faith, future

This just in: These are the days that must happen to you

Brighter days ahead
Brighter days ahead

“These are the days that must happen to you.” ~Walt Whitman

We can’t be sure of any moment’s purpose as it happens. That’s why recording and reflecting on our thoughts and experiences is such a valuable practice. Now that I’ve had a number of years to collect and review my own stories of life as it’s unfolded, I’m finding that my faith in the universe, myself, and others is growing at an unprecedented rate.

In reflection, I understand the tough times. The disappointment, anger, and sadness, even the injustice, makes sense. I can see that it had to happen that way to lead me along the path meant for me. As Whitman says, those were the days that had to happen to me. And so are these. And so are the many days to come. With that perspective, hard times are easier to navigate. It’s easier to keep breathing.

Maybe you’re going through difficult terrain now. Maybe it’s hard to see any hope, light, or change ahead. I’ve had so many days like that. Days that stretched into weeks and months and years. But now, from where I am, I’m glad I kept going through the dark. I’m glad I didn’t give up. I’m grateful that I found a way to keep looking up and reaching. And I hope you will, too.

creativity, faith, story

This just in: The best stories have these two things

The garden of stories
The garden of stories

“Doubt is a question mark; faith is an exclamation point. The most compelling, believable, realistic stories have included them both.” ~Criss Jami

Our lives have both doubt and faith, especially in times of change. We’re worried about what might happen next, and we’re equally excited about the possibilities. We trust the process, and still wonder what we can do to help it along in the event of the slight chance that the process isn’t fine without a little encouragement from us.

Stories weave together the same way our lives do. Characters have doubt and faith. In the best stories the doubt gets the best of them and launches them into all kinds of sticky situations. No wonder stories resonate so deeply with us. They give us faith that if our favorite characters can overcome their circumstances, then so can we. Reading stories is an act of pure faith.

action, adventure, dreams, faith, moving, Washington

This just in: Move date for Washington, D.C. is set

D.C. - my new home city!
D.C. – my new home city!

And we’re set for our next adventure! Phin and I will hit the road on Wednesday to move to D.C. My plan is to stop halfway to rest and arrive in D.C. some time on Thursday. I’m abundantly grateful to my friends, Matt and Alex, whom I’ll be renting from as I get my feet under me and re-establish my life in nearly every way. The constants during this tough time are my amazing friends whose support of my wild ideas never waivers.

The Universe has a wild way of speeding you along the path once you find it. Just a week ago I had planned to be in Florida for another 2 months. I thought I had to stay because it would be safer to do a long-distance job search, let Phin heal in Florida, and secure a D.C. apartment for a few months from now. One by one, the universe knocked down every one of those obstacles I put in my own way. I learned it’s much easier to job search in D.C. if you’re in D.C. Phin’s neurologist said he was doing very well on his healing path and felt completely comfortable transferring his care to another neurologist in the D.C. area. Then Matt and Alex wrote that their former tenant just moved out and they were looking to have someone else move in.

There’s a Buddhist belief that every moment contains exactly the lesson we need exactly when we need it. And that is certainly true now. I need to trust that if I’m willing to take a step there will be safe ground there to support me, even if I can’t see it. It’s an enormous leap of faith to act when we are sure of the what and unsure of the how. It takes a strong belief in our own abilities to overcome obstacles and an equally strong belief in other people to support us when we are brave enough to ask for help. I don’t do either of these things easily, but I’ve learned I can change, that I have changed. Magic happens, and I plan to pay forward all of the magic I’ve received (and then some!)

courage, discovery, faith, fear, Life

Inspired: It’s okay to feel broken

Rocks grow in places that are crumbled
Rocks grow in places that are crumbled

“Be crumbled so wild flowers will come up where you are.” ~ Rumi

I know a lot of people who’ve had a tough year. Maybe you’re one of them. You feel a little broken by life, by the holidays, or maybe you feel a little broken and you’re not even sure why. Maybe someone you love is facing this reality right now. I came across this quote by Rumi yesterday in my reading and I think it’s an important one to keep close. Know this: perfection is a myth. Truthfully, we’ve all got small cracks, chips, and breaks somewhere in our lives. They aren’t always visible, but they’re there and there’s some comfort in knowing that we’re all on this imperfect journey together. So don’t be embarrassed or afraid or feel despair for the parts of you or the people you love that are a little crumbled. The flowers are on their way.

decision-making, dreams, faith

Inspired: Plant your dreams in faith and water them

From Pinterest
From Pinterest

Of course you have doubts. You second-guess yourself. You wonder about the intentions of others. You question your abilities and your choices. You are human, and you are a person of integrity who reflects, considers, and maintains curiosity. You always want to improve upon what you’ve already done. Doubt is going to be there. Work through it and learn. But please, don’t turn back. Don’t give up now. You’ve come too far and worked too hard to throw it all away. Modify, pivot, adjust, change, but don’t quit. Keep going. Doubt is like the rain. It’s necessary and healthy to question ourselves and others, but it doesn’t prevent the sun from having its chance to shine. It’s a cycle. Act accordingly.

celebration, change, creativity, failure, faith, success

Inspired: The Dance of Optimism is the Cha-Cha

From Pinterest
From Pinterest

“Optimist: Someone who figures that taking a step backward after taking a step forward is not a disaster. It’s the cha-cha.” ~ Robert Brault

Forward, back. Forward, back. This is exactly what happens whenever we try to build something. It’s the dance of trial-error-and-trial-again. This is true of everything I’ve ever done. Nothing has ever been a linear progression from 0 to 60. The fun is in learning to ride the wave. When the roller coaster pulls up beside you, hand over your ticket, grab a seat (I recommend the front one because you can see better!), buckle up, and learn.

choices, faith, inspiration

Inspired: Move Forward From the Gut

From Pinterest
From Pinterest

We have to live life moving forward though we can only understanding it looking back. The only way we can face this reality is through faith. Faith that what we feel is right, is right. We have to tune into our intuition even when we don’t have a rational explanation for what we’re doing in the moment. Let that intuition spark your action. Some people won’t get it. That little inside voice of yours might not get it either. There will be jeers and questions and criticism. Turn their volume down to zero and amp up the voice from your gut. Walk confidently, gracefully. Head up, smile wide, heart open. Calm, cool, collected. You’ve got this.

creativity, faith, opportunity, Second Step

Inspired: I’m Glad It Didn’t Work Out

b206b239425d46f5ad35131bec52da08Whenever something doesn’t work out in my favor, I don’t think of it as an opportunity lost but as a bullet dodged. This philosophy has never failed me, and over time it’s always proved to be true. I repeat this statement to myself: “The world has something better in mind for you. Be patient. Live. Have faith. Keep going.”