Reflections From My True Self

Remembering Who I Really Am


Clear Space

Even before I am fully awake, today I am tempted to feel blue. I want to look at the landscape of my life colored with fear and doubt, and I want to cast around for some unease to hold onto, something that will save me any efforts to pay attention, to sit with discomfort, to entertain confusion.  Today I want the easy way, just to mire.

But I have a session in a short time and I have to prepare for it. So I do, I prepare the space the way a dancer warms up for her performance, with familiar movements, stretching gently, without analysis or deep thought, just doing what I always do.

And as I do this, I find that there is no room in my energy field for all that heaviness which I was holding so dearly, as if my life depended on it anchoring me. That routine for warm-up, that careful and meticulous process of clearing the space in the room and in my energy field sweeps out everything that does not belong there, including my limiting thoughts, my straitjacket perspective, my self-involved emotions.  After clearing, I can not invoke them, even if I try.

I am so grateful that, in creating the clear and sacred space for my client, in offering her this first gift of my heart, I wind up, also, gifting my Self.

I am reminded, this is how it always is: when I gift another, I gift myself; when I bless you, I am blessed, too.

Photo by Gabriella Fabbri on

Photo by Gabriella Fabbri on


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Struggle, Contained

I ran into Jane today, on Clark street. She told me she’s struggling, going from a bad situation to a worse one. Later, she left me a message. Her situation turned worse.

I don’t want to think about this; I feel impotent. I can’t be the hero and pull her out on the back of a dragon. I don’t want to think about this. That energy of struggle is so contagious- there’s enough going on around me that tempts me continuously towards struggle.

My clarity wavers.

Suddenly, abruptly, I am aware in my body, in my gut, that the strong, safe container I build for coaching is not, as I have thus far believed, only for the benefit of my clients. It dawns on me that, in that container, hearing Jane’s situation would strike me differently: there would be no danger of contagion, no overwhelm.

I long for the groundedness of that container.

I relish the new recognition of it as a blessing, not just for others, but also for myself.

How to bring its gifts into other parts of my life? That’s the question I hold open in my hand now.

Photo by: Javier Gonzalez on

Photo by: Javier Gonzalez on

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Sage Mother plant came to my little bit of a garden late in the fall, when I wondered if she would manage to take properly. She came to me as a gift from a stranger, a gardener who loved her plants and wanted their care to continue even after they left her garden. It was a reluctant gift, because I am no knowledgeable gardener in these latitudes. Now it is summer and Sage has extended, lifted her branches, unfurled her velvety leaves. She blooms in astonishing purples, flowers that appear like tiny faces, ready to speak.

And I sit nearby, amidst the savory fragrance of her leaves. I am aware of her vitality, even when I look away from her. I close my eyes and realize that our roles have changed. When I planted her, I felt motherly, protective.

Now, sitting here, I feel her protective reach draw me in like a hug. She is my teacher, gently, silently, sharing some of her wisdom with me, inviting me to come often to visit her in my little garden.

Photo credit: Ayla87 (Michael & Christa Richert) on

Photo credit: Ayla87 (Michael & Christa Richert) on


The Ways I Serve

I walk among the bluebells that spill over the forest floor, and I think about the ways I serve. For all of my roles, for all the different ways that I could compartmentalize my service, as a mother and wife, a life coach and spiritual companion, a volunteer, a friend, I know this:

When I am fully present and engaging the whole of my Self, I can be a vehicle for others to reach into themselves and to touch what lives most powerfully within them, to reconnect with their soul and recall who they yearn to be. I can be a vehicle for others to discover their voice, to recognize their essence, to own who they are at their depths. I can be a vehicle for them to recognize what is real, and sacred, to them.

And to do so, I have only to see in them their transcendence, only to remember there is that in each person I encounter. Some, I can perceive, know this about themselves, while some waver, and others have no awareness of it. Many who cross my path ache to remember it.

But this process of recognition circles back in a gift for me. For, in order to be that vehicle, I must recognize and claim the same transcendence in myself, and I must grant myself compassion when I waver. To be that vehicle, I must remember that the potential to express that essence and manifest it at all times is always there, within me. That is what I must remember in my encounters with others, and my encounters with myself.

Photo credit: Gramps (Phil Edon) at

Photo credit: Gramps (Phil Edon) at


Fully Here

My head is full of thoughts of conscious creation and of setting intentions to engage energy. I am planning a class discussion even as I am out in the world, at the post office, doing groceries. I am there, but not quite. Neither am I fully here.


I place an order for refried beans in Spanish, because I am shopping in that kind of a place, where I can speak Spanish to the man behind the counter. I am friendly enough, but somewhat absent, still thinking of the session that put me on this train of thought about setting intentions and making requests.


A voice at my side asks if I am Colombian. It is a young man, with skin so smooth, I think he can’t yet be shaving. He tells me his “prometida,” his intended, is Colombian, and he recognizes my accent. His eyes radiate joy when he mentions her. He leaves with a smile, when his order arrives, and I am left bathed in his fresh, expectant energy, in his exuberance.


Gratitude breaks over me, for the grace that comes with him, that remains within me, reminding me that I much prefer to be present to this, What Is before me, to this gift that is the Now, and experience this immediacy, the intimacy of what I am living and breathing at this moment. I much prefer to be fully here.

Photo Credit: Andrea Friedmann

Photo Credit: Andrea Friedmann



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Every morning, after dropping my children off at school, I drive away thinking of all the work that lies ahead of me, of the demands of the day, of the ways that I will parse my time and the people I will attend to.  When I arrive, every day, I park my car in the alley, distracted by all that is required of me, all that I want to give.

But when I open the door to get out, each time, I am surprised by the solitary wildflower that is growing between the cracks in the concrete.  What began as an improbable,  scrawny little branch last year has now grown many limbs, is occupying space. And it blooms abundantly, colorful and bright, amidst the drabness of the neglected alley, in spite of the dust.

I find myself slowing before it, despite the expected arrival of a client or the pile of tasks that awaits on my desk. I find myself slowing before it in gratitude, for the surprise of it, for its beauty, for the layers of meanings, and the reminders it holds for me.

Every day, I stop a moment, to gaze upon a wildflower, and to recover my Self.


A Gift From the Sea



A smooth, white stone came to me, carried in a soft, warm wave of the Pacific Ocean, it rolled against my foot on the beach. It fits in my palm, and has a perfect circle carved out in its core. Like a large bead. I could hang it around my neck on a ribbon.


To remind me. That the water and sand can rub through stone. That, given time, an orifice, precisely spherical, could appear. That sometimes I am stone. And sometimes I am water.