Tag Archives: gratitude

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Time

Author Talk: Leanda Michelle

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My first author talk in Australia was a heartwarming and memorable experience, thanks to staff at the Mornington Library and the audience. Prior to this I’d been fortunate to do a shorter talk at a metaphysical bookstore in Elmvale, Canada in September 2016. Strangely, it seemed easier to talk to strangers in a foreign land than people on home soil.

My talk was about the themes of my latest book In Light of the Truth: belonging and love, as well as the therapeutic aspect of writing and what I’d learned.

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Q & A time was engaging and a tad easier than trying to remember the important aspects of my 49 years life experiences, and in sequential flow!

Here’s a couple…

I’d mentioned the importance of having a spiritual connection, and that my journey had ebbed and flowed from healing to writing, and on repeat, until I’d blended them together… so, did I have a daily routine that assisted me with that, like some other authors do?

‘Yes. My morning alignment—toning, and exercise regime that includes a smorgasbord of yoga, pilates, qi gong,  the Tibetan Five Rites and walking in nature.’

‘Were you ever concerned about your story hurting anyone you’ve written about?’

Another good question.

‘Yes. In part this is why it took me fourteen years to publish my first book. It is why the first memoir is still an eBook and not in print, but also because I didn’t know how to put it into print at that time. Now that I’ve completed my “trilogy of memoirs”… if there is such a thing… my quest is complete, and I’m ready to share my story about love and belonging. As for hurting a anyone, no, because my words are not intended to do so… and if a person is offended it will be their learning.’

My youngest son, Thomas, was in the audience. He had the day off work so he’d decided to attend, and offer his support. He knows my story, and that our life events are written solely from my perspective. So, when he put his hand up to ask a question, I found it deeply thought-provoking.

‘Do you ever feel discouraged, and if so how and why do you keep doing what you do?’

He and his brothers know more than anyone what I have sacrificed in order to continue with this writing journey, so my answer was of utmost importance, if only to him. I took a breath to centre myself, trying not to think about the utter meltdown he’d witnessed me have two days prior, and admitted to him and the audience that it hadn’t been an easy road.

‘Yes, I’ve faced discouragement on numerous occasions. Yet it’s my love for writing… how I feel when answers to my questions are revealed through my words… it’s how I make sense of my world. And as to what keeps me going? I can’t pinpoint exactly what it is,’ I said taking a moment to consider the question more deeply. ‘It feels like a deep inner knowing, that I have committed to this path. I know I’m being looked after.’

It felt strange saying those words aloud, as if I needed to pay more attention to them. Realising I have this strong belief of conviction, made me wonder why at times I had forgotten.

Another hand went up.

‘You talked about Sound Reiki, can you give us a sample?’

Thomas has heard my toning voice many times, yet I could see the woman’s request for a sample came as a shock to him, almost as it had to me. As if he were embarrassed on my behalf, he moved from standing at the back of the room and took a seat.

I silently set an intent and shared what came through as heart-centred tones. A couple of people who weren’t shocked by the experience shared their feedback, before the questions continued.

What’s Next?’ asked a friend in the front row.

‘Thank you for asking,’ I said smiling, feeling grateful to move on. ‘Now that my third memoir is complete I have decided I want to collaborate with a traditional publisher, and have sent it to a publishing house. In the interim I’ve returned to writing my fantasy novel, as I’ve realised from my Write to Know Self gatherings that as a child my favourite thing to do was be immersed in my imagination.’

‘And what’s your greatest wish?’

‘To see my fantasy novel made into a movie,’ I said. Gosh! I’d just said that aloud.

More than an hour had skipped by quick. The audience had been very gracious, and I’d learned a lot from the event. Above all, I felt grateful for the practice and experience in public speaking. Now, to trust in the magic of new beginnings. If you don’t hear from me for a while you’ll know where I am… immersed in my imaginary world of adventure. Oh, and we haven’t yet secured a new rental spot… that’s another story.

Thank you for reading and sharing in this wondrous journey, called life. What question might you have asked me? Have you attended an author talk before? What did you learn?

Write to Heal and make your mark!

Blessings,

Leanda Michelle ♥


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Moving On...

Moving On

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We’re moving on. I sit at the dining table next to a large window and feel into the space, the house and land, with gratitude. Outside is a square patch of colourful gazanias, their petals partially closed to protect them from the rain. Two large pine trees in the front yard provide shelter for the possums. And along the driveway is a hedge of conifers.

Once again, we’re counting down the weeks and days before we relocate. It was always going to be a temporary situation, though, we weren’t aware of the owner’s plans until a few days after we’d signed the lease.

It’s an old community. Daily happenings have become predictable. Monday nights, a choir gathers next door. Many a senior walks by regularly to buy the daily newspaper from the corner store at the end of the street. Young mum’s push strollers, and people walk their dogs. In the summer months Friday night appears to be fish ‘n’ chips or pizza night, as families walk to collect their order.

At the front of the property are two wooden beams that make a fence. A row of red geraniums poke their flower heads through the slats, inviting little tackers to stop and pick one or two.

Today the wind blows, leaves quiver, and I feel grateful to be indoors. The house is old, though it’s been a safe haven for my sons, and me since my return from Canada. Although cold air seeps in around the door and window seals, and the plumbing shudders and shakes, it’s sturdy and well-built and has served us well.

The backyard is a vista of green, lush grass, patches of weeds, dotted with dandelions. An old Hills hoist sits in the middle of the yard and reminds me of my childhood, when I’d swing like a monkey from its steel frame. In Australian suburban tradition the backyard wouldn’t be complete without a lemon tree. Its ancient roots protrude above the earth, and its fruit is prolific with green and ripe lemons, unsure of what season we’re in.

Neighbours tell me there was once a magnificent vegetable garden that adorned the backyard too. The elderly owner was a man well-known for sharing his produce with all the neighbours. In the harvest month, we were fortunate to pick a solitary zucchini from a self-sown plant.

It’s a big block of land, and like a precious jewel, they’re becoming rare. Soon, the house and trees will be demolished as developers move in and replace the old with the new.

Maybe I’m being too sentimental and sensitive to my surrounds. Though, energy is present wherever we are and it feels good to sit in the gratitude. I say a silent prayer of thanks for the shade and fruit the trees provided, and for the roof over our heads. And as the gentrification process takes over, I send my blessings to the elderly folk in the neighborhood. Like us, they too will eventually move on.

Have you ever lived in a house that was earmarked for demolition? How did you feel about it? Do you live in an older community?

Write to Heal and make your mark!

Blessings,

Leanda Michelle ♥


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easter

Easter Reflections

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This message, Easter Reflections comes from writer and artist, Renata, who I met in Canada last year. The background art that the words have been printed on is also by Renata, and represents the Divine Mercy—blood and water, love and forgiveness, flowing from Christ’s heart.

As Easter rolls around for another year, may we pause to reflect on what this means to us. If you asked me to reflect on Easter, I might have shared fond childhood memories spent with my cousins on a farm in the Riverland. Or recounted a happy occasion inland from Karratha, where our three young sons, hubby and I shared a picnic alongside a riverbed. Floating Easter eggs downstream, the boys would wait at the bottom of a short waterfall and catch them.

While many may go camping, devour a chocolate egg or two, and feast on a few hot cross buns with the view to celebrate and enjoy some time away from their busy life schedules, there is a deeper introspection that we may like to ponder.

It is said Easter is the most important and oldest festival of the Christian Church, celebrating the resurrection of Christ. Some have even renamed Easter as Resurrection Day. What’s interesting to me, is scripture says Jesus died on the cross and came back to life. Don’t we see the same cycles in nature, with birth, death and rebirth throughout the seasons? I see our human life as the same, we learn and grow through cycles—for example: birthing new projects, seeing them to completion, before beginning anew.

I feel it is humbling to remain open to various viewpoints and listen beyond judgment. May you enjoy the read, and share your thoughts with Renata in the comments section below. What does Easter mean to you?

Write to Heal and make your mark!

Blessings,

Leanda Michelle♥

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Turning Point

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When I returned from Canada, foremost on my mind was my living arrangements. Most of my belongings were in storage, and the rest were being utilised by my sons. Wanting to complete writing my next novel, and knowing it would be a hard ask to write and work full-time to pay the rent, I decided I would give house-sitting a go.

Little did I know what gifts this activity would deliver.

Predominantly, house-sits involve caring for pets. Remembering what had happened with Archie was enough to make me feel a little apprehensive. But, the turning point arrived when I saw that I could give something back; to my friends, to strangers, to humanity in snapshots of time and place. I saw the upside of alleviating one or more pets from having to live away from the comfort of their own home, while their owners took a leave of absence.

Each house-sit presents another pet with their own personality. There are licks on the face upon waking. The tilt of a dogs head to show they are listening. I get to observe their innocence and play, as a leaf blows by in the wind. Then there is the frivolity of a game which adds laughter to my day. Their company is indeed a gift.

Yet there is more:

Part of their care includes daily walks, a minimum of one per day. Getting outdoors in the rain or sunshine, cold or heat, has resulted in a clear head which assists my writing ten-fold.

Here’s a snapshot of today’s adventures, in the Gippsland country town of Korumburra. The pooch and I embraced the wind, rain, cloudy skies and moments of sunshine, amongst nature’s treasure troves.

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One of many majestic trees

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A makeshift bridge over Olsen’s Trail

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Lured to the sound of running water

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A limb in the process of regeneration

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Flowing with the valley

Whether you’re a writer or not, do you enjoy walks in nature? And do you find it clears your head too? Thanks for reading. May you enjoy your next wondrous adventure outdoors.

Write to Heal and make your mark!

Blessings,

Leanda Michelle ♥


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Vlogging

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What is Vlogging?

It’s a blog, however the majority of the message is done via video.

Why Vlog?

  • You get to see the person behind the words. What I say (words) + my tone of voice + body language… you get all of me communicating with you instead of my words only… even if it is one-sided to begin with… I invite you to respond in the comments below.
  • Helps me to practise public speaking, and feel more comfortable in front of a camera… this is something I’d struggled with for many years.
  • To inspire others to share their voice.

Will this replace my writing?

No. I feel far more comfortable writing than I do public speaking. However, this is another aspect of shedding layers of the proverbial onion… taking self out of my comfort zone. It’s also in alignment with my latest book where I wrote about being seen, heard, felt and known. As an author, it’s easier to sit behind the cover of a book than it is to sit in front of the camera and talk. Though, to be honest, I feel vulnerable in both.

What’s my first Vlog about?

It’s about connecting with you… my readers, clients, friends and family. In part, it is a celebration of so many wonderful experiences I shared with geniune heart-centred people in Canada. While another aspect of it was to create a keepsake of the memories, of the magical moments and landscapes I captured on my iPhone… each has assisted me to grow and expand, and are friendly reminders to keep showing up.

Have you created a vlog before? If so, how did it go? What did you learn from the experience? Or have you wanted to create a vlog? If so, what subject would you like to talk about?

Please grab a favourite beverage of your choice and enjoy watching Leanda’s Canadian Adventure.

Nourish Your Spirit!

Leanda Michelle ♥