worker, I brought my clown persona named Feather who is a faerie, in to entertain the residents. Colorfully garbed, sparkling and playful, it triggered a reaction from a supervisor who later acknowleged that I called more attention to myself that she desired. The second, a few years later, occurred when a supervisor in a psychiatric hospital who was an ‘old school nurse,’ and was rules oriented, had a hard time with the decor in my office. The walls were embellished with affirming images and words to inspire the patients and myself. She actually took something down. It had something to do with the art of surrender. She wrote on it, the word NEVER.  While I agree that giving up in the face of challenges is not optimal, surrender implies taking pause and re-evaluating. A letting go into what is and not just focusing on ‘what if and if only.’ Later on, we made peace and not long after, she was diagnosed with cancer and has since passed.

Although it is tempting to remain a chameleon, a designation I had embraced, since it helped me to fit in and be accepted by those whose approval I craved, I find it far more rewarding to be true to who I am. So, just who is that?

  • An over the top enthusiastic 4 year old in the body of a nearly 58 year old.
  • A colorfully creative journalist who paints word pictures.
  • A passionate woman who desires a loving partner to share the exquisite dance of life.
  • A purposeful world server.
  • An intuitive healer who is tapped into the Universe and calls in messages and life force energy.
  • A deeply spiritual person who knows she is a part of and not apart from God/Goddess/All That Is.
  • A trusting soul who knows that the Highest Good always prevails, despite appearance at times.
  • A lovingly kick-ass coach, therapist and speaker.
  • A comsummate networker who connects with new people every day.
  • A resilient thriver who has made it through several health crises and major losses.
  • A cosmic concierge who knows how to help people get what they want in their lives.
  • A spiritual gangsta who takes the message of love out into the ‘hood, which is really the whole world.
  • A Hug Mobster Armed With Love who is helping to bring folks together in love and cooperation via Hugs Across America.
  • A Bliss Mistress who encourages people to live rich, full, juicy lives.
  • An Opti-Mystic who sees the world through the eyes of possibility.

Like everyone reading this, I  am a cosmic creation and ever evolving work in progress, no longer afraid to be seen, putting my whole self in, as if I am doing the Hokey Pokey.  Care to join me in bringing the beauty, magic and wonder of who you truly are into all aspects of your life?

Look out, world!



My friend Jeff Brown is a spiritual journeyer and witty wordsmith. He created a film called Karmageddon in which he explored (among other things), the concept of the guru. This morning, I saw a Facebook posting he shared with these words:

“Having bashed gurus for so long, I pretty much gave up on the possibility of finding one. And then, when I least expected it, I stumbled upon this formidable little fellow at the Omega Institute. What I enjoy most about his approach to teaching is that he doesn’t bother with words- just sounds, grunts and the like- and he doesn’t pay much attention to detachment practices, preferring, as a rule, to jump right into life, biting any and all fingers that come his way, and eating as often as possible…. Meet my new guru, James.” Below the words was a photo of him all cuddly with an adorable little dude who looked a few months newly launched into the world.

My response was this: “Here and now, present moment awareness. Energy in…energy out. When hungy eat, when tired, sleep, when full, pee, poop, fart and burp. Pretty simple teachings. A sat guru, indeed.”

How much more fulfilling would our lives be if only we could emulate those tiny humans? I know that when I attempt to control outcomes in my life, I miss out on the infinite possibilities that await on the playground that is my life. I love watching babies interact with the world around them. Everything is a toy to explore. A Zen concept is that of Shoshin or Beginner’s mind.

“In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities, but in the expert’s there are few.” We adults play this game in which we claim to be experts at all kinds of things, from our jobs, to our education, from raising children to telling others how to run their lives. Kids just are. Mindfulness embodied, instead of mind-full-ness with all kinds of busy buzzy (ooooh, look, a squirrel) thoughts that have us off and running without warning. We pretend we know the answers to life’s questions, when a laughing baby really does get the cosmic joke.

Every time I have seen this video, I have laughed and cried, both with delight and wistfulness. I reclaim any sense of innocence I may have lost and commit to exploring the world with all senses fully engaged in this here and now precious moment. Let playful wisdom rain and reign.

This morning as I was driving to an appointment, I was musing about the direction my life has taken in the past year or so. Twelve months ago, I was employed full time as a web content writer, working from home and bringing in more income than I ever did as a social worker. I felt a sense of freedom financially that was unfamiliar to me. I was able to easily pay my bills and have plenty left over to save, donate and spend as I chose. I was responsible and not frivolous with spending. And then….. a year and three months after I was hired, the company was faced with budget cuts which meant laying off a large portion of our creative team. I found myself only in a mild state of panic, knowing that I would be able to rebound quickly. I did, with a new job in less than two weeks that looked like it would be long term, until…..a few months later, the non-profit was not able to get the funding it needed to keep me on. Since then, I have been doing all sorts of free lance writing, teaching, coaching, counseling and editing. Although I have been able to pay bills, there has remained an underlying sense of trepidation that I won’t be able to do so. I’ve needed to be more frugal than I was a year ago.

I question the pattern that I have been following. The consistent paycheck that I had received for a dozen years as a social worker in a psychiatric hospital came at a price; my peace of mind and health. The salary and benefits that came from this other job was short lived, but it does tell me something. The woman who became my supervisor had recruited me after reading my various on line blogs; this one included.  That meant (in my mind) that Spirit was working behind the scenes to orchestrate that job. Even so, there is something unconscious going on that has placed me on the career roller coaster ride I have been on for several decades. I have prayed about it and then asked who or what am I praying to?  Is it an interventive entity or an all pervading energy? Is it my own doing, or non-doing that brings in the bucks?  Is it trust and surrender to whatever is unfolding?

Back to the road trip. Just as I was in the depths of pondering my next steps, a truck rounded the hill in the opposite direction and I laughed as I always do when I see it, since it tells me that the Universe is sending me a powerful pay-attention-to-this-one message. The truck is from a company that sells bathroom and kitchen fixtures. It is called…wait for it…Weinstein Supply Company. In case you hadn’t noticed, that is my last name. Whenever it shows up, it is a reminder that my needs are always taken care of and there is an unlimited supply coming from my Source. Sighing, I continued driving and the song by The Flaming Lips called Do You Realize? came on the radio on WXPN.

Do You Realize – that you have the most beautiful face
Do You Realize – we’re floating in space –
Do You Realize – that happiness makes you cry
Do You Realize – that everyone you know someday will die
And instead of saying all of your goodbyes – let them know
You realize that life goes fast
It’s hard to make the good things last
You realize the sun doesn’t go down
It’s just an illusion caused by the world spinning round
Do You Realize – Oh – Oh – Oh
Do You Realize – that everyone you know
Someday will die –
And instead of saying all of your goodbyes – let them know
You realize that life goes fast
It’s hard to make the good things last
You realize the sun doesn’t go down
It’s just an illusion caused by the world spinning round
Do You Realize – that you have the most beautiful face
Do You Realize
Songwriters: Dave Fridmann / Michael Ivins / Steven Drozd / Wayne Coyne
Do You Realise? lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC
The song reminds me that our time here on the planet is limited and it is in our best interest to live it fully and freely without overt and unecessary worry and fear.
On my way back from the appointment, another song snagged my attention, called The Life You Chose by Jason Isbell. A line jumped out at me: “Are you living the life you chose? Are you living the life that chose you?” Hmmm…..  There are times when I am on both ends of the spectrum. I make consious decisions each day that as it unfolds, it will bring with it all kinds of adventures and along with it, miracles. What I choose, in some ways, does choose me, since I have found that like attracts like far more than opposites attract. So what am I choosing?
* Trusting that my needs will always be met.
* Knowing that I have the skills and experience to bring in what my services are worth.
* Believing that all is well and that worrying about anything is a waste of my time and energy.
* Finding the same kind of freedom I felt when holding that well paying job.
* Sensing that something even better awaits my welcome.
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