I was amazed and delighted to learn there is a, “National Look Up at the Sky Day” on April 14th; I had to write something for it!
As a child and until I had a child of my own in my early thirties, I was the poster girl for this holiday! Someone once told me that they saw me walking down a country road, and they swore that my feet were not touching the ground! Perhaps they were exaggerating, but it wouldn’t have been by much. Allowing the trees and the sky to lift my spirits is how I managed to rise above many intolerable situations and maintain a positive outlook and an open heart. If I was feeling down, all I had to do was look up through the high branches of the trees at the sky above and I would feel great!
This worked for me until I became pregnant, when my hormones and the addition of someone new growing inside of me grounded me onto the earth! Suddenly, I couldn’t lift off anymore and I found myself faced with a lot of things I had been avoiding. This was very difficult and forced me to contend with circumstances more effectively. It took me a long time to adjust to this change, but the groundedness did not end with the pregnancy, because being a mother is not something you can do with your head in the clouds! So I had years to master this new experience. Now I am pleasantly amazed when someone tells me I am very grounded! They may not realize how hard I had to work for that!
I received a beautiful and unexpected gift during the first difficult months of pregnancy while standing more fully on the earth. For the first time I could hear the spirit voices of the trees and other creatures that I had been saying hello to my whole life! My first experience of that came from a tree that I had greeted with love and appreciation when I first moved to that house. Out of the blue I saw a clear light stream from this maple, which was so huge that it would have taken three of me to reach around it, and I heard it call my name. Feeling delightfully surprised, I asked how it knew my name! It reminded me how I had greeted it those years before! Wow, I had completely forgotten! From then on I was blessed to be able to communicate with the natural world and all its forms; which continues to bring me great joy and amazing teachings.
What an awakening for me to recognize how much I had missed by living with my head in the clouds; though at the time that focus was necessary for maintaining my peace of mind. I still visit that sky space deliberately to enjoy the pleasure of that perspective, but living there all the time was limiting and disempowering for me. Sometimes life has to give us a shove in the right direction to make us change, and becoming a mother did that for me. I have never regretted it!
I am learning to balance the earthly experience with the higher spiritual perspective, and through that am becoming more whole and strong each day. I also continue to discover new potentials within myself as life helps me to grow by bringing gifts and challenges my way. I will always be grateful for the perspective of trees and sky that kept my heart open, and carried me through times in my life when I wasn’t strong enough to live fully on the planet.
When I am walking in one of our beautiful Ann Arbor parks, I am puzzled by people who take the time to walk in nature but spend it looking down at their feet. I want to say to them, “Look up, see the beauty that surrounds you, and remember that all the little things which bother you are just a speck of dust on the amazing brilliance of nature and life.” Things can get very stressful and negative at times, but it helps if we keep the perspective that each of us is a part of the eternal. Our present life is just the blink of an eye in our unending and unfolding experience; even the soul of our planet has and will be reborn, over and over, to realize her full potential as an eternal Being. Whatever seems unbearable now will eventually be resolved into something even more splendid than we have known in our past.
Looking up at the trees and the sky can open us to feel a part of that greater good that is always unfolding through life. Then, when our focus returns to the surface of the planet, we will have a more open, trusting and loving heart and mind. The world needs that from us!