Follow Your Heartsong

There are times I feel strongly the desire to express through writing, but the words escape me. This morning I decided to pick up an old journal from the middle of 2007 and seek out some of the poetry I had written a few years ago. Reading those lyrics that seem such a short time ago in my life, I was instantly aware of how far I’ve come and how much has been released over the last 3 1/2 years of this journey. The shift within myself was immediate, bringing about a clearer perspective on who I am TODAY. Uncertainties, doubts, worries about where I am on my present path vanished as I began to read the words of a woman who had no voice. Searching desperately she implored God, her soul, her self to step into the light, into authenticity.

“What’s there in my soul, hiding out in the dark? Flames would burst into fire – just give me one spark. Let me just get a glimpse of this delicate space. Step out of the shadows, show me your face. Something within is calling to me – I can’t quite hear its voice; it’s barely a whisper yet it feels like a scream. Crying out in great pain, begging me for its ease. ‘You’re not making sense’ comes my reply. Though your lips move, neither words nor sound can escape. What is keeping you mute, can’t you see, don’t you know? Why can’t you break free from this master of your soul? You want to, I see desperation in your eyes. The message seems clear – this is now ‘do or die.'”

As I look back upon the growing pains of developing my own voice, becoming an authentic expression of who I truly am inside–I can both feel her pain and at the same time feel the love that has grown in its place.  This woman had to want it.  She had to need it, desperate enough to risk all her comforts to find it.

And through her eyes, I can now see how much I have healed the holes in my spirit.  She has a voice now–and sings beautifully her heartsong.

Don’t judge where you are in your journey.  Allow yourself to feel what you feel, experiencing what you must in order to release old wounds and burdens.  Beneath all of that breathes a vibrant, extraordinary spirit, just waiting for your permission to BE.

We each have our own heartsong.  Its sweet sounds can be heard when we honor who we are in this very moment and take the time to listen…..to the whispers of our hearts…..

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On Being a “Good Girl”

At a quiet moment in my day yesterday, I had one of those AHA! moments.  The kind where something that has always been part of your life changes its meaning and form, a light bulb goes off and you become enlightened to a rich awareness.

We all have the dialogue that goes on in the “back” of our thoughts.  That voice that can be our mother, our judge or another archetypal presence.  In this particular instance, it was that “mother” voice within my own consciousness that came to the stage.  I heard her say “that’s right, good girl” in support of what I was doing.  And in that exact moment….the switch flipped!

I really could feel the energy within myself change.  We’ve all experienced these moments, and really, they’re quite stunning are they not?!  In my younger years, I soaked it up every time my mom said out loud or even hinted at me being a “good girl.”  This meant I was loved, and as many of us do I took on that to be a “good girl” – to be loved – I had to be pleasing in my actions and my words.  A rigorous code of conduct began to weave itself within my subconscious, driving me to always be pleasing to others in order to be liked or loved.

But here’s the AHA! moment, my friends.  The entirety of my being realized in the space of a nano-second – this is not true!  The goodness of my “good girl” is love, kindness, joy.  That was what my mom could feel.  THAT was why she said “good girl” to me, filled with loving sentiment.  I didn’t have to get A’s, make sure my mom was happy, try to hide any perceived flaws or mistakes.  I just was me….and that was enough!  I was a “good girl” and indeed am a “good girl” just because I am Jackie.  Just because I love to love, respect people where they are, offer kindness and caring.  And even in the times when I struggle to find this place in myself, the good does not go away.  I don’t have to earn my goodness….it just is!

What a liberating, exhilarating and incredibly uplifting realization!  This changes the whole order of your existence, an AHA! such as this!

You too are GOOD.  Not because you have to be, but because you are.  I love the first line in Mary Oliver’s poem WILD GEESE:  “you do not have to be good.”  What she conveys is you do not have to try to be good by human standards.  You are good in the eyes of the Universe.  Take a pause, and let that sink in.  You ARE good.

Your heart will tell you so.  When you pause….listen to its whispers and feel the goodness that is you.

On Being Broken

The message that continues to make its presence known is centered around transformation; letting go of what we hold onto so tightly, to allow for what is next to come through.

In Avatar there was a line:  “It is hard to fill a cup that is already full.”  When we spend our time and energy holding on to what WAS rather than looking into today and seeing what IS, we are robbing ourselves of the potential we all carry.  Spirit is speaking to us daily, offering us opportunities to create change, to be the architects of our own destiny.  Sitting still, we miss out on the gifts and miracles that will be the catalyst to transform our pain, our need to control, our fear, our self-destruction into healing, trust, peace, self-esteem and LOVE.

Can you imagine?  Love knocks on your door, desiring to be the center of your life, but asking you one thing in return:  you must give and receive her unconditionally.  You must put your ego on the shelf, quiet the need to be right, to be understood, to have it your own way…and choose…to LOVE.  We must allow ourselves to be broken, so that what we cannot see, but most need can enter the cracks of our soul, of our heart, and weave love into every crevice.

It was 3 or 4 years ago now that I did some work with Debbie Unterman, an alchemical hypnotherapist here in Atlanta.  During one of our sessions, I remember so clearly saying that I couldn’t let go, I couldn’t feel or relinquish control because I was like an egg – and if I did let go – I was going to break.  And from that session I learned, it was ok to break, for there would be a new me born of what remained.  I can promise you that my life has changed dramatically since then; perhaps less on the outside than from within.  My controller worked hard inside of my emotions, quieting my voice, dampening my spirit.  There were some very tough places along the way, in which I certainly did feel emptiness.  But love has and continues to fill those spaces, opening me to richness I could only have imagined.

Take a chance, let go, allow yourself to break, knowing the love and light will fill you up if you let it.  Open yourself, your spirit; listen to your own voice.  For it is then you will hear the whispers of your heart.



Cheryl Richardson~Happy New Year

I love this post from Cheryl Richardson’s Facebook today:

Happy New Year!

Today is a day of wonderful new beginnings – 1/1/11 – a perfect time to think about ONE small daily habit you could put in place to support you in listening to and honoring what your soul most needs at this time in your life.

I’ve started a new dream journal and have decided to spend this year keeping track of my dreams in order to hear the voice of my soul more clearly. How about you? In celebration of 1/1/11, choose one, manageable thing you could do almost every day to say to your sweet Self “I’m here! I’m paying attention! I care about you! Your needs matter!”