The Lady in the Park…Your Choices
In my last Blog, I talked about my choices and how important understanding your world is. This
past week I had an experience with a young lady sitting on a park bench that I wanted to share
to demonstrate further the power of choice and the miracles behind then.
The day had started like every other before it. Beautiful sunshine morning, hot mug of coffee, a
morning walk with my dog, Lotus, and a light breeze carrying the smell of salty sea air. Life
seemed to be all around uneventful. We were on our long walk for the day, which snakes us
through two or three local parks around our home. This Thursday morning, we happened
across a beautiful young lady who seemed to be sitting there with a rain cloud hovering over
her. I instantly felt compassion for her because, let’s face it, we have all been in our darkest
night a few times and can pick out those in a crowd in the middle of their own. Usual social
formalities standing, we started to walk by her and tipped up my coffee mug and said, “Good
Morning!”, To which her response was the same and then curiously with a question, “Do you
buy Avon products?”.
At that point, I knew a well-timed conversation was going to happen. Lotus and I walked over to
the bench and took a seat. It turned out that this beautiful young lady named Amber was in her
early twenties, and because she had believed in love outside of herself more than inside of
herself, she had made some decisions in life that left her in a tight spot. Amber has two children
under five years old and was living in a temporary home for mothers with nowhere to go. The
father was not part of the picture (and honestly, it sounds like it was for the better), and she
had a limited timeline for moving out and on her own. Amber was sitting there trying to work
out the short-term and long-term courses of action to move forward. She considered attending
massage therapy school and getting a job to support her family while working towards her long-
term goal. All of this sounds like a similar conversation I once had when deciding what to do
next in my life. So, what better moment to share my findings with someone just getting ready
to walk it? We started talking about the best way to go about schooling, work, the obligation of
being a new mom of two little ones, and the details that would accompany these decisions.
Undeniably, this wasn’t the life Amber thought she would be living. However, she was proud to
tell me how she had been raised a Christian girl, attended church regularly, celebrated in
school, was a dedicated daughter, and was completely confused about how she got here.
Understanding that the Darkness Brings Forth the Light.
This is a story I often hear and understand well, as I have made similar mistakes on my own. It
has taken me 37 years, countless books, courses, friends, and seminars to help me understand
how all of our choices shape our reality. Yet, as Amber and I continued to talk, I could see
where the outline of her belief structures was causing her to run into problems in the world
Right from the get-go, I was impressed with her tenacity in putting a plan together and driving
forward, but she was missing the part that stumped most of us.
Many of us raised in a religious format have been taught many ways of love in this world and
what actions to express to elicit that response back from others. However, most of us don’t
realize that we are always looking for these interactions to make us feel love, appreciation, and
love with a specific intent. At the beginning of this lesson, Amber was having a hard time
wrapping her mind around not being loved the way she loved and looking for every answer as
to what she did wrong to make her life come to this point. What she believed was being offered
by the children’s father and what the truth of the situation was, in reality, so far from what her
upbringing had taught her that she was looking for something or someone to point the finger at
and blame. Amber did not consider that everything her decisions had created was to learn a
lesson about loving herself. She told me how she has been praying and praying, asking for
guidance out of this hole, and wouldn’t even consider the auspicious moment was currently
I looked at her and asked, “What makes you think that God didn’t sit me down with you right
now to talk this all out? REALLY?
I have been where you want to be; I’m five years past that point. I have done everything you’re
talking about, failed, and started over again. So, don’t you think this is your prayers being
answered?” She was downright dumbfounded; in that instant, the light began to run through
her mind, and we were getting to her miracle. It had never dawned on Amber that these
challenges were created in life to help her walk a completely different path than what she was
dreaming. As a child, Amber had wanderlust in her heart, college on her mind, and a white
picket fence as a daydream. She was so heartbroken by the death of her fantasy that she
couldn’t get out of her way.
Amber believed herself the worst of people in this world, and now to pay the punishment that
would last a lifetime.
Once the Miracle Occurs, what do you do next?
What is it that makes us think that these things have to last a lifetime? In what book and
practice did making mistakes take us away from learning and growing to become whom we
were meant to be all along? It was the correct time to start poking holes of light in Amber’s
cloud. How could it be said that this was a lifetime punishment when the blessing of two
beautiful, healthy, happy babies had happened? And so, what if she didn’t have the picket
fence here and now, but wouldn’t it be built later? Amber was starting to realize that her gift of
choice had created two beautiful blessings!
Again, the light ran through her mind, and the miracle had begun to replace the dark looming
cloud. At this point, she broke into tears, confessing that the last six months since the new baby
was born had been spent wallowing and struggling, believing that this revelation of truth was a
Assuming she would never have what she wanted in life but had to push to survive and make
things happen continually.
After she started to collect herself and let go of the constant punishment she was inflicting
upon herself, Amber took notes about the path and career she would start walking.
We discussed the best places to live and other jobs she might want to consider while going to
Before we departed, I thought of a quote from Rumi that I shared with her, “Your task is not to
seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built
against it.” During our conversation, Amber started to understand and be able to communicate
back that she was creating the mess all on her own. The love she had been looking to fulfill her
dreams with wasn’t coming from within her own heart but from the outside world, and she was
thankful for my help illuminating the path. Amber has decided to face everything with grace,
more understanding of being grounded in her goals, and listen for Universe to guide her when
her plans don’t seem to work out. So, for all of you reading this, how many of you look for love
and fulfillment in the world outside your heart? And when was the last time you silently loved
Spending silent time in reflection and feeling your emotions through your body is one of the
most significant ways to return to yourself. Allow the spinning world around you to stop so the
truth can emerge. The challenge for us all is to understand that every day, stop, sit, set a timer
(20 mins being the ideal amount of time for this exercise), close your eyes, and breathe. Allow
thoughts to come and then let them go as if they were a radio playing in the background. Let
your feelings do the same; feel them and make them become part of the background.
Let your focus be the breath as it comes through your nose, past your throat, into your lungs,
and then out again. For all of the things you think and feel, I will tell you they are not going
anywhere! This time is only 20 minutes for 24 hours a day; they will be there when your alarm
goes off, waiting for you to attend to them. The practice will allow you to slowly gain
perspective during intense moments, letting the light of truth shine.
There are also some lovely meditations on YouTube that you can follow and mix with this
practice. So explore and have fun learning!
For a great short read about loving yourself, the choices you are given as you walk through life,
and understanding the kind of life you want, please read The Alchemist by: Paulo Coelho.