On Monday, February 16, 45 years ago, I made a commitment to my husband to share life together. A gala affair it was all right. Our wedding ceremony took place in the Crystal Room of the Beverly Hills Hotel, with it’s elegant walls and carpet emanating rich deep tones of red, a fantasy that was a reality for a gal who grew up on the shores of Lake Erie. Memories flood my consciousness as I reflect on this day: my bridesmaids dressed in their long, red, brocade dresses, the delicate pink heart-shaped canopy under which we spoke our vows, the gaiety which followed, including almost everyone dancing Greek, whether they knew how to or not, they just wanted to be included in on the fun.
45 years later; I have three sensitive and caring adult children, a wonderful daughter-in-law, a son-in-law that’s like a son, four incredibly precious granddaughters, and…the same husband. I feel blessed.
When I was active with “est,” (a human potential growth movement popular in the 70’s) there was always a question that was posed to the volunteers at the conclusion of events. “What worked?” and “what didn’t?” I asked myself those two questions as I began this day of reflection and celebration.
One thing that I believe worked for me was trying to take care of my self, which some people might call selfish. And it was challenging, especially during those early years as we were starting our family. Before I knew it, I was living the American dream; a lovely home (no picket fence though), three children, a dog, and a station wagon. But there was something inside of me that was determined to not loose myself while attending to the demands of our family, establishing a secure and loving environment for our children, nurturing the friendship with my husband and living an active life. My heart was often heavy as I struggled to find my Self in the day- to-day process. (There are some good juicy stories in my book, Attitudes, Beliefs and Choices.) As the children grew older I returned to school, pursued personal growth, and developed my spiritual practice, while pondering the four questions that surface for most of us during significant times in life:
*Who am I?
*Where did I come from?
*Where am I going?
*What am I doing here?
So I would say a big “what worked” for me was being true to myself during the past 45 years of marriage. I believe it brought me to the place where I am today, knowing who I truly am, loving myself, and feeling immensely appreciative for the journey—all of it. I have continually brought all of who I am and the vast spectrum of feelings, to our relationship, with the intention of knowing things always work out for the best. To add to the list: letting go of make wrong, criticism, complaining, the past, the way I think it should be and resistance. Huge lessons.
What didn’t work:
*when I focused on the way I thought life should be, I was in resistance.
*when I focused on the way my body should look, I was in resistance.
*when I focused on my unworthiness, I was in resistance.
*when I focused on being impatient, I was in resistance.
*when I focused on limitations, I was in resistance.
Resistance clearly does not work for a happy life, meaningful relationships, peace of mind nor just about anything.
What does work for me today is to focus on:
*all my blessings
*aligning with The Great Spirit
*expressing myself as the spiritual being that I am—a source of Light and Love
*laughter, enthusiasm and joy
*my spiritual practice
*the grand adventure of life–moment to moment
Alexandra Delis-Abrams, Ph.D., aka The Attitude Doc can help guide you towards a path of tremendous success in all areas of your life and give the life change lessons or change your life.
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