While talking with a friend the other night, I was overwhelmed with gratitude. It felt bright and warm like stepping into the sun after being in an over air conditioned room for too long. My friend is a writer too, a soul sister to be sure. She is older than me, with children and grandchildren, but our dreams are the same and our journey ever so intertwined. When I am frustrated or lonely for inspiration, she is there. My friend.Friendship is the greatest gift we ever give to another person, yet sometimes we find ourselves in the vacuum of life and it feels like work or just one more thing taking up the time that we don’t have left in our day. I hate that pressured feeling. The feeling of “have to.” Whether it’s in my work, around the house or in my relationships. It’s steeped in ego and only speaks of scarcity.Sometimes, when I feel that pressure of items not checked off my “to do” list, I stop myself and focus on the word “abundance” and the fact that I truly believe that everything happens in God’s perfect timing. Then I exhale and continue on. I want to notice, really see, the abundance in each and every day, every moment and every loved ones’ face but it takes practice.
Recently, I came to an understanding with my body that exercising is an absolute necessity. I now enjoy going to the gym. No really, I do. Another dear friend of mine teaches kick boxing at our gym and we also attend Zumba classes together which are a blast! Both classes are heavy cardio, which demand that you effectively breathe lots of air in and out, very quickly if you wish to survive either class. For whatever reason, I often find myself holding my breath. In light of the fact that breathing is the most natural un-thinking thing we do as human beings; I over think it!
Halfway through a class, I end up turning bright red and sweating profusely so much so that when I run errands after the gym and don’t touch base with my husband, he fears I may have passed out in class and pictures me surrounded by women in skimpy workout clothes shaking their heads at my limp body lying on the floor and saying, “She was so young, if only she breathed more often.”
So as I workout, I try to make myself more aware of my breathing as to not become totally heat exhausted. Then, it suddenly dawns on me that I am not exercising in “abundance.” I obviously have some strange fear that there is not enough air in the room or less faith that I can follow the instructor and breathe at the same time. Why? Because despite my best efforts, like everyone else, God-fearing or not, we succumb to “there is not enough for everybody” rather than “because of everybody, there is enough.”
It’s all fear, a lack of love in some way, shape or form. I am familiar with all this, as in my writing, when I momentarily freak out and worry about not having enough time or taking too much time, to finish my book or other projects.
I am so glad that I have lived enough to know how incredibly off base all of that nonsense truly is in comparison to what we are all capable of if only we commit ourselves to what is possible. There is enough.
“Abundance” is my one word meditation and prayer to God everyday for myself and for all those that I love. It’s my simple way of telling myself “I can go on,” “I will get there and I am doing just fine.”
Everything, of course, is easier said than done and sometimes “abundance” is elusive, so I have to start with “gratitude.” I begin by counting all the ways I am blessed. Blessed with a loving spouse, amazing friends, a project I love working on, the ability to exercise, fresh air to breath (sigh), food on my table and a heart and mind that is open and ready to receive.
The next time you speak to a friend, complete a project or just enjoy a great movie, stop for a moment and bask in the glow of your appreciation for whatever it is, and you will find with just a small dose of self-awareness, that you have landed yourself somewhere between gratitude and abundance.
“Autumn is wisdom, the breath between what was and what lies ahead.”
J. C. Beichner