Journey of the Misfit

I’m doing something different in tonight’s post, that I have not done before. It fits well with the theme for this year…story…in that I am calling this post a prelude.

I have felt drawn in a particular direction for several days, and although I didn’t feel ready to write about it, the topic kept popping up, coming at me from a variety of directions and sources. When something appears in a repetitive way it is a signal to me to pay attention. I felt like I had written about this subject before, but apparently there is something more for me here, something deeper to explore.

I have always felt like a misfit…like someone who doesn’t quite fit in traditional roles. As a result, I’ve hidden aspects of myself for most of my life. I no longer mind being a misfit, being different, realizing my creativity and imaginative ideas flow from my unique perspectives. It has been a journey indeed to quit trying to fit in and celebrate my differences and the beautiful differences of everyone I meet.

From my love of the messages within the movie and songs of The Greatest Showman, to the quirky games that I create to play, to my desire to adapt things now to fit me rather than the other way around…I am reveling in the joys of being who I am.

Knowing I was not ready to write about all that is stirring in my heart, I considered several other possibilities for the blog this evening. But no. I was continually, gently, brought back to these ideas…which means it is important.

So instead, as I grapple still with my thoughts, here are the signposts from today’s journey, all pointing me down the same path. I’m going to post screenshots, without explanation, without connecting the dots. However, you can see how the same theme kept tapping on my shoulder, and on my heart today.

All of the above caught my attention during this day, raising my awareness and sparking deep thoughts and deeper questions. This is my prelude, my introduction to an upcoming post. I will share the story tomorrow, or the next day, or next week, whenever all that I am supposed to see and hear and feel and follow is revealed. I’m excited, and curious, to see where the path goes.

Growing into Who I Am

I’m loving these daily creative activities. I’ve called them arrows of desire, and that has turned out to be more accurate than I first imagined. As I draw a slip of paper each day, with the activity written upon it, I’m launching an arrow of desire. It has been amazing to follow the arrow then, to see what target it hits. 

This morning I randomly selected:

Plant seeds. 

This is the activity I thought I was going to draw yesterday. I don’t know why. As I reached into the glass pitcher, this creative task came to mind. Today, it became reality. And happily so. 

My garden is my happy place. I love puttering in my backyard paradise, engaging in activities that range from pulling weeds to planting herbs and flowers to layering on mulch. I like getting my hands dirty as I tuck plants into the ground. And my creativity shines here as I use unusual containers for plantings and repurpose family treasures into garden beauties. 

I harvested seeds last fall for the first time. I started seedlings earlier in the spring but I still had an abundance of seeds left over. This afternoon, as grey clouds piled up overhead, I started a second batch of seeds in my rectangular metal box. 

Lavender, white and purple coneflowers, clematis, black eyed Susan and fireworks flower seeds all got scattered in rows in the rich potting mix. I thought about how the potential for a gorgeous flower already exists in each tiny seed. Given the right environment, they will flourish. Ah, I thought, this is my deeper lesson today. This is the target my arrow of desire is leading me to. 

But no. That was not the target. As I finished labeling clothes pins and attached them to the side of the metal box, a stillness came over me. It’s as if time slowed way down. That’s the equivalent of a tap on my shoulder…a signal to pay attention. 

I wrote the name of each flower on a clothes pin, and attached it to the box to identify which plant is which as they begin to push through the soil. I realized I did that for my benefit and my own purposes. The tiny seeds contain the complete, beautiful flowers within them. They don’t need the labels. They just need a supportive environment and they will do the rest. Grow. Bloom. And be, exactly what they are meant to be. Without the help of labels. 

This deeper truth, around the simple and fun act of planting seeds, made tears come to my eyes. I don’t need labels to thrive either. Realtor, writer, woman, mom, intuitive…these labels help other people to identify who I am. As I continue to grow, who I am is evident. I am me. I am Cindy. Or Mithril, with the shining silvery heart. Really, I just am. 

And so is everyone else. They don’t need me to label them, or identify who they are. Their potential is complete within the seed of who they are. They are growing. Blooming. Being exactly who they are created to be. I can help, not by labeling who they will be, but by contributing to an environment that supports their glorious and beautiful growth. 

And you know what? My seeds don’t need labels either. Off the clothes pins came. I’ll watch the plants grow and as they develop I’ll know what they are. May this creative exercise serve as a reminder to me that labels are only necessary on items I buy. I don’t need them to be who I am. And neither does anyone else. Here’s to being label free. 

Journey 237: What Happens in Book Club, Stays in Book Club

This evening the wonderful book club that I participate in finished our latest book. We first met late last fall, the six of us, and during this journey together, meeting every three weeks or so, we’ve completed two books. 


As we read through Eckhart Tolle’s book, The Power of Now, we not only learned together but learned about each other. It was a trial time, of settling in to walk together, keeping pace with each other and building trust so that sharing could take place freely.  That happened beautifully. 

What I love about our book club is that we all have different backgrounds, different types of families, and even different first languages! We think our own thoughts, grew up with our unique sets of beliefs, have faced and walked through our own challenges.  We bring that rich variety of differing perspectives freely and openly to the group, and share, united in our desire to learn and grow and journey well. There is no judgment, no condemnation, no correction. Just curiosity and love and encouragement. 

We finished The Untethered Soul with interesting and thoughtful discussions around the last two chapters. This has been a life-changing book for me and it was a joy to read through it again, in the company of such an amazing group of women. I deeply appreciate each person’s input, questions, and honest stories of journeying through life, with the desire to free the heart and soul. How powerful it is to travel together. 

We selected our next book, The Mastery of Love, by Don Miguel Ruiz. I have read other books by this author but not this one. I look forward to reading it and to the continuing journey with these dear souls. 

I pulled a quote out of our upcoming book: “The quality of your communication depends on whether you tune your emotional body to love or to fear. If you know what love is and what fear is, you become aware of the way you communicate your dream to others, and you can choose to communicate with love.” I look forward to the next few months, as we communicate our dreams to each other. 


Journey 153: Far, Far Beyond

far far beyond

I spent a great deal of time in the car today, driving from one appointment to another, one town after another. That car time provided the perfect opportunity to listen on Audible to chapters 12 and 13 in The Untethered Soul, by Michael A. Singer, in preparation for book club tonight.

I actually listened to chapter 13 twice, rewinding the audio in certain spots over and over again. I reflected as I listened, searched inward, reached outward. Chapter 13, titled Far, Far Beyond, begins with these words “Ultimately, the word ‘beyond’ captures the true meaning of spirituality. In its most basic sense, going beyond means going past where you are. It means not staying in your current state. When you constantly go beyond yourself, there are no more limitations. There are no more boundaries. Limitations and boundaries only exist at the places where you stop going beyond. If you never stop, then you go beyond boundaries, beyond limitation, beyond the sense of a restricted self.”

Those words captivated me two years ago. I read chapter 13 many times, listened to it on audio many times. Something in my heart broke open and I longed to experience a life lived beyond my limitations, beyond my comfort zone. The word beyond began to show up repetitively, in conversations, on signs, at random, seemingly coincidental times. I knew, toward the end of 2013 that beyond was my word for the next year, and that moving beyond my comfort zone was going to be crucial in 2014. How to do that, I wasn’t sure. And then I read about Lu Ann Cahn and her year of new experiences and knew that the way was being shown to me.

Michael Singer describes how to know when we approach the edges of our comfort zone….we feel discomfort. His example explains that a dog contained within an invisible electrical fence learns how close he can get to that barrier before he feels the mild zap of electricity. He learns to back up enough so that he doesn’t feel the discomfort, thus remaining within the confines of his yard. In the same way, when I approach the edges of my comfort zone, I feel the sting of discomfort and back up just enough to remove the feeling. The dog won’t die from the experience, if he chooses to put up with the momentary discomfort and charge through the barrier. If he can do that, he knows freedom. I won’t die either from discomfort, if I will move through that momentary rush of fear, or the dread of embarrassment, or the risk of failure. And I too will know freedom.

My comfort zone keeps me contained as surely as the electrical fence does the dog. I can choose to spend my life within my comfort zone, or I can free myself. The day I decided to push against the barriers of my comfort zone was the day I began to grow, the new daily experiences leading me to opportunities and joy, and through fear and doubt. I realized the confinement I lived within was constructed by me, with the intention of keeping me safe.  I could walk out at any time, moving past the pang of discomfort. And move beyond, I did.

Today, listening to this chapter, I looked at how much I have grown since first stepping beyond. I can feel the openness within me, feel how my soul has expanded, appreciate the quiet within my mind.  I also saw where I have pushed through and yet now rest, paused in front of new barriers, feeling pretty comfortable again.  Amazing insights welled up, along with fresh perspectives on my journey, which is what this year is all about. It’s time to push beyond again. And again.

I am grateful for the book club, which provided an opportunity for reflection and renewed energy to keep growing, keep going, beyond the edges of my comfort zone, beyond the edges of my limitations. I am going….far, far beyond.