“Your playing small does not serve the world.
There is nothing enlightened about shrinking
so that other people won't feel insecure around you.
We are all meant to shine, as children do.”
~ Marianne Williamson
Come sit down. Make yourself comfortable. If it was winter I would tell you to go ahead curl up on the couch, with a soft cuddly blanket to keep you warm, and I would serve you some hot Moroccan mint tea, my favorite. However in my neck of the woods it is summer and we are in the midst of our annual triple digit days. So instead I will invite you to sit in a lounge chair in our backyard, and you can put your feet in the cool water of our kiddie pool, while we enjoy some cold ice tea together.
Now that you are settled in I want to share with you how round these Cosmic Cowgirl parts we have been discussing the topic perspective. I have two very simple points of view to present about life perspectives:
The first one is: Life’s too short not to wear a red boa.
The second one is: We are all meant to shine!
You may have giggled when I told you that life is too short not to wear a red boa. Quite a few people do. You may have even laughed when I surprised you by draping a red boa around your shoulders. The other possibility is that you looked at me like I wasn’t quite all there, wondering what was up with this red boa thing.
Well, the philosophy of The Red Boa, as I like to refer to it in short, is about having more fun and enjoying life more in the present. Now this approach to life may come easily to some folks. There are people with naturally positive, happy and laid back attitudes. However, I recognize that for some individuals this way of being can be very foreign and it can take some actual effort at first to practice at lightening up. There are also plenty of people who, like myself, fall somewhere in the middle of that spectrum. Of course there are always going to be tough life experiences that come along now and again and can make it tough to see the brighter side to things. There are a number of things that can help us all to keep perspective about this thing called life. The first one, while it may seem a bit morbid, it is to remember that this thing called life is not a permanent gig that will last forever. Every single one of us on this planet has an expiration date, it may be many years from now, or it may arrive sooner than that. The reality can be uncomfortable to consider, but when taken into consideration can help us keep things in perspective.
Let me assure you that I don’t walk around with rainbows shooting out of my ears, sprinkling happy glitter while I skip through city streets nor do I have birds and friendly animals scampering around me while I sing angelically in a forest. On occasion I do wear glitter and truth be told I may bust a move while cleaning the house, especially if a band like the Gipsy Kings is playing.
Sometimes my life feels grand and sometimes I want to scream “get me out of here.” Many wonderful things have occurred in my time here on planet earth. My life has been full of abundance and I always try to be grateful for all that I have. My life has also been affected by tragic and deep loss and I have even experienced depression. A few years ago in fact I went through what I describe as a dark night of the soul. Yet somehow I have always managed to return to what I call a sunshine spot. Sometimes the return trip to my sunshine spot is quick and I stay there for an extended period of time. Sometimes I can’t find my way back there for a long time, and those are the hardest times of course. I won’t delve into all the details of my soul’s story right now, but I believe there is much we can learn from one another’s life stories. Especially when brave souls come forth to share how they triumphed over adversity and chose to rise above it all.
Perhaps even after the introduction to The Red Boa philosophy you are still asking yourself “But why a red boa?” I am here to tell you that wearing a feather red boa can be transformative. There is something about a feather boa that is sassy, playful, mischievous, sexy and a little bit wild. If the thought of being “wild” sounds a little intimidating consider what reknowned writer Clarissa Pinkola Estes, Ph.D writes about the “wild woman” in her introduction to Women Who Run with the Wolves:
"Within every woman there is a wild and natural creature, a powerful force, filled with good instincts, passionate creativity, and ageless knowing. Her name is Wild Woman, but she is an endangered species. Though the gifts of the wildish nature come to us at birth, society's attempt to "civilize" us into rigid roles has plundered this treasure, and muffled the deep, life-giving messages of our own souls. Without Wild Woman, we become over-domesticated, fearful, uncreative, trapped."
If you do not yet own a feathered boa add it to your shopping list right now. Then make up reasons to wear it. For example, on my 30th birthday (which unbelievably was 13 years ago) I had my birthday party at a roller skating rink. My family and friends requested lots of disco music (think Michael Jackson Off The Wall) and a few of us even wore feathered boas while skating. I for one, am the owner of a rather fabulous collection of feather boas. I often incorporate them into Halloween costumes too. There is the flamingo pink boa, the fire red and orange boa, the parrot rainbow boa, as well as boas in simple black, red, green and blue. The photo collage (top left and then counter clockwise) above features me as "Fire," a rainbow parrot with my twin kittens, a pink flamingo, and then see how I use the rainbow one for decoration by framing a mirror in my art room.
The reality is that I am a regular run-of-the-mill woman. I have my low melancholy times, I get angry and feel impatient. My figure will never walk a fashion show runway and from time to time I even have (gasp) bad hair days. Yet, underneath there is also my wild woman, who occasionally howls at the moon, has danced in a bar cage and in the rain in Paris, and will when needed (or just for the hell of it) break out the glitter and feathers to help me keep that Red Boa perspective.
that red boa,
fling it round
in your stride
in the tickle
of the feathers
feel your skin
oh how good
it is to be you
one of a kind
a singular creation
What do you do or could you do to stay in touch with your wild woman?
How do you keep perspective (or your cool), if you even do, when the shit hits the fan?
Do you own a feathered boa? If not, what are you waiting for??