VOICE

 

 

This poem is for every person,

who is scared, that there may not be

something even better out there.

There is.

Fly!

T

**********

When the heart is in your throat,

Where does your voice go?

I wonder, darling,

Do you love me enough,

to let me go?

To let me be?

To leave me in my flight of life?

 

The truth is so clear to me:

What we had was special,

Deep,

Real,

Sweet…

And bittersweet.

 

But I taste the lack of lifetime in it,

Every time I think of it.

Of you…

Even though I know,

You still haven’t fully let go of it,

of me.

 

It’s not something I can help you do,

It’s a choice;

An understanding and respect of love.

A knowing that one must let go of a love,

Because love is free,

And everlasting.

 

Perhaps it’s not easy for you to see this,

but I must let you know:

Daffodils bloom,

only in springtime.

Just like my love for you,

It bloomed only once.

Our love, was never my lifetime.

 

We are done now,

Have been for a while,

So let it go;

Let me be.

I am a bird in the sky.

I was meant to be free.

 

I hope you figure out

your own flight,

and soar the skies,

enjoy the horizons.

It’s beautiful up here.

Believe me.

 

Go on, love.

We are both free.

 


My 5th…

Photo © T.Nikic 2014

Photo © T.Nikic 2014

On the 15th of August 2009, I followed through with a decision I had made which had ended a reality, that for me, I did not fully understand how it came to be. I mean I had understood that the choices I had made actually contributed to it, but it seemed like something you’d see in a movie or a music video or something not real life, and definitely not MY life….

On that day, five years ago, I had moved out from the apartment I had shared with my ex boyfriend. It was a space I had tried to make into a home, but I was sharing it with someone who did not understand what that means, and I’m not sure he quite experienced HOME, in the full sense of the word, himself. This person, who I had spent two and a half years of my life with up until that day I moved out five years ago (the last 11 months of which we shared that space together), contributed to the misery and terror of the energy that space carried. I did not know what a mature, mindful, nurturing, adult relationship should look like, nor did he. My perception and understanding of love was absolutely skewed and his was very superficial. But I had wanted a home outside of what my parents had provided at that time (no it was not bad, I was simply ready to leave) and I had chosen him because….because I was young, and stubborn, and felt like I had something to prove to somebody, and because I was in my mid 20s which meant I should be in a stable relationship and think about marriage and kids and a house….but also because I was stuck on all of those ‘wants’ and I just went with the guy who seemed to have been really into me.

I had ignored all the signs which said “this guy is lost and hurt, and he will hurt you”. I ignored the proof that the universe was sending my way to warn me that this guy is not a person of heart, integrity, honesty or truth. (But who am I kidding – back then, neither was I – I was lying to my Self the entire time.) I ignored those signs because I wanted what I wanted and that was that. I don’t need to tell you the details of that situation for you to truly relate to it, do I? You’ve been there too. We all get there at some point. And then something happens and we snap our Self back to reality. I awakened to the reality of my life not long before the day I had moved out. As soon as you know better, you start to do better. My ‘better’ at that time, was to leave, which was the right thing to do. But I didn’t bargain on all the Self work that I had to do since then.

 

I’ve not been in a serious relationship after that one. It has taken me five years of soul-searching, of getting to my truth, of growth, of learning, of dealing with my past (and unexpectedly with other issues I was not aware of), to become a human being I am proud of. I love me. I respect me. I honour my soul, my spirit, my heart, my mind, but most importantly, I have learned to not just listen to my intuition but to follow it and allow it to guide me. Yes, it took me five years to do all of that. It takes a long time to return to your Self after you lose yourSelf and allow someone to break you down. It’s not about anyone else’s journey or experience that we have to live out, but our own.

 

My return back to self involved many incredible travel experiences (including India, a solo trip to Europe and a few other destinations), great books by human beings who have also gone through turmoil in their life (Maya Angelou, Paulo Coelho, Brenda Shoshanna, David Richo, Bell Hooks, Rumi, Sonia Sanchez, Pablo Neruda, just to name a few), teachers and lessons who came in forms of strangers and friends sometimes, a great counselor who provided therapy that was right for me, and as part of my human experience, I also made some bad decisions from which I had chosen to learn from.  The biggest returns to my Self involved starting this blog and sharing my love journey with the world (so to speak) through writing and poetry, my engagement in the poetry community via performances, and my rediscovery for my love of arts, being creative and painting. I really spent time with me, getting to know me, facing the mirror and stepping up to the ownership of MY being.

 

Solitude is necessary for getting to know one’s Self after going through any experience where one has lost their Self. Read again: Solitude is necessary for getting to know one’s Self after going through any experience where one has lost their Self. Just once more: Solitude is necessary for getting to know one’s Self after going through any experience where one has lost their Self. I’m not saying withdraw from the world and become a monk (although for some, that is what they feel they have to do), but really spend quality time with YOU without any stimulants or distractions. Yes, it can be painful and hard, but YOU are worth your journey back to YOUR SELF. And let’s face it – it is YOUR work to be completed by YOU.

 

As much as solitude is necessary, we have to be mindful of the fact that we are our relationships. Translation: the circle of people around me changed as I got back to me. And that was perfectly okay. Sometimes, we outgrow people, sometimes they remove themselves from our life, and at other times, we remove our Self from their life. So long as I engaged with others always with the intention of learning something from that interaction, the ‘goodbye’ wasn’t sad, and was often simply organic and necessary. Letting go of what no longer makes sense, is part of our return to self, too. That may include some friendships and relationships.

 

The greatest thing that I can say, has happened during these last five years for me, is the understanding that the essence of our spirit, is love. My return to love truly allowed my soul to soar and reach incredible heights. I am so glad that I didn’t give up on my Self, and as tough as I have been on me, I really like and love, me. And that was the point of all of this.

 

 

Much thanks to every soul who was a part of my journey thus far. I love you.

Fly, love!

T


EXIT

I’ve been practicing Bikram hot yoga (at Bikram Hot Yoga Center ) since September 2009. Not consistently or as frequently as I’d have liked to, but nevertheless, I feel that it has been challenging, engaging and beneficial enough to my body, spirit and overall well-being, that I’ve attended the 90-minute classes (held in a  40 degree Celsius room of about 40 percent humidity), for almost five years. And it’s no small feat to captivate my interest for that long – I LOVE being challenged and this yoga practice is very challenging.

 

I receive the BYC email newsletter and in the most recent one, I saw that two intermediate classes with music were added to the schedule. With music, captivated me. In fact, when I went to practice a few days ago, I asked a teacher if I’d be eligible to take it, and when he said yes, I immediately made the commitment to my Self, and to him, to attend.

 

Today, was the very first class offered at an intermediate level with music at BYC. Was I excited? Yes. Was I nervous? Yes. Was I scared? Absolutely! Even after all those Bikram yoga classes I’ve attended, I still did not feel as if I could always get into the deepest expressions of some of the postures nor have I ever done a head stand. But I stuck to with music and that helped me calm my nerves down…a little bit.

 

Unlike regular Bikram yoga classes, this one did not have verbal instruction, but we all were to move in unison with our instructor. It was simply incredible to practice yoga in synergy and with music which included Hindu chants, prayers and songs of Shri, Krishna Das, as well as the music of the band Stars, Leonard Cohen, Eva Cassidy and Dan Gibson! The absence of verbal instruction and correction from the teacher made me feel more accountable to my own Self awareness – body, posture and position, as well as mind/thought and feeling. The few new postures which are a part of this class were challenging but surprisingly enough, I was able to do most of them…except for the head stand. I mean I did try to set it up, and even though it was something I’ve always wanted to be able to do, it was just too scary for me to do it on my own, for the first time, in this class.

The group of us who attended the class, were told at the very beginning to bring our mats in towards our instructor, as we were meant to be much closer together than in a regular class. Somehow my yoga mat ended up directly in front of the EXIT sign and door. After the standing series, I was faced with that EXIT sign every time I laid down for the Shavasana. I started thinking about the word itself. EXIT goes with escape, with letting go, with some form of freedom. And I realized that I did not allow my Self to EXIT my own thoughts which made me apprehensive about doing or attempting something new, something different, something scary. Although there were other things in my life this applied to, in this case, that was a head stand. Well, remember how I told you that I love challenges? I asked for some help and this is what happened:

I did it!

I did it! (Source BYC Instagram page)

I realize how powerful our thoughts are – they can help us face our fears or nurture them. I chose to literally EXIT the realm of CAN’T, with music, and some help. Like the mural at the BYC studio states: “Be afraid not of growing slowly, Be only afraid of standing still.”

 

Love,
T


Honouring Dr Maya Angelou

 

"The rose is without why, It blooms because it blooms, It cares not for itself, Ask not if it is seen"~Johannes Scheffler  (Photo © T.Nikic)

“The rose is without why,
It blooms because it blooms,
It cares not for itself,
Ask not if it is seen”~Johannes Scheffler
(Photo © T.Nikic)

June 28th will mark one month since Dr Maya Angelou’s passing. I have wanted to write this since, but I simply wasn’t ready. I suppose you could say that I needed some time to process and reflect on the lessons I gained from her books, her poetry, her wit, her wisdom, her grace.

 

This blog was inspired by her. In fact the title, ARainbowInTheClouds, was inspired by the words I heard her speak in person. The very first blog post is about the time I saw Dr Angelou speak in Toronto. (You can read it here: http://wp.me/p1AZhb-6 .)

 

I watched the live streaming of Dr Angelou’s wake on June 7th+8th at home (you can watch it here: http://new.livestream.com/wfu/angelou ). I cried through most of it. It was such a wonderful celebration of joy, which she exuded much of. There were some powerful and amazing things said about Dr Angelou which I noted.

 

“As long as we have time, we should keep the courage to begin again.”~Bill Clinton sharing what he learned from Dr Angelou.

*
“When I look at you, I am really looking at mySelf in a different costume.”~Oprah sharing what Dr Angelou taught her.

*
“Anything that diminishes a human being, diminishes all of us.”~Guy Johnson on what his mother taught him.

 

 

After her passing, I went through my own meditation and reflections of her lessons, which I did through this sketch of her:

Dr Maya Angelou Charcoal, graphite and pastel on paper

Dr Maya Angelou
Charcoal, graphite and pastel on paper

 

The greatest honour, I believe, that Dr Angelou was given at her wake is this one:

 

“Sequined in the black velvet sky of night,

shines a star with fiery hot, fire possessed,

leading all those who wish to claim what is right

to look within themselves and find their best.

Over my life shines this glorious beacon,

lighting my path through the dark shadow land.

With this as my guide

I shall not weaken my strive

to be a strong but gentle man.

Others had been led by its incandescence

to be more than mere flesh and bone.

To love and be loved is its true essence

for only the heart can change this world of stone.

Thus fortune graces me like none other

for this star,

this nova,

is my mother.”~Guy Johnson’s poem for his mother, Dr Maya Angelou

 

 

Dr Angelou, you believed that words are things which seep into everything – walls, hair, hearts, spirit. There are not enough words to express the gratitude I feel in my heart for the love, lessons, life and wisdom you shared with the world. I agree with you – courage is the most important of all the virtues. It takes courage to love, to speak the truth, to forgive, to engage in our own soul flight. As I am typing this, I am watching birds in flight, high in the sky, and I am reminded, once again, why the caged bird not only sings, but is free – we all are, when we learn how to fly the wings of our soul, our spirit. Thank you.

Love,

T

 

“Love heals. Heals and liberates. I use the word LOVE, not meaning sentimentality, but a condition so strong that it may be that which holds the stars in their heavenly positions and that which causes the blood to flow orderly in our veins.”~Maya Angelou


A Page From My Journal…

 

“May 18th, 2014

 

LOVE

We search for it everywhere and when our “search” leads to people with whom “love” doesn’t last, we start to give up. I think that this is because we fail to realize that LOVE does NOT reside in another but in our own Self. The only way we are able to engage “in love” with another, is by being able to love (and practice loving) our own Self. Then the search is no longer a search. Then we live and grow, and gain the ability to recognize people (or a person) who we are able to grow with, to learn from and teach, to spend time with, exchange thoughts and ideas, resolve conflicts and situations which arise as a result of our human condition mindfully, and we then truly love. Because once we are able to recognize people who we can be naked with on a spiritual, emotional, soul and thought level, it is then and only then that we can engage in trueness of mindful relationships that include the experience of love. So our “search” for “love” is inherently a longing for a mindful partnership, a relationship with someone who we can be completely our true self with, with whom we can share and grow and BE with.

The irony is that the only way (and I believe this strongly), for us to “obtain”/experience this, is via solitude – spending time with one’s own Self, learning your own heart, mind, soul, forgiving, embracing, accepting, letting go.”

I wish you love.

T

 

Photo by T.Nikic, 2011, Rome, Italy

Photo by T.Nikic, 2011, Rome, Italy


Soul Dance

Photo © T. Nikic

Photo © T. Nikic 

*This is a true story.*

In an ‘authentic’ Thai restaurant

On Bloor street,

One day, my friend and I

were eating.

We were sharing stories

about love and relationships,

and our current hardships with/in IT.

It was then that I first heard:

“Your souls danced together!”

spoken back to me

in response to the situation I had been describing.

And it made me think about LOVE, differently.

I recalled my past experiences

and how devastated or sad I was

when some of them ended;

and I realized that it was due to the fact that

I had associated that person

OR that relationship

with a hope, or a dream,

or a future which

I had only imagined for my Self,

while not really present in each moment of that relationship,

nor truly in tune with the person whom I was in IT with.

And then I had met HIM.

I knew he was the love of my life

about three weeks in…

of course that was also about the same time

I realized that WE were not going to BE in IT -

a relationship.

In any case,

I do not wish to glorify

the tragedies which seem to follow

MY “love” LIFE

but to tell you about my

SOUL EXPERIENCE,

with the love of my life.

It happened in steps,

gradually,

but all of a sudden and all-encompassing, it seems.

We spoke for hours at a time,

always looking into each others’ eyes.

And that was important -

to always look into each others’ eyes -

because they are the doorway

through which souls are able to greet each other.

Then, there was the soul baring nakedness -

this is not a physical thing,

but a spiritual connected-ness of Self

which was proudly and gladly shared

with the other.

It is the sharing of one’s limitlessness

with the other.

During that soul baring nakedness,

each soul bares its truth via

words, energy, tears, laughter, their gaze…

whichever way is most appropriate

for that soul’s story to be told.

And the soul who is receptive of the other soul’s story,

is embracing it and experiencing it

in a non-judgmental way.

The receptive soul may even shed tears,

or engage in laughter or

neutralize or intensify the energy

of whatever the naked soul is sharing.

(Side note: both souls are spiritually naked during this soul baring nakedness.)

It is an experience of elevation,

vibrations and souls

and life and being.

It is, in certain moments,

indescribable,

but only because the souls immerse and engage completely

in the dance with one another,

thereby leaving no real memory of IT,

the soul dance,

just the knowledge that the experience

DID, in fact, actually happen.

The souls who are able to dance with one another,

also serve as mirrors to each other,

of the conditions of the other’s soul,

of the energies their soul carries,

of the work that the Self needs to do

in order to stay true to,

and enable,

the flight of their own soul.

See, souls don’t belong to the Self,

but the Self ‘belongs’ to the soul.

The EGO twists the Self

into thinking that one can achieve control

of whatever pain or demons

are embedded in one’s memory,

and the ego is what coaxes Self

into holding on to that memory -

for if the Self holds on to those things

which have once ‘hurt’ it,

those past experiences will

continue to impress the “damage”

upon the Self;

and the Self will try to unload it

onto the soul,

but the soul does not hold on

to such memories -

the soul is only capable of

recognizing and exchanging ENERGIES.

And this is how the souls which choose to

dance with one another

act as a mirror -

they disassociate the Self from the experience,

so the ego cannot tarnish or attempt to question

the authenticity of the dance.

It’s just a soul dance

between two souls

that transcends time,

which travels alongside them,

and space,

in which their Self resides.

It’s an experience unique to the two souls

which engage in it.

Last thing I will say about it,

is that the dance between two souls

can only happen if the two souls

are able to recognize one another

from a time prior to the lifetime

their current Self is in,

and engage in the soul dance courageously.

And that, ladies and gentlemen,

is the true magic of IT.

The memory

of dinner at that ‘authentic’ Thai restaurant

on Bloor street,

reminds me that

another soul recognized ‘my’ soul’s experience.

And in that moment of,

and in each moment of recalling that memory,

the warmth of my Self’s smile

reaches my soul,

and that soul dance is recalled,

not as a memory,

but an experience

whose energy ‘my’ soul will

forever carry with it.

Dance well, soul beings.

Love, T.


“You can’t have your cake and eat it too!”

Until a few days ago, I didn’t realize that this post was necessary…

I regretfully thought that it was ‘men’ who act inappropriately and without integrity when dating. My eyes were opened this week when my friend and I started chatting about relationships and dating values, and he proceeded to tell me about a girl (‘cuz when you act like one, I cannot refer to you as a woman although you’re of age) who did some things that MEN and WOMEN consider to be wrong.

There is a lot to be said about integrity and treating others with respect. You really cannot do that until you figure out who you are, what you want your life to look like and the kind of people you want to have in it. But that’s really an aside note…

As per my standard, this post will not sugar coat.

Here’s the situation: A man met a girl whom he liked and she liked him. They exchanged phone numbers and started chatting. A connection was established as well as a comfortable vibe. He asks her out on a date and she accepts. Later he finds out that the entire time they were ‘talking’, she was seeing someone else. (This story could also read “A woman met a boy whom she liked and he liked her…Later she finds out that the entire time they were ‘talking’, he was seeing someone else.”.)

Here’s the reality: THIS IS COMPLETELY UNACCEPTABLE. Do not treat others as if they are disposable. It is NOT okay. If you are seeing someone, give that relationship your full attention. If you are unsure about it, leave – you are not a tree.

Let’s look at things objectively… One, if you are involved, you have no business exchanging numbers with those who you have a non-platonic interest in/connection with. It’s basically a prelude to cheating. I am sure that you would not appreciate it if the person whom you are dating did it. Two, if you are involved, you shouldn’t be ‘talking’ to others with whom you have a non-platonic connection. It’s pretty much cheating because you are allowing someone new in your life and you’re not focusing on the relationship you’re already involved in. Again, imagine if the person you are seeing did that with others behind your back. Three, if you are involved and someone is showing interest in you, you are accountable to yourself, the person you are already involved with AND the person who is interested in you, to disclose to them the fact that you are involved. It is YOUR responsibility to disclose that information. Don’t hide behind the infamous “well you never asked,” followed by *shrugged shoulders*. You knew you were doing something wrong. Four, this type of behaviour must stop. Our society is losing basic relationship values because they are no longer being shown, practiced and taught by those who date.

Each of us should ask ourselves these questions: What kind of relationship do I want to have with another person? How do I want to feel within the realm of that relationship? What values are really important for me to have in a relationship? I bet if each person was true to their heart, being cheated on, dealing with their partner’s inappropriate behaviours and being made to feel disrespected and disposable would NOT make that list. And if that isn’t how we want our relationships to look like, then we need to act accordingly. After all, the energy that we put out into the universe, does end up coming back to us. We must be mindful of that.

I think that often, those who are seeing someone but are secretly talking to other people, show a lot of insecurity because they need to know that they are desired by many people. But the truth is, desirability by others should not be the driving factor of whom you spend time with or talk to or the number of people you talk to. I think we each owe our Self, our relationship and our society to really spend time alone and understand Self before venturing out and dating. Period. We should know what we want in a partner and be clear about it upfront.

What are you doing with your life?

T

 


Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 528 other followers

%d bloggers like this: