A number of years ago I went through a phase where I was craving an NDE (near-death experience). I did not want to leave my body permanently, but there was a desire to have more understanding about life and death, and I thought the best way to gain more understanding would be to actually have the experience of dying. I had read about near-death experiences and noticed that those who came back had a refreshed outlook on life, felt more spiritually awakened, lived life with more awareness, had a greater sense of purpose, and no longer feared death. [Read more…]
I legally changed my name a couple of years ago. It may have seemed hasty to onlookers, but I had been thinking of changing it for a number of years before I actually did so. The very first time I thought of changing my name, I wanted to change it as a way to distance myself from my family; I felt I didn’t fit into their world and that I should just create my own. But, I knew that wasn’t the right reason to change it, so I held back my impulsive nature.
I went on to spend months and years in spiritual communities where name changes were common. There was that person would try on a new name every year, some who chose a new name and stuck with it, and others who waited for a name given by the teacher, as an acknowledgment that they reached a new point in their evolution. Although the motives or methods for changing names varied, the idea that one could call themselves something other than the label they were given at birth appealed to me. I pondered names in those years but let it go until a time when I felt more inspired. [Read more…]
As the summer transitioned into autumn, I found myself falling into a bit of a slump. I was struggling over where I stood regarding my Expressive Arts Degree; it was difficult to get myself motivated, and I questioned whether I should stay with it or not. This came as quite of a surprise because I was so in love with my chosen path just a few months earlier. Spending July at EGS was one of the most inspiring things I’d ever done. I felt calm and grounded, yet excited and challenged at the same time. It was very fulfilling to be immersed in the expressive arts every day and surround by like-minded people, all while being held and inspired by the abundant beauty of the landscape. [Read more…]
As my friend Tara and I sat waiting in the hospital the other day, I noticed a man hobbling by on crutches. Trying not to sound too uncompassionate I expressed how nice it has been not to have needed crutches for such a long time. There was a period of a couple of years where both Tara and I were on and off crutches a number of times. Luckily our injuries never occurred at the same time, so we could at least help each other when others failed to show up for the task. We reminisced a bit about the struggles and pains of being immobilized. We sighed in relief that we both had two working feet.
I bought myself a small bouquet of lilies yesterday, an apologetic token for not being there for myself lately. Throughout life, but particularly during the last few years, I’ve learned that at the end of the day, the only person truly invested in my well-being is me. So why did I neglect myself lately? Because it’s the first time in a long time since I’ve tried to be in an intimate relationship with someone else. I’m not used to balancing my time with someone else in mind because I’ve been single for the last two years. I needed that time to focus on healing my body and my spirit from the effects of a difficult run with cancer. I also didn’t feel ready to jump back into something; I need to get into the habit of loving myself more before I could even think of being in another relationship.
In my previous relationships, meeting my needs usually took a back seat to the needs of the other. This is a pattern I noticed in myself, but I thought that since I had cultivated a considerable amount of self-love in these past years, I would not fall back into it. Well, unfortunately, in the short time that I have been with someone else, my pattern of giving in to what the other person wants, even when I know I shouldn’t, has shown up. [Read more…]
Recently I spent a week at “The Haven”, a retreat centre located on Gabriola Island. Gabriola is one of the Gulf islands nestled between the mainland and Vancouver Island. I love getting away to the islands for any reason; they are magical to me because anytime I visit one something shifts in my life. The Haven itself is a magical place. A place where people gather to improve themselves and the way they relate to others in this world. [Read more…]