Archive of ‘celebration’ category

Bring It On!

Those who will not slip beneath
the still surface on the well of grief

turning downward through its black water
to the place we cannot breathe

will never know the source from which we drink,
the secret water, cold and clear,
nor find in the darkness glimmering
the small round coins
thrown by those who wished for something else.

~David Whyte
The Well of Grief

 

I’m no stranger to grief.

When I was 30, I was devastated by a sweeping cascade of losses.  In a 3 month period, I lost a pregnancy, my marriage, my home, my ability to handle managerial responsibilities as a hospital department director, my position in society and all the dreams of the life I thought I was building.

The two years following those losses were as transformational as they were challenging.  I call them “the years of tears” because I never knew when I would be overcome with waves of grief.  

One of the many gifts I received from those years was the ability to fully and unapologetically grieve and emerge with insights and treasures – like the  ‘source’ and the ‘small round coins’ in David Whyte’s poem.   Another gift I received was the ability to hold sacred space for another’s grieving.

In the last 18 months I’ve experienced another series of losses (the end of a 20 year marriage, loss of property, wellness and dreams) which culminated in my son’s departure for college.   

I know many of you reading this have children who have recently headed off to college or married.  While college and marriage are life changes to be celebrated – I also know there’s a kind of grief for the parents.  In my case, I knew I’d feel the loss of my son’s presence and my role in his life deeply.  

So I prepared.

I organized my life to allow for the time I would need in order to dive fully into it and move through to the other side.  Instead of trying to carry on business as usual: seeing clients, teaching classes, giving keynote addresses…. I drastically reduced my commitments for 6 months.  For the 3 months prior to taking my son to college I kept only the absolutely necessary items on my agenda in order to be fully present for the experiences of high school graduation, Olympic Swim Trials, packing and moving.  I also allowed myself the time to rest, walk with friends, cry, journal, cry, pray, cry, dance, cry, sleep, cry and – when I simply couldn’t handle any more….binge-watch Netflix and cry ☺

For the 3 months after dropping him off at school I scheduled myself to travel and lead workshops and retreats interspersed with time for resting and healing.  In fact I’m writing to you from my friend Britt Steele’s YogaFarm where I’ve spent 2 weeks hanging out with goats, donkeys, horses and golden retrievers; eating veggies from the garden, resting, doing yoga, dancing and leading a weekend retreat.  

I’m telling you all of this because I can’t find many examples in our culture of ways to take care of ourselves when we are grieving a life transition like this.  What I know in my bones is that diving in and fully feeling grief is actually more effective and efficient than putting on a happy face and moving on too quickly.

I also know, that having allowed for deep grieving, I’m suddenly feeling ready to move on to the next phase of my life.  It’s such a great feeling that I wanted to share one of my favorite songs to dance to when I’m at the end of grieving and ready to BRING IT ON!  Hope you enjoy the music and that you’ll dance along with me ☺

 

 

Music:  Bring It On by Jana Stanfield http://www.JanaStanfield.com

Bring it on!
Deb

Two Secrets to Surviving Chaos

I’m going to cut to the chase.

In my community and in my family, there’s been a lot of chaos in the last few weeks.

So I thought I’d share the two most powerful tools I have for surviving times like this.

Surrender
Surrender gets a bad rap because people think it means ‘giving up.’ But the kind of surrender I’m talking about means letting go of the way you think things ‘should’ be going, releasing all your frustration and fear, and aligning yourself with Divine Will.

I learned the following petition from Robert Fritchie (who teaches a course on how to heal with Divine Love at http://www.WorldServiceInstitute.org) and I use it often:

“With my soul, I accept Divine Love and surrender my will to the Creator’s Will.  I acknowledge (state the problem here) and ask that the source of this (problem) be released and corrected with Divine Love according to the Creator’s Will.”

Dance

Dancing helps move all the fear, frustration, anxiety, worry, confusion and anger out of my body  – which makes true surrender possible.

Here’s the playlist I used today.  My best advice is to put this music on, let it move you, and then at the end…when you’re all danced out…. lie on the floor and surrender.

 

Playlist

Blessings of peace and comfort,
Deb

Light in the Darkness, and Green in the Holiday Treats

Sunday, December 21st is the solstice. Winter solstice – or longest night of the year – in the Northern Hemisphere and Summer Solstice – or longest day of the year – in the Southern Hemisphere.

The term solstice comes from the Latin word solstitium, meaning “the sun stands still.” That’s because on this day in December, the sun reaches its southern-most position as seen from the Earth. It seems to stand still at the Tropic of Capricorn and then reverses its direction.

Since I live in the northern hemisphere, I will be celebrating by attending a candlelight meditation, gong and yoga nidra session. It will help me go inward to find the light within the darkness. If you don’t already have plans, perhaps you could light some candles and do a yoga nidra practice.

Here are a couple of songs from my dear friend Amy Steinberg for your candle lighting:

And for your yoga nidra practice, I recommend “iRest at Ease” by Richard Miller.iRest_at_Ease_with_Richard_Miller_PhD
(You can find it on iTunes)

Festive Kale Salad

I made this for lunch yesterday and realized that it was the perfect dish for the holidays. Don’t you think it looks festive?

Green in the Holiday Treats• 1 large bunch of Kale (washed, stems removed, and chopped)
• ¼ cup orange juice
• ¼ cup rice wine vinegar (not seasoned)
• 2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
• 1 tablespoon Tamari or low sodium soy sauce
• 1 tablespoon honey
• ½ cup toasted almond slivers
• ¼ cup dried cranberries
• 2 tablespoons crystallized ginger, minced (optional)

Mix the wet ingredients together and pour them over the kale in a large bowl. Then massage the heck out of the kale to break it down. Then add the almonds, cranberries and ginger and massage some more. (The secret to tender kale is to really work it with your hands. This is not a time to be gentle!)

Blessings of light and joy,
Deb


Divine Your Life Sessions

Divine Your Life sessions for January – March 2015 are available!
Book your session, HERE.

 

You’re gonna wanna do this with me…

Even when busy

Maybe especially then

Take a vacation!

BlueSpiritCostaRica

I don’t know about you, but sometimes days, weeks, even months can go by and I’ve forgotten to look up.  Take my nose off the grindstone.  As much as I practice what I preach – like plugging energy leaks and creating a container for my day, as a business owner and mother I can find myself lost in the “busyness” of it all.

So every now and then I choose to take myself away.  On vacation.  But not the kind of vacation that simply distracts me.  I choose the kind that sets me free.  The kind that expands me, informs me, surprises and delights me.  So that when I return I am transformed into a fuller version of Me.  More radiant, more loving and more fully engaged in life.

You may think I’m just a dreamer.  But I’m the oldest daughter of a German Lutheran family.  I’m practical, too (thanks, Mom and Dad!)  So I make plans.

And here’s my plan:

November 1 – 8, 2014.  I’ve been invited to lead an amazing retreat at the most beautiful spot in Costa Rica.  Where luminaries like Deva Premal & Miten, Shiva Rea, Rodney Yee, Krishna Das, Joan Borysenko and many others choose to go.  It is heaven on earth.

We’ll dance.

We’ll do yoga.

We’ll embody the Divine Feminine.

We’ll learn.

We’ll be served luscious, fresh, healthy food.

We’ll rest.

We’ll soak up the magical, healing energies of the Pacific Ocean.

I know you want to join me.
Click here for all the details.
Even just looking at the pictures is a vacation for your eyes.

 

p.s.  If you missed my webinar this week on how to customize your container, no worries!  I recorded it and you can watch it here.

P.S.  Oh!  I just found out they are offering $300 off the retreat price if you register before March 1st.  Just do it!

Love & Blessings,
Deb

 

 

Bearthday 2011 blog

Earth Day

Every April, in honor of Earth Day and Bar Ostrand’s birthday (Bar is the ‘goddess in charge’ of my Daring Diva Dance Class) I create a special “Bearthday” class.  Each year I wonder how I will create a playlist as wonderful as the last year’s.   And each year, like magic, the perfect music comes to my awareness just in the nick of time.

Since many of you don’t live close enough to come dance with us I wanted to share the fabulous music we danced to this week.   The theme of this year’s Bearthday class was LOVE. LOVE for ourselves, LOVE for our planet and LOVE for each other.  The combination of lyrics, voices, rhythms and melodies created the perfect fuel for us to dance our prayers of LOVE.   I dare you not to be moved by this music!   Better yet, I dare you to put these tunes on your iPod, blast it loud and dance like there’s nobody watching.   When you do, let me know how it was!

Bearthday 2011 Playlist

From Will Blunderfield’s heart-opening new CD, “Hallelujah”

Long Time Sun

Hallelujah

Gayatri Mantra

Guest House

Pull Through

From Wah!’s new CD “Maa”

Jagatambe

Love Holding Love

Parashakti

Shanti

Pahimam

From Wade Imre Morisette’s CD “Maha Moha:  The Great Delusion”

Prayer

Inside

From the Goddess Alchemy Project CD “Frequencies of the Motherland”

Kundalini Manifest

From Bliss’s CD “ Hundred Thousand Angels”

Come Into the Light

A Hundred Thousand Angels

Grace

Farewell to Music

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