Posted by: clearspaces60 | June 1, 2016

Are You Recognizing Joy?

“They Have Seafood Crepes?”  The delight in her voice shifted the energy at our table.  Her husband rolled his eyes but his smile let us know he enjoyed her spontaneity.  I was the last of the four to order and had ordered the seafood crepes.  This woman’s question and subsequent changing of her lunch order transformed my recognition of Joy in an instant.

I had been contemplating what I truly wanted in my life for several months before this life altering lunch.  Looking around my life, I realized that I was missing Joy on a regular basis.  I decided to “work” on that by doing what needed to be done, making sure that everyone else in my family had what they needed first.  Volunteering at my son’s school and at our church.  Looking for a job and working nearly full-time trying to get our mortgage interest rate reduced through the never-ending loan modification process.  This had resulted in foreclosure paperwork being delivered to our home because the laws had not gone into effect to prevent the left hand from knowing what the right hand was doing at our bank. I was exhausted but I knew that once my ducks were in a row Joy would be just around the corner.

Then I had the opportunity to attend a week-long conference in San Diego, something I had not done since long before I was married and had a child and step-children.  The entire week had been a complete departure for me in more ways than one.  Having lunch with these three friends, who I now consider close dear friends, was a game changer.  This woman beamed Joy.  She did not work for it or earn it. There was no contemplating if she deserved it or was worthy of it.  Why was I working so hard to allow Joy into my life?  Why was I putting off experiencing it until a long list of requirements was met? How could finding out that seafood crepes were on the menu be my new definition of Joy?  She effortlessly created the moment.  That was it!  Joy was everywhere around me if I would only look for it and let it into my life.

Once I let it in, it was everywhere. When my awareness shifted so did everything else.  There was no waiting, learning, earning, worthiness or deserving required.  I became conscious of creating moments of Joy in bigger and smaller ways.  In a cup of coffee, a paid bill, a few minutes in prayer or meditation, my husband and I going to lunch or dinner without the kids, being with the kids and hearing them laugh, a moment alone in our home, reorganizing a junk drawer, planning a trip, talking to a friend on the phone uninterrupted, reading a book or taking the time to write.  Whenever I am frustrated or stuck and things appear chaotic and creating Joy feels futile, I remember my friend’s beaming face and ask myself, “What are my seafood crepes?”

P.S. I found this quote a few hours after I posted. I love this!!  “No matter what causes it, whenever a little bubble of joy appears in your invisible sea of consciousness, take hold of it, and keep expanding it.  Meditate on it and it will grow larger.” – Paramahansa Yogananda

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