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Entries in first post (1)


And so it begins...



I have a secret. It sits safely nestled in a soft orange leather case at the bottom of my handbag. Every once in a while I catch of glimpse of it while rummaging for my keys and I smile. It feels a little self-indulgent enjoying something no one else knows about but is there just the same, like wearing your most beautiful lingerie under your everyday clothes. Actually, it goes beyond anything hedonistic because this beautiful commonplace object makes me feel joyful, blessed, grateful and inspired all at the same time. In fact, it happens to be the catalyst and muse for this very journal.

What is this secret, you may ask? What is that item sitting at the bottom of my handbag (besides those random bits and pieces of my life) that can bestow such contentment and pleasure?  Intrigued? Well, you ever so kind and generous readers, as this is my first post ever and I am a storyteller at heart, you will have to to be patient with me a little longer for the answers are in the story scribbling that follows. After all, what better way to start this journal than with the day and object that inspired it. And so folks, my Soul Scribbles begin...

Not too long ago, I was sitting in a restaurant enjoying the company of Dee and Kay, two of my dearest and closest friends. Now that we live two hours away from each other, we don't often get the chance to visit in person anymore. It also happened to be my birthday, and even though it was a busy time with graduation ceremonies, house guests and end of school year events, Dee and Kay insisted that we spend at least some part of that day together. And I was so very glad they did because after the year I just had, I truly needed to see those faces of theirs.

Feeling the warmth of the afternoon sun through the glassless window, I was grateful for their friendship and smiled. We've known each other for many years now, growing up together as young mothers right along with our own children who are in turn good friends themselves. We've shared kindnesses, tears and humour. We've watched our children grow from toddlers to teenagers, and as I sat back admiring how lovely they looked all dressed up for our special lunch, with Kay even wearing heels and a daring decolleté (not exactly something we would normally see this most practical girl wear), I couldn't help but imagine and look forward to the three of us still meeting up like this in our future golden years.

Being a part of each other's journeys has been a gift and a pleasure, even when at times those paths became less smooth and the 'Delicate Cycle' would stop working right in the middle of one of us doing 'Life's Laundry'. Good friends don't need an invitation if they sense something is wrong; they are at your side offering whatever support is needed. The really good ones also step in to make sure you don't disappear under that growing pile of 'living laundry'; they find you, help with the clean up and make you press the 'Reset' button.

That's exactly what Dee and Kay did for me this past year. Even from a distance their caring vigilance would not succumb to my stubbornness in wanting to hide away and be overwhelmed. They tied a lifeline around me and pulled and tugged and pulled some more until I came up for air. Now, as our lunch and chatter continued, I realized I was laughing; a lot. That sound had become foreign to me and I vaguely remembered it, but I liked it. That lifeline I had held onto so tightly suddenly became less taunt and I felt that I could finally begin to heal. For so long now I had been struggling with that messy, heartbreaking pile that life had so unexpectedly thrown over me that I didn't know who I was anymore and I so desperately wanted to be my old self again.

As if on cue, a gift was placed in front of me. I opened the box and found an adorable orange pen. I felt my heart jump and smile all at once. Those creative whispers that were murmuring away inside of me for so long suddenly became loud and clear. I instantly knew that the time had come to finally put those aspirations into action even if I was unsure about the process. There was just something about that colour that was so delightfully unexpected and inspiring that it instantly made me feel joyous and want to have fun again. That pen was urging me to find my old paint box and pastels and fill up canvases with colour, to take out a stack of paper and start to scribble away words. I wanted to go home and open up that drawer where my forgotten dreams had been pushed way too far back and one by one, I wanted to dust off them the self-doubt and believe in their potential again. That magnificent crazy orange pen was calling out to me and it said "Hey girl, it's been a while, but now that you're back, pack up all that knowledge you have learned earned this year, pack up all that potential you've forgotten about, put them in that bag called Possibilities and let's get going!" Sometimes inspiration and catalysts come in the strangest forms and they speak to you with such clarity and calling that all you can do is listen and yield to its summons.

Yet, the biggest revelation of the day came when Kay and Dee explained they had chosen to give me a special writing instrument and that particular colour because it reminded them of me. Me? I suddenly saw myself through their eyes and with much gratitude, I felt found. At that moment it dawned on me that although I had forgotten how to be me, although I had trouble finding that person I once could so easily describe as me believing her now lost and broken forever, those two never lost sight of her. Who else but those who know you so well, the ones who never give up on you are always able to still see the real you in spite of your pain, physical changes, or self-imposed exile? The simple fact is my friends never stopped seeing who I was; they were just waiting for me to recognize her once again.

So, you see folks, an orange pen is my secret and it has become my muse. Every time I look at it I am reminded that I am a writer and an artist and that I should never stop scribbling from my soul, because if I do it would be like holding my breath. It reminds me that authenticity, passion and compassion reside within and because of that I am fierce. It reminds me of the joy I find in living a perfectly imperfect life and how extraordinary celebrating the ordinary moments can be. It reminds me of how blessed I am, of what good friends I have and of how our stories can be messy, complicated and beautiful and because of that my journey is enriched. It reminds me that practicing courage, gratitude and forgiveness makes me free.  And lastly, though by no means least, it reminds me never to lose sight of myself or the knowledge that I am always able to press that reset button when the delicate cylce breaks down again. This is why I just can't help but smile a little when I catch a glimpse of that orange leather case in my handbag, even if I can't find those darn keys again.