receiving

Terre de Vendicari Sicily Italy 2.JPG

Receiving

the awakened spirit
bravely leans into
the moment’s softness

the hungry soul
opens and allows
others’ love to flow in

the tender heart
receives
the gift of wholeness

 

This post was inspired by reading Healing is Mutual in Rachel Naomi Remen’s Kitchen Table Wisdom. She writes about a doctor who follows his intuition and breaks with his training to pray in his office with an elderly woman patient in the final stages of cancer. Rachel describes how the women touched the doctor’s cheek in appreciation and how that simple act of grace was a  powerful gift for the physician, giving him strength and recommitting him to his healing work.

I love how Rachel inspires me to listen to the wisdom inside, deep down where my heart beats softly. I like the way she invites me to be vulnerable and courageous in acting on what feels right, even though it may be different from what I would usually do, or what I might think is ‘professional’ or aligned with others’ expectations. I appreciate how she helps me see what’s possible when I show up 100% for what’s happening – and the beauty of others’ gifts flowing into my life.

* I took this photo at Terre di Vendicari in Sicily, Italy this past summer. I chose it because of the way these horses seemed to give and receive from each other.

the world that awaits you

flowerbud cropped

Last week I shared a poem I wrote about a new beginning. Here is another poem about new beginnings written by John O’Donohue, which I treasure – not only for the beautiful message that resonates deeply within me, but also for the lovely way that it came to me. After finishing an 8-week Mindfulness by Design virtual series with my colleagues Katiuscia Berretta and Annahita Varahrami, and as we were embarking on the new year of 2018, Kat sent this gift to me.

I believe in beginning again, over and over. I see fresh starts in moments throughout the day, each new day awakening, the perspective that a trip can bring, a new  opportunity to make a difference, meeting a new found friend, in flower buds opening to the sun…

I am inspired by the invitation of courage and energy and openness that comes to me through this poem.

For a New Beginning
By John O’Donohue

In out-of-the-way places of the heart,
Where your thoughts never think to wander,
This beginning has been quietly forming,
Waiting until you were ready to emerge.

For a long time it has watched your desire,
Feeling the emptiness growing inside you,
Noticing how you willed yourself on,
Still unable to leave what you had outgrown.

It watched you play with the seduction of safety
And the gray promises that sameness whispered,
Heard the waves of turmoil rise and relent,
Wondered would you always live like this.

Then the delight, when your courage kindled,
And out you stepped onto new ground,
Your eyes young again with energy and dream,
A path of plenitude opening before you.

Though your destination is not yet clear
You can trust the promise of this opening;
Unfurl yourself into the grace of beginning
That is at one with your life’s desire.

Awaken your spirit to adventure;
Hold nothing back, learn to find ease in risk;
Soon you will be home in a new rhythm,
For your soul senses the world that awaits you.

 

* I took this photo of a peony growing in my backyard. You can see this same flower in full beautiful bloom. 

This Precious Moment

Guzelcamli Turkey.JPG

This Precious Moment

I look into your eyes;
a deep well invites me in.

I listen to your words;
their syllables envelop me.

I touch your presence;
a palpable energy showers me in light.

Illuminated, you leave me curious.

What awakens your spirit?
What makes your heart sing?
What do you love more than anything?

Here. Now. Together.
We live in this breathing, precious moment.

One of the gifts of my job is that I meet amazing people. Truly amazing people.

One of them is Katiuscia Barretta. We met through the Mindfulness@IBM community that I started in 2015. She was instrumental in growing our community and creating awareness of the value of mindfulness in the workplace. She wrote a series of blogs about the neuroscience of mindfulness and made connections with the qualities of working in agile ways and applying design thinking. We led four different 6-8 week mindfulness series during 2015 and 2016, and we are at it again right now.

Part of Kat’s approach is to close each week’s session with a short inspirational reading, usually a poem. She introduced me to some wonderful poetry (such as There’s a Hole in my Sidewalk). And, she invited me to share my own poetry. One week we came up short and I was inspired to write something.

This poem was inspired by practicing mindfulness with Kat and my colleagues at work.

 

* I took this photo from Dilek National Park in Guzelcamli, Turkey (which has a view toward Samos, Greece).