Less Thought. More Body.

Whether we are conscious of it or not there is a constant stream of self-evaluation going on in the form of critical self talk: I need to work harder. I should get out of the house more. Why am I so tired? I need to lose weight. Why did I have to eat so much? Am I a good enough x? Was I too defensive with so-and-so? Am I pulling my weight? And it goes on. Fearing judgment, we evaluate ourselves from a socially-agreed-upon yet often out-of-reach standard, exhausting ourselves with self-admonishment at failing in every regard.

But instead, we can step outside of thought and enjoy our lives.

Dating becomes an extension of that mindset. We sit across from a potential partner while our minds carry on the perpetual critique but now with a new target, Is he smart enough? I don’t love his clothes. He seems too serious. Does he make enough money? What will my friends think of me for dating him? Or even, Does he like me?

But again, we can step outside of thought and check in at a deeper level.

I’ve been listening to the book Deeper Dating by Ken Page since October. It’s taking a while to get through since I haven’t been on many long drives lately. But I have been dating, trying out suggested exercises and actively considering the philosophy. I love this book.

On all my dates for the last three months, I have stepped away at some point (gone to the bathroom) to sit alone, in silence, and feel my most base emotive sense, beyond questions. Am I happy? Laughing? Is my energy expanding? Or is it shrinking? Am I turned on? Asking what does it feel like in my body, rather than mental processing as my guide. My body feels and energy have determined whether I choose to keep spending time with someone.

How do I respond to this person? is a different paradigm than…
Does this person seem like a good match for me?

There was a hand on mine and I felt warmth.
An arm around my shoulder felt secure.
His gestures felt generous.
When we kissed, I was charged.
When alone, I was thrilled.

All systems go.
Move intuitively.

Honor Thyself

What follows is taken from a FB post I made a week and a half ago. I was in the middle of writing the Plant Medicine series and didn’t want to interrupt that flow here, but the response I got was overwhelming – It so clearly resonated with my tribe that it only makes sense to share it here as well.

11/6/2017

Remember this picture? I was soooo skinny! And I was so sad… can you see it?

I woke up this morning feeling on fire and I thought back to July, in India, and how sad and skinny I was. I was defeated. I had lost my curves and my fire. I was so sick of myself, of my choices, of my neediness, of my controlling and addictive behaviors. I was crying alone in my room, night after night, demanding God’s intervention in my life. I gave it up to God and started following my intuition. We already know what to do… We just need to do it! I was exhausted, but I picked myself up and I made some changes.

Nearly four months since I’ve had a drink or any drugs, since I’ve had sex or any negative energy around me. It’s been nearly four months since I’ve compromised my own self worth so someone else could feel better. Four months that I’ve put myself first, that I’ve been eating healthy, that I’ve been meditating consistently instead of just leading others through their meditations. Four months that I’ve held my own time and space to be healthy instead of everyone else’s. Saturday, I canceled my salsa plans to write. Yesterday I canceled my writing plans to shop. I did what I wanted to do.

It’s clear I’ve been feeling good – you guys know that. I’ve gained a few pounds back and yesterday I bought a pair of sexy heels. This morning I woke up, rolled out of bed with my messy hair feeling like a million bucks. I put on a pair of tight black jeans and my new heels, looked in the mirror and delighted in my curves – I’ve missed them. I feel my old fire returning but this time it burns along calm waters. I’m the old me mixed with the new me and it feels so GOOD!

You can stay true to yourself while you change. You can and should put yourself first. Don’t let people treat you like shit and don’t treat yourself that way either.

The only constant IS change. Take advantage of it.

Anyway, just my morning thoughts. I love you!

Coming Home

When I arrived to Asheville, I began looking for roommate situations on Craigslist and had just one meeting scheduled before I grew tired of responding to ads and trying to sell myself for a meeting with strangers. I decided to go another route and see what I might draw to me instead. I posted a “Housing Wanted” ad on Craigslist sharing some basics about myself and what I was looking for. I’ve felt like a magnet lately and had a hunch it might yield some good results.

I heard from Stan, as well as several others, who invited me to take a look at their extra bedrooms. The arrangement and rent sounded good, and his email seemed kind and sweetly considerate of his wife. I wrote back and we scheduled a meeting. It was the second place I was to look at on Saturday.

The first situation, the one where I responded to her ad, let me know that she rented the room to someone else. But we had a good phone conversation a few days prior, so we met for coffee anyway and totally hit it off. We even went salsa dancing last night. 🙂

That Saturday, Stan ended up being my first and only meeting. I had a good feeling about it, and with my recent insights I’ve been doing my best to recognize and to follow my intuition. I didn’t respond to anyone else who wrote me but I would, of course, if things didn’t work out. With an airbnb booked for the week, I had plenty of time.

I drove out to the suburbs (ten minutes from downtown) and met with Stan and his wife, Mella. They told me they were a conservative Christian family, but not bible thumpers. That they have a 19 year old daughter, and a 15 year old exchange student from Beijing living with them. That if I moved in, I’d be getting a family. They had a glow about them and I loved them immediately. I didn’t have to think about it – I was in and so were they. I moved in a few days later.

I moved back to the United States to be near family. I thought that maybe if I opened myself up and got the family energy flowing in my life, that perhaps I could start moving in the direction of having one myself – something I’ve always wanted deep down, but that I’ve been scared of, something that I’ve had no idea how to move forward with. It’s funny how things work out… This living situation certainly wasn’t what I was expecting, but it’s definitely what I’ve been needing.

Conservative Christians get a bad rap these days. They’ve been hijacked by the far right and so many of us (myself previously included) have our stereotypes, otherwise known as judgments, about them. But this is not the case… at least not in this household. They are some of the most open-minded, reasonable, and loving people I’ve met. On my first day, I was greeted by a bouquet of flowers on my desk along with a note and a $25 Starbucks gift card. When I texted them to say Thank You, the reply I got was Welcome Home!

Everything in the house is as natural and organic as our dynamic. I love the country charm of the ceramic signs around the house which say things like Pray Daily, and Prayer Changes Things, serving as reminders because I know that it’s true – regardless of religious orientation. I love that every time I walk in the door, I’m asked if I’m hungry. I love their connection as husband and wife, the palpable love that they share, and the way that it flows out to the rest of the family – myself included. I love that I can feel God’s presence all around me, all the time these days.

I’ve always looked for models to cultivate the qualities that I want in my own life and that is part of why I moved in. I pray that I may have even a drop of the family and romantic love that is so clearly present in this home. It’s funny because even though I’m single as single comes, I don’t feel it. I feel like I’m in love with someone, but I’m not sure who. 🙂

Tonight I made kitchari and all of us ate dinner as a family. They’ve never had it before but were excited to try something new and grateful to try my cooking. I even taught Mella to make ghee! They enjoyed learning about Ayurveda and they seemed to enjoy dinner as well.

As for me, I was grateful to have such warm company to share my favorite meal with. I am grateful to be welcome here and to be part of a healthy and peaceful family dynamic. I enjoy learning what all of this looks like. It’s never too late, and there’s always more to learn.

I love them. And I love You.

Thank You, God.