“Empty your mind, be formless, shapeless – like water. Now you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup, you put water into a bottle, it becomes the bottle, you put it in a teapot, it becomes the teapot. Now water can flow or it can crash. Be water, my friend.”
Bruce Lee quotes
Today was my Grammy’s birthday and the day started off a bit rocky. This day marks the first time in my entire life that my Grammy wouldn’t be there to pick up the line when I called to sing her Happy Birthday. The first year that I wouldn’t be able to see her face light up after knocking on her little blue door with a surprise bouquet of fresh flowers hidden behind my back.
After images and memories of my Grammy started clouding my head, my heart grew heavy with grief releasing what seemed like a dam of tears that just kept flowing, and flowing. In the midst of my hysteria, my phone rang and it was a really great friend of mine. She could clearly tell I was upset, so she asked me what was wrong? I told her that today was my Grammy’s birthday, and I miss her so much. I told her about how sad I was that I was unable to see her or talk to her today. She was shocked and amazed at the coincidence that she had a very good friend at her house at that very moment who had lost her Dad 2 years ago today and was having the same type of grief filled day like me.
I found so much comfort in knowing that I was not alone in my suffering, and that I am not the only person in the world who grieves. It made me feel so much better remembering that each and every person walking this earth has their trials and tribulations. This realization was very sobering, giving me a renewed sense of hope and a brand new perspective on the day.
I slapped myself out of my somber mood and decided that instead of mourning my Gram on her birthday I would spend the day celebrating the amazing day she was born, her life and the love she brought to my life and the world.
I went outside and sat quietly alone. I took in a few deep relaxing breaths, listened to the birds chirping, and felt the cool morning breeze on my face. I set my intentions for the day making sure that they were extremely clear. I was going to have a beautifully magical day. I would be open to LOVE and in full surrender and acceptance of what this day had to offer. Most importantly, I knew in my heart that my Grammy would be with me in spirit.
With the mood set, I excitedly picked myself up and changed into the dress I was wearing the last time I saw my Grammy. I smiled when I remembered her looking at me and my dress with such love and admiration, then she told me that I looked more vibrant and beautiful than ever.
I headed out the door to celebrate life. The day truly seemed like a dream, even the colors of the trees, sky and flowers seemed more vivid than usual, and the sunshine was a golden hue that lit up everything it touched. I felt my Grammy with me holding me up, and walking me through the day as if she was teaching me one of her very wise and valuable lessons about the cycles of life and the undulations that vibrate through it.
My Grammy has always loved carnations, so I swung by the local flower shop and picked up a few pink carnations to bring to the bay where she is. I bought a total of four carnations, one from me, 2 from my girls and the fourth from my mom. I chuckled with delight when the woman told me the total was $5.44. 5/4 being her birthday and 44 means angels are all around you (a very significant number for me). I thought, “Oh Grammy you are a silly lady, thank you”. When I arrived at the bay, I threw each carnation into the water, watching them float effortlessly with the tide, they were going with the flow without resistance.
As I gazed at the suns golden sparkle on the water dancing around the carnations, I thought of her, wishing I could see her again, my heart started to clench with yet another undulation of grief. Out of the corner of my eye, I noticed commotion in the water, so I turned my head to see what is was. I couldn’t believe the innocent cuteness of what I saw, there was a seal and a seagull playfully engaging each other, taking turns nudging one another. I laughed out loud, and the grief lifted, leaving my heart feeling lighter once again.
The day continued with its various ups and downs, ebbing and flowing just like the tides of life.
As this most memorable day was coming to a close, I was driving home reflecting on what a peaceful day it had been. I stopped at a light and looked over to my right I noticed a slew of police cars and ambulances surrounding a cyclist who had been hit by a car. My stomach turned with fear for him, I could tell it was serious because they had the I.V. started and were really rushing to get him in to the ambulance. I felt so bad for the poor man on the bike, and it started to pull my mood down once again to the somber helpless state I found myself in this morning.
I turned the corner and saw a beautiful colorful kite flowing in the wind, with the baby blue sky cuddled behind it, there were children running barefoot in the bright green grass, with huge smiles on their little faces. Laughing and enjoying life. There again is another clear example of life and its many vibrations and ups and downs.
Life is happening, there are going to be times when it’s truly amazing and exhilarating and times when it will be depressing and devastating, it’s all part of life’s rhythm. You are going to feel at ease and steady sometimes or vulnerable and completely out of control at other times. Life has its beginnings and endings, then beginnings and endings again.
I know that I am definitely not in control, and I believe that there is a force that lies behind this life that is far greater and intelligent than us. We can choose resistance to life’s circumstances or we can be more like the carnations floating along with the water, and go with the flow.
I think it is so important to try and stay true to yourself no matter the outward circumstances. True peace is always found within.
The best part of the day was when I laid down in bed to check the stats of the previous blog I had posted about my Grammy for her birthday…and there were a total of 44 visits! What a perfect way to end this magical day. I give thanks to my Grammy for being with me today and always!