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Sunday, July 3, 2016

Richmond, VA/Death unexpected

Merry meet Friends!
Michelle here, bringing lots of love and light!

"You should always tell friends and family you love them because the future is unexpected and everyone should know they are loved." ~ Kushandwizdom

"It's the things that you least expect that hit you the hardest." ~

"Death of a loved one at an unexpected time makes you see everything in life so differently.  Suddenly most things are just not a big deal." ~

"The trouble is you think you have time." ~ Buddha

On yesterday a friend, Iris, and I attended a BBQ.  On the way I asked if she had told another friend about it.  She stated that she had spoken to her but forgot to mention it.  I had been home from the BBQ about 30 minutes when I received a call from Iris telling me that the friend I asked about earlier had died suddenly of a heart attack that evening.  I was in shock to say the least!  We don't know the day or the hour...

I last saw her at Iris' husband's funeral and later that night at Iris' house.  We laughed and joked about an incident we had both experienced at the funeral.  We left Iris' house together and said our goodbyes.  I didn't know her extremely well but I knew her.  We had been to several events together and I always saw her at Iris' house.  I am so glad that we had a pleasant relationship.  It's so easy to let little things stand in the way of friendships.

Misunderstandings, hurt feelings, and egos all can and do stop people from communicating with one another.  Most of the time it is something so silly and minute causing the friction.  If people would just talk to each other about what's bothering them, most conflicts could be resolved.  Perhaps we should live as if each day might be our last and show kindness to one another.  At the very least we don't have to keep chips on our shoulders regarding imagined or real issues.  Some things aren't as huge as we make them.

All deaths can be traumatic but an unexpected death from someone who hasn't been ill is very unsettling.  There are things we wished we had said or done.  As Buddha said in the above quote, we think we have time.  Don't delay...if you need to make amends with someone, please do it now.  If someone arrives in your consciousness, give them a call, text or email; preferably a call in order to hear a voice.  No matter how long we live, life is short.

I love you all!  You are appreciated!

Until next Sunday,
Merry part and merry meet again,
Blessed be!,
Gypsi Mama Michelle

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Richmond, VA/Fulfillment

Merry meet Friends!
Michelle here, bringing lots of love and light!

"Keep your dreams alive.  Understand to achieve anything requires faith and belief in yourself, vision, hard work, determination, and dedication.  Remember all things are possible for those who believe." ~ Gail  Devers

"When a dream is fulfilled, it is always a glorious feeling." ~ Lailah Gifty Akita

"The only thing that will stop you from fulfilling your dreams is you." ~ Tom Bradley

"To fulfill a dream, to be allowed to sweat over lonely labor, to be given a chance to create, is the meat and potatoes of life.  The money is the gravy." ~ Bette Davis

"When we are motivated by goals that have deep meaning, by dreams that need completion, by pure love that needs expressing, then we truly live life." ~ Greg Anderson

"Not fulfilling your dreams will be a loss to the world, because the world needs everyone's gift - yours and mine." ~ Barbara Sher

Yesterday I had a soft launch of my first workshop entitled, Step Into Your Dreams.  Launching the workshop was my way of "stepping into my dreams".  I was excited and nervous at the same time, which is a good thing.  I have spoken in public many times so that was not the cause for the nervousness.  I was nervous because some part of me, that very small part which still wants to hold on, felt that my worth was tied to the number of attendants.  I know that this is not true yet the feeling did try to overtake me before the workshop.  Eventually I settled down (or maybe up in consciousness) to a calm state.  As India Arie sang that "her worth was not determined by the price of her clothes", I sang "my worth is not determined by the number of attendants."

The workshop was great!  After the welcome and invocation, I shared my heart and how I overcame fear regarding certain incidents in my life. The participants broke into small groups to answer prepared questions and then reconvened for discussion.  I played Unwritten by Natasha Bedingfield.  We formed an Affirmation Circle stating who we were, whether manifested or not. A short video was played pertaining to the subject.  I then closed with an Invocation.  The workshop started and ended on time.  I did not collect money from anyone.  This was my gift to those attending for showing up.

Our dreams will die within us if we don't fulfill them.  The non fulfillment could cause depression and other illnesses and we wouldn't know why.  I have a friend whose daughter is a phenomenal artist.  She has started a nonprofit organization called Justre'.  She had an art auction yesterday to fund her three week trip to Africa to teach art to underprivileged children.  She recently received her masters from Georgetown University in Art Therapy. This young woman, Sone-Seree Burrell, is fulfilling her dreams.  I have known her since she was a child and I am so very proud of her.  For the past four days and on tomorrow, my daughter Zakiya and her friend Farelle Walker, are fulfilling their dreams by filming a production that is Farelle's, based on conversations with Kiya. This is the season for fulfillment.  Don't let your dreams die!

In a semi dream state a few weeks ago, I was given an idea by Spirit.  I will create that this week.  I have been working on my daughter's wedding bouquet and that was top priority.  I will post pictures after the wedding as I plan to sell custom made bouquets. Whatever has been in us, is now wanting to come out and come out with a shout.  I am more than ready  Are you?

Until Next Sunday,
Merry part and merry meet again, 
Blessed be,
Gypsi Mama Michelle

Monday, June 20, 2016

Richmond, VA/Family

Merry meet Friends!
Michelle here, bringing lots of love and light!

"Families are like branches on a tree.  we grow in different directions yet our roots remain as one." ~ unknown

"No family is perfect...we argue, we fight. We even stop talking to each other at times, but in the end, family is family...the love will always be there."

"The love of a family is life's greatest blessing."

"Family is like music, some high notes, some low notes, but always a beautiful song." ~

Earlier this week for the first time in a long while my manifested funds were very low.  All of my bills were paid but it didn't leave anything for food.  I was asking my sister about using some item in my refrigerator as I explained my situation.  Immediately my sister named what she was having for dinner and invited me to share. She called me two days later and invited me to dinner again which she would cook after work.  My sister and I started speaking again a few months ago after a lengthy period of not speaking.  I love my sister and I know she loves me but families can, do and will sometime have upsets.  Sometimes the coming back together makes the bond stronger.  My sister has a very generous heart and I believe if I needed her during that time of non communication, she would have been there as I would have been for her.

I started thinking about family when I attended my friend Cher's mom, 90th birthday celebration on Saturday.  I have known Cher since we were five and with the way things were back then, I knew her family also.  Ms. Rosalee is an exceptional woman and she and her husband, before his transition, raised strong, intelligent children who are successful.  Family and friends who chose to do so, spoke about Ms. Rosalee; friends told how they met her and how long they've known her.  As her children spoke about the type of mother she is, even though I know the accolades are true for her, I thought to myself, well all children would probably say that about their mothers at a function, even if not true.  I thought about that on my drive home.  It kept nagging at me.

As I continued to think about everything said about Ms. Rosalee and the thought I had about people speaking kindly of their mothers, I knew that not everyone would or could say those things. 
Families are not always close and children are not always close to their parents.  My father has transitioned but I wasn't close to him due to the divorce and his living out of the country.  I'm not particularly close to my mother.  My mother would always tell us that we could do and be whatever we chose in life.  However, she did not foster those words.  This is an observation not a condemnation.  We do the best we can with the knowledge we have and when we know to do better we do.  It was my mother's nonchalant attitude that caused me to be active with my children.

I was sharing my feelings with my oldest daughter, Zakiya.  I said it caused me to wonder what would be said about me at a 90th birthday.  She said that I should never wonder; that I did and am still doing an awesome job.  That brought tears to my eyes.  I'm glad that I have that type of relationship with my children.  I can see the genuine love that Cher and her siblings have for their mother and each other.  They are a close knit family extending to grandchildren and great grands.  My friend, Celest has that relationship with her children and grandchildren and so does my sister.  I don't have that with my grandchildren.  My grandchildren don't live in Virginia but that shouldn't stop relationship.  

I was honored to have been included in that celebration.  Ms. Rosalee was so happy to see me and gave me the biggest hug.  I used to go by there once a month and we would sit and chat.  I enjoyed our visits and I think I would like to resume them.  I am a believer that we choose our family of birth in order for us to experience what it is we need for our current life cycle. So maybe some of us don't have the families that others have or that we may desire but we do have what we need.  I know some are thinking they would not have chosen their families. However, if we could see everything as GOD experiencing life and knowing itself through us, as us, and that we are experiencing and knowing ourselves as GOD in us, as us, then maybe we will learn to appreciate, love, understand and bless our families as they are.  We are, after all, ONE!

Until next Sunday,
Merry part and merry meet again,
Blessed be,
Gypsi Mama Michelle

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Richmond, VA/Timing

Merry meet Friends!
Michelle here, bringing lots of love and light!

"Timing is everything.  When you're really ready for it, it will come." ~ The Good Vibe

"Life has an odd way of  making things work out in the end." ~ Article from Lifehack

"Keep the faith.  The most amazing things in life tend to happen right at the moment you're about to give up hope." ~ Lifehack

"What's meant to be will always find a way." ~

"Keep going.  Everything you need will come to you at the perfect time." ~ Lifehack

"Trust the timing of your life." ~ Article from: Her Happy Balance

"Patience is power.  Patience is not an absence of action; rather it is 'timing'.  It waits on the right time to act, for the right principles and in the right way." ~ Fulton J. Sheen

Lately I've been reading about synchronicity and coincidence. Years ago, I read The Celestine Prophecy and picked it up again recently.  It deals with energy, synchronicity and coincidence.  It tells how most people ignore them and the meanings they have.  I've also been reading Deepak Chopra's, The Spontaneous Fulfillment of Desire, recommended by my daughter Zakiya.  This is another book about coincidence.  Needless to say, I don't think it's a "coincidence" that these books have entered my life.

Synchronicity is defined as the simultaneous occurrence of events that appear significantly related but have no discernible causal connection.  Coincidence is defined as a remarkable concurrence of events or circumstances without apparent causal connection. Synchronicity appears to be a series of events happening at the same time whereas a coincidence could be one or several events not happening simultaneously.  Either way I believe they are worthy of attention.

How many times have we thought about someone and the phone rings or we see them on the street?  That's considered a coincidence.  If, on the other hand, the thought about the person leads you to call them and they mention someone they know needs a house sitter in Bali and you have been wanting to go to Bali but didn't know where to stay, that's synchronicity!  These events occur all the time but we rarely pay attention because they are thought to be random.  It is all about timing.  It is also about what one has put out in prayer and meditation.  Things seem to just happen at the right moment.  

Here are some examples from my life.  When I left my husband I lived with a friend's mom.  I saw a woman on the bus with a hairstyle that I liked.  I inquired about the stylist.  I made an appointment.  As women often do with hairstylists, we talked and I mentioned that I wanted to live downtown.  When I saw her next, she told me about an apartment on her street.  I walked there, took the phone number, called and got the apartment.  I had been meditating about what I wanted in an apartment and the rent I wanted to pay.  It had what I desired.  These incidents, which seemed random, all started with my car being stolen and my having to take the bus.  I would probably have never seen the woman with the hairstyle otherwise.  There have been many such occurrences in my life.

I started paying attention to these type of incidents after reading the first book I mentioned.  I am aware of the role synchronicity and coincidence plays in our lives.  I am paying close attention to what life is bringing me as I await this next adventure.  Even though I moved into this apartment in September, 2015 and I like it, I desire to move somewhere less expensive.  I realized with the reading and rereading of these books and my own experiences that I had not placed my awareness on what I desire.  The first thing to do before prayer and meditation is to be clear on what it is we desire.  I thought that I wanted another apartment but I don't, not in the traditional sense.  I would like to rent an apartment over a garage or in the basement of some one's home.  

I believe the timing is right for me to seriously allow my creativity to flow and do what I hear Spirit saying to me.  A few days ago, I was in a semi dream state and I heard three words.  I knew it was Spirit because I had never thought anything like that.  I heard it and I am doing what Spirit has spoken to me.  A few days before hearing the words I was inspired to create by my friend, Rev. Sonya Brown's sister, Dr. Myrah Brown Green.  Sonya wanted us to become FB friends and we are.  Coincidence? Probably more synchronicity because of the chain of events.  I thank God/Goddess/All There Is for these occurrences.  When the time is right, we will be led to do what we need to do.  Let's pay attention knowing it will change our lives.  In the words of Abraham Hicks, let's recite this mantra every day: Everything Always Works Out For Me and the "me" is all of us.

Until next Sunday,
Merry part and merry meet again!
Blessed be,
Gypsi Mama Michelle

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Richmond, VA/Restlesness

Merry meet Friends!
Michelle here, bringing lots of love and light!

"Wild things have restless wings that often need to fly." ~ Michael Xavier

"It all takes time and lessons and places, but I'm learning to listen to my restless heart, telling me to 'go, go,go'!" ~ Charlotte Eriksson, Another Vagabond Lost to Love:Berlin Stories on Leaving and Arriving

"I suppose what I really am is restless.  I want to go everywhere, see everything, do everything.  I want to find something. Yes, that's it, I want to find something." ~ Agatha Christie, Endless Night

"For my soul lies dormant, restless, waiting for that moment when shackles are cast aside and it is free to fly once more." ~ Virginia Alison

"My restless roaming spirit would not allow me to remain at home very long." ~ Buffalo Bill

"I am restless.  I don't mind leaving this comfortable, static life.  I could live a year on my own in a remote village." ~ Michael Palin

Restless AGAIN!  It never leaves though, it just sits quietly in disguise waiting for me to acknowledge it.  I always felt that something had to be wrong with me because I never seemed satisfied in one place for very long.  I can identify with Buffalo Bill in the above quote.  All of the quotes express how I feel.  I always feel that there is more; more to see, more to do, more to find.  I can practice acceptance of current situations but acceptance does not mean satisfaction.

There is a longing in me and I'm not always sure for what I am longing.  It is so intense sometimes that I feel very sad.  Charlotte Eriksson expresses it best in the above quote; "I am learning to listen to my restless heart telling me to go, go, go!"  I know that I take myself with me wherever I go but it's not me I'm trying to avoid.  Actually, I'm not trying to avoid anything, anyone or any place.  I just want new adventures.  Is that wrong?  Is it a lack of maturity to want to be free?

Some years ago in the nineties, I attended a prophetic conference. The prophet spoke to me and compared me to an eagle.  He said eagles have the ability to see miles ahead; they fly high above the storm and know it's coming.  The prophet was prophesying that I am a prophet.  I researched eagles because I wanted to know more about them.  What I didn't identify with was the wild nature of the eagle.  I don't understand why I didn't since there is a wildness in me.  I think it was because I was in a charismatic church at the time and while it was accepted to be wild in the spirit, it wasn't so much in general.  I'm speaking of wild like horses, free to run and be.

When I read the quote about "wild things having restless wings", I thought about the eagle again.  Eagles need to fly and so do I.  The shackles that bind me now are a job and an apartment.  The time for the job to end keeps getting pushed back.  Lease is up in September and I really think I am going to spread my wings and fly wherever Spirit leads.  There are many ways to travel on a budget and I intend to take advantage of them.  I've said all of this before. Sometimes we have to keep telling ourselves a thing until it becomes more than words.  

My daughter's wedding will be over at the end of July and I won't be needed in the same way.  The wonderful thing about children becoming adults is that parenting is entirely different.  I am grateful for that.  I enjoyed their childhood but I have never wished for them to be children again.  Life goes on.  They must live their lives and I will live mine albeit possibly not anywhere close.  We shall see.  

Distant lands, different cultures, exotic foods all beckon and I wish to experience each one.  Apparently Spirit/Creator had a purpose in mind when I made my physical appearance.  Spirit knew I would be this way, and Spirit wants to know itself as me, which is an expression of itself.  I no longer think there is anything wrong with me being who I am and the way that I am.  As India Ari says, "I know my Creator didn't make no mistakes on me.  My hips, my eyes, my lips, my thighs, I'm loving what I see."  That goes for my mind and restless spirit too!  Thank you GOD/GODDESS/ALL THAT IS for making me, me!  And I give thanks and gratitude for all of the individuals that Creator is expressing as.  Let Spirit express through you, as you, for what else can it do!?  

Until next Sunday,
Merry part and merry meet again,
Blessed be!
Gypsi Mama Michelle

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Richmond, VA/Intuition

Merry meet friends!
Michelle here, bringing lots of love and light!

"I believe in intuitions and inspirations...I sometimes FEEL that I am right.  I do not KNOW that I am."  ~ Albert Einstein

"Don't try to comprehend with your mind.  Your minds are very limited.  Use your intuition." ~ Madeleine L'Engle, A Wind in the Door (A Wrinkle in Time Quintet, #2)

"Intuition is seeing with the soul." ~ Dean Koontz

"Intuition is a sense of knowing how to act spontaneously, without needing to know why." ~ Sylvia Clare, Trusting Your Intuition: Rediscover Your True Self to Achieve a richer, More Rewarding Life

Last Sunday I was to travel to Black Mountain, NC to attend the SEWW Herbal Immersion.  I last attended in May of 2014 after I left Earthaven.  I met some amazing women and was looking forward to reconnecting with some of them and some from the conference in October, 2014.  The experience, for me, was life altering and I wanted to be in that vibrational energy once again.  I knew the car I am using wouldn't make the 5-6 hour drive.  I thought about renting a car but I needed to think of the expense, especially with the job situation.

My oldest son had a situation on May 24th, I didn't want to participate and decided not to do so.  I prayed and meditated about attending the Immersion..  I knew if being at the Immersion was the plan, then somehow a way would be made.  As much as I wanted to attend there was, however, a hesitance in my spirit. When Sunday came there was no solution forthcoming for me to attend the Immersion. I still was not planning to participate in my son's situation.  On the morning of the 24th, I awakened knowing that my presence would have an effect in his situation.  I went and it did.  

Sometimes we don't know the why of a thing, we just know we must follow the leads given.  We can call it a hunch, discernment, a still small voice or intuition.  What we call it doesn't matter.  It's what we do when we feel, sense or hear the "thing".  Many times I have said, "Something told me to do or say that."  I don't always immediately pay attention but I am paying attention more than I used to.  Intuition will never lead one astray.  It's easier for me to follow when I feel something as opposed to hearing something.  I will, on occasion, think what I am hearing is me.  In reality, it is GOD/GODDESS/ALL THERE IS as me. 

Prayer and meditation is one way of getting the answers that are needed.  Being still and listening helps us to understand ourselves better.  Intuition, though, does not always wait for the stillness.  It comes in moments we least expect it.  Being attuned to Spirit will help us to recognize it when it appears and to pay attention.  I'm glad that I paid attention to the sense and feeling I had pertaining to my son's situation.  The Immersion is held every year and I will attend again.  If the women I met before aren't there when I next attend, I will meet others.  I didn't know those women before meeting them.

Intuition is what I need to trust when it comes to my job situation. I definitely need more income than SS if I am to keep this apartment. My lease is up at the end of September and the job is expected to last that long.  Everyone has been applying for the jobs that are similar to ours as soon as they post.  I have not felt led to apply as yet.  Intuitively I feel as if I am not to apply.  I have no idea why other than maybe Spirit trying to get me to work for myself.
Whatever the reason, if indeed it is my intuition, I want to follow it. I am interested to see where this path might take me.  I would love to live in a tiny house and travel wherever and whenever I choose, working from my laptop.  We shall see!

I've met someone who lives on his boat and is a fellow gypsy.  I love his lifestyle.  I applaud anyone who decides to take his/her life in hand and follow their heart.  I feel the call of the wind beckoning me to follow.  "Go with the flow", it's saying, "Let me blow you where I will."  "OK", I answer, "soon very soon!"

Until next Sunday,
Merry part and merry meet again,
Gypsi Mama Michelle

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Richmond, VA/ Fear and Transition

Merry meet Friends!
Michelle here, bringing lots of love and light!

"The key to success is to focus our conscious mind on things we desire not things we fear." ~ Brian Tracy

"Everything you want is on the other side of fear." ~ Unknown

"You don't have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step." ~  Intent Blog

Last night, May 21st, in addition to being my youngest son's birthday, was the full moon.  The moon is in Sagittarius, my sun sign and the sun is in Gemini, my moon sign.  To top that off, Mercury goes direct today!  Whew!  As a Sagittarius with a Gemini moon, I am always restless anyway; with the moon and the sun's placement, it seems a double whammy.  It does have its advantages though.  I'm thinking but I also want action.

I am facilitating a workshop on June 18th.  It seems as if once I actually set it up, even though it hasn't happened yet, I now have the courage to look into other things that I desire to do.  I have always had ideas floating around but now I intend to implement them.  Fear is not my friend!  While I want to give the information in the workshop, I'm doing it more for me.  This is a step that I must take in order to overcome my fears.  We teach what we need to learn.

Somehow I intuitively know that this time I will actually act on my dreams.  One of my problems has been that I would visualize the entire event in my head, which would then lead me to all sorts of things that could go wrong.  I would end up not doing anything. W. Clement Stone said, "Thinking will not overcome fear, but action will."  I realize that we must think and I am a thinker, but over thinking has been a detriment to me.  All I need do is take the first step.  Taking that step will allow me to see all else.  

When we decide to move forward on our dreams, the Universe will and does conspire to help.  Doors will open that one didn't know existed.  I am so grateful to live in this loving Universe.  I have found that once we put it out there help is available.  So I am focusing on my desires and not my fears.  As I focus on what I desire, more desires surface and more opportunities become available.  I am open and receptive to all Spirit has for me!, is my affirmation daily.  

I have stated that I'm in transition and I am.  Sometimes we don't want to transition into the next phase of our life.  We can become comfortable where we are but transitions take us higher.  We expand our consciousness and grow into our best selves.  It may not feel that way at first but if we go with the flow and where it takes us, we will end up in a beautiful place. We all wish to expand our consciousness and become more of our God selves, don't we?  I know I do!  Let's become fearless and fly!  

Until next Sunday, 
Merry part and merry meet again,
Blessed be,
Gypsi Mama Michelle

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Richmond, VA/ Growth

Merry meet Friends!
Michelle here, bringing lots of love and light!

"Some periods of our growth are so confusing that we don't even recognize that growth is happening...Those long periods when something inside ourselves seems to be waiting, holding its breath, unsure about what the next step should be, eventually become the periods we wait for, for it is in those periods that we realize that we are being prepared for the next phase of our life and that, in all probability, a new level of the personality is about to be revealed." ~ Alice Walker

"It is always the simple things that change our lives.  And these things never happen when you are looking for them to happen.  Life will reveal answers at the pace life wishes to do so.  You feel like running, but life is on a stroll.  This is how God does things." ~ Donald Miller

I am entering another phase of my life so I understand well what Alice Walker is saying in the above quote.  When we begin to realize that the growth period, which can seem as if nothing is happening, is actually preparing us for the next phase, we begin to look for them. Questions arise about what this phase will reveal.  Who am I becoming?  What will I do?  This is frightening and exhilarating at the same time.  The possible loss of my job has me thinking about the next steps for my life.

 My job is being phased out but the new job title is exactly what we do now.  The new title is Peer Recovery Coach and full time.  The pay is much  higher than the current rate.  I am not interested in a full time position.  There is a part time position entitled Crisis Triage Center Peer Specialist. My volunteer work with Safe Harbor qualifies me for this position.  The hours are flexible and the pay rate is higher than the recovery coach.  I believe I would like this work and it would afford me the opportunity to work on my own business.

My passion is to work with women.  I intend to do this via facilitating workshops, seminars, and retreats.  I have an upcoming workshop on June 4, 2016, entitled "Step Into Your Dreams".  There is a saying that says: "We teach what we most need to learn."  I think that's fitting because we understand what individuals are feeling. Essentially we are teaching ourselves as well.  I certainly will be. Fear has, for the most part, kept me from doing what I strongly desire to do.  The fear hasn't so much been a lack of confidence in my abilities as it has been wondering what others might think.  If I continue with that line of thinking I would never do anything.

Here are the questions that I ask myself.  Do you have a strong desire to do this?  Are you capable of doing this?  Do you think it has benefit to your audience?   The answers to all of the questions are YES!  Each time I feel any doubt or fear I ask myself the questions again.  I will continue to do so until the event, if the fear continues.  Doing this workshop is a dream of mine.  I am "stepping into my dreams", at least one of them.  Experiencing doubt and fear and overcoming them gives me the experience, as it were, to aid others in doing the same.  

I wasn't able to attend the workshop in Maryland on Saturday that I wanted to attend because there was no one to work in my place. The workshop was with Sage-ing International.  The title was Awakening the Sage Within.  The organization deals with conscious aging.  I would like to facilitate a wisdom circle here in Richmond. The workshop isn't required but I wanted to have more information. I still plan to facilitate the circle.  I have all of the documents necessary.  The simple things will change our lives.  A chance reading of something will provide an opportunity previously unknown when one wasn't looking for it. 

On Friday I went to DC to measure the staircase at the venue for my daughter's wedding.  She has a vision of what she wants to see upon entering.  Since I am an artsy/crafty person, I can assist her in making it come true and save her additional expense. We can't decorate until 2pm and the wedding is at 5.  She doesn't want me to undertake too much (I'm doing the bouquets) and not be dressed in time.  Of course I feel as if I can do it all. LOL  I enlisted the help of a friend to come up and do it, with my help if needed.  I'm mentioning this because making the bouquets and decorating a portion of the venue is an opportunity to earn money in the future and feeds that creative crafty side.

I believe it's the Korean culture that says at 60 one becomes a child again and should only have joy in their lives.  I'm all for that!  I anticipate a joyful future doing what I love and using the gifts that God/Goddess/All That Is have given as I "step into my dreams". Won't you do the same regardless of age?

Until next Sunday,
Merry part and merry meet again,
Blessed be,
Gypsi Mama Michelle

Sunday, May 8, 2016

Richmond,VA Mother's Day

Merry meet Friends!
Michelle here, bringing lots of love and light!

"Beautify your inner dialogue. Beautify your inner world with love, light and compassion.  Life will be beautiful." ~ Amit Ray, Nonviolence: The Transforming Power

"Inner guidance is heard like soft music in the night by those who have learned to listen." ~ Vernon Howard

"When you trust your inner guidance and begin moving in the direction of your dreams (aligned with your individual gifts) you will be cloaked in an armor bestowed upon you by your guardian angel." ~ Charles F. Glassman

"Keep on questioning.  Keep on searching." ~ Lailah Gifty Akita, Pearls of Wisdom: Great mind

Happy Mother's Day to all who nurture and mother!
Happy Mother's Day to Gaia, our planet Earth that sustains us!

I have a mother and I am a mother.  I have four beautiful children, 2 boys and 2 girls; I should say 2 men and 2 women because they are adults.  I treat them as such but they are still my babies.  They gave me the gift of motherhood, and I am and always will be eternally grateful that they chose this wild, unpredictable, crazy and unstable at times, intelligent, seeker of truth, empathic being called Michelle to be birthed through.  We teach our children but they also teach us. Sometimes I believe we learn more about being humane and about ourselves through them than they learn from us.

I realized last week that some of my sadness is due to my daughter's upcoming marriage.  I'm not sad about her marriage or her mate.  In analyzing it, I determined that it's about her stepping into another phase of her life which makes me think about the next phase of mine.  My oldest son has been married twice but I was so much younger then, and he is my son.  I'm guessing the feeling is different with daughters or maybe it's just my age.  As she enters this next phase of her life, it raises all sorts of questions about my next phase. How do I plan to spend this next portion of my life?  What is it that I truly desire?  What gifts and talents do I wish to use for the betterment of myself and others?  Will I use them?

Changes are happening everywhere, we are all in a state of transition.  Mercury and other planets are in retrograde.  Life is happening through us not to us.  What is it that we want to come through?  What do I want to come through me?  I've been practicing listening to and for clues that life provides.  I started this practice based on Mark Nepo's book: Seven Thousand Ways to Listen.  Mark says, "What often starts as a moment of unexpected feeling that startles us becomes, if leaned into, a deeper way of knowing."  The sadness I've been feeling was unexpected but it is leading me to uncover some things about me.  Listening to the sadness can propel me into the next phase of my life.  

I receive emails from various organizations.  Some I read and some I trash.  Last week something made me read one before I trashed it. I'm glad I did.  It's leading me to a workshop in Maryland that will lead me to forming something else.  More details after I attend the workshop.  The point is that I stopped to listen to my inner voice and that led to something.  Opportunities will present themselves when we ask the Universe for answers.  I'm not always sure where something will lead me but that's the beauty of the journey.  We can think a thing is leading us one place and we end up finding our"true north".

I'm glad I "stumbled" upon the book by Mark Nepo.  It came at the exact moment that I needed it.  I listen to my inner guidance but I don't/didn't always follow the signs that life would present.  Mark wrote about making plans for a particular day that he had free to do nothing, which he wanted to do, but then began filling it with "things".  He became overwhelmed that he wouldn't have the time to get them done.  As he pumped gas, a bird landed near him then flew off.  He decided to follow the bird.  Whether he actually followed the bird or it was a metaphor for following life clues, makes no difference.  He listened.  Michael Beckwith ministered the same thing a few Sundays ago.  Pay attention to the clues which are everywhere.  Spirit has been trying to get my attention for quite some time with this.  

I recall two of my favorite movies, Fools Rush In and Under the Tuscan Sun stating the same thing.  Clues or signs are everywhere if we /I just pay attention!  Listen, watch, see and hear what Spirit speaks through everyday subtle things we take for granted.  It will make a world of difference.  By the way, I received a package from Colorado which contained old jewelry.  There is no return address.  I have no idea who sent it.  A sign of something, perhaps?

Until next Sunday,
Merry part and merry meet again,
Blessed be,
Gypsi Mama Michelle

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Richmond, VA Transitions

Merry meet Friends!
Michelle here, bringing lots of love and light!

"A lot of people resist transition and therefore never allow themselves to enjoy who they are.  Embrace the change, no matter what it is; once you do, you can learn about the new world you're in and take advantage of it." ~ Nikki Giovanni

"Times of transition are strenuous, but I love them.  They are an opportunity to purge, rethink priorities, and be intentional about new habits.  We can make our new normal any way we want. ~ Kristin Armstrong

"I suppose whenever you go through periods of transition, or in a way, it's a very definite closing of a chapter of your life - I suppose those times are always going to be both very upsetting and also very exciting by the very nature because things are changing and you don't know what's going to happen." ~ Daniel Radcliffe

"Life is one big transition." ~ Willie Stargell

Blessed Beltane, Northern Hemisphere!  Blessed Samhain Southern Hemisphere!

May Day!  When I was in school we danced around the May Pole.  I daresay the schools didn't know they were practicing an ancient Celtic holiday and one of fertility, no less.  What fun it was though! After elementary school, the next time I danced the Maypole was in Earthhaven in 2014.  I also jumped the Beltane fire with Corinna Woods to signify future partnership and luck.  It was a festive day and one I will never forget.I wrote about it in this blog in May 2014.  
I was undergoing a transition during that time and I am undergoing one now.  Perhaps Beltane is that time of year for me. It is a time of reaping wealth from the seeds which have been sown.  I can see why I get restless at this time; I want to reap. Whatever has been sown is waiting to burst through. Oddly enough August is when things seem to change in my life.  Llamas, a festival celebrating the first fruits of the harvest is in August.  Once again, a reminder that my life is tied to The Wheel of the Year.  

Transitions are always happening in our lives.  Sometimes we are aware and sometimes we are not.  When it's due to something major we are more aware.  It's the subtle things that can throw us off guard. "Sometimes the transition from being in control of your life to having no control is swift, but other times it is so gradual that you wonder exactly when it truly began." said Mickey Rooney.  Sometimes it begins with restlessness or dissatisfaction with the way things are. William Throsby Bridges says it this way: "Disenchantment, whether it is a minor disappointment or a major shock, is the signal that things are moving into transition in our lives."  

I can usually tell when I am transitioning.  If I'm working, the job doesn't hold the same appeal that it once did, as is the case with me now.  I will also feel sad or unhappy. I wrote this in my journal on April 25th:
     Happiness is a temporary feeling.  It comes and goes...up one day, hour, minute and down the next.  I can choose to be happy regardless of the circumstances I may be facing, knowing that 'this too shall pass/'  Yet I am NOT happy.  I know that things will usually work themselves out.  I also know that 'all things work together for good for those that love GOD and are called for GOD's purpose'.  I love GOD and my belief is that we are all called...therefore everything in my life is working together, not just for my good but the highest good of all.  Yet, I am NOT happy.  I'm going through another "dark night of the soul" as coined by St. John of the Cross in his eight stanza poem.
I wish for this job to be over NOW, not June or July, NOW.  I don't desire this type of  work anymore, noble though it may be.  I'm burnt out and worn down.  The energy field from the clients can be overwhelming, especially without a break for 8 hours.  I dread coming to work.  I don't look forward to it as I once did.  I don't have the energy anymore.  My soul and spirit are crying for something else but I'm not sure what that is.
What would make my spirit soar? What would make my soul sing? Experts say we already know the answer.

I can't be there for the clients 100% as long as I feel this way.  I don't treat them any differently but the ones closest to me will ask if something is wrong.  They can see it, I believe. I have decided to be a part of the ministry my friend is forming.  I am also planning to utilize my gifts, before I'm not able to do so, in my own ventures.  I am basically self taught through reading although I hold several certificates from classes, programs and workshops.  I don't have a degree though and it undermines my confidence slightly.  I know what I know and what I am capable of doing but the "world" will sometimes want more credentials than I have.  Spirit is calling me to come forth however so I must not let fear paralyze me.  I must step out on faith, trusting that if Spirit calls me then Spirit qualifies me.

Transition, transition, transition!  Strenuous, as stated in the above quote yet I do love them.  A time to grow and be more of who we are.

Until next Sunday,
Merry part and merry meet again, 
Blessed be,
Gypsi Mama Michelle

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Richmond, VA

Merry meet Friends!
Michelle here, bringing lots of love and light!

"When fate arrives at your door, there is no lock strong enough to hold it back.  It  may find you asleep, unprepared, too busy, or defiant, but these states are not a deterrent.  Destiny does not wait for your mood to change.  When the time is ripe, the rite of passage begins. ...
This is known as the call and it comes in many forms.  It may begin as a restless dissatisfaction with your daily life, or a deep depression. It may result from a churning in your gut over the daily news, or an inspiring story told to you by a friend.  It may come from a tragic loss, or an unexpected boon.  But however the call finds its way into your private chambers, it changes the course of your life."   ~ Anodea Judith, Awakening the Global Heart

"If you ask me what I came to do in this world, I, an artist, will answer you: I am here to live out loud".  ~ Emile Zola

"I believe there's a calling for all of us,  I know that every human being has value and purpose.  The real work of our lives is to become aware.  And awakened.  To answer the call."  ~ O[rah Winfrey

"The crowning fortune of a man is to be born to some pursuit which finds him employment and happiness, whether it be to make baskets, or broadswords, or canals, or statues, or songs."  ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

"If God gives you something you can do, why in God's name wouldn't you do it?" ~ Stephen King

I attended a vision meeting on yesterday for a friend who wishes to start a Spiritual Life Center.  I am honored that she chose me to be a part of the planning and to be a part of the ministry.  We were told by a former pastor of hers that we would work together.  This pastor was one I heard on a local television broadcast many years ago as I surfed through stations.  She said something that made me pay attention.  I called the TV station to get her information and I gave her a call.  I wanted to know where she obtained her information.  Among other things, she mentioned a book called "The Holy Grail".  I found it in the library.  I found that scripture was quoted incorrectly and things were said that I, in my "religious" state of mind at the time, could/would not accept.  I set out, for my own edification, to prove the author wrong.  Along the way, like Paul on the Damascus road, the light of truth prevailed.  It has been my quest since then to seek and find truth,

Anyway, my friend's vision is similar, as far as what she wishes to offer, to a vision I had, again, many years ago.  The name of the center was to be named after one of my poems.  I saw the vision quite plainly.  It was to be a place for women.  The thing that held me back was money.  However, there are ways around having the upfront money; for instance, grants.  I often get ideas but let them die in the thought realm.  Some say if a dream doesn't come to fruition that it must not have been from the Creator.  I used to believe that at one time, I don't anymore.  I think many ideas are buried in the graves with the ones given the ideas and I believe they came from GOD.  We don't always act on what we are given.  I used to tell my children that Spirit rained down ideas and it was up to us to catch them and more importantly, do them.  How many times has someone said, "Someone needs to invent thus and so," only to see the "thing" later?  

One can argue that particular thing may not have been your calling and that may be true.  That doesn't mean the person could not have acted upon it and sold the idea, advancing what possibly is the calling.  We don't know.  What I do know is that "the call" does come to each of us at some point in our lives.  One may say that he or she has never received a call but as stated in the first quote, it comes in many ways and we all have felt one of those ways. Granted, we may not have recognized it as call.  We may have just thought it a fleeting feeling but it is definitely a call.  What have you been feeling in your heart?  Are you hearing to do something that you feel is quite impossible for you?  Is there something you wish to do but feel you would be persecuted or ostracized?  People are still being burned at the stake or stoned for living their truths.  Answer the call!  Do what GOD has given you the ability to do!  

Sometimes we feel as if we aren't able to do it or we aren't worthy. If Spirit gives it to us, we can do it.  Whining, complaining and fighting will not change the call.  Hello, Moses, Jonah and whomever else. We may not always act on ideas that we are given, but do answer what will not leave us in peace; in other words: the calling.  It may not be what one has planned, or take one where one wishes to go but it will lead to a life most rewarding.  A life of being true to one's self, a genuine authentic life and that in itself is the call.

"But beware of this about callings:they may not lead us where we intended to go or even where we want to go.  If we choose to follow, we may have to be willing to let go of the life we already planned and accept whatever is waiting for us.  And if the calling is true, though we not have gone where we intended, we will surely end up where we need to be." ~ Steve Goodier

Until next Sunday, 
Merry part and merry meet again,
Blessed be, 
Gypsi Mama Michelle

Monday, April 18, 2016

Richmond, VA

Merry meet Friends!
Michelle here, bringing lots of love and light!

"Be gentle with yourself.  Be kind to yourself.  You may not be perfect, but you are all you've got to work with.  The process of becoming who you will be begins first with the total acceptance of who you are.." ~ Bhante Henepola Gunaratana, Mindfulness in Plain English

"When she transformed into a butterfly, the caterpillars spoke not of her beauty, but of her weirdness.  They wanted her to change back into what she had been.  But she had wings." ~ Dean Jackson

"What the caterpillar calls the end of the world the master calls a butterfly." ~ Richard Bach

"As with the butterfly, adversity is necessary to build character in people." ~ Joseph B. Wirthlin

"In order for the butterfly to emerge, the caterpillar that it once was must completely give up its life." ~ excerpt from MoonCat @Mother Tongue Ink 2011

"I'm still like a butterfly going from one job to another job.  But it's quite lovely - I hope to keep the freedom, to have fun." ~ Carrie Roitfeld

I've been contemplating more than usual this week; and for me, that's saying something.  I believe I've mentioned before that my employment may soon be over with Rubicon due to a merger with RBHA.  Our jobs will be phased out.  I do qualify for the job that's closest to mine except in one aspect; I am not now, nor have I ever been in recovery or have two years clean because of that.  I've heard all of the jobs are full time and I don't desire that.  I'm not bothered by these events.  I am looking forward to traveling again and creating.  I believe this is the reason for my contemplative state.  I've also been feeling sad, not because of the job but because I don't feel as if I'm being fully myself.

My thoughts turn to Earthaven at this time of year.  I miss the idea of the place....being at one with nature, growing food, and living in community. I'm not planning to return there but maybe somewhere similar?  Also, whenever I read or hear anything about Celtic lore I feel a sadness, as if I'm longing for something, someplace familiar. Sometimes it feels as if I'm losing myself but oddly enough it also feels as if I'm finding myself.  The ancient calls out to me and I wonder will happiness elude me if I don't answer?  

We are all in the state of becoming who we are, just like the caterpillar.  The caterpillar has to be a caterpillar first and be content with that state; knowing that what it presently is, is not what it will be.  Actually what it will be is already within the caterpillar; and so it is with us as well. To become a butterfly is a process that the caterpillar must endure; a process that ends with the death of the caterpillar. Does the caterpillar look forward to the death of its present self knowing what awaits?  Is the caterpillar content with being a caterpillar?  Does it dream of the day that it is not earth bound?  Does it dream of the day it will fly?  Would it rather remain in the caterpillar state only seeing the world from the ground?

It doesn't matter whether it's content or not. life and nature will run its natural course.  Is it that way for us as well?  Will we be what we are destined to be?  Will it take more than one lifetime for it to happen, if we don't listen?  Some of us dream of soaring and some of us are content with a ground view.  Is that a destiny too, to be earth bound?  I suppose it is, for there are chickens and there are eagles.  An eagle raised with chickens will look to the heavens and feel as if it doesn't belong.  One day it may spread its wings and soar. But there is always the possibility of the chickens telling the eagle that it is foolish and can not fly.  The sad thing is, the eagle may listen and not find its true self/life.  

Every ending is also a beginning.  It may be an unknown beginning but a beginning none the less.  Every ending is a death of some sort. Life is possible after death albeit a different life than one knew previously.  What an adventure we creatures have awaiting us! Something must end in order for something else to emerge.  We don't know what that might be but isn't that the thrilling part?  Mysteries, I've always loved them and I probably always will.  What awaits on the other side of the door?  What's next on the agenda of my life, our lives?  I don't know.  What freedom and what fun!

Until next Sunday, (LOL maybe)
Merry part and merry meet again,
Blessed be,
Gypsi Mama Michelle

Sunday, April 10, 2016


Merry meet Friends!
Michelle here, bringing lots of love and light!

"Don't try to prove to everybody that the reason why you can't is that nobody could.  It's no excuse.  You can break the tradition by being the first person to make it happen!" ~ Israelmore Ayivor, Daily Drive 365

"It's quite a scary path to walk, when you have no one's past experience to lean on, or learn from.  It's all new and uncharted.  But nothing is finished unless it is started." ~ Innoceent Mwatsikesimbe, Reality Check: A Collection of Poems

"Great things often come from actions and decision taken by others, that are deemed wild, stupid or unreasonable at the time, but later prove to be very useful."  ~Innocent Mwatsikesimbe, The Reason

"Don't be a prisoner of the past, become a pioneer of the future." ~ Farshad Asi 

I'm still watching murder mysteries.  The latest is the Murdoch Mysteries set in Victorian-era Toronto.  Detective Murdoch was raised by Catholic nuns and is in a state of conflict between his religious upbringing and his scientific mind.  The forensic pathologist is a woman.  He admires her and is falling in love with her.  Her view of life is more open minded than his. Her name is Dr. Ogden.  She is from a wealthy family, has traveled extensively, is intelligent and bold.  She has chosen a career that most women in that era would not have chosen.  I admire that.

In one episode a doctor who has a facility for gifted people, made a statement about women.  He said, "Miss Pringle possesses an extraordinary brain for a woman.  Men have a brain capacity of up to 19% larger.  Women's brains are not designed for complex thought, their reproductive organs sapping energy from any further development."  Detective Murdoch asked if that had been proven, to which the doctor replied, there have been naysayers.  I said, "You think?"  Detective Murdoch doesn't buy into this theory because of Dr. Ogden.

There have always been women pioneers.  Women who forged ahead with their thoughts and ideas;  women who were thought to be crazy because of their ideas.  Some were even burned at the stake as witches, all because they knew certain herbs and plants could heal or kill; or because they intuitively knew things.  A term that was used to describe women's behavior was called "Female Hysteria" "Female hysteria was a once-common diagnosis, reserved exclusively for women, which is today no longer recognized by medical authorities as a medical disorder.  It's diagnosis and treatment were routine for many hundreds of years in Western Europe." (Wikipedia)    A woman having sexual thoughts, orgasms and engaging in masturbation were signs.  

Thank God/Goddess/All That Is, that this is no longer true!  Some may still believe it but it's not a diagnosis anymore.  No, what we most commonly hear now is:"It's that time of the month.".  Yes, it is true that women are highly sensitive at that time and rightly so.  It is a time when women receive dreams and visions if they pay attention. This is why women went into The Red Tent during biblical times.  It was in order for the women to come together to nurture one another and be free of the demands of society; a practice which would do well today.  Women are empathetic during their menses and can pick up on the vibrations of others.  This may be a reason for the off balance women feel at this time.  

We have all felt indignation about something, and some do something about it.  Those people,women and men, are considered pioneers if nothing had been done in the past.  I believe had I lived in what we call pioneer days, I would have gone in the covered wagon to new lands and new adventures.  I may be considered a pioneer in certain things that I have done but I haven't pioneered any sort of movement.  I have not acted on any indignation other than to speak to whomever would listen.  I am on a soapbox about women's issues though.  There have been many women activists who have inspired others to do the work they wish to do.  Here are a few:

Kishida Toshiko: Japan, 1863-1901, Writer and Activist
  "If it is true that  men are better than women because they are stronger, why aren't our sumo wrestlers in the government?" 

Carrie Chapman Catt: United Stataes, 1859-1947, President, National American Woman Suffrage Association
  "To the wrongs that need resistance, To the right that needs assistance, To the future in the distance, Give yourselves."

Rosa Parks: United States, 1913-2005, "First Lady of Civil Rights"
  "Each person must live their lives as a model for others."

Mother Teresa: Republic of Macedonia, 1919-1997, Missionaries of Charity
  "I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples."

Arundhati Roy: India, 1930 - , Author and Political Activist
   "Another world is not only possible, she is on her way.  On a quiet day, I can hear her breathing."

Ellen Johnson Sirleaf: Liberia, 1938- , Africa's "Iron Lady", first female head of state
  "If your dreams do not scare you, they are not big enough."

Be inspired to go out and change the world, if only your world!

Until next Sunday, 
Merry part and merry meet again,
Blessed be,
Gypsi Mama Michelle

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Richmond, VA

Merry meet Friends!
Michelle here, bringing lots of love and light!

"If you have never been called a defiant, incorrigible, impossible woman....have faith...there is yet time."  ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estes

"A vibrant and independent woman is much more beautiful than a woman who waits for people to validate her existence." ~ Kelly McNelis Senegor

"Women are made to be loved, not understood." ~ Oscar Wilde

"Women are like tricks by sleight of hand, which to admire, we should not understand." ~ William Congreve

I am fascinated by the mind and how it works.  I believe this is one of the reasons I like mysteries.  I like solving them.  As a child I read Nancy Drew and The Hardy Boys, then my Aunt Pat started my sister and me on Agatha Christie mysteries; Hercule Poirot and Miss Jane Marple.  As I aged I read other authors and watched mysteries on film and television.  Recently I've been watching murder mysteries on Netflix: Midsomer Murders, Agatha Christie's Poirot, and Ms. Fisher's Murder Mysteries.  Midsomer Murders began in the 90's and runs through the present; Poirot is set in the 30's and Ms. Fisher is set in the late 20's. and revolves around the personal and professional life of Phryne Fisher.

I usually know "who done it".  I'm not sure if the reason I know with Poirot is because I've read most if not all of Christie's books and it's in my conscious, even though it's been years.  At any rate I do have excellent deductive skills, if I do say so myself.  I started watching Ms. Fisher because it's a mystery but was soon fixated on the fashion and her personality.  Ms. Fisher is considered a "modern" woman of the 20's.  She is independently wealthy, a lady detective with a pearl handled gun worn in her garter, and has a mind of her own.  Phryne is one of the first feminists, even having birth control pills. She chooses not to get married which was the goal for most women of that time.  She is aware of her sexuality and has many lovers yet she maintains her style and class.

Phryne is intelligent, adventurous (she can drive an airplane), and a champion for the people.  I am sure she is considered incorrigible. Incorrigible means (of a person or their tendencies) not able to be corrected, improved, or reformed.  I admire women who know themselves and are not afraid to be themselves.  I believe there were many Phryne Fisher's of that time.  I wonder if I had lived during that time if I would have been one?  I think I may have been but I am also thinking with the mindset of today.  In the same way that people with the mind of today, will say had they lived during slavery, they would have fought back or said this or that.  

As I looked back over the decades of my life: the 50's, 60's, 70's, 80's,90's 00's and 10's and recalled some of my escapades, I do indeed feel as if I would have been the "woman incorrigible".  I would change the definition from "not able to be corrected, improved, or reformed to choosing not to be corrected, improved, or reformed".  There is always room for improvement, reformation and correction, if needed, and I am in favor of such.  I think we are not to take the definition so literally.  No, incorrigible to me, means living in an authentic way; being true to one's self, and living and speaking one's truth.  

Women defined in this way are usually not understood, even by other women, which saddens me.  I find that the majority of women who come to this state of incorrigible mind, do so in their later years. It's as if they say, "Enough is enough!, I will be who I am!". Nothing is more beautiful than a woman knowing herself and standing in all that she is.  This is definitely my goal.  I've always spoken my mind but there have been times when I haven't always spoken my truth.  I don't wish to hurt anyone's feelings but going against the grain of my being to please others is not an option for me any longer.  I will live and speak my truth in love and I wish others to do the same. I believe we know we have reached that stage when we say the things to our children that we don't sugarcoat.

I want everyone to be empowered to live the fullest life imagined but my calling is to women.  Sometimes we have to walk in something before we can help others to overcome.  As a survivor of rape, domestic violence and breast cancer which did not but could have killed me, I am an overcomer.  I did not survive any of those things for myself only.  I have an obligation to help other women to survive as well.  As an elder in my crone years, I feel as if I have some wisdom.  The Bible, one of many wisdom books, says that the older women are to teach the younger.  We are teaching ourselves as well, for as the saying goes: "We teach what we most need to learn."  I will continue this journey of coming home to myself  and I wish for others the same.

Until next Sunday,
Merry part and merry meet again,
Blessed be!,
Gypsi Mama Michelle

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Richmond, VA

Merry meet Friends!
Michelle here,
Bringing lots of love and light!

"There are times when life sharpens, things come into focus and, gradually, you become aware that you are standing before a threshold.  There is no way back to where you were before, and there is no way out but through." ~ John O'Donohue, "Foreword," in Angeles Arrien, The Second Half of Life

"Everything is laid out for you.  Your path is straight ahead of you.  Sometimes it's invisible, but it's there.  You may not know where it's going, But you have to follow that path.  It's the path to the Creator.  It's the only path there is.  ~ Chief Leon Shenandoah, in Andrew Harvey, The Direct Path

"Say yes to being alive.  Yes to life.  Yes to your own life.  Yes to each year, each day.  Yes to each minute.
Imagine that life is whispering yes.  Yes to all beings, and yes to you. Everything you've said yes to is saying yes to you.  Even the things you've said no to are saying yes to you!
Each breath, each heartbeat, each surge across a synapse: each one says yes.  Yes, all yes, all saying yes.

Yes.            ~ Rick Hanson, Just One Thing

Thanks to One Spirit Interfaith Seminary for the postings

Happy Resurrection Sunday to all!  Whether one celebrates Easter or not, the act of resurrecting ourselves can be celebrated by each and every one of us.  Fellow OSIS graduate, Paul Dodenhoff, wrote a post on Facebook this morning eloquently stating, regardless of his personal beliefs, why he celebrates Easter.  I commented to him that his words reminded me of words that I spoke in a service back in the 90's.  I spoke about the death, burial and resurrection all taking place within we die to the things of the world/ego, bury them and allow the Christ consciousness to become alive in us.  It does not matter to what spiritual tradition one ascribes; the Christ, consciousness, the Buddha consciousness or whatever name one uses, is what we all seek.  It is the consciousness in which Jesus walked.  

When I consciously began my spiritual transformation (I say consciously because we are always transforming whether we are aware or not) I would be in a turmoil around holidays.  Turmoil because I knew that most Christian holidays had that origins in the pagan celebrations.  Many of the holidays were blended with the pagan celebrations in order for both sides to participate.  I was not in turmoil because of paganism, it was because I felt that everything I had been taught in my Christian upbringing and by the church was a falsehood.  Gradually, with time and understanding, I could see the spiritual meaning underlying the physical and no longer felt hypocritical in giving the traditional holiday greetings.  Being an Interfaith/Interspiritual minister has helped in that regard.  I honor all paths as I follow my own.

It has taken me many years to "become" who I am....many books, many classes, many thoughts, many questions, few answers (or so it seemed) and the beauty is, I am still becoming!  I have stood at the "threshold" wondering whether to go through or not; knowing I couldn't go back to who I had been and not knowing what lay before me.  Truly there was "no way out but through" as stated above.  Our paths are always before us.  I believe we know them as children but we get sidetracked by "others"; parents, families, teachers, friends, and we forget ourselves.  But the path is always calling us home, back to ourselves and what the Creator intended for us.  Do we always listen, do we always answer?  When we don't, we are filled with a longing, a restlessness that is inescapable until we do answer and become who we are.  

Even as we do become, we are asked to "come up higher" at each level.  Each time I begin to relax, thinking that I have arrived at "me", I get that old familiar feeling.  Who am I?  What am I here to offer?  What is my place in this world?  I find myself in this place; right here, right now.  I am always on a quest it seems.  I hear the call to grow and grow I must. I stand before the threshold again.  No longer who I was but not yet who I am.  I see the destination but the path isn't always clear.  It's as if a mist is covering it.  Sometimes it dissipates and I'm able to see and move a little further but then the mist appears again...I stand still because I'm not sure of the way.  I wonder if it's because I'm not saying "yes" to what appears before me.  Am I letting fear stop me from reaching my destination?  We can know where we are headed but because it's an unknown, there can be fear and trepidation to proceed.  

The path of life that we walk may have casualties along the way.  We lose people, places and things.  It is not intentional and not always what we wish to see happen but it is inevitable.  When we no longer fit our former lives we need to discard it, in the same way we do clothes, shoes and worn out furniture.  Holding on in the hope that it can be used creates clutter and leaves no room for the new that's waiting to appear.  Things can be altered but left in its current state, it is of no further use, to you anyway.  The new is waiting to unfold in our lives.  This is the season of renewal.  It is time to bury the old.  It is time to let new life arise.  It is time to resurrect!

Until next Sunday,
Merry part and merry meet again,
Blessed be,
Gypsi Mama Michelle

Sunday, March 20, 2016

New York, NY/ Richmond, VA

Merry meet Friends!
Michelle here, bringing lots of love and light!

"There's a race of men that don't fit in,
A race that can't sit still;
So they break the hearts of kith and kin, 
And they roam the world at will.
They range the field and rove the flood,
And they climb the mountain's crest; 
Their's is the curse of the gypsy blood,
And they don't know how to rest." ~ Robert W. Service

"To belong nowhere is a blessing and a curse, like any kind of freedom." Leah Stewart, The Myth of You and Me

"The Wanderlust has got the belly-aching fire" ~ Robert W. Service, Rhymes of  a Rolling Stone

"Nostalgia in reverse, the longing for yet another strange land, grew especially strong in spring" ~ Vladimir Nabokov, Mary

HAPPY SPRING EQUINOX!  This is the first day of Spring 2016 for the Northern Hemisphere.  The day and the night are equally as long.  Flowers will begin to bloom and the weather will become increasingly warmer, even if we do see snow flakes before March makes its exit.  Today is also Psalm Sunday and many will sport psalms on their coats.

Last Sunday morning, while still in NY, I met my friend, Rev. Sonya Brown.  Sonya is a graduate of One Spirit Interfaith Seminary, as am I.  We met at the Unity Church on West 58th Street.  Normally when I am in NY on a Sunday, I attend The Church of Christ of Harlem with my son Jason.  I know how to get around in NY.  I'm not always sure which subway to take to reach my destination but once I know, I'm fine.  Jason always tells me to "keep your phone on, Mom and text when you get there".  The children indeed become the parents.  But as my oldest daughter Zakiya said, "You should have raised crappy children if you don't want us concerned."  I am grateful for them.  LOL

I always enjoy Unity services at any location; this was no exception. The minister is a young man and full of life.  His message was about love and recognizing the fears that can keep us from loving.  At one point he referenced Guru Satchidananda of Yogaville.  I have visited Yogaville on more than one occasion.  I received Mantra Initiation there in the 90's and received the name "Nitya (one devoted to truth or the eternal) from Satchidananda.  The pastor and I spoke briefly after service.  I asked if he had ever visited Yogaville.  Not only had he visited, he had participated in some of the building.  His mom lived there for awhile.  His family is originally from Norfolk and moved to Richmond later.  I enjoyed sharing with him and will visit again when I return to NY.

Sonya and I walked over to the shops in Columbus Circle and had lunch at Whole Foods.  I absolutely love Columbus Circle!  I love the energy of the area.  Sonya and I sat and talked about doing some workshops together in the very near future.  I eagerly await that! After lunch we took the train back uptown to 116th Street.  We walked to the African Harlem Outdoor Market.  I try to visit there each time I'm in NY.  Neither Sonya or myself saw any earrings of note.  We did see some colorful scarfs for $5, which can be worn as head wraps.  Sonya and I parted ways at the corner she needed for her train and I continued on to the train I needed.  A man walked up behind me and said he liked my outfit.  I thanked him and we talked until he reached his destination.  He gave me his card and asked me to call.  The card has his picture on it and his eyes are very intense in that picture...almost a little scary.

When I returned to Jason's apartment, his friend was there as well. I sat down to eat the remainder of my food as they tried to decide where to eat.  Jason said that in his head (a trait inherited from his dad), he had planned to take us to the Haitian restaurant Grandchamps, in Brooklyn. I told him that he should have said something earlier but I would ride and get take out for later.  I ordered the Turkey Tasso plate; bone on turkey with Djon Djon (Haitian Black Rice), plantains and vegetables.  I had Pain Patate (sweet potato bread pudding) for dessert.  The meal, which I had later, was good but I must say that the Djon Djon I had at Gina Desire's house was tastier.  I decided to watch a little "Poirot" on Netflix and went to bed.

Jason booked my return to Richmond, Monday on the 2pm train.  I so enjoy the train and with the exception of one stop had the seats to myself.  The ride was uneventful but comfy.  I was picked up at the station and taken to my car at the bus parking lot.  I retired early as I had to work the next day.  On Thursday, my friend Celeste and I went on a day trip to Maryland Live.  We left at 7am and returned by 7pm.  It was a beautiful day. I enjoy watching people play and hearing the slot machines.  We had lunch in the mall at Chili's. These trips will usually give a better portion of the ticket money back.  One can use it to play or cash it in.  It makes it worthwhile.

Friday was a day of rest.  I worked on Saturday and will work today.  I will be off this weekend.  Hopefully I will return to NY this week and spend Easter with Jason at his church.  The traveling bug has bitten and I am not satisfied with remaining in one place for too long. causes one to dream of distant places and new adventures.  My heart and spirit hear the call and I will answer.

Until next Sunday,
Merry part and merry meet again,
Blessed be,
Gypsi Mama Michelle