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Monthly Archives: August 2012

When working toward a goal it is not uncommon to experience discouragement along the way. Even though we know that achieving our dreams will take hard work and tedious attention, when the trip grows long and laborious we begin to doubt our path, or grow weary of the journey. We may even consider abandoning the trek in favor of the path of least resistance. I have been in such a place for the past four or five months. I’ve grown weary of the endless papers, academic writing, dry, heady readings, and never-ending deadlines. When one quarter ends, another begins, again and again and again. I have doubted my abilities and wondered if I even want to persist to the end. All that changed however, when I spent the past week in Arlington, VA, at a required colloquia with hundreds of other aspiring mental health counselors. Divided into cohorts of 10 to 12 students each, we worked intensely in a classroom setting from morning till night honing our skills, critiquing our shortcomings, strategizing plans to improve what we do and move into our fieldwork settings. AND we affirmed each other. I was privileged to be in a group with nine other amazing, strong, capable, compassionate and dedicated women. Our instructors were phenomenal experienced counselors and teachers. During the week I repeatedly received affirmation that I was indeed in the right profession, and the journey was worth continuing. I came away from the experience awed by the beauty of each person there. We came with our flaws, our torn wings (see photo), our less than perfect personhood, but when the light of affirmation shown on each of us, just like that butterfly, the beauty was dazzling. Affirmation of a job well done, or for being the persons we were meant to be, revitalizes and beautifies. The path doesn’t look so treacherous anymore because we have light to illuminate our way. I am ever so grateful for the power of affirmation. Hugs to my cohort. You are truly beautiful women.

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This was a wonderfully glorious morning! Cool temperatures and moist air, breaking dawn and chirping birds joined to make sitting on the deck a meditative experience. Sipping coffee and listening to various bird melodies, I watched the sun peek through puffy clouds and streak planks of light across roofs, cars, lawns and yes, roses that continue to bloom. This morning, after months of drought, dampness and earthy smells lifted my spirits. I am grateful for drinking coffee out on the deck in the cool, misty, early morning!

Every morning the first words out of my mouth are a blessing offering thanks for having lived through another night and awaking to a new day. Each day, whether I’m “feeling it” or not, offers possibilities for growth, understanding, forgiveness, creating, working, building, and on and on. I am grateful for that prayer of thanks, and its reminder that daily possibilities for healing, hope, abundance and love abound. I am grateful for possibilities!

This drought is the worst in decades. Lakes and ponds are drying up. Rivers are low and running hot. Wildlife and human life suffers in times like these. We pray for rain. I find myself regretting those times I complained about the weather because I had “fun” things to do, and weather interrupted my plans. Now I awake each morning, look out at the sky and hope to see rain clouds on the horizon. Water is a precious commodity. Then, last night I heard distant rolls of thunder. Could it be? The air became heavy with humidity. I opened the doors and watched and waited as the clouds rolled in. By dusk the first drops began to fall. I don’t know how long it rained, but we were having a downpour by the time I went to bed. I awoke this morning to rain. Glorious rain. It didn’t last long after the daybreak, but when I ventured outside everything was wet; wonderfully, wildly, “welcomingly” wet! The skies stayed overcast till late this afternoon when the sun came out again. But there were intermittent sprinkles throughout the day. Did we get enough to replenish our water supplies? No. Not nearly. But every drop we did receive was welcome relief from the dryness and the heat that characterizes this summer. So, today and for many days to come, I am ecstatically grateful for rain!

p.s. If you look at Gratitude 131, it is also gratitude for rain. That was June 17. We were already experiencing drought conditions then. Today’s gratitude is the first rain we’ve had since then (other than a spit or two from the heavens now and then.)

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