Affirmation: I have an attitude of appreciation for all things.
The yoga class at Rex Wellness here in Cary had just begun when our teacher, Karin Johnson, invited us to "take an intention." She then suggested "appreciation." Gratitude had been coming to me lately as the intention for my practice. I am in a place of delightful bliss these last few weeks. It feels marvelous. It's Spring as I sit and write. The singing birds and flowering trees, bushes and plants have filled my ears with music and my vision with the color and miracle of new birth. Presently life holds the promise of a joy filled wedding celebration for that of my youngest daughter, Ellen and her sweetheart, Adam O'Sullivan. We have been preparing and planning for the warm welcome and entertainment of our family, dear friends and new family to be from all over the world. We have gifts, food, hugs and smiles ready and waiting. My spiritual director, Sister Judy Hallock, also invited me to "take an intention." This time it was to be for the upcoming celebrations and to hold it for the events and for all those who would be involved in the celebrations.
When I spoke with Sister Judy about the upcoming wedding I told her I was simply staying calm and allowing it to unfold in its own way. I am more than happy to be intimately involved in the support of the celebration but both Sandy and I recognize that this is Ellen and Adam's wedding, not ours. We feel our role is to help them make their dream come true, not to force our preferences upon them, even if we could. Sister Judy, however, changed my focus. An intention of sitting back and letting the events simply unfold was not enough. She suggested I hold the week and all those who were helping us celebrate "in Divine Light." I was ready for this guidance. I know about blessing events well before they begin. I've prayed for our Pink Ribbon Yoga Retreat, any workshops or classes I present, and all the communities in which I'm involved. I pray for the people individually and as a group. I pray for blessings and that the time spent is only to their benefit. I've done this for many many years. I seldom enter into an event in which I'm either responsible for or in which I'm simply a participant, without having held that event in prayer. Does it change how the event or the meeting goes? It changes it for me and I am sure I bring an attitude of joyful expectation rather than skepticism or worse, and that has to make a positive difference. Now, I needed to do the same for the wedding of two of my favorite people. They've been together for over fifteen years. My husband and I are overjoyed that they have decided to make this public commitment to one another and to their world.
When Karin suggested we take "appreciation" as our intention, I wondered how that would be different from "gratitude" so I decided to give it a try. Later that day NPR had an interview with a man who had developed a mechanical spoon that allowed people to eat who had Parkinson's disease or any other tremor illness. It was explained that people with that type of condition cannot feed themselves. I had never thought about that disability. Immediately I remembered my intention from my class and appreciated the fact that I wasn't faced with that challenge. Recently I had also heard of Non-24, a disorder affecting the totally blind. It's a sleep disorder with which they struggle because they can't tell the difference between day and night. I wondered what other things I take for granted that may be a challenge for another? My appreciation of the lack of struggle my life presently holds instantly surged. I thought of all the friends and relatives I know about and for whom I am holding in prayer and was again appreciative. Really, when I look around the world and see what so many people have to deal with, I am in awe of the blessings of my life. I have no reason to complain or to be ungrateful about anything. It seems appreciation and grateful easily go together and I just needed a boost and Karin's suggestion helped heighten my sense of gratitude.
By holding our upcoming celebrations in Divine Light I have found I have a heightened sense of appreciation and gratitude for these events and all the blessings I know will emerge during this time. I also expect the weather to be perfect. I expect there to not be any glitches or bumps in the actual event. I expect all the guests will behave appropriately and there will be complete harmony among everyone in the family. Just teasing! What has already happened because of my new intention is I have a peaceful, joyful heart. I am expecting the best and am at peace with whatever that may look like. I am writing this with an anticipation filled with the excitement of the union of Ellen and Adam and of the blessings that will emerge from the union of our two families.
Thank you, Karin. Thank you, Sister Judy. Thank you, Loving God for the gift of Divine Light. I fully appreciate it and already feel its presence pouring forth blessings on the upcoming weeks.