June 24th, 2013

What is most unexpected in your life? For most people except the very young, the notion that the very best part of your life is still ahead of you is difficult to believe. When we lose our grandparents and other loved ones, it seems as if the funnest times are behind us. When we move and leave friends and familiar places we are always comparing the new friends and new places to the absolutely wonderful people and places of our past. (Things behind us have a way of being remembered as better than they ever were!)

But what if? What if our best days, our deepest most memorable belly laughs, our most confident moments, our crystal clear self realization is all still ahead of us? Would imagining a future like that change our present? You bet it would! We could surmount any obstacle, cast aside any anxiety, weather any storm because we would know, without the shadow of a doubt, that just up ahead was our total and complete happiness and contentment.

If thinking super positive about the future is a stretch for you, consider that your future hasn’t been written in its entirety yet and at this point in time, your brilliant, golden future is just as possible as any other outcome. Still hard to believe? Then consider how dark the glasses you are wearing really are. If you can cast a pall over what is yet unwritten, you are bound to be unhappy and unfulfilled.

Take off the dark glasses, throw them down, grind them underfoot and refuse to see what God has created as anything less than beautiful and uplifting. Cast aside thoughts of failure, loss, separation or future pain and embrace at least the possibility that your future could be something unexpected, unexpectedly rich and beautiful and more happy than you have ever been. It could happen.

(c)2013 All Rights Reserved, Patrick McBride


The Car

June 17th, 2013

Yesterday, I was sitting in the parking lot and staring at a brand new Rolls Royce to my left. I hadn’t seen one in years. As far as cars go, it was beautiful and as far as symbols go, it was up there in the stratosphere. As I condensed my shopping list to what I actually needed, I was hoping that the owner would come out so that I could judge them.

A minute or two later, a top of the line, brand new Mercedes pulled into the empty space in front of me. The woman got out and her eyes locked on the Rolls to her right. She dug into her very expensive purse, pulled out her phone and started snapping picture of the Rolls. She saw me staring at her and the Rolls and she said. “My dream car”. I nodded in approval and she went in to shop.

As improbable as it sounds, someone, somewhere was probably lusting after my ten year old Toyota as I was lusting after the Mercedes in front of me and the lady, now shopping, was lusting after the Rolls. I’m sure that the driver of the Rolls was lusting after some other car in the world too.

There was a whole lot of lusting going on at the grocery store yesterday and that got me to thinking about how much is enough and I realized that there is never enough and there shouldn’t be. Do we want more air than the breath we just took? Do we want another meal after all we ate yesterday? Do we want some sleep tonight even though we slept last night? Do we want more for our loved ones? Yes, yes, yes and yes!

Wanting is not wrong. It is life’s desire for expansion. It is only when the wanting overshadows our gratitude for where we are and what blessings we have right now that we lose our way. Remember, if you curse where you are in life, you will remain there.

(c)2013 All Rights Reserved, Patrick McBride


The World

June 10th, 2013

Once upon a time there was a young girl and she dreamed wild dreams and she sang wild songs and she smiled knowingly at the wind. Her world was full and wondrous but it was not every ones world.

Every ones world was filled with chores and yelling and hurts. Every ones world was filled with strangers and moods and misunderstandings and school. The young girl visited her world as often as she could but every ones world took up more and more of her time. Soon, the road back to her world became overgrown and hard to navigate. She had to make up her mind to either go into her world and let the path overgrow behind her or stay in every ones world and let the path to her world disappear. The path disappeared.

The girl became a woman and the woman longed for a different world than the one she was in. Now and then she would dream a wild dream or hear a note or two of a wild song on the wind and she smiled but didn’t know why. She searched for people with answers. She read books to find the map. She took lovers to make them leaders but they never lead her to where she thought she belonged.

One day she cried so hard that her body shook and her breath came in gasps and eyes puffed up and all the wrong untethered itself from her soul and for a moment she felt free. “The path awaits those who are free” she heard on the wind and she smiled and she knew why she smiled.

She is still free today and she dreams wild dreams and she sings wild songs and she travels freely between two worlds. She swept the past and present wrongs from her life and that made all the difference in both worlds.

(c)2013 All Rights Reserved, Patrick McBride


Let it Go!

June 3rd, 2013

(Let it Go!)

Are you ready for things to get better for you? If you truly are then the first step is to let go of where you have been. Oh, I know, it’s a very juicy story and you’ve made it even more interesting in the retelling of it to yourself and others but if you want to move forward you have to let it go.

Often, we have so much pain and agony attached to a crisis that it becomes a part of us. Not just our history but who we appear to be to others and ourselves. After the five heart operations last year, I found myself becoming those five operations to myself and others. It became what everyone asked me when we met. It became all I talked about to friends and family. I constantly improved the story until I knew where the laughs were and where the horror was. One day I realized that my life, my experiences, my loves, my learning was so much more than those five operations. I had to let it go.

I had to let it go so that I could be more than just a crisis. Immediately I began changing the subject matter every time it came up. I refused to tell the story given the opportunity. I ceased to believe that those operations were the most important things about me. And you know what? I started to heal faster than ever. I started to focus on better health. I joined a gym. I ignored the scars on my chest and started focusing on building muscle again. I started talking about my dreams, hopes and aspirations again. I felt better on every level. I gained by losing. Who would’ve thought?

Sometimes our happiness is not about what we get but by what we let go. What should you let go?

(c)2013 All Rights Reserved, Patrick McBride