Tag Archives: Dream

All the little lights

I believe the Universe sends us signs.

Signals, open doors, messages from God, however you want to define ‘opportunity’ – this is what I’m referring to. The world, it seems, is quite magical then, wouldn’t you agree? Because no matter what you believe, no matter what religion you follow or don’t, no matter your opinions on anything for that matter – we all have moments of opportunity whispering to us each day. It is up to us to hear them and follow.

Sometimes these doors of opportunity are quite small and narrow,

With a tiny peek of light behind the threshold,

Leading us to question if we’ve even seen a light after all?

Yet other moments offer us an abundance of green lights chanting

‘Yes, GO!’ – an openness so vast that it would be foolish of us to avoid.

Whatever the case, all the little lights of opportunity are here for us right now.

 

Over the last few months, I’ve found that my inner light is quite dim. I reached out to a friend last week, wondering if maybe she needed a friend too. Perhaps her light could strengthen mine? In a matter of days, I found myself in her cozy home, coffee in hand, chatting again as we did when we were freshman in college. Five hours into the afternoon, we continued to reminisce and conjure up plans to explore Europe together. I left her home feeling renewed, brighter than the day before.

Last Thursday, I woke with a sense of relief, feeling grateful after Wednesday’s chat with another beautiful soul who resides thousands of miles away. In the comfort of my office (and with the help of modern technology) we laughed, shared stories, advised each other, and concluded 3 hours of conversation with a “See you soon!”

Again, I was reminded of the infinite light that is here for all of us now, if only we could see it.

After a sweet embrace and a kiss goodbye with my son on Thursday, I ventured toward a local bookstore where I write and edit, write and edit, write and edit, and reach out to publishing companies. It is a wonderful time for myself and my dreams, but some days it is maddening because I grow tired and feel as though my efforts are time wasted. I sat for a moment, my dreams trapped in a red binder opposite me waiting to be embraced by the world. To continue with this crazy dream of a book? Or not to continue? I wrestled myself for a few moments.

I greeted a café employee and ordered my usual. He was quite inquisitive for 9AM and smiled, “What are you up to today?”

“Oh, just work,” I replied nervously.

He seemed disappointed with my brief reply.

(Cue inner confidence after an awkward silence)

I continued, “Actually I’m writing a book. It’s good motivation to come here and see everyone else’s books. So I’m here three mornings a week. The coffee helps.” I forced a smile.

Eyes widening and without hesitation he chirped, “Hey, that’s what we’re here for! Here you go, it’s on the house,” and he handed over the coffee.

We chatted briefly about my journey and passion for writing.

He seemed intrigued, and wished me all the best. I couldn’t thank him enough.

I still can’t believe I embraced a stranger.

Or maybe, I can’t believe a stranger embraced me…

Again, my inner light was brightened.

 

Feeling energized and grateful for this small (huge) act of kindness, I set up my ‘mobile office’ and wondered if I should edit? Or just read and relax? Three hours to kill while Lucas is in school…

And suddenly, as if the Universe heard my plight, a direct message popped up on my phone from a blog reader:

“Hi, Kiley! I just wanted to tell you that I am looking forward to reading your book.”

Stunned, flattered, humbled, excited, I was ready to begin.

And that was it, that’s all it took for me to continue. As if chatting with friends who know my soul wasn’t reassurance enough, the Universe offered me just one more green light. One more, “Go, Ki!” One extra little light to show me the way. And I was (and still am) beyond grateful.

 

The Universe is opening doors right now for you! Are you looking? Are you listening to the whispers? Are you alert? Are you open? Are you ready? Whatever it is that you want in your life, you must first ask for it. Then be open to what is here for you right now.

If you want friendship, ask for it. Give it too.

If you want love, ask for it. Be it too.

If you want compassion, ask for it. Show it too.

If you want inspiration, ask for it. Spread it too.

If you want certain things to manifest in your life, you must first plant the seed. Embody them…

And then, without even knowing it, these things will nourish your life, all on their own.

Trust, and let go of the outcome.

Just be open to right now.

Continue, yes, it’s time.

If you need a green light, here it is: GO!

 

Light and love,

Ki

half ki face

“Just because” — a story of gratitude

A little boy wakes with his father before dawn. He sits sleepily on his haunches on the bathroom floor while his father readies himself for the day. The two remain quiet in the hushed space between them, catching glimpses of the other in the mirror.

His father lays him next to his mother before departing at dawn.

“I love you,” they say together, and the boy returns to sleep.

A patient morning light wakes the boy and his mother to stir. He runs to the window to find fresh snow this sixth day of January.

“This is my lucky day, Mom!”

“Why sweetie?”

“Just because.”

 

I greet today with that little boy in my heart. His eagerness to spend precious moments with his father, his willingness to remain quiet when others are not yet ready to speak, his ability to completely surrender to sleep – and most admirable, his unattached appreciation for living, for simply being here, rising again, today. What a magical way to live.

There are days like today when I am so overcome with gratitude for that wonderful little creature I call my son. There are days like today when my questions are answered in a mysterious and magical way, and I am again reminded to keep going.

The past few weeks have been an emotional and blissful ride. I found an editor who knows my heart and shares my soul. Friends and family continue to cheer me on as I fight myself on the road toward realizing my dreams. Dubious thoughts creep in often, pushing me to question the purpose of these wild and untamed dreams of mine. Last night I cried, I told myself I don’t know how to do ‘this,’ I shared my fears with a loved one, and I left my office in disarray for the night.

I woke up this morning to the story of the little boy — his simple yet profound way of living lifting a weight from my heavy head. His diligence in waking with his father every morning reminds me to return again to my office this morning. His open ears and patient way of listening teach me to remain open in the silence of now even at the most exhausting hour of our existence. His ability to surrender to sleep and then wake with curious and grateful eyes shows me how to truly live. Yes, I believe the Universe is speaking to me now.

We are only human. We tire, we doubt, we fall to our knees and ask for answers when it seems there are none to be had. I believe that when we ask enough questions and allow patience to fill the space between frustration and understanding, we are again called to keep walking our unique paths. We are again called to look outside in awe of what is happening right now… if for no other reason than “just because…”

Just because living is the greatest question, the greatest answer, the greatest privilege of being a human on this earth.

 

I hope you have the strength of diligence, the capacity for empathy, the eagerness to greet today as if it were your first chance at life.

I wonder what life would be like if we all marveled at the world today just because…

With love and light,

Ki

me and my guy

 

Be

I believe there are times when life moves through me with such speed that I forget why I get up each day. Yes, there are days when I rise as scheduled and sleepwalk from moment to moment. In the next two weeks, I will attend two weddings, one birthday celebration, three soccer games, and one funeral. In a 14-day span, I will laugh, I will undoubtedly cry, I will cheer at the top of my lungs, I will be angry, and I will experience such blissful joy that I am again, moved to tears. My soul will be joyous, my heart will ache under a black dress, and my head will again come to know that life moves through us all, it’s fluidity an undeniable gift.

I do not know if I am prepared for this lesson, to appreciate the precious gift we have each day. It seems a bit difficult to appreciate life when mourning a man whose own life ended far too soon. I am feeling many emotions this week. A bride-to-be excitedly glows as we chat in anticipation of her big day. Hours later, grief glazes Danny’s eyes as his uncle’s final days flitter in the space between us. I seem to wear everyone’s emotions lately. I simply cannot avoid it. It is who I am. It is in my nature of being.

Perhaps it is a gift that I can find a piece of myself in others’ feelings and experiences. We all – sooner or later – try on these different hats of emotion as we experience life. Each one of us feels the same feelings eventually. Joy, sadness, grief, nervous anticipation… the list goes on. As new beginnings and abrupt endings course their way through us, we live every emotion, each day, every one of us.

As few of you know, I began a journey back in the spring that has led me to creating a story for my son to read one day, when he is ready. In this story, I relive experiences in my young adult life that perhaps he will relate to, maybe even find relief in knowing. I explain to him that all emotions are okay. The ups and the downs are good and healthy and human. Bliss and grief and happiness alike – in our own way, we feel it all in time. I write to him,

“Your sadness, I have felt – though perhaps not today.

Over lifetimes, trust me

We all feel the same way.

Be present with it all.

That is the lesson.

That is the gift.

Be with each moment.

Now is your time.”

 

For whatever you are celebrating, or grieving, this moment offers you a chance to feel the experience of being alive. Whether you are high, or have fallen so low, those around you are here now to guide you through. As you wake each day, step with risk – and land with trust. You were created to feel it all.

It is time to be who you are.

You are loved.

-Ki

blog tree ki stuffs

Thanks to Mark Nepo for guiding me daily.

And to a lovely friend who says I think too much and should just be… you’re right. Thank you for being honest with me always.

 

I’m getting better at it

My son is a little Buddha — a tiny guy with a big belly and an even bigger heart. I first started the ‘little Buddha’ joke when I noticed skin playing peekaboo from underneath his t-shirt. All parents go through this with their children. Growth spurts ignite the dreaded ‘in between sizes’ phase. One day the shirt fits, the next… sheesh! All you see is belly! We laugh together as I tickle the exposed part of his belly, and that was it for a time.

Suddenly, I find that my once lighthearted reference is now quite a fact: my son is a little Buddha, wise with untainted knowledge and insight, a being capable of unmatched love and compassion. Over a cup of hot chocolate one chilly morning, Lucas eyed me and sternly voiced his concerns.

“Mom… if you give me too many pieces of your heart, you won’t be alive.” He smiled, wiggled in his chair, and continued sipping hot chocolate with marshmallows.

(Cue shivers up the spine) — I mean good god!! What?? How did our conversation shift from Tuesday morning cartoons to the challenges of parenting?? I smiled in silence and stared at the Crayola craft table that separated me and the enlightened being who cheerfully scanned my face for a reaction. I was baffled. Mute and dumbfounded. And as any other over-thinking parent would do, I fell into the depths of introspection.

Am I giving too much of myself? Do I love him too much? Can he sense my anxiety? Does he know I’m exhausted? How does he KNOW these things? Does he know I’m a people pleaser? Can he read the worries on my face? Can a three-year-old know and comprehend the idea that pleasing everyone first leaves little time and energy for oneself?

Well, he’s figured out the secret to life.

He is right. Every word is the truth: If you give too many pieces of your heart, you won’t be alive. His words scared the hell out of me and ignited tears, so I politely excused myself from our hot chocolate date. Perhaps they were tears of relief. Perhaps they were tears of joy. I’m not sure. Perhaps I cried for all of the moms and dads who undoubtedly face this issue: when we give too much of ourselves, we (and those closest to us) suffer the most.

To say I struggle with this issue is an understatement. I am consumed with balancing my well-being and that of my family, friends, and blog readers. I am plagued with a hunger to tend to everyone else first. I’m convinced it is engrained in my DNA. I want to ease pain, fix everyone and every tough situation that arises. I smile and tend to others before giving a thought about me and my needs. Motherly instincts remind me that every waking moment with my son is an opportunity to teach, play, learn, and explore. Embarrassing as it is to admit, I sit at the computer replying to emails from friends and new readers of mine across the globe — advising, listening to, and easing others before I’ve showered, eaten, even used the restroom! I am obsessed with helping others; it consumes me; and I think Lucas sees that. I know he does.

I know he suffers because of it. I know he hurts inside when Mommy is stressed and on edge. I know he vibes off of that, and in knowing this, I have a choice. I can keep going, keep doing, keep helping, keep tending to everyone and everything and risk becoming worn down by life and living and caring. I could walk on this winding road for years. I could. I know this road quite well. It’s beautifully paved with exhaustion, sleepless months, and anxiety. But it’s familiar.

Or I could slow down. I could put a pause on all of it. I could prioritize my health, my family, and my goals. I could tell my readers that I need some time to respond. I could take a moment to realize how absurd it truly is to worry about everyone else first before myself! I could toss the selfish feelings aside and go to the gym. I could turn off my phone and reply to emails in the morning. I could go for a walk with my son, and leave everything else in the back of my mind for an hour. Yes, I could do that.

And I am. I am spending much less time blogging, connecting, Skyping, pleasing, helping, etc. and more time focusing on my health and well-being. It feels strange when I choose an afternoon at the gym, but my body thanks me afterward. It feels selfish to spend an hour juicing veggies when I could be practicing counting to 100 with my son, but my spirit thanks me afterward. Sometimes it feels like a waste of time to lay in bed with that book I’ve been itching to read when I could be cleaning and washing dishes. But my mind thanks me afterward.

I wonder if other people are like this? I wonder if people-pleasing is a disease? I wonder if others suffer from it as I do? I wonder a lot about these things. I wonder if it’s curable? I wonder if it’s a plague or a gift? I wonder if it’s possible to live in the Now if I’m constantly caring for others? I wonder what it will take to truly put myself and my needs first? I wonder if hearing my son’s insight is the moment that I need to wake up?

I wonder, what is your moment? When will you wake up and take care of yourself first? I’ll be (less) anxiously awaiting to hear from you guys 😉

Take care, be well, do something for yourself today. Slow down — the world will be here when you get back.

 

xo,

Ki

 

Photo: @redxluckyxcharms

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

 

 

 

 

 

Who are you?

My name is Kiley. I was born on December 6. I am a left-handed Sagittarius. I write poetry. I love coffee. I cry during previews at the movie theater. I laugh by myself often. I have an obsession with touching trees as I pass them. Talking to strangers is my greatest fear…. And biggest source of intrigue. I love the idea of traveling, but familiarity soothes my soul. When I say I enjoy ‘being alone’ what I really mean is that I want others to be around me, just quietly. All of these qualities describe me… and yet, they don’t.

These things are not who I am. None of the ‘things’ you say define you, either. We are very good at convincing ourselves of who we are. These qualities are, in fact, just thoughts, just tools used to label ourselves, to separate ‘us’ from ‘them.’ So who are we? Who, or what, is underneath every thought that we have? Does anyone really know for sure?

What if we came to accept that none of us knows anything about who we truly are? What if we dropped all labels that we use to separate ourselves from others … and we simply existed, together? What would the world be like then?

Tell me – who are you? Who is that being beneath all labels, beneath all thoughts? Can you answer? Ideas come and they go, but what is waiting there between each thought? The mind is a powerful tool. It tells you that you are a parent, you are Caucasian, you are a college graduate, you are an employee, a nurse, a brother, that you are happy, you are worried, you are anxious, you are sad, you are a baker, you are a politician, you can’t afford that trip, you are incapable of writing that book, you are unworthy. It tells you who you are and how to be that person. And most of us listen. We obey. We succumb. Why do we assume that these labels define who we truly are? Why are we at the whim of what our minds tell us? Do you realize that your mind has been conditioned since the moment you were born? From your first breathe, you were told who you are and given a name with which you identify. And what if, today, you quieted your mind…

What if your mind was silent and didn’t tell you who you are today? What is left? Who is there reminding you to breathe?

It is quite a mystery to me. Maybe I am the mystery. Maybe you are a mystery. The truth is that there is something magical that lives in each of us that is indescribable with human language. It lives and grows us each day. Whatever it is, it is strong, resilient, magical. Whatever it is, it lives in us all. Don’t forget that the next time you are quick to judge another person, or hurt another person. What is in him is in you too.

Keep asking the tough questions. Let’s be puzzled by what seems obvious. Never stop searching for the answers.

With compassion, we grow.

xo,

Ki

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Thoughts on ‘being a writer’

Some mornings

I spend hours in my head

Writing poems

Dancing with singed hearts

And kissing strangers.

 

Some afternoons

I sip lukewarm coffee and eat

Sour candy,

Talking to myself,

Spewing thoughts onto penned paper,

Daydreaming of editors

Fancying my plight

To be a writer.

 

Oddest occupation —

Fictionally, speaking.

No wonder

I crave touch

So desperately

The only true affirmation

Of my life’s work.

I hear you, they say.

I know.

 

Silent speaker of the world

I am

Sickly mind squashing

Courage

Hungry to try again, sometimes,

Provided inspiration.

 

Lazy, perhaps

Weird, perhaps

Maybe definitely special

They say.

Maybe.

 

I am a writer

Head inside a dream

Come true,

Or is it?

To all my friends who ask about the book

I don’t want to say it

Because when you say things out loud

Then people know what you’re up to

Which is terrifyingly awkward

When they don’t give you the reaction you’d

Hoped for

 

That’s the problem with hope

And expectation

They always leave your stomach gurgling

With embarrassment,

Grit and grime left on your teeth

After you choke on reality

And belly your illusions once again

 

So I’ll whisper what it is I’m doing

With my eyes

The way I bite my lip

The incessant brush of fingers through my hair

When you ask me ‘how I’m doing’

And what I’ve been up to lately

 

Can’t you see

Right here

Right now?

This

Is my answer.

 

blog tree ki stuffs

Stay tuned

Cheers, readers.

 

It begins

I live it

I breathe it

And now it’s all I want to do

 

I thought for a while

How do I explain it to everyone?

Then I thought,

Stop thinking and start writing

 

And that’s all I do these days

I can’t explain it

I just wake up and it begins

And keeps going

Until my eyes rest at night

And even when I sleep, it writes itself

Onto my brain

And before I know it

I’m awake writing bits and pieces

Of everything I think I thought

And it begins again

And again, every day

 

And each time I doubt everything

I do

My lover’s eyes whisper

Keep going

And that’s exactly what I do.

It begins.

———————-

I’ll be writing more freely like this for a while. I find the unstructured, poetic style comforting. I find it truthful, I find it healing. I’ll be touching on all aspects of my life – Relationships, heartache, mommyhood, love, loss, friendships – openly and freely for all of you to see. I’ll use names when it’s appropriate to do so, and poetic verse when it’s not. I can’t wait to begin this raw writing approach… I guess I’ve already begun.

Now to begin sharing with you all what I’ve been thinking, feeling, realizing, and WRITING for the past few weeks. I won’t share too many details just yet — But, during my LifeofKi hiatus, I began somewhat of a personal project, and it is beautifully molding how I see and write about the world inside and outside of myself. This is my life, these are my thoughts, dreams, hopes, and fears – unguarded. All of it for you to see in the weeks to come! I’m ready to do this. I’m ready to speak about it all. I’m ready. Now, it begins. I can’t wait to hear what you think.

Cheers, readers.

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Rock and a soft place

Sometimes I find big rocks

And climb under

Every ounce of their weight

Upon me

And the heaviness saves me from the

Light

I hide within

 

Chewing on thick

Black dirt

As I wait it out.

 

Darkness

Loneliness

Embrace with

Open arms to those chronically ill

From agony.

 

Sometimes the darkness

Turns warm

From the sun

 

Rocks lift

From my crushing bones

I breathe a breath

Shared with you

And you laugh at

The absurdity of my

Climbing under

Dirty rocks.

 

I laugh in nervous anticipation,

Eye a boulder that will

Consume me

Soon again.

 

We laugh together,

And this is comforting

But not as comforting

As the agony that bleeds

In me.

 

Now I live,

Swimming in the space

Between a rock

And a soft place.

 

 

–Original Poem–

Human interaction is a peculiar thing. Describing what goes on in this head of mine is always so difficult in plain verse. I could talk about depression, anxiety, dark thoughts, but I’d rather just tell you that sometimes I hide under heavy rocks, and this is comforting, more so than truly living…. But it is in breaking free from my agony that allows for my passion of writing to continue. And in writing, I live. One day at a time.

I hope you find your passions, your hopeful ways of escape from the mundane, from the agony that you feel sometimes.

Keep living through the heaviness of the world. Keep going. Keep swimming.

What matters most is how well you walk through the fire.

-Charles Bukowski

Cheers, readers.

for blog -- rocks

Thaw

I trace every face

In search of your love.

I wonder if you do the same…

Like a lost child in search of her mother,

I am.

The weight of that simile

Suffocates me.

Be love, and I’ll show myself to you.

Resilience, live me

Until then.

 

My body is cold from this horrendous winter. I was told to wait patiently and sure enough, spring will show herself again. So ‘they’ said.

I waited, and here she is. Her warmth now mending the aching bones I carry. Like my body, my heart grows cold from relationships strained, and I build walls around it for protection. Yet just as seasons change and frozen lakes thaw, my heart grows warm as I lower these walls and open myself, once again, to those I love most.

I encourage you to do the same.

Cycles, seasons, all things impermanent. Be love, and forgive. Resilience is a beautiful color on you.

 

With love and light,

Ki

sun