I have recently started reading a great magazine called "Spirituality and Health" and they had this challenge in their current issue...ten things I could do right now to practice gratitude. I gave it a whirl

1. Write down one thing that has made you grateful to be alive today:

enjoying a quiet morning with a cup of coffee,  my hubby, and Baby Kitty...all of us watching the birds in our yard as they get ready for winter. I was grateful for my beautiful home, little family of boy+girl+kitties=love, and for the nature that surrounded me.

2. Off the top of your head, write down 10 things that you would say are sacred to you

  1. My relationship with Ryan
  2. My cats
  3. spending time alone
  4. bubble baths
  5. books
  6. nature
  7. temples of all faiths
  8. family memories
  9. horses
  10. yoga/meditation
3. Think of someone who has hurt you or betrayed you, and make a commitment to work on forgiving him or her
I don't think I am at a place in my spiritual journey were I can "forgive" quite yet, but I can try to understand my mother and why she was the way she was

4. Read a short piece from any of the world's spiritual traditions and let it inspire you for the day

There are different wells within your heart.
Some fill with each good rain,
Others are far too deep for that.

In one well
You have just a few precious cups of water,
That "love" is literally something of yourself,
It can grow as slow as a diamond
If it is lost.

Your love
Should never be offered to the mouth of a
Only to someone
Who has the valor and daring
To cut pieces of their soul off with a knife
Then weave them into a blanket
To protect you.

There are different wells within us.
Some fill with each good rain,
Others are far, far too deep
For that.

(Hafiz, a Sufi poet)

5. Create a spontaneous prayer, right now!
Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

6. Make a commitment to a spiritual practice, even a simple daily meditation:
I am going to re-instate my yoga alter and every day acknowledge the presence of a higher power...whether I sit there and meditate for 20 minutes or I simply light a candle and offer a quick prayer to the cosmos for guidance.

7. Who can you call right now who is grieving, or ill, stressed or unemployed that could use your love? How can you make their burden easier?
Well I can't do it "right now" but soon I need to call Jenny, I know she needs some sister chats...and I have been bad at keeping up with them. When my anxiety is bad, like it currently is phones and me don't always work well together...and I can fall out of touch easily.

8. Take animal products out of the equation for one entire day, what sort of meals can you come up with?
Well every Monday is meatless monday in my household, so that is no problem! Last week was a vegan smoothie for breakfast, veggie bean/tofu chilli for lunch, and veggie japanese curry for dinner!

9.Think of a simple way you can give back to the community (any community), and a way to get your friends involved

I need to write a letter to my sponsor child in Burkina Faso, I still have yet to do that and I have been sponsoring her and her village for over a year! I promise to send her a package and I encourage my friends to contribute! Maybe we can create a unique care package for this little girl full of womanly love and advice from Canada?!? Who is with me?

10.Make a commitment today to give back to a charity, what will you choose?
LOL! See above! :)
I had someone say something to me the other day that really stuck with me. They asked me if I was satisfied with my career, if I felt I was doing something to help others, to change the world. I asked them where such a statement came from...apparently they assumed that once I was done school I would go on to change the world, help people, make a difference. And I guess they don't view my current job as doing that? (For the record, I help people all day long! I may not be picketing in the streets...I am helping on a more microlevel now)

 Thing is, when I was in school, I did have lofty goals of changing the world. I permanently wore a pair of rose colored glasses and was preparing to be a social worker, or counselor, or intake worker at a shelter. I was going to charge forward into the world, and I was going to make some changes! I was going to help people! I was going to make a difference. All of that hard work and activism came at a very high cost though. Me. I lost me, well really I had never found me....but that is a whole other topic.

I have spent so many years of my life fighting for other people, fighting to ensure their happiness, secure their rights, protect them from harm. And honestly last year, I burnt out. I was suddenly so very tired. All I wanted to do was lie down and never get back up. Sleep for ever and a day. I didnt care anymore, I was numb, used up, and exhausted. I spent a lot of time confused and angry, unable o figure out what was wrong with me.

A few weeks ago I figured out what it was. now was the time for Kami. Now was the time to fight for me, to protect me, secure my happiness. How can I possibly help other people if I have never properly dealt with my own baggage? My own childhood trauma? My own insecurity and self esteem issues? Now is the time for Kami. By changing my negative self perceptions into positive ones, I AM changing the world...one thought at a time.

I firmly believe that we can all change the world if we mearly change our thoughts and attitudes. Every time you smile at a stranger, offer un-asked for love and kindness you are touching that persons soul with love. And love is the most healing power of all. But, when you dont love yourself....that is far easier said then done.

So before I embark on any more campaigns, fight for any more causes, I need to finish this journey I have started out on. I am on a crusade to find myself, no matter how long it takes.