Don’t Give Yourself Away

The morning after….

LOL — that used to mean something entirely different than it does now in my year of turning into my 70th decade!

And still, the morning after has great significance, even if it is just another day that began with my moving with the earth on its continual journey around the sun as the dark slips away to the west in the universe’s endless game of Chase the Sun!.

We shared our anniversary dinner with C.C.’s brother, M and his wife, also an M who are visiting from out-of-town. It was a lovely interlude and opportunity to get to know them better — they were part of our wedding celebration which made it even more fun!

I cooked, we chatted, did not drink copious amounts of wine — we do grow wiser as we age!

It was also a work-day for me yesterday which meant, in between Zoom meetings and writing a briefing note on the imperative of reducing long-term unemployment, I baked bread, made Carrot Ginger Soup and a Lemon Cake.

In the process, I discovered an interesting challenge. — If you put the formed bread into the proofing oven for its second rise, and then forget about it for 2 and a half hours, the buns that should have risen to perfect little individual rolls which butted up against each other in the pan but didn’t overwhelm their neighbours, become one big gooey mass of over-proofed dough.

You gotta pay attention!

It’s like a marriage.

If I do nothing to enrich, nurture and nourish our union, I risk it becoming a big blob of ooey, gooey nothingness that does not feel, look or even taste good to either of us. Without appropriate watching and tending to ensure the rough spots aren’t growing rougher, or the thin spots weaker, we risk losing the connection, joy and love which form the foundation of our ‘I Do’s’.

In between working, when I was cooking, I listened to Julia Louis Dreyfus interview Jane Fonda on her podcast, Wiser than Me (it’s a great podcast btw. She only interviews women over the age of 70). In the interview Jane Fonda, who is now 85, shares how she has learned she cannot be in a committed relationship with a man again. She misses the sex, she says, but she doesn’t miss losing herself into her need to become whomever she thinks the man wants her to be.

In a marriage, at least in mine, the greatest gift I give myself is when I remain as myself and continue to grow myself – and our marriage. That isn’t always easy.

I like to please. I am culturized to want to ‘make a man happy’ and to believe ‘the man matters – more.’

It’s the more that has always tripped me up because, when I let go of being me by believing, and acting, like his needs and wants and opinions are more important than mine, resentment and anger fester.

I’d like to say I’ve learned how not to do that, the lose myself that is, but the truth is, I am, just like our marriage, a constant work in progress.

For our union to work, I must stay vigilant and committed to becoming all of me without losing any of me to all of him. I can give love, commitment, compassion, caring, joy, freely, but in that giving, I cannot give myself away.

It’s a lesson I keep growing into as I grow deeper and deeper into becoming the all of who I am when I stand fearlessly in Love with all of me — and that includes the woman who has created big ooey gooey messes and mistakes. It’s not the messes I’ve made that define me, it’s what I’m willing to do to mop up my mess and create better, every time.


Anniversary Notes

C.C. and I have been married 8 years today.

At my 60th birthday party, when he got down on bended knee in front of about 40 people to ask me to marry him, I called him an ‘azzhole’ and said I’d have to think about it. (I know. Not my finest hour.)

I don’t like surprises.

And this is what I’ve learned about me and surprises. I don’t like surprises because I feel vulnerable, and unsafe, when I don’t know what’s coming next.

Almost 15 years living with C.C. you’d think I’d have grown more comfortable with not knowing what’s coming next.

I’m not sure I have.

I like to be prepared. To know what I’m going to say. Heck, even what others are going to say even before they say it.

Unreasonable I know, but that’s a fact.

It has nothing to do with the other or what they’re doing. It’s got everything to do with me and what I fear.

I don’t like to look foolish. Stupid. Not knowledgeable. Not ‘in the know’. Not part of the ‘in crowd’.

Eight years of marriage have taught me that there are so many things I do not know it’s foolish, stupid even, to think I know it all or to want to know it all. As Rilke suggests, it is in living the questions, being willing to step into the unknown, that the answers no longer become necessary. Because in living the questions, I/we are creating our own unique path to living into the answer, which will appear, or not, when the time is right.

Eight years of marriage have taught me that The Contract is a piece of paper. Marriage is the commitment to never burn, rip apart or tear up that piece of paper. I can use the contract as a white flag to ask for time-out or forgiveness, or understanding or even just a hug or shoulder to cry on. I never have the right to use it as a red flag to entice anger, or to stick daggers into my beloved’s back as I dance out of the way of the angry words I’ve launched into his heart. Marriage does not give me the right to tear him apart to build myself up.

Eight years of marriage have taught me that for this union to remain in a state of homeostasis, I must put into it what I want out of it and sometimes, I must be willing to do ‘the more’ so that my beloved can find his way through the less and vise-versa.

Eight years of marriage have taught me that if I am not clear on what I want, or when I stay silent because I fear saying what is on my heart, the waters in which we float our boat called ‘wedded bliss’ will be a tumultous turmoil of tossy-turvy waves trying their best to capsize us into the waters of discord and despair.

And, eight years of marriage have taught me that even on the darkest days, when we let Love guide us, the sun will keep shining, the moon will keep glowing and the stars will come out at night waiting for us to move beyond the despair that has clouded our hearts to the truth. Love Always Wins.


TO Fall With Grace

As delicate as an apology
exhaled into the hope
of being embraced in forgiveness,
Autumn leaves fall, without regret, 
into the promise
of memory's grace.

I took the photo this morning on my walk with Beaumont. As I sauntered further along the path through the grasses and into the trees, the line, “as delicate as a breath” wrote itself in my mind.

I wondered if I’d remember it by the time I got home.

As soon as I opened the photo, it flowed up and out of my body, through my fingertips, onto the keyboard and then the screen.

Without trying to hold on to them, or make sense of their meaning, or force them into order, I let more words follow.

And I smile. Because without even realizing it, ‘breath’ was transformed to ‘apology’.

The words (and the change of breath to apology) may seem random. Unconnected to this moment right now, but I know they’re not.

I often think there’s an equation for life’s journey. It’s not as simple as A (what we do) + B (what the world does) = C (the value of a life well-lived)

It’s more like,

[A + (Time/Events/Reactions/Unfinished business/Messy places/Wounds and Warts) + (Self-Awareness) + Self-Acceptance]

divided by

Temperment + Environment + Life Skills + Life Lessons + Life adaptations


the beauty experienced in all the moments adding up to a life well lived

Which is really just my very complicated way of saying, Life is messy. Humans are messier. Messes are inevitable. It’s our responsibility to clean up our own messes.

Which is why I had to apologize to my beloved last night for something I’d said that was not delivered with grace or kindness.

And here’s the messy part…

I’d really like to justify my actions with all sorts of caveats like, “But… you said/you did/you were…”

Fact is, regardless of what another person does, I am 100% accountable for my words and actions (thoughts too).

When I am out of line, it is not because of another person crossing the line. No matter how much I’d like to make them the problem, when I respond without integrity, I have crossed my own line of how to live my life. And making someone else’s stuff a reason for my bad behaviour is an excuse to not be accountable.

Ha. Says the critter. But you were in your rights…. You felt….. They did…

Yada. Yada. Yada.

And while all that may be true (the stories we tell on others are often a way to not have to tell the truth on ourselves) I am still and always… you guessed it… 100% responsible for how I respond.

No matter how heated the moment, or how hurt I am, or upset, or confused, or angry, or whatever else I may be feeling, I am 100% accountable for how I respond. And no matter how I’m feeling, I never have the right to be unkind or cruel or mean or dismissive of another or disrespectful or anything that would make another feel small or less than or dispirited or that we are not both fellow travellers worthy of respect and kindness on this messy journey of life.

I acted out of line last night.

This morning, nature beckoned me to fall with grace into the moment. Embraced in the beauty of my messy human nature, the sun shone bright, the trees whispered and the grasses swayed in harmony. And as I breathed into the delicate nature of the morning, I felt myself falling effortlessly into the beautiful messy of life flowing all around, lifted up by the beautiful grace of Love.

Weaving Our Way Home

I am home now. After two-weeks away, we drove back over the weekend, stopping along the way in the Okanagon wine-country for some tastings and relaxation.

My heart is full.

The time with my daughter and her family, including newborn Ivy, was pure love.

My heart is heavy.

We are back on this side of the Rockies.

In wine country, C.C. and I rented a delightful Air BnB for three nights. We visited Bench 1775 Winery where we married five years ago, as well as a couple of other favourites and a new one too.

Wine tasting at Nichol Vineyard

It was a beautiful, relaxing respite.

It was also the shortened version of the trip we’d planned for our anniversary in April that was side-lined by Covid.

Covid changes are visible everywhere in wine country. There are limits on the number of people allowed in the tasting rooms at a time. Screens in front of the servers and social distance circles on the floor. Our favourite bistro at Liquidity is closed – though you do get a gift of a wonderful bag of fresh veggies from their garden when you purchase wine.

And yet, despite of and because of the changes, there is a beautiful, relaxed, slowed down pace to it all.

On Sunday, the last winery we visited was a new one for us, Nighthawk Vineyards. Daniel and Christy, the owners, were on hand to pour and share their stories of life as ‘farmers’ as Daniel calls it.

As we sipped and asked questions and Daniel shared his love of wine-making and farming, which he discovered 9 years ago when they purchased the property, we felt the warmth of the late afternoon on our skin and savoured the view of the small lake at the edge of their property tucked between the hills that surround their property.

It was an enthralling and inspiring sojourn.

Their two adult sons also work with them, creating a beautiful story full of the mystique and mystery of viticulture soaked in their love of family and their desire to create wines and experiences that reflect their deep commitment to the earth and environment and exceptional customer service.

The reflecting pool at Liquidity

Sitting in the late afternoon sun, savouring their delicious offerings, breathing deeply of the bouquets of the wine dancing on our taste buds and the gentle late afternoon breeze caressing our faces, I felt my body relax into itself as I said a little prayer of gratitude afor Love and life and people who create with such passion and integrity and share their gifts so graciously.

And when we were done, We drove back down the mountainside towards our little cottage, our hearts full of this time together.

The view from Bench 1775 – where we got married

When C.C. surprised me with his plan for our trip home, I whined. I wanted to get home. To be in-place again. I was tired, and not all that happy about stopping off.

I’m so glad he was patient and persistent and wise enough to know, I was tired enough to not know what I truly needed. The respite in wine country was perfect!

Home again, today I unpack, take a long walk with Beaumont and settle into being in-place.

While in wine country, I spent the mornings at our cottage, sitting on the deck painting and creating in my art journal. As with all the pages in this series, one of my mother’s prayer cards is collaged into the background – a now invisible thread weaving her prayers for everyone.

The text woven into the painting reads:

“We are the memory keepers. The weavers of threads of beauty and mystery and wonder into the warp and weft of life.

We are the story-tellers. The speakers of truth shimmering with grace and love into the tapestry of life unfolding as we journey through time and space.

We are the story-creators. The women gathered at the well throughout the ages. The women dancing around the fire, tending to the vestal flames of life on earth. Bearing life. Gestating. Birthing. Communing. Divining. Weaving.”


PS. I am back home but not back regularly to these pages. I am relaxing over the summer, divining my schedule, and giving myself space to create so will be posting irregularly. I hope you visit and leave a comment. It is always such a gift to hear your voices and ‘see’ you here.

An Image of Love

A collective painting. Created at our wedding celebration, April 25, 2015 by everyone who was there.

This painting tells a story. It is a story of Love. Family. Friends. Marriage. Union. Communion. Hearts intertwining and lives weaving together to form a beautiful, vibrant tapestry of life today and everyday.

It is the painting my beloved and I created, along with our family and friends who had come together on this day, five years ago, to celebrate our union in marriage.

The day began with pouring rain. Cats and dogs as they say.

I was disappointed. We’d chosen Bench 1775 Winery in Naramata, BC because of their deck overlooking Okanagan Lake and the incredible views it offered of the vineyards, the lake and the surrounding mountains.

By 11am I had to make the decision — we would not be getting married on the deck. We’d have to set-up in the tasting room and the tent we’d had erected for the occasion.

By 2pm everything was ready and I raced back to Therapy Vineyards Guesthouse, where we were staying, to get ready. (I know. I left it kind of late but I really wanted everything to look ‘just so’, even if we weren’t going to be out on the deck).

While Charles and his son got ready at the Bench, my two daughters, step-daughter and I laughed and drank champagne as we got dressed at Therapy. The girls did each other’s make-up and mine. Ross, our photographer quietly took photos and Tim, C.C. and my best man, ensured we had everything we needed. Though, getting to the ‘deck’ on time was not high on the agenda, we definitely had fun and were looking ‘smokin’ hot’ by the time we were ready to go.

At quarter to four, the time we were supposed to leave to get to the ‘church’ on time for a 4pm wedding, we still weren’t quite ready. I jokingly said it was, ‘my day’ and I’d be late if I wanted to! (queue It’s my party… though the only thing I would have possibly cried about on that day was the weather but even it seemed to be lifting the shroud of grey and mist that had enveloped the lake and valley all day).

At 10 to 4 a friend text me from Bench 1775 where our guests were all seated, inside, waiting for the big moment. Three simple words. “The sun’s out.” Followed by a series of smiley face emoticons.

I promptly text back. “Tell them to move the chairs outside.”

Momentary silence. And then she text back. “Ok. Done.”

She stood up, called out to the 50+ people gathered for the celebration and said, “Louise wants to move the wedding outside. Everybody pick up your chair and move!”

And so they did. Amidst lots of laughter and shaking of their heads and possibly a few, “Seriously?  What on earth is she thinking?”

Five years later, that day is still indelibly written on my memory. It was a day of laughter, joy, friendship and familial bonds shining in the sunlight that streamed in through a gap in the mountains lining the lake on the western side.

It was a day of vows committed beneath a cerulean sky dotted with fluffy white clouds, vows that continue to reflect and inform and enrich our marriage today.

It was a day to say, I Do.

As I sit in our home today, I feel the power of that ‘I Do’  resonating throughout my being. There is no one I’d rather be sequestered in solitude with during this time of Covid’s forced isolation.

While this virus might be coursing around the globe, our home is filled with the love and wonder of that day. It is imbued with the spirit of the hearts of everyone who gathered together to witness, to celebrate, to share, to dance and laugh and… to create an Image of Love with C.C. and me.

The painting we collectively created hangs on the wall as you enter our front door. It is a reminder of the one thing that endures, sustains. nourishes and abides no matter the weather or the times, no matter how dark or easy the path, no matter where in the world we are.




When Your Home is Your Boat

There is a story about a man who travels through a desert searching for escape. He stumbles over a dune and there at the base of the dune, he sees a river flowing, it’s waters sparkling in the sun. On the other side, he sees what looks like the land of paradise. Lush. Green. Full of trees heavy with fruit.

He races to the river’s edge and drinks deeply.

He stays there for awhile, catching his breath, letting his body grow strong again.

Eventually, he gets up, scours the water’s edge for wood and makes a raft.

Happily, he rows across to the other side. He climbs off his raft and sets off to explore paradise.

But first, he decides to take his raft with him. Just in case.

Eventually, he grows tired. Bone weary tired. The raft weighs so much. But he cannot put it down. ‘What if I come upon another river that needs crossing?’ he asks himself.

And so he continues to stumble along until finally, he cannot take another step. He falls to the ground and his boat falls with him.

We are all at home now. At least those of us who have a home in which to shelter-in-place. And those who are not ‘out there’ saving lives, keeping us fed, keeping us safe and secure.

We are all at home.

What are you carrying on your back as you shelter-in-place? Does it serve you well?

Yesterday, I spent a few hours cleaning out the basement. My cleaning out/up began with the realization that it’s mid-April (already) and the Christmas boxes are still sitting at the bottom of the stairs, outside the storage room door. (I’d give you the story about why they weren’t on the other side of the door, but it’s not all that interesting.)

Fortunately, along with the boxes, I can now put away that tired old excuse-filled story and relax.

I feel lighter. More accomplished. More peaceful. More spacious.

And all it took to alleviate the weight of those boxes of glitter and boughs on my peace of mind, was to put them in their place.

For me, it is one of the hardest parts of our self-isolation. Whatever I’m carrying, worry, fear, anxiety, guilt, anger, resentment…, grows into a heavy-burden when I do nothing about it. Because I am sharing this space with my beloved, sometimes, the presence of the undone, unmentioned, unspoken creates choppy waters between us.

Fact is, I think I was kind of secretly wishing, hoping, thinking, he’d put all the boxes away. I mean, I took Christmas down. Why can’t he put it all back where it belongs? You with me?

Probably because his COPD makes tasks that require lifting and moving of things very challenging. Probably because it hurts him to breathe when he over-exerts.

It does not hurt me.

What hurts is when my mind goes round and round in circles of discontent, nattering about the ‘why me’s?’ of everyday living.

When your home is your boat, it’s not just what you carry with you that makes a difference in how smooth or choppy the waters upon which you sail. It’s also about how lovingly you navigate the messy places too.

Yesterday, I got rid of a weight on my shoulders that had no purpose other than to weigh me down. In getting the job done,  I released myself of the guilt-riddled anxiety and self-defeating grumbles of resentment that arose every time I walked down the stairs and saw all the boxes sitting by the basement door.

Today, the skies are clear and my sails are set for smooth sailing.

I feel lighter of heart. More expansive in nature.

And all it took was the willingness (and a wee bit of elbow grease) to right my boat by ridding it of the ego-driven thoughts and things that were weighing me down.

When your home is your boat and your boat is your home, carrying unwanted baggage makes the journey a struggle between ego and will or compassion and Love.

When your home is your boat and your boat is your home, jettisoning the things you know do not serve you well, creates space for harmony, joy, peace and intimacy to blossom. In the beautiful garden of their nature, you are free to enjoy the waters of your day sparkling in the light of Love.

The question is: Are you willing to put down the things you are carrying that do not create harmony, joy, peace and intimacy as you sail through your day?




Beauty in the rubble.


My beloved and I had one of those conversations last night… you know, the difficult kind where all you really want to do is dump your unease, your fear, your shallow breathing on the one you love, if only so you can feel relieved of the burdens weighing down your heart.

Yeah. That kind. Where grace takes a back seat to your drive to take your unease out on the one you love.

It is one of the challenges of sequestered solitude. Being together 24/7 is an unusual circumstance.

The mind does not like unusual circumstances.

It prefers the predictable. The known. The road most travelled. Especially where human relations are concerned.

The challenge… Sequestered solitude/quarantine/stay-at-home/sheltered-in-place is such a new circumstance, it can be easy to mistake the comfort and ease of travelling together on the road most travelled for a rut.

For me, if there’s one thing I want to avoid, it’s being stuck in a rut. And, because my ruts are often constructed of unspoken words and thoughts not shared and dreams and fears unexpressed, I end up convincing myself that the only way out is to lob a few word-grenades at my beloved to blow up my silence.

Yeah. Not pretty. Nor all that smart. Because, if you’re like my beloved and me, when I lob a couple of word-grenades at him, he doesn’t like to back down. And then… You guessed it. Game on.

We all hold in our minds, stories of how these battles are won and lost. How fraught they are with minefields and how the best defence is a strong offence.

In moments of discord, however, flinging your words like a heat-seeking missile at the heart of the one you love is not an act of self-defence. It’s an act of aggression.

Yeah. It was that kind of discussion.

Not pretty in the midst of the fray. Grace-filled and loving in its denouement.

Compassion is key.

Compassion for your beloved, and yourself.

Compassion that awakens the grace within to stop, mid-sentence and acknowledge how your behaviour is contributing to the discord. How your fears and uncertainty are the shaky foundation unleashing your angst with all that is going on, and not a statement of anything shaky in your Love for them.

Compassion that allows you to look at yourself and your behaviour with loving-kindness and to look at your beloved through eyes that see ‘the why’ of your love for them, not the why not’s.

These are scary, challenging times. Not just on pocketbooks and bank accounts, jobs and businesses, health and well-being. But on our hearts, minds and bodies. All around us, there is uncertainty. Lacking clarity, uncertainty gives rise to fear. Fear can become a powerful force of destruction when it is not surrounded by Love.

My beloved and I had an uncomfortable conversation last night. It had begun with a relatively benign event that grew into a mountain of discord by days end. Our conversation didn’t start out pretty, but then, when word-grenades are used to ‘open up dialogue’, the ensuing conversation seldom is.

Trapped in the rubble of our discord, we had a choice to make. Dig deeper into our individual foxholes firing shots at one another until one of us eventually falls into an uneasy sleep. Or, join together and dig into the rubble to unearth the exquisite beauty of the truth that sits mounted like a beautiful jewel at the centre of our relationship. Love. It binds us together. It makes our lives and hearts sparkle.

Sometimes, because of our habitual responses to stress, change, uncertainty, we will default to our positions of weakness, rather than strength. And while in our heart of hearts we know neither of us wants to hurt the other or cause the other pain, when weakened by fear, it’s easy to forget that truth.

It is in those moments we must both choose to let go of our need to be right so that we can give in to our desire to grow together in deep, intimate, sacred Love.

My beloved and I fell into the muck of deep, difficult conversation last night. I am grateful. It opened our hearts to deeper, more intimate connection, not just in this time of Covid but in all the times of our lives together.







Covid 19 – I’m keeping my distance.

Even after baking fresh bread. After making a big batch of mushroom soup and a beef stew. Even after packing up my paints and brushes, my papers and ephemera, I decided not to go.

I was going off to a week-long artist’s retreat in the foothills of the Rockies today.

Yesterday, I called and said I wasn’t coming.

My beloved has a cold. He also has a chronic medical condition. He’s in the high-risk group.

But that’s not really why I cancelled.

I cancelled because I did not want to worry. I did not want to fear inadvertently bringing disease into our home.

I cancelled because I love him.

I made the decision after I saw that Alberta’s number of cases had doubled yesterday. Yes, they are all travel-related but, one of the others at the retreat will be going back and forth to the airport a couple of times for work while I’m there. I do not want to lay the burden of my worry on my friend. And, if you look at the statistics from around the world, this virus exponentially increases on a daily basis. Travel is its gateway. Airports one of its conduits.

It wasn’t an easy decision. I love being at this retreat centre. Savour time spent in the foothills, surrounded by nature’s wild beauty. And I particularly like creating with these friends.

But I couldn’t do it.

To dive deep into my creative essence I need to let go of ‘worldly’ concerns, of worry, of anything but creative expression.

I couldn’t do that when no matter how deep I breathe into the moment, I know my beloved is sick and I am not doing everything I can to protect his health.

So, I decided to practice ‘social distancing’. I hadn’t heard the term before my eldest daughter sent me a link to an article in The Atlantic, Coronavirus: Cancel Everything. In it, the case for social distancing is clearly laid out. In the data, it’s also hard to argue with the fact that to stem Covid 19’s spread, we must change our behaviours.

Yesterday, I scrolled through many articles on Covid 19 and how to prepare for its inevitable presence in the community.

I was looking for reasons why it was okay for me to go.

There were many.

None of them out-weighed my responsibility to the one I love. My responsibility to do the right thing in these difficult and challenging times to create better for everyone. A week ago, I probably wouldn’t have given it a second thought. I would have gone.

In just one week, the sinister reality of Covid 19’s presence has darkened the globe and the lives of 14 people here in Alberta, 7 of whom were reported on yesterday. It’s impact cannot be ignored.

This isn’t because the media have created fear and paranoia. They are simply reporting the facts — Covid 19 is killing people and there are things we can do to mitigate against its impact. Media are also not the ones telling people to hoard toilet paper and hand sanitizer. Human nature’s doing that.

I’m doing what I can.

Sure, it’s possible that my response is over the top for the situation right now. It’s possible it is predicated upon the recent passing of my mother and death’s heavy cloak of sorrow clouding my vision.

That is all possible, but none of it outweighs the reality of Covid 19’s lethal capacity to take life.

If I can do anything to stop it from hurting the ones I love, I must.

It doesn’t mean I won’t be creating. I have a beautiful studio at home. It’s french doors open out to the trees lining the river which I can watch flow from where I sit at my work table. It has a fireplace and all the supplies I need to create. It also offers peace of mind. And when it comes to creating, peace of mind is the foundation of my expression.

So, for the next few days I shall be ‘pretending’ to be on an artist’s retreat. I’ll go for long walks (Beaumont will be very grateful as he is not allowed at the retreat centre). I’ll make lemon tea with honey. Share my fresh bread and mushroom soup and other meals with my beloved.

It will be a different experience than I had anticipated and I’m good with that. Different doesn’t make it ‘not as good as’. Different means it will include the one I love and share my life with. It means having the peace of mind of knowing I am expressing my love for him the best way I know how. By taking care.

I am grateful.

Love Will Never Let You Down

“Smoke rises. Tears fall. Hearts break.
Doors open. Time passes.
Love will never let you down.”

The words drifted into my mind as effortlessly as the smoke rising from the incense stick burning on my desk in the corner of my studio.

When I was a young girl in my teens, I loved a boy with all my heart.

He broke it.

And then, I met another boy and I broke his.

I kept falling in and out of breaking hearts and feeling like mine was broken until I learned to not fear my brokenness but to celebrate and cherish every crack and scar of time. To dance with the light that did get through and to illuminate the dark corners with Love.

As Leonard Cohen so famously sang, “There is a crack in everything. That’s how the light gets in.”

I used to think that to know love, to be in love, to have love, I had to have a perfect heart and be perfect in all my expressions of this thing called ‘being in love’.

I thought I had to ‘win’ another’s heart by only showing the parts of my heart I thought were worth showing. I thought that to win someone’s love, I had to hide my cracks and scars.

Time and the constant breaking open of my heart has taught me that fearless love means loving my cracks unfilled and leaving my scars unpolished.

It means stepping joyfully and courageously into the dark corners of my fear I will never be enough and trusting that Love will never let me down.

And it never has — Let me down.

It’s just given me more cracks for the light to get in and more scars to strengthen the weave and warp of my beautiful tapestry of life.

A broken heart is an open heart and an open heart is a loving heart. 

May we all live with our hearts wide open, loving this beautiful, precious life in all its cracks and scars.



Stormy Take Outs

It was a day of rest. A day to savour time by the fire. Chatting. Reading. Playing crib. (I won’t mention the fact C.C. skunked me! Cad! 🙂 ) And, a day to appreciate the power of nature and the benefits of electricity.

It was at 2pm the lights flickered and then went out. Completely. For almost 3 hours, a large swathe of Vancouver Island was without power. Storm. Power surges. Faulty lines. Not sure what the problem was but it was rather exciting for a while with just the fire and candles to add light in the storm.

Inside, at The Lodge at Middle Beach, we were warm and cozy. Outside the winds howled. The surf surged and trees danced in the storm.

By 5pm the power began to reappear. On. Off. Until after about 10 attempts, it stayed on.

I had taken a walk on the beach earlier. The wind blew fiercely. The waves roared and the tide crashed against the shoreline. Within fifteen minutes, the path I’d taken along the beach was awash and I had to find the high tide trail back. It was wild and beautiful and intoxicating.

When I returned, my pants were soaked but my upper body was dry as I had worn one of the bright yellow slickers the Lodge provides.

I felt exhilarated. Revived by the wind and sea and salt air.

This morning, the storm has died down. The skies are a misty grey, white flecks dotted with blue struggle to break through. Rain still falls. Soft and gentle, not the skin prickling sensations of yesterday.

The power is on.

We had a delicious dinner last night in The Great Room at Longbeach Lodge. Their generator had kept the kitchen running, albeit at limited capacity, throughout the afternoon and by 8pm when we arrived, everything was back on. We chatted and listened to the waves and savoured the delectable food and toasted our ‘togetherness’.

And my heart expanded, my breath deepened and my thinking mind drifted effortlessly into silence.

Inside me, I feel the ebb and flow of the waves pulling me into stillness. I feel myself slowing down, once again becoming attuned to my heartbeat, the blood flowing through my veins, the feeling of my bones grounded in space and time, connected to the ‘everythingness’ that is all around.

I breathe. In. Out.

I feel my breath move throughout my body. Energizing. Life-giving. Connected.

I feel my breath move down, down, down into my legs. Into my feet. Tingling against my soles. I feel it move through me into the ground beneath me. And I say a silent prayer of gratitude.

My body is present. I am aware. Alive. Awed.

Outside the wind continues to howl.

Inside, I am rested. Peaceful. Connected. Present.

Life is an adventure. Life is grand.