Your peace is within and without. It exists in the sounds, in the noise – that which you resist so much. That which so often annoys you – that is your peace. Your peace and joy comes from without and it is in these experience that one feels whole, feels complete. It is in these experiences that one truly finds peace – finds enjoyment and the beauty and solitude of life that is to be shared with others.
This is the time of balance. That which you seek in solitude, in restful states and in quiet times do not allow for peace. For it is in this very belief that this is where you will find it is exactly what becomes your downfall and precisely why you haven't found it. You are expecting -you are setting up a scenario perfectly in alignment with what you believe based on what others have told you and therefore based on what you expect. And yet it doesn’t happen. And despite this, you continue to show up and continue to try and the more you try the more you fail and the more you fail the more you doubt yourself.
What if I told you that peace is already found – peace is now – peace is not in the solitude it is not in the quiet – peace is in the noise it is in the spaces the cracks and the crevices all around you. It is in the noise, it is in the brightness, it is in the sounds all around you – that is peace. You don’t understand because you have been taught to believe it is not so – you have been taught to believe that it is in silence one finds peace and yet in silence as much as noise is where true peace exists.
What is noise – what is sound what is distraction? It is a moment of awareness that life is too much that life feels overwhelming that life is beautiful. That life is full of moments, full of possibilities, of creation - that life exists. It is in the noise that life is real that life comes to life. What we see is not real – but what we hear is.
What about people who are unable to hear? Sometimes people need balance – extreme balance because the sounds would become too much for them so they learn to adapt to life with a delicate balance – of needing both their understanding of noise as they know it and life as they see it – that is their balance. Your balance is the sound itself – it is not what you see – it is what you hear what you feel. When your sound is off balance then so are you – your sound is your equilibrium.
Imagine for a moment that you could no longer hear. What would you feel? I’d feel like half of me was cut off – I’d feel sadness at not being able to hear my children laugh or speak – I’d feel lost – sound is my balance. The thoughts in my head would get to be too much – because it is the only sound I hear – my thoughts – I can’t turn my thoughts off – they would literally eat me alive. I wouldn’t know what was real and what wasn’t – I’d experience things but that wouldn’t seem real – it would seem fake, like a movie – I wouldn’t know what was real and what wasn’t – I would panic. I’d get lost in my own head – in my own story – in my own mind.
You can’t shut off your thoughts and yet it serves as a reminder that you are at peace – at perfect balance with life. Imagine a seesaw that moves up and down depending on what is weighing it down on either end. And in the moment of perfect balance both ends line up perfectly and it is as though time stands still for a brief moment before the distribution of the weight comes back into place and one end rises while another falls. That is your balance with life – with peace. When everything aligns perfectly and there is a moment of calm before everything falls back into place as it should be – as it must be for life to continue to be lived – to progress. Peace exists in those split seconds, those instances of pure alignment where in comes balance - equal distribution of weight on both sides of the spectrum.
So how do I balance noise and quiet? It already happens. When there is noise there is no quiet and when there is no quiet there is noise. It is not about control it is about letting go. In the noise – living in the noise feels overwhelming – it feels like too much. It feels like I don’t have control. Precisely – because you don’t have control – it is in the noise that you let go because you don’t have control -you can’t control the noise around you – you can’t control anything. So peace is not peace of mind peace is letting go.
Noise pulls you in – it forces you to be present – in the moment. When you resist the noise you are trying to reset to a state of being that does not exist – it cannot exist in that moment and it won’t happen with you trying to force it – if anything you will be even more distracted with thoughts, feelings, emotions and frustrations over everything that has distracted you. It is letting go and allowing the moment to be exactly as it is – to be present and to allow completely – it’s a call for peace.
The more you hear the noise, the more you feel distracted and then the more at peace you will become because the more present you will be. Peace is presence. Noise pulls you into the present, into the moment, into your feelings. Feelings about the person talking, feelings about the song playing, feelings about your thoughts about your feelings. It pulls you out of the light and into the shadow so that you are able to work through them – not ignore nor hide – but to face them and move through them – that is peace.
Noise brings us back to reality – that which we live in – it brings us face to face with our resistance – with that which we do not want to face with that which we want to pretend doesn’t exist – it brings up all of our issues – our stuff. And it is in the acceptance of noise that we find peace - true peace.
Thanks to an awesome recommendation from New Age Hipster I've been reading Tosha Silver's It's Not Your Money: How to Live from Divine Abundance and in the usual way in which the Divine works - this book came across my life in exactly the moment I needed it the most.
I just started reading it yesterday and I'm not even done but I feel compelled to share the impact it's already had in my life. See yesterday was a day filled with a ton of self-imposed stress and anxiety around letting go. Around trusting the Divine's plan and removing the burden of control, expectations and outcomes that I so often place on myself. Asking me to relinquish control is like trying to take candy out of the hands of a toddler who has already had a taste. It's impossible and it's so ingrained in me - that need, that desire that in those moments nothing else exists. And yet I have known for awhile that it is one of the biggest lessons and things that I am called to overcome.
So I ask myself - Maricella, if you know this why can't you just do it? Why is it so difficult? Why does letting go literally feel like death? Like if I let go I will die. That's legit how it feels to me. It has become such a part of me that I wouldn't know how to even if I tried. And obviously knowing that it is something I needed to do didn't help - wanting it to happen didn't work either because no matter how much I tried and prayed and thought I surrendered - I wasn't able to. And I felt like a failure. Because doesn't it make perfect sense that in trying to relinquish control - I was trying to control exactly how or what that should look like? It became a vicious cycle that I was determined to get out of and yet unable to. Cue in Tosha Silver.
It was at the point that her book presented itself to me that I had finally come to a place where I accepted that this is not something I could do alone. That I needed help. That in order to give up - I needed to be open to receiving from others. And so despite my insistence that I could do it all on my own - that I needed to do it on my own - I finally relinquished a bit of control. In the past week I attended a beautiful healing ceremony, met with my Reiki teacher to receive some of my own Reiki love and will be later today attending a sound healing gathering. Additionally, I've had some pretty amazing Reiki sessions with other people who in the sharing of the intuitive messages I received for them - I realized were messages just as much for me. The Divine was speaking and sharing through me to others and back at me again - haha! We really are all connected!
Tosha's book is all about trusting, letting go and complete surrender. For me money has been one of the main roots of my own fear so the book came to me in that format but in reality the message is about so much more to me than money. For me it is about complete surrender of my life to the Divine. To trust wholly and completely that I am exactly where I need to be and that when it is time to act, I will be guided to do just that. And while these are words I would have said that I knew and understood, I needed to be open to receiving them from someone else for it to actually resonate with me. And for the first time in my life - I surrender. (ps - it's 11:11 when I stopped writing this so I'll take that as a huge amen sista from above - Thank You!)
Fear is my friend. I like to welcome her often - whether it be for Sunday dinner or morning tea. She has become a constant companion in my life - ever knocking - ever present. And I have found that despite my best efforts to ignore her, it makes her all the more insistent on hanging out. And so I have begun to welcome her in, slowly and cautiously. I have greeted her with a warm welcome at the door and have invited her in. Let's talk she said. And now I listen.
And she says...
Don't fret my child for I have never left you. That which you have hid, ignored and denied has always been. I have worn many masks but I am now here - bearing my all to you free of illusion. I have arrived to tell you that it is not I that you have chosen to deny but yourself. In your feigned ignorance you have chosen to live a life full of excuses, expectations and conditions. A world in which barriers and limitations abound, the freedom of which is so far removed you would not recognize it if it came knocking on your door. You have claimed it is other who have dimmed your light and the truth is that you have chosen to dim it yourself. Beneath the veil of your illusion you have tried to live a life that is full of comfort and knowing. A life in which feels safe and yet in that safety is exactly that which you have been trying to break free from all along - me.
In your recognition of me you become free and in your freedom may you find peace. Peace with the understanding that you can deny me no more. Peace with the knowing that no longer will I remain in hiding. When you sense me I will be in your face I will knock the wind out of you if necessary - I will tug and pull until you listen. Listen to me so that you may listen to yourself once and for all. To finally recognize that I am not to be ignored - not to be put into a box - not to be swept under the rug. To understand that it is your choice to ignore me or to hold me by the hand. To hold me in love and let me know that it is okay. That you see me, that you are sorry, that you forgive me and that you love me. And in your love I ask that you release me.
I have been your constant companion since childhood. I have been present in the warm embrace of your children, in the admiration of a beautiful bird on a rainy day and exchanged as a comforting meal with loved ones. And in that way I have served you. Served as a reminder of all that we choose to create. That in our creation of that which does not serve us we may choose to let go - we may choose love. In my love for you may I have served as one of your many teachers. May you deny me no more but instead hold me in peace, thanks and forgiveness. Should we ever cross paths again may you look upon me with fondness and greet me warmly, welcoming me over for tea after which I will depart. After which my return will no longer be needed.
Lately I’ve been afraid of falling. Wearing boots all winter with no traction on the bottom does not help - but neither does all this winter ice. But this immense fear happened almost overnight. Suddenly I have this irrational and very real fear that I am going to bust my crap on the ice and break something. It has gotten so bad that about 5 minutes into taking an evening walk with Matt yesterday I just about cried and almost turned around to go back home because ice was everywhere - almost as though it was teasing me - daring me to walk so I could slip and fall. Because yes, suddenly ice can talk.
Matt who so kindly offered his hand on a particularly tricky piece of ice made the comment that he's not afraid of falling and suddenly it hit me. I am so afraid of falling which is such an accurate metaphor for my life right now. Transitions await and my fear - while I recognize it - has kept me stuck. Afraid to leap I am clinging on to any comfort I can find. And not even shoes with better traction can help me because this is a fear that runs deep. In that moment all I could be grateful for was returning home after that very scary walk.
We live across the street from a school which means that on any given day there are numerous cars parked in front of our house. And now arrives winter - and with all the snow piles the only saving grace has been the narrow pathways shoveled out for us to access the street from the sidewalk. The problem is that lately all I seem to be able to notice is all the cars that park directly in front of our cleared walkway, preventing me from accessing the street from directly in front of my house. I was so angry one day that I wrote a note and left it on someone's car. I was polite enough in the note but inside I was fuming. Like why would someone do that? Do they not see the cleared pathway? There's obviously enough space on either side of your car - why do you have to park directly in front of it?!!
So as I always do when I am angry - I took a deep breath and I reflected. What does this mean? Why am I so angry about this? All this means is a little inconvenience to me in terms of having to go around the car or walk a little further down in either direction to another open walkway. The thing is I could fall on our walkway but for some reason it doesn’t feel as much of a risk as going the other direction. What I came up with in that moment is that it is comfortable to always know where you are going but that's not how life works. Sometimes there are things thrown our way that we need to adapt to. And I know I am supposed to take it as a sign from God that in that moment - that particular direction is not for me. The problem is my ego and my shoes win - always. And what that manifests as is fear and anger. I was able to calm down enough in that moment to have enough sense to remove the note from the car and leave it as that but I still struggled with the message from above and I knew this is something I'd be working on for awhile.
A call and a clearing
As I do every morning after dropping my children off at school, this morning I went home to meditate before getting ready and going to work. I received a lot of messages but one very specific call to action which was to donate my shoes. Now anyone who knows me knows I LOVE shoes - or at least I did. When shopping I was more likely to leave with shoes than any other piece of clothing. Over the last year though I have reduced my clothing and shoes significantly which was a huge feat. But today spirit so gently reminded me that I wasn't yet done letting go of the one thing I still struggled to release. My shoes, my comfort. Up until this point I was more likely to donate a pile of clothes rather than shoes on any given day despite the fact that I probably have worn the same 2 pairs of shoes all winter long. But when spirit talks I listen so into the closet I went.
One step forward . . .
I felt accomplished and clear. I left the house with a huge bag of shoes and a bunch of Mykel's old school bags to donate. The song "bag lady" comes to mind, "Bag lady you gone hurt your back dragging all them bags like that...." I mean yes - talk about releasing!! My shoes, my comfort - them bags - the crap I carry around with me all the time. I'm well on my way. Woohoo!! I'm free! I step outside into the bright morning sun and then bam! Frozen, like a ton of bricks. What awaits me but a flippin car blocking our walkway who clearly had a good 20 feet on either side front and back and yet here it was - blocking MY path!!! I then proceeded to do what any sane person would do. I turned back around - walked into the house and screamed so loud I was certain the neighbors heard. Once I composed myself I left the house, bags in hands, on shoulders - everywhere and I just stood in front the car - suddenly the weight of the world on my shoulders - and I cried. In that moment all I could do was ask why - ask God for help because I just couldn't do it. It was too much. And it was then that I noticed the logo on the wheel -Subaru.
For those who aren't familiar, Subaru is the Japanese name for the Pleiades star cluster which is also represented in their logo. And I knew - this was happening just for me. All of it. A welcome home of sorts. The return to source - to who I am - to where I came from - to what has kept me supported. To what has brought me back to my own light. Myself. And I surrendered. And in that surrender I walked in either direction - home.
Message from Spirit
The return home. You are a wanderer. You are meant to explore – not in the comfort of the paths that are neatly laid before you but out of the confines of all the structures and binds that keep you tied. You are meant to be free and move with the elements - with the wind. To create your own path not follow that which others have created for you because it is there and it is safe. You are meant to trek where no others have gone far and wide because that is who you are. Your path will not lead to destruction – it cannot. It is impossible as long as you are the one leading it. The fear – the practicality of it all is not lost upon you. It does not feel practical it does not feel safe and yet it is the only path you can possibly take. The only one that is known to you. Everything else feels unknown and beautiful. Unknown and beautiful. Full of possibilities.
Growing up I was always taught to say "excuse me" whenever I burped. I mean in the world of fast food, grease and things that I probably shouldn't have been eating anyway, I can understand that it was the polite thing to do. When I exposed other people to my burps, and maybe even the smell that accompanied it, saying excuse me was probably the least I could do. Over time it became just part of something I did as if on auto-pilot and that which I taught my children as well. You burp, you say excuse me.
The thing is lately I've been burping for seemingly no rhyme or reason. My diet has changed significantly and I can tell the difference between a food burp and an air burp. And lately what's been happening, along with my own energetic clearing and shifting, is a huge increase in "air burps." First thing in the morning, after a great meditation, during some great breathing exercises. My burps have become my friend. Like a welcome reprieve after a long, hard energy clearing session. A pat on the back from above that I did a great job clearing the muck either in my sleep or through my own intentional work.
So as the burps started increasing I no longer felt the urge to say excuse me because I no longer think of my burps as some offensive release of air that inconvenienced others. Instead my burps have become my greatest blessing. A physical sign that I'm doing the damn thing. I am releasing decades, lifetimes of stuck and stagnant energy. And after a significant release I belch loudly and proudly. The bigger the better - yes!!! And I am teaching my children how to pay attention to their own energetic releases as well, cheering them on from the sidelines when they burp. (I'm still working on the farting, but a little at a time, eh?)
And when the occasional stinky food burp rises up I recognize it as a sign from my body that I am not treating it kindly. That I am filling it with further muck which means further work. And some days that's okay - some days that bag of french fries is all that will satisfy me. I show myself compassion, I let it go and I continue doing the work.
And so instead of saying excuse me I say thank you. Thank you burps for becoming my friend. Thank you God for creating a body that allows such a release. And thank you Maricella for doing the work and recognizing the difference between offensive and awesome. XO!
My entire life has been made up with lessons, teachers having arrived in various forms. With every reflection, every journal entry comes the realization of the exact forms those teachers have taken. On a recent reflection my teacher came through as my hair. For those who don’t know me, I have decided to grow my hair out. That wasn’t my original intention. It started with a breakup with my hairdresser at the end of last year. A devastating loss and yet I now realize was one of the first lessons my hair was teaching me. Lesson 1: Let go of relationships that do not serve me.
Lesson 2: Don’t care what others think but more importantly don’t tie your importance to your looks. My hair had become my identity but more importantly a reflection of how I felt on the inside. Anytime it grew out even slightly I felt like I was suffocating, and cutting it was therapeutic – a release from the confines I believed society had placed on me but in reality were merely a reflection of the walls I placed myself in. So without even realizing it I kind of gave up on my hair. I let it do what it wanted to do. I felt zero pull to cut it and was able to ignore it once it got the point of where I’d normally feel suffocated. It just didn’t bother me anymore.
Lesson 3: Let go, but within comfortable reason
After a few months of it growing out I finally accepted the fact that I was actually letting it grow out. The thought of my hair finally came back on my radar and while I didn’t know where the journey would take me I didn’t feel tied to any particular outcome. It was about this time that I felt it necessary to get a little trim because while there are many things I could feel comfortable with, having a mullet was not one of them. So I went to my new hairstylist and proclaimed I was growing it out which leads to Lesson 4: Acceptance without expectations.
See usually I would have a plan whenever I attempted to grow it out in the past. It would include such things as having a cute, short bob or to have bangs or whatever “on-trend” thing was that I felt I wanted to be at the moment. Inevitably my attempts would fail, suffocation would ensue and it’d end up getting chopped off anyway but it was always a valiant effort. This time around though felt different. I didn’t have a plan other than to wait and see how I felt – maybe to put it more aptly it was to wait to see how my hair felt because it isn’t weird to think of your hair having a life of it’s own, is it? Which leads me to Lesson 5: I am not my hair
My hair is not me and I am not my hair. And yet I have allowed my hair to express how I felt on the inside since I was so afraid to project that on the outside. My hair, having been short, exuded confidence. It made me feel powerful, fearless and a risk-taker. I received compliments all the time, often with people (men and women) exclaiming how brave I was- how they could never pull off short hair or be bold enough to do so. And in some way I felt victorious – like yes, I showed you, I showed everyone. I am CONFIDENT! I am FEARLESS! I AM…I AM….I am……scared. I am none of these things. I want to believe that I am these things but I don’t feel them at all. And while my appearance shows you what I want you to believe on the inside I am a scared little girl who is trying to navigate this world that feels really scary. And as I touch my hair I realize that it has merely been a reflection of my own doubt. It has been a reflection of my own ideas of self-worth. And it came as the perfect teacher when I needed it the most.
Lesson 6: Letting Go
I don’t know where my hair is going and I don’t care. All I know is how I feel in any given moment. In fact, the only mirror I have in my home is in the bathroom and even then I rarely take a second look once I am out of the shower. My hair will dry as it’s supposed to, it will style itself as it wants to and if I ever get the residual sensation of not being able to breathe, as I occasionally still do, I have a great collection of headbands that seems to do the trick.
My hair has taught me to stand strong in who I am no matter how that looks on the inside or outside. Some days I feel like curling up in bed and not moving. Other days I feel like dancing in the street without care as to who sees. And you know what, that is okay. My hair has taught me to accept where I am in my life. Life is a journey – a roller coaster of lessons and love and beauty and joy. And no I don’t have it all figured out nor do I need to. All I have to do is trust that whatever I need will come my way when it is meant to and everything else is just noise. I forgive myself for all the times I did not express compassion on my journey and I am grateful for listening to myself this time around.