The first thought I had when that ultrasound tech didn’t want to tell me that I wasn’t pregnant anymore was:
I deserve this.
When I was laying on that table having a D&C I thought:
This is karma for being a shitty sister.
When Briggs was born two months early I thought:
You did this. Your constant worrying. You caused this. You nearly killed your baby.
The thinking bad thoughts started long before becoming a Mom – in truth, bad thoughts kept me from ever wanting to be a Mom for the majority of my life. I thought the stress of motherhood would swallow me. Even now with a six year-old, sometimes, I still think this way.
My thoughts can cause a great deal of pain.
They’ve caused me to overindulge and undervalue. To binge and starve. To tell lies. To avoid work. Cast blame. Perpetuate shame. They’ve thwarted potential, severed loving ties and robbed me (and likely so many others) of too much pure, healthy…fun.
Reframing my thoughts for good – to best serve me (first) and (then) all of those I’m blessed to connect with is a constant (sometimes rewarding, sometimes devastating) practice.
And then there are my prayers.
Fuck. My prayers.
I didn’t even know I had prayers until a few years ago, and even now – at best – I’m a clumsy prayer. Still feeling my way around to connect with my God (Or is it Goddess? Or is there even a difference?).
Doing it wrong though, still feels more right than not doing it all. So, even though it looks like yoga, or writing, or crying, or serving, or sharing, or listening, or breathing…for me, it’s praying. And, what I do know is that eventually the praying will further guide me to do (more, greater) good.
Thoughts and prayers are tough.
Especially when far too many simply say the words without engaging any of the power that these actions actually possess.
My thoughts tell me that thoughts matter a great deal. Filled with resentment, judgment, fear, defensiveness or competition, they propel destruction and devastation. Filled with love, compassion, forgiveness, understanding and collaboration, they ignite lasting positive change.
My prayers tell me that prayers are the intentions brought to every action. Every conversation. Every exchange and union. Every vote and every sentence. Every outrage and every silence.
What’s true for me, is that thoughts and prayers can’t be sent. The ones that truly serve must first be cultivated from within and then nurtured through persistent and intentional (loving, connective) action and involvement.
Think. Pray. Act. In that order. All the time. Especially when it’s hard.