The Words

Lots on my heart and little I can share openly about it. I don’t know what to say – how does one find words for events that feel overwhelmingly without hope of ‘positive’ outcome? Oh yes, I could say a lot about our perceptions and the illusions of what is positive and that all is working in our best interest. But not today. Part of me can’t find a care about that today. This is far from my usual approach to life, but I just can’t shake it. Today everything in my being questions all that I have practiced, tuned into and believed as true for the last 8 years. I’ve never been the one to ask why something happened to me, to my family. Today I’m asking. I’m angry that it’s happening. I’m angry at the idea that it might be ‘just what we all need.’ How on earth can that be true? (My spiritual self steps in here to note – it doesn’t have to be true on earth. I’d like to squash that voice today.)

I’m not talking about my feelings out loud in order to have a ranting session. I think we must all come to this place in our lives, we must each have experiences where we just want to scream out at God for bringing us to this place. Listening to Caroline Myss and other teachers all these years talk about ‘those people’ (my emphasis with the quotes, not hers) who ask ‘why this happened to me’–I never got that. I can’t recall another time when I’ve felt quite like this. Having the level of consciousness to believe in the purity of Divine presence and each of us having our own path mingled with the level of devastation I feel today is unnerving. And I can’t seem to shake it.

This blog has been a place for me to express. I’ve shared the most positive of experiences and realizations and a few of the not-so-pretty ones. This is perhaps the ugliest and most uncomfortable thus far. Angry. I’m fuming deep inside myself. The heartbreak remains. I’m becoming more and more understanding of people who feel this way, when previously I just couldn’t grasp why one couldn’t move out of this space. Even while I want to lash out at all the Divine truth that lives within my being, I’m acutely aware of its inner workings as I write about my anger. Already the gift is unfolding–because I have a different perspective of the devastating impact people sometimes feel on their psyche and well being with the events of earth school.

I’m asking how this can possibly be for our benefit. I’m desperately searching for something to hold onto, to get me through just one day at a time. And as much as there is anger churning and popping up when I least expect it, the deeper truths continue to whisper into my heart. All is well. If I can just keep coming back to that…

I received a beautiful message from my dear friend Joss Burnel in the form of her recent post Be Still and Know. She shares a meditation she recorded that I’ve listened to several times over the last day, feeling a comfort and connection each time. It truly is the little things. I have no words of wisdom or guidance to share with you, just my own feelings and thoughts. I’m certain there are others of you who understand this place of being all too well. I now have a deeper sense of awareness for how you feel and what happens when one is in this space. I don’t know what else to do except just be in this moment and all that comes with it. ‘This too shall pass.’ xo

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God Imagined It

I began to write a ‘Happy New Year’ post on Facebook, and it formed into a letter as the words poured out. And so I find myself here, with so much I wish to say. The irony of this moment is that I was here just this morning, ‘Add New Post’ screen open and ready for all I held inside to fill the page. But nothing happened…

It’s the quote Oprah has shared several times that got me:

God has so much more for you than you could ever imagine for yourself.

My fingers were dancing across the keyboard, thoughts and images coming in waves. What am I thankful for? What changed? How am I different now from January 2012?

Lauren and Cliff – TWO of our beloved children are now off to college. Lauren recently said this is no longer her home, it’s now her parents’ house. She’s found so much of herself this year, a mirror of her own mother who’s been doing the same. She at 19, as I melted into being 40. Clifford becoming a young man as he steps off into his much desired independence. That’s been his gift to me, his quiet spirit guidance – ‘Mom, let it be.’ Jordan, who wasn’t so sure she would like being an only child for the first time in her life–this beautiful young lady (I want to say ‘girl’) unaware just yet of her impact on this world. I realize sometimes I don’t allow myself to sink into what it is to love, to know and to be mother to these three children of ours. It makes me weepy to sit in it for a moment. They’re amazing, these human beings.

Soul Journey

I feel my inner critic reminding me how sappy this must be. But this is my blog, my space, my heart. This is her voice, here. Now. I couldn’t have imagined this life I have. I wouldn’t have thought to expect or ask for all that 2012 brought my way. It’s been an incredible journey deeper into our lives, into my self, my spirit, the interior of my soul. What I felt on January 2–Breaking Down the Box–became the theme of much of my year. Let go, release, liberate, allow. As Summer faded away and Autumn made her presence, the shift had occurred and was finding her way to the surface. With our family in transition and at ‘rest,’ I felt the call. It wasn’t what you might expect. There wasn’t any bolt of lightning. Steadily I’d felt it growing these last six months. And I couldn’t have imagine it this would be how 2012 ended.

Our children are nearly grown. Our marriage has strengthened – again in that quiet, subtle way – and our love has deepened. My heart is more open, although I would have thought it hard to believe that was possible. And not only my heart, my energy, my whole SELF. There’s a peacefulness I didn’t have a year ago. I’m content. (A little laugh here, remembering that ‘Contentment’ was the topic of my graduation speech, although I struggled to find any at 18.) I’ve created a business of my own, having desired and written about this in my journal for a couple of years. And this business is one that I love, that is of service to so many and creates a space of grace and collaboration–very fulfilling. We live in a new time, my friends. We’re alive at such an incredible time of our history. I am loving life and all She has brought to me in 2012. Every moment of heartache, every tear, kiss, smile and fit of laughter–I wouldn’t change a thing.

I couldn’t have imagined it. Ever. But here’s what I know–God imagined an extraordinary life for Jackie L. Robinson. I’m excited and so open to the moments of 2013–the ‘year of the soul.’ I’m in awe of this energy that has woven its way into my life, and I welcome all it has to offer.

Very deep gratitude to each one of you who is reading this, who’ve been here reading my words from the beginning and those who have recently connected. I’d love for you to leave a note so we can reconnect at the start of a new year. May 2013 bring your dreams to life, stir your heart with love, heal your pains. May you experience what it is to be at peace, to merge with the sacred, to feel abundant joy. May you open to all that awaits you. Believe in the most beautiful of who you are and trust there is a Force greater than you holding the rest. May it all be so. Much love to each of you. Happy 2013, my dear friends.

Generosity of Spirit

We’re doing something very special over at Sacred Circle Retreats. Twelve days of gifts from the Guides….generosity at her finest. I was inspired to facilitate this project through Robin Rice’s teleconference ‘7 Things You Must Do To Love Your Life.‘ As she talked about giving back, her message stood out loud and clear: Generosity tells the Universe ‘I am a good conduit for what you’re going to give me.’ Indeed, I am. I know this, but it’s time to put it into action in ways that expand our comfort zone, our ‘usual’ way of living and to move beyond what is expected and into the extraordinary. xoxo

Entering the Castle

I had no idea in 2005 that a course I signed up for called “From Intuition to Mysticism” would transform my life. Not only did I shift entirely in who I was and how I encountered the world, but the course itself changed direction. There would be three weekend classes, and during that first one in March, our teacher Caroline Myss would undergo a total reordering of what she would teach us. St. Teresa of Avila came to be by her side and served as the guide for the remaining course. Rather than teach us about a variety of mystics in history, we instead began to move through the castle of our souls based on Teresa’s book ‘The Interior Castle.’ What resulted from that class is Caroline’s book ‘Entering the Castle.’ I haven’t read it for quite some time, but picking it up this evening, there is so much that calls to me. Although I’ve not been working directly the introspection contained within, I find that all I’ve encountered over the last seven years mirrors much of what speaks to my soul from within each chapter and page. 

We can all pray. We can all move into the space of our interior self, and even more deeply into the castle of our own soul. From within that place, we carry an energy of humility, openness and clarity if we choose to allow its penetration. What called me back into the pages of Entering the Castle is the Entry Prayer that follows–a prayer Caroline shares for us to come to a place of stillness and begin to ‘cross the bridge’ to the castle of our souls. It speaks to me deeply, and I believe there are many of you who will feel its mystical power too. 

‘I cross the bridge into the silent bliss of my Castle. I close the drawbridge and forbid all outside influences from entry into this holy place that is my soul. Here in my Castle, I am alone with God. Under God’s light and companionship I discover the depth and beauty of my soul. I embrace the power of prayer. I open myself to divine guidance. I surrender myself to become a channel of grace, healing, and service as God directs my life.’ 

This is my prayer. Much love. xo 

Seeing Through Grace

It’s not an easy thing to let go of what seems obvious, especially when it stirs those emotions deep within us. I was given an opportunity to do so last night and this morning following a very unpleasant experience. Our son is home from college, and while visiting with family at our home after dinner last night, proceeded to answer my brother’s question “how are things going with your friend and his dog?’ ‘Oh, well, he went away and locked the dog in the bathroom for the entire weekend, she destroyed it, ripped up tile and chewed on stuff (the dog is a puppy), so he took her out in the woods and left her.’ Ugh. Ouch. Oh, my dear friends, I still feel my heart break as I type this. There was an audible gasp in the room by all who were present, and then an onslaught of disbelief, anger, heartache all directed toward our son. He’d been quite flat in telling us, as though it was of little consequence. Our older daughter is one who will become very passionate and at times quite aggressive in advocating for something she believes in. The heat quickly rose and all that warm family-all-together energy dissipated into heaviness. My brother walked out. He was too angry and hurt to say anything. I finally stepped in and told the two older kids that was enough. There’s no point arguing about it and pointing fingers at one another. 

It was quiet as I struggled to maintain composure while cleaning up the kitchen. I couldn’t do my usual dance of trying to smooth it over without being confrontational. Generally, I can honor both sides and allow them to speak whatever they have and not be too swayed. Not this time. Too close to my heart, and I’ve moved too far away from the ‘usual dance.’ Instead I came upstairs and let the tears come. I could feel my own anger at our son for not having more compassion, not doing something, not at least feeling as heartbroken as I was. Surely from the outside, it looked to everyone in that room that he was cold and didn’t care at all. It definitely felt that way to me. 

When I woke this morning and began writing about it, it became crystal clear. It’s not at all that he’s cold. He’s still the same boy who was terribly disturbed over his friend’s parents happily watching a chipmunk drown in a barrel of water because it had torn up their yard. The difference is that he lives out in the real world now, and has yet to find his own center. He has no idea just how to stand firm in what his heart tells him. Not only is he young, but he’s a male and that makes it ever so harder when it comes to expectations for how to be. We are coming out of a time when men were forbidden to have hearts. My husband’s father told him to stop crying at baseball – there was nothing to cry about. It wasn’t ok. It still isn’t in some environments. At college, away from home and security, trying to just survive, it isn’t ok to have a heart and speak up for an animal who is being mistreated–at least in his perspective at the time. Whether my son knew it or not, that was the defense. He was protecting his own need to survive, to be accepted and be ok. 

It would have been so easy to let my emotions decide how to be with our son, to be angry with him because my spirit was so pained. That would only have served to become a power struggle. My way, my truth pitted against his. Instead, it felt right to share with him how it made me feel and to ease into letting him know I understand how difficult it must be for him to make it at college. He’s been quite homesick over the last several weeks. His whole reality has shifted in a way we sometimes forget occurs when our children leave home. To the world, it may look like an exciting time to get out on your own and have new experiences. But to some of our children, it’s empty, frightening and uncertain. It’s a natural thing to seek the best way to survive and get through it, and I know that’s what he’s been doing. To have responded with harsh judgment would only have created friction between us and deepened the inner turmoil I know is there beneath the self protection. Letting him know I understand what he was feeling and I still love him seemed to allow him to put down his internal weapons and consider some alternate scenarios. 

GRACE is what allowed me to shift my vision. She whispered through my pen, letting me ‘see’ the truth of what his energy was saying. GRACE. A mystical substance with the power to alter our reality. And, I believe, with the power to heal. So I’ll continue to heal my own cracks and wounds, while channeling grace to all animals who are in the way of harm, and to all beings who seek to become whole. This is my prayer. xo 

Radiantly Flawless

‘I understand the nature of illusion and see that I do not, nor have ever possessed any defects.’ ~ Step 6 of the Steps

I sat down to write on Sunday morning and felt the truth of this statement sink deep into my being: I do NOT, nor have EVER possessed any defects. The Universe conspires with our souls to bring the most profound healing and enlightenment to us, to enable us to release and move forward with purpose in who we are. And so we began…

Recently three people have resurfaced in my life–three people, that is, by whom I was hurt deeply many years ago. These are individuals, from different times and places. One goes all the way back to the year I graduated high school. I’ve felt much of the pain from these experiences melt away as I’ve grown and healed, but as one by one my interactions in present time began to trigger those old experiences, I have realized they’ve come back around to allow me to continue to heal and release. It was actually unsettling as with each one I felt myself wanting to say things I didn’t dare say when the original encounters occurred. I had no idea how to stand up for myself back then–and I also walked away from each scenario with full willingness to own my part. I could see how in each situation I had contributed to the undoing of our relationships, and so rather than point my finger at them, I held myself accountable for what was mine. That meant it wasn’t right to make a fuss about what they had done ‘to me.’ 

I captured this photo while we were visiting the Georgia Guidestones on Saturday. Drawn in by the mockingbird, it’s quite apparent by the radiant orb at the bottom of the photo there was a beautiful energy present. Radiantly Flawless indeed.

That’s the old story. The new story was written as I sat down on Sunday morning to sort out some of what I was feeling around the triggers. Feelings of being wrong, inadequate, undesirable, too outspoken, too ‘good’ have all swirled around inside of me since reconnecting with each of these people. But when I began writing, I realized: I’m having some of the same feelings, but without being able to see anything I’d done ‘wrong’ to create the current unpleasantness. I couldn’t turn and point the finger at me this time. There wasn’t anything I felt badly about, no shame, no poor choices, no lack of self esteem in how I encountered each one. Yet, those emotions were still coming up. 

Something began to shift. If I’m being who I am today–and getting the same results as I did years ago when I made choices I wouldn’t make today–then it’s not about what I did or didn’t do. It’s not about how I contributed to the situation. It’s not about that I need to own my choices. It’s not about looking back and owning how I created part of the problem. And so Step 6 began to weave her way into my thoughts. She’d been embedded into my bodies through last week’s class and processing, but now she was standing as my truth. I do not now, nor have ever possessed any defects. No defects. I wasn’t defective all those years ago, in each of those relationships. It’s not that I was wrong–because I’m not and have never been defective! 

There is an enormous magnitude of healing and release in this truth, my friends. I am not – YOU are not – defective. We are perfectly whole. Radiantly flawless. We are as we were mean to be. I was being myself then, as I am being myself now. My intention wasn’t ever to contribute to anyone’s suffering, especially my own. I was just being Jackie. As she was. As she is. Unbroken. Not defective. Seeing with clarity the illusion I’ve lived under for far too long. 

I feel and see myself in a whole different light. Layers of guilt and self judgment are dissolving away. There’s immense power in this awareness of myself: I am NOT defective. I was not–ever. There aren’t any defects, nothing to find or fix or try to own or make better. NOT defective. 

I am radiantly flawless. As are you. 

As part of our processing for Step 6, Fay guided us in a beautiful processing meditation. It was very profound for me personally, and I’m sharing it here with you. Thank you to Fay Hart for the ease and grace with which she assists our consciousness through these steps, and for allowing us all to process at will using this meditation as our guide. 

Mystical Highways

There are moments when I think about our ability to connect with one another that it moves me to tears. For me personally, intimate connection is so important. It can be a struggle at times to interact on a surface level. 

Just contemplating how easily we can reach out and touch one another, how quickly information is shared, bringing us close together in the space of our hearts–it’s quite moving isn’t it? I’m elated to be alive in this time and space, to have a relationship to the energies that move beneath what looks like Facebook, Twitter, teleconferences, texting, etc. These are part of our ‘mundane’ world, but looking through the lens of the mystical, these are in fact energetic frequencies through which we can choose to heal and empower ourselves and others, or not. For me, they carry a means of joining heart to heart, in the space of a second. If we tune in to that energy field, we find there is much waiting to embrace us there. 

In in awe, really. In awe of the healing, the emotional release and soul companionship I’ve witnessed and experienced as I’ve learned and worked with social media and the internet. Imagine if you will, these exchanges as medians of light, highways on which we meet one another and exchange inner truths. It’s as though we are traveling an alternate reality, formed of our heart-centered connection. Words escape me, but the feeling is immense. It warms me from the core of my being as I feel the expansion of what is possible. Never in our written history have the ‘records’ and communication lines of connecting and sharing been so openly accessible. 

That’s what it’s about, isn’t it, my friends? Allowing ourselves to open, to flower from the inside out rather than depend on something in our outer world to mold us. On these invisible roadways, we are not our physical selves, but spiritual beings coming together to heal, to grow in our own truth and to honor one another. I’m feeling the fullness of that truth in my heart today. And if you’re reading this, you’re part of my circle, we’ve met somewhere on these paths of energy. I bow to you as we pass one another, or perhaps stop and share a moment of time with one another. As I close my eyes and look around this circle we’ve created together, my heart is warmed with the love  and grace that pool in its center. I say to each of you….thank you, thank you, thank you. xo 

If you haven’t yet, I invite you to visit Sacred Circle Retreats, where soul connection is offered through the mystical highway of internet. ; )