“You are not IN the universe; you ARE the universe, an intrinsic part of it. Ultimately, you are not a person, but a focal point where the universe is becoming conscious of itself. What an amazing miracle.” – Eckhart Tolle
This blog has been a long time coming. For years, the universe has invited me to share my stories – to use my words as I support others, often college students navigating their own journeys. Stories of my own journey, a journey filled with hope, joy, resiliency, and strength amidst uncertainty, angst, and sometimes heartache offer a safe space as I share cups of coffee, meals, or a walk with students. More recently, I have spun my stories via Zoom or FaceTime calls.
Through stories of my parents’ divorce, of my pre-adolescent immersion into “parenting” my siblings, of finding my voice through teaching, of taking my health into my own hands, of ending a thirty-year marriage, and of my daughter’s battle with stage four brain cancer, I create a safe space in which others can connect. As I expose myself in vulnerable ways, I offer an opportunity for us both to realize how similar storylines are.
The same is true for all of us brave enough to share even a small piece of ourselves. Through stories, we find hope in others – others who seem to have emerged bruised, but not scarred – others who find joy in life regardless of the obstacles – others who help us realize we are not alone.
On days when life feels a little heavy, the universe sends me reminders that I am loved – that through the life I have shared with others, I have deep, deep connections. The universe reminds me of how gently she is holding me: a friend waiting on my porch when I return from a walk, a group of friends from across the country gathering on Zoom just to conenct, a friend who sends me daily quotes like the one anchoring this blog (every single day since Elizabeth’s diagnosis with stage four cancer), and another friend who sends a text, “You good?”
The universe reminds me in remarkable ways that it IS conscious of me… of you. Our stories matter. What a gift!!! #MakeRoomForJoy