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Embracing, Learning, Changing

Good Morning, Good Afternoon, Good Evening -- wherever you are and whatever time it is, I am so happy you are "here" with me. When you stop and take a moment in your day or night to read my humble blogette, it makes my heart sing. Honestly, I swear I can often feel the connection. Thank you for being part of my community.

Come, be present, take a deep breath in and out ... these are times that we did not necessarily expect, and yet, they are not entirely surprising. It's as if we've been living with an undercurrent, sometimes unsettling, sometimes "just there, in the background". When I've taught a course in stress management and mindfulness, we've often talked about feeling like we are waking up. Naropa University is a private school in Boulder, Colorado that describes itself as Buddhist-inspired and I heard that their president once said that their students were awake. Lately, at times, I feel like I'd rather be asleep. But, I know that won't result in a good feeling. It's like staying in bed after shutting the alarm off. It might seem hard to face the day and I might even fall back asleep, however I never wake up the second time feeling well or rested. I usually feel like I wish I had jumped out of bed when I heard the first notes of, "Love Is In the Air" by Count Dee (yes, that is my alarm ringtone!).

I call my Monday Quotes "Divine Downloads" because they'll come to me, often while driving, and out of the blue (or pink or yellow or green ...). Often they will come in batches, as if I've somehow plugged in for a bit and I'm getting some important information. I send them along to my assistant and she pulls them from the ongoing file every other week. I love the element of surprise when she sends me a quote that I've completely forgotten about and this week was no different except that it was particularly relevant:

"We learn from difference, not from sameness."

- Gloria Steinem

"Especially when we look at difference with interest and curiosity,

not fear. Then, we expand and evolve."


It would be incredibly boring if everyone and everything were the same. Many times when we look at a couple we might think, "opposites attract" and it makes sense that there is an interest in finding each other exotic. There would be no conversation worth having if we all thought exactly the same. Contrast is what propels us forward, helps us to understand what we like or don't like, what makes us feel good or not so great. Being different should not be a basis for fear and yet, many times, it is . The phrase "agree to disagree" should be a platform where we can respect one another and also be open to expanding our awareness.

At the same time, there needs to be room for appreciating the sameness. If we are all human beings, all spiritual entities having a human, earthly experience together, can we start there? If we put a group of crawling babies of every shape, size and color together in a room, wouldn't they want to approach each other with wonder and interest? Where do we learn to hate and why? If it's because we become wounded and we learn from scarred adults, how can we begin to heal? I don't have too many answers, yet. I do know that we must find more love within ourselves and self-compassion and then open up our hearts. The solution to any problem never comes from the same energy as the problem itself. Whether it's a pandemic or outrage at injustices, we need to wake up and look for what we want and what we can do differently and examine our desire for change . It will probably feel uncomfortable at first, but that's just the new, unfamiliar energy stirring within. We must continue to inform ourselves and evolve and expand. As Maya Angelou said,

"Do the best you can until you know better.

Then, when you know better, do better."

This is what I wish for you and for all of us.

Sparkles and Love,

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About the Author




Barbara L Cummings, MS, RN

is a sassy Queen-ager whose mission is to co-create a happier, healthier life with and for others.

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