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Whole Wellness

Oh, I’m excited. Like, this venti coffee isn’t giving me the shakes…it’s my excitement. It’s also probably the venti coffee.

There’s been a lot of changes here on Katie-Did. This has been my life-space for years…5 years actually.

But that’s all about to change this winter….

I announced earlier that, soon and very soon, Dwell: Practicing Whole Wellness will be more than a Facebook page. I am thankful for His provision of all the right people and all the best resources along the way to make this dream for His glory into a reality for His namesake.

This week I’m packing my bags, oils, and huge notebook and heading out for the Influence Conference.

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I couldn’t be more excited about this. I can’t wait to share more about what Dwell is and will be. But really, we’ll learn together when the journey officially begins.

What will Dwell be like?

There will be YouTube videos, webinars, yoga flows, devotions, worship playlists, art downloads, devotionals, design tips and resources for your own blog and business, my own journaling, & essential oil information as we all seek together how to be wholly well in Him. If you live in the area, I will be reaching with this ministry physically into the community. Much of this will be free, offered in love to the women growing alongside me. While I’ll provide information, I won’t be telling you to eat or do anything…I’m not incredibly wise or know particularly more than anyone else, but I want to change the subject–to begin a discussion in our hearts and in our homes about our focus, intention and….above all….Jesus.

We will leave our places & groups where we live in the extremes of dieting, theology and opinions because we will see that there’s no one else around us who is different than us. We will jump from this space into the middle and ride down the river of life TOGETHER, with our very different worship, very different health habits, and very different dinner plates….all of us with Jesus.

We’ll learn from each other.

We’ll realize that we’re not right about everything.

We’ll lay down our opinions.

We’ll love.

It will be well with our souls.

It will be a resting and strengthening space until you’re ready for your own launch into healthful, balanced living with Jesus. That may mean you choose veganism, paleo, essential oils, or decide you just can’t move yet. It’s where all of the information, and ideas come into a pool of togetherness and we can sort of dump all that we’ve been sifting and turn our eyes to Jesus….and listen to where He wishes us to go. Sometimes not moving is exactly what you should be doing. And sometimes you need to go….like right now.

I won’t write all the time…I’ve got some beautiful ladies who have much to offer…more than I have to give.

I am looking SO forward to this conference as I will learn how to do all of this in a way that is most glorifying to Him and most effective, understandable, and applicable to you, friends.

Can’t wait to share more! Until then, friends…..

…may we be seekers of balance.

~Katie-Did

P.S. – My website developer is kind of cringing that I’m going to this since we’ve pretty much got the website done and I’m 99% sure I’ll change it after I gain armloads of information and ideas at the conference. Sorry in advance! You’re amazing!

Here we go. Because I don’t know how to start (who really does?), I’m going to dive right in.

Last summer, I weighed 100 pounds. I ate very, very healthy. Only whole foods, fruits and veggies, no sugar, minimal grains. I even found a “plan” that made me even skinnier. At first I was just consuming green smoothies with one paleo meal a day, but then I found this plan. So I dove in prepared to follow the militant restrictions. I kept my fats and carbs away from one another and spaced my meals every 3 hours like instructed. I never ate carrots (frowned on for carbs), and replaced my potatoes with radishes. I ate only sweet potatoes, on rare occasion and when I did…would watch my carbs the rest of the day.

I was eating very healthy foods.

But this is what I looked like.

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Meet me with grace here, in this post. I have tears as I post these pictures because, until just a few weeks ago, I longingly have gone back to these pictures. I’ve stood in front of the mirror and situated myself in these exact positions to see how close I am to this size. I’ve cried over these pictures. I’ve shut the computer after viewing these pictures and let my hands travel down to my thighs to feel how much bigger they are now.

I was a disordered eater, a disordered thinker and a disordered feeler. I was completely in disarray. But God is not a God of chaos, and because this space was truly chaotic, it meant I had given Him no invitation into this space.

Sometimes disordered eating doesn’t necessarily come in the form of starvation or over-eating….but in the form of mental/spiritual starvation and over-thinking. I found that I can eat all the whole and healthy foods that I want…but if I’m not eating them with the same freedom that I was given at the cross, i was not truly feeding my body. Nor was I truly grateful. I can worship in my eating, and should…but only when it’s done with the same abandon and freedom that I was given.

My path for healing didn’t begin until I began to feed myself. Not just eat.

I gave my big, heavy book about “the plan” away and sat down to refocus. Everything in my diet was good, whole, and healthy. Everything was from the earth and natural. I was supposed to have the best immune system in the WORLD according to my diet but I was sick almost every week. My adrenals were tanked. My organs weren’t even fully functioning.

What was missing?

I was eating whole healthy foods….but my whole self was starving.

The reason I write this post? Because in this fire of self-hatred….Dwell:Practicing Whole Wellness was forged. God led me to a Christian yoga instructor and as I began training I had never felt so thin….I felt spiritually thin. I felt emotionally thin. I felt mentally frail. My body wasn’t thin solely because of my lack of eating; my body was thin because I have learned that what I eat or don’t eat directly reflects what I’m feeding my heart, mind and soul–my heart was starved. 

So I made a commitment, starting at Lent. I was going to gain unbridled, unmeasured, un-time-intervaled weight. Not physical weight…spiritual weight. I decided it was time to spend all the tv time, the journaling & food journaling time (where I just poured out the frailties of my slender little heart), and my reading time ALL in the Word. I deleted my excel sheets of “the plan,” and all the complicated baking recipes. I hid the Facebook group from my feed. I poured myself onto the mat and the postures of my body- the sticky places- truly reflected the postures of my heart. I gave myself no spiritual restrictions and everything I didn’t understand I decided to go to the brave spaces, even the “non-theological” spaces for answers. Wherever I found Jesus…is where I went. I stopped looking at everything through the lens of how it effect me, and instead looked through the lens of Jesus….what does every situation and every word in the Bible say about HIM? Not about me. I embraced freedom and ate His Word in big, hungry bites. And the more I ate, the more hungry I realized I was. I didn’t even know it….but I was completely malnourished and starving in my soul space. I went through a beautiful process of learning my blessed inheritance and position as a daughter of the KING.

And then, something CRAZY happened: I gained weight. I gained probably 15-18 pounds. In 9 weeks of training. The crazier thing? I hadn’t realized it. That’s peace that passes all understanding…when I don’t notice my weight changing. That’s eyes glued to Jesus not my thighs. How did this weight gain happen? I truly lived. I had begun eating the cookies with the boys when we baked them together. Little Small Fry kissed the chocolate off of my cheek. Strawberries were on sale, and, one day when Nugget couldn’t fall asleep during nap time, we snuck into the kitchen and snacked on them together. He told me about how he wanted to be a chef that was also a fireman when he grew up and suddenly we realized that we’d eaten almost the whole container. I sat on the hood of the car with my hubs and dug into a crate of fresh peaches brought back from Michigan. We talked about everything from grace to Small Fry’s hilarious booty shake dance. When I got to retreat at the end of my training the girls would laugh at my full-to-the-brim plate. But I was really truly that hungry. I was so, so, hungry. If only you girls could have seen what my plate would have looked like before. You know–maybe it wouldn’t have looked that different as I ate the same healthy foods before. The foods I ate then and eat now didn’t change that much…but my heart when I ate them, and HOW I ate them….that transformed. So I take that back. If only you girls could have seen the girl holding the plate before. 

Here’s one of the most beautiful parts of my weight gain: it stopped. I haven’t budged since then. When God brought me back to balance…He replaced what I had lost. All of my broken things, and empty spaces were filled and I was balanced again. My body needed those extra 18 pounds to be at my healthy weight and Jesus gave them back to me. It’s where my body’s healthy balance is. He does this with us. He gives back what we’ve lost…what we’ve thrown out…what we’ve rejected because it’s hurt us in the past. He puts the pieces back into the confusing puzzle of our hearts and suddenly we see the picture we forgot that we made when we’re wholly living.

This is me now…in the same spot as last year. 18 pounds and 1 million inches of grace and mercy later….

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Where I realized that I am not well when I’m eating perfectly with portioned ratios. I am not well when I’m exercising 60 minutes a day. I’m not well when I’m practicing yoga 5 times a week. I’m not well when I achieve a handstand.

I am only well when it is well with my soul.

Now I’m not the girl afraid to do anything. I go SUP boarding.

And I do crazy things…things that could hurt me & heal me.

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IMG_9071I laugh. I laugh so much…with the one that I love.

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And I truly….for the first time, FEEL that love. I accept it.

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When I forget…when my heart is screaming lies and my mind is overwhelmed, not knowing how to process, I just go upside down, knowing that I, without Jesus, am disordered. He sets me right when I don’t lean on my own understanding, let go, and invert myself…bowing to His plan.

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I’m just not skinny anymore. I am strong.

T53A8807tI will always struggled with disordered thinking and wanting to eat with disorder as well. But I do not have to BE disordered.

Because I’m free.

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So, my heart for you, friends is that when we look at ourselves, we don’t see the overweight, the underweight, because we know it’s ALL under the blood.  This means that, when we give our hearts over to Him and let Him feed THAT space you will find yourself in the best place for your body as well as your life. He will guide you…and when it’s time, you will shed what needs to be shed, and He will fill what needs to be filled. He restores our souls and restores balance. That’s HIs character.

I have learned that I should never pick up the fork without picking up the cross. Picking up His grace. Picking up His mercy.

Friends, my prayer for you today is that you have joy and have it more abundantly. That you eat peaches, carrots, onions, and brownies. That balance is found in your healing. That freedom is found in your faithfulness to just try.

That you know that He desires to make it WHOLLY well with your soul.

Feed friends….feed on His grace, feed on His fruit of the spirit, and then….feed on the fruit of the earth.

All of my love,

~Kate

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**DISCLAIMER: This post will discuss the application of Thieves Blend Essential Oil on children. Essential Oils are safely applied to children frequently and effectively. However, Thieves blend is a more powerful blend and you may wish to consult your pediatrician before applying any substances to their bodies. We have never had any issues with our use of essential oils, but I do not know the medical history of your child and I am not writing to treat or diagnose your child. Thanks!**

Hey Friends! Welcome to the 2nd post in our month long series about Thieves Essential Oil!

Today, we’re going to talk about why we apply Thieves oil onto our skin, where we should apply it, and the best times of the day to apply.

Throughout this series, I will discuss numerous ways to experience the powerful effects of Thieves Essential Oil Blend. This will include topical applications, inhalation and cleaning. But today, we need to start at the beginning by simply discussion what topical application does and why we do it.

To understand more about why Thieves is a power house for our health and wellness, I encourage you to read the previous post. titled “What Is Thieves?” It will better explain how Thieves is simultaneously a powerful antiseptic, antibiotic, antibacterial, anti fungal, antiviral, and antioxidant all at the same time. Seriously, friends. Wow.

Why Do We Put Thieves Essential Oil Blend on Our Skin?

Applying essential oils is, quite frankly an art. It’s an art that all us oilers out there have developed over time by listening to our bodies and what they need. One thing that we all have learned is: our bodies love and need essential oils. By applying them to our skin in various locations, they have provided an aromatic experience and support to the various systems in our bodies. This has rastically assisted and supported our healing and healthful living.

Our skin is the largest organ in our body. It absorbs moisture and nutrients, and we know this by seeing the results from lotions, and hormonal creams. This is why you may have noticed a pretty major trend where women have been switching out their night creams and serums for natural products. It’s because they are concerned about chemicals and toxins that could enter their system.  This is a reasonable concern if we are to consider our skin as an organ that “ingests” what we put on it.

On that note, we can get a good idea why this knowledge can be put to powerful use when it comes to Thieves.

Where On Our Skin Should We Put Thieves?

There are many locations all over the body that are receptive and beneficial for oil application. But Thieves Blend is considered a “hot” oil. This means that it contains some essential oils that are considered a potential irritant to the skin. When applying oils that are potential irritants, it’s best to use a carrier oil, such as coconut oil. For me, I usually put a little on my fingertips, rub it into the place that I’m going to apply, and then follow with Thieves oil.

FEET: The feet are the best place to put most essential oils. By checking out the reflexology chart below, you can get a better idea where to rub Thieves and all of your other oils into the feet. I will explain the application process below, and, if you’re a visual learner I also recommend watching this video explaining both the foot and spinal method of oil application .

  1. Optional: If using a carrier oil to dilute (preferred method for children), rub that oil into the feet. I recommend coconut oil or a basic unscented massage oil.
  2. Without touching the applicator top of the bottle, let desired number of drops (typically 1-3) fall into the palm of the hand.
  3. Using the fingertips of the opposite hand, swirl the oils in the palm, clockwise, 2-3 times.
  4. Take those fingers and spread the oil on the sole of the foot. If you choose to watch the video, you can take this a step further by applicating on the arch of the foot with a specific method you’ll see in the video.
  5. Use what’s left on your palm and rub the rest of the foot, or, if it’s well covered, use that oil to begin on the sole of the other foot. Make sure that the entire sole of the foot, toes and all, is well rubbed and covered.
  6. Refer to the reflexology chart to decide where to give an extra rub. (I always do the arches as that’s the spinal area of the foot). You can YouTube “Rain Drop Method” to see the correct technique on rubbing those reflex points.

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If your child jumps up right after you apply the oils, or you have to run and get the phone, don’t worry about all the oils coming off. They have already entered your bloodstream and are ready to go!! 🙂

SPINE: The only other area where I typically apply a “hot oil” like Thieves is the spine. But I use a carrier oil before I apply. I then do the rain drop technique.

  1. Apply your carrier oil to the back on and around the spine (always use caution when working around the spine. Do not apply any pressure to it, and work around it)
  2. Hover your bottle over the spine and allow three drops to drip onto the spine in different spots along the length of it
  3. Using the backs of your finger nails, “feather stroke” up the spine in light feathering motion, barely touching the skin. Go three to four times up the spine. Then feather stroke out away from the spine. This feather stroking method can also be seen in the YouTube video recommended above.

When To Apply Thieves Essential Oil

Because this is a broad answer, I will give you the 3 times a day that are good open windows for our own application at home. I don’t do all three of these in one day, but one of these times a day is when I apply. NOTE: Use caution when applying Thieves to infants and children under the age of 10. 

  1. Before school. I usually get my kids in their carseats without shoes on and then I apply a carrier oil and Thieves to their bare feet. I go around to each kid and then by the time I come back to the first his feet are dry and ready for shoes. I then move around and get all their shoes on. (This is when I also apply Cedarwood to their brain stems and stress away to their wrists)
  2. After School. When they lay in bed for naps, I do a spinal and foot application. If your kids don’t nap, then sitting at lunch or snack is a great time because they’re sitting still and calm. You can do spinals with them sitting up as long as you are quick about it.
  3. Before Bed. When they lay in bed, I usually do all of their before-bed feet oils (currently it’s: Thieves, Valor, Frankincense & Raven) one at a time. Then I do Thieves on the spine.

**I also diffuse a combination of Thieves and Purification in their rooms at night.

Happy Tuesday & Happy Oiling, friends!!

~Katie

 

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I honestly feel my finding a successful skin care routine is the work of the Lord. The endless shelves and aisles of products have done their job of utterly frustrating me. I feel as if I have tried nearly every one and I have surprisingly found them all to be similar and comparable.

But I don’t want a clean face with taught ageless skin by feeding it chemicals or derivatives. I just don’t.

Fact: my skin is the largest organ in my body. It sends things into my blood stream the same as ingesting would and I just want to know (and this is weird) that I could eat everything I put on my face, and that my face is fully nourished in my skin “diet” as my body is in my eating diet.

So here’s a system I have developed, and I love it.  It will cost you only $30 a month. I’m serious. It not only keeps my face clean and hydrated (which is goal #1 and #2, yeah?), but it actually works to detox, remove impurities, and keeps my immune system up.

#1. “Thoroughly Clean Face Wash” by Desert Essence. This is a water/essential oil based face wash that does double duty. It cleanses my face with tea tree (melaluca) oil. I checked with this company and their tea tree is therapeutic grade and protected from sunlight with it’s dark BPA free bottle. It bubbles just a little so you know it’s working and smells like tea tree heaven. Tea Tree oil is a power house for removing impurities and killing just about any bad thing in it’s path. I’m thrilled at the fact that any germs or bacteria that are detoxing through my face are flushed away at this moment. The tea tree penetrates my skin with the hot water, entering my blood stream for a nice immune/detox inducing boost in the morning! You can buy it here for $6.97. Mine lasts two months, so that’s $3/per month for face wash. **Note: if you have a face wash that you absolutely love but want Tea Tree oil in it, Young Living has a pure product. Add 1-2 drops to the soap in your palm and wash your face. Close your eyes tight 🙂 Comment below to get some!

#2. Norwex Body Cloths. Oh, friends, I can’t speak highly enough of Norwex. I really can’t. I use their EnviroCloths to clean my house every single day, all day. Because of the Silver (the same as Colloidal Silver) woven in the threads, I am cleaning and sterilizing just by wiping the surfaces. I digress. I absolutely LOVE following up my face wash with my Norwex body cloth. It’s removing any impurities that the soap missed, and further encouraging the detox process. Plus, because of the rougher mirofiber surface it’s exfoliating the heck out of my face. No dead skin after a light scrub with that. These come in a 3 Pack for $20. But if you care for them properly they’ll last you 3 years. That’s $.50 a day.

#3 KIT Naturals Orange Dream Cream. Honestly, I have to contain myself. I just get so darn excited about all of these products. Ok. KIT Naturals. I can’t even begin to say how amazing these ladies are. Products are freshly compounded when ordered, or drawn from a very low stock (to keep ingredients fresh). Products containing essential oils are kept in dark containers to preserve them. They also have an Ultimate Relief cream that is a MIRACLE WORKER for my children’s rashes and ouches. But this dream cream…well first I love that my face smells like a creamsicle. That’s kind of fun. But second, orange essential oil is absolutely fantastic for lifting the spirits, flushing the system of impurities and boosting immunity. So by Step #3, we are super clean, friends. This cream also prevents signs of aging, firms skin and irons out wrinkles…because nature is awesome. It’s heavy when it goes on, and you may feel nervous because it looks so greasy. But here’s the awesome part: because every single thing in this little jar is edible, and fresh from the earth, your skin leaves nothing behind…within 15 minutes it’s slurped it all up. Your skin ADORES this stuff, and the women who make it actually call it “gourmet skin food.” They aren’t kidding. You don’t have to avoid your eyes, or your lips, and I slather it all over those places to get extra moisture. I also go down my throat too. A little goes a long way, though, and this one pot lasts me about 3 months. So, at $14 per jar, that’s $5 a month. You can check out their site and order your product here. 

#4 Acure Argan Oil. They’ve called it “liquid gold,” for centuries and there is a reason. Organic Argan Oil is rich in Vitamin E, Essential Fatty Acids, and Proteins. It fights lines, repairs imperfections, and minimize scars & stretch marks. It also works to restore texture, elasticity and tone. I only do this at night because it stays a little oily on my skin longer than what’s convenient. But I call it my “skin vitamins.” I will put one, to two drops on my hand and dab this around my eyes, on my forehead, and around my mouth. I’ll then slide it down my throat and around my ears. It has seriously changed the look and tone of my skin. I don’t go a day without following up my moisturizer with it. You can order it here. This bottle runs at $15. Because you use it 1-2 drops at a time it will take you FOREVER to use it up. $5 a month is what it adds up to.

#5 Frankincense Essential Oil. Ok. I want to first say, right up front, that purchasing pure quality, therapeutic grade Frankincense will run you $95 without wholesale membership. It’s a doozy. I will also say this: I have been so grateful for having this oil in my home. For the face routine, I finish my face washing with 1-2 drops rubbed lightly onto the fine lined places on my skin. It has strange miracle working properties on wrinkles. But we diffuse it, put it on our feet or ingest it in capsules when we’re sick, wear it for confidence, etc. My one bottle, a year later is still hanging around and it’s about 1/2 down. The only thing that I use Frankincense for EVERY DAY is face toning. Otherwise it stays in the cabinets on an as-needed basis. So because ours will last about 2 years, most likely, making it $4 a month.

So there you have it friends! If you have any questions about the oils mentioned or the products, comment below and I’ll get to them as soon as I can 🙂

Happy Friday!

~Kate

 

**All archived posts are still on lockdown as we break things down for the new site. All new posts will be visible and available here for now! Enjoy, friends…

In my home, we fight sometimes, and in my home, I fail in the midst of this. We fight against each other, for each other and with each other. I fight for my son, and here I write, for the first time about a real struggle in our home, and it’s not an easy space to enter.

My eldest son struggles with mild sensory processing disorder and his main symptom lies in an intense concern and precision over his environment. Today we were on a bike ride, and a few of his leaves that he had collected fell from his bike basket. He stopped, in the middle of the road, cars flying around him to pick them all up. I was waiting for traffic to allow me to get to him, flagging cars, and yelling at him to leave them.

But when life happens, and chips away at his world, his sensory blinders go up and all he has is the broken bits of perfection in his hands. He melts away from us, a pool of intention to fix the pieces. And here he was–blinders up–in the middle of the road. I finally physically drug him and his bike and headed toward the side of the road. But his backpack, strategically hung on his handlebars, came loose, falling to the ground. He collapsed, hunched over his bag and ripped it open beginning to arrange and rearrange all of the pieces inside. The cars–who were preparing to finally move again, had to halt once more.

My son flinched at every honk, his hands moving faster and more frantic within his bag. I lurched him and his things to the side. He looked up at me, and his face completely changed to something I couldn’t quite recognize. “I’M SORRY!!!! I BREAK YOUR HEART!!!” He shrieked.

That’s when I realized I was crying.

I opened my mouth to respond when I heard a little bell chiming at the top of the street. My 3 year old, unaware of the situation, had continued zipping up the road toward home. I yelled for him to come back but he couldn’t hear me, though so I took off running after him.

I don’t know what was louder: the sound of my eldest son’s loud weeping of abandonment in my ears, or the shatter of his heart in my own.

This was probably the hardest piece I’ve ever written. I never write about this part of my eldest’s life, not even in my journals. My inability to fix or sometimes prevent the constant destruction of his heart, and hopes aches in a space I didn’t know existed inside of me…and sometimes I can’t speak it. Like it won’t come into existence.

My hands have never felt so small, and so incapable. Because of the way his world appears to him, I do not ever love enough for him to feel loved completely. This is the breaking of that aching space.

But here, friends…here is where the balm comes into my soul. And it’s in the action of love. It’s in the training that I’ve received and the Word that I cling to.

No matter what happens in our day…be it bike rides or abandonment. This is where we are, every night, an hour before bedtime.

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 I turn on the essential oil diffuser. Tonight I wished that I had “Forgive” oil blend. But I went with Cedarwood and Lavendar. To calm and to heal.

I bring the towel into the room and my boys instantly remove their socks and lift their little legs for me to place the towel under their feet.

I take great care to bring the oils and massage oil on a little tray over to them, along with a damp Norwex rag.

And then…I wash their feet.

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They are dirty, and wear the remains of the day. I wash them clean.

I pump massage oil into my hands and work their calves, toes and arches. They tell me to avoid scratches and bruises, and I find out about places they’d been and trees they climbed that I must have missed. Answering emails, or cleaning.

They tell me where it feels good, and I press into those spaces.

Then I get the Thieves blend. I place one drop in my hand and do one foot at a time. Thieves cleanses, restores, removes impurities and detoxifies. We’re removing the bad, the sinful, the sarcastic, the slanderous, the sullen, and the sorrowfuls.

And I’m saying that I’m sorry.

And I’m saying that this, boys, is how I really feel about you. If I haven’t shown it today…I’m showing it now. I haven’t been an active part in your healing process, your coping process. I’ve aided in your stress, and I’ve even caused you hurt. Here I am, at your feet, moving in the action of loving you. Moving in the action of working with you not against you…with your healing, not aiding your hurting.

It’s an abrupt turn from the space we were in, from the path we were on, from where we would have ended our day. It’s a time that I’m grateful for…to assume the ultimate position of humility, gratitude, and love. The practice of oving my children is holy, humble work.

Truth I’ve learned: Being in the ministry of healing and wholeness, we yoga instructors spend a lot of time at people’s feet. We hold ourselves in positions of servitude, leading our friends into a space of healing and rest. I’m new to the field, and I haven’t taught a whole host of classes, and I haven’t any wisdom to give. But at the end of my first teaching session, shaking and exhausted from the complete emotional, physical and spiritual drain that I’d experienced, hands still resting on the student’s feet, I realized…this is holy, humble work.

Our lives are not separate compartments, insulated from one another…or at least they don’t have to be. We can remove those walls and allow it all to mix into a great pool of love and service within our giftedness and callings. But the breaking of the walls is the hardest part. It’s the part I’ve experienced…when my real has mixed with my reality.

Friends, this is my space today & everyday.

I am honored to work at your feet. For the rest of my days.

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