100 Days -- At Home in the Body

Saturday, April 17, 2010

At Home in the Body

We cannot be grateful unless we are grounded in the present moment, and we cannot be grounded in the present moment unless we are grounded in the body. Much of the time we live like disembodied minds, not even noticing what's around us, but preoccupied with past and future. But when this mug of tea warms first our hands and then our stomach on a cold day, or the cat purrs contentedly in our lap, we are suddenly present and grateful.

We can learn to cultivate the joy of this awareness, but it may not always be easy. Illness, poverty, old age, or abuse can make it a great challenge for us to accept embodiment. And yet, bringing ourselves back into the body again and again is central to the practice of grateful living. When we do so, we allow healing power to flow through us, and we appreciate our aliveness as the great gift it is.


I can think of nothing more fitting today than to post a Gratefulness Blog! I have tried so many times to accomplish a few small goals, to work on my health, to reduce my stress, to find joy... My attempts would last a few days, sometimes weeks and then I would fall back into old patterns and become stressed and overwhelmed again.

But, YOU! YOU all, have changed that for me. For 100 days now I have logged onto SparkPeople each day, taken my spin at the wheel, posted my sincere and heartfelt gratitudes and reported faithfully my small, but essential goal accomplishments. This may not seem like much, but as a 51 year old, new faculty member, trying to achieve tenure, I can tell you the journey is at times almost unbearable. I think often that I should have tried this in my 30s not my 50s. But, of course, that was not my journey or I would not be here now.

On those days when I was so overwhelmed, with illness, fatigue, feeling insufficient, or even incompetent, I would come here and receive my daily dose of love and SparkBlessings! It encouraged me and kept me going. The tiniest acts of "likes" on my activity feed, the SparkGoodies, the comments on my SparkPage, the private SparkMail I received -- all of it has been a tremendous encouragement and support.

My life is very different from 100 days ago. Well, yes, there is the fact that I have lost nearly 20 pounds and several inches and have more energy, but that is not the change of which I speak! The change is ME! Loving being here (wherever I am is here!). My job continues to be incredibly demanding, but I have a new approach to it. AND, more importantly I have found places to get positive, life affirming support -- this place is one of the most meaningful, but of course I have also now cultivated others as well! I am deepening my meditation and spiritual practices and perhaps, most important to me, I have become kinder, more compassionate. It is amazing, how when you stop feeling sorry for yourself, your situation, your obligations, and the demands put upon you, and begin to focus on your blessings, how the people around you become more human. My friends' needs and suffering have become more real and important to me. I am grateful to be able to support others in their journey. I am joyful to support others in their grief and suffering AND in their celebrations!

So, I don't think I have all the answers, nor am I finished with this journey. I know many obstacles lie ahead and the road will bring me more unexpected twists and curves and perhaps even a dead end or two. But, I am confident that I have cultivated the awareness and presence to be grateful for the blessings and to include the challenges as blessings to help me grow and learn, and more forward. Some days I say, "all right, enough lessons and growing for today." But, still I continue on without being frozen in my own self-pity or self-doubt.

Today, in this moment, I give thanks for all of you! This 100 Days and the changes I have made would not have been meaningful or joyful -- or even possible, without your presence! I bow deeply in gratitude, hands together, in honor and awe of your grace and generosity, AND of this Sacred Community!

Shalom and blessings to all!


Share This Post With Others
Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Just the blog I needed to read today. Thank you!
    2715 days ago
    This is fabulous. Thank you. 100 days of commitment, through all the trials and tribulations of your life. Awesome. Simply awesome.

    Blessings, emoticon
    2731 days ago
    What a lovely, inspiring blog. Thank you!
    2731 days ago
    I am catching up here and I know I'm a bit late, but still a huge emoticon emoticon emoticon on your 100 day streak. Thank you for all you have shared along the way, and congratulations on all you have learned about yourself. I look forward to sharing your continuing journey with you.


    2833 days ago
    This was so uplifting to read!
    I love following you on your journey and sharing the Spark joy with you.
    Your positive attitude and your uplifting words stay with me more days than you know.

    Thank you!

    2834 days ago
    Your blog is very inspiring and motivates me to do meditation. Thank you for sharing.

    2834 days ago
    Congratulations on 100 days and on reaching it with such spirit and verve. I am celebrating with you. Your blog highlights for me the wonderful support of this community, together with the practices of meditation, compassion, and giving gratitude. May you continue to celebrate the path as you continue the journey.
    2834 days ago
    Your beautiful blog is a moving testament to your own progress and to the power that comes from the solidarity of people connecting with each other across the ether and exploring possibilities together. Your blog highlights that this experience is about so much more than losing pounds.

    Congratulations on your all your achievements, changes and, of course, your weight loss and thanks so much for enriching our lives. I hope that 100 days is just the beginning and wish you the continued joy that you so richly deserve

    2834 days ago
    My dear friend,

    I read your astounding acknowledgement of success early this morning...and then had computer problems. As I come back and read dear friend Sandra's response, it sounds SO MUCH like what I was feeling in my heart to say to you that I simply underscore her wise sharing.

    As I read your words earlier my eyes welled up with tears at the deep joy that I felt for your achievement.

    In solidarity and love,
    2835 days ago
    This is beautiful, Gina. To be able to transform yourself in a time of anxiety is a mark of your own character and strength as well.

    Many thanks and many blessings to you. I hope to be where you are when I reach my 100 days!
    2835 days ago
    You are such a blessing to have among my Spark friends. We each have our own path, but sometimes they run parallel, and contentment with walking our own path becomes easier knowing others are seeking the same.

    2835 days ago
    Oh Gina,
    Your post makes my heart fill with joy with you and for you. What a profound shift. And to be able to proclaim it with confidence ... what a gift. I bow in gratitude to you for demonstrating a path and sharing your journey.

    With love and gratitude,
    2835 days ago
  • Add Your Comment to the Blog Post

    Log in to post a comment

    Disclaimer: Weight loss results will vary from person to person. No individual result should be seen as a typical result of following the SparkPeople program.