Embracing Your “Open” Nest

Embracing Your “Open” Nest

“Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, it became a butterfly.” (English Proverb)

Getting ready for her to leave: Is she my best friend? Do I make day to day plans solely dependent upon her? Does my day revolve around her schedule? Does she tell me everything going on in her life? Do we spend most of our time as parents talking about her?

I cannot depend on her to continue to breathe life into mine.

Moving from pitcher to catcher, with her at bat.

To transition as a parent, at the same time that she transitions to adulthood.

To allow myself to go through the stages of grief.

“There is a fallow time for the Spirit when the soil is barren because of sheer exhaustion.” (Howard Thurman)

From here on in, there are things that I will not be able to control about her life and future.

How?

  • Take a lot of long walks.
  • There cannot be change without loss. Imagine me without her living here.
  • Reconnect with who I am in addition to being a parent.
  • Step out of my comfort zone more often.
  • Progress, not perfection.
  • Give myself permission to let the spotlight shine on me.
  • Move forward into my New Normal. Closer toward my True Self. Step by slow step.
  • Return to my playful spirit.
  • Build a bridge to the other side.
  • Say Yes to new things.
  • Allow a year of preparation and change. A Sabbatical. A new kind of pregnancy.
  • Seek out mentors and role models.
  • Await the next assignment to find me.

“You cannot discover new oceans unless you have the courage to lose sight of the shore.” (Author unknown)

“The one who is swimming against the stream knows the strength of it.” (President Woodrow Wilson)

“I want you to get out there and walk—better yet, run! —on the road God called you to travel. I don’t want any of you sitting around on your hands. I don’t want anyone strolling off, down some path that goes nowhere. And mark that you do this with humility and discipline—not in fits and starts, but steadily, pouring yourselves out for each other in acts of love, alert at noticing differences and quick at mending fences.” (St. Paul. Ephesians 4:2-3 The Message Translation of the Bible)

Welcome the invitation to this new chapter of my life.

(Source: From Mom to Me Again. By Melissa Schultz.)

Picture your Future

Picture your Future

“In a quiet place with eyes closed, picture yourself getting on a magic carpet that takes you into the blue sky riding the currents like a bird, as far away or as close by as they take you. While on the magic carpet, know that you have all the knowledge, wisdom, skills and experience you need to be and do whatever you want. Nothing can stop you. No obstacles stand in your way. You have everything you need. You have permission and the freedom to be and do whatever you want. Continue to breathe and feel it inside you.

With that inner knowing, picture the magic carpet landing somewhere, a place where you can be truly yourself and do what you want. You get off the carpet and look around.

What do you see? Are you outside or inside? Pause to picture it.

What do you hear? Pause to hear it.

What do you smell? Pause to smell it.

What do you taste? Pause to taste it.

Are you alone or with someone? Pause. If with someone, is it one person, a group of people, or the public? Pause to be alone or with others.

What kind of clothes are you wearing to be who you are? Pause to be in those clothes.

What are you doing? Pause. What part of your body do you see yourself using? Is it your brain, your eyes, your ears, nose, voice, hands, legs, feet, your heart, your soul? Pause to do it.

How do you feel? Pause to feel it.

Now the magic carpet returns you to the present and the chair you are seated in. Gently open your eyes, move your toes and fingers, shake your hands and roll your feet, give your arms and legs a shake.

While the picture is still fresh in your mind, draw a picture or write a paragraph describing it in as much detail as you can.”

(Source: Retire to the Life you Love: Practical Tools for Designing Your Meaningful Future by Nell Smith.)

Meditation to meet with your Inner Elder

Connect with your inner source of wisdom and receive guidance, so that you may live a life that follows truth.  The Inner Elder is already enlightened and has intimate knowledge of your True Self.

The process:

Slowly count from one to ten. Imagine yourself walking up a set of stairs that lead to a door.

Knock on the door which opens for you. You are greeted with a warm embrace by your spiritual self, your Inner Elder, the embodiment of boundless compassion and wisdom.  What does the doorway look like? The room? Your Inner Elder? Feel love and reassurance.

Ask your Inner Elder for guidance about an issue that is of concern to you.  Allow a response to come.

Rest in the silence for a while. Feel encouragement and know that you can come again at any time. Ask for and receive a blessing from your Inner Elder.

Leave through the door, and with joy and confidence walk down the stairs and slowly return, counting backward from ten to one.

Sit quietly. Record your experience in your journal.

Amen.

(Source: From Age-ing to Sage-ing: A Profound New Vision of Growing Older by Zalman Schachter-Shalomi and Ronald S. Miller. Learn more through Sage-ing International.)

 

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