Wednesday, November 21, 2012

CREATE Love...Thanksgiving Edition

A Kenyan proverb says that a “woman counts what she is refused, not what she is given”.  I must admit that the proverb stopped me in my tracks because I have been guilty of counting, reliving and focusing on the times that I have not received my heart’s desires. I have wasted time concentrating and on some occasions, perseverating, about the times when my needs were not met. I have been sidetracked and at times, totally derailed with thoughts and regrets about relationships when I allowed disrespect and abuse. And, at times, I have been distracted by holding on to anger and hostility when I felt my love was taken for granted or trivialized. The truth is that I had spent so much time enumerating the bad, that I had overlooked the blessings that I received and the many blessings that I still have. I know that I am not the only one guilty of taking blessings for granted, so I thought that I would take this Thanksgiving Holiday to remind all of us about our blessings, so that we are able to bless each other and CREATE Love.

So what am I thankful for? I am thankful for:

·     Good Health – I am thankful for my health. I have to admit that in my twenties and thirties I took my health for granted. But after years of hospitalizations and many surgeries, I am now more than ever grateful for my health. I may not have the same degree of health as others, but every time I walk down the halls of hospitals, I am reminded that I am thankful to be a visitor and not a patient. I am reminded that I am ambulatory, breathing on my own, totally conscious and as the old folks used to say “clothed in my right mind”. I now appreciate my health, and I have CREATED love by loving my body enough to take care of it. I eat better, I rest well, I exercise and I talk about my troubles. I don’t let negativity, toxicity and anxiety take root in spirit. What about you? Are you loving your body enough by giving it good food, good rest and good thoughts so that it can perform at an optimal level? Are you making wise choices to ensure that your heath decisions today will reap big dividends in the future? Affirmation: I have good health and I am grateful.

·     Family – I am thankful for my wonderful son and my family. Most of my people that I consider my family are not biologically related to me, but yet we are spiritually connected in a way that is life-giving, life-sustaining and life-affirming. These are people who chose me and/or people I chose to navigate through this journey called life. They love me, they support me, they challenge me, they encourage me, and sometimes, they even confront me. They require that I be/do my best, they demand that I am authentic, they push me beyond my fears, they celebrate all of my achievements, they cover my weakness, and they affirm my strengths. My family and friends have CREATED love by loving me and by allowing me to love them. They honor me, and they cherish me and it feels so good. How about you? Do you have great people in your life who are sources of inspiration, motivation and great discovery? Do you have friends and family who are hopeful, helpful and healing? I hope you do because you deserve it. Affirmation: I have great friends and family and I am grateful.

·     Open Heart and Open Mind– I am thankful that I have an open heart and open mind. This is a new development for me. I had experienced so much trauma and drama in my life that I was bitter, cynical and guarded. I was afraid to open my heart and my mind to new people and to new ways of navigating in the world. Pain had left me reclusive, suspicious, disappointed and lonely. But I am realizing that with an open heart and open mind, I am attracting new and interesting people in my life. I am exposing myself to new perspectives, new experiences and diverse ideologies. I am learning and I am having fun! Most of all, I have learned that an open heart and an open mind usually results in an open hand. An open hand that is willing to hold on to yours in times of adversity and hardship. Is your heart and mind open to others? Is your mind and heart open to new possibilities, new concepts and new opportunities? You are a person of an unlimited promise and potential! You have the capacity and ability to be more successful that you can ever imagine. You have what it takes to CREATE love and I salute you. Affirmation:  I have an open heart and open mind, and I am grateful.

·     Tenacity – I am thankful for tenacity. When I look at my life and when you look at your life, I am sure you see signs of your persistence and resolve. When you look at your ability to withstand poverty, racism, sexism, homophobia and marginalization, you must be reminded of your determination. When you see your certificates and diplomas adorning the walls, you must be reminded of your strength to excel and achieve despite the odds and adverse circumstances. When you see pictures of your family, yourself and your partner, I hope you are reminded of your resilience to love yourself and to love others even in the face of societal and familial rejection. You are tenacious! You have CREATED love by loving yourself enough to not give up and to not give in to other people’s opinions about love and family. Affirmation: I am tenacious, and I am grateful.

      Forgiveness – I am thankful that I am able to forgive, and I am most grateful that I can forgive myself. I have made some wrong turns, dated some incompatible people, made some wrong investments, made some negative parental decisions, and took some bad advice. Sometimes I did not prepare well, do my research, honor my commitments or trust my intuition. Sometimes, I allowed fear to derail me and allowed procrastination to delay me. At times I simply did not do my best. But I realized that my ability to forgive myself is directly connected to my ability to forgive others. So I made a decision to show myself mercy and compassion when I don’t live up to my own expectations. I have learned to cut myself some slack. I don’t let myself off the hook for poor performance or for not honoring my commitments, but I hold myself responsible and accountable with kindness. My ability to show myself kindness, mercy and compassion helps me extend all three to others. I have CREATED love by appreciating that I am worthy of forgiveness, and I will continue to CREATE love by demonstrating that others are worthy of forgiveness too. Have you forgiven yourself? Have you forgiven others who did not know how to respect you, love you, honor you or love themselves? Affirmation:  I can forgive myself and others, and I am grateful.

·    Clarity – I am thankful for clarity. I am happy that I know my God-given purpose. I am excited that when I review my life, I see how every experience, both bad and good, was preparing me to do what I am doing now. I see how and why God allowed me to have certain experiences, successes and failures. I see! And even I don’t full see or my insecurity obscures my vision, I still see God’s direction and provision in my life. My clarity is CREATing love because I have less fear, and consequently, more faith. Do you see you? Do you see your vision, your purpose, your calling and your passion? Clarity is empowering, illuminating and liberating so settle your spirit and get clear. Affirmation: I am emotionally, spiritually and mentally clear, and I am grateful.

·     YOU – I am thankful for you, our readers. I am grateful that despite your busy schedules and jam-packed lives that you find time to read the CREATE LOVE for Women Blog. I am grateful that couples so lovingly open their lives so that we all can learn tips and techniques to become better partners, lovers and friends. I am thankful that you give Imani Evans and me feedback so that we can improve and provide the information that you need to support you and your life. I am grateful to Anita Haugabrook and Wendy Smith for taking a risk and being our first feature couple. Without you, the readers, and your support, there would be no blog. We recognize that YOU are the lifeline of CREATE Love For Women, and we are so grateful and humbled that you allow us to be part of your life. YOU have blessed us, and I am grateful. Please continue to let us know how we can bless you.  Affirmation: I am a blessing to others and I am grateful.

·     GOD – I can hear God, and I am thankful. Hearing God is not easy to do, and I must admit that I always don’t do it well. But I have learned to hear God’s voice over my own. I have finally learned the difference between mindless chatter and God’s communication. I don’t always hear what I want to hear and I don’t always do what I am told to do, but I can discern who is speaking. Believe me, that’s half the battle. I know that when I hear and follow God’s voice that I CREATE love because God is love. My prayer is that I continue to hear, and more importantly, that I start being more obedient. Can you hear your Higher Power’s voice? Do you know when the Spirits, Creator or God is speaking? It is not easy for me and I guess at times, it is not easy for you. But I know that we can all grow and I am thankful. Affirmation: I can hear God’s voice, and I am grateful.

CREATing Love does not only require you to be in a relationship with others, it requires you to be in a loving relationship with yourself. CREATing Love demands that you take stock of your blessings. CREATing Love demands self-refection. CREATing Love insists on forgiveness of yourself and others. CREATing love compels you to take risk. CREATing Love expects change and growth. CREATing Love involves loving yourself and others. CREATING Love requires a Higher Power. CREATing Love requires YOU.

A “woman counts what she is refused, not what she is given”. Be sure to count what you have been given because we both have been given much. And my faith tradition reminds me that “where much is given, much is required”. You may have a different faith tradition but I pray that the meaning still resonates with you and your spirit.

Imani Evans and I say THANK YOU for being part of CREATE LOVE. We appreciate you so much. Keep reading, keep sharing and keep talking to us. We are listening. We hope to see you at the CREATE LOVE Conference in February too. Early Registration ends in a few weeks so don’t forget to sign up. We hope and affirm that we will see you there!

From CREATE LOVE to YOU - Have a wonderful Thanksgiving Holiday and thank you again for your support.

SharRon Jamison

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