I have been blessed with approximately 1,350,636,432.53 seconds so far. Today, as I celebrate my birthday, I have an opportunity to reflect on what I want the next 1,350,636,432.53 seconds to be like!
I have to admit: this year has been very, very challenging in many different ways. One thing has become even more clear to me: focusing on our strengths, on what is working and on our many blessings, allows for the tough times to be more "endurable". Challenges don't go away because we are grateful; they just become meaningful in the context of gratitude!
Focusing on me, and me alone, continues to be "my growing edge". Writing this blog was just as uncomfortable as it was eye-opening. I questioned the wisdom of talking about me, my birthday and my reasons for gratitude. But, I guess, the beauty of moving forward in my 40's is that I become more and more willing to show up in the world just as I am, warts and all!
As my own, personal "new year" gets underway, I decided to celebrate by writing down the notes from my gratitude journal, written on my special day. I am deeply grateful to and for:
- My mom and dad, who with all their seeming "flaws" have taught me so much about love, about trust in Life, about who I ultimate can become.
- My husband, friend and companion. His gentle nature, patience and unconditional love for me have sustained me against fear, cynicism, hopelessness and arrogance. He continues to be the soft place where God touches my heart in good times and tough times.
- My daughter, who at 8 years old has taught me more than anything or anybody in my entire life! Her determination, strength, resolve and confidence, have allowed me to discover the same qualities in me. Loving her has taught me that by opening our hearts, we become the spot where love flows through first, thus blessing us in the process.
- My playgroup tribe sisters, four women who know me in ways that I was afraid to show anyone before. For the last 8 years, these women have become as much part of me as my own family. They have honored the secret code of this circle of women who are willing to see me through anything, in sickness and in health, for richer and for poorer, for champagne or for beer!
- My body, that despite the foolishness of younger years, continues to bring me unmeasurable joys: the pleasure of my child's kiss, the taste of a ripe mango, the sound of Pink Martini or the comfort of a friend's hug.
- My deep and abiding connection with God, expressed in so many forms: the laugh of a baby, a beautiful sunset, the taste of watermelon or the smell of clean laundry!
- The availability of all sorts of books and my ability to read them. The gift of literacy is one I could never, ever take for granted!
- The amazing sight of a clear blue sky in Seattle. When the clouds part, there's no other place on Earth that can take your breath away like the Pacific Northwest.. at least for me!
- My Ipod! I absolutely love the way I can relax, learn, meditate, work out or simply dance my head off at the touch of a button!
- All the new and amazing people that my coaching career has brought to me! My classmates, my online friends. In this journey of following my heart as a parent coach and ScreamFree consultant, I have been touched by the wisdom,kindness and support of some amazing and generous women: Lara, Wendy, Lynne, Dori, Michele Borba, Marjie, Amy, Karen and Susan. The list is long.. so please forgive me if this late at night, I missed adding your name here... A big, heartfelt, soul-full thank you for the many ways you have touched my life!
- For the opportunity to live in a country, the United States of America, that although a "work in progress", has given me the chance to be what I was born to be!
Happy New Year to Me!