Posts Tagged 'fear'

Circles of change….

First thing this morning the light was full of depth and I sat here preparing to start work filled with peace.

The tides are different every day and today the spray is flying high in the wind out there. I sit listening and talking to troubled souls from all over the world as I watch the sea in it’s natural rhythm.

Every single grain of sand on the beach is washed and moved, every single day. It’s a natural circle and each grain changes every time, all flowing together.

Many telephone calls that come in are filled with anguish as change is resisted, battled and fought against. Folk are exhausted from hanging on to things, people, feelings and situations that do not balance with them. They want the tide to stop. They fear change. We have all been there, sometimes many times.

We all have tides washing over us and some days we roll with ease, some not so much. Bless the other grains who roll with love for us and with us. I love the grains on my life beach. ❤

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Perceptions….

I am currently halfway through writing a book about my internet dating adventures, thanks to the ‘spark’ from a lovely friend. This is throwing up all sorts of issues as you can imagine and the growing ‘tongue in cheek’ belief that I may never be asked out again.

The issues are interesting, because I am protecting the identity of all the characters, but where do you draw the line on how much you divulge? I have opted to keep it real and all is in there, including the unattractive aspects about myself and my moments of shame. It is apparently funny, and written with a light hand on the tiller according to those who have been privy to excerpts. It is not an unburdening of my soul, but a snapshot of what life can be like in internet dating land for women of a certain age. A publisher asked what demographic I was aiming it at and I replied ‘Are you kidding me on?’ I may need to brush up on my promotional skills.

I shared this current activity with my Mum and Dad on a recent visit and my Mum’s face lit up as she said ‘I do hope you are including the perfect cock story in your book?’ My Dad nearly choked on his lunch.

Writing this book takes me into the heart of ‘vulnerability land’ and that can became a sticking point. I have learned over the years to write and get out of the way of myself, because time and again I would write and be ‘reading’ it at the same time. That doesn’t work I found, as judgement comes in and my insistent critical inner voice is very loud indeed. So I write without thinking and just let the words fall onto the page.

This book is about me with real life events, so I have been facing fear as I sit at my laptop each day. Fear of judgement, not being enough, not being worthy and basically writing a load of stories that no-one would feel inclined to read. Hello fear.

The last thing I want to do is have it come across like a modern day advert, or some social media posts that we are all subjected to. You know the ones: beautifully attired people fresh from a full nights sleep, just off trekking in the Himalayas, while feasting on pancakes made from fresh goat’s milk, collected as the dew still nestles on the mountain sides and the children are in hand made crocheted hats…..you get my drift. This had to be real for me to do it. So here’s the reason I am quiet and daily beating down fear. If this ‘fear bashing’ translates into my appetite being subdued then I am ahead of the game. Now where did I put my crocheted hat?

Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms — to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way ~ Viktor E. Frankl

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I bobbed out yesterday to spend a bit of time at my soon to be new berth. Lynn’s lovely home is a treat to be in and as soon as I logged off from work I shot over there like a bullet out of a gun. As I rounded the corner there was a horse and pony grazing on the green opposite. It’s Easter holidays here and the children were watching in delight.

Lynn and I had a great time planning my move and where things will go next weekend. Her home is full of thoughtful touches and her care continued as she suggested a desk in the sitting room window. I can work, write and look outside at the green, the sky and life. That keeps work out of my bedroom and I think this will add to my inner peace.

I sailed out of there into Morrison’s to do some grocery shopping and when I came to pay I discovered that I had forgotten my purse. So I went back home, returned to Morrison’s, paid for my shopping and then walked back up the hill again. That’s when feelings started to rise up. As Sarah and I sat nattering and eating our dinner together last night I wept. I am upset about change again, angry at our landlord for not seeing the situation that he has created and I woke up this morning still thoroughly out of sorts. In this line of work you are front line and can’t hide. So I tried to ‘park’ how I felt and work anyway. This plan failed and my lovely colleagues stepped in and hands were held out with support.

I can handle the practicalities of the move, yet the emotions are a different thing and have got a wee bit tangled up. I am scared of hurt, of things going awry, of having to deal with goodness knows what, so I am not allowing myself to feel hopeful about this change.

As one colleague said this morning ‘Jane, lean on me, I am here, for goodness sake lean’. So I leant. Not my normal stance, but hey it’s time for change. Change happens all the time and if I can lean into this one and melt into each moment, then my attitude stays balanced. It is what it is and I am surrounded by loving support. Letting go of any expectations, including fear filled ones, is lovingly graceful. I also get to see Mum and Dad this weekend and to drive a hired van. Such fun. Ohh, and I have booked a manicure, after all self nurture needs to be practical too doesn’t it?

Light, dark and many degrees of shade….

(Garry Wilkes)

Trent & Mersey Canal after sunset (Garry Wilkes)

A thoughtful friend sent these photographs across of the Trent & Mersey canal this evening, so I could ‘share’ in his walk. I was tucked up at home with Mum and Dad, with Mum and I knitting like the clappers, because I was simply too weary for anything else. Bless my parents for their safe mooring. I received a message from Emily recently asking if I had time to knit her a waterfall cardigan. I jumped at the chance with absolute delight and when ‘us girls’ had some time together we had great fun choosing wool. Em was seven when she asked me not to make her any more hand knitted garments, no matter how trendy I made them look….I have been waiting fifteen years for this request and I am bubbly inside just thinking about it. There is love going into every stitch.

Anyhoo, back to the theme of this post.

I blossom in light, think in light, work in light and live in light. I have learned that fear kills light and have developed a number of ways of dealing with adversity and life’s tumbles. Holding onto light weaves through all of them.

When a soul is stuck in the dark of fear, we can shine our light and flow love to them, but the darkness will remain until they can work their way through it. If you find your light dimming then sometimes your only choice is to step away.

In the aftermath of a different step over Easter, a creative idea formed today with a business plan flowing from it. Mum and I went out exploring in the afternoon sunshine and discovered some rather interesting premises. As today drew to a close a meeting was arranged and things are starting to fall into place. I need a change and action, together with synchronicity, will bring this forth as it is meant to be.

Life’s canal is flowing and I can feel the warmth of sunshine on my boat.

(Garry Wilkes)

Trent & Mersey Canal in the evening sunshine (Garry Wilkes)

Life’s twinkly, sparkly gifts….

sunlight-73207_1280

As I sit working on the support service this morning it is a mild Autumnal day in North Wales. My front door is wide open, and although the breeze is quite strong, it is lovely to just peacefully sit and reply to the messages asking for help coming in over the ether.

The front of my little place is all glass and right now I have a reflection in it from the kitchen window behind me. My kitchen window looks out onto the courtyard and trees and the image sparkling on my front glass is the sunlight coming through the leaves and twinkling right in front of me. In the afternoons these twinkles play out across my kitchen slate floor and it’s magic to watch.

Me being me, I see this beautiful display of nature as an analogy for life.

Time and time again on the service, I talk to our clients about seeing the gifts in every connection, especially when they are beating themselves up because something has ended badly. Life can be very messy indeed, but there are gifts within. It’s about gently helping people to gain confidence in their life steps. I do not see things as right or wrong, or as mistakes (good and evil are two different things entirely), but as life’s flow without labels, measurement or judgment. That’s loving and being loving to ourselves is right up there as an important thing to so. If we can be loving to ourselves, then we can flow love to others. Taking forward life’s gifts gives a self awareness that makes future decisions simpler. For it is all about awareness and common sense, rather than making decisions that are fear based. There is a huge difference. If you make a decision/action because you do not want a certain outcome, then that is fear based. If you make a decision/action, because something is not sitting right within you, then that is made from awareness, not fear. It allows life to flow along, because you are not trying to control it. You are just setting your boundaries on what does, or does not, sit right for you.

I read a cracking expression the other day…I love it. ‘If it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck and waddles like a duck….it’s a duck!’ If something, or someone, is not sitting right within you, pay attention, it’s your twinkly lights from behind trying to tell you something.

Reflecting and capturing the gifts from what has passed is not looking backwards, it’s taking the twinkly, sparkly light of life’s gifts forward. It also helps you to live without fear, just simple awareness and that is a very loving thing to do.

Stories, love, fear, acceptance, control and ‘letting go’

Em's latest painting

This painting is one of Emily’s latest and I love how her creative journey is expanding and developing. I delight in the messages and ‘Skype’ conversations that fly between us. We trust each other implicitly and bounce ideas and creations off each other at each stage, with much loving encouragement. Also, with helpful advice, laughter and cries of ‘Time for a hot chocolate….mini marshmallows with that?’ ‘You betcha…’. Her painting perfectly illustrates this blog post, which has been rumbling in the background for some time and now sees the light of day.

All our lives we have a ‘story’ running through us and our ‘story’ builds momentum as we live each day. Through the beliefs and words the ‘story’ tells us, we take our steps and make our choices. The ‘story’ is a mishmash of our childhood, our beliefs about ourselves, our experiences, how others see us and how we treat ourselves and others. It’s no wonder self nurture, healing and therapies are becoming so popular.

I work with souls who are struggling every day as they try to make sense and edit, or re-write, their ‘stories’. We are all doing this every single moment of every single day. We are bound to get weary and lost sometimes, as things get muddled and complicated.

In loving simplicity, my heart feels that we approach everything from two foundations; one out of love and the other from fear.

One of nature’s laws that we can change things by making our own choices, can be daunting to a lot of souls.

Life and people do not ‘do’ things to us.

We can change so much by editing our ‘story’ and the words we tell ourselves. With love we can look at a situation, or how someone is reacting, and choose, edit, tweak and change how we react to it. Then our thinking, feelings, words and actions flow from that reaction. We choose how we weave this into our ‘story’.

Pausing to reflect on the ‘why’ is self nurturing. Stepping forwards with love and kindness flows love to all concerned. Our personal responsibility is to our own ‘stories’.

Love to me is ever flowing. It is loving to ‘let go’ and accept how other souls flow for they too have their own ‘stories’.

It can be frightening to ‘let go’ and see where life’s flow takes us. There are so many things that are done because ‘control’ is a motivating force and that springs from fear.

‘Letting go’ is loving.

Flowing from love, trusting, moving forwards, working, being kind, taking responsibility for my ‘story’ and nurturing my open heart have all brought me to North Wales in the middle of this Summer. A totally new area for me with no previous life links, or memories at all. I had no idea why at the time, it just felt instictively good for my ‘story’ to settle here.

Days have unfolded in a beautiful setting as I nest happily in my little home. New friendships, laughter, a kind landlord, magic moments, work, family and friends visiting and a growing love for this land have all woven into my ‘story’ with a loving richness.

Now I have a beautiful soul who holds my face in his hands and says ‘I love you Jane’. As I am learning his ‘story’, he is learning mine.

Loving acceptance.

My heart is full of gratitude for the new threads weaving into my ‘story’, as I now know the ‘why’ for coming here.

What is real and the kindness of strangers…..

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This photo was taken on Wednesday night, from the top of one of the mountains that nestle the valley, where I have chosen to put down roots and make the next chapter of my life. I have found a little apartment in a 17th century converted coach house, on an estate and working farm, in the depths of rural North Wales.

I am aware, as one of life’s ‘cliff leapers’, that I may not always have all my ducks in a neat row, but I have faith and trust in what is meant to be. I was drawn here, (never having been to the area before), and as soon as I drove over the mountain range and saw the valley stretching out before me, with the little medieval town in the middle, my soul spoke the words ‘You are home’.

My new home

With much gratitude to the loving support I have had, I came into land last Saturday and a few things happened in quick succession. My original choice of apartment felt all wrong as I unpacked my car and stood in the middle of the main room. My warm spirited landlord caught on very quickly and I was moved to another apartment on the estate. As I spruced the place up and settled in my laptop died, my phone struggled with any mobile signal at all, the Wifi signal was faint (that is being kind) and nothing electrical in the place worked. I have not collected my belongings from David’s yet, so I had very little that was familiar around me. The care agency work I was assured was a doddle to get into, is anything but, and I awoke the next morning to a cold feeling of ‘Oh what have I done…’.

OK, I thought, this is fear and I will acknowledge it, but not sink into it. I have been stopped in my tracks for a reason, but I am very definately in the right place. The fear is not real, what has gone before is not real, for it is in the past, and my imaginings on what might happen next are not real either.

What is real is what I tell myself and how I tackle this. I am capable and I have my smile..I can climb mountains.

My landlord on various visits has sorted my sparkly clean washing machine, which I can now set the dials on and start with a ball point pen…he’s ordered me a new button. The oven is now functioning (it had a dicky timer) and is sparkly clean. My laptop is fixed and I have made friends with the friendly man in the computer shop in the town and a lovely lady who runs a cafe nearby. Rachel lent me her laptop and let me sit in her cafe for hours on end as I job hunted. I have sussed the water timer and I can have hot, deep soaks in a sparkly clean bath. The sparkly clean theme now runs throughout my whole place and it made my landlord smile when I texted him a friendly warning to wear shades to combat sparkliness when he next visited. He is also buying me a Wifi booster. I am starting to get to know my neighbours, as there are forty odd places all rented out on this estate. Some are in the main hall and others in the coach house, stable block and assorted cottages and farm buildings dotted about.

Midweek, a visit to my Mum and Dad, who now live less than an hour away, was much needed. Mum got my washing done, fed me, sat me down to watch an escapist film and sent me back home with all sorts of goodies. That was real.

The job hunting has clarified something for me and I think it is based on all the blessed forms to be filled in and hoops to be jumped through…I am a self employed lass at heart. So I have created some handmade cards and started advertising myself as a ‘Home Service’…think Mary Poppins. Anything from cleaning to decorating, right through to cooking and baby sitting. I had a think you see and what is real are the things that I can do right here, right now. I can do accounts and finances, but why would anyone let me loose on those when I am in a foreign country and I am an unknown? If I start by being of service; work, smile, gain trust, talk to folk and get to know those in this farming community, then I can expand my services.

With the kindness of strangers; my cards are being handed out, helpful tips are being shared (along with some much needed local knowledge), decorating work is being promised, I was given a yummy piece of chocolate cake lovingly made by a neighbour’s young daughter last night, I have been gifted a beautiful rose bush for my patio, along with a thoughtful lavender plant (they are alongside a pale pink geranium from my Mum), friendly greetings are called out as I go about my daily tasks, invitations are being issued for coffee, dinner, a visit to the top balcony on the coach house (the views are breathtaking), advice for joining local business groups and I have been driven up one of the mountains to see the valley from there. Kindness is flowing….

What is also very real here are the views from several five bar gates. I can see the cows and sheep in the fields, each afternoon I can hear the cows in the wooden barn opposite me, hear the fountain playing through my kitchen window and each evening I watch the swallows flying in formation and calling to each other as they cool off in the evening breeze, just before the bats start to fly in the dusky evening sky.

I am home.

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Jane Sturgeon

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