Tuesday, April 28, 2009

That Elusive Inspiration....and Passion

Writing is a process that I will surrender to without needing a result. The process of writing, the very act of putting pen to paper, is the very thing that will set my dreams in motion. I can't sit around waiting for inspiration to knock me over the head; I must just write regardless of what I write. The only way to get there is to start. I must stop needing it to look a certain way but simply honor the process and the fact that I must write, I can't not write. And I will write about whatever comes at the time, not waiting for a big idea. The big idea is that there isn't one! I live inside my head too much, as a loving friend often tells me. Writing helps to get out of my head and connect to my feelings.
So, what am I feeling? I feel good after running today. My body is slightly tingly like there is a soft electrical current running through it. I feel a bit uneasy in my heart. I miss the romance of my younger years. Those butterflies in the stomach, weak in the knees kind of feelings. Will I ever get those again? I am forty now and my romantic self is rusty from disuse. The hinges on the gate to my heart are rusty and stuck. I need the oil of passion and tenderness to open the gate, to loosen the bolt and unlock my heart. Will this be mine? Or will I slide into old age a rusty woman who only feels inside my mind?
And yes, I am happily married. Husband and I celebrate 21 years this summer. Which is exactly my point. After 21 years, how do we keep the passion alive amidst three children (two of whom are teenagers...nuff said), bills, work, home maintenance, not to mention friends, dogs and a horse? I am on this road with a partner. I am so happy about that. But there are days, friends; lets all admit it; when the bloom is so far off the rose of this marriage that all that is left is a sad, dry, dusty stem.
My mission is to regain this spark, find those butterflies again and walk out a passionate love affair for the next twenty years. Or more. Stay tuned.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Montreal Millennium Summit

Well, another great trip to Montreal. Our friend, Daniel, hosts the Montreal Millennium Summit every year and it is our privilege to attend. It is a meeting of the minds regarding the UN's millennium development goals, in order to eradicate poverty by 2015. Kind of a 'check up' to see how we are doing, how far we have come and what still needs to be done.
The day is all about raising awareness, and of course the more high profile people you have the more attendance you get. Well, the conference was sold out so I guess there's your answer! Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York , Mia Farrow, Val Kilmer, Nick Clooney, the VP of Starbucks, plus the first Muslim woman to receive the Nobel Peace Prize, and many more activists and politicians graced the stage.
The most inspiring and touching presentations were by Mia Farrow, who travels to Darfur several times a year and always brings heart wrenching photos to show, and Sarah Ferguson, who tirelessly works for a mind-boggling number of charities to help children around the world.
I need to constantly have the plights of children and the poor in front of me, so that I may unflinchingly know and feel the horrors that are going on in places like Darfur, or Uganda. With knowledge comes responsibility, and we are called to action when we understand. What is our unique call to action? That must be determined for oneself. The overwhelming message of this years conference was to do something, no matter how small. If we all do our one small thing, this world will be a better place and we will be far closer to reaching the MDG's than if we wait for everyone else to do it. Sponsor a child. Travel to a third world country. Help your neighbour. Volunteer at the food bank. Write about your experiences. Tell people. We must dig our heads out from the sand and stare poverty in the face and be changed. And then change the world.