Coral’s Healing Room at Coralsblog.com 505-269-9242 iwritetohealmyself@gmail.com I rise early. I go to bed early. If you need me, I will make myself available to you.

Talking about love in action…

Good morning everyone! I hope you are off to a great Friday, in preparation for your weekend! I am headed to an appointment with my PCP this morning, so I ask for your love and prayers, that we can get my pain managed. I am about to literally go out of my fucking mind in all of this pain. Post op with my surgeon is Wednesday morning. That’s all I’ve got right now, which will hopefully be enough to resolve this.

I know a lot of you are struggling with something also. I send you all of my love and prayers. I believe that we have the power to lift one another up. We have the means to lighten someone else’s load, even just a little bit, don’t we? We have the resources to find ways to help others. We must stand united or fall to pieces divided.

I find myself avoiding the news at all costs. I feel like every time I watch it, it’s all about who I don’t want to be. Every time I see the pain and the loss and the struggle and  I watch Children being brutalized, I begin to feel helpless. Never hopeless, and seldom helpless, when I am though, I feel debilitated. I must be in action to do my work. My work is loving you and I sure do love you!

There will always be skeptics and may-sayers, who will tell me otherwise, and yet, the more I think about it, the more obvious and the more simple things become…I am love. My life’s work is love. My calling is to embrace, teach, model and accept love…to learn love and to love how I want to love and who I want to love. My calling, my work, my passion…spreading love to everyone. Sure, I would love to be an author and I will be. I am an artist. Those things are tools to spread my love. Once I simplified it…it became crystal clear to me…my work is love.

My view of and definition of and even my modeling of love has not always been loving. Being in love seemed reserved for romantic endeavors and lovers. Loving someone and saying so has always seemed to make people uncomfortable. How can you possibly love everyone? I don’t know. The more time that passes though, I love everyone more and more. I want people to know, more and more, that I love them. My dear friend shared a story with me, which I will paraphrase, which essentially said that you can love everyone with all of your heart!! I was SO fucking stoked the day I learned that! I thought that “All of my heart” could only really be used for one person. Another love delusion of my past. Being in love…what is being in love to you? So, as I sit here and look at my life, I have never loved wrong. I never loved the wrong people or wasted my love on them. Misguided does not invalidate all of the love I felt and tried to share. I am here simply because I never gave up on love.

My life’s calling is love. My work is love. Our Sanctuary is love. I hope that my love never made you feel uncomfortable. I mimicked what I saw and I did my best to make it beautiful and right and kind. I offered what I had, which was all of me at the time. I fell short. My love wasn’t always loving. I can promise you this though…the love was always in my heart for you. I don’t love my dogs in the same way that you love your dogs, do I? Does that mean that I love them less, because I don’t love them like you do? Does it mean that you love your dogs less if you do not love your dogs like I love mine? I think not. Truly, love is not really right or wrong. My expression of love and your expression of love may not be the same, and isn’t that fucking wonderful? Truly, love is infinite and loves potential is limitless. Diversity in love, as in life, makes the experience all the richer; don’t you agree?

So, if I tell you that I love you, I fucking mean it. I am really in a place of modeling love more than I speak love. Love is an action word and a verb. Love is action. Dr King speaks about this in a way that makes sense to me.

I took this excerpt from an article by Ruth Haley Barton, titled The Soul of leadership: Part 3 Love in Action

Where the Real Action Is

As it turns out, love is where the real action is, spiritually speaking. Love in action is doing what God calls us to do when he calls us to do it—no matter how afraid we are or how ill-equipped we feel. It is the willingness to move beyond being concerned primarily for our own safety and survival to the confidence that comes from knowing that our real life is hidden with Christ in God no matter what happens to our physical life.

Love in action is doing the right thing, at the right time, in the right Spirit, completely given over to a Power that is beyond our own—even, and perhaps most especially, when the risks are very great. This kind of action is impossible without being radically in touch with that perfect love which casts out fear. Such risky action is impossible until we stop hesitating and give in to the authority of an invisible God.[iii]

Real action is not about the absence of fear; it is the courage to look fear in face and master it through love. Dr. King (by his own admission) was often very much afraid but he chose courage which he defined as “the power of life to affirm itself in spite of life’s ambiguities.  This requires the exercise of a creative will that enables us to hew out a stone of hope from a mountain of despair.”[iv]

This kind of love-directed action is not about our natural preferences.  As King once said, “I don’t march because I like it.  I march because I must.” It is not about our own personal safety; after King went public with his convictions, he was never safe again from a human point of view. It is not about what seems humanly possible. It is about saying yes to the God with whom all things are possible and doing whatever we do in union with God. “Neither God nor man will individually bring the world’s salvation. Rather, both man and God, made one in a marvelous unity of purpose through an overflowing love as the free gift of Himself on the part of God and by perfect obedience and receptivityon the part of man, can transform the old into the new.”[v]

Love worth Celebrating

Dr. King’s commitment to the moral ethic of love enabled him to envision and articulate a way forward that involved meeting violence and oppression with nonviolent resistance, combatting real fear with profound courage, and confronting social evil with soul force.  This love is not to be confused with sentimental slop; it is creative, redemptive goodwill toward all people—including (and perhaps most especially) one’s enemies. In the depths of his being he knew that “returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars.  Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that.  Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”[vi]

And so he chose the way of love—love in action—and that made all the difference.

I love you and I hope you have a beautiful Friday! My challenge to each of us is to be love in action. Love with all you’ve got and share it with everyone! Love deeply and enjoy the swim. Love openly and be amazed at the love that comes back. Let’s go do some loving, shall we?

In closing, I ask again, that you send all of your love to my little friend Aiden this morning. Aiden, we are all surrounding you with love and healing light. I love you Aiden!

Celebrating Martin Luther King Jr…

“One has not only a legal but a moral responsibility to obey just laws. Conversely, one has a moral responsibility to disobey unjust laws.”

Just laws…”a moral responsibility to obey just laws….” this says a lot to me…we know what is just and what is not…what is right and what is wrong…we know these things…

We live in a world full of supposed to…of shoulds and should nots…and we follow blindly, without questioning what we don’t believe in…

We witness injustice…we witness atrocities…we engage in complacency and we accept substandard…

I see injustice daily…just yesterday, a Mom and Dad, layering their two small children with clothes, as they stole them and pulled the tags off…right in the middle of menswear…layer after layer, stealing and putting the merchandise on their kids, up their sleeves…under their kids in the cart, of soon to be, stolen merchandise….

I don’t know why, but at first, I was in disbelief. Tamara went to go and get an associate…I just stood there and watched the shit show, and then we went over…right in the middle of them, and they didn’t miss a beat, didn’t stop or try to hide what they were doing…kept layering those poor kids with stolen shit…

I was angry…Tamara and the other bystanders were angry, as we all made our way to the register, to pay for our shit, which has a higher price tag now, because of people like this, doing things like this…entitled to take whatever they want…you bet your ass I was pissed…

I was not nearly as pissed or angry, as I was sad, for those poor children. I worked in retail, for a few years and did some undercover loss prevention…and I followed a lady out of the store, about 400 pounds, kid in the cart…she walked through the exit door, I grabbed the cart and played tug of war with her, all the way back in the store…I finally pulled hard enough and pulled she and the cart back across the threshold…at which point, APD apprehended her…took her to the back…child in tow…it was a horrible thing to witness and be part of…

This woman, only came back into the store, because I dragged her, kicking and screaming, by her cart, because her kid was in it…screaming obscenities and yelling horrible threats to me…and it was only then, that she was in fact shoplifting…because she left the store…

We took her to the back and I was the female present, as they began to unlayer this woman…that 400 pounds, was stolen merchandise…in actuality, she weighed about 110 pounds…the other “weight” was about $1200-$1500 of stolen merchandise.

These are parents, using their children, as fucking decoys, diversions…distractions…while their parents teach them how to take what is not theirs…fucking sad…heartbreaking…

Shoplifters are not shoplifting until they leave the store…not even if they are taking off tags and layering themselves and their children, with brand new merchandise, all the way through the store…no one can do anything to them, until they leave…which is what the associate told Tamara…there is nothing we can do…

Unjust? I think so…Tamara thought so…and we said something, to them, to the associate, to the manager…we must not be silent and complacent…

These people knew exactly what they were doing and this was not their first rodeo of wrangling whatever they wanted and having their small children carry it for them…and how sad, we thought, for the children…

And this quote, and this experience, brought me to this amazing quote, that I have always loved…

“If a man is called to be a street sweeper, he should sweep streets even as Michelangelo painted,or Beethoven composed music, or Shakespeare wrote poetry. He should sweep streets so well that all the hosts of heaven and earth will pause to say, here lived a great street sweeper who did his job well.”

We are all here, on this journey together, walking each other home…and we all have work to do…

Your work is different from my work, and my work, so very different from yours…and no matter what that work is, shouldn’t we always strive, to do our work, the best we can?

I work on the animals I am entrusted with, just as I work on our animals…with all of my heart…I love them as I love our animals and I want, for them, the same that I want for all of ours…quality of life, safety, good health and happiness…contentment and warmth and food and water and shelter…

I have been doing this kind of work since 2008…when I turned in my bar keys, my late nights and dangerous and depressing career…and decided to work in healing…I went to massage school…just like that, I changed my career path…

And just like that, again, a few years later, I changed from healing work on human clients, to healing work on animals. I took my seat on the dog beds and floors of clients homes everywhere…under dining room tables and baby grand pianos…to do my work, with all of my heart…

Unfortunately, in this process, I have struggled with valuing myself. I have done as much, if not more, pro bono, volunteer and comp work…work at discounted rates…than I have been paid for…

I would love to do what I do, every day, all the time…without having to charge for it…and I have tried, so hard, to make my rates reasonable, my work speak for itself…to Be Beethoven and Michelangelo in my work, to create masterpieces…to facilitate amazing healing…to be a vessel for God to work through, to provide healing, for everyone, whether you can afford me of not…

Here is what I have found…people afford what they want to afford…they pay for what they have to pay for…clients go to the vet, and get billed, usually fairly astronomically, and they pay it, and then they cannot pay me…and I have accepted that, for years…until now…

This quote, this day…this great man, Martin Luther King Jr…he has a dream…I have a dream too…

I have a dream that we live in a world of love…of compassion and respect…of fairness and justness…that we all do all we can, always, to lighten each other’s load…that each one of us will be love…and do what is right, even when no one is looking…whatever you do, do it with all of your heart…and if it’s your work…charge appropriately for your work, that you may feel good about who you are and what you do in this world…

This has been my most difficult obstacle, since I realized my gift…charging for it and charging appropriately, and always getting paid, on time….my full rate…without having to ask for it…I have struggled so much with this, that I just let it go and assume that whomever it is, must need the money more than me…and I let it go…only I guess I haven’t let it go, because here I am, blogging about it…

Anyway, that is my work…to value myself, charge accordingly…and to say no when my gut tells me to say no…

I am on a mission, in this new year, to do my work, with all of my heart…and to bill for my work, with all of my heart…I want to feel as good about doing my work as my clients feel after having my work done and for me, that means getting paid…accepting gratuity…and saying no, so that I can say yes, to people who value me, in the whole spectrum of my work, which includes my quality of life…and my quality of life relies heavily upon me being able to pay my own bills…

So, thank you Martin Luther King Jr…for the quotes, which inspired my words..which I am sending out to the universe, with all of my love…

I send this writing, and all of its content, back to the universe, to be used where it is needed and to be recycled, where it is not needed, for the highest good of us all…

Happy Birthday Martin Luther King Jr…thank you for your amazing words, your compassion, your inspiration and your amazing vision…for your love and your ability to speak where we can hear you…thank you!