My Blue Valentine

I see you in the ocean
Turquoise ignites my eyes
Every single drop
Love can only multiply
Despite physical absence
It's merely our perception
Building changing growing
Since this karmic inception
In the deep deep blue
I still feel you
In the wilderness
I see you
The wind howling
I hear you
Whispering in my ear
'have no fear
my dear
I'm always here'
For we are all one
Woven of the same thread
Forget what you've been taught
Love everyone instead
Our minds have never mattered
Thoughts of separation leave us scattered
Back into the grid the cosmic map
Escaping negative patterns
We can all be free
Like you and me
Loving each other through spirit
Connected we'll always be
Valentine is more than a day
More than the gifts and the words we say
You've been with me from the start
You're in my bones you're in my heart...
Teach me how to love again
Please show me the way
I've been reading all the signs you've posted
Desperately digesting what they say
I can do it baby
Just you wait and see
I can fall in love again
I can fall in love with me

💙

 

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We are Perfectly Flawed

'I myself am made entirely of flaws, stitched together with good intentions.'
- Augusten Burroughs

We are all flawed.
We are complex.
We are fragile.
We are love.
We are human, and as long as we are existing in a realm of duality, we WILL make mistakes. Judge of character is not how you react but rather in how you forgive. Forgive yourself your mistakes, your flaws, your shortcomings.
Forgive yourself the messes you've made,
when you left but should have stayed,
the drunk text you sent your ex.
Forgive yourself the misunderstandings,
when you didn't get it right,
fell out of your center and just wanted to fight.
Forgive yourself the times you've fallen down, made a fool and broke your crown.
Life rolls out fast,
no one likes goodbyes...
Eventually, you'll begin to see, seek ye shall find;
That these eyes
can realize
real lies
of the worried mind
You'll see that it's okay, not the fabricated fables constructed from fear nor doubt, the storm raging inside your head. Clear the sleeting chaos that yields no clout... Unless you let it... Which still, gives YOU the power instead.
You are the sky, everything else is just the weather ⚡️
Your intentions are who you are, the truest depth of heart, you'll regret and resent, dreaming of a restart. Think wish pray... Yet that spirit which lies within, who you truly are, could never possibly go away.
Your heart is true, so just be you.
Why worry sweet babe?
 

 Photo by Joe Ornelas - (Los Angeles, CA)

Photo by Joe Ornelas - (Los Angeles, CA)

An open letter of my heartbreak - I need to be honest with you guys... I need to be honest with myself

The first blog of what needs to be many more... What once was a tool for teaching can now be an outlet, and educate in a different emotional way... I've always said that I want to be truly open and honest, and it's always been well received. I've had strangers come up to me and ask, 'excuse me, are you Ashley? Feeling Joy?' When I reply yes, I've gotten the most beautiful responses... 'I've been following you for years, I love all of your posts...' One of them just yesterday here in Bali, incredible the connections we can make nowadays...

One girl told me my writing helped her through the death of her father. That was a big one for me. Every response like that keeps me going, truly touches my heart, keeps me inspired...

I want others to learn from my experience... The amount of feedback has always been beautiful to hear and read. I've been pretty open with my journey, and yet also admittedly closed up. Certain details I never disclosed. I didn't answer emails for months, and only just finally started posting again recently. I got lazy and uninspired, and rightfully so. 

Talk about a year of new beginnings...

When Marco died, I told myself that I would take the next year to just BE. To wander, to get lost, in order to find myself again. To do whatever it is that I wanted to do, that I had never done before.

During his illness and his passing I was super strong in my practice. Waking up at sunrise every day, I would go to 6am yoga, get a juice on the way home at my local, and make it back before he even woke up... I had been resetting every morning, filling myself up in order to give of a full self. The fact is, I needed that, it's the only thing that got me through. I was strong through it and I've finally had a chance to breathe.

However.

I AM raw. I am vulnerable. I have experienced deep pain.

The real challenge has come after the fact. The real pain has only just set in. This is when I need to be the most careful, gentle with myself. This is when my reactions have gotten crazy. I've been a mess, and I'm not proud of how I've handled myself. I've been absent-minded, indifferent, reactive.

Admitting that and truly recognising it has been one of the hardest things to do. It requires absolute detachment from ego.

Letting go of any attachment to the person I used to be is hard, but it is re-birthing in the truest sense. I'm not the person I was before I met Marco. I'm not the person I was even in caring for him, or in his passing. This person I've been living with inside of me actually scares me. 

Knowing I'm in that space, I've been forced to recognise that I haven't attracted the best situations into my reality. When you're strong and moving from centre, abundance flows, as you attract other strong centred energies. After all, like attracts like.

You don't have love for yourself? Well, how do you expect others to love you?

It's a silly thing to ask really, because logically, of course not... The real question for me now is how can I love this person I've been confronted with, this sad volatile woman inside. The one who regrets the past. The one who acts out in bursts of anger. The woman who is scared, scarred, feels unloved and alone.

Sometimes I just don't care. About anything. Sometimes I care so much that it hurts even more when that love isn't reciprocated.

What actually breaks my heart the most is that I miss that person I used to be. The happy, bright, positive being that everyone would comment on, 'wow, you have such a beautiful outlook on life, how are you so positive?'

I did have an incredible outlook on life, and I fucking miss it. I miss ME.

I've come to the conclusion that I need to be very careful with who and what I surround myself with. I will have outbursts. I will cry. I used to sing screaming in the car. I need to surround myself with absolute support right now. With softness, with forgiveness, with unconditional love. I need to be able to let it out and not be afraid of being judged.

I need to be able to cry and not care that I look weak, and that means allowing myself the space to do so. Weakness has always been a big thing to me, because I've never really been weak. Physically, emotionally... Even through all the hospitalisation, I was strong. I cried but I kept doing what needed to be done, I asked questions all the time, I recorded all of the test results, I communicated with naturopaths, holistic doctors, friends. I kept up the work. Everyone around said I was a strong warrior woman, they were in awe that I could make it through. I carried that with me like a torch and clung to it as part of my identity.

Truth of the matter is, it no longer is my identity. I am no longer the caretaker. My time was filled with pouring love into another human being so much that I have completely forgotten what it was like to love myself. Once upon a time...

What I did day in and day out no longer needs to be done. The job was finished and my time was just... open.

How do I create a new identity for myself? Wish I could build a new one from scratch sometimes. Yet, it can't be, because there is no clean slate. Life is messy, and there are constant reminders of where I've been and what I've been through. There are pieces of him in me, I see pieces of him in other people. Every man I meet will always be compared to him. After 5 years of being with someone so closely, everything has just... changed. Also yet, it hasn't. Everything is still the same, he's just not there anymore.

This year is certainly to be one of rebirth, to say the absolute least. I will come out on the other side of this, truly strong, because the work will have been done. I have so far to go still, and admitting that is one of the biggest steps I've taken thus far.

I've scattered some of his ashes in small amounts on my way... Once at burning man at the temple... The same day David Bowie's daughter brought his ashes actually... Once in Yosemite, in the river which winds gracefully through the valley, nourishing the land... The very next day there was the first rain after a 4 year drought in the area... I still have a long road ahead, I still have him engrained deeply into my heart. This year I will truly move with him working through me, to honour him still.

I honour him by letting go.

I honour him by loving myself.

I will dive into myself, into my work, into what I truly believe in. I will do it because my heart depends on it. My mission has always been to give, to love, to share... It's my instinct, embedded deep into my bones. However I will only continue breaking my own heart if I continue to deplete my being. If I don't become strong and in love with myself once again, I will be giving from an empty shell, and that's not giving much at all...

Homeless Heart

I wonder if anything will feel like home again...
The way it felt when I could smell and taste your skin.
Home was your salt in the lick of my lips, rewetting my mouth and taking you in...
The kind of home that was completely contented within each and every moment's embrace of you.
I wonder...
If anything could satiate that desire...
It isn't fire that I miss, although unmistakably ignited kisses...
You.
My rock.
The salt of the earth.
Dust you have become, slip you under my tongue
Must let you go in my heart's rebirth
And yet.
My mouth waters.

 Marco - (Uluwatu, Bali, Indonesia)

Marco - (Uluwatu, Bali, Indonesia)

Symmetrics

 

There is no real symmetry in the universe. It's perfection lies in it's unbalanced balance.

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There is duality, but how can we truly say that any which thing is the exact opposite of the other? There are two sides of every coin, three sides to every story, and you yourself have perfection in your asymmetrical balance. We must sway from side to side in order to achieve it. If we never cross the line, we will never master walking on it. By giving too much of yourself, only then can you see how to pull back that energy. The inverse is always true, by closing off and introverting, you can see how you must open and blossom. There is always vice versa.

Any two sides, any duality has this balance, but it must constantly shift and sway in order to truly walk the line...

Living Life Expansively

No matter how many times I have been wronged, or make mistakes, I know I can bounce back with grace and strength. Living life open is the only way to do it. Why do yourself such disservice by closing in?

Life just HAPPENS, and it can happen to anyone. It will catch you off guard, when everything seemed to be flowing so smoothly in one direction. Or when you thought you just couldn't possibly take anymore. It can test your limits and push you to break.

When we step back we can see the bigger picture. Step out of the story, the emotions, the thoughts, and just take a moment to remind yourself that no storm lasts forever. This too shall pass. Open your heart, so that when it does, when this time of trial passes, you can step right back into your power. Seamlessly sewn back into the fabric of your life's purpose, back into our truth.

Today, I am thankful for my strength. I am grateful that life has happened to me, and continues to do so as I grow every single day, brighter and more expansive. I am thankful for continuing to follow my truth, no matter how challenging it may seem.

Your Body is Your Vessel - Thankful Thursday

Our bodies are the only things we are given, that is truly ours during this lifetime. 

It can be easy to take it for granted, when we momentarily forget just how beautiful it is, how lucky we are to honor this temple we inhabit... Life provides us with small reminders, sometimes they are subtle and other times much more obvious.

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As I sat and watched the determination here in front of me, it reminded me not only of just how lucky I am, but the strength and resilience the human psyche is truly capable of... This is the only body we have, the only vessel in which we travel through this existence with.

Treat it with kindness, with love... Honor it in the way it deserves, for it carries you through your individual, unique, fantastic journey. Today take a moment to honor yourself. Whether it be in a quiet meditation, or during some sort of physical exercise / workout, take a moment to sit with yourself, filling your entire body with your full attention, from your toes to your fingertips, from your belly to your crown. Appreciating every single cell in your body and how they all work together to create this experience for you, and only you.

Revel in your uniqueness today, in your individual journey, in the highs and the lows. Both the incredible power we possess, and also our challenges, which provide us a perspective from which to see things more clearly, as we gain higher understanding of ourselves.