My mother's name was Deborah. When she died of cancer in 2007, she left me a house and some of her precious books, among them Gibran's The Prophet and a well worn copy of Creative Visualization.
Over the years, my dead mother has shown herself to me in odd ways. Every time I do a professional event for the spiritual and intuitive side of Happy Ganesh (for more information on that, go here), always and without fail the first person that I meet is named Debby, usually Deborah. Always. (At the last event I did, I found myself talking to two young women who were both "daughters of Debby." Predictably, their mothers spelled their names Deborah. I was not surprised.)
The day I moved into my office space, her favorite song was playing on the radio.
When I questioned a rocky relationship, I opened a book to a handwritten note of mom's, scrawled on an aging yellow sticky note, which read: "It matters how we treat the people we love every day, not just on holidays."
Recently, I wasn't sure how to proceed with certain career goals. I'd been looking for - and found - mom's copy of Creative Visualization, a book published in 1978, years before The Secret and Esther Hicks's work came to fame. Since I teach visualization and manifestation, I'd been looking for that particular book, never dreaming that it survived the book purges to Goodwill. But it had. I was fearful about my career, feeling worried, wondering how I would keep my head above water. And it was in that place of fearfulness that I opened the book, looking again for answers from my mother. Another one of her sticky notes, tumbled to the floor, all the glue long since gone. When I picked it up, it read - in her backhanded, rounded print, "To thine own self be true." Amazingly, she'd drawn a small heart after the words.
When I have questions for her, things that only a mother could answer, she seems to collect herself across the gap between life and death to just show up. It's pretty amazing.
Tonight was no exception. Sleepless tonight, I pulled another book of hers off my shelf. God, Sex, and Women of the Bible by Shoni Labowitz, a feminist rabbi. (Damn, my mom was pretty cool, I have to say. I feel lucky to have had a mother who read stuff like this - and who shared it with me!) Sometimes I ask books what I need to know, as if their wisdom will help me find answers. I asked the book. I opened at random - of course - to the Deborah chapter. Color me unsurprised.
I've been wondering about, among other things, career improvement. Crossroads. What do I do? That's what I asked. The book "answered" "Once you have discerned what you want and it feels right in your soul, then ask: What do I need to do to get what I want? Then go for it! Passion moves a woman like nothing else can."
That's her way of reaching me. She knows that books are one of my favorite escapes and it makes me happy to know that she will show up in that favorite place of mine, to give me faith.
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