Posted in Family, Health and Wellness, Inspiration, Motivation

Does your comfortable sadness almost feel like happiness?

Jelan

Jelan and I have been driving together the last couple of days. It is really a pleasure to drive him to college and to have those extra moments to have some deep conversations about life. This morning, we talked  a little about how we ‘see’ life from our various perspectives, drawing specific reference to the vision which a giraffe has of the world is different when compared to a turtle. Our conclusion was that a person’s vision is unique to them – they can only see as far as their unique level.

The conversation expanded to our general disposition in life and how we perceive others and how others may also perceive us.  He said something which left quite an impact on my mind:

“Comfortable sadness can almost feel like happiness.”

How profound. How true.

It made me realize that sometimes we hold on to sadness because it is comfortable.  We perhaps don’t know what it is like to be happy or may have even decided that we don’t deserve to be happy.  Sometimes, we repeat our unhappy stories until we make them become ‘how’ our lives should be.  Even when opportunities to be happy are begging us to join in the vibrancy of happiness, it is more comfortable to remain in our sadness.  Sadness can even become a way of life and eventually define our personalities, our lives and even the relationships which we share with others.

On the other hand, maybe what we perceive as sadness, may not be sadness at all!

What are your thoughts?

I believe that each time the universe feels our happiness, there is a global shift in human consciousness towards greater love, compassion and kindness… and even with one single breath of happiness… the entire world beams.

I believe that sadness does the same thing… every single moment of sadness, also creates a global shift in human consciousness towards greater despair, and fear.

It is o.k to be sad but don’t let sad moments into a lifetime of sadness.

It is o.k to be happy. Multiply your happy moments over and over again.

My thoughts:  I am happy. I choose happiness as my way of life. I embrace laughter, joy, fun… as much as I can… as I push beyond my boundaries… and I am so delighted with all the wonderful people, great opportunities, amazing places and beautiful moments which this world is blessing me with every day.

Love,

Mags

 

 

 

Posted in Family, Inspiration, Love, Mags Magazine - Soulful Encounters, Meet Ordinary People Doing Great Things!, Relationships, Women

Meet Emily Cattelan, one of our featured speakers for the launch of Soulful Encounters

Is it possible to find this perfect partner?  I believe so and so does Emily!  It is a wonderful gift to see the love that is shared between Emily and her husband Roger.

In January 2014, I sent out a Face Book request for love stories and ‘what makes you feel safe and valued’ in your relationship.   At that time, I thought I was going to have  an special valentine issue for Mags Magazine.  Emily sent me an article about her relationship and the reasons why she feels safe in her relationship.  I immediately thought “WOW!”  We did not do a publication for Valentine but we thought it was a perfect article for Soulful Encounters! She has hit the nail on the head because what is working so beautifully well for them, are things that most of us want in our relationship!  She clearly does appreciate the many things which Roger does – both in words and in action.  A wonderful example of a positive SOULFUL ENCOUNTER.

Come out and listen to her story on May 25th, 2016 and share in the blessings of love.

Here is a little snippet on Emily:

Roger and Emily

Emily Cattelan has a zest for life and a passion for helping others succeed. She was born in a family of World War 2 Italian immigrants. Her parents, grandparents, uncles and aunts, came to Canada to make a better life for themselves and their children. In this big loving family, Emily was taught to love and respect all living things and to always help those in need. This helped to shape Emily’s belief that our most important role on this earth is to support each living thing in becoming the best that they can be. She believes that this can be accomplished through nurturing, mutual love, respect, and random acts of kindness. She has instilled these lessons in her daughter and she is looking forward to teaching her 2 young grandchildren these same lessons. She is here to share her story of how she found her perfect life partner

Look out for our next featured couple:  Dale and Trevor Stevenson!

Our featured keynote speaker: Laura Traplin

Laura

Get your tickets

poster for event

Love,

Magdalene

 

 

 

Posted in Celebrations, Family, Health and Wellness, Inspiration, Uncategorized

Happy Easter! Sometimes, it is only our faith which keeps us anchored in sanity.

Happy Easter!

Easter is a very reflective time for me.  I reflect on the life of Christ and the  many other great sages and spiritual masters who have enlightened us but they also endured much suffering.  They held on to their faith in their darkest moments.

What I have learnt is that suffering is a part of our life journey.  We cannot live a lifetime without suffering. Bob Marley, our famous Reggae  artist said, “Truth is everybody is going to hurt you: you just gotta find the ones worth suffering for.” 

Our ability to put our suffering into perspective  is the key to getting us through those dark moments.  The following words which Christ uttered during his most difficult suffering on the cross, keeps me grounded  when I go through my personal challenges.

“Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they do.” Gospel of Luke 23:34

“Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise.” Gospel of Luke 23:43

“Jesus said to his mother: “Woman, this is your son.”
Then he said to the disciple: “This is your mother.”
Gospel of John 19:26-27

“My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” Matthew 27:46 and Mark 15:34

Jesus cried out in a loud voice,
“Father, into your hands I commend my spirit.”
Gospel of Luke 23:46

Sometimes, our faith is all that keeps us anchored in sanity, regardless of our religion. I seek only to be more Christ-like, more Budha-like, more God-like.  At the end of it all, our behaviour towards each other is the truest reflection of the emotions which are held deep within us.  I pray, for you and I, that this emotion will always be love, in the  most sacred and purest form.

May you have a blessed Easter Celebration.

Love,

Mags

 

Posted in Family, Inspiration, Living from the soul, Motivation

Memories of Mom Living her Passion.

IMAG3216“Come and look at the sewing machine with me.” My mom beckoned me to follow her to the dark corner where the old singer sewing machine had been stored for several years since she became blind.

She uncovered the sewing machine.  The cloth over it was a heavy linen which had covered it for decades. She pulled out the small wooden draws on the side and took out a small brush to dust it. She gently pulled it out from the dark corner to the light and then started to test the peddles which seemed to be stuck and made a funny creaking sound.  She found an old bottle of  machine oil, safely tucked inside the drawer and applied it to the various small machine parts while she tested the peddles over and over until it rolled with ease. Her numb hands fumbled with the parts and they dropped from her hands occasionally. She bent her head and strained her eyes as much as she could but she did not stop  until she felt that she had given the sewing machine the proper care and touch which it needed.  It seemed to me that at the end of that experience she looked exhilarated.

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My tears flowed nonstop as I helped her with the sewing machine and observed the pensive and thoughtful look on her face.  I know how much this sewing machine meant to her and I am sure that if she was right here with me, she would tell me that it was her lifeline. Back in 1929, women like my mom did not have the fair advantage to go to school.  She was denied an education because she was the eldest child and had to stay home to help her mother with the house work.  I believe that she must have been about fifteen when she learnt how to sew with one of the top seamstresses from the neighbouring village of Laborie.  To get to her sewing classes, she had to walk almost an hour to and from the class.  She got married about fifteen years as well and her father, who had been physically absent from most of her life,  gave her  the sewing machine – I believe as a wedding gift. She smartly invested her time in mastering the art and developed her small business in sewing tailored made clothing for  the people in the community.  She was one of the few seamstresses in the community.   Many people came to our home with bags of cloth and styles of clothes from catalogues and gave countless instructions to my mom so that she could turn their visions into wearable garments.

Looking back, I can see what a great mom and entrepreneur she was!  She kept everything in balance by waking up early, getting us all ready for school, cooking meals, doing all the house chores and creating the time to live her passion for sewing as well as earning an income. She sewed all of our clothes and uniforms as well as my dad’s pants and shirts and even the undergarments. Just before his death, he showed me some of the pants which she had made for him and which we still wore up to 2012!   All of my three sisters and I learnt how to sew by watching her.  However, she never wanted us to  sew as a means of earning an income. She believed that we could do more than that and ensured that we had the support which we needed to have a good education.

As an adult, I appreciate all what my mom did a million times more now than I did while I was growing up.  She had a lot less to work with – no education, less money, less opportunity, no management training, no marriage counselling, no parenting classes, no brands, no luxuries… but she had courage, faith, vision, great time management skills and knew how to prioritize her time to get things done. She lived her passion for sewing.  I can only imagine the devastation she felt when she became blind and could no longer live her passion.  Yet, she courageously accepted her fate and one of her favourite lines were “It is not my will but if God wills it for my life, I accept. ”

Those photos were taken in 2007 on my first visit to Saint Lucia after migrating to Canada in 2003. She crossed over in 2011.  I will always hold on to those memories and I am glad that I captured those moments with those photos.

Live your future now.  Do what matters to you and don’t wait for perfect circumstances.

Love,

Magdalene

Posted in Family, Love

Kindness and compassion makes life better and easier… always!

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I was touched today to see two young men host a birthday dinner party for their moms.  The two young men were my son Jelan and his friend Zac.  Zac and his family are also our next door neighbours.  Zac’s mom and I celebrate our birthdays a day apart and Jelan and Zac celebrate their birthdays one day apart too!  Strange coincidence!

We have watched the boys grow up over the years and it is quite remarkable to see them take on more and more responsibility for their lives but more importantly to practice kindness and compassion towards others.  The effort and love which the two of them put into creating this little dinner party for the two families touched my heart.  They planned the menu, took the afternoon off and created a joyful space for the celebration. Neither one of them cook much at home – so I was very impressed with the culinary skills and the great  BBQ.

 

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As a parent, I have held my breath many times as I raise my kids for all kinds of reasons. I have lived with the fear that they would take the wrong path; I have had doubts about my parenting skills; I have spent sleepless nights wondering if they would get home on a particular night and I have prayed millions of times for God to guide them and protect them wherever they are.  Parenting, as most of us who are parents know, does not come with a manual for our unique children.  We apply some best practices and common knowledge but the soul is each child is so uniquely different that we must also allow them the freedom to explore and have the confidence that they will turn out to be fine individuals.

I have repeatedly asked myself the question, “What evidence would I need to have, to know that my children would be fine in the world and be good, contributing citizens?” My answers have been to complete their education, have a good job, be financially responsible, have their own families, own their own home and to have great relationships with others.

Lately, I have added a few more items to the list.  I want them to be able to live harmoniously  with other people and to have compassion and kindness in their hearts towards ALL people, not simply those whom they know or are privileged to spend time with them on a regular basis. As easy as this sounds, it is not always easy to practice kindness and compassion because we have grown to be quite a cautious society with judgements about others which can cause us to be indifferent, unkind or sometimes even hostile.

After watching them in action today, it is my hope that they will continue to remain grounded in humility and find small and big ways to add beauty to the planet through the consciousness of kindness and compassion.

Love,

Magdalene

Posted in Family, Health and Wellness, Holiday, Inspiration, Work

Take this 7 day escapade to Saint Lucia! Great prices and you will love it!

pitons

Saint Lucia, my homeland, is a gem!  A truly beautiful island with majestic hills and valleys, beautiful beaches and amazing hospitality.

We have joined with some of our partners on the island to provide you with the best price available for accommodation and activities – to be away from your routine for 7 days stress free.  Our Gems Comfort package includes transfer from the airport to your hotel and back to the hotel for departure.

You get to choose your accommodation from three of our amazing places:

Gems Villa Isis, Gems Rex Resort and Piton Vacation Villas!

Hermitage Terrace

About Gemscation

Immerse yourself in local culture and heritage. Come along and have fun, relax and be inspired!

Join us for a Gemscation!

 

Cover - Gemscation

Get more information here:   http://www.gemsofsaintlucia.com/#!gemscation-/c1jlf

Love,

Magdalene

Posted in Family, Life Purpose, Relationships

“I wonder if it is that emptiness which swallows our spirit for living?”

218a95fa-f347-470b-8496-0de93e89ca27 They spoke for three hours. Something was weighing on his mind. He was devastated by the number of suicides which he had experienced within his community over the last couple of years.  As they shared their experiences, they both realized that between the two of them, they knew of almost twenty people who had committed suicide.

“What makes them do it?” he asked her.

“I don’t know.” she replied.

“Sometimes I think that we have not learnt how to experience emptiness within us.  There are two types of emptiness – one which last for a short period and one which last for a long period which leaves a feeling of hopelessness within.  Both are normal and both should be seen as healthy but sometimes people can’t cope with that feeling of emptiness.” He answered quietly.

They explored the topic from all angles – from people who have everything and seem to have no clear reason to commit suicide, to people who were stressed by financial, emotional or social challenges…but still, at the end of the conversation, he did not have an answer to justify the deliberate end of a life.

“If you had a serious problem, like debt or you had committed a crime or had been in a situation which made you feel ashamed, who would you go to?” she asked.

He bent his head and got in a pensive mood. “I have no one who could support me if I was in a serious crisis.  No one has time and neither do they have the resources to support someone else.  We are all busy trying to hold our own stuff together.” he replied.

The conversation left a heavy feeling in the air. His body shifted uncomfortably. As she looked closer at him, she saw the sadness in his eyes.  She suddenly became alerted to the unspoken message within the room.  He was close to the edge himself. As he pondered on the grief of others, his own grief of trying to hold it together for so long by himself was beginning to crumble. The tears welled in his eyes and as they streamed down his face. His sobbing was unstoppable. “I am sorry.” he apologized between the sheets of tissue. “It is so hard to keep it all in sometimes.  Just having anyone to listen to relieve the emptiness is so important. I don’t have a problem which I can name.  I have an emptiness in me which seems to be going on forever.  I wonder if it is that emptiness which swallows our spirit for living?”

We often think that problems need a diagnosis.  Maybe most do.  But what if it is just this nagging feeling that won’t go away?  What if the only way to get through it, is to talk long enough?  What if the problem may never be fixed? Depression, anxiety, post traumatic stress, stress, inability to cope with life, cannot always be seen on someone’s face. We may not have the answer to why someone commits suicide and there are some things which we may never understand in this lifetime.

My simple explanation is that it is simply their exit point from this lifetime. However, don’t underestimate the power of a conversation today! You may just be that lifeline to someone.  Also, don’t forget to seek support when that feeling of emptiness seems to be taking away your spirit for living fully.

Love,

Magdalene