“Know your yeses, your no’s and your maybes. It makes life a hell of a lot simpler. You can still be flexible. But get to know them. They are there for a reason.”~CAW
Simply powerful/powerfully simple words from my friend Courtney A. Walsh who I think of as a fusion of wise woman sitting atop a mountain, basking in the elements and sharing the ‘cosmic joke’ when seekers come to her, that they had it all along (the wisdom for which they turn to her) and a silly, saucy, playfully poetic, mud pie making, finger painting pigtailed little child.
There was a time in my life, when not only did I not exercise my yes, no, maybe so muscles; I didn’t think it was ok to even acknowledge them, since I wanted to maintain the status quo which felt good most days. I hadn’t yet learned that nothing lasts forever in the form it is in, no matter how much of a chameleon/caregiver/co-dependent/good girl I was. It wasn’t until I took the Cuddle Party facilitator training in 2005 that I stretched big time around consent and expression; saying what wasn’t being said which I had not been doing, in the service of keeping the peace. Now, I easily express preferences, ask for what I want, go for the win-win and assume cooperation.
It was in perfect alignment with something I heard yesterday from my dear friend Peter Moses who spoke at Circle of Miracles on
The Lasting Beauty of Inner Space
In the drama of living in the world, we are conditioned to look outward to people, things and the objects of our senses. What a blessing it is to have Attention turn back around to the timeless inner dimension. Here and Now, we can know ourselves to BE that peace and joy that we seek but never find in the changing world of time and circumstance. With words, music, sharing and laughter… let’s go Inside to play!
I drank it all in, mesmerized by what my anam cara (soul friend) had to share, kvelling (Yiddish for ‘bursting with pride’), like a parent whose kid did something most marvelous, tears and goose bumps and knowing nods of resonance. A singer song writer and kids’ edu-tainer, he regaled us with stories from his own life; some I have heard many times before, but never tire of them, and showered us with love, his own songs and covers of Paul Simon and Robert Palmer songs (turning Addicted to Love to Addicted to Thought, since our monkey minds can scoop us up and carry us away with thinking about thinking, or not thinking about thinking)
In the midst, he offered some guidance about honoring our preferences, but not taking them too seriously. Our minds are meaning making machines that tell us how we are ‘supposed’ to feel about anything that comes our way. Two people can have the exact same experience and come away with diametrically opposed thoughts and feelings. Yes, I prefer that I sleep 8 hours a night, but there are just some mornings that come way sooner than I would like. Yes, I would love it if traffic flowed smoothly and the cars in front of me would get out of the way, but then I remember that I am traffic too and that there are cars behind me, likely wishing I wasn’t in front of them…except then they wouldn’t be able to read my ‘hippie bumper stickers’. Yes, I desire to have all of my dreams come true RIGHT NOW and I know that things and people and experiences may show up on a different schedule than mine. When I am in alignment with that, there is a coherence and not a ‘disturbance in The Force’.
I got a chuckle out of a line that Peter kept repeating. In his 50’s with a full schedule of teaching, speaking, recording, being a husband and father of 5 (the youngest a 3 year old little dude who reminds him that love matters most), his thoughts (like mine) sometimes slip through the cracks and song lyrics that used to flow like honey, tend these days to play hide and seek. He shrugged his shoulders and laughed “What are ya gonna do?” I am now adopting that philosophy, since I could get myself all worked up over my own ‘middle aged moments’ or just embrace them.
What came to mind was this segment from America’s Got Talent, for your viewing pleasure.