Who am I…

A lot of people ask me why I eat a plant based diet. Do I feel healthier? Have you lost weight? What do you eat? It started as a self serving mission to be healthier and live longer by possibly avoiding diseases that plague my family. Then another layer came to mind. The environment. Based on statistics and research I’ve come across it appears to be better for the earth to eat a plant based diet. Then I really started to think about why I put so much effort into a plant based lifestyle. I’ve always been an animal lover. But actually stoping to think about and watch what happens to these animals changed me. In stores nothing has a face, eyes or really resembles an animal. These items are simply thought of as fuel for survival and a means for culinary pleasure. I’m a believer in energy and karma. I believe when a terrified animal whether abused or treated ethically(if that exists) is about to be killed hormones and toxins release into their bodies. It’s like how stress and anxiety can cause disease or health issues in humans. Whether it’s spiritual or scientific, people are consuming these animals and their toxins or karma. I believe what you put into your body not only affects your health but also our minds and our soul. If you had to kill and butcher everything you ate would you still eat animals? Whether your answer is yes or no, I invite you to look at that. I personally thought I needed so much protein and meat to survive. I’m a 200 pound active male who is mentally and physically able to do just about anything. I thought I would possibly get sick or become weak. Here I am over a year later eating only plant based feeling mentally clear and maintaining a weight with out yo yo-ing constantly. It’s a lifestyle not a diet. It’s about your health, the earths health and compassion. Everything on this earth human or animal just wants to be loved, safe, recreate and thrive. Who am I to take that from them? Animals have souls and are very aware of what’s happening. There is no difference between your pet dog, cat, rabbit, cow, pig or chicken. Just someone decided hey we can eat these guys but these other animals are pets. We live in a society of made up rules and ideology. That’s doesn’t mean we act out and disobey them. That means we challenge them. We question them. We always pursue and strive to be better. We evolve and adapt using the information we have today not blindly following the beliefs of the few from years ago. In today’s world I believe anything is possible. That statement is proven true daily. I invite you to find out what’s possible for yourself by considering what rules and ideology you follow or believe to be true. Then challenge and question them. Anything that is true to you does not need justification or defending, just being. If you find yourself being defensive or angry that’s something you should explore.

Peace, Love and Cacti,

Jeffrey

What makes it beautiful

What are we doing as people? Are we really listening to those around us? Do we even truly see someone who is right in front of us? Are things really what they seem? Work, social media, possessions and looking good among other things have consumed many of our lives. Maybe not 24/7 for some but I have felt, lived and observed our lives consumed by so many things portrayed/perceived as so important. In my perfect world there would be nothing more important than the person or people around you. And I’m not just talking about family. I’m talking about your neighbor. The person in line in front of you. Anyone who crosses your path. But again that’s my perfect world which I don’t always live in personally. I’ve caught myself rushing to work and seeing someone on the side of the road obviously needing help. But I don’t stop. I continue on with my day as if my being on time for work or whatever I’m doing is more important than simply taking the time to help or maybe just check on another human being. This used to make me angry. Now I just feel sad. In some aspects the disconnect grows and grows. Other times I’m truly amazed by the consecutiveness surrounding me. It’s not my place to judge or dictate how ones life is lived. But I do feel it is all of our duties as human beings to question ourselves as well as others. To really take stock of what’s going on within and around us. A sense of awareness coupled with connection. Life is a beautiful thing and we all get to choose what makes it beautiful. I invite us all to choose willingly, considerately and knowingly.

Charlotte

Below is something I wrote to my daughter before she was born. It felt strange writing it at first, but looking back I’m glad I did it. Even years ago while exploring my spiritual side I would talk to her and dream of her. It’s like she was waiting for her turn in life and had already chosen us as parents. We just needed to choose each other. The more I dive into my spirituality and honestly just life as I feel being here is a spiritual experience. The more I embrace the unknown. To me spirituality requires a lot of trust and letting go in the face of the unknown. Believing in something bigger and more powerful than ourselves. For me the word I use is Universe. I believe everything and everyone is connected creating a universal power within us all and everything around us.

Charlotte,

Where do I begin…

I’ve always dreamt of having a little girl.

I feel like I have been waiting for you my whole life.

I knew the moment your mother and I connected she was something special.

Little did I know she would be the one to make all my dreams come true.

From the moment we started dating it felt like I had known her forever.

Even when times were tough,

something inside me knew she was the one I would love forever.

The best choice I have ever made will always be loving your mother.

I know in my heart that you will love her as much as I do. Maybe more.

If there is one thing you should know,

It is that as my heart continues to grow there is enough love for both of you.

I am excited to meet you and I will always be there whenever you both need me.

I have always wondered what my life’s purpose was. Now I know it is enjoying every moment I have with you and your mom.

The two of you make me a better human.

I love you.

– Dada

The one to look up to

I always dreamt of having a little girl. Holding her, loving her and raising her. What I did not expect was the profound love I would receive in return. This girl is a lover of all things. Whether you are a person , animal or tree. She gently touches and smells the flowers as she walks by. She gently pets our dog Ziggy and says good boy. She says hello and lovingly touches the trees she encounters. She wraps her arms around your neck squeezing tight and says I love you. She is so deeply and thoughtfully connected with her surroundings. Sometimes I feel as if I’m the one being raised and she is the one to look up to. Her kindness and genuine love constantly remind me of what is true and what is valuable in life. That is just one of the many things my daughter taught me.

Something Beautiful

It’s interesting to me how we grow to love people but with our children it’s instant. There isn’t a honeymoon phase or first impression. Just pure and utter love. There is something beautiful about it. It makes me think about love in my life. Whether it’s giving or receiving. I’ve always had a hard time telling people I loved them. It did not mean I did not, it was just uncomfortable for me to get the words out. But like anything the more you do it the easier it gets. Now I make sure to tell people I love them. I feel this unconditional instant love I felt for Charlotte has unlocked something inside me that was always there. It allowed me to be clear on what love is to me and where love is in my life. Which brings me back to… there is something beautiful about it.

Husband

0003_Couples

Getting married is a huge life event and big commitment. Not only is it a big commitment, it is a choice. No matter what denomination you believe in you make a commitment and a choice during the ceremony. Here is a bit of a different outlook. Here we are newly married. We are now legally bound together. We are now committed to each other. I personally looked at marriage as nothing more than a contract signing followed by a party. Everyone is just there for the free drinks and food, right? I thought it was nothing more than another step in my life. It took me some time but I realized it was more than just a commitment or a step forward in life. It was a choice. We chose to marry each other and we choose to stay married every day. We did sign some documents and have a big party afterwards. But it was different and so much more than just a life event. We were surrounded by our closest friends and family who had been there through the ups and downs of our relationship to this point. It was really a special day. A day that changed the way I saw things forever. Although I am very committed to my marriage and love my wife deeply. Commitment always and still sounds like a choice mixed with an obligation to me. I choose my wife. By choosing her as my life partner I feel it takes us deeper than commitment. Deeper than legal documents. Deeper then love. I believe a marriage as well as all relationships are like a recipe. It takes a lot of little things added up to make a beautiful dish. The same is true for relationships. Although every recipe isn’t the same for everyone, I do believe it takes more than love and commitment to make a relationship last and thrive. Some days may be easier to make that choice than others. For me, even when times get tough I remember we are only human and that I am responsible for my own happiness. Probably most of my own sadness as well. If I can offer any advice, it is when times get tough just think back to why you chose and continue to choose this person.  Also take responsibility for your own feelings. Only you have the power to make yourself feel sadness or happiness. Do not blame each other, work together because you are a team with a common goal. What is that goal for you?

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Back to Basics…Back to Life

imageIt has been about 3 years since my last post. Over the last 3 years I have accomplished a lot. I am set to be married to my fiancé of 6 years in about 26 days. I have grown a successful company after many years of struggle. With the help of my fiancé we purchased our first home which we fall in love with over and over every single day. We have traveled to many beautiful places and spent a lot of time with our loved ones.

After reading my above paragraph I look back and remember so many wonderful memories. Yet I still can’t help but feel stuck and in a way unfulfilled. It is like my spirit has been yurning for more or something different. Don’t get me wrong I am very happy with my current life, home and beautiful fiancé. The only way I can explain it is the feeling of something is missing. I find myself constantly saying”there has to be something more to this life”.

The last 3 years I believed I was taking time for myself and building a lasting legacy. When in reality I was stuffing my feelings deep down and doing whatever it took to succeed at the expense of everyone else around me. I have always been kind hearted and generous. Over the last few years I started to feel disconnected and alone. I had literally suppressed every emotion I had felt.Which led to issues in my personal life and business life.

About a month ago I was about to liquidate my company, sell all my possessions and disappear away from everyone I ever knew. The pressure of life and the pressure I put on myself had finally reached a breaking point. I found myself rude to people I cared about and I ran my company only in my best interest with out regard for others at times. Luckily I finally started listening and feeling some of my emotions. I had hidden my passion for spirituality and nature for fear of being different or unliked. Which in some cases only made me more unliked. I feel as human beings we have this urging connection with each other. As much as we try to fight it or be different from the rest, there is always a feeling deep down of unity and compassion.

I meet a lot of people daily who appear to have life all figured out and that are fearless. Once I actually connected and listened to people I started to realize the majority of us have the same concerns and fears. Whether you are a homeless person on the street or a multi millionaire with everything you could ever want. It becomes very apparent that we are all searching for something more.

I still have a long journey ahead of me and I will do my best to continue posting on this blog. Being open, vulnerable and acknowledging my emotions is not really my cup of tea. A few wise people have told me that sitting in that “uncomfortableness” not only helps you grow as a person, it also can lead to ideas and things you least expect.

Life is simple, when we get back to basics… We get back to life.

-Jeff