It is an absolutely gorgeous morning in Portland, Oregon today. The kind that goes down in the books as perfect in my book: blue skies, a crispness to the air, the smell of fall in the air, falling leaves, and a "just so" angle to the sun that is a sign of an approaching winter/settling in season. Then add sleeping kids, hot coffee, a quiet house, a morning after some much needed time with a best girlfriend and a conversation with a dear friend, and time alone with my thoughts and an old journal and you have a simply perfectly peaceful start to the day.
I found this journal on my shelf yesterday when I was looking for a book to write some things down that I want separate from my other journal. This book was never lost, but along with all my other journals, it just sits on my shelf collecting dust and holding pieces of my life and heart. I'm so glad I took it down yesterday because looking through it has been such a slice of peace for me. It is a book that was given to me by my dear soul sister of a friend, Jenny back in the summer of 2000. It is a book that I originally started keeping quotes and pieces of writing that touched me deeply. Almost immediately, it became a place where I felt free to try my own hand at writing poetry or pieces that came to me but I was too embarrassed to share. And now it is a beautiful book that has all sorts of writing stuffed into it...my own, old letters to me, poetry written for/to me from long ago, quotes and snippets of writing that have touched my life, etc. What began as a start to healing and furthering my spiritual journey after such an abusive experience with religion, grew into a collection of "Written treasures" and I'm looking forward to adding to it....so much left to this book.
Here's the beginning entry that doesn't necessarily have anything to do with my views/thoughts now (although, not entirely, I've worked through so much of my issues that came from being in an abusive church/religion) but were so real back then. Funny how our life goes in circles...more often than not we come back to the root of the person we once were at some of the most powerful times in our life even when it means taking a long journey around before we return. I'm thankful that I've always written my heart down and that I can go back to reread...we can always learn from ourselves
7-22-00 (age 21)
"I am starting this journal as a step--a new step to taking me further on my spiritual journey. I am so very hungry for spiritual food right now and I'm starting to realize more and more that I can be CLOSE to GOD....without religion. God is in me and it is up to me to seek that love out in myself, the people given to me and the life that surrounds me. So many wounds have started to heal and that feels so wonderful to me. Each new friendship, each new life song and beauty, that comes into my life for the first time just reveals more and more of God's love. Thanks to my sweet Jenny C--my friend, my soul sister, I have this book to fill with things of my choice--things that touch my heart, heal me, and draw me closer to God without the pain and judgement that has come from religious abuse...and things that make me more aware of life...the here, the now, and the life ahead of me. The life that is so very simple and intricate at the same time."
I'm sure I'll offend some with my words about religion and God. But it is what is and that's where I was when I wrote this. There are still parts of me that are overly cautious about religion and the place that church holds in our world (even though we do attend a church and want to raise our kids in a church ). Such a tricky subject for me and one that is forever evolving. A subject I'm not afraid to be open about...it is part of me and people can judge if they want...I'm at a point in my life where I feel free enough to say how I feel without giving power to how others will judge me...I don't want those people in my life...not enough room for that. Thankful for a constant love in my life no matter where I am with religion. I choose to embrace love...it is everywhere. This is the essence of God to me.
As if this post isn't random enough, I think I'll add some more random in pictures and captions to go with this beautiful Wednesday that is so full of hope:
"Sara, you are an incredible gift to so so many of us. YOU, beautiful you. Thank you for giving so much to the EVERYTHING around you ...just...by...being YOU. Thank you for making me laugh today. I left, as always when I leave you, feeling beyond blessed to know you. I love you."
|One of my recent goals is to start reading more often like I used to. So good for the brain and in just being still with ourselves. |
|I miss getting REAL mail in my mailbox: letters written and sent...waited for with anticipation, opened eagerly like a gift, savored, and tucked away to read again someday. So glad I saved the special ones.|
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