Receive is the word I chose for my January calendar photo. It was inspired by something I learned from 2022 that I want to carry with me into 2023.
In 2022 I became aware of how easy it is to not fully receive. What do I mean by that?
- Have you ever taken something someone did for you for granted?
- Felt entitled rather than grateful?
- Said thank you yet been too busy thinking about something else to fully receive what was happening in the moment?
- Said something like, "You shouldn't have."
- Or been just plain oblivious?
If you’re human, it’s happened.
Following Doug’s passing, when I find myself missing him, I think about what I am missing. It’s always something I am grateful for. And then I tell him. In this way my missing him turns into a celebration of him.
- Like when there was pollen on the deck last spring and the dogs were tracking it into the house. As I was sweeping I thought of how he’d blow the pollen off the deck with the leaf blower. I thanked him for all those times.
- Or when I was ready for a second cup of coffee but also enjoying having the dogs all cozied up in my lap. I thought of all those times I’d asked him, in my more pathetic voice, “Doug, could you please get me more coffee?” And how he’d always lovingly oblige. Of course I'd say, "Thank you," but I was taking 'receiving his love' to a new level on that morning when I got up to get it for myself and realized this thank you wasn't about the coffee. It was for loving me.
- And his laugh. How I miss that laugh. Several years back we were playing around with Photo Booth on my laptop and accidentally recorded ourselves. I came across that recording of us talking and laughing recently. What a treasure. Thank you for your laugh, Doug. What a delight.
From this practice I came to realize how often I hadn’t fully received his love. Through the practice of grieving I’d found myself receiving. I once heard it said that the love we don’t receive will be held for us until we are ready. I get that now, but I also want to get better at being in the moment when love is coming my way—to be more interactive with it, present with it, delighted by it. These things he did were avenues his love flowed through. I also believe he's got new avenues that we get to learn about now.
And just to be clear, I’m not suggesting to do this instead of feeling the full range of emotions losing someone triggers. I let myself feel sad over the loss of his physical presence when the feelings bubble up. I just don’t camp in feeling bad for myself. Losing someone who has been a huge part of your life for over 40 years, in itself, is a huge adjustment. We all deserve a "poor baby" from time to time. So many feelings bubbled up, including feeling sad over not fully receiving when he was here to physically give. But you know, sometimes it takes the experience to gain the wisdom. For that I can be grateful too.
So in honor of Doug I plan to continue with taking receiving to new levels in 2023. And remember, receiving allows the giver to experience the full joy that comes with the act of giving. Thank you to those who reached out to me this New Year's Eve: Donna, Heather, Bree and Kelsey. I'm so grateful you acted on your thought to text. It meant a bunch. Muah!
And thanks for the rainbow this morning! Doug was that you? The answer I got was, "Only the ego would need recognition." Touché!
What a way to start off a new year.
What did you learn in 2022 that you plan to carry with you or take to greater depths and heights in 2023?
Happy New Year!
Friends in this Love,
Dear Trish Whynot;
Strange though it may be, I learned the same lessons during 2022. Several years ago, 2018, I lost my dearest friend. We met while in college and remained close for 60 years. The fun, dinners, camping trips, laughing, walking through museums, movies, my kids in tow. You so eloquently wrote down every feeling, thought, and picture that came through this past year. Yes, I too, am so glad I received those wonderful times and memories. Even the awkward moment when we were touring the hospice he had picked out. How we laughed when we got back in the car. We were like an old married couple by then. He never married, and I married someone else. My husband had passed many years ago. But the hostess finally asked were we husband and wife, and we smiled at each other, and said no just friends for 60 years. But we got in the car and looked at each other and started laughing. Yes, receiving. Thank you again for your eloquence, thought, caring, and knowledge, because you helped me receive again today. Thank you and have a glorious year.
You are most welcome. Thank you for writing! I'm glad my experience helped you to put words to yours and to receive again. I like how Donna Ashworth says it, "When I go don't learn to live without me just learn to live with my love in a different way."
Wishing you a glorious, love-filled year ahead.
Sending my healing thoughts and prayers to you for the passing of your beloved Doug and for your healing and receiving in 2023.
I truly enjoy all your blogs and tend to learn something about myself after reflecting on my own experiences.
The past year was especially challenging for me and had to learn to lean on others for a much needed "under push". That magical push on the swing when you were younger from a friend or family member that lifts you above the trees, up toward the sky when you can't is really a wonderful thing to behold. Since i historically have a hard time asking for help, allowing myself to receive provided much needed love and emotional support to lift me up.
Here is an"under push" for you. As a healer, I know that our passed loved ones are not physically with us but not as far away as one may think. Be mindful of seeing signs and symbols of Doug in your daily life. Come spring and pollen season, dont be surprised if you see gusts of wind blowing the pollen off your deck or smelling coffee when none is brewing. Spirit works in amazing ways just to let you know, they are there in that moment and they love you very much.
Have an amazing year of self discovery and healing.
"Under push!" What a great visual! Hope it helped you see the forest through the trees.
Doug is definitely doing a good job of making his presence known. He likes to leave me hearts like in the photo above with the heart shaped leaves at sunrise.
I will be on the lookout for ways he continues to take care of me. Thank you for that reminder and for the warm wishes for 2023.
Hope you are out of the woods now and how fun to take with you that it's okay to ask for help. It's a sign of strength actually.
Hope you have a de"light"ful 2023!