I’ve just spent a few days with the lovely Leah Cox. Leah is a fellow ‘Coach’ that I have gotten to know via the medium of Twitter of all things- which is somewhere I rarely hang out. From that medium we met in person whilst I was on a trip to see Marianne Williamson speak in London. You can read about that expereince here. Since that first meeting we have had gorgeous moments together – our conversations are always fun and she has such a beautiful ordinary lightness about her. I think mostly (and I shared this with her today) it is her ability to be present with the ordinary that is truly beautiful. Leah also did a Barefoot Talk last year and although we didn’t record it because the format was more interactive – she did record for me the audio I have attached again below – It is an extract from a book by Charles Eisenstein– which felt like a story I’ve knew from the beginning of time when I first heard it.
Just before she left to head back to Lancaster we were chatting about our lives and the beauty within the ordinary. As we chatted I looked up and started to laugh at a pile of our ordinary in the living room and yet in that moment it looked like a piece of art in fact I may have a go at trying to paint it- but in case I don’t -here’s the snap- The camera can be the paint brush today.
I feel like the contents of that tray summed up our life so completely in that moment. My husband’s love of surfing, and his sisters love of him in the gift of the book- the horns he bought in a second hand furniture shop 2 years ago still to get on the wall- the amethyst’s which I adore were birthday gifts to me, one from my daughter – the other from a dear friend. In the tray I could also see a gorgeous tube of hand cream, from another dear friend plus my son’s headphones that are apparently “broken” but well used. There is a jar of pencils, that makes me feel organised to have some at hand. There are pine cones because to me these are so beautiful- postcards, bits and bobs- all with an energy of the beautiful extraordinary ordinary life we lead.
We both looked at each other and smiled at the beauty of this tray of life that was set (or one might say dumped) on the surfing book to make room on the table for all of us at last night’s supper. As we did we breathed in the blessing of being 2 ordinary women who 5 years ago had no knowledge of each other both creating a ‘new ordinary’ and here we were 5 years later just hanging out. The joy we are both experiencing of simply going with the flow of our creative lives felt very present.
As we talked more Leah shared that ‘the new ordinary’ of her newer perspective on life is that she doesn’t expend energy worrying about the small stuff in the way that she used to. She just knows things will work through and she embraces that Life is happening in beautifully ordinary ways. As I looked at the plants in a particular, despite their wilting they suddenly looked even more beautiful mixed in with these ordinary everyday objects- ordinary life really is a unique piece of art.
Looking at this image reminds me of the quote by Jon Kabat Zinn “You can’t stop the ways but you can learn to surf.” which is is exactly what my dear friend Leah has realised she can do.
So take a look at your life today and just for a moment pause as you gaze at something that is in your home – something so completely ordinary to you and take a step back from it- increase your perspective- and you might just see the beauty and love that is there right at the heart of it – and if your life is feeling like an oddly filled tray right now – never fear because just like this tray you are actually surfing and from that point you can be sure you will always safely reach the shore.