Awakening ~ Love, Sex And Poetry

Awakening ~ Love, Sex And Poetry
By: Linda A. Long

To awaken
Is to
See and feel
Things differently
It’s to
See things
You couldn’t
See before
It’s to
Feel things
You may
Have not felt
Before
It’s to know
You’ve changed
And nothing
In your life
Can remain
The same
The challenge is
To honor
Your awakening
As a call to action
In your life
It’s your Spirit
Pushing from
The inside
For you
To follow
The path
It is laying out
Trust
Your wisdom
Accept
You’ve changed
Relationships
Will suddenly
Be awkward
With your new awareness
Not everyone
In your life
Will accept
The new you
In fact
They will want
The old you back
But
If you are awakened
You know
You can’t
Continue
To be
Who you were
Strength
Can only be found
In the surrender
Your surrender
To the new truth
In your life
Take very good care
Of yourself
As you wake up
Slow down
And listen
To inner wisdom
Instead of
Relying upon
Outside approval
Or validation
Rely on your
Own internal teacher
To led your way
Do not trust
False Gurus
Do not follow the advice
Of your
Well meaning but
Unaware friends
They are not
In your shoes
Do not seek
Counsel
From the same
People
Who aimed to
Hold you back
Slow down
Turn off the noise
Temporarily give up
Numbing yourself
And feel
The shift
Inside of you
Feel the shift
Who does your
Internal wisdom
Call you
To be
To awaken
Is to wake up
To yourself
And finally see
Your truth
It’s not easy
But once you accept it
You can start
Living more
Authentically
Wake up
Awaken
(C) 2016 Linda A. Long – All Rights Reserved

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Life Is Best When Lived Passionately 


I Know The Way Out

A guy falls in a hole one day and the walls are so steep he can’t get out. So he’s down there when a doctor walks by and the guy says “Hey Doc, I am down in this hole, can you help me out?”. So the doctor writes a prescription and throws it down the hole.

A little while later a priest walks by and the man shouts “Hey father, I’m stuck in this hole, can you help me out?”. The priest writes the man a prayer and throws it down the hole.

Then a friend walks by and the man goes “Hey buddy can you help me out”. The friend jumps down in the hole with the man and the guy goes “Hey what are you an idiot, now we are both stuck down here”. The friend says, “Yeah, but I have been down here before and I know the way out.

I read this little story the other day; I bookmarked it because it was so thought provoking for me. I was going to write commentary of my thoughts around this. However, I decided to let the story speak for itself. Take a few moments and reflect about it a bit. I hope it speaks to you as beautifully it spoke to me.

(C) 2016 Linda A. Long – All Rights Reserved

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Life Is Best When Lived Passionately

How Are You? ~ The Story of A Warrior In Pearls 


I’m a walker. Although I live on the beach, I prefer to walk along the bay. I like walking bayside because I like the small town sense of community I feel as I walk through the neighborhoods along the water. I see many of the same people each time I walk. I know the local dogs; a few try to follow me home😂

Every weekend I see a well dressed older woman sitting on her steps drinking coffee and smoking cigarettes. We always say “Good Morning” but this morning I found myself intuitively following up with “How are you?” Well, 20 minutes later I walked away knowing our paths crossed for a reason. I’m still not sure if I needed her or she needed me. I do know for sure there was something spiritual about our conversation.

She started off by telling me she enjoyed seeing me in the morning because I smile and I’m friendly. I complimented her jacket which had blue roses on it which matched her beautiful crystal blue eyes. Blue Roses are my favorite flower by the way. This delicate little woman was even wearing pearls and earrings while sitting on her steps outside at 9:00am drinking coffee and smoking her cigarette on a Wednesday morning 😄

As we chatted I mentioned that I quit smoking five years ago. She replied, “I quit drinking 34 years ago!” And that’s when it happened. That’s when I knew she had a story. In that moment of complete awareness I stopped and listened to her with focused attention realizing a truly beautiful spirit sat in front of me. She was my blessing today.

Over the next 20 minutes or so she told me she was a bad alcoholic 35/40 years ago and she ruined her life and marriage. She moved to her current residence because the community had a large AA network. In the early years of her sobriety, she went to meetings four times a day. She knew if she didn’t go to the meetings, she would never stay sober. She told me it was the scariest decision she ever made but she also knew she had no choice. She told me how she struggled early on until she gained traction. She also told me she never took her sobriety for granted. She knew it was a choice she would have to make every day. She then explained she doesn’t need meetings anymore because she knows her sobriety is solid. Then she smiled, looked at me and said, “July 16th is my day and it was 34 years!”

I could feel myself welling up. She was so quietly inspiring. A true beautiful warrior spirit. At this point I shared with her, that I had some health issues a few years ago and stopped drinking five years ago; November 25th is my day👍 I was not an alcoholic. My reasons for stopping were because it was bad for me. It was causing my stomach problems and it made me depressed. It was holding me back. It had to go. My new friend completely understood what I was saying. Many friends even my family don’t understand me making that kind of choice. It was holding me back and it had to go. That’s it…She got it!

As I said, I’m not sure who needed who today. But I know with absolute certainty this beautiful little woman, with crystal blue eyes, pearls and a blue rose jacket who was sitting on her front steps drinking coffee and smoking cigarettes was put on my path for a reason.  If nothing else she reminded me to wear my pearls on Wednesdays and also reminded me of the beauty of the human spirit.

I hope we can chat some more in the future. Just think, it all happened because I took off my headphones and said, “How are you?”

(C) 2016 Linda A. Long – All Rights Reserved

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Life Is Best When Lived Passionately

Wickedly Yours – Love, Sex And Poetry

Wickedly Yours ~ Love, Sex and Poetry
By: Linda Long

Dominate me
I need you to
Possess me
Control me
It is only
Under your control
I will be set free
Strip away
Your inhibitions
You are free
To express your masculinity with me
I beg you
My delicious
Blue eyed Master to
Use my passion to
Ignite your fire
Push your boundaries
In the safety
Of my arms
I need you to
Blind me with
The desire for attention
Play this erotic game with me
Hide yourself between my legs
Seek my nipples
With your fingers
Take me
At your will
In your time
As you want
Let me loose myself
In your rapture
Seduce me
Tease me
Own me
I’m
Wickedly yours!
(C) 2015 Linda A. Long – All Rights Reserved


“Life is best when lived passionately”


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How’s Your Suffering?

  
My Meditation teacher walked into the room tonight and asked, “How’s everybody doing with their suffering this week?” 😄 The question was half joking but it also was very serious because we’ve been working on suffering as catalyst for growth and change.

We all suffer for different reasons. Some of my worst suffering has been self-inflicted. It was caused by my attachment to things, people and expectations. I’ve learned to let go of things. I travel much lighter these days. While I am much better now at letting go of people who do not align with me spiritually any longer, I do still feel guilty when I have to distance myself from someone. That causes me suffering even though I know it is for my best interest. And, admittedly, I still get hung up on expectations. It’s a constant struggle for me to stay mindful and see when I am “expecting” something or attaching myself to certain outcomes. Expectations always lead to suffering. That’s a big concept to accept but think it over for while. You will see it’s true. Our expectations of situations and people set us up for disappointment. Learning how to control my expectations is my challenge and my biggest opportunity for growth.

Over time I’ve learned the only way to transmute suffering is to first invite it to the table with you. Live with it. Sleep with it. Own it. I’ve also learned suffering is universal. Everyone suffers in one way or another. Some of us cause our own suffering. Some of us cause suffering for others. Some of us are attached to our suffering and wouldn’t know how to live without it. But, those who are conscious are capable of transmuting suffering into a powerful agent of change and growth in their lives.

Tonight I ask you ~ How are you suffering? What is in your life that is holding you back? What are you attached to? Do you have expectations that are causing you disappointment?

I also ask ~ Who would you be if it fell away? If you stripped everything away – if you lost it all – your job, car, house, clothes and reputation, who would you be?

Can you sit in with your suffering and feel it? Can you sit in the middle of all the crap that’s rising up inside of you and just be still with it without trying to move it, fix it or put a happy face on it? Can you accept it?

Lastly, are you willing to let it go, let it all go to find peace with in? Are you willing to surrender into your suffering and allow it to change you?

(C) 2015 Linda A. Long – All Rights Reserved

“Life is best when lived passionately”


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Growing Pains 

 
They don’t call them “Growing Pains” for no reason. Have you ever seen a Caterpillar break out of the cocoon and become a butterfly? The transformation process is a struggle! But then one day the Butterfly emerges and realizes it’s true potential. It’s simply magnificent.

This summer has been quiet strange and somewhat intense for me as compared to last year because I’ve been having “growing pains” this summer. Mostly these pains are self-inflicted as I’ve challenging myself in different aspects of my life to break old habits, smash the old paradigms of my thought processes, let go what no longer serves me and rise to be my highest best version of my myself. Yes, quite a change from last summer. Last summer allowed myself to stay still, rest and enjoy living on the beach. This summer, well, living on the beach is great but it’s time to focus on the other areas of my life that perhaps I’ve been ignoring or neglecting.

In July 2010 I had a major heart event that was related to my Congenital Arrhythmia. This “event” which was not a heart attack but an electrical problem in my heart was the first sign that something wasn’t right my body. But then I believed ignorance was bliss. I got out of the hospital and met my “friends” for happy hour the next night. But that was just the beginning of what only can be described as a storm that totally ripped apart my life. Over the next year and half I continued to have rhythm disturbances. I wore a heart monitor for three weeks to be sure It wasn’t time for a pace maker. I took two medications every day and rarely missed a happy hour.

Well, the combination of too much medication and too many happy hours destroyed my stomach and polluted my Liver causing Non Alcoholic Steatohepitiis. That’s when happy hour stopped being happy. I was sick more days than I was well but I was still working full time. I hid how sick I really was from everyone including family, friends, coworkers & bosses. I hid it because I hadn’t made my decision yet as to what I was going to do about the situation. I knew my life would have to change. I wasn’t sure I wanted it bad enough. I wasn’t sure life meant that much to me to fight that hard. I wasn’t ready to let go and I sure as hell wasn’t ready to lose everything I thought I needed. “I thought I needed.”

I called my Mother after I had a doctor’s appointment with a specialist at Temple University Hospital in Philly. It was time for me to come clean with her. It was serious and she needed to know. She was the first the person I admitted the truth to. She was the first person I told just how sick I really was. I’ll never forget her crying into the phone and saying, “Linda, just so you know, I’m not strong enough to watch another one of my children die. If you chose to continue living this way and die, you will be taking me with you because I just can’t do it again. I can’t!”

Her words sat on my chest like an elephant. I almost couldn’t breathe when I got off the phone. After crying for a few hours I made my decision and started the hardest job of my entire life. I started reclaiming my spirit but diving into meditation and yoga. I started reclaiming my health but quitting drinking, smoking and eating gluten. I reclaim my emotional well-being by disassociating myself from people who as it turned out were just drinking buddies and not real friends. I reclaimed my heart from an unhealthy relationship and man who treated me like crap.

That was the day I said, “What the fuck! How did I let things get this bad? How did I neglect myself this much? Why didn’t I see it before now?” Nothing like a Mother’s Guilt to open your eyes to the truth. My Mom is and always has been about “keeping it real.” But, now I can say my Mother not only gave me life but she also saved my life that day with her words. I am 100% healthy now. My Liver is 100% healthy. My arrhythmia is for the most part stabilized. It only acts up occasionally. But I only take a very low dose of one medication. I’m still a non smoker and I still don’t drink alcohol. While the Liver specialist said I could have a glass of wine, beer or champagne now and again, I don’t indulge because it can and has adversely affected my arrhythmia. The Premature Atrial Contractions & Tachycardia that I get are innocent for the most part but can really freak you out especially when you wake up out of a dead sleep feeling like your heart just stopped. It’s not worth it.

But, back to the reason I am writing this blog. I didn’t mean to retell my story. If you follow my blog, you probably read it before. I’m very proud of myself for having the balls and determination to reclaim my life and pull myself back from the edge. But, I’m still struggling some areas of my transition. As a natural introvert, alcohol used to grease the wheels for me and help me interact socially without constant anxiety. Going to happy hour was a social outlet and after my first drink I was actually quite extroverted, popular, fun, animated & chatty. But this new authentic Linda is more reserved and quiet. It’s hard for to enter new social environments especially alone.

Some friends from my former life invite me happy hour with them and say, “Oh, come on. You can come out. Just drink a soda!” That cracks me up because I tried it. I order a soda and I am ready to leave after about an hour. They knock back two Martinis or glasses of wine and nurse the last one begging me to stay until they finish. Meanwhile, it’s hard for me to understand their version of English and I get a headache from the noise. It’s not fun. I LOVE going out to Dinner! I enjoy going out to Dinner! Can’t we please eat a meal together while you drink? Then I can enjoy dessert and coffee while you nurse your after dinner drink. We will both be happy😄👍 But, it doesn’t seem to roll that way. I would go out dinner ever Friday night I could find someone who didn’t need to go to happy hour. Thankfully, I do have a few true friends who make an effort for me and will have dinner or go out for coffee with me.

As I’ve stepped away from the bar social scene and my old crowd, I’ve been exploring other interests. But honestly, a lot of these activities require me to go into new groups, new environments by myself for the first time. That is very hard for me with nothing to grease the wheels for me. Last night I went to a new Drum Circle on the beach a 1/2 mile from my house. I went alone. I didn’t know anyone. But, I pushed through my anxiety and did it. I enjoyed it. The facilitator also owns a Yoga studio which is perfect. I will go back. It’s was a first step in finding a new social outlet and new tribe of like minded people.

I was telling my story about last night to my friend, Brian, earlier this afternoon. He and his wife own Herban Legend in Smithville, NJ. I bought my Djembe Drum from him last year. After I told him the story, he got a big smile on his face and proclaimed, “I am proud of you and you should be proud of yourself!” He made me laugh. I felt like I was five and my Dad just told me he was proud of me. I then told him next I was going to go to an Open Mic Night on a Saturday night at the local Coffee Shop and read some of my poetry. He laughed and told me I was starting to talk crazy and winked at me.

This brings me back to my first sentence. They don’t call them “growing pains” for no reason. But if you want to grow, you have to leave the comfort zone and be extraordinarily horribly uncomfortable time to time. There is no way easy way around it.

Well, now I will be working up my nerve to read my poetry out loud at the Open Mic Night some Saturday Night. I will tell you this… It won’t be tonight😁 I grew enough last night. It’s time to chill out and just “be” for a while😁👍

Are you experiencing “growing pains”? Are you pushing yourself to expand and be open? Tell me your stories! Motivate me! Inspire me! Challenge me! But, most importantly, grow with me!

(C) 2015 Linda A. Long – All Rights Reserved

“Life is best when lived passionately”

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Art by; Jonas Kunickas

The song “Daughters” by John Mayer has always been especially moving to me. The truth is my Dad dying when I was seven was very traumatic for me and honestly fucked me up a bit in relationships. But, thankfulky, I have a strong Mother who not only gave me life but saved my life too. I’m the best Linda I’ve ever been. I’m finally ready to share myself and my life. I’ve finally grown enough that I am ready to let someone in.

GROWTH!

Deserving ~ I Am Deserving

  
“When I was little, I picked up a flower and put it in a vase. After a few days, it died. I asked my mom why and she said: “You can’t force a flower to thrive somewhere it doesn’t belong to. And now I have realized that people are like that too.” ॐ – Author Unknown – Retrieved from Sageword Facebook Page
————–
In an effort to turn the course of my thoughts and release the heaviness of emotions I’ve been struggling with recently, I’m writing another therapeutic post to make some space for creativity again.

I’ve been feeling like I’ve been pushed to a fork in the road. I feel like life is calling me to make choices that will determine my future. I wasn’t really planning to do this now. I was hoping to be like everyone else I know and just coast along in life. I was hoping for once what I have would be all I would need. But, life doesn’t work for me that way. Maybe it doesn’t work that way for anyone? Maybe I’m just more open about it and more willing to change and grow.

Part of what brought me to this place is a feeling growing inside of me. A feeling growing inside of me that is saying I deserve more. I deserve more. I deserve to work to the full capacity of my intellect, talent and skills. I deserve to have satisfaction in my daily activities. I deserve to be in a relationship with a man who is capable of giving me all of him. I deserve to have a healthy body. I deserve to have peace in my life, my body and my mind. I deserve more.

You’ll notice that nowhere in that last paragraph did I speak about being rewarded for my efforts. That is because I don’t think that way. I truly give and help people because I enjoy it. I have no ulterior motives.

In recent weeks I’ve been helping someone at work during a transition time. I offered to do it because I knew he needed the help, he’s very appreciative for the help and I enjoyed doing it. I wanted him to see the level of support and service he should be getting. I wanted him to know he deserved more than he was accepting. That is why I helped him. I wanted to show him by example what he deserved. I don’t seek rewards for those efforts. That’s not what I’m about. I don’t expect anything in return from him other than “thank you Linda” which he has said numerous times👍😄

But, in helping him see he deserved more, I saw I deserved more. We are like mirrors to each other. We show each other what we need to see, what’s holding us back, who we can be and what the possibilities are for ourselves. Through him I’m opening myself up to wanting more. I’m diving further down into myself and using our connection to source profound growth and personal evolution. Some connections are deeply spiritual and have the capacity to spark movement in stagnation.

At this time of reflection in my life, I’m also practicing great caution. I’m looking before I leap. I’m considering alternatives. I’m taking my time. There’s no rush. Things may work out for me organically without a lot of effort from me. But, I must be willing now open my eyes to what else is available to me.

A friend gave me some advice the other day. She said, “Linda, I’m going to tell you what I tell my kids. Open your eyes and look. You’ll either find you like what you have and choose to stay where you are or you will find something that’s better for you, something you like better. Look. You’ll know if it’s time to leap. Trust your intuition.” I suppose that’s what I’m doing. I’m looking.

I am looking for more because I now know I deserve more. How do you know you deserve more? It’s when you can no longer accept less…

(C) 2015 Linda A. Long – All Rights Reserved
Life is best when lived passionately
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NOTE
The Music is “Driving” By Will Ackerman
This is absolutely favorite piece of music. I close my eyes and tears well up from from the emotions in the chords. The year after my Sister died I was in a pretty deep depression. The truth is I had an emotional/physical/spiritual breakdown. I didn’t know how to live without her. In some ways, I still don’t. In that challenging part of my life, I relied on music to help me get through the long nights. I found this song on the “Conversations With God” CD. I wore the CD out twice. This song especially brings me great peace. It’s almost like it was telling me it was ok to be sad and cry. And, it’s reassuring me that I am being guided and protected by Angels.

Photo Credit:
Sageword Facebook Page