Open Your Eyes!

As I type these words snuggled up in my bed in my hotel room in Louisville, Kentucky, I cannot believe that the date is August 4th! We all have these goals, these expectations that we set for ourselves, and then suddenly time gets the best of us. I actually had no expectations of how much I was going to write on here during this trip. The only promise I made to myself was that I would do my absolute best to always “live in the now” and truly take in every single moment and just LIVE! So, I’m sorry that it’s been a while.. you could say I was busy “living” across the county, but now I’m ready to share some wisdom with all of you 🙂

As most of you know, my mom passed away on December 2nd, 2010, when I was just 16 years old. I miss her every single day and I’m especially missing her on this trip. I know that she would be supporting me and giving me guidance and wisdom throughout this journey. I also know that she is still dong that, just from heaven now. As I lay here on my bed and reminisce about how much family I have been able to visit throughout my trip, I seriously have to appreciate all that I do have, rather than be bitter about no longer having my soulmate here on Earth with me.

You see, it’s so incredibly easy to focus on the loss of my mom. I would be lying if I said that I don’t focus on this a lot. However, I have the opportunity to focus on just how many genuine family members that I DO have here physically with me, all across the country! Here are some pictures of these loving individuals that I was able to share loving moments with:

I was able to visit my grandmom, Aunt Joyce, and Aunt Anita in Pittsburgh.

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I was able to visit my Aunt Paula, Uncle Frank, and Aunta in Texas.

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I was able to visit my “MomMom” and Gary in Florida.

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I was able to even visit my friend Alexis in California and Sarah’s grandparents and Niki’s best friend in Florida. I would’ve also been able to visit my Aunt Shellie, being my mom’s sister in Florida, but she was at Virginia Beach for my cousin’s baton competition, so I sadly missed them.

My point is this: how lucky am I to say that I have so many family members throughout the country that I get to call my own? I was even luckier that I was able to spend the morning of my mom’s birthday with MomMom and Gary in Gulfport, Florida, looking at the beautiful view of the bay, talking about how wonderful she was. We honored her by keeping her memory alive, recognizing that she had this beautiful gift of making everyone seem like they were the only person in the world. Always so giving.. never expecting anything in return. Always so happy, never complaining that her average day consisted of 16 hours of work and only four hours of sleep. Always a lover of life, it’s no wonder that her last word was, “No,’ right before I gave her permission to let go and make her way to heaven.

“Never let the things you want make you forget the things you have.” Such a simple concept, but such a difficult practice. If I always focused on not having my mom with me physically, I would forget of all the loving family members that I still do have on Earth with me. Countless Aunts that always tell me, “You’re like a daughter to me.” Aunts that have opened their heart, their life to me. Aunts that keep me so close to their heart because of how close their heart was to my mom’s.

We all have lost things that are irreplaceable in our lives. It’s heart wrenching to say the least. But, you can help your heart to feel a bit more full, vibrant, and alive, if you focus on what you do have. Loved ones that we have lost absolutely appear in loved ones who are still with us. You just have to LOOK at what is right in front of you, instead of WISH for something that is not. Like yoga, this is a lifelong process. But, it’s very do-able and quite life changing. So, whenever it is that you are reading this, go appreciate what you have that’s right in front of you. That could mean hugging a loved one, saying “I love you” to them, expressing the ways you appreciate them, and thanking them for being in your life. Open your eyes! You have so much in front of you. Once you appreciate it fully and whole heartily, you will suddenly have all that you need. I guarantee it 🙂

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