A couple of weeks back, I had a few minutes to myself before my next coaching session. It had been a busy day, and I wasn't feeling as grounded and spacious as I would have liked. On an impulse, I stepped outside my coaching space, took off my shoes and stood barefoot on the grass.
There was a light breeze in the air, warm spring sunshine caressing my face, and a delicious treat before my eyes: the branches of the larch and pine trees danced gently in the wind, light and shadow played a moving pattern on the grass, and the sparkles on the lake's surface beckoned to me like an old friend.
In an instant, I felt grounded on the earth, connected to Spirit and open-hearted. I felt a rush of gratitude, of love and of recognition. In that moment, I was one with the elements and remembered – in my body and soul, not just my mind - that I, too, was made of fire, water, earth and air. That I was the grass, the trees, the breeze, the sunshine and the lake water. That I was one with and not separate. I came home, to myself and to my place in this beautiful web of creation. And it was powerful.
A little later, back inside and in front of my laptop screen ready for the Skype coaching session to start, I felt ready and available. My short visit with nature had brought me to the inner place that I know brings the most value to my coaching sessions : I was open-hearted, grounded, connected, in my body and joyfully curious about what was to come. What a gift!
My gratitude felt sweet and strong since this soulful home of ours welcomed our son when he was born, held us as we learned to become parents and meet life's challenges, and supported us as we made bold decisions to create the glorious life we envision for ourselves.
In a couple of days' time we will be leaving this home, and moving to a new house, a new town and in many ways a new life. Our son will be starting school in September, we'll be joining a new community of creative individuals, and we will soon be birthing a new business project.
But moving house isn't a restful or easy process (at least for me!) and my home is currently filled with boxes, packed and empty, as well as a good amount of unswept dirt on the floor (why sweep when it's going to get dirty again in 10 minutes?!). It's unsettling, as it no longer feels totally like home, and we also haven't yet arrived in the new house to make it our new cosy nest.
Morning is the best time for me to meditate, and I usually manage to take time for this on my own, while my husband keeps an eye on our son Milo (nearly four). When that's not possible, like this week when my husband is away, I can usually manage about ten minutes of sitting quietly, looking out at the trees behind our house while Milo plays quietly round me. Over time - surprisingly easily, actually - he has learned that he needs to play quietly and not disturb me when this is happening.
For sure it's not the same as having truly peaceful time on my own in a quiet corner of the house or out in the woods, but it does have its advantages: Milo doing a special 'count-down' for me to mark the beginning of my 'quiet moment', Milo quietly putting out pretend fires and generally solving emergency situations in the background with his fireman's helmet on (helping me to learn the art of being connected and present no matter what is going on around me ), and Milo coming for our much-loved post-quiet-moment-cuddle when I'm done. Oh so sweet! And this morning, it was even sweeter, and funnier...
There is a prayer that speaks to me a lot these days, an adaptation of St Theresa of Avila's prayer and I've taken to saying each line out loud and really trying to feel its impact. So this morning, after his patience for having an unanswering, meditating mama had reached its limit, I asked Milo if he wanted to read the prayer along with me, and it went like this: