You see these earrings? They're called Storytellers. They're gorgeously long and have tiny hand painted flowers and crystals that I was told by the artist will catch sunlight and project rainbows onto your face. Yes, I need that. A talisman to conjure stories and rainbows.
I have a dear friend, Kehau, who is a fantastic person to talk story with. She is funny and wise and an incredible visionary. Often when Kehau and I talk story, our conversations begin with, "When we were small, we were so poor that...." From there, the story continues with food we ate (like hinalea for dinner because that's all my dad caught that day), or the cars our parents drove (a bright orange VW van with the floor so completely rotted out that my dad had to take out the seats and because he didn't want us to sit on the floor of the van he put upside down buckets for us to sit on. And because the buckets weren't attached to the floor every time he took a turn we would be holding on for dear life to our bucket which would be tipping over!) We talked about hand me down clothes and tin foil on tv antennas and books fo' dayz from the public library. Our faces light up with each story full of adventure and knowing "what it's like" we laugh and laugh. There is no shame in our stories. We love it.
One of the things I loved most about my childhood was the security of having my parents home. Everyday when I came home from school, my mom was home. More often than not, she would be sitting on the floor of the parlor folding diapers. Piles and piles of white cloths for diapers. I learned at a young age how to fold the diapers, and I also learned that by sitting there "helping" I could have my mom's attention and talk her head off about - whatever was on my mind.
I also loved the time we spent with my dad. Every day during the summer, my dad took us to the beach. We would wake up early, pack peanut butter sandwiches and water, and pile into his truck. (The van went to heaven). Mynah Bird was on the radio and the Turtles "So Happy Together" would be playing on the radio. Most days we were the first ones at Coconut Island. The sand in the "little kid pond" was undisturbed and the water was crystal clear. We'd stay all day and fall into bed toasty brown, peeling, sometimes bitten by water fleas, exhausted, and so, so happy.
When I was 15, my mom graduated with a nursing degree and at the same time, my dad graduated from the police academy. They both worked - not just full time jobs - but they worked shifts. It was not uncommon for me to come home to no parents, and go to sleep, still, with no parents.
I'll never forget the day I came home from school and opened up the refrigerator and saw - a carton of milk. This was surprising because our whole life we only had free USDA powdered milk. We mixed it in a quart size glass Pyrex measuring cup. I stared at the half gallon carton of milk and though, "Wow. We're rich."
Then I closed the door to the refrigerator and thought, "I wish we could just be poor again."
I shared this story a few months ago at the Women's Leadership Summit. A few weeks later, while listening to a chapter from Gabriella Bernstein's May Cause Miracles abouthealing your relationship with money, I flashed back to this moment in front of the refrigerator. I knew I was being challenged to revisit my belief about what it means to be "rich" and the resentment I held toward my parent's prosperity.
I knew, I no longer had to stay stuck at the refrigerator.
I knew, I could choose to believe differently.
And so I have been.
I've been curious and welcoming of abundance and allowed myself to joyfully celebrate the many ways I experience abundance - it is, yes, in finances, and it is also in many other forms. I've connected with incredible friends and mentors and we share deeply rich conversations. I've experienced abundance in quiet morning moments, sitting at the edge of my bed listening to the wind chimes, and celebrating the water I have to drink at my bedside, and the exquisite, hot coffee that awaits me. The coffee that I can sip slowly from a mug - and not drink hurriedly from a traveller cup as I rush off to work. I've felt abundance walking down the corridors of the library. Oh my overwhelming goodness - all those amazing wonderful books. And it just doesn't stop. Abundance in opportunities to create partnerships. Abundance in being loved. Abundance in being forgiven. Splendidly rich ideas, and music, and tea, and cho-co-late.
I'm still a newbie when it comes to understanding quantum physics and the power of our thoughts as the originating source that sets "reality" into motion. So I don't know if these miracles have happened because I've changed my belief, or if it was always there, and like Mr. Reed, I'm just "seeing" for the first time.
I know, right. *bawling*
Step away from that refrigerator of negativity and limiting belief.
This is your year of abundance.
It is full of magic and color and friends and inhales of quiet morning air full of promise and nights full of belly laughs that leave you gasping for oxygen.
This is the promise of our Maker.
"You will make known to me the path of life;
In Your presence is fullness of joy;
In Your right hand there are pleasures forever." Pslam 16:11
Fullness. Of. Joy.
You know what abundance feels like? It feels like fullness of joy.
Not watered down, lumpy, room temperature, stir-it-yourself-with-a-fork joy, but rich, creamy, ice-cold, abundantly flowing from the carton, just receive it as it all pours out fullness-of-joy.