Tuesday, April 30, 2013
Monday, April 29, 2013
Sunday, April 28, 2013
Staying in the moment is essential as I have miles to walk before I reach my destination. I ground what is required of me each day as I write down the day of the week, the date including the year and a check list in the order of importance including times where I have numbers sessions or I am meeting others. This practice sets the intention as I enter the day, moment by moment, step by step, knowing I will have the energy to do whatever is needed.
A friend gave me a Keep Calm & Carry On mug as a going away gift. This sparked thoughts of The Calm, the true calm not me pretending to be calm while repressing how freaked out I am at any given time. The Calm that allows us to carry on is a Grace, the soul force of the Universe, holding us and sustaining us throughout our entire life. At times when life is amplified with stress and uncertainty, this Grace, this Calm is more apparent but it is always there. Whether we consciously call on or connect to this Grace, the Calm, this soul force, it is present within us and around us.
Yesterday, I took 3 more cats to Misty Eyes (www.mistyeyes.org). Unlike a couple of weeks ago when I dropped off others to be adopted out, I felt wrecked all morning with shallow breathing but the Calm held me as I experienced the sorrow so I could do what I needed to do. As I arrived at Misty Eyes, the volunteers who greeted me were the Calm as they hugged me and held me through my tears and heartbreak. Their words, their presence, their love and understanding were the Calm.
The Calm doesn't make life easier but it makes it possible to navigate paths that we must in order to make our way in this world. Acknowledge this Calm, rest in it, be it for others and let others be it for you so you can carry on living this life with gratitude, joy and abundance.
Saturday, April 27, 2013
Friday, April 26, 2013
Thursday, April 25, 2013
Whether you believe in messages from beyond or not, whether you have felt the connection with the spirit world or not, the invitation is to stay open to this sacred dance of life that continues to reveal more with each passing day.
Wednesday, April 24, 2013
But the flood gates opened within my heart
calling every abandoned cat around to my porch
eventually making their way into my home.
It was a shock to all especially me that I became the Crazy Cat Lady.
My coffee mug says: All lives should have 9 cats.
It has been a WONDERFUL ROLE in my life
but it is over.
I am 8 days from my move and can only take 2 kitties with me so my beloved cat family has been disbanded into new homes and with the help of Misty Eyes (www.mistyeyes.org) a local all volunteer based rescue and adoption center, the remaining will be placed where they can love and be loved. St. Francis, the patron saint of all animals has been working miracles, and I am in awe how everything is unfolding which reminds me again and again that I am the train but there is something far greater fueling this train (and each train on the track of life).
The cats were rescued by John and I. He used to say: We think we are rescuing them but they are actually rescuing us. It indeed felt this way as the connection and joy they brought into our home and our lives was divine. After John died, I declared: I am officially the crazy fu#%ing cat lady now, laughing at myself and the image of the stereotype: single, heartbroken woman filling her home with cats instead of humans, rattling around with wild hair, a moo moo, knee high pantyhose rolled down to her ankles with white pointy tennis shoes.
In the depths of my grief as I laid in bed, I made an agreement with myself: all you HAVE to do is scoop cat shit and breathe. This became my mantra: Scoop cat shit and breathe...scoop cat shit and breathe...When you want to feel alive, scoop cat shit and breathe, my comic relief version of the zen saying: When seeking enlightenment, chop wood, carry water. When enlightened, chop wood, carry water. Of course, I fed the cats too and caring for them, exchanging the energy of love with them was essential as it gave me something to focus on, something to get me out of bed; and when I laid in bed, they laid on top of me and around me. Our souls have been on a grand journey together!
As I began to get out into the world again, I was scooping cat shit while rocking a brand new pair of shiny red patent leather stilettos with a cork heel and laughed out loud as I thought: This crazy cat lady wears stilettos not a moo moo. I owned the fact that I was the crazy cat lady, this was indeed a role I was playing and enjoying, doing it my way; and this gave me great insight into how we box ourselves in with negative stereotypes and ideas of what it means to play certain roles in this life.
It is a gift we give ourselves to own who we are, to embrace the roles we play without apology, to not let the opinions of others or the stereotypes of the culture override what we want to do with our lives. And to stay open to roles yet to come. Never say Never! Don't limit yourself through fixed ideas of who you are. Life will always show us we are far more than we believe ourselves to be and it is exciting to be shocked by life as we are led onto paths we couldn't see coming.
Tuesday, April 23, 2013
Monday, April 22, 2013
Sunday, April 21, 2013
Saturday, April 20, 2013
Friday, April 19, 2013
Shared excitement ignites the fertile field within each of us. This is the power of being happy for others instead of jealous. Happiness for others is living in the abundance of life, knowing the possibilities are limitless for all of us. Jealousy of others is living in the lack, a scarcity consciousness that locks us into beliefs around limitations and competition with others - survival of the fittest. One is a thriving mentality and the other is a surviving mentality. I pick thriving because it just feels so damn good to enjoy life and watch others find a way to enjoy this ride even when they encounter events that rock them.
Some have said I am sooooo jealous of you! with an acknowledgement of the fact that they too are ready for a life change but don't know what they means yet. There is no charge of resentment toward me and they are far from a scarcity mentality. I have watched them move spontaneously into new ideas, new wants for their own lives, exploring what makes them happy and what simply doesn't anymore. They are living the answers to What now? opening to new life just as I have been doing for 2 years, 5 months and 2 days.
I can mark the end of my old life as it was John's death date: 11/17/10. It is not that obvious for everyone; some finish lines are blurred. We invite a new life when we tune in to our Self and dare to ask: Am I happy? What do I want now? Do I feel excited by my life? Do I feel jealous, the heat of longing for the life others have? (Don't deny this out of shame...we all feel jealous at some point in our lives. Welcome the information: what is this telling me?).
Surround yourself with people who share your excitement for life and watch this excitement grow and grow and grow. Pay attention to what it feels like when you surround yourself with people who are naysayers, downers, energy vampires who have forgotten that life is meant to be enjoyed and happiness is essential - it is the mark of a soul on fire who lives beyond circumstances.
Thursday, April 18, 2013
Wednesday, April 17, 2013
I can remember even as night fell the day John died, holding my hand to my heart and saying silently to him, my Self and the great Creator: It was a privilege. It was my privilege to share this life with you, to be your wife, your partner and your friend, to bear witness to the way you showed up so magnificently and generously. Thank you...thank you...thank you.
Those we share this life with most intimately help us to remember all that we are, all that we give just by being who we are and this is a necessary mirror, the truest gift of connection, human to human. And the whole of creation reveals the truth of who we are through nature: in the earth, the stars, the sky, the trees, the winds, the rain, the flowers, the ocean, the birds, the animals, the mountains and so on.
A friend sent me a message yesterday to share her joy in remembering the abundance she is, that life is: My world was ROCKED as I looked at the tree and knew instantly that life is NOW, make the most of NOW as this is all there is. In a flash, grace dropped her into this knowing, escorted her into the truth that this moment whether we label it good or bad is everything, is a privilege to be in, to experience.
When we forget the magnificence of our life, we feel a dullness, a disconnect from our Self, others, life. We drift through our days waiting for things to be different, waiting for someday to come instead of being present to all that is, all that life is giving us now moment by moment.
We are always the swan NOT the ugly duckling whether we remember this, whether we know this or not. This is TRUTH. It simply is. Each of us, life expressed as individuals on this human journey has purpose far beyond what the mind can comprehend. The mind will lead us to believe that we are the swan only when we do things right or reach a goal or achieve a level of success. This life is sacred as we are the abundance we seek in the outside world. And this life is our privilege to live, to express the abundance.
Each of us is magnificent. Even in our most flawed moments where we want to hit the REDO button. The privilege is ours. Hold this TRUTH in your heart: This life is a privilege!
Tuesday, April 16, 2013
Monday, April 15, 2013
Sunday, April 14, 2013
Saturday, April 13, 2013
Friday, April 12, 2013
Thursday, April 11, 2013
Life can be hard, indeed. There is no denying this, but it can also be much easier than we often make it. We get into ruts, patterns of behavior and just do and do without thought of how we are being affected or if we really want to do what we are doing or really need to do what we are doing.
After making the decision to sell my home, I have begun to get so excited about not having to drive 40 minutes one-way to meet friends or clients. I look forward to not hiring someone to landscape and cut the acreage I live on. I don't want to haul my trash in the wagon down the hill of my driveway anymore or the 40 pound bags of salt pellets up the stairs and then, down the basement. Managing my home wasn't too much until it was. Being present to my Self, paying attention to how I feel and daring to tell the truth to my Self, I can make my life easier through exercising the power of my choices.
There was a time when I led workshops and enjoyed the experience but now, I have no desire to do this. When approached about doing workshops on grief, the truth is I DON'T WANNA' BE THE GRIEF GAL! No thanks. I am privileged to be with people in their grief one on one and acknowledge it but to be in the intensity of that energy for entire weekends or a week exhausts me just thinking about it. Just because I would be "good" at it doesn't mean I should do it and I get to decide how I spend my life. I love the expression: stop shouldin' on yourself! Shoulds have an energy of guilt and shame leaving us feeling SHITTY. Choices, knowing we have choices empowers us to stand in our truth whether others agree or not.
The invitation is: HOW DO YOU MAKE LIFE EASIER? so you can free energy to enjoy your life more. Choice by choice, moment by moment, day by day, make your way! What works for you today may not tomorrow so give yourself permission to make necessary changes. Don't wait for others to give you permission. Write yourself a permission slip: Kathy McHugh, I give you permission to make your life easier whatever that means to you. I love you and always have your back, Kathy McHugh
Wednesday, April 10, 2013
that lined the staircase leading upstairs in my home.
birth announcements, wedding days, group shots of all my nieces and nephews, great nieces and nephews, my mom and dad as well as their parents and siblings.
and the flood of memories and emotions they stirred.
Tuesday, April 9, 2013
We have "dance parties" on top of the houseboat all summer long where we dance ourselves soaked, drenched with sweat and then, jump into the lake. Everyone cuts loose, jumping into the center of the circle to show their best moves and we laugh with a delight in their freedom.
I just returned from the Florida Keys where we danced on the beach for hours celebrating the nuptials of my niece, Macy and her husband, Mark. Everyone joined in the fun as the DJ spinned song after song; and when the last song played, we wanted more.
At this point in my life, I can dance as if no one is watching, not afraid to appear foolish or do things differently or misstep or even fall on my ass. I love the saying Those who hear not the music, think the dancers mad. Each of us has an individual dance that is part of the collective dance. Sometimes when we are dancing others don't get it and when others are dancing we don't get it. We don't hear the music, innately wired within them and they can't hear ours. Yet, when we dance our dance, the joy of this is infectious and gives permission to others to dance their dance.
The invitation is to accept that we are all dancers of life so dance your dance, allow others to dance their dance, and say THANK YOU! all day long for this sacred experience that is LIFE.
Monday, April 8, 2013
Less than 24 hours before the revelation that it was time to move embodied me, I spoke to a friend while we ate dinner in Nashville about my sincere love for and connection with my home. I shared with her that I couldn't imagine living anywhere else, describing the country setting, the way I feel in the space and my plans to renovate in order to make it my own instead of preserving the way things were when John was alive.
As I drove home up I65 North, everything felt different. Something had shifted within me that I had not consciously participated in. This drive that used to fill me with the joy of adventure, cruising down an open road with music blaring, dancing to the beat with ideas churning and springing forward was dulled by a heaviness that I tried to shake off but was beyond my will so I leaned into it in order to listen and extract the wisdom.
4 1/2 hours later, I walked in the door with luggage in tow. In an instant, my home had become a cage. I knew with the intensity of absolute truth that if I stayed there, I would wither in the comforts of it. But if I dared to fly through the cage door that had opened, I would experience a new life that I was starved for and didn't even know it until that moment. How could this be? It is mystical, my soul's journey unfolding in ways I could never have planned. This home that had been far more than bricks and mortar, that had contained my hopes and my dreams, that had been a sanctuary, an enduring foundation that held me through the 16 years I lived there was no longer. And the stark realization was that the Kathy of yesterday that had lived there was no longer. Kathy doesn't live here anymore...
The home address is 6260 which adds to "5" (6+2+6+0=14 reduced 1+4=5) had expressed the "5" energy to the fullest extent: FREEDOM that comes from change - some welcomed with excitement and some not but all the changes an opportunity to set more of me free. ADVENTURE and EXPERIMENTATION - setting sail throughout life day in and day out. Living life through the 5 senses fueling the passion that lives within and must come out to play. Coming into my body more alive with a strength that matched my heart, soul and mind. Dancing with my beloved, John, in ways that shocked the hell out of both of us as we loved bigger than we knew was possible experiencing a depth of healing that only the miracle of LOVE can create. Traveling to new places within the world and within myself to know how to use this power. Honoring the restlessness and boredom that led me into personal Odysseys like writing my book, selling my business, becoming a coach, numerologist and speaker. The gratitude leaps from my chest as I give thanks for it all!
There is a country song written and recorded by Miranda Lambert called The House That Built Me. When I would hear this song, it would make me tear up as I connected with the message of how our experiences in a home create an enduring foundation, an inner fortification that we get to take with us wherever we go in life. My soul must have known even the first time I heard this song that all roads would lead me here to this new life of untethered roaming, discovering that home is indeed wherever my heart is so I must allow this home to companion me now wherever the inner winds blow me throughout the rest of my days.
The Kathy of today may not live in the home anymore but I am more alive than I have ever been, following the compass innately within that will continue to shock the hell out of me as I experience this grand adventure for as long as it lasts.
Sunday, April 7, 2013
Tears are essential to our health so I welcome them.
Saturday, April 6, 2013
When I looked up the symbolic meaning of the pelican, I found this message: The ability to be bouyant and to rest on top in spite of heaviness of life circumstances. The pelican teaches that no matter how difficult life becomes, no matter how much you plunge - you can pop to the surface, rising above life's trials. This is right in line with my experience of kicking and scream, eventually allowing what is which lifts me above the muck. MIRACULOUSLY, this always happens in perfect time - no need to push or force.
The invitation is to look back and see how the unfolding of our lives has required PATIENCE even when we don't consider ourselves to be patient people. Looking back helps us to trust the unfolding of our lives and reminds us to not waste energy but to rest in this knowing.