Blessing, Discovering Strength, Inspiration, Spirituality

Keep Yourself Moving through Life

What keeps you moving in the world? What gives you the ability to overcome obstacles? What gives you the energy to be creative or inventive? What inspires you to go forward with the beginning of a new day?

There are so many question that can relate to this statement, “Keep Moving.” What question or questions do you have within you, that give you courage, strength, purpose, imagination, hope, etc. to explore another day of your life?

I’ve been tired, maybe a little weary from the long winter days, and my spirit seems to have ups and downs more frequently than during the warm spring and summer months. And life has taken me down a few unexpected paths, that I have been forced to accept with grace or be defeated by frustration. So I’ve chosen to be accepting, because frustration depletes my spirit.

And since I’ve chosen to be accepting of my unexpected paths, I have been reflecting on what has given me the courage to move forward. Do you ever reflect on your strengths as you move through life? Do you offer yourself credit, and celebration when you have overcome day by day, that which you thought you could never live through?

If you haven’t you should, and if you already are, Good for you!

Celebrating and recognizing your strengths as you move through obstacles in your life, gives you courage to keep going, and develops a deeper wisdom within you so that you keep learning. These gifts of courage and wisdom allow you to move through other challenges you may face along your path, so that you can always keep going, even when life seems like it wants to make things difficult.

For me courage has come from my faith. One day while I was going through my most recent challenge I decided that I was going to get out of my head, and lead my body, mind and spirit with my faith. And by letting go, and not trying to be in charge of everything…which I certainly know I’m not in complete control because if I was I would NOT have to face these challenges!…I began to feel at ease. (Why I wrote about feeling comfort last week). There is something completely humbling about “Letting Go” and as I like to say “Letting God.” My wisdom comes when I remember all the times when I have allowed myself to ask for help from God, the Universe, Spirit, etc., and let go of being in control, I actually begin to heal, to be at peace, to feel comforted, to feel an inner strength, and to trust again in this beautiful life that I have been given the gift of experiencing.

So the answer for me to all the above questions is it is my relationship with the Divine; it is my faith that keeps me moving forward always. It is a special relationship for me that is never forced, but waits for me each time with open arms to accept me where I am, and with whatever I have to bring to the table.

What about you? How do you answer the question of what keeps you moving through life even when life places challenges or obstacles in your life?

Blessing by Bella Bleue

Blessings, Erin, Bella Bleue

©Bella Bleue Healing™ All Rights Reserved.
Please also visit my photography site: Photography by Bella Bleue.

See my Facebook page for daily inspirations and messages.

Blessing, Discovering Strength, Healing

Comfort Me

Prayer for Comfort by Bella Bleue

COMFORT

in the midst of your struggles
appears, when you call out of the depths
of your heart, asking for peace
like a soft quiet snow falling softly upon your face
it is so very gentle, yet powerfully transforms
your inner being into a sanctuary
where you feel safe, whole and loved
and fear, anxiety, anger and sorrow have disappeared
and been replaced by Faith.

Although last week left me feeling full of uncertainty, I have come to a place within myself that I call Comfort. I still do not have my answers, but I have prayed, and asked. I have searched, and been loved. And now deep within I know it is my Faith, that has given me the courage to keep moving forward. It is my Faith that has allowed, me to feel comfort, a wholeness, where once only anxiety and fear lived.

May you also be blessed with Comfort in all those places in your life, where you need to feel whole and at peace again.

Blessings, Erin, Bella Bleue

©Bella Bleue Healing™ All Rights Reserved.
Please also visit my photography site: Photography by Bella Bleue.

See my Facebook page for daily inspirations and messages.

Discovering Strength, Healing, Inspiration, Spirituality

Attempting Certainty in Your Uncertainty

So you don’t know where life is taking you? Maybe you thought you were on one path and suddenly there is a detour, and you are forced onto a road you would never have chosen on your own. And as you are going down this path you keep looking for road marks that you recognize, and sometimes you find one, but when you get up close you realize it is not the marker you know. In other words, life is filling you up with uncertainty, and you are doing all you can to regain the certainty in your life.

Lately, I have been having uncertainty on a daily basis, and I don’t like the way it feels. I’ve been trying to just ignore it, which doesn’t work out so well. I don’t know how you are with uncertainty, but even if I’ve convinced myself that everything will be okay, my body does a 180 on me and messes with my system. And this underlying physical discomfort continues to remind me that I don’t really know what is going on, even though my mind is saying, “JUST LET IT BE.”

So I’ve been working at calming myself daily, to regain my center, to just feel like me again. And daily I seem to be discovering something that does allow my mind, body and spirit to regain some balance, even if I fall off track again.

For the first few days, I did my research. I educated myself. Sometimes this puts my mind at ease, other times it just creates more worry. But I like making sense of things so it mainly helps.

I looked for stories about other people who went through what I am going through to both normalize my situation, but to also find comfort in knowing that I’m not the only one who has the questions I do. There is something very comforting in knowing I am not alone in my journey.

I have reached out to those who I love, and who love me, and just asked them to listen. And to pray for me. I find that there is great power in communal prayer or intentions of healing towards those we hold in our hearts. So I always ask for prayers when I need them.

I have opened myself more to the Spirit, and offered prayers for myself, asking to have my mind and body calmed; for acceptance no matter what the outcome is; and for blessing upon me.

I have begun to pause throughout my day and be thankful for what I already have in my life, and to celebrate these gifts more intentionally throughout my day. Gratitude heals worry.

Every time, I remember to I try to breathe in, hope, peace, and love, and to breathe out all that burdens me. Giving intentionality to my breath helps my body relax.

I am attempting to exercise, to get the powerful positive endorphins moving though my body, so my cells can be filled with healing. This creates a better balance between my mind and body.

I’ve been using the gift of remembering to put my heart at ease. I look back at times when I was filled with uncertainty that I somehow made it through. This is a source of inner strength that I can turn to over and over: I’ve gotten through difficult uncertainty before so I can do it again.

And I have been remembering that even though when I am uncertain, and I want answers right away, that getting them right away isn’t always that easy. But that the answers will come when they are supposed to, and whatever they are, I will be okay.

And I am working at being in the present moment, instead of always looking at the future.

A message to leave you with:

Thich Nhat Hanh Quote by Bella Bleue

How about you? What do you do with uncertainty that helps you feel better?

I’m always looking for ways to help put balance back into my life. It certainly is a daily chore.

Blessings, Erin, Bella Bleue

©Bella Bleue Healing™ All Rights Reserved.
Please also visit my photography site: Photography by Bella Bleue.

See my Facebook page for daily inspirations and messages.

Inspiration, Spirituality

What does Faith Feel like?

Faith Quote by Bella Bleue

So often we hear the statement, “Just have faith!” or the question, “Why do you have so little faith in me?” In every day conversation we may talk with others about what we believe. Or we may discuss what faith means. But how often do you take the time to really reflect on your experience of faith and feel faith alive within your body?

I’ve been reflecting on what faith feels like for me lately.  I’ve been needing to connect to faith that is not just talked about, but felt within. For me faith that is really deeply felt is faith that is real. It is a tangible gift, that I can turn to whenever I need to, where ever I am, no matter what is happening in my life. It’s the kind of faith that is not just felt in my mind, but in my body. And because it is within my body, and because there is nothing more real than than what I  experience through my body;I know that my faith is real.

When we are yearning for something good in our lives, something we can trust in, something we believe has benevolence and love for us, it can only fill us with hope. This faith fills our inner being with a desire to be connected  to that which we feel desires good for us, and that will care for us. In other words, believing in the Spirit, the Divine, human goodness, etc. changes the way we feel within ourselves.  Once we are in relationship with this Benevolence  we become transformed within our very being.

For me, faith fills my heart with love. The kind of love that makes your heart soar to depths beyond you. My body feels transcended to the tops of the mountains where I become closer to all that is beyond me and at the same time my feet are on flat ground  where I can bend down and touch the petals of the tiniest flower and their softness between my fingers keeps me grounded here on earth.  This softness on my fingers travels throughout my being, and puts my body and mind at ease. The wind on the mountain top fills my breath with peace, and invites my arms to open wide, so that I might receive all that is being offered. I am in relationship with the Divine.

What does your experience of faith feel like for you?

Blessings, Erin, Bella Bleue

©Bella Bleue Healing™ All Rights Reserved.
Please also visit my photography site: Photography by Bella Bleue.

See my Facebook page for daily inspirations and messages.

Healing, Inspiration, Life

Getting in Your Own Way: Missing out on Love

“Who holds you?”

This has been one of the most powerful questions I have ever been asked.(I was in my spirituality residency [chaplaincy] at the hospital, and my supervisor asked me this as a reflection question). I was stunned that as I tried to respond, I began to cry. It was the kind of cry, where you have to work really hard to get yourself together. My tears seemed to be the only answer I could give, because I honestly didn’t know how to answer the question at all. After I left our meeting, I reflected some more, and I still couldn’t put my finger on it. Why was I feeling so broken, so confused by this question?

I did the natural thing for me: Evaluate my feelings…figure out where they stemmed from…what was the reason for my tears? I even sort of fought with myself internally about my tears: I know I am loved. I come from a family that loves me. I have people around me who love me. I believe God loves me. So why then do I feel so darn empty inside, each time I try to answer this question?

This happened in 2004. Here I am 9 years later, and I still reflect on this question. The question of, “Who holds you?” for me has always meant “Who loves you?” For many years, I kept searching for what Love was supposed to be like: that perfect kind of love. But as time has gone on I realize that by searching for perfect Love, many times I’ve missed the opportunity to really embrace moments of Love in my life, because I was afraid that it wasn’t the “right” kind of love, or the way love was “supposed to be.” So I walked around life feeling empty, when Love was all around me, waiting patiently for me to let it in.

My answer to this question has changed over the years. I’ve found a peace inside myself over time…instead of trying to figure out my reaction to this question over the years, I’ve learned to  “Let it be;” i.e., trust more deeply that life will reveal its answers to me, when it is the right time.  And in many ways, I finally feel I have come to an answer that I feel to be most truthful to who I am both in my every day life and in my spiritual life. I now recognize that each time I was trying to figure out where Love was in my life,  I was actually preventing myself from experiencing it because I was searching too hard for it; i.e. I was getting in my own way of  really being able to feel “held.” Instead of searching for love in my life, I now allow myself to feel Love, to experience Love, and most importantly Love myself so that I can even more honestly share my love with others and receive love from others. In other words, I allow Love to be what it is, and not what I expect it to be. I’ve gotten out of my own way! Now I feel safe and secure with Love’s arms holding me up, with a strength that will  never break. Love is always there for me, and for you. It’s everywhere in nature, in people, in God, in the Spirit, in this amazing gift of Life, and inside you…you just need to give yourself the freedom to experience it without putting up so many walls.

How are you going to let Love into your life?

Rumi Love Quote

We all search for relationships in our lives, and deeper connections…open yourself to looking deeper within you, so that LOVE may spring forth anew for you.

You are Beloved. You are Loved.

So I leave you with my question today, “Who holds you?” 

…and just remember that whatever your answer is today, it may change again tomorrow: be gentle with yourself, offer yourself love…and your answers will come. I have faith that they will for you.

Blessings, Erin, Bella Bleue

©Bella Bleue Healing™ All Rights Reserved.
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Blessing, Connecting to the wonder we are

You are a Living Blessing

Once blessed, [you] are blessed forever.

–Rachel Naomi Remen, M.D.

The verbal act of blessing is a marvelous gift. I have been pondering the gift of blessing more intentionally as I look upon my 3 year old son this week. I have been very attune to my feelings as a parent these last days, thinking of what it is like for all these families of Sandy Hook Elementary  who have suffered so greatly because of the loss of their children  and daily sending my prayers around them. It  has been touching to read about the acts of service that have been offered to honor the lives of those who have died. See Ann Curry’s  #26 Acts.  But as I have thought about these acts,  I have also began to think more about the children who have lived through this terror: the children who will carry the fear, the hurt, the loss of their childhood innocence with them forever,and I realized they too need to be remembered. They too need to be celebrated. They too need to be blessed. They need to be allowed to be children, and to be celebrated as children. We need to bless the living while they are here, so that they recognize their lives as blessed.

One of my favorite authors introduced to me in my training as a spiritual counselor was Dr. Rachel Naomi Remen. She shares stories that invite you to look more deeply at your own sacredness, and that invite you to celebrate your life as you are living. The quote I shared today, comes from a wonderful story she shares called, Blessings, from her book, My Grandfather’s Blessings. She shares a story of how her grandfather would bless her each time she was with him…how he accepted her and celebrated her for just being the little girl she was created to be right there in the moment. And that these blessings have stayed with her forever.

So I invite you to act out service whenever you can, but make blessing those you meet a part of your day every day, by receiving them just as they are at that moment, with an open heart: Sit with those who are grieving and listen, praise your children for just being the wonderful individuals that they are,  tell your friends that they are a blessing in your life, and so on.  And remember that no matter how life treats you or what befalls you, “Once you are blessed, you are blessed forever.”  So even if that blessing came along when you were 1 day old, you are blessed each and every day since then:

This is a blessing that says you are a wonder of the world, you are amazing just as you are, you are a beautiful soul, a wonderful friend, a Divine creation, a symbol of love; you are a blessing unto others, and to yourself. 

By offering blessing to those we meet, and by recognizing ourselves as a blessing as well, we heal the world, and celebrate life.

I join you in this offering of blessing. I will continue to work at teaching my son how to love, how to do acts of service, how to “pay it forward,” every day of his life. But right now, most importantly I will bless him, and love him for all that he his, so one day when he walks out the door, and I am not there to guide him through his day, he will know he is beloved, so no matter what struggles he encounters, he will already know deep in his heart he is blessed; and that will be something no one can take away from him, but it will also be a reminder each day for him, that he is wonderful, and that his life matters. And by blessing him, I will teach him to bless others along his journey: to take the time to be present to people, to celebrate their lives, to bless this gift of life that he has and that he shares with all of us who live on this planet.

You are a blessing quotes

You are a blessing!
Blessings to you, Erin, Bella Bleue
©Bella Bleue Healing
™ All Rights Reserved.
Please also visit my photography site: Photography by Bella Bleue

Discovering Strength, Healing

Loving the Best We Can: Living through Tragedy.

Yesterday, afternoon, my son and I were visiting a friend and her daughter. The children played and we talked about the challenges of being parents, and how hard Life can be when we love our children so deeply. We had no idea about anything that was happening in Newtown, CT, as we discussed the challenges of life. Life was happening right where we were, and yet LIFE was also happening only a couple hours away from our home.

As we went about our visit, we engaged our children, resolving conflicts and teaching them how to acknowledge each other’s feelings, especially when they hurt the other child’s feelings. Sometimes the children  freely went up to the other to say I’m sorry, other times they resisted feeling they had a right to defend themselves. And yet, through it all we offered them our LOVE, in the very best way we knew how…accepting and receiving both children as beloved, beautiful, and whole…we affirmed them, redirected them, challenged them, we mirrored empathy and compassion for the other, as well as for self.   Both my friend and I, acted out of LOVE for our children, and for each other’s child as Sacred, Beautiful, and Whole.

After we said our good-byes my son and I got into our car, and turned on the radio, and then we began to hear The News. But none of the radio stations mentioned what had happened. It was as though, God, was watching over me as a mom, to not know what happened as I drove,  because when I took a moment to cook dinner and go on my phone to check the web, I began to sob, and the sounds of the cook vent drowned out my tears, as my son played on the floor with his cars in the other room. I would have probably had to pull off the road if I had been driving, and how would I tell my 3 year old son why mommy was crying?

Our hearts ache as parents, as people who love, as people who are deeply good. Every day, we Live, we have to work at Life. There is something about encountering the Sacred innocence of children in pain, that breaks at our souls. Its a deep hallow grief that goes to our core. This pain we feel, says something about who we are as we have been created: We were not made to be so broken. We were not made to ache the way we do. Our created selves were made to be whole, to be filled with love.

So I ask myself, deeply, as a parent, a mother, a wife, a friend, a sister, a daughter, am I loving the right way? As I engaged my child and lead him in conflict resolution, and learning to accept and love the other even when your feelings have been hurt, I wonder, am I teaching him LOVE? I hope and pray that I am every day of my life.

What happened in Newtown wasn’t just about one person, it is about all of us. It’s about our culture that glorifies violence, and death. We hush our voices when we talk about God, and so often we give up on trying to learn how to Love the other, because it’s too hard or he or she doesn’t complement us the way we feel they should, so we give up and fill ourselves with emptiness or loneliness instead.

Life goes on around us all the time. We may not be in the middle of the chaos, or we might be right in the center of Ground Zero; where ever we are Life is happening. We have a choice each day, how we are going to offer our love to our children, our spouses, our friends, and neighbors. We have a choice to stop and pause, no matter how busy our days are, and let someone else know, “I SEE YOU. I AM TOTALLY PRESENT TO YOU: TO LISTEN TO YOU, TO LOVE YOU, TO HEAR WHAT YOU HAVE TO SAY BOTH IN YOUR WORDS, AND IN THE EMOTIONS OF YOUR BODY.”  We also have a choice to let God, Spirit, Love, into our lives more, so that we don’t have to do all this hard work alone. For we have a Creator who desperately wants to be a part of our lives, and to carry our burdens for us. But so often we don’t want the help, or we are too lost to ask for help, because so many of us are just too busy to notice when someone is hurting or we turn away.

So today, and every day, remember to take the time to LOVE. It will be the greatest gift you can ever give, and ever receive. And keep trying, Keep Loving the Best you can every day, for you, and for all those you cross paths with.

May God, ease the pain of the brokenhearted, and enter our lives, to teach us more deeply about LOVE.

Tell and show those you meet along your walk in life & Tell and show yourself:

You are Loved Quote

May you be blessed by Love, Erin, Bella Bleue
©Bella Bleue Healing
™ All Rights Reserved.
Please Visit my Photography blog: Photography by Bella Bleue

Connecting to the wonder we are, Inspiration, Spirituality

There’s No Doubting: “You are Wonderfully Made.”

“You are [beautifully] and wonderfully made.”* It is a truth that runs through the very being of your bones; it is a truth that lies deep within the core of your being, the life-source within you.

Maybe you believe this. Maybe only sometimes you do. Maybe you are unsure…

I believe this as my truth. It’s just sometimes, I find it really hard to trust in it as always my truth.  Lately I’ve been falling into the trap of self-doubt (winter is never easy on my sometimes weary soul). But I won’t be defeated by this doubt! And as a result opened myself to positive inspiration and created this message for me, for you, for any of us, who are doubtful of the wonder we really truly are.

Trust Quote by Bella Bleue

And so that I don’t get stuck in self-doubt: I will continue to turn to my faith. I will also sit with the stories1, of others who too questioned, and doubted, but found their strength in being honest about what they were feeling, and in return received the gift of Divine Love: The kind of love that says, even when you are doubtful, I still see how “beautifully and wonderfully made you are; and I love you always, even through your doubt.”

It’s okay to be doubtful at times. We all are. It is alright to question ourselves, and what kind of wife, friend, mother, husband, father, etc. we are so that we can  be challenged to grow and develop more deeply into the persons we were created to be.

But to be doubtful of your innate creation, as beloved, beautiful  and wonderful, that’s completely unfair to you.  It takes away your self worth, and diminishes the value of your relationship with those who love you & your Creator, Spirit, God who thinks of you as a miraculous child….I needed to be reminded of this today.

Thank you to each of you for taking the time to listen. Knowing we are in this life together makes the mystery and struggles of life so much easier to understand when we travel together.

Blessings to beautiful, wonderful You.

Erin, Bella Bleue

*See Psalm 139:14
1. See Scripture and authors such as Max Lucado, Rachel Naomi Remen, John O’Donohue or whoever teaches you about the messages that are most dear to your own heart!

©Bella Bleue Healing™ All Rights Reserved.
[
I decided to change my blog name to Bella Bleue Healing™, because my deepest hope for each of us the gift of healing in some way every day].

Please also visit my photography site: Photography byBella Bleue.

Healing, Spirituality

Maybe LIFE really is All about LOVE.

Sometimes life is extremely challenging, even when it seems there is no reason for it to be. It’s the kind of challenge when something just feels off inside you. Maybe it’s that your heart just isn’t happy, and you don’t know why; maybe you’re feeling lonely, even though you saw your friends today; maybe you’re feeling sad, even though the sun is shining; etc.

We are all looking for ways to make ourselves feel better. But no matter what works, we all know feeling better, comes and goes. It is a natural rhythm of Life to have ups and downs, and a plateau every now and again. It is easier to share the good, than to allow the bad to have a voice. Because it is easier to share with others that you are “put-together,” and can handle anything that comes your way. Otherwise, you assume, others will think you are weak, even though they are putting on the same mask as you.–Life–our everyday making it through–has created us to believe that we always have to be strong on the outside. But our real LIFE—says You are human just like me, and me, and me, and me…and we all feel a total arrange of emotions.

So maybe we all just need to be a little kinder to ourselves: Allowing ourselves to be really who we are: beautiful and broken, broken and beautiful. Maybe strength is really about giving ourselves permission to be honestly who we were each created to be, rather than being the “well-put-together-all-the time” persons we think we need to be or ought to be. Maybe LIFE is really all about LOVE–accepting yourself, and accepting others; choosing to forgive and allow yourself to be forgiven; welcoming the Sacred into your life, whatever you call it God, Universe, Spirit, Beloved, etc., so you always have someone to share your journey with.

Love Life Quote

Yesterday, I was having a difficult day. Everything, seemed to be overwhelming me, and no matter how hard I tried to keep my spirits up, I just couldn’t get out of my funk. But then I remembered something as I washed the dishes, I had forgotten to talk with God. So I did. I just said, “I’m having a hard time, and You know how I am when I feel this way. If there is anything You can do to help me feel just a bit better…” A little later my husband called me, and told me the thing I was worrying about, I didn’t need to bother myself with any longer, and then suggested I take my son to the playground.  His reassurance made me feel a bit more at ease. When we got to the playground my son ran around, until he planted himself at the sandbox, with a bunch of little boys. I sat down next to another mom. She was very welcoming and friendly. When we got in the car to go home, I realized I was feeling better.  God had listened to my prayer and gave me the phone call from my husband, and brought me to a playground where there was a kind mother to share with and feel listened-to.  I experienced Love from God, my husband and this mother.

I wonder what kind of world we would live in if each of us gave each other the gift of Love? Maybe these hard days wouldn’t be so hard. And maybe we’d all realize we are all just as human as the next person. Just maybe being “put-together” would mean you are a person of many feelings and emotions, but most of all you are a giver and receiver of LOVE; instead of being able to do it all, have it all, and always be happy.

Yeah, I wonder…how about you?…

Blessings, Erin, Bella Bleue
©Bella Bleue Healing, Health & Inspiration for Your Life™ All Rights Reserved.
Please also visit my photography site: Photography by Bella Bleue