PillowTalk: How To Beat the Game of Love

“Nobody wins in the game of love.”

This week I’m on a ROLL with some of the hardest lessons I’ve learned while playing the game of love. What is YOUR “win” in a relationship? What do you consider a “loss”? I delve into some of the most essential keys I’ve gathered in my experiences in intimate relationships. Enjoy, comment, share!

Goddess Nike

You can spend your whole life trying to figure it out without actually taking the chance to do it. But there is no “right time.” Instead, I’ve given you NOW. What will you do with it?

 ~Life

Today I found myself standing at my door with a grocery bag and a 24-pack of bottled water. As I stood at the door of my abode, I fumbled with keys while still trying to hold onto the case of water. I don’t know why, but something said, “Turn the knob.”

I did.

It opened.

I got it.


Too often we allow our unanswered how to postpone our doing the what.

But the hows are all figured out for our chosen way — when it’s for you, it’s for you. There is no promise of comfort. There is no guarantee of certainty. But there will be an indescribable, deep soul satisfaction that rises from within when we give our sacred YES to our unanswered questions.

If you keep asking questions about it, you are probably being called TO it.


I believe that Life begins to live through us the moment we allow ourselves to be moved beyond explanations. The moment we see the Mystery and take the leap anyway, echoing our Yes…Yes…Yes…breathing deeply…feeling totally…believing beyond proof…we enter a whole new world that our minds analyses and forward projections could have NEVER perceived because some things just have to be EXPERIENCED to be understood.


Whatever your it is: JUST DO IT. You won’t know the answer to how or why until you live into it.

Lover’s Anonymous: Epic Fail

Epic (adj.): grand in scale or character

Fail (n.): a grade not high enough to pass (an examination or test) OR (v.): to be unsuccessful in achieving (one’s goal)*

It doesn’t have to last forever to be beautiful. ~my mama

In fact, nothing does – last forever, that is. And so, if we are to gauge success by permanency and constancy, well then, life becomes the grandest of all “epic fails.”

And still, I sometimes find myself wondering if the ended (or altered) friendships, departed lovers and incomplete connections were due to some kind of inherent fault on my end.

But I know better, even if I don’t always feel what I know. And you do too, somewhere underneath layers of thoughts that run amok.

So here is a gift from me to you…with no explanation or proof…they are my offerings to you: 5 things I’ve determined from my own relational epic failures.

  1. Success is based on authenticity and responsibility, not lasting forever. It is not my job to “make it last,” but rather to be myself truly and fully, accepting the responsibility for whatever comes next, and shifting with integrity. This is my relational success.
  2. Let go quickly. Sometimes it feels impossible, but I’ve purposed within to QUICKLY release those with whom I am no longer relating. Neither of us is missing anything; we don’t owe it to anyone to grieve a parting. As Zora Neale writes, “…the mourning shouldn’t last a day longer than the grief.” And as Paulo Coelho says, “I give myself 3 days to grieve; after which, I politely ask sadness to go away.”
  3. Everything happens in cycles. Life keeps moving with or without me dragging my past along, and wearing it like a scarlet letter. More than likely, if there is something to be resolved or clarified, it will be without my pining, excessive deliberations or efforts – one way or another. Now, I trust Life.
  4. It’s not what I think. Literally. It just is. What’s going through my head is probably the FURTHEST away from the whole truth of the situation, even if I have concrete facts. The WHOLE truth is that the observable facts aren’t the only facts of the situation, AND facts in themselves don’t comprise any entire experience.
  5. Feel my feelings. I’ve experienced more internal reward from feeling my feelings without needing to place blame or shame than I ever have by “being right” or understood. Proving points yields no peace. All that ever matters is what my feelings are showing me about me right now.
  6. One day, it all makes sense. And this isn’t always an intellectual “sense.” But there has come a time, in EVERY ending, where I can feel the divineness of it all – no matter how difficult it was initially. And that makes me trust endings, and their associated feelings, from the beginning.
  7. Regretting endings is a waste of time. See number 6. 
  8. Connection does not mean contact. Just because I’m no longer in contact with someone does not mean we are no longer connected. Those who have cycled back into my intimacy have proven this time and again – there are synchronicities that are undeniably a result of something we don’t fully understand, although we’ve experienced it.
  9. What now? This is the only question that ever truly matters.

It’s not about never feeling an unpleasant sensation or being together forever, it’s about everything we’re experiencing: being, feeling, thinking, releasing, connecting, integrating…it’s about the WHOLE of it, not just what we can hold of it. We don’t own people or experiences: we are gifted them for a time.

And this is as it ought be.

Sometimes the greatest success is to “fail” epicly.

(You gotta do some living to give me an “Amen” on that one!)

Life Recipe: Anxiety

LIFE RECIPE: ANXIETY*

REST.

Yep…I’m talkin old school, non-electronic, completely analog, back-to-basics-style REST.

  • Read a book (or listen to one)
  • Make & drink tea on the stovetop (in a pot or kettle)
  • Take some herb
  • Go to the park
  • SLEEP.
  • Stare off into space

Story:

I come from a family of sensitive, high-energy women. This energy is best directed and circulated so that it doesn’t lead to excessive worry, anxiety and burnout. When I was a little girl, my grandmother had a set schedule with clear boundaries. She did not accept phone calls before 10 am. She had a ritual with her coffee. She chose work that complemented her skill set and desired lifestyle (childcare provider). And she usually did one thing at a time.

However, there were a few times I recall her saying to me,

“Sitdown chile, an’ rest your nerves.”

There was no WebMd then discussing the value of meditation, stillness or “unplugging.” Grandma was just wise with the wisdom presence gifts you. I never really understood why she commanded such, but NOW I do. She relished in quiet times. We were made to turn off all electronics and be quiet during storms. She said that, “God was doing His work.” **Deep smile**

What if we treated our awareness of anxiety and overwhelm as my grandmother treated storms? What if we simply decided to turn everything off, and be quiet until the storm passes, and allow the God of our understanding do Its work?

I’m blessed to have been taught – by example – such a simple yet impactful practice. I now pass it to you. It ain’t fancy or eloquent. It just works.

Be well and take GOOD care.

You won’t know how tired you are until you sit your ass down.

~ my grandma

*IN THIS POST, “ANXIETY” IS CHARACTERIZED BY THE PERVASIVE SENSE OF OVERWHELM, RESTLESSNESS & “GOTTA-GO-GOTTA-DO” ENERGY THAT SEEMS TO BE THE DRIVING FORCE OF U.S. SOCIETY.

The Last Day of My Life

If today were the last day of my life, I wouldn’t want a traditional obituary.

Who needs to know when I was born or what degree I earned in university, how many children I did (or didn’t) have and how many exes I’ve collected? These do nothing for no one – just another pebble to toss on the pile.

No.

I’d want to share the treasures of my heart, leave the way I lived: giving.

So…here goes:

  1. Love is all that matters. Not how hurt you’ve been or what “they say”…neither your fears nor your successes…all that will every matter is where you saw Love, felt Love, gave Love. I promise you – it’s the only thing that transforms.
  2. March to your own beat. As soon as you know your truest desire, ACT ON IT. Start with small consistent actions that speak your truth. You don’t have to tell anyone. You don’t need anyone’s permission. As the poet Rumi says: “What matters is how quickly you do what your soul directs.”
  3. Listen more than you speak. I suck at this one. With the time I have left, I will listen more to silence, nature, my lovers and loved ones, the sound of my fingers on the keyboard. There is beauty in asking with your undivided attention.
  4. Life is only as good as your questions. I was so consumed for the first 3 decades of my life with knowing the answer to so many things. Finally, I understand that my questions were often not deep enough. I would ask: “Does so-and-so love me?” when I really wanted to live the answer to “How does true Love feel?” You see? Ask the question. Live (into) the answer.
  5. All you have is NOW. Not yesterday, not tomorrow, not 3 years. If it means the world to you, DO IT NOW. SAY IT NOW. FEEL IT NOW. CHOOSE IT NOW. CHANGE IT NOW.
  6. Indecision shapes your life as much as choices. Whether you step up and decide what you will create, or wait for something to fall into your lap, your life will reflect your choice. And if you don’t like what you’re experiencing, choose something else.
  7. Fear isn’t real, but it will show you what is when you face it. If I lived my life facing one fear after another, I believe I would land exactly where I’m meant to be AS the person I decided to become when I chose to incarnate. Translation: if you don’t know what to do, find the fear and do what scares you. You will be pleasantly surprised.
  8. Always tell yourself the truth. Some of the biggest detours in my life have come from lying to myself. I’d try to make myself happy with things that didn’t resonate with my design or convince myself to stay in situations I’d want to leave. Telling myself the truth has been the scariest, most life-changing things I’ve done.
  9. Have more fun. I would laugh more…play more…relax more, and not take myself (and others) so damn seriously.

if i could tell you anything i would tell you this:

Live life presently: there is no better time than now. There never has been, there never will be.

Listen more than you look or touch or taste or smell or speak. And when you do speak, make sure that it is not only the truth, but true as well.

Learn what ‘chakras’ are and tend to them. Stand in the rain at least once a month; there are nations performing rituals as we speak to experience what we consider an “inconvenience.”

Sit your bare bottom on the ground, and allow Earth to grow in you.

Spend as much time as you can celebrating – for every and no reason at all. There’s always time for joy – an extra special treat, a free film, a longer-than-usual walk on an autumn afternoon, a surprise visit from a friend or a trashtalkin’ game of dominoes over ginger beer.

Wear your “special” clothes for “ordinary” occasions and see what happens. (I can’t give it ALL away).

Learn from children.

Laugh at yourself, at least once everyday. Eat good food, but don’t eat too much or even ‘enough.’ You may not be yourself when you’re hungry, but desire inspires and space is holy.

Believe in miracles.

Dance – everyone has rhythm.

Learn to swim and defend yourself, but avoid a fight at all costs. Learn to do much with little – needing little frees you up to BE more.

Know that the body never lies.

And whatever you do, take time to listen to your heartbeat daily; it will tell you things no physician or psychologist can tell you.

Breathe deeply … until your fingertips tingle. Enjoy the jiggle of parts once firm and accept the changing of the seasons –

Know that while you are forever, this moment isn’t.

Remember that what matters most isn’t the matter at all.

Make a mistake, on purpose, to rid yourself of the terrible myth that mistakes mean failure, or the failure is final. It will not be your end. Listen, it won’t.

The world is nothing but a mosaic of stories of missteps and misfits connected by a grace and love big enough to fit a galaxy.

And, you do belong here.

 

Poem by: Miel Adu

Artwork by: Greg Rivera “The Wise Woman”