veazey

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So far veazey has created 25 blog entries.

Distinguishing emotions, feelings in the body, thoughts & fears

2021-02-09T14:50:28+00:00

I want to share more about the unknowns that come with practicing yoga. A lot of people who practice can tell you that yoga is life-changing but would fall short in articulating all the ways it has changed their lives.

So, I’ve decided to share my experiences on this awareness journey just in case you, or someone you know, needs to hear this.

Yoga isn’t just gaining strength and flexibility, it’s gaining awareness of your strength and flexibility and deepening this awareness to touch as many arenas in your life as you please.

There is no “yoga for weight-loss” but yoga provides the space for your truth to be revealed. Time spent on your mat may reveal to you all of the obstacles in your way keeping you from weight-loss. What’s more valuable? A yoga class that causes a minuscule amount of weight-loss or a practice that enlightens you on your weight-loss journey? To each his own, but we all know that real change isn’t simple, we all know that habits are tough to quit, we all know that discipline is everything — but we just want the effing weight-loss yoga class because that sounds way easier. It’s not though, that’s just what you keep telling yourself. You know I’m not reeeeeally talking about weight-loss yoga, right?

Open your mind, open your mouth, and tell yourself a new story.

Faith is built by putting attention and intention into the good you experience then making time to let go of whatever might happen, making time to ride the wave of trust that arises from the intentional thoughts and actions you’ve been putting out there. What you put out there will bring back to you, like a magnet, more of the same.

For just a brief moment in your everyday schedule, make time to let go and let faith grow.

p.s. here’s the.brain.guy’s IG video

Distinguishing emotions, feelings in the body, thoughts & fears2021-02-09T14:50:28+00:00

the light

2021-01-05T17:52:06+00:00
January 11th, 2014
There’s a place in the world that many of us are familiar with but we haven’t all been. It’s cold, very cold, you have to wear many layers to survive there. It’s also very dark, there is no light at all from the sun. Many people here are in search of the light. The light that will show them the way and the light that will keep them warm. The people here know of light because they used to be able to see it. The people here know of warmth because they used to be able to feel it. But now, it is cold here and it is dark here and the search for light continues.
Most that are new to this place search far and wide, refusing to give up until they find what they are looking for. Many, however, have given up their own search for the light. Some have given up completely and say they no longer care about finding the light, while others, dream of the day when someone will show them the way to the light.
There were rumors that some did find the light but that they disappeared instantly after finding it. Without proof or certainty, many shared the stories of those who have found the light. They would call the people in these stories “hope”. And many would think to themselves, “Hope found the light, and so will I!”. For most, these stories are what kept them going.
One day, a young girl was out searching for the light by herself when her lantern burnt out. She couldn’t see a thing, not even her hand in front of her face. She was so afraid, she was lost, she couldn’t see and she panicked. She started running as fast as she could, scared for her life, desperately trying to find a light to show her the way. Running as fast as she could, suddenly, she tripped and went flying forward through the air. Before she hit the ground, it was like slow motion. The thought ran through her mind “what were you thinking running through the dark unable to see the ground?! now you’re flying through the air probably about to smack right into a tree!” And just then she hit something, but it wasn’t hard and it wasn’t a tree. It was a deep, cold, wet, puddle of mud. Once her momentum had come to a halt she was actually thankful for the mud. She isn’t hurt because it broke her fall but as she stood up afterward she felt the weight of the mud stuck to all of her clothes. It was heavy, and she was tired from running and getting herself all worked up.
She walked a few yards out of the mud before collapsing from exhaustion. She curled up into a ball on the ground. She was freezing. She was beyond tired. And she had no light, no fire and nothing to keep her warm. She had to get out of her clothes. They were soaked in the cold mud and weighed a ton. Layer by layer she began to peel off the clothes she had worn longer than she could remember. While she was unbuttoning the last layer, she thought to herself “I don’t even remember putting this on” and that’s when she saw something peeking through the crack where her shirt was unbuttoned. It was bright and made her squint to look at it. Her heart began to race, she was panicked but this wasn’t at all the same. She ripped off her shirt and a bright golden light shined within her chest. It was so bright she had to look away and that’s when she noticed….
The entire area around her was in her sight. She looked at the ground and saw piles of clothes, soaked in mud, surrounded by green grass. She hadn’t seen color in so long she forgot what it looked like. The grass was so vibrant green she couldn’t blink and she didn’t have to because the tears kept her big eyes wet. The gigantic puddle of mud was only a few feet away. The girl stood up scanning everything around her. It was a beautiful meadow with a shallow stream running through it — thus creating that huge mud puddle. She couldn’t take her eyes off of the scene, it was like seeing color and light for the first time.
Everything was so clear, as far as she could see. That’s when she noticed off in the distance a sparkle of light reflecting off something. The moment she saw that sparkle a bolt of energy shot from her head to her toes. After the shock, she focused her eyes on the object, it was the lantern. She had dropped it when she began to run from the terror of the dark. She thought “I won’t be needing that anymore…” And that’s when it hit her, she didn’t disappear, she was still standing in the exact same place. Letting her light lead the way, she ran as fast as she could but this time, she wasn’t in a panic, she knew exactly where she was going. She was off to share with everyone the secret of the light!
She kept on running until she heard a group of people talking and ran towards the voices. When she arrives, 3 men are sitting in a small circle huddled around a small fire trying to keep warm. As she approaches they don’t even notice her coming. As she’s right upon them they haven’t even noticed her arrival. So she says “Hey! Check this out! Can you see the light?!”. The men turn around startled, looking around in her direction but unable to lay eyes on her. One of the men yells “Is this some sort of joke?!” To which the girl responds, “No! I’m right here, can’t you see me?!” Startled again, at how close she is without their knowing one of them grumbles “Bugger off we don’t have time for this nonsense” and they all turn around to face the fire.
She doesn’t understand, she can see everything, her light is a hundred times brighter than their fire, what are they talking about?! Out of sheer curiosity, she finds a shirt at the bottom of her bag and puts it on. She says “So you mean to tell me you really can’t see me?”. Annoyed, the men turn around and are startled once again, but this time by the sight of the girl standing there towering over them. “Yea, yea so we can see ya, what do you want? We don’t have time for games.” The girl responds “I’ve come to share with you the secret of the light”. The men all laughed.  One of them laughed so hard he almost fell out of his seat. The girl exclaims “I’m serious! I know the secret! The light is underneath our clothes!” The men laughed even harder as if it were the funniest thing they had heard in a very long time. After at least a minute of them laughing in her face, one of them says “Little girl, you know nothing! If the light were underneath our clothes, we never would have put them on to begin with! Now go! Be gone with you we haven’t time for silly little girls with wild imaginations”.
The girl rushed away from the men with tears streaming down her face, she thought to herself “How is this possible? It’s not in my imagination! It’s as real as real can be! If they can’t see my light, how will I convince them where to look to find their own? Oh if only they would just trust me, believe in me, they would see I’m right!”.
As the girl sits in the middle of the meadow, in trance from the bright colorful beauty she wonders to herself “How can I get them to see the light?” and Zing! A bolt of energy passes through the girl again and she knows just what to do. She takes a small box out of her backpack that she used to carry her keepsakes. She takes out her things and puts them back in her pack. She sits back, palms facing up pushed together with the open box resting on them. She closes her eyes and looks for the source of the light inside her. She finds it buried deep within her chest surrounding her heart. She focuses all of her attention and all of her energy into expanding the light inside her chest. She can feel the warmth of the growing light emanating off her skin. She continues to focus on building this light up so that it has nowhere to go but out. The light gets so big and bright, it flushes down her arms into her palms and fingers. Her hands get brighter and brighter and the box begins to glow. The girl moves the rest of the energy in her arms down to per palms and into the box. The light silently seeps in just before she closes the lid of the box.
She brings the box back to the men and says “I have a gift for you. I know you don’t believe me but I’ve taken some of the light inside me and put it into this box for you.” Before she hands it over she pulls the box in close and says “What’s inside this box is a tiny piece of the whole. It won’t last long, but it will give you light and warmth to get you through, so use it wisely. I suggest waiting for a moment when you need it most. When you run out of light in your lantern, when it’s dark, and you’re cold, and you’re scared, and when you stop believing in hope, THEN open the box.” Two of the men laughed almost as hard as they laughed the time before. One of them choking out as he laughs “We don’t believe in ‘hope’ in the first place!” and continued laughing so hard he started to drool. But the one man, who almost fell out of his seat the last time they met, was staring at the box without blinking. Suddenly he shoots out his arm with his palm outstretched and says “Let’s have it then” and the girl placed the box in the man’s hand.
The girl says goodbye and leaves with a smirk. “He will see”, she says to herself as her smirk stretches from ear to ear. The two men that were laughing say to the one with the box “Don’t tell me you actually believe in that mumbo jumbo?!” To which the man replies, “No, of course not, I just like the box”. They all laugh as he stuffs the box away into his pack as they go on with their previous conversations.
Months pass and the men find themselves trudging through a storm. They are unable to keep their lanterns lit and unable to light them back up after they’ve gone out. It’s impossible to find shelter without light. One of the men collapses from exhaustion without the others knowing. Unable to hear each other over the loud sounds of the storm, they leave him behind.
As he lay on the ground, so weak he can barely move, without light, without warmth, without hope, he heard a ringing in his ear and out of nowhere he remembered the young girl’s face. He smiled with the thought of her, at first because of the laugh he had and second because he remembered he still had the box. The man thought to himself “If I”m going to die here, I might as well find out what’s really in the box”. He musters up the rest of his strength to get the box out of his pack. He cracks open the box and low and behold, he can see the light shining through the crack. When he goes to open it more, the box is stuck. He uses every bit of energy he has, straining to open the box. Veins popping out of his neck and forehead he keeps trying until he passes out there on the ground, with the cracked open box still in hand.
The man finally wakes back up by the burning sensation caused by the heat of the box in his palm. “The box is a heater!” the man exclaims as he rubs his hands together and cups them near the box. As some time passes, the man is sweating profusely and decides to peel back some layers. He removes, piece after piece until he was down to the last shirt. He can feel it’s soaked in sweat and decides he will take it off to let it dry. The second he gets the shirt off he is blinded by the most intense light he had ever seen! Shocked by the light he quickly puts his shirt back on and closes his eyes with his hands on his chest.  He thought to himself “I can see!” and he ripped the shirt back off him, standing up to get a look at the world around him.
The scene takes his breath away. Just before he almost passes out again he gasps for air, filling his lungs back up completely, followed by the greatest sigh of relief and more tears streaming down his face then ever had before. He could see. And the girl was right.
The man said out loud “If only I would’ve had faith in her…” and suddenly the small box flies open with the light inside exploding and fizzling out. He picked up the box and saw a tiny piece of paper inside folded up. He opened it up to find a message written in his own handwriting that read: “You did”.
the light2021-01-05T17:52:06+00:00

what if jesus was just a human?

2020-12-25T17:00:27+00:00

What if Jesus was just human?

First time I started asking this question I was a brand new yoga teacher at the bottom of the totem pole at this power Vinyasa yoga studio. They barely let me sub because I taught differently and it was never “enough“ to meet their expectations.

It was this exact week of the year and no other teacher was volunteering to teach on Christmas Eve. There’s only one class that day, so it’s generally full and I knew it was going to be. I was new, and I was not trusted to do what people would expect. I wanted to do this job so that I could blend in and start earning a better reputation.

Well… A tiger can’t change his stripes. It was the day before Christmas Eve and I was thinking what kind of message i could I begin the practice with. I’m not religious and my opinion is that Christmas is an altogether funny holiday sooo i really didn’t have anything to go off of.

I thought about the point of Christmas: to celebrate the birth of Jesus. Then I thought, OK well who is Jesus? He’s a human. He lived a long time ago. He thought differently than a lot of people. He was loving, compassionate and accepting. He was called to serve humankind. He was called to share what he experienced, what was true to him. He had no choice but to stand in the face of powerful opposition to deliver his messages. He was loved. He was hated. He was adored, but he was also feared. He stirred the pot. Stood firm on his own two feet. He did not fear death. He did not fear truth. His life is the story we share. His story is one possibility for a human life. His story is not so different from mine. His story is not so different from yours.

I realized that even though I did not find myself religious, or a believer in the god that was personified in the Bible, I believe in the power of one human when he is fully connected to the source of his consciousness. I believe there is some truth behind the outrageous stories of miracles. I also believe the stories have been elaborated upon to make sure they were heard and shared.

I believe one single person can impact millions without even needing social media to do it. I believe we are all faced with the hero’s journey and that Jesus‘s story was one possible outcome as we all face our own life-long path to freedom.

So, I had this thought about who Jesus was and I felt good about what i was thinking. I went in to teach this Christmas Eve class with this simple idea that Jesus was just a man—one possible man. I got everyone set up in child’s pose. I asked them if among the holiday chaos they remembered what this day is in celebration of. I explained how this day is to celebrate the birth of a human. And then I asked, what if Jesus was just a man and nothing more. What if it’s less important to worship him and more important to learn the power of one man’s story, one man’s existence, one man’s example.

Regardless of how clever I thought I was in my new understanding of who Jesus is, this room full of mostly Catholic, very Catholic, wealthy women did not see the beautiful image I had painted in my head prior to speaking those words at the beginning of their Christmas Eve yoga class.

I proceeded to explain how we sit on the same pedestal as Jesus because Jesus was just a man. That we have the same powers that he did. That he is not more special than we are, because he is our equal. He is no more magical, no more able or capable than we are right now. We should be celebrating ourselves!

In my mind, I’m blowing their minds with this new idea. In their mind, I am seriously insulting their faith. I said a few more things about creating power in your life and how this day should represent the impact of one possible human. Let him motivate us to live our own highest visions of what is possible. And ended with something about how dumb Santa and presents are as if we need an excuse for family get together‘s to connect and lift each other up.

How I am explaining it to you now, is nothing like the words that came out of my mouth that day. They were simpler, nondescript and incomplete. These people did not have the backstory full of exploration that went on in my head. All they had was one hot power Vinyasa class on this day and this was it.

We moved on from there. The rest of the class went ok. I didn’t feel like i proved a damn thing. And at the end, people just quietly left without saying a word to me.

Not long after class was over I received a call from the furious owner of the studio asking what the hell I had said to offend so many people. I said I talked about how Jesus was just a human and how we don’t have to put him on a pedestal because we can attain the same power in our lives to become his equal. She’s all “what?!” Our community is very serious about their faith. You can’t just go and say things like that, it’s offensive.” She knew it was an innocent fuck up, but needless to say she did not allow me to sub power for over a year after that 😆

Merry Christmas and don’t forget what tomorrow is really about — Santa and presents and eating like a glutton. See y’all on the other side.

what if jesus was just a human?2020-12-25T17:00:27+00:00

Searching For Love

2020-12-16T14:10:39+00:00

August 26, 2014

I don’t remember when it all started but I do remember in middle school, just wanting to be noticed. What is it about being noticed that has so much power? It’s like someone verifying your existence. But why do we need that verification? Perhaps in a sea of other preteens, I wished to be seen. I wished that me, my unique and weird self would be seen and loved. Now did I need that because I wasn’t getting a ton of attention at home? Or did I need that because all preteens need that? I don’t know, but that is the earliest memory I have of craving love.

After being noticed I wanted to be liked. I wanted someone to notice me, my unique self, and then I wanted them to like me. What a bitch it is to seek others approval, yet most everyone does it at some point. I started off needing my parents approval, then from my friends at school and then my teachers, counselors and even strangers. It’s so much easier when people like (or approve of) your words, your thoughts and your actions. If everyone likes and approves of you, who challenges you? Back then it felt like those who truly challenged me, didn’t like me, so I would stay clear of them. I only wanted to be liked, to be loved, I had no room for disapproval in my life.

Once I was liked by someone I wished to be accepted and understood. I wanted those who knew me to see it all, like it all, understood the way I tick and accept me exactly as I am. With my best girlfriends this was easy most of the time. Little girls growing up together, tend to think alike, be alike, even dress alike and act alike. All the rubbing off onto each other paves the way to be accepted and understood by these close friends. So i found love in the space between me and my friends.

Now that I had experienced what it was like to be seen, and liked, and understood, and accepted, i was exposed to the desire to have this in a partner. I don’t know why, but it was the thing to do. I don’t know where I got the idea (maybe from movies) or how in the world it became so powerful but my ideas of what love was were expanding, and I had yet to feel it this way, so naturally, the next step in experiencing this thing called love was to find a partner to experience it with.

This is when love got harder. Not only did I need to be noticed, liked understood and accepted, I had to notice, like, understand and accept someone else exactly as they are. This was so easy to do with my girlfriends. I could see their entire lives, I knew everything, making it so easy for us to understand each other’s words, thoughts and actions. But with someone new, you don’t really get to dive in the same way as with childhood friends. You have to start sharing your story but it’s scary to be so vulnerable with a new person. What if he doesn’t like this? Or understand that? Just the thought of not being accepted when I put myself out there brought in a hint of shame. How did that come to be? Why in THIS moment is it so important for THIS person to understand and accept me? I gave so much power to these moments and the outcome was always only one of two: we both put some stuff out there and were seen, liked, accepted and understood for a while or… something, somewhere in the process was not seen, not liked, not accepted or not understood so I’d quit putting my energy into it. Regardless of whichever way it went, none of these partnerships ever lasted very long but I never ceased to keep searching for a partner that I could have all these gifts with and fully surrender into.

I don’t know why this is such a common thing for so many people, women especially. To wish to seek and find “the” person that will fulfill us. At what point were we programmed to think that we aren’t full without this? What about the people who don’t search for this? Why do we think it’s sad if they always live alone, if they never have kids or a partner in their lives? Perhaps their lives are absent of this particular experience but there are many experiences I myself have not been through. Why does THIS one seem to weigh much more than other common desirable experiences. Growing up, I think the subject came up more than college or my future did. But why? As if heartache is needed to go on with my life, as if disappointment in others really inspires me to keep going, as if I can’t focus on other things until I have this thing.

Along the way, I’d have long moments in need of solitude. What I was looking for in others, I never found, and at times I’d feel that I was the only one who could truly show up for me and I honored that. But before too long, I’d always witness a beautiful partnership and choose to continue my search. This pattern went on for years with no partnership ever sticking for more than a few months at a time. I felt complicated, and misunderstood. I was so sick of missing my mark with all these tryouts so I gave up. I surrendered, and was no longer searching, in fact I was fed up with the thought of a partner all together. So of course, that’s when “he” walked into my life. He noticed me right away, he liked me from the start, he accepted my weirdness as it came up and he always tried his hardest to understand me. I noticed that he noticed, I liked him from the start, I accepted all the weird things about him and I always found a way to understand him. I was 25, and I was finally able to end the search and surrender into safe, secure, trustworthily contentment. Unconditional love. It was pure bliss. I was me, he was him, and it was perfect.

Because I had finally filled that hole that felt like a missing piece, I no longer felt like I was missing out on something that really mattered to me. So for years I rested in complete contentment, happiness and freedom to just be me. Everything that had happened in my life up until this point felt absolutely perfect. Confirming those programmed beliefs that heartache is a necessary experience, disappointment in others never stomped out my hope, and now that I have THIS thing, I can focus on other things. So, I found another hole to fill, another missing piece. This piece was my purpose (did I seriously need a partner before I could address something so fucking important?! I guess I did) and it was more than just MY purpose, it was OUR purpose. So I started posing questions out into the universe and began a new journey within my journey.

The answers I received while on my quest for purpose were irritating at first. “The answer is inside you”, “you already have the knowledge you need”, “look within”, “there’s nothing to search for, you already have it”. Like a broken record all of these answers rolling around in my head day in and day out. So I discovered ways to look within and that’s where I found the REAL hole. I hadn’t given myself me, my love, my energy, my power, my acceptance or my compassion, none of it… and it left a big gaping hole inside me. This hole was so much bigger than the missing partner hole, I think that maybe that was just a divot on the surface caused by the giant underground cave that was below. How is it that this so very important piece of myself has been overlooked for so long and NO ONE had ever taught me about it? How is this not important enough to teach in school?! I remember at the time knowing that I could have never come to this place in my life had I not had that amazing partner in my life. I knew that without him filling that space, I could have never seen these all too important things that need my attention below. Without him, I’d still be on the surface trying to fill the only hole I knew existed.

Right away, I started filling in the cave. I gave myself me, my time, my energy, and started listening to my heart. I gave myself love. I stopped judging myself so harshly and replaced the judgement with acceptance and compassion. Before long, it wasn’t a gaping hole anymore. The more time, energy, and self love, I put into the hole, the fuller it got. I started smashing so much into that hole that it started over flowing and even pushing the partner hole on the surface up and out of existence. Now, he wasn’t filling a hole anymore, he was sitting on top of where the hole used to be. He still noticed me, he still loved me, he still understood me and accepted every crazy part of me, but now, while I did still notice him, love him, accept him and understand him, I didn’t need a partner to fill that need for me anymore. I never really did but the illusion was there and I still believed in it until now.

That’s when I made the most difficult decision that I’ve ever made. I decided to leave my beautiful, perfect partner that noticed me, loved me with all of his heart, understood me and accepted all of me. So now, it’s just me and my (supposedly) whole self. I’m finding how lonely it can be as I realize how dependent I was on him to fill other little holes like my need for attention and approval. As time goes on, being alone is cultivating a sensitivity to things I haven’t been aware of in the past. I am able to see more of myself, I am able to put more faith in myself, and with all of this new awareness, I’m able to love even more of myself. I’ve replaced searching with seeing, seeking with creating, and I know now that, everything I need, really is, within me.

Now I see that love isn’t something to be found. If you seek it, you won’t find it. If you force it, you won’t have it. And if you curse it, you become hardened against it. Your love, isn’t in other people. Your love isn’t in things. Your love is deep within the depths of your soul and it doesn’t need a thing, except for you to “see” it.

I’ve realized I don’t need a partner as much as I need connections. Connections that integrate with all of me instead of filling in holes I haven’t filled myself. Connections that expand the surface area of my being, challenging me and supporting me as I grow bigger than I ever imagined I could be.

Searching For Love2020-12-16T14:10:39+00:00

pleasure, necessity, and convenience — in your mouth

2020-12-14T13:46:09+00:00

here you are. in this place, surrounded by these people, shopping at these stores, buying the things offered—living by way of the people that surround you and the things offered to you for survival.

some of the people and places offer the most pleasurable tastes and experiences. some offer what is absolutely necessary for survival, while some offer the “extras”. most offers are somewhere in the middle of pleasurable and necessary and so we choose.

every single day decisions are put in front of us based on what the people and places around us are offering. you can pick based on pleasure, you can pick based on necessity, or you can pick to find your own way.

convenience comes in both the pleasure-full and the necessary. challenge often arises when you do not choose the convenient way. not one is right or more right than any other, they are all just options to pick from.

pleasure pleases you. pleasure leaves a smile on your face and some feel-good chemicals in your brain. it’s delightful, it’s intoxicating, and it leaves you wanting more.

necessity is need fulfilling. to get from here to there and have the experience i am aiming for, it is necessary for me to have this thing. whether or not it’s actually necessary for you to get from here to there is a different thing altogether, but ultimately, this thing is necessary for my survival, for my growth, or for my pleasure (that word “pleasure” again).

the reason i threw pleasure in at the end of necessity is that the way we live our lives is soft. most everything is unnecessary but because we want our lives to include it, it becomes necessary.

food is one of the foundations for survival, a truly necessary piece of life. food for pleasure can bring on ecstasy. food for necessity can bring on illness. but food for pleasure can also bring on illness, while food for necessity can strengthen vital health.

if you want food for pleasure, you can have it. if you want food for necessity, you can have it. if you want food for convenience and pleasure, you can have it. if you want food for it’s essential nutrients, and necessity, you can have it. you can even have essential nutrients, necessity, AND pleasure, you just have to open your mind and your schedule (because you need time to pay more attention).

two major differences between choosing the live, nutrient-rich foods that come from the Earth and the convenient processed foods that come from most store shelves are:

1. the amount of time it takes you to prepare your food
2. the number of hands in the process of getting the food from it’s origin to your mouth

it’s easy to get you to choose something that is fast and convenient but to get you to choose it knowing it ain’t natural and there were countless hands in the process of creating it, they distract you by turnin the pleasure experience way-the-cuss up.

mass food manufacturers study, in-depth, the pleasure response of their food. they make sure they push as many pleasure buttons as possible. mass food manufacturers have so much money, they can afford to figure out how to produce more and more pleasure, no matter the price.

in mass food manufacturing, often times the cost, or the price is the sacrifice of integrity. integrity meaning: remaining human in the process. keeping in mind the impact of food ingredients on health. they know what is harmful because someone did a study to tell them this much of this thing is harmful. but no one did a study on trace amounts, sooooo trace amounts are ok—a bunch of shit that isn’t human friendly is put into all food because if you make it a small enough amount, it will fly…

the shit they put in tap water is poison. same with the shit they spray on plants and feed livestock.

of course, there are exceptions, there are many people/businesses around the globe changing the way they do things to make consciousness more of a priority. very few companies in the grand scheme leave out the harmful shit as well as change processes to limit the amount of waste they put out. these are the companies and products i support, but at the end of the day i’m always looking for fewer hands, fewer ingredients and fewer words i can’t pronounce or define.

it seems to me, because we insist on doing more, having more and fitting more into our days, the convenience of mass food production isn’t changing anytime soon. foods are actually coming so prepared, the end consumer barely has any work to do other than using their hands to open the package.

because convenient products will always exist, it’s up to each of us individually to make our choices: ‘food from the earth’ or ‘food from a box’. if you can’t spare the time to think about what you’re going to be eating later, then you are a slave to convenience. if you include thoughts about preparation necessary for your upcoming meals throughout your day, then ‘food from the Earth’ isn’t so cumbersome to prepare.

conscious awareness of ourselves provides the time needed to make conscious choices about food. convenience provides all the food you want or need without having to think a lick. it takes time to develop conscious awareness within yourself. it takes time spent alone listening, communing with breath and body. it takes love and appreciation for yourself enough to give yourself the time for this practice. convenience requires nothing from you except—lack of time and lack of conscious awareness.

life can be totally fun when you’re asleep and living the convenient life, but life is enriched 10 fold when you are consciously aware and can see beyond the surface to the depths of your existence in this world.

this human you’ve been gifted to care for is 100% your responsibility. you can choose to rise up and assume accountability for it or, you can let the food industry shove their convenience down your throat until you’re so sick that you feel you must ask for help from a doctor who will just treat your symptoms with pills rather than explain to you that the convenience you’re putting in your mouth every day is what keeps you sick.

whatever reasons you have for choosing the things you do, are YOUR reasons. you can choose to change if you please, or choose to stay the same if it’s more convenient for you.

pleasure, necessity, and convenience — in your mouth2020-12-14T13:46:09+00:00

Just In Case You Didn’t Know…

2020-12-17T15:33:53+00:00

“Writing is inherently reflective.”

~ Terry Heick

i NEED to write. i’m working on making time in my weekly schedule to write more often. writing has taught me more about myself than anything else i do, including yoga.

when i coach and train clients, there are always writing assignments. between the physical work, the food deprogramming work, and the writing work, hands down, the writing is the most enlightening part.

writing is like taking a bright light and illuminating the hidden parts within you. it’s not always that you know what you are looking at, at first, but things will ALWAYS become clear if you continue writing about them.

i happen to be writing this for you but it’s also for me and truthfully, even though i share with you, it’s really ALWAYS for me.

i don’t really know what it is about bypassing speaking the words but i am WAY more clear and articulate when i write versus when i speak. something about not having to use my brain to convert the thoughts into sounds, probably. or maybe sharing with my journal first is safer and more comfortable than sharing with other humans while i’m still trying to figure things out.

writing isn’t necessarily easy. often times i am crying while writing and have a hard time continuing as shit comes up but the time i spend writing (or crying) is never wasted.

i often feel like there is a deeper truth in my writing that cannot be expressed through speech. like the absolute most honest i am, is here, in these written words.

so, in case you are in need of some of your own honesty, or self-exploration, or you just need to figure something out that’s going on inside you, write. it will reveal the clearest view of what is within you.

from the truth in my heart, V

Just In Case You Didn’t Know…2020-12-17T15:33:53+00:00

connection flow VS connectivity issues

2020-12-17T16:07:29+00:00

Life is full of those things that we don’t become mindful of—until we do.

Until recently, I had never tried to define or explain ‘connection’. To be honest, I don’t know if I can put my inner feelings about connection into words but I want to try.

It seems we learn human connection as babies and children. First from mom, then dad, then from your family or close friends. Everything you learn as a baby and a child molds your perception, or shall I say shapes the walls to contain your understanding of connection.

If your mom and dad are not deeply connected with each other or with you, then your understanding of connection will be shallow until something or someone comes along to show you more depth.

If you are lucky enough to have a childhood best friend that you get really close to, then you are able to expand your understanding of connection through every secret, through every tear, every fight, every laugh and every hug shared with that person.

As you age you experience continued relations with your parents, with your friends, in courtships and with lovers, further defining what connection is to you. Without ever having to put words to it, connection is defined, understood, and shaped by each and every relationship you’ve been a part of.

Once you’ve reached adulthood, your definition of connection can become a foundational support for your physical and mental well-being as a healthy human. When you find yourself able to connect with people easily without having to put up rules or boundaries about how that connection is flowing, then you will be able to find the beauty and value in meaningful connections with strangers passing by in an instant.

You may also reach adulthood with a very different idea around connection. Connection may be so sacred to you that it can only be experienced with certain people, in certain ways, through your certain walls that only allow the amount of connection to flow through that you deem necessary.

The flow of connection seems to be fluid, like rushing water, unable to truly be contained, therefore any flow restriction you experience, is a result of the barriers you’ve created inside yourself to cut you off from the flow.

The older I get the more connection seems to become all-encompassing. The most obvious connections are between myself and other humans, but then there is so so much more. Connection to pets, to the moon, to the meat I eat, from the ground to my feet. Connection is everywhere and we are surrounded with opportunities to go deeper and get weirder.

What I really want to write are my thoughts on adult human connection. I was tying to define connection for myself and the words “continuous curiosity with reciprocating compassion” keep circling back around. 

Continuous curiosity because to be connected, we must remain interested in their inner world, intrigued by the little gems you learn about them from time to time, and attentive when they share their truth with you. 

Reciprocating compassion because we must keep a genuine, mutual understanding, or a desire to come to understand one another whether or not we agree. Being aware of how each person has arrived where they are, gives a lot of insight as to why they think, speak, or act as they do.

When you lose that continuous curiosity, you lose interest, you lose gratitude for the little things you’ve learned from this person. There is nothing wrong or bad about this, it is simply a loss of connection. 

When you no longer share reciprocating compassion for each other, you lose understanding by always questioning, judging, or frustratingly disagreeing with their thoughts, words, and actions. If you no longer care to remember how they arrived here, then you will lack empathy and therefore lack connection altogether.

For a connection to truly flourish, continuous curiosity and reciprocating compassion flow both ways. When one person shuts down, the entire flow shuts down in both directions. Unless both the giving and receiving channels are open for both humans, the connection won’t be able to flow.

It’s a beautiful thing to connect with others, to experience that love, and to learn from them. It’s an honest human thing to lose a sense of connection with someone and to have to move on without that connection.

I believe connection is a sacred art within human nature. It’s not necessary to survive, but it is necessary to thrive.

connection flow VS connectivity issues2020-12-17T16:07:29+00:00

The Life Of A Word : Part 2

2019-11-10T13:44:51+00:00

about a month ago i wrote about how words can be given life by the thoughts and energy you put behind the word. in the same way, words can become lifeless by a shift in your thoughts and feelings that change the energy behind a word.

when i wrote the story about the word shame (here it is if you missed it), i mentioned how i would be telling 3 stories about the life of a word. here is the second…

growing up, i spent all my summers and christmases in louisiana with my brother and 3 cousins, all boys. my uncle would take the boys hunting and fishing while i would stay behind with my aunt. at first, because i LOVE my aunt, i was excited that she wanted to spend time with me all to herself buuuuut, eventually i realized what the boys were doing without me.

for years, i begged them to take me with them, but for years i was never invited. i do recall a couple of fishing trips i got to tag along on but no hunting and i was so deeply disappointed about it.

fast forward almost 30 years and i get into a relationship with a guy who hunts and fishes in louisiana, just like my family, but he takes me with him 🙂 dream come true. i absolutely LOVE being a tag along while he hunts and fishes. it’s simply the best.

so i’m with this guy and i hunt with him and i watch his bird dog, Gypsy, hunting with him but mostly hunting FOR him. it’s so effing cool. this dog is hard wired to find the birds for her human to shoot, then find them once they’ve fallen, and retrieve them back to her human. this right here, is what this wildly energetic dog lives for. and she wants to repeat this process for eternity until you interrupt her by forcing her to drink water or by putting her back in the truck to go home.

after watching them do their thing together over and over i just had to have my own dog to do this for me! voodoo was 11 and not interested sooooo i got a puppy! he was an 8 week old english setter. white with a black head and black polka dots all over his body that they call “ticking”.

i hadn’t had a puppy in 11 years. he was perfection. he was sweet and cuddly as can be, showed me as much affection as i showed him, and when the time came, an EXCELLENT bird dog. his name was Hickory. he was brett and i’s first pup we raised together, and he was extremely special to both of us.

Hickory grew up staying on point (literally and figuratively) with his bird dog instincts and was a beauty and a blast to hunt with. not long after Hicks, Brett got a new pup he named Gus. Gus is a bigger dog and has a extra wild streak in him unlike the others.

of the three dogs, there was a clear favorite. Hickory was it. he had grace and spunk and more energy than the energizer bunny. he was great at holding steady points on birds, he was extremely obedient in the field, and he was Brett’s favorite dog to hunt with whether he admits it or not.

both of us had become extremely attached. even though i hate to admit the truth about how Brett did all the training so Hickory really hunted for him and not me, i still insisted that no matter their relationship, he was always MY dog, and brett insisted the opposite.

if you read the first part of this story about shame, you’d know that brett and i went through an extremely rocky and difficult time in our relationship between last year and this one. during this difficult time, thoughts of separating were on our minds but one thing that kept us tied together was that neither of us could bare the pain of losing Hicks. neither of us could stand to be separated from him. when only strings held us together, unknowingly Hickory was one of them.

if i heard the word Hickory, i had an instant smile, if not on the outside, on the inside for sure. only fondness existed when he came to mind. i especially enjoyed observing him move. he would leap around the yard, over fences, over dogs, or mostly over nothing but air like a little gazelle or antelope just really excited and hoppy.

so as you can see, the word hickory was pure light for me—that is, until he unexpectedly died in January. then things shifted, the light dimmed and the energy that existed when i heard the word hickory was dark, heavy, sinking and trying to pull me down with it. the vision that came to mind wasn’t of leaping hickory, it was of how he looked the last time i saw him—dead with his tongue hanging out.

our hickory thread was broken and our hearts were painfully broken, but miraculously, those broken hearts, broke us open and broke us into our relationship. the threads binding us together rerooted themselves as we dug deeper within ourselves. our new roots grew from our courage to get clear and be honest about our own truth and our own pain.

i believe the threads that connect us to others are made up of two strings, one from each of us, that spiral and bind together to make the whole thread. i believe the strongest of the last few threads between Brett and i was made up of all that we had held back from each other, all we didn’t say, all we didn’t do, all we didn’t appreciate and all we took for granted.

i entered into this relationship wearing my past experiences on my sleeve. i’m not saying that was right or wrong, just saying, the closing wounds and thoughts from my last relationships were still at the forefront of my mind and clouding my ability to see clear, to truly be clear and to be honest with myself and him. regardless, we are where we are, i can see more clearly than i could before, and it feels liberating to not hold anything back.

it came to the point where the fear of us separating was less than the fear of my not being my true authentic and honest self with him. ever since then, we’ve both been getting really honest and it has helped nurture the bond between us.

rewind to february—just a couple short weeks after hickory had died, i swooped up another puppy. voodoo had died the previous year, and although “we” had two more dogs, i felt like i didn’t have a dog anymore, and the thought of being dog-less felt unbearable during this tough time in my life.

the new pup’s name is Boggs and he is also an english setter. he is not very loving and cuddly, he does not leap all cute like a gazelle, and even though i adore him, he has very little interest in getting attention from me unless it involves food. he is a completely different kind of dog and a completely different teacher.

when we first got Boggs, and i would think about Hickory, i’d feel guilt and sadness. as much as i liked boggs, i’d compare him to hickory and get even more sad about losing my favorite little buddy. but, many months later, now that boggs is bigger and acting more like an adult setter, he reminds me of Hickory a lot and things have changed. the more Boggs acts like Hicks, barks like Hicks, hops like Hicks and so on, the more i smile remembering my lil buddy.

the more thoughts of Hickory that come to mind and the more i smile remembering him, the more life and vitality the word Hickory has to me.

time, patience, and love change everything. EVERYTHING. the life of “hickory” has been revived for me. in fact, that lil shit Boggs is outside barking right now and he sounds just like Hickory did. only problem now is, i keep wanting to call him Hicks…

V.

VIP LOUNGE GALLERY

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The Life Of A Word : Part 22019-11-10T13:44:51+00:00

It’s Happening And You Cannot Stop It.

2019-11-10T13:53:05+00:00

It’s happening and you cannot stop it. Life will challenge you and you cannot escape.

I just sat down to write but I don’t have a plan of what to write. Finding—no scratch that—MAKING the time to sit down and write is by far the hardest part of writing for me.

But now, I’m sitting pretty because the hardest part is out of the way. Ok, what to write… Since I don’t have a clear vision of what i want to write, i’ll explain how i start. I use writing as a way to assess the state I’m in, to figure out what’s going on inside me, or to figure out what’s got my panties in a bunch. Regardless of what I am after, I just start with a simple question. This simple question opens the door for me to explore.

So what will the question be today? I don’t know, but i want to write about my insides, hmmmm. I’ll start with…

Why do you want to write about “your insides”?

Because lately, they’ve been quite interesting. There is a lot going on in my small world, including a lot going on in the lives of people close to me and when I watch people face challenges in their own lives, I become more and more intrigued by mankind.

No two people are the same, but our similarities with each other are everything.

It’s interesting how many people I’ve witnessed wanting so badly to be different, for their lives or circumstances to be unlike anyone else’s, so that they can insist on feeling as if it’s too hard for anyone to understand them.

Yet, at the root of that thought that keeps being repeated for them “I’m unlike any other so it’s too hard for anyone to understand me” is a screaming, crying human begging the world to see and understand them.

I’ve witnessed time and time again people putting up an arm, like a sword, to keep people from getting closer, to keep people from being able to truly see the real person beneath the armor. Many people do this, my friends do this, shit i do this.

I see this as a form of self-destruction, self-sabotage, self-mutilation and self-harm. But I don’t see this as WRONG, i see this as HUMAN and i see it as necessary. Fear convinces us that we are alone, that we are too far out for anyone to understand us, and that it’s better to just keep to ourselves and keep our shit to ourselves.

If you keep to yourself (keep your armor on) you don’t get your shit (your blood) on anybody and nobody gets their shit on you. Except that’s not true. Your shit IS you. It surrounds you. It exudes from you. It gets on everything you touch and seeps into every space you occupy.

If you think it’s better to keep your shit to yourself so that it doesn’t affect other people, you are delusional. Your shit is already affecting other people. YOU affect other people. Until your death, you can’t escape the world or it’s people. No matter how much you keep to yourself, know that your skin does not contain the mess within. You spill out into the world and onto people whether you mean to or not.

Take responsibility for your shit and everything you are going through. Work to heal your wounds by letting them breathe, by sharing your battle stories, by letting people see the real wounded human that you are. We cannot learn to understand the armored soldier who’s ready to fight. We can’t see his face, to see the pain. We never see his eyes, therefore we never see his soul.

The ironic thing about keeping our swords up, and our armor on is that the weight gets exhausting, the wounds stay wrapped up tight festering and the arm holding the sword has no strength left to wield it. Sure the armor keeps you together and the sword protects you from people getting too close but now you are weak, and you can barely defend yourself.

Taking off the armor is like setting down a weight, plus it lets the wounds breathe and heal. Putting our swords down enables us to take a break, to gain some strength back, and to use the arm for other things—like reaching out, instead of keeping everyone out.

My writing all of this started by acknowledging that people all around me are facing some tough situations. Challenging, tough situations stress us, wound us, and reveal the deepest, darkest things within us. Fear and pain thrive in stress, in wounds, and in darkness. It’s the tough and challenging times that bring up the toughest, most challenging things that exist inside us.

So what the cuss do you do when the tough and challenging time is upon you? You accept it. You accept that you are scared, that you are wounded and in pain. The only other thing to do is, deny it, suit up in your armor, and pick up your sword. But why do that? Are you going into battle?

You can battle through this or you can live through this. When you battle through, you fight. When you fight, you fight to win. But what does it mean for you to win here? You cannot win life.

You also cannot win against fear or pain because they are not your contenders. Fear and pain are your teachers. Rather than battle through, live through this and learn from each and every teacher that appears along the way.

Whether you win this battle or live through this hard time, you will not get out of being human alive. And when you die, you go alone, with all that stuff you’ve kept inside you. You can go with fear and pain scaring you all the way to death, or go with love and acceptance for the life you lived and learned from.

It’s Happening And You Cannot Stop It.2019-11-10T13:53:05+00:00

The Life Of A Word

2019-11-10T13:53:54+00:00

all the words you know, have life because you breathe life into them. if a word causes you to feel something, it’s because you give the word a meaning to feel. i want to tell you three stories about three words i’ve had this experience with: shame, hickory and mallard.

I’m using these 3 stories as a way to share with you what i’ve been learning and experiencing over the last year and to make my way back to sharing with you, to connecting with you and to honor the deepest desires of my own heart—to live my human life boldly, out loud, and unapologetically as a perfectly, imperfect human doing the best she can while she’s still here.

all 3 stories end with the same note. this is the first of the three stories…

last year, i started feeling really frustrated, unsettled and uneasy in my relationship with my partner. we both knew it was happening, but neither of us knew how to make a move, make a shift, make a change, we just knew individually that we weren’t happy and thus we sat in the pile of our own mess we didn’t know how to clean up or move out of.

after months of this, i (subconsciously) came up with a way to move things that ended up sweeping our feet out from under us. i went against everything i’ve ever practiced, believed in, or stood for and for an entire month, I engaged in infidelity.

at the time, i truly and selfishly believed that what i was doing was exactly what i needed, exactly what i wanted, and it was pretty much inevitable with the way my relationship was going — but my feeling that way, was me convincing myself that I was owning my behavior and therefore OK with it. the more i convinced myself i deserved this time, the more at ease with it i became.

but underneath it all, i was never ok with it, i just wanted to be ok with it so that’s how i behaved.

when the month was over the storm began. NOTHING was ok. my partner wasn’t ok, i wasn’t ok, and our world was turned upside-down by my actions. i was upside-down with my head neck deep in shame, in disgust and in disbelief of what i had done and how much i had destroyed.

i had shattered his trust in me. i’ve never done anything like that with someone. I’m an honest person. i don’t hurt people. i don’t give people a reason not to trust me. i preach the importance of listening to and living through the truth of our own hearts — but my month of behavior turned against all of this.

i turned against myself — and this is how i gave shame a strong and powerful presence in my life for the months to come. this is how i gave life to the word “shame”.

in case you are unfamiliar with an experience like this (and god i hope you are), when partners decide to stay together and attempt to “work things out” after something like this, there is A LOT of talking.

talking means owning things and at this point, owning even the smallest true bit of my behavior brought on the biggest shame storm cloud. so, every single conversation (and there were waaaay too many to count), every single time i had the courage to own even a spec of this story, i would sit in the downpour of my own shame for days or sometimes weeks at a time.

i’ve never been that sad in all of my life. i was shocked to realize that the person that could make me feel the worst, was me, and me alone.

my extreme sadness and shame was a direct result of the pain i caused my partner. it felt impossible to bare the truth that I — as the honest & authentic person i thought myself to be — made conscious decisions that caused my partner to be unable to trust me. conscious decisions that caused the loss of my own integrity.

living in my own pit of despair, this was a regular conversation i had with myself

“why are you here? what’s keeping you here?”

“ugh, i’m just so, so, so fucking sad, i can’t shake it.”

“why?”

“shame. i am absolutely disgusted with myself. i’ve never felt this ashamed in all my life”

“alright. shame then. if this is me now, what can i learn from all of this shame and sadness?”

AND THE LEARNING BEGAN…

– breaking the trust someone has in me is how my shame is conceived.

– the dishonesty that comes from lying to myself or someone else is shame’s life force.

– shame can arrive the size of a pea, and grow to the size of a boulder.

– shame is a reaction to myself when my behavior doesn’t align with my heart and soul.

– shame cannot coexist with acceptance, understanding and forgiveness.

– if i hide from shame, it attaches to my back and the weight drags me down but if i own my shame, if i pick it up and choose to carry it, it becomes lighter as i become stronger.

– acting out of alignment with my heart & soul causes me physical illness

After about 6 months of apprenticing shame, I had learned all that shame was able to teach me—this time. And after those six months, i had a better understanding of the life of shame. in that time, i actually befriended shame like an imaginary friend. i gave shame life by experiencing it, by feeling it and living it.

But in the end, i also took life away from shame. i became so familiar with how shame lives, all it’s habits, all it’s fears and i began to put myself face-to-face with all the little nuances that gave shame life. Through this process, I began to evict shame from my temple.

Today, shame is just a memory. It’s no longer a living, breathing entity in my life. I breathed life into shame, and then i sucked the life right out of it.

Shame, just like ‘love’, and just like ‘god’, is a word only you can breathe life into. And when you don’t need shame in your life any longer, it’s a word you can suck the life right back out of.

THE END NOTE

i’ve come to realize my life is not for getting better and better and better until i am the best i can be. it’s about learning, it’s about growing, and it’s about perpetuating the process. as i rise to higher levels of consciousness, of awareness, of understanding, no matter how seemingly ugly the experiences that got me there are, i must share what it’s like to be this human.

when i open up and share the truth about my struggles, my challenges, my failures, and my shame accompanied by my lessons, my understanding, my influence, my successes and my aim — those who see me, see themselves in me, see what’s possible in their own lives or come to a better understanding of how it may be for other people they know.

Either way, every single time i connect with you, learn about you, understand or support you, WE become stronger. my life isn’t about ME becoming stronger, my life is about US all rising together.

…and so is yours…

with so much love, and so much truth, i appreciate you being here with me, Veazey

The Life Of A Word2019-11-10T13:53:54+00:00