A Return From Recess

The other day I was sitting on the beach here on Koh Lanta, my home away from home again this winter, watching this serenely beautiful sunset. I was thinking about someone, a person in my life whom I have come to love beyond measure.

©HappyChanter sunset

©HappyChanter coral loveGradually, I began to notice the song that was playing from the bar nearby, a voice gently nudging its way into my conscious awareness. It was a song about love, the lyrics of which synchronise perfectly with the relationship I have with this person. So perfectly that it can only have been meant for my ears in this exact moment. I smiled to myself and listened to my life, mirrored in the melody the universe chose to reflect upon me. Then I looked down and my eyes were drawn to one last little kiss from God, resting in the sand. A love heart, a wink and a friendly nudge, a gentle reminder that everything in our lives is perfectly aligned and that when you beam out the light of love, it is returned right back to you.

That’s where I’m at right now, just to kick off this “where I’ve been and where we’re going” re-acquaintance. I know you haven’t heard from me in a while, so I wanted to start with the assurance that I am happy and healthy, and still, as always, basking in the bliss and comfort of connection with All-That-Is ♥

As for where I’ve been since my last post, well, it has been a hectic year full of self-discovery, infinite insights, new ventures and excitement. To try to summarise the story, on the surface at least: first of all, it took me a while to adjust to my new reality after the death of my lovely Dad last year. The flame of grief never really flickers out; I still have days and moments when the ache of loss devastates my body and soul all over again, manifesting in tears of mourning. But that fire does subside in time, leaving smouldering embers to replace the blaze. These days I am at peace with his passing, and smile more often than cry when I think of him. And even more so when I think about just what his loss ended up leading to…

©HappyChanter dbhEvery cloud really does have a silver lining, even in the most bittersweet way. After Dad died, I found myself living in the holiday home that he had built together with my Mum, a true oasis in the Irish countryside, infused with his essence between the design and decor, the airy mezzanine, and the earthy aroma of the pine ceilings. “Big and bold”, just like him. Being there, surrounded by nature and acres of peace and quiet, I was able to rest, recover, and nourish my spirit. Right from the first day, I could hear the whisper of intuitive guidance, that voice within all of us that leads the way if we can only manage to quiet our own inner babble and listen. In this case, it came as a strong sense of warm encouragement to open this space up, to redecorate the original cottage on site, and to invite others to enjoy the tranquillity it offers, as I have. This past summer I finally took the time and action to make it happen. And so Dún Beag Haven was born! A summertime sanctuary that I’m proud to say has already welcomed several contented customers seeking an escape from the everyday grind.

In other “work” news, I was also honoured to have been involved in the editing of an exciting new book by the lovely Suzanne the Oceanpreneur. Ocean Nomad is a comprehensive guide to help you find a boat to hop onto to sail across the Atlantic as crew, and also contains countless words of wisdom and actionable advice to conserve and protect the true lungs of the earth: the ocean. If the sound of that sparks your spirit in any way, do check it out!

Diving under the surface now, beyond the jobs I’ve had and work I’ve done, I have allowed myself to relax along the road to rediscovery. Shutting down the critic within, that voice that berates when we’re not “producing” what it somehow thinks we should, I simply accepted that I wasn’t able to bestow any half-hearted words of wisdom on these pages before I had life’s latest lessons figured out. Not that there’s any limit to learning; it permeates, and even daily developments in my now experience are melting and modifying my mind and soul, inviting insights and setting the stage for future dreams to evolve into existence. Whenever friends and family have asked when I’m getting back to the blog or the long-heralded book, I would reply, with a wink, that I’m busy “gathering material”. The answer is delivered in jest but also in Truth. Because for every step I’ve taken – including whatever down time I allowed myself – in indulging in social shenanigans, inspiring interactions, and rest and relaxation – in living – I have re-found mySelf, my purpose, my voice. My creative juices have started flowing in alignment with the energy of All-That-Is, and I have even found myself spreading into different forms of expression, which never would have happened without sitting back and allowing myself to “waste” time in the indulgence of inertia. Writing, art, music, you name it, I’m probably holed up in my room doing it, allowing my Soul to speak to and through me.

So that’s where I’ve been. And this was how it needed to go. I had other tasks to focus on, yes, but I also needed to step back for a while and consciously allow myself to drift along the current of Life, quiet the brain-chatter, and go with the flow of gentle guidance from deep within.

As for where we’re going, what lies ahead on the path of possibility – well, there are exciting plans in the pipeline! My notebooks are full of scribbles and scrawls, loaded with lessons and insights to impart, right here on this blog. I’m finally getting down to writing that book. I’m still exploring those other creative outlets and you might even see some of those endeavours brought public in some form, someday. But at the top of the list is a step-by-step guide that I’m working on for YOU, a workbook to help you build up your own daily wellness practice, to cultivate that connection with All-That-Is and converse with your own inner Self, to enhance your life and achieve your dreams.

I hope you’ll all stick around for the ride. After such a long hiatus, I’ve already been so surprised and humbled to see that even in my absence, my reveries have resonated, with so many of you still seeking and finding this site and reaching out to say hello through comments or direct messages. From the bottom of my heart, thank you ALL. I am so grateful for your ongoing support, honoured to have you as part of the Happy Chanter community, and I am so excited to start sharing again.

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