To just feel free….

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I’m celebrating my birthday this week
with some gentle hikes and deep breaths and easy togetherness
with ones that I love
and a gift I’m giving myself that is so simple
(like this,  my word for the year)
that it helps knead out the strain I sometimes carry
over being another year into this thing
that I sometimes feel I’m doing rather badly.

Life.
It’s such a big deal.
And I want to do it wholehearted.
So I’m giving myself a wide generous spread of permission
to make enough mistakes;
(you almost can’t make enough,  you know)
and to dance badly
and more,  please,

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 to love out loud-er,
to ask for crazy stuff,
to not take it on heavy when someone calls my art “my work”
(I know it’s my play)
and to forgive like my happiness depends on it,

to feel free,  in fact,
to give away more than seems reasonable,
to show up even when I’m gimpy
(maybe especially when I’m gimpy)
and to believe that Life is also sweet on me.

blog feel free
To feel free
to just
feel free.

To help celebrate another year of living,  I’m pouring some handwritten love
through my etsy shop this week

…..if you want to order one of these for yourself
or as a gift for someone else,   this gardener will be honored to help
do some intuitive soul-tending in that beautiful heart of yours:)
Because I love sharing the journey with you.

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I want to sing like the birds sing,
not worrying about who hears
or what they think.”
-Rumi

~

52 candles….

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It’s my birthday this week and I’m plunking
52 fresh candles in my lemon blueberry cheesecake,
deep down ridiculously glad to be alive in 52 (new)
glad and grateful ways:

~for fresh skies and new trails to hike,
~the soul sweetness of being with safe people,
~the resistance that enables us to fly,
~the grace to listen slow,
~wiggle room….the beauty of spaciousness,
~creating art for the simple joy of it,  and
~clean libraries,

~for our fascinating weaknesses and imperfections
~good coaches and coaching,
~for healthy intimacy….the real stuff that isn’t illusion,
~audio books when my hands are happily covered in paint,
~golden moments in the sun,  warm and wrapped in light.
~the large,  friendly quiet of the early morning,
~the sleepy sighs of dogs plopped and snuggled
at my feet,
~the hoo hoo hoooo of an owl in the woods,

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~when sometimes into life’s overwhelm come soft days,
thickset with grace,
~sea kayaks and coppertone air and  summertime dreaming,
~those times when you feel like a bird with a big song,
~the first flutters and tenderlings of Spring,
~the shepherd psalm,

~song lyrics and movie lines that make your heart leap,
~thank you’s….all the creative ways that appreciation
gets expressed,
~the beauty and honor of Native American culture
and each baby step toward restoration of these noble people,
~how “the Lord lives among pots and pans”  (Teresa of Avila)
~Melody Beattie and Brene Brown and their brilliance shared,
~ poetry and prayer,

~for the cool breeze of friends who are shade in the swelter
and help to stir my dreams vivid and shining,
~the simple beauty of spending less than I make,
~the poignant power of well chosen words,
~every laugh that shakes my children’s bellies,
~that we are not our pain,  not our problems,
and there are exciting,  interesting things in store for us
and  we get to  cooperate with the universe by taking good,
tender loving care with ourselves,

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~the big heart-massage and brain de-clutter of morning pages,
~hot steamy baths,
~the whoosh of satisfaction when all the gardens tucked in for a long winter’s nap,
~cutting into a really juicy  lime,
~the beauty of timely support,
~the gorgeousness of vulnerability,
~the way the pain and loss of tragedy reminds me to love out loud,
to say it,  write it,  grow it,  guard it,  live it,  show it
and dance all over the fear that I’ll be rejected or look a fool
….I’d rather put my love out there than hide it away unexpressed,

~for the freedom to get hopping mad,
~the gift of solution,
~the joy of just turtling along,  free to mosey,
and also the thrill of zooming
and that we mostly get to choose,
~the sweetness of new season,  new rhythm,  new dance
with the same partner,
~the deliciousness of coming uncaged,
~for the gnarly,  stretchy stuff….that life without tension
goes shallow,

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~people who are generous with a smile,
~learning to forgive ourselves for what we didn’t know
before we learned it,
~for how much easier life gets when we accept the apologies
that we never got,
~sunny stone walls to lean against warm
when icy winds blow,
~after-storm clarity
~and the deep breath of relief when we let love come near
our unloved places
and get some healing done.

~for naps and sweet, sweet sleep when it comes
~and for another year to sing into the wind
that life is precious,  love is treasure,  time is currency
and it is pure gift
to be here now.

There they are…..the 52 new candles flickering in my heart this year.
I’m so grateful to be able to serve up a slice to you,  friend.
Love and thanks for coming around to help me celebrate.
You make my life richer than I can say.

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“I decided that the most subversive,  revolutionary thing I could do
was to show up for my life
and not be ashamed.”
-Anne Lamott