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People,Paulo, Perspective

Paulo Coelho wrote- “No one loses anyone, because no one owns anyone.

That is the true experience of freedom and loyalty.”

These words stuck a chord with me and I  pondered the depth and scope of what it means to lose, to own, to love, to understand and to have freedom. It wasn’t enough for me to be content with my own rambling thoughts so I asked a few people to read Paulo’s quote and share their own perspective.

 As always,when I ask…I receive back so much more and, once again, my eyes were opened to see the incredible insight and wisdom that others have.

“It makes me think of passing trees in a forest during a walk- I may stop and rest in the shade, or seek shelter from a sudden storm, admire its leaves or climb it’s branches, but it is not mine. The experience of kinship and admiration of it’s beauty is all I can claim to own.”

Her response came as I was walking around a farm that belonged to my family. I stood underneath a huge tree with a trunk so wide and thick that 3 people could wrap their arms around it and still just touch fingertips. The branches reached high towards the heavens and offered  such a breathtaking  shade canopy…and as I read my friends words again and again, I couldn’t help but think that is such a profound way of looking at  Paulo’s words.

Every tree,like every person, is unique and some grow deep,strong roots and have a wide reach while others just never seem to grow and bloom.  The trees in the forest and the farm were left alone- battered by the storms, warmed by the sun, soaked by the rain and they grew…much like people that let the experiences of life make them strong, gracious and beautiful.


However, I’ve always noticed that trees planted to look perfectly coordinated with the landscape, constantly pruned and clipped never seem quite as beautiful, strong , graceful or “real” as the trees that grow wild and free. Those ornamental trees take so much time and effort to keep in their “proper” place and their growth is stunted because they are owned by people that want the trees to appear a certain way, be a certain size and shape and do a certain thing.


Isn’t that like relationships? When someone tries to “own” another person- to control their growth,to prune their branches, to make them be “just so” then the relationship never really reaches high or grows deep, it doesn’t weather the storms well and it becomes so much less than it could be.

Yet when a person and a tree has freedom, the strength and beauty that grows is absolutely breathtakingly beautiful.

Another wise friend wrote this;
“No one owns anyone;the attempt is controlling and abusive. We should all feel like we are freely there in therelationship. And yes, that is the true experience of freedom and loyalty, but what Paulo says belies the pain of a lost relationship if it ends. That is some of the most intense pain.”

Which again made me think of trees and of birds.The huge variety of birds has always amazed me and I’ve read that every bird sounds different, too, with distinct songs and calls. I love seeing birds outside but whenever I see one in a cage, my heart just aches and yet I know that these types of birds are bred- pruned- for the purpose of looking pretty in their gilded cages, singing the only song they can, mimicking the words spoken to them. They have never experienced freedom and couldn’t survive if they were free to fly. They can only live if they are owned.

Some people want and need relationships like this. Maybe their past has cast such a long shadow that it covers their present and future with the flickers of pain and the only way they can give and accept love is with certain conditions- cages that lock others out and them inside.

They are so afraid of losing love, that they limit love and sometimes, they wind up losing the very thing they’ve tried so hard to hold tight.

It’s a type of control that makes sure the person, like an ornamental tree, stays right where it’s supposed to and looks as good as possible to everyone that comes around.

Yet, a long time friend shared this, “Rather than focusing upon the thought of possibly losing someone, perhaps I should focus upon gratitude for each moment that they choose to share their wonderful life with me.”

What if we took that perspective of his to heart? What if we loved deeply with gratitude that we have this moment, this opportunity, this person that chooses to love us back? What if we recognized love in all different forms..just as we see the beauty and purpose of all the trees in the woods and marvel at the numerous species of birds?

What if we were grateful for the time we had instead of regretting the time we’ve lost or worrying about how much time we might have left?

Maybe being “owned” is really what another wise man wrote in reply to my request. “It’s an undeniable truth when it comes to people. No one is truly owned by another, although it can feel like it. We give much to those we love, it might feel like a mutual agreement of ownership. But the ones we truly love and\or yearn for are the ones who have ‘ownership’ of us.”

Just as I love this place where I’ve built my massage business and consider it “mine” in so many ways, the truth of the matter is that I didn’t plant a single tree that brings me such joy..I can only be grateful that someone else did many years ago.  I have planted flowers that will return year after year- growing more abundantly each time. I’ve loved this place deeply but I do not own it and when I leave, it’ll still be a part of me; carved into my heart and I’ll  yearn for the patio and the peacefulness it gives me each day.

That’s also how I think of these people that shared their deepest thoughts with me. We don’t own each other but, in our special ways, we love and share and, in doing so, claim a mutual ownership of freedom and loyalty and as my friend said,

“There are definitely people I really miss,but that doesn’t diminish the joy of those I am with.”


If we can just ponder Paulo and put things into perspective maybe we’ll experience love the way it’s intended to be and we’ll offer shade, shelter, protection, and purpose to all those that we come to know and to love. 

👣💗Jeanna’  Mead

6 54 p.m. 5-30-18

http://www.jeannasoul.com

Uncategorized

Walking Papers

Now that I know

I’m not wanted anymore

it’s all I can do 

not to take everything

down off the walls

roll tissue paper around

the things I’ve collected

 pack the boxes

stack them one by one

take all the paintings

the pictures and the words

stack them together 

tie the string on tight

sit in the rocking chair

on my patio I love

blow kisses to the air

wipe the tears

that dare to blur my sight

I’ve got my walking papers

and I don’t belong

I never stay

and I sure don’t go

where I’m not wanted

anymore

Just waiting for the door

to open wide

I’m already packed

in my mind

Pulled my boots on

when I heard the words

and these boots were made

for walking

I’m gonna walk away

from this place

but I’m taking all my things

every memory

each embrace

all those things

that won’t fit 

inside any box

or tied with string

because they are carved

into the walls of my heart.

👣💗👣💗 Jeanna’ Mead 

6 17 a.m.  2-11-18

http://www.jeannasoul.com

http://www.rockwallbodyandsoulmassage.com

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 Dazzled and Reflective


I read a poem

the other day

sent to me by a far away friend

and the words etched themselves

into my heart

let me be dazzled, absolutely dazzled and then reflective

by the beauty of the things I see

the tiny fireflies lighting up my sky

the big brown eyes that twinkle

with sheer delight

even the blackberry thorns

that catch me by surprise

dazzle my ears

with the sweet sound of laughter

the rich voice of a man

that sings just for me to hear

the melody of the birds

way up in the trees

and the whispers I can feel

against my cheek

dazzle my heart

with the goodness I keep finding

scattered in the most unlikely places

love that crosses miles and reaches across boundaries

dazzle me with the way

things taste

chocolates melting on my tongue

the Americano in my cup

a well cooked meal

margaritas and wine

dazzle my senses

the calloused hand in mine

vibrations on an old wood floor

soft as silk baby skin

hugs so tight I almost can’t breathe

by the music’s rhythm

 that makes me move in unison

and the way I feel

when my hands glide down

someone else

finally be held

feel myself exhale 

at long last

let me be dazzled

and then reflective

just like the poem

that my far away friend sent

❤Jeanna’ Mead

7 03 a.m.  1-29-18

http://www.jeannasoul.com

For Joshua and Bubbie 💗👣

writers with soul

Deaf and Blind

I’ll just come right out and say it as clear as I can.  

I’m deaf and blind.

I was told, “Jeanna’,don’t be blinded.” because I disagreed with several women in a post about knowing the heart of another person.

Well, when well-meaning, holy rollers start quoting scripture and verse, claiming to know what the “real truth” is then I’m going to pull on my boots, walk away and let them think they had the last word.

But the truth is, I’m really just choosing to be deaf and blind.

Blind to the self-righteous accusations and finger-pointing. Blind to the veiled questions,the double standards,the hypocrisy that I see all too often.

I’m going to be deaf-really deaf to the words that slander and tear apart people, to the gossip disguised as prayers, to the nay-sayers that are so quick to point out another’s wrongs while sugar coating their own.

Lord, have mercy, I believe in those words written in red, especially those that command very clearly to “love one another as I have loved you.” and all those about how God created heaven and earth and all that is within it. 

I can’t quote scripture by chapter and verse and I’m impressed but not intimidated by those that can.  You see, God gives each of us different gifts- some get the gift of memorizing and others get the gift of touch, some people get the gift of vision and others the gift of understanding and so on and on.

Back before Christmas, I was listening to this preacher man and he pulled up this verse and i decided right then and there that verse was going to be my verse.

It’s Luke 2:19…and here it goes.

“Mary held these things in her heart and thought about them often.”

Well, there you go- clear and simple. “Held these things in her heart.”

That tells me that we can hold things in our hearts-without broadcasting on social media,without tattle-telling, without making a big scene and pushing our beliefs on others.

We can hold what really matters in our hearts and think about it often. We can hold the things we wrestle with and the things we pray about in our hearts. We can hold it, think about it and know that God in the heavens knows our hearts far better than we do.

We can choose to love more, to find the goodness in people, to seek out the beauty and radiance and to be deaf and blind to anything that takes away from that.

I can’t claim, like those women did, to know the heart of anyone else.  While they claimed that the woman they were jumping on didn’t KNOW God, all I could think was this- “God knows HER” and that’s the bottom line, only God knows what each of us holds in our hearts, only God knows how much we love,who we love and how we feel and that’s good enough for me.

I will hold these things in my  heart, and write the words that come tumbling out  and I know that I may be accused of being blind and deaf but I sure won’t be accused of not loving and in the end that’s all that’s necessary.

So I’ll leave you with a song that came to mind…take it away…..

https://open.spotify.com/track/1oxxjnha9ceWHO443oSVRk?si=HBtbrZdYRoKn-yjYvgMGnw

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Glow

If only I could see me

the way you see me

everything would be different
I keep the lights on

because the darkness

hides your lips

and I can’t, 

for the life of me,

 understand a word you say
But the same light 

that lets me see

to read

shows everything 

I wish I could keep

hidden in the dark
You see my imperfections

the scars on my body

the way time hasn’t

always been so kind
it’s a double edged sword

a battle that I fight

day in and night out

trying so damn hard

to see beauty in the ages

embrace the changes

to keep on dancing

with all the broken pieces

to glow in the light

and not hide in the dark
I look in the mirror

remembering so well

when the reflection

showed a different woman

a different time
if I could only see me

the way you see me

everything would be

so different
I would look beyond

the imperfections 

straight to the heart

of the matter
and I just might be able

to glow in the dark

from the light in your eyes
💗Jeanna’ Mead

6 25 a.m. 12-10-17

http://www.jeannasoul.com