Friday, February 5, 2010

Living a Mindful Life Lesson 11: 4:44

Since I can remember, I see or notice the number 444. Sometimes it is on a digital clock in the morning or afternoon. Sometimes it is on a license plate, phone number or house. Maybe its on a dinner bill or coat check receipt. Many times I’ve woken up several days in a row right at 4:44 a.m. I thought maybe it just had something to do with my sleep cycle, but truly, I’ve often wondered at what it all meant. I went through a negative phase where I thought it meant some sort of danger or warning---like I was going to die on April, 4, 2004. (Obviously didn’t happen). Then I thought that maybe it was something good: Maybe I would win the lottery on April,4, 2004! Nope.

So before writing this blog today, I decided to do a bit of research on the number 444. I actually GOOGLED 444 to see what came up and all this numerology stuff appeared. I never thought of looking into that direction before.

The funny part is that I got a wide range of “reasons” for frequently viewing the number 444. One came from a scary sounding website called The website gave several meanings to the number but essentially it equated the 444 with God and Jesus or the first divine woman. It also states that the word “queen” is used 444 in the Bible and the female demon Lilith is a symbol for that number. Very contradictory reasons, if you ask me. You can go there to check it out.

Another website, states that the number 444 is a “sign from your spirit guides (angels) signifies their disagreement with your thoughts and feelings and can be interpreted as a Cosmic ‘No!’ to a question you have asked or ideas you might have.” So I guess when I wake up at 4:44 a.m. and think “should I get up now and work out?” The cosmic answer is “No”? I’ll definitely keep that one in mind and go back to sleep instead!

A third website I checked out states that the number 444 “is a number of healing and great blessings. ( Ahhhh, I like that interpretation much better than the demon and “No!” ones. The interpreter also expresses that when you see the number 444, it is the “universe reminding you who you are.” The site continues to say that the number means creativity, awareness and wisdom. Goes to show, if you keep searching enough, you will find an answer that speaks to you.

Before doing all this research, I had I decided that I would take 444 as a sign from the universe (read “God & his angels) telling me to slow down, take a moment, see what’s going on with me physically, emotionally, spiritually. So when I see 444, I try to take a deep yoga breath and notice what is happening at that moment. This practice helps me slow down and be more mindful of that moment. I am not telling you to start obsessing over numbers to live a more mindful life. I’m suggesting that you find a way to make it a ritual to take a moment when the universe knocks on your door. Maybe it is when you hear a certain word, or see a blue jay or go through three green lights. Set your intention that when you experience whatever it is you choose, that you will stop and listen to your intuition…your gut feeling. What do you need? What do you need to do? Where do you need to go?

Monday, February 1, 2010

Living a Mindful Life Lesson 8: Rainbow Toes

A couple of days ago I was really busy with all the busy work I thought I needed to do. My daughter had just finished painting her nails---and her fingers, a little bit on the face, and a couple of drops on the counter. She asked me if she could paint my toenails. My initial thought was "I don't have time for this.....are you kidding me...I have socks on because my feet are so cold." Her pleading, glorious face was too much so persuasive so I responded, "Sure, honey! Do what you want: you are the designer of the toes!"

I thought she would pick red (my favorite color) or pink (her favorite color. Instead, she surprised me. She put together a little game where I would pick different colors out of a bowl and that would determine what color she would paint. In the end, I had thee happy rainbow toes! I've never had rainbow toes and I have to say that they make me really happy. I haven't worn socks around the house since so I can look down at them.

With the dark, winter weather, it is so nice to simply look down and see a colorful rainbow!
During this mindful moment, I took a chance on something new that I really didn't want to do. And in the end, not only was I pleasantly surprised, but I also experienced bringing unselfish joy to someone else. Next time when someone suggests a simple something you initially don't want, take a mindful moment and decide if it is really worth it not to do it. Chances are, you'll be glad you did.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Living a Mindful Life Lesson 7: In Search for Unconditional Love

I know, I know, I should've posted a picture of my family here. This morning, my sweet Morgan, my Golden Retriever puppy, was such a lover girl I had to pick her for the photo shoot.
Love is a tricky thing. Different cultures have different words for different kinds of love. If I was an expert linguist, I would give examples here, but, alas, I'm not. Google it if you are interested. In English, we only have "love" to mean a whole hoard of things from loving french fries to loving a band and loving your grandmother.
In a mindful life, the most purest of love is unconditional love. This love endures unchanged regardless of the situation. If you are lucky in life you have at least one person, or even breathing being, who loves you no matter what. That's what is so great about dogs: you can scold them one minute for chewing up a kitchen chair and the next she is showering you with snuggles and kisses.
The challenge is not to abuse this special gift. I have very few people in my life that I can count on my fingers who I know love me unconditionally. Thank God I can count my parents and my husband among them. In my mindful living epiphany today, I realize that I need to hold these relationships above all other. Sure I have great friends, loving family members and some good acquaintances. But it is these handful of people in my life who continue to love and support me through good and bad. It is these people that I vow to hold close to my chest and protect like baby birds. This honor of unconditional love is special and worth safeguarding for life.