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Zen Master Holly

I love being alone. I looooooooooovvvvvvvveeee it. But, you know, I’m a mom. I’m a wife. I’m a friend, sister, daughter, coach, customer, neighbor, client, driver, etc. and I’m so very blessed and grateful to be these things but they don’t afford me a lot of time to be alone. I mean ya’ll, I haven’t gone to the bathroom alone since early 2003. Gross? Absolutely. Exaggeration? A little - very little - but you get the point.

So, this morning as I stumbled fat-assedly into the kitchen to hop up on coffee and kickstart my day I interrupted my cat Holly (gift from Santa a few years back) sitting very still on the tile floor by the fridge. She looked up at me and I smiled at her as well as one can do pre-coffee and she promptly turned, stood up and sauntered out the pet door and into the back yard with a screw-you-I’m-aloof attitude. Familiar with the slight, I dismissed it and got the coffee going. Then, while stumbling back to the fridge for the creamer, I spied her out the window. She went just far enough away, out into the yard where just a sliver of sunlight was cutting through the trees, and returned to contemplative alone-ness. She was so very still. But I’m positive she was taking it all in - the birds chirping, the sound of traffic several streets away, dogs barking and the clanking thud of a pool being installed two houses down. And there she sat. Still. Alert.


In that moment, standing in my kitchen in my saggy underwear with an extra ten pounds on my frame, yesterday’s makeup under my eyes and an empty coffee mug in my hand I felt more than a little jealous of Holly. I felt like I really, really wished I was a cat.

Eckhart Tolle said the following, “I have lived with several Zen masters -- all of them cats.”

Preach it!

There is so much distraction all around me. School is back in session. Sports, dance, social events are all winding up - revving louder and louder and filling my calendar up. What gifts! I am so blessed. But, this year more than any other in my life, I am aware of the pain and the stress and the angst that goes along with all of it. All of the noise. All of the responsibility. While we never, ever truly know where we’ll be tomorrow, today - I truly know that. I feel it. Right now, for us, there are so many variables, employment, high schools, finances, choices. It's enough to make one hiss. But I know to get through all of it - I must slow down. I must pause. I must listen. Be present. Be still.

I know that when I do that all the stress and worry and angst - it disappears like a cat tail through a pet door.

So, to kickstart the evolution, I’ve jumped on the band wagon with some friends and I’m starting a 28-day vegan cleanse on Monday. I’m excited and a little nervous if I'm being totally honest. Will I be able to do it? I will try. I am eager to refocus, recharge, remember - me. I need to remember to remember me. I need to remember all the many parts of me, inside and out. Screw the worry. Total time waster worry is. Nothing comes from it anyway. So, I will take the discomfort of denying myself my cravings, my morning-getting-my-ass-in-gear-cuppa-joe, and come out the other side clear-headed. I am excited to remember that by staying in each moment, being mindful about what I put in my body, and mindful about my attitude and my awareness, I make things better for all around me. And aren't we all just here to help and to serve others? I guess me, is a good place to start. So I will take the lesson Holly demonstrated for me this morning. I will remember sometimes it's okay to walk away and be alone and be still and listen.

So, it's been a minute since I wrote here.... I’m so grateful for the wonderful adventures my family and I had in the heaven that is Cape Cod this past summer. I’m equally grateful to be back home in Los Angeles. My heart beats in two places.

Here’s to clarity! xo

#Cats #Zen #EckhartTolle #cleanse

© 2016 by Marion McNabb Grace

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