Showing Up for Your Own Life

Five days of courage-making and it's time to bring it back home, savoring every poem, every testimonial, all the questions and tears, moments of uncertainty as well as clarity.  In the presence of such love, integrity and generosity, I felt fearless and unburdened. 

Now that I am home, I am sitting with, digesting and breathing into the whole experience (as it is now inside me as a delicious memory). One of the questions that emerges is:  

What does it mean to show up courageously for your own life?

Sophiehalloween 011 This is a photo of Sophie, the dog/furchild of my friend Barb, all dolled up for Halloween. She is unequivocally showing up as herself, (minus the ladybug costume, of course) every day, a little firecracker of joy and love. 

Sophie is a fearless English bulldog who is lavishly adored and cared for; and she is an equally loving, playful, affectionate creature. Maybe it's the simple fact of a dog's life, but maybe it's also the amazing love and nurturing she gets from Barb that allows her to give it back so generously.

I don't think Sophie worries about being inadequate, or successful enough; she is a natural mindfulness teacher. She expresses her authentic doggy-ness without hesitation or apology, and seems quite pleased with herself along the way. She doesn't question her skills or self-worth, and seems utterly content to roll over on her back and wait patiently (or persistently demand) to be loved on. 

Maybe we can each try to apply some of Sophie's wisdom and fearlessness, joy and courage. 

Take me to the breaking of a beautiful dawn
Take me to the place where we come from
Take me to the end so I can see the start
There's only one way to mend a broken heart

Take me to the place where I don't feel so small
Take me where I don't need to stand so tall
Take me to the edge so I can fall apart
There's only one way to mend a broken heart

–Wailin Jennys, from "Beautiful Dawn"