Chapter 1: Presence

October 16th, 2018

Chapter 1: Presence 

Good morning, good afternoon, and good evening. I hope where ever this email finds you, you are experiencing some state of your natural being: of peace, of ease, of bliss.

You are receiving this email because you signed up for my newsletters and I would just like to say: Thank you. Thank you for choosing to be here. Thank you for choosing to connect with me. I am so grateful you are here.

I am currently sitting in a coffee shop, drinking an earl gray tea latte, while a sweet jazzy song plays in the background. The song was so sweet, I had to “shazam” it, which I guess is officially a word in my vocabulary. Check out “Lay Down” by Son Little for some chill af vibes.

Let’s catch up.
As some of you know, my daughter and I recently moved to Santa Cruz, CA. A month and a half ago our car was fully packed, our storage unit was full, and we were leaving our home of three years which just so happened to be my hometown. I didn’t have much clarity on where we would end up, I just knew deep in my heart it was time to move on.
Two friends of mine, one in Santa Cruz, one in San Francisco, opened their homes to us initially. The original plan was to stay with each for two weeks max, giving me 4-weeks to figure out what was next. It took a lot of practice to get to this point, but I was completely trusting of the universe at this time. I knew the stars would align and after a month of being hosted, I would know which direction to go.
Well, as life likes to have it, everything shifted in an unexpected yet beautiful way. Our friends here in Santa Cruz opened up their hearts and their home to my daughter and I for the remainder of this year, allowing us to settle for much longer than I had expected. I think I cried everyday for our first month. I have been entirely overwhelmed with gratitude and in disbelief that this is our reality. Let me paint you a picture of our current living situation…
Three adults, three kids under the age of 4, two dogs, and one toilet. YEP. Beautiful chaos as I like to say. Absolute, beautiful fucking chaos.
I don’t have any idea where we will be come December/January, but that doesn’t worry me. I am practicing being here right now, which leads me to my next story.

This theme has presented itself a lot over the last year in my life. The simple, yet extremely challenging practice of presence.
What would it be like to drop the chronic conceptualizing?
To not constantly have your next move figured out?
To simply just experience what life is offering?
What would it be like to just fucking be here without all the complexity?
We constantly hear, read, and say, ‘be present’ but honestly?
We, as humans, are fucking terrible at it.
We are doers.
Thinkers.

Conceptualizers.
Contemplators.
And while that is beautiful part of the human experience, it also makes me wonder: At what point do we let go of the DO and just BE?
That is where my curiosity currently lives. I am observing myself as I naturally begin to conceptualize and make sense of a situation, be it past or future. I am acknowledging my default pattern and then asking myself “do I really need to do this? Do I actually need an answer right now?”
What I am finding is that the answer is no. I don’t need to analyze this right now. I don’t need to plan out future dialogue or actions. I don’t need to constantly have answers and wise realizations.
I can just give myself permission to experience the mystery of life as I travel through it. Permission granted. And what a relief. To give myself permission to literally flow through life just as I flow through my dance practice. No choreography. No attachment to outcome. Just me and the mystery and my awareness of it all as I experience it.

Now my dear friend, I have some encouragement for you. Try this practice with your self, first. I encourage you to sit for a few moments with your eyes closed. Check in with your self. Observe your breath. Observe your physical body. Observe your mind. Observe your heart. What is currently present? What do you feel? Can you observe what is happening without any additional story-telling (i.e. “i feel this way because…”)? Can you observe what is happening without any judgement? Can you observe what is happening without analyzing, conceptualizing, or making sense of it? Can you just let what is present within you BE there? Is it possible?

Let me know. Share your experience with me. Share a story with me. Share a reflection with me. I am all ears (and eyes). This is a two-way connection.

Oh, and in case you needed this reminder, because often I too forget, you always have your breath. Your breath is your greatest tool. When you feel disconnected to this life, to your self, observe your breath. Re-connect with self through breath. Guide yourself back home. You always have that power.

With so much Gratitude,
Bree Irene Gwinner