Tag Archive | awareness

The Miracle of the World <3

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“If you look the right way, you can see that the whole world is a garden.”
Frances Hodgson Burnett

This quote couldn’t be more true! Everywhere we look, there is some kind of beauty. It doesn’t matter what the weather is like, what season we’re in the midst of, what mood we’re in, if we’re healthy or sick, grieving or in some other kind of pain, homeless or live in a mansion, financially rich or poor, Alone, lonely, surrounded by others,
whatever struggles we have, there is some form of beauty to soak up, cherish, and celebrate. ❤

Celebrating beauty is what I’m doing here. Here are my pictures and some of my favorite quotes!

😀

“This world, after all our science and science, is still a miracle: wonderful, inscrutable, magical and more, to whosoever will think it.” ~ Thomas Dekker

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(I was waiting for a bus today in the freezing cold but it was well worth it because the scenery is so beautiful and I was surrounded by adorable little sparrows! I noticed the cute little fuzzy heads they have and the caprice of their tender wings, fluttering all around)

“Oh, the wild joys of living! the leaping from rock up to rock, 
The strong rending of boughs from the fir-tree, the cool silver shock 
Of the plunge in a pool’s living water.” ~
Robert Browning

“And forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet and the winds long to play with your hair.” ~
Kahlil Gibran

“To see is to forget the name of the thing one sees.” ~ Paul Valéry 

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Life is what we make it so let’s make it beautiful.

Live everyday and find the extraordinary in the ordinary.

“Normal day, let me be aware of the treasure you are.  Let me learn from you, love you, bless you before you depart.  Let me not pass you by in quest of some rare and perfect tomorrow.  Let me hold you while I may, for it may not always be so. One day I shall dig my nails into the earth, or bury my face in the pillow, or stretch myself taut, or raise my hands to the sky and want, more than all the world, your return.” ~
Mary Jean Iron

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 “There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.” ~ Albert Einstein

“Find the good and praise it.” ~Alex Haley

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“For each new morning with its light,
For rest and shelter of the night,
For health and food, for love and friends,
For everything Thy goodness sends.”
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

”The best way to pay for a lovely moment is to enjoy it.” ~Richard Bach

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(my adorable girl, Isis Summerjo)

“I’ll be back in the high life again
All the doors I closed one time will open up again” ~Steve Winwood

“O, with what freshness, 
what solemnity and beauty, 
is each new day born; 
as if to say to insensate man, 
‘Behold!
thou hast one more chance! 
Strive for immortal glory!'” ~
Harriet Beecher Stowe

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“Today a new sun rises for me; everything lives, everything is animated, everything seems to speak to me of my passion, everything invites me to cherish it.” ~Anne De Lenclos 

~Heaven is Earth~

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(night in the city)

“There’s beauty up above and things we never take notice of
You wake up and suddenly you’re in love.” ~ Billy Ocean

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(me!<3 <3)

“And I guess we never learn.
Go through life parched and empty,
Standin’ knee deep in a river and dyin’ of thirst.” ~ “Standing Knee Deep In A River” (Dying of Thirst) 

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“Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated.” 
Confucius

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“I like living. I have sometimes been wildly, despairingly, acutely miserable, racked with sorrow, but through it all I still know that just to be alive is a grand thing.”
~Agatha Christie

“Be glad of life, because it gives you the chance to love and to work and to play and to look up at the stars.”~
Henry Van Dyke

“I love this crazy, tragic,
Sometimes almost magic,
Awful, beautful life” ~Darryl Worley ♥

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“I’m thankful for a pair of shoes that feel really good on my feet; I like my shoes.
I’m thankful for the birds; I feel like they’re singing just for me when I get up in the morning… Saying, ‘Good morning, John. You made it, John.’
I’m thankful for the sea breeze that feels so good right now, and the scent of jasmine when the sun starts going down.
I’m thankful…”
~Johnny Cash

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“Some people have a wonderful capacity to appreciate again and again, freshly and naively, the basic goods of life, with awe, pleasure, wonder, and even ecstasy.” ~
Abraham Maslow

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The only difference between an extraordinary life and an ordinary one is the extraordinary pleasures you find in ordinary things.

~Veronique Vienne

I hope you find the beauty in each moment no matter how low your mood is or how much pain you are experiencing or how bored or stressed or distracted you are. We can’t always be happy but we can find something in each moment to grasp and hold and see the joy in.

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(I don’t eat steaks [unless they’re vegan ones] but this building is so pretty, all lit up and surrounded with people)

Let’s surrender to each fleeting moment and absorb all the beauty and love Each one
provides.

Much love to you. ❤

Xoxo Kim ❤

3:00AM

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“Let’s cherish every moment we have been giving; the time is passing by…” ~ Kool & the Gang

Hello,  My name is Henry Bins and I have Henry Bins. Lol jk That’s an inside joke to myself. ;-D

I read a fiction book called “3:00AM” about a man named Henry Bins and he has a very rare sleep disorder which was named after him because he is one of three people in the world to have it and he was the first to be diagnosed.

He says “My name is Henry Bins and I have Henry Bins!” lol

It’s like a mixture of comedy, suspense, thriller, adventure, drama, love, mystery…I guess you can say. I love it!

The disorder causes him to sleep 23 out of 24 hours a day. It’s beyond his control. He wakes up every morning at 3:00am then just drops wherever he is at 4:00am and goes to sleep.

He had this disorder his whole life. It’s no walk in the park for him but he learned to live with it. He learned to adjust and cherish every moment he has awake.

His mom left him and his dad when he was a child and his dad brought him up and loves him unconditionally. He always wanted Henry to be as normal as possible and he made sure he was educated and well socialized. He would teach him reading and writing and he would bring children to their house at 3:00 am to play with Henry. Henry is about 36 years old in the novel, I think, and he’s as “normal” as can be.

He uses the Internet and goes out running and listens to music. But every single minute, literally, has to be planned out so he can get the most out of his life and be home safely in bed before he drops.

It’s also a murder mystery, this book. One morning just before 4:00 he was in his bedroom and he heard a woman scream like she was being murdered. Because she was being murdered. 

They live near Washington D.C.

He looked out his window at her house across the street and saw Connor Sullivan,  44th president of the United States, walking out and the president looked up and saw Henry! Then Henry dropped to the floor asleep. And woke up all stiff and injured. He doesn’t drift off to sleep around 4:00am, he will literally drop and sleep with absolutely no control. He already ended up in an emergency room occasionally because of dropping to sleep and being injured when he was out places too late.

He learned to make sure he’s in bed right before 4:00am.

There’s no known cure for this (fictional) disorder.

Because of knowing his time is limited, he carefully plans to make the most of literally every single minute he’s awake. He is mindful of all the ways he can have fun, of all the beauty around him. He cherishes each and every moment he’s awake. He knows at 4:00am he will be asleep until the next day. He had a few girlfriends at different points but it never worked out because they couldn’t handle his disorder. He says the only thing worse than being or having Henry Bins is being in love with Henry Bins. 

He plays video games, listens to music, runs for fun, reads books, checks out online dating websites, plays cards with his dad, has a stock business, a cat, and is generally happy. He pretty much has a full life. He sometimes wonders what it would be like if he did not have this disorder. He wonders if he would be married with kids but he knows he can’t be wasting minutes sulking or wondering “what if…???”

Henry says:

“I force myself to stay in the moment. I don’t have time for the past or the future. My life is the present. For many years I played the what if game. What if I had a normal life? Where would I be? Would I be married? Would I have kids? But then twenty or thirty minutes would be gone. Wasted. Thinking about things that I can’t change. That are unchangeable.”

See how this can apply to most of us to some extent? Who doesn’t at least once think “What if….?” We may think what if we were different or our lives were somehow different…what if we made a different choice, weren’t struggling with things beyond our control, looked different, were married or married to someone else, chose to go to school instead of certain jobs, did not have to put up with certain people, had more money…..

But all we have is now and what we currently are. It’s good to work to better ourselves but not fret or obsess over what we can’t change, what could have or should have been, or negatively compare our lives to others. 

He doesn’t have much but what he does have is enough. He has one hour each day and he knows how to make the most of it.

Henry wakes up and he says, about the green numbers on his electronic clock,

“The glowing green embers also tell me it’s 3:01am. 
One minute gone.” 

Three minutes later after going online and checking his accounts, he says:

“3:04. 
Four minutes gone.”

There is a profound revelation here.

“One minute gone.”

“Two minutes gone.”

“Three minutes gone…”

(he doesn’t count down like this throughout the entire book – that may be kind of annoying lol)

Henry, because of his disorder, only has a limited amount of time so he knows not to waste any of it at all. 

Every single moment is important and worthy of being embraced. 

For every minute he must decide what he wants to do that minute, what is worth it. Does he want to read, listen to a song, play a video game, masturbate(lol he decides that at this moment it isn’t worth it)…? Each minute he does something he doesn’t really care to do is a minute wasted, a minute he can never have back. 

But guess what?! It’s not because of his sleep disorder that he only has a limited amount of time! This is true for all of us! His case is just more dramatic than most of ours but none of us has an unlimited supply of minutes awake!

One day, just like Henry Bins, we will drop except we won’t get back up again.

Henry was forced to realize this because of his condition. We are not usually forced by life circumstances to realize this to the depth that Henry is. Some people diagnosed with terminal illnesses or ones who have a near death experience see this much more deeply than probably the average person.

In some ways, his disorder allows him to even live more fully than a person without a disorder like this. What we may see as life hindering actually sets him free. To live more deeply, more completely, more sweetly than the rest.

He says

“…I spend a perfect minute watching a trawler sucked downstream by the sweeping black current. I used to wonder what it would look like during the light of day, how the water would look under a burning sun and puffy white clouds, but day didn’t exist in my world. Only night. Only darkness.”

I love this statement for a couple of reasons. It shows how much many people take for granted. The simple beauty we too often overlook.  The beauty of day and night. It shows us how we have access to mundane things we overlook everyday that some people long to have and never do. Like daylight. Some people are always in the dark. 
The next morning you wake up to the light of day, look around you and pretend you are Henry Bins finally seeing the light of day. Look with new eyes like you have never seen beauty in the sun. Isn’t it lovely?
 This statement also shows acceptance. He can’t have day where he lives in his position and he just cherishes what he does have.

He knows it’s not wise to spend his moments being concerned over stuff he can’t do much about currently. 

“The corpse of the woman continuously creeps into my thoughts as I run, but each time I am able to ward it off with a tight squeeze of my eyes and a gaze up at the starry sky. This is my time. Not hers.”

Sometimes we have to practice self-care and not put too much time and energy into other people’s problems and stuff we can’t change. This is especially poignant when we realize our time is limited. I think we all, or most of us,  grow up with the knowledge we won’t be around forever. But knowing and realizing/feeling it are two different concepts. Once we feel it to a certain depth, we may be more motivated to change our ways to live in the present moment mindfully, with gratitude.

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Since Henry’s time is especially limited, he checks his cell phone a lot for the minute. He has to so he can get back home safely and plan out how much of each thing he would like to engage in.

Since he lives near a murder scene, he is questioned by detectives. 

The one detective wonders why he almost  constantly checks his phone. She says,

“What’s one minute to the next at three in the morning?”

Henry is infuriated.

This detective does not know of Henry’s condition and he doesn’t care to explain it to her. 

Also, he made a big mistake and he does have something to hide.

He says to the reader,

“Those minutes are my life, I nearly scream. Those minutes that you take so much for granted because you get a thousand of them each day are priceless to me. Your life is measured by title, wealth, and status. My life is measured in grains of sand, trickling from one teardrop to the other.
My nostrils flare when I’m angry and I wonder if Ray feels a small gust of wind. Taking a calm breath, I ponder telling her that I’m Henry Bins and I have Henry Bins. I don’t.” 

(Ingrid Ray is the homicide detective – it’s cute because Henry and her have a little crush on each other! Lol)

At one point Henry says,

“It’s like Christmas, each minute a beautifully wrapped gift just waiting to be opened. Should I allow myself an extra minute in the shower? Could I read three more pages of my book? Run another quarter mile? Watch a YouTube video? Watch the swimming pool scene from Wild Things, twice?”

Isn’t this beautiful? Each minute of his life is a beautiful gift. Each minute itself. Every minute to him is full of wonder and possibility. If only we would all think this way quite often! 

After reading this novel I noticed a change in me even without trying. I came to have an even deeper appreciation for my minutes and became even more mindful after just reading this book once. Then I began to apply the concept consciously and intentionally even more than I used to, the concept that each minute is a gift. A perfect gift. A minute is brief, fleeting. But it’s something. And every minute matters. 

Have you ever wasted minutes? I sure have. Have you ever waited for a bus or train and just keep anxiously looking up the street as if it will make it appear or keep looking at your watch? Or keep thinking where in the hell is this bus or train? Or have you ever waited somewhere for someone to pick you up to go somewhere and when it’s nearing the hour the person should be coming for you, you don’t just sit and be peaceful, instead you feel like just getting it over with and like there’s no point in starting anything like reading or watching a movie or anything because you will be leaving soon, in just a matter of minutes?

But even five minutes is enough to be some kind of productive. One minute is.  You can read a few pages of a book, meditate, write in a journal, a draft for a blog post… If you’re waiting for a bus I don’t think I would recommend deep meditation or maybe not reading and definitely not listening to music with earphones. It’s important to be aware of your surroundings for safety purposes. I do read and listen to music while out and about, occasionally, but I don’t recommend it to others. But you can take in the scene around you or think more productive thoughts than “when is this bus coming?!” or “let’s get this over with!!!”

Those few minutes are minutes that will be lost forever. Let us cherish them completely.

I try not to waste any minute now. The thing that really got this concept to sink in is in the beginning with the “one minute gone…two minutes gone…” That’s so true. For all of us.

I’m not Henry Bins and I don’t have Henry Bins. Lol 
But just like Henry Bins, I do not have a limitless supply of minutes. I can fall asleep at 4:00am and never wake up.

It’s not likely but not impossible. I’m sure I will live to be old, old, old and hopefully indefinite life extension will be a reality and we will all live much longer. But we all have something in common with Henry Bins. 
Each minute is a gift.

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I was careful not to give away any big spoilers. This is a murder mystery but with a deeper message. I strongly recommend it. 
I made it seem really cheesy and sappy here(I’m really into cheese and sap…) but it’s really not. The sappiness is all mine. Lol It’s a fascinating work of fiction both about a murder mystery and a very rare (fictional) disorder and how the man copes and lives with it. But it also has this deeper message. 

This reminds of of a teacher I had in high school, Dr. Zhender. He always told us in every class that no amount of time is too short. 
We can learn something of value in just a few short minutes. At the end of class instead of letting us talk or stand by the door, he would make us sit and watch part of a movie for the last five or ten minutes insisting that we never waste a minute.

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And it reminds me of a professor I had in college for Sociology. Professor Grasmuck. She did the same exact thing. In college when we have an exam we can leave whenever we turn our paper in and when class ends early we often are allowed to leave. If it only takes us ten minutes to complete an exam, we can leave or if a lecture ends early, but never in her class. She made us sit there and told us to read or something or listen to her music. At the end of every class she made us listen to music saying it would do us good. If a student tried to walk out, she would yell “sit back down now!” as if we were children! Lol But I liked it; to me it seemed like an act of caring and I missed high school when we were under the authority of the teachers. In college that’s not how it is. Professor Grasmuck was always very sweet and friendly, very caring and passionate. I have always loved that about her, how moved she would be over the stuff she was teaching us, she really feels it. She was always deeply touched over injustices and the misfortunes of others and how they would help each other.  She just did not want any time wasted in her class. She wanted us to learn and take in all the music and information we could in her class. Every minute counted. Every minute counts. 

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Dr. Z, Henry Bins, & Professor Grasmuck know that every minute is a gift and a wonderful opportunity to learn and grow and cherish.

This is a great lesson to us all!

😀

Xoxo Kim

Glimpses of my authentic self

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“Don’t be afraid to be weak
Don’t be too proud to be strong
Just look into your heart, my friend
That will be the return to yourself.” ~ Enigma

For years, I struggled with depression almost every day, recurrent severe episodes on top of less but often still severe, long-term depression. It would lift, sometimes for weeks or months and I would be genuinely very happy. But it always came back. I was suicidal or wanting to die, in different degrees, nearly every day, sometimes just brief thoughts all the way to dangerous contemplation. Then it would go away and I was so happy, sure it would never return. But always, it did. My depression was not always environmental or circumstantial, although it can be triggered or worsened by environmental factors, it was sometimes more of a biochemical depression. The initial onset was triggered by things in my environment and certain insecurities but once it manifested, it wass here to stay, even when my environment was pleasant and I’m was not struggling with any specific problem. I’m not depressed as much anymore.
It’s in my genes and unpleasant situations I have experienced brought it out as the whole disorder.
This condition confused me for many years. I couldn’t understand why I was so depressed. I know why it began. Sometimes it felt like I had every problem in the world which was causing my despair. Other occasions, it seemed like everything was going amazingly well and I was still devastatingly depressed.
I often made excuses for why I was so depressed. I took every little problem I had or ever had and said that’s what was depressing me. Sometimes I exaggerated the problems, making them out to be worse, more dramatic, or more frequent than they were, to make sense of my depression.
I said it’s because I had no friends(this did truly trigger it), because my family argued, because I experienced a verbally/emotionally abusive environment previously, because I’m worthless, because my friends were arguing, because I got a low grade in class or on an exam, because I haven’t accomplished much, because it’s all too late, ….while these things were sometimes true or seemed to be, they weren’t always what triggered or caused my depression and they weren’t always as frequent or bad as I made them out to be.
Sometimes they were the culprits, but often they were just the scapegoats I used, sometimes consciously, some occasions, unconsciously, to make sense of something that made no sense to me.
They can trigger or contribute to my depression but that’s because it’s in my genes already, I’m already prone to it. And even when things are going great in other ways, I can become depressed. Those problems would likely make anyone unhappy about them but not everyone would fall into a deep, full blown suicidal/psychotic depression in the face of them.

Also, depression can make problems seem exaggerated, worse than they really are. Sometimes when I’m depressed, even just mildly depressed, I care so much about little problems or things I would never care about when I’m not depressed.

It can be completely chemical, coming on for no known reason, it can be triggered by an unpleasant environmental factor, or it can be psychological, triggered by certain thoughts I have, painful memories I dislike, an insecurity I may be struggling with, a negative self-image, a hopeless feeling about certain situations…this kind, I can sometimes reverse before it gets out of hand if I catch it quickly enough, I can change my thoughts or perceptions or attitudes before it sucks me in too deeply to where I can’t pull myself back out, when I realize my own negative thinking is the main contribution. This is a technique I learned through the years.

If you’re not susceptible to depression, you can most likely struggle with a negative thought, situation, insecurity, environmental issue….and not sink into a deep, dark place where you want to die, lose all sense of hope, joy, pleasure, energy for weeks or months. For someone with depression even while not currently depressed, these things can trigger that.

After struggling so long, off & on with depression then happiness then depression for months again I was sometimes not sure where the despair and pain ended and where I began. It became my identity after months then I would be happy then it was back. It was threaded throughout my every day, throughout me, throughout my entire existence for months. I couldn’t separate it and me. We were one and the same. Then it would end and my happiness would return to me for weeks or months. Then more depression.

When I looked into a mirror, into my own eyes, it wasn’t any kind of me I saw, it was the dark entity lurking about deep within me, all around me, crushing my body til I couldn’t stand up straight and my speech was often slow and slurred. People pointed this out occasionally. It was more alive than I was. It choked me and suffocated me for months on end. When it would finally end, sometimes, it was genuine happiness waiting for me. Sometimes, a lesser depth of depression.

I saw things I would have liked or loved if it wasn’t for the pain, the emptiness, the loneliness, and nothingness. I could detect things that would have won my heart if I were “a regular girl.” I saw things I wanted to want.

I knew which things would bring me joy if I wasn’t so worn out and wrung. And sometimes those things would bring me joy but it was tainted joy. I felt pleasure but not to the fullest until I would get happy again.

For many, many years, nearly every day except when my depression would lift for hours to months, I had no clue what I was. I saw myself as a monster, as the pain itself, as “different” than all the other girls I saw, knew, encountered. When I was in a depression, literally i never thought of or referred to myself as a person or as someone. To me, I was no one.

I remember writing in a journal when I was a young woman about this one moment I actually pretended to be someone. I pretended to have value. I looked into a mirror and told myself I’m someone, knowing it wasn’t true. And I wrote about how pathetic that was. And that it was a lie.

I had no dreams, no goals, no plans other than to die for months. My main interest was my own death and planning it. Everything revolved around that. It was often the only thing I was passionate about, the only thing with some sense of purpose or meaning to me. Everything was wrong with me, I was deeply flawed, irreparably broken, shattered to pieces. A million little pieces.
Pieces that could never be put back together.

When my depression would lift , or I wouldn’t be suicidal for a while, I sometimes felt like I wasn’t completely me until more days of happiness would go on. Even though I would be so happy, sometimes it felt strange, uncomfortable when it first would lift. Sometimes I almost welcomed the suicidal pain back into my heart. I was me again. Home again. I felt relief. It was agonizing, pure anguish. It was a kind of comfortable there.

Even now when I think back to my years as a girl and young woman, many of my memories are clouded with pain, though many are not, many are pure happiness. I can remember when everything was going right, many happy occasions. But still many depressed.

I have many pure happy memories. Even some memories in the midst of my depression are happy. I loved high school and had lots of friends in school and some I saw outside of school. I loved college and met a couple great friends there. I loved all my classes, the professors, and people I met through the years there, the campus, the experience.

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(me when I was fourteen years old, one of my truly happy, non-depressed days, at Wildwood NJ, on vacation with my family)

But I still often struggled so hard with suffocating loneliness and deep emotional anguish. Not always but too often.

The depression was me. I was the depression. I was nothing but pain itself. The pure agony that suffocated me everyday but still allowed me to live so I would continue to suffer.

Except, not really. I was me.

The me I am now and the me I have always been, the me I always will be.

Nothing can take that away.

I have a few profound memories that to this day are poignant life lessons.

One of those memories is of one day in college I was sitting alone in the student activity center/cafeteria planning my own death.

I had a notebook out. An educational book about U.S. Politics in my hands, not for any class but because even back then I read about politics and government and law and philosophy for pure pleasure. So I bought the textbook for thrills. And reading did bring me some sense of pleasure occasionally, even with the pain and despair of depression. I had an opened pack of Reese cups on the table that I bought at 7/11 because just like now, back then Reese cups were my favorite and I had a bottle of Coca Cola on the table half full. Although back then it was half empty. Just like now, Coca Cola was my favorite then as well and has been since I was a little girl. I have a picture somewhere of me as a three year old girl guzzling up a glass bottle full of my sweet Coca Cola.

I had my plan all devised and was about to execute it very shortly. I was going to walk out of the University building and up the street and end my life. Then I looked down at the book I was holding. The political book that wasn’t for class but for pure pleasure. An unbiased book about how the political parties in the U.S. came to be, their similarities and their differences, their evolution through the years. I looked at the Reese cups and the soda and my notebook with the pink frilly cover that I picked out for some class because it was pretty. And I was struck with the reality of my uniqueness. My very own personality. My individuality.

I had interests that not everyone has. Interests that had nothing to do with pain. I was drawn to certain colors and designs not everyone else loves. I became filled with some small sense of compassion for me. I, very briefly, saw myself as someone. An innocent girl I was about to kill, for what, I don’t know. Would I kill some other girl for whatever reason I ached to kill myself for? That answer is always, never.

I was overcome in the clarity of what I was about to do to myself. I thought it would be nothing because I was nothing.

Through the pain I saw glimpses of me. The real me. This experience was very brief and I soon went back to wanting to kill myself but I was and still am able to use the memory of this mini awakening as a reminder now and again that no matter what, no matter what pain or problems occur, I am me. The pain is not me, I am not the pain. Problems are not me and are not even extensions of myself. If I look hard enough I will catch glimpses of myself in everything I do even when pain is consuming me. All of these things I saw that day were evidence that someone exists beneath the layers and layers of pain. Someone. Someone who is more than just pain.
Someone. Me.

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(me fourteen years old, another happy day, in the Fall. I was laughing with my sister in the backseat, she was four years old and took all her clothes off!)

I have a strong ongoing sense of self. My identity is crystal clear to me. And I take pleasure in my own company whether I’m alone or surrounded by people.

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(me eleven years old, at Wildwood New Jersey, very happy, on vacation with family)

Not all people with depression have dark, gloomy personalities. It’s a mood disorder, nothing to do with personality. Not all depressed people are always negative and too serious and want to live in the dark, alone. Not all depressed people loathe everyone and the world. I’m just the opposite. I’m very easily amused, playful, curious, I laugh a lot even when I’m depressed, I listen to music and love everyone even when I’m deeply depressed. Sometimes I feel that the depression violates my personality. My cheerful, pleasant personality. Even when I’m deeply depressed, if I pay close attention, I can catch glimpses of the true me underneath, the natural personality of mine. Even now if I skim through journals I used to frequently write in when I was deeply depressed and on the brink of killing myself, every single day, I see my true self through the pain laden words.
Even back then in the midst of suicidal pain and psychosis, I expressed gratitude for things I loved, I can see my sense of amusement, the laughter, the inspiration I felt in me even back then in my seemingly endless struggle, the things that interested me, issues I was passionate about.
It wasn’t always as deep and not ingrained like it is now but it was there.

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(me, ten years old)

Never forget who you are.

Even when it feels like your whole self is being consumed, swallowed up in pain of any kind, stress, being busy, taking care of others, working, depression, anxiety, grief, other people’s definition or ideas of you, or whatever it may be, remember you are still you, a unique individual person with a combination of interests, pleasures, thoughts, desires, ideas, experiences, points of views, and ways about you that no one else on Earth, no one who has ever lived or will ever live, has. You can define yourself. Pain itself doesn’t define you but the strength and courage and Truth you know in the face of it can. What other people say or think doesn’t define you.

“Her work, I really think her work
is finding what her real work is
and doing it,
Her work, her own work,
her being human,
her being in the world.” ~ Ursula K. Le Guin

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(me – that’s pure, raw, joy showing on my face!!) 😀

“You need to claim the events of your life to make yourself yours. When you truly posses all you have been and done, which may take some time, you are fierce with reality.” ~ Florida Scott-Maxwell

My reality is that I am not a victim. Not a victim of any sort. I have and have always had choices. I have the ability to change for the better, to try new things, to love and live and learn. I am alive.

And I know the woman I am.

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I love Coca Cola and drink it way too much.
Still have that love for sweet treats.
Oldies music is still my love.
I still read educational texts for sheer joy.
I have these same big blue eyes that see beauty, compassion, and love everywhere they look.

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(me, two years old)

I have long brown hair
I have a desire to help and make things better.
I still laugh until it hurts every single day.
Root beer flavor and ginger ale soda are things I dislike.
Watching TV is not my cup of tea.
I don’t really like butterscotch flavor.
I still have a strange obsession with letters.
My dreams are still something I recall very easily.
I love stationary stuff, pens, notebooks, markers….
Love songs and country music still have my heart.
My heart is a grateful, loving one.
I love people and animals.
I still have chicken legs

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(me now, lol)

I have felt an intense craving. A hunger, a desire for Self. For myself. To look within, to explore, to Know. To know my Truth and to Nurture it, cradle it, to piece together all of the broken little pieces of me and make me whole. I have been starved. famished. Starved for Self. for self-love, self-knowledge. I paid too much attention to the pain, to problems, to everything outside of myself. I neglected the inner-me. I let me starve.

I am not without scars and flaws and cracks and breaks. But I am more beautiful for them, more Whole.

As the Hassidic saying goes, “There is nothing more whole than my broken heart.”

I encourage you to make a list of the things that make you, you. The things you like and dislike, things you love and loathe, things that make you laugh, cry, smile, inspire you, lessons you learned, profound memories your brain created through the years, your strengths and weaknesses. They can be new things about you or the same old things or a mixture of both. Look for the evidence surrounding you and within you that you are someone separate than your pain and problems. You are worthy of your own love & compassion. Nourish the self you see, feel, know underneath. Listen to those glimpses of self calling to you. Nurture them, pay attention to them.
Strengthen them. Take part of each of your days, no matter how brief, to focus on you. Do something for yourself. Walk, run, meditate, write, draw, paint, create an art journal, read something just for fun, something that inspires and speaks to you, the authentic you, listen to music, just lay in your bed and reflect….do something for you. And you only. You can live generally selflessly, helping everyone else but sometimes it’s good to do stuff for you to be in tune with yourself even more, to connect with you.

“Direct your eye right inward, and you’ll find a thousand regions in your mind yet undiscovered. Travel them and be expert in home-cosmography.” ~ Henry David Thoreau

No matter how many painful memories you have, you can create new, beautiful, joyous, happy memories, even in the midst of pain, insecurities, stress, anxiety, grief. There’s always something to be happy about and thankful for. I learned that lesson in my quest for healing and I hope you learn it too if you are struggling. Our experiences with anguish and pain and despair and broken hearts can teach us if we allow them to. Teach us greater compassion for ourselves and others. They can strengthen us, help us know ourselves deeper than ever, deepen our empathy and wisdom, help us evolve in ways we would not have without the pain.

“It’s when we’re given choice that we sit with the gods and design ourselves.” ~ Dorothy Gilman

Xoxo Kim

“They can change their minds but they can’t change me. I’ve got a dream, I’ve got a dream. Oh, I know I could share it if you want me to. If you’re going my way, I’ll go with you.” ~ Jim Croce

” The wound is the place where the Light enters you.” ~ Rumi

Until It Is Carved in Stone

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(second photo not mine)

Hello darlings, I’m here to knock your socks off this lovely morning.   It’s just after 12:00am. Yup! ;-D

Have you ever read a play called “Our Town” by Thornton Wilder?  I have and it’s amazing. It’s beyond amazing. It was produced and published in 1938. It won the Pulitzer Prize.
It takes place in the late 1800’s/early 1900’s.

I first read it when I was twenty – six years old. And whoa am I so beyond pleased that I did. Thank You to Sarah Ban Breathnach for mentioning this play in her book “Simple Abundance”!!!! Sarah Ban Breathnach is another one who has one of the biggest impacts on me with her beautiful writing.

The play is about a young woman, Emily, who dies during childbirth. She’s twenty -six years old.  It starts out when she’s a young girl and it’s all about her and her family and friends and all the people in their small village of Grover’s Corners.  It’s so small everyone knows each other.

The girl dies at age twenty – six years and she “wakes up” in the afterlife where she meets again, all those who she has known during their living years.  The girl, Emily, is freaked out, grieving, and just devastated that she lost her life and can never again have it back.   She was always a happy girl with a wonderful life while she was alive, but just like most of us tend to do, she usually took most things for granted. Never stopping to just be and allow gratitude, wonder, and awe to surge through her at all the simple joys like the white fence surrounding her house, coffee, flowers, the way people look at each other, the simple ticking of clocks and folded laundry…

Other than people dying throughout the play, the play is extremely uneventful and has received criticism for that fact but the very essence of being uneventful is the whole point of the play. It is the heart, the gut of it, if you will.

Mr. Wilder intended to show people through his wonderful play, how beautiful, wondrous, amazing, lovely… life IS even when it’s so simple, monotonous, agonizing,  and lacking in big events.
While this may seem like a play depicting an idealized view of American life, it actually is not.   The message is that life is good while being painful, it’s heartbreaking but breathtakingly beautiful.  

One character in the play, Simon Stimson, is a pivot of this message. He struggles with alcoholism and is known as the town drunk but he serves as a message to people . He is a tortured soul who constantly cries out for help but people refuse to help. They are steeped in denial and overlook his desperate pleads for help.  He eventually dies by suicide. The message here is that society, friends, family, people….we ignore, deny, repress, overlook so much of life. Even when one of our own is desperately pleading, screaming out for a helping hand.

   In the version I have, there is a beautiful forward by Donald Margulies.  

Donald Margulies states, “You are holding in your hands a great American play. Possibly the great American play.”
He goes on to say if you have read this play many years ago, perhaps in school as a requirement for some class, you will greatly benefit by reading it again.  But now, read it more mindfully, soak up the incredible message this play conveys.  Draw on your own life, your own experiences to really receive the deep wisdom of this play.

Donald Margulies admits that he is envious of any person about to begin reading this play who has never read it previously. He loves this play passionately but reading it again isn’t the same as reading it for the first occasion, he says.   But he is a teacher/professor and gets to watch others experience again and again which he loves.  

The title of this play “Our Town,” itself, is a pivotal message. The town in the play, “Grover’s Corners” is a representation of human life everywhere.   It can be extended to all of American life and beyond, all around our world.  We are all human and we all share basic human traits no matter our culture, country, society, nationality, religion, skin color, sexual orientation, political views, experiences, gender, gender identity, ethnicity, opinions…

“Our Town”, as Margulies states, is a “microcosm of the human family…”. It is all towns.  Everywhere.  This play captures the universal experience of simply being alive.

Act III of this play is breathtaking. Mr. Margulies states that he was shattered by it and that is how I feel as well.  Shattered then put back together once again but not without a few scars, a few breaks, a deep enthralling sense of enlightenment and compunction.

You know someone is a good teacher when that person can slap you with a truth so profound it brings you to a sense of ruin, leaves you with a sense of pudency, remorse for old ways, living and never knowing.   But it’s good to have someone or something break you down to the bone, pierce you to the core, punch you in the gut , knocking the wind out of you,   shatter you just to build you back up with a new sense of life, a new philosophy, a newfound strength, rebirth. 

Let it rip your heart out, shatter it to pieces, almost beyond recognition then let it glue it back together and move you forward with some scars to remind you to be mindful of the wonders of being alive.   The wonders we ignore, overlook, and slap in the face day by day.

Now I will leave you with some poignant quotes or lines out of this play.

In the play when the stage manager is interviewing one of the main characters, Mr. Webb, about their town, Mr. Webb says this:

Very ordinary town, if you ask me.  Little better behaved than most. Probably a lot duller. But our young people here seem to like it well enough. Ninety percent of ’em graduating from high school settle down right here to live-even when they’ve been away to college.”

Mr Webb: “…No ma’am, there isn’t much culture; but maybe this is the place to tell you that we’ve got a lot of pleasures of a kind here: We like the sun comin’ up over the mountain in the morning, and we all notice a good deal about the birds. We pay a lot of attention to them.    And we watch the change of the seasons; yes, everybody knows about them. But those other things – you’re right ma’am, – there ain’t much….”

When Emily died and found herself in the afterlife she insisted on looking back at her previous life.  The other dead people strongly advised against it as it would be too agonizing and despairing to see a life we once lived and can never , ever return to , but sweet, innocent Emily just had to see for herself.   They urged her to choose an “unimportant” day as opposed to one she viewed as very important.  One dead woman told her to choose the “least important” day of her life as it would be “important enough.”  And it would still be incredibly painful.

Emily chose her 12th birthday.

Here are some things she said as she looked back, as if watching a movie.

Emily: “Oh, that’s the town I knew as a little girl. And look, there’s the old white fence that used to be around our house. Oh, I’d forgotten that! Oh, I love it so!…”

Emily:(softly, more in wonder than in grief.)  “I can’t bear it. They’re so young and beautiful. Why did they ever have to get old?  Mama, I’m here. I’m grown up. I love you all, everything. – I can’t look at everything hard enough.”

Emily: “Oh, Mama, just look at me one minute as though you really saw me.  Mama, fourteen years have gone by. I’m dead. You’re a grandmother, Mama. I married George Gibbs, Mama. Wally’s dead too.  Mama, his appendix burst on a camping trip to North Conway.  We felt terrible about it – don’t you remember?  But, just for a moment now we’re all together. Mama, just for one moment we’re happy.  Let’s look at one another. “

When asked if she was happy looking back, Emily responded, “No…I should have listened to you.  That’s all human beings are!   Just blind people!”

Here is what Simon, the suicide victim says after death to Emily:
Yes, now you know.  Now you know!  That’s what it was to be alive.  To move about in a cloud of ignorance; to go up and down trampling on the feelings of those…of those about you.   To spend and waste time as though you had a million years.   To be always at the mercy of one self – centered passion, or another.  Now you know- that’s the happy existence you wanted to go back to.   Ignorance and blindness. 

Emily:
Good-bye , Good-bye world. Good-bye, Grover’s Corners….Mama and Papa. Good-bye to clocks ticking….and Mama’s sunflowers. And food and coffee. And new ironed dresses and hot baths….and sleeping and waking up. Oh, earth,you are too wonderful for anybody to realize you.  Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it–every,every minute?
Stage Manager: No. (pause) The saints and poets, maybe they do some.”

Think back to days in your life, maybe a birthday, a holiday, a special event, a graduation, a wedding….what was important to you then?  The perfect napkin patterns?   The perfect gift?  Being a perfect entertainer? Spending a certain amount of money?  Looking good?  Getting gifts?

What was really, truly important?  Napkin patterns and “perfect” gifts?  Or looking into each other’s eyes.  Really looking. Hugs.  Warm embraces.   Really tasting that hot tea or coffee. Looking up at the sky and feeling awe surge through you.  Genuine friendships. Tucking your kids into bed.   Really listening as we speak to each other.  Stopping to see the flowers, to feel the sunlight, to hear the cars on the expressway, the birds chirping, to feel the warm blankets at night.  Cuddling with your fur friends.   To smell the honeysuckle and the roses and the warm cookies baking, to feel the rain on our skin , the soil beneath us.

Think of any “ordinary” day. What about clocks ticking?  What about the refrigerator buzzing?   What about the cars parked on your street? What about the concrete beneath your feet? What about the feel of air on your skin? What about the walls in your house? The ones you look at every single day. Do you ever stop to notice them?   Or are they so mundane you don’t give them a second thought?   What about when you’re making your coffee or tea? The sugar and cream going into it?  Look at that. Really.   Just look.   When you brush your teeth, get a shower, wash your hands, inhabit your body and your life.  What if you died but were allowed, for a few minutes to look back on this life, wouldn’t you miss all this?  Miss it ALL with a passion so potent it can knock the stars and the sun into oblivion?

It’s not just the big things, the holidays, the birthdays, the weddings, babies, and graduations.  It’s not just the pretty things, the sky, flowers, sun, butterflies and birds.   It’s everything.   All of life. The cars screeching in the streets, getting out of bed. Walking, driving to work, standing in lines, paying bills, stress. Wouldn’t you miss all that?  
What if your life changes dramatically?   What if someone dies on you?   What if you are stricken with a long term illness or chronic pain disorder?   What if a close family member or friend, a pet becomes terminally ill?   What if you become paralyzed tomorrow or something else drastic happens and your life doesn’t look like this anymore?  Oh, how you would long for the mundane, your old monotonous ways, your old stress and concerns.

It’s too late for them, but not for us. We are still alive.   Still so blessed with this gift. THIS life.

And now with this awareness.

We can wake up and do all the things alive people can do. You can die at any second whether or not you realize or believe it.  

Isn’t Thornton brilliant?  Isn’t he still touching people long after his own death with this wonderful play? His beautiful, profound message?

You can die right now.

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So what are you waiting for? Stop reading this and go make eye contact.  Go smile at a stranger.   Go embrace someone.  Go look up at the sky.   Hold hands.  Sit in a warm, cozy cafe with a friend and truly listen.  Go listen to people. Listen to what they say. Listen to what they don’t say. Take advantage of your senses, of being alive, Share a banana split with your mom, sister, or best friend, hold a door for someone and really want to, buy someone coffee or tea, And if you plan on getting married, forget about the napkins if they don’t turn out right, if you plan on celebrating the holidays, forget the “perfect ” material gift.  The true gift is your presence and your love and care.
I am a blessed girl. Truly.

Now.

Xoxo Kim.

P.s. And oh, yes, go read “Our Town” please. Ty

“Normal day, let me be aware of the treasure you are. Let me learn from you, love you, bless you before you depart. Let me not pass you by in quest of some rare and perfect tomorrow. Let me hold you while I may, for it may not always be so. One day, I shall dig my nails into the earth, or bury my face in the pillow, or stretch myself taut, or raise my hands to the sky and want, more than all the world, your return.” ~ Mary Jean Irion 

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“There is no such thing in anyone’s life as an unimportant day.” ~ Alexander Woollcott

“Life is a banquet, and most poor suckers are starving to death.” – Rosalind Russell

“So the sidewalk is crowded, the city goes by
And I rush through another day
And a world full of strangers turn their eyes to me
But I just look the other way

They roll by just like water
And I guess we never learn
Go through life parched and empty
Standing knee deep in a river and dying of thirst” ~ Joe Cocker (and other singers)

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” Oh the wild joys of living! The leaping from rock to rock … the cool silver shock of the plunge in a pool’s living waters.” ~ Robert Browning

Your Beautiful Body – {awe}, {wonder}, {inspired} WOW! :-D <3

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I am often filled with wonder and awe at the things around me and within me. I believe that every single one of us should take full advantage of being alive. And not just by realizing your big dreams or doing more of what you love or being around people who make you happy. All of that too. But one way to take the experience of being alive and conscious and make the best of it is to milk it for all you can, yup, milk that shit for all (or awe?!) it’s worth! Lol 

And I’m not the only weirdo who thinks this way! Lol. Need some convincing? Here you are:

http://thedailylove.com/don’t-just-think-about-it-–-thank-about-it/

I read that when it first came out and I could not believe how it resonates with me and how someone else feels this way!  Wow!

Look around you. Look. What do you see? Hear? Feel? Smell? Taste?  The same things you always do, right? All the ordinary. Mundane occurrences. Monotonous things.   Nothing special, right? 

Wrong! 

Everything is amazing. Beyond amazing. Everything is truly incredible. Wondrous. Miraculous. There is astounding beauty all around. Within.

Look at the trees, the branches and leaves blowing in the wind, feel the air on your skin, look at the sky, take in the scents all around you, listen to the songbirds, the crickets, the cars, taste the food you put into your mouth, citrus like the sun, sweet like honeysuckle flowers drenched in morning mist, salt like tears, tears of heartbreak & joy, pain & gratitude..bask in the wonders, the rain upon your skin..watch the sun awaken or set. Or both.

You don’t have to believe in any supernatural beings, religion, or any spiritual realms to see everything, even the “ordinary”, as a “miracle.”

Just because we have instant access to something every single day doesn’t mean it’s not beautiful or wondrous or that it can’t be awe-inspiring. I love that I can see every day. That I can hear. That I can wake up.  That I can walk.  That I can look up at the sky and feel life surge through me like electricity.

I have been able to do these things all my life and if nothing goes very wrong, I always will! But it just never gets old.

Sometimes beautiful things and a feeling of wonder and awe of life may come so easily,  naturally, automatically but other occasions it may be hard to see beauty or feel inspired and we really have to look and make a conscious decision to look for it and receive it.

I don’t know most people but it seems to me that most of us do not have many awe-inspiring experiences or feel wonder and beauty with each breath or even just once a day.

I’m not talking about the overuse/”misuse” of the word “awesome ” that many people are in the habit of saying, like when people say like “that car is awesome ” or she’s so “awesome” or that baseball team, well they’re just so…
 Awesome, meaning those things are “cool” or those are what’s up. Not something that’s trendy and “neat-o” .

Awesome like something provoking a deep feeling of awe in us. Awe – respectful fear & wonder.  Like the way Lionel Richie uses this word in his song, “Say You, Say Me”.

Yup! Some things are so wondrous, so beautiful, it’s quite scary! ;-O

We see aesthetically pleasing things or hear them frequently if our senses function but how often do we let those things inspire us to the bones, to the core? How often can we feel them tingling in every cell of the body and deep into the marrow of our bones?  How often are we overwhelmed, weak at the knees just thinking about the astounding gift of being alive?  And not just things experienced through the senses but everything.   Everything felt inside. Heartwarming.  Look at your friends. Your family. Your pets. Yourself.   And feel how incredible it is to have have those things.   Those people. Not just like having fun with, & loving them but how amazing it is, the experience of knowing them, of having them.

We take so much for granted. The beauty I feel runs so deep. The love.  The inspiration is so ingrained. I have these moments usually at least once a day, usually strongest at night or the early morning. It’s like the wonder of a child, or a philosopher.  Or someone who has just stepped out of a life of utter darkness.
As if a big, thick, heavy quilt was just snatched off of me after a life of being covered by it. And now I can see.  And I will never be used to this feeling.

What is it? This feeling that overcomes me, breathes in me when everything just astounds me and I cannot believe I am blessed with such shocking, unbelievable beauty & love & inspiration & life ?

I speak of developing & strengthening positive habits frequently and this is one habit that I believe is incredible to develop and maintain. 

When we look and appreciate and meditate upon the goodness of these wonders and joys, and look & see with “new” eyes as if we have never really seen before, when we imagine a life without these wonders, it can help us so much to feel, live, and breathe life, inspiration, beauty.

When we think, “What are the chances?”

Think of your body.   How often do you think we think of our bodies? Very frequently right? But usually when we think of our own body, it’s about or in relation to its appearance, the aesthetics of it, how it looks to us and others, or when it’s hungry.

And usually it seems, at least to me, when people think of their own body, it’s in a very negative way. It doesn’t match up to those standards of beauty we have in our heads about how it should look or be.

But for once, I would like everyone to silence the hostile and toxic criticism of the appearance of their own bodies and even the mere thought of its physical appearance and instead look upon it with wonder & awe. Not for what it looks like but for what it does.

You think your fantastic car is amazing? Your intelligent phone? Those “I” things with access to the Internet? They sure are but they don’t even come close to the beauty and wonder that is your body!

Your body is one of the most amazing wonders no matter what it looks like or how perfectly or imperfectly it functions.

Your heart. Your lungs. Your kidneys. Your stomach. Your liver. Bones. Blood. Veins. Breath.  Nerves. Your eyes. Your ears. Your tongue. Your appendix. Your intestines.   Your skin. Every gorgeous curve of your body. Your spleen. Your boobies. (big or small, it doesn’t matter! Lol) Your back. Your spine that holds you.  That lovely smile. Your uplifting laugh. Your beautiful eyelashes. Your dna, your fingerprints, your blueprint.  Your finger/toe nails. Your hair. Your nose.   Your fingers & your toes.   All of those things! Isn’t it amazing?!??!

All the things it can do! It allows you to think. Experience. Feel. Live. Be.

Put your hands on your face. Make eye contact with someone, even a stranger, and connect on a basic human level. Smile. Feel those little, beautiful bones in your neck. Look at those lines of life in your wrists. Look at someone else’s body and feel the awe surge through you.

We’re so used to having a body. So used to seeing everyone else’s bodies everywhere we go. We overlook the miraculous wonder of them. The way they exist. The way they function. They way they let us live.  My body is beautiful. Your body is beautiful. Breathtaking.

Here are some mind – blowing facts just for you today!
 
The average adult heart beats 72 times a minute; 100,000 times a day; 3,600,000 times a year; and 2.5 billion times during a lifetime.

Source:
(Parramon’s Editorial Team. 2005. Essential Atlas of Physiology. Hauppauge, NY: Barron’s Educational Series, Inc.)

A kitchen faucet would need to be turned on all the way for at least 45 years to equal the amount of blood pumped by the heart in an average lifetime.

Source :
(Avraham, Regina. 2000. The Circulatory System. Philadelphia, PA: Chelsea House Publishers.)

Every day, the heart creates enough energy to drive a truck 20 miles. In a lifetime, that is equivalent to driving to the moon and back.

Source:
(Avraham, Regina. 2000. The Circulatory System. Philadelphia, PA: Chelsea House Publishers.)

During an average lifetime, the heart will pump nearly 1.5 million barrels of blood—enough to fill 200 train tank cars.

Source:
(Avraham, Regina. 2000. The Circulatory System. Philadelphia, PA: Chelsea House Publishers.)

Check this for more lovely facts!
http://facts.randomhistory.com/human-heart-facts.html

And here ‘s another one for you :

Stomach acid is strong enough to dissolve metal, even sharp objects such as razor blades. Although swallowing metal is never a good idea, it will seriously injure or kill a person before it’s dissolved by the person ‘s stomach acid. 
(Li. P. K.; Spittler C.; Taylor C. W.; Sponseller D.; Chung R.S.; Department of Surgery, Meridia Huron and Hillcrest Hospitals, Cleveland , Ohio
Gastrointestinal Endoscopy ISSN 0016-5107)

But isn’t that amazing?! ;-D

And think of when you have a cut or a broken bone. Whether or not you need medical assistance, that body of yours heals itself. Your skin closes back up. It’s almost too good to be true. But it’s not because It IS true!

Imagine walking up a street and out of nowhere being overwhelmed by the incredible beauty of living, imagine the feeling as if you will burst into tears at any moment.   Not tears of sorrow or pain. But tears of joy and gratitude.  

I want you to love your body for letting you live. And live so well. Nourish it. Cherish it.  Your body hears everything you say & think so watch what you say, you don’t want to stress it out! Or piss it off.

Here is something to ponder written by Albert Einstein :

“There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.

But without deeper reflection one knows from daily life that one exists for other people; first of all for those upon whose smiles and well-being our own happiness is wholly dependent, and then for the many, unknown to us, to whose destinies we are bound by the ties of sympathy.

A hundred times every day I remind myself that my inner and outer life are based on the labors of other men, living and dead, and that I must exert myself in order to give in the same measure as I have received and am still receiving.

A human being is part of a whole, called by us the “Universe,” a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings, as something separated from the rest -a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest us.

Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circles of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.

Only a life lived for others is worth living.”

–Albert Einstein

(I don’t necessarily agree with it in its entirety. I like this.  Very compassionate & intelligent, generous man!  But that last line, it kind of rubs me the wrong way. And not merely because he says we should live for others but the gall to assume only certain kinds of lives or worth living. I don’t think he’s saying we should live to be servants at the expense of our own sanity and welfare but some people may take it that way. I completely agree we should help others and not demand or expect tangible things or favors in return and should have compassion and empathy and that we are all connected in ways. We can help others and love all living creatures without wearing ourselves out to be their servants. We must find the correct balance and set healthy boundaries. But yeah I wouldn’t say any life is ‘not worth living’. But I guess that calls for a whole other post!)

Ohhhh, the wild joys of living…..

“Oh the wild joys of living! The leaping from rock to rock … the cool silver shock of the plunge in a pool’s living waters.” ~ Robert Browning

I hope you find that inspiration, that music in your bones, that magic in your heart, that awareness, & gratitude, those awe-provoking moments that will blow you away.   And always remember, even the ordinary is truly extraordinary when we really. 

😀

Xo Kim

P.s.

https://livingmindfully.org/

http://www.meditationoasis.com/