For my birthday, please consider donating to love

May, 2012.  A circle of birch bark along the shores of Lake Superior.

Yesterday was my birthday.  Wow, 62!  Who knew this age would ever arrive on the doorstep, bringing with it this very flavor of aches and pains, joys and laughter?  Who knew?

At age 11 or 35 or 54 we can perhaps imagine what it’s like to be eligible for social security.  But we really can never know a new age until we blow out the birthday cake candles.  Another candle for another year lived!  We are still alive, dear people, alive and kicking, alive and breathing, alive and sharing love with one another.

All day yesterday–amid the emails, messages, Facebook birthday wishes, phone calls and personal interaction hugs and exchanges–I felt the good fortune of the past year blooming into a brand new birth year.  So much learned in a single year!  So many gifts of hummingbirds at the feeder, partridge by the mailbox–although I am no longer speaking to the wild beastie since he/she tried to attack me last week, a daughter’s colorful wedding along the Amalfi Coast (no official photographs yet), an impromptu visit downstate to visit my mom, oh so many shining pieces of this mosaic of life.



And yet–I like to paint shining pictures of the joy of life because that what seems to be remembered–and yet–one of the greatest gifts of this year has been a spiritual teacher who teaches how to stay present to our bodies, our humanity, the slices of pain in our hearts brought by 11, 35, 54 or 62 years of living.  How to truly feel and digest the pain and sorrow and anger and confusion of living on this blue and green spinning planet where wars and unkindness and death dares to roam.

When I meet you, and you, and you, and you…we are all telling stories of the places where we haven’t yet learned to love, to surrender to something beyond the mind’s dramas, to feel the peace and causeless joy that runs like a clear mountain spring behind the difficult thoughts and emotions hurtling havoc through our nervous systems.

Some spiritual teachers point to re-framing our thoughts into positive messages and yes, that can work.  But for me that was always a temporary fix.  My journey has been through darkness and pain, like a miner in an underground cave, a light strapped on the forehead, moving through and through and through.

Candle for the world

Single light

Learning how to move beyond the stories of our human drama into the actual undigested emotions that fester in our nervous system.  Learning to bring a transcendent spirituality into the bones, and blood, and cells, and atoms.

Learning, learning, learning.  That’s what we do for 11, 35, 54 or 62 years.  Sometimes kicking and screaming.  Often resisting in our efforts to create something other than the present moment.  Going up the roller coaster, and down the roller coaster, and sometimes screaming in fear that you’re gonna crash, you’re gonna die, you can’t figure out this game called Life.

From a previous biting fly episode in 2010


Facebook suggests we can donate to important causes.  Help the immigrants.  Save the oceans.  Donate for  the elephants.  Choose your favorite charity.

All those can be helpful, and our deepest self might point our pocketbooks towards giving.  But I have a different suggestion.  If any of you would like to donate for my birthday, would you please consider the gift of love?

Peer down, down, down into your own big and beautiful self throughout the day and notice any places which feel tight and sorrowful.  The places where tears want to arise like waterfalls.  Aches in the shoulder, perhaps.  Twist in the belly.  A depression, a meanness, a judging thought.

Now embrace it, throw your imaginary arms around it, allow it.  Whisper to yourself:  mercy, mercy, mercy to us humans.  Breathe into the achy spots, feel the ground beneath your toes, your sturdy feet.  Donate to loving yourself, dear human, donate to loving yourself.

Christmas cactus

And if perchance another hurting human being passes your path today, make space for their sorrow as well.  So often we simply can’t, simply can’t make space for another human without trying to fix, correct, help, heal.  In this donation to love you might want to consider just holding space for that precious hurting being.  Feel whatever love you can muster in your heart of hearts, and breathe, and allow any hurting simply to arise.

Thank you for considering my birthday request to donate to love.

Catching blessings in the spiderweb of life

Catching blessings in the spiderweb of life

Perhaps someday the world will shine rich with love, but that’s someday.  Right now I am feeling stars in my chest and an ache in the belly and a joy that arises at the opportunity for another day, another week, perhaps even another year of feeling the totality of hummingbirds, partridges, travel, writing, weeding–and you.

About Kathy

I live in the middle of the woods in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Next to Lake Superior's cold shores. I love to blog.
This entry was posted in July 2019 and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

44 Responses to For my birthday, please consider donating to love

  1. debyemm says:

    I came upon this after just doing much of what you suggest with an contentious person who thinks I want to change them. I would never want to do such a thing. I know they are a hurting kind of person and I didn’t sugar coat my love but simply acknowledged the truth of where that person and my own self are actually the same and then wished them happiness and satisfaction in closing.

    I have donated to those Facebook things in the past but they have mushroomed and I no longer do it. I am suspicious and cynical about Facebook’s business end of such transactions. I like your chosen charity so much more.

    And yikes – those flies !!!

    • Kathy says:

      Deb, that is a beautiful way you responded to the person who was contentious and misinterpreted your intent. Acknowledging the sameness of our inner beings can be such a gift.

      I really haven’t thought a lot about Facebook’s business end of such dealings before. Usually I just donate when the heart surges forward in love saying Yes. Am glad you like the idea of donating to Love! (Which, in some instances, means translating into cash, or wherever else Love wants to flow.)

      The picture of the flies was an old photo, but was looking for something to illustrate the challenged part of life–and that seemed apropos. Thanks for commenting.

  2. Outosego says:

    Happy birthday, dear.

  3. Susan D. Durham says:

    How beautiful is this? And powerful. Donating to Love. Amazing. Thank you for the gifts you give, 365 days a year, dear one feeling stars in her chest (God, I love that).

    • Kathy says:

      My dear friend, I could wax poetic about you and the gifts you give (so many personally to me) but we’ve been such a mutual admiration society the past few days that I will just say this: xoxoxoxo

  4. sonalikande says:

    Oh how beautifully written! Donate to loving yourself, I really wish I could do that everyday.
    Once again, best wishes to you dear Kathy, as you celebrate your 62nd. How time flies….

    • Kathy says:

      Yes, Sonali, we must do this daily! And add so much mercy toward ourselves, tons of mercy, eons of mercy, universes of mercy. We’re just humans with all sorts of quirks and flaws attempting to live our heart’s desires and not knowing how so often…. ❤

  5. Happy Birthday my dear Goddess Friend. I wish you joy that bursts likes fireworks within and without. I know you’re experienced that joy intermixed with the pain, and I suppose that’s why you’re able to write this brilliant (as in BRIGHT LIGHT) post filled with so much love I believe it bursts within each of your readers. To celebrating your birth on the day 62 years ago, but also to each birth you’ve experienced of enlightenment. Because we all grow in your shared Light. ❤

    • Kathy says:

      Oh who knew that brilliant means BRIGHT LIGHT? I love that! Was feeling that so much yesterday morning and this blog did just burst forward without a lot of thought. The Light each of us shine on the planet is so precious. And sometimes we–or at least I–need to percolate that light into the darkness or sadness or confusion that arises. All part of the whole of the mosaic. Thank you, my dear, for your–well, everything, really. Much love…

  6. Carol says:

    This morning seems to be a time in which I am attempting to identify, to define this sense of discontent that is rumbling around in my brain. This might be a moment, the moment, your words are most needed – to gift myself, in honor of your birthday, enough love to accept the discontent and ride its wave as it heads to the shoreline. Thank you.

    • Kathy says:

      Yes, Carol, yes, that discontent. When it rumbles it can get so loud that it seems to completely obliterate our larger connection to the divine, or whatever word describes what exists beyond the little self. I was experiencing such joy yesterday morning (while and after writing this) but during the afternoon a great sadness and sense of confusion arose and so I had to follow the advice of this blog and “donate to love”. Sat with the feelings for hours feeling and digesting them. This morning the inner sky is clear and cloudless. For now. I hope you were able to embrace the feelings that arose in you yesterday and that you’ve returned to the sandy shoreline and the sea is calm.

  7. Barb says:

    The push and pull of life – I’ve been thinking about that lately. I can remember 62 (vaguely since it was so long ago). I hope you can feel my love coming to you from a quiet woods in Colorado. Be well Kathy. Hugs.

    • Kathy says:

      Barb, your blog spoke eloquently of that push and pull of life. The ups and downs, the forwards and backwards, the yes and no. To live with all of them in an integral way: that is what I think our planet is crying for. To hold space for everything in love, and to move to action informed by that love. I can feel you, my friend! From another quiet woods in Michigan…hugs back.

  8. Beautiful post, Kathy. We certainly do find our own joy in life and living. Really, no one can give that to us and no one can take it away. Hope your 62nd year is spectacular and leads you along an adventurous road through many more birthdays.

    • Kathy says:

      Patty, it’s always lovely to see you here and elsewhere. I like what you say “no one can give that to us and no one can take it away”. Thanks for the birthday wishes!

  9. Shirley Khodja says:

    Very inspirational, Kathy. I followed your advice today and I’ll follow it tomorrow and every day thereafter. Thank you for your gift, and Happy Birthday to you!

  10. Melinda says:

    I am donating my love to the flies.

    • Kathy says:

      Melinda, what a worthy donation of your love! You know, from experience, how hard it can be to find love for those buggers when they’re biting you to pieces!

  11. Ah, this is lovely…and a wonderful idea, too! I hope your birthday was just as magically special as you are, and that the year ahead continues to hold wonders for you!

    • Kathy says:

      I am glad you like the idea, Cindy. The birthday was lovely, it’s always the best time of year in mid to late July, perhaps. Strawberries and garden onions and livin’ can be easier than our gray winter days. Wonders to you as well!

  12. Beautiful! Happy Birthday! I wish you continued happiness and love. I thank you for your gift of words that touch us. Life is full of lessons and learning. Your words make that easier.

    • Kathy says:

      That is really a kind thing to say, Sherrie. The words just poured out yesterday morning, like quicksilver. Quite often all these words prove to be big time reminders for me. It’s like Spirit is downloading to me, but I share the words in case they speak to someone else, too. Thank you!

  13. Laura Bennet says:

    Happy Birthday! Great post. 😁

  14. Tilly travel says:

    Beautiful post, happy birthday

  15. aburaayyan says:

    I just found you and l feel the love already. That such love is freely given, makes my entire being feel contented. How refreshing life can be, thank you all for allowing me too read of so much love.

    • Kathy says:

      Aburaayyan, you sound like you are someone who “donates to love” already. Maybe our world would be more contented if more people felt the way you do.

  16. Ally Bean says:

    Happy Birthday! I like your idea to share the love. I attempt to do it every day [often via blog comments as a matter of fact]. I agree that once you look deep within yourself and process your pains + joys, sharing more love comes naturally. Would that more people could be brave enough to do so.

    • Kathy says:

      You are right, Ally Bean. It takes a form of bravery to be open and vulnerable and loving. So early in life we often start protecting our precious hearts from hurt and rejection. Blessings to you and the way you “share the love”!!

  17. Elisa says:

    Happy birthday!

  18. Karen says:

    I hope the power of love filled you with happiness on your birthday. May you have many more healthy and happy one.

  19. Val says:

    A very, very belated happy birthday, Kathy. Many hugs, dear. xx

  20. timalanmi says:

    Miss Kathys posts here and her blog .. anyone know why she is no longer posting anything ?? Thanks

    • Kathy says:

      Hi Tinalanmi, I am just not called to blog these days here at WordPress. But thanks for asking and missing me. Blessings to you and your family.

Thank you for reading. May you be blessed in your life...may you find joy in the simple things...

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