Everything. Absolutely everything is included. The stuff we want. The stuff we don’t want. What’s easy. What’s difficult. What’s known. What’s unknown. All of it.

Can you imagine it? Can you imagine claiming all of it? Giving space and recognition, voice and comfort to it all. That “All” being, everything that you experience in Life. Nothing omitted. Nothing to get past. Instead, a big, wild, effervescent, sometimes stinky, tapestry that you can call your own. Every single moment of every single day. All of what it is that makes up your Life.

Right from this moment on, right down to, and including, the last moment.

What if that actually was the choice (by the way, it is) that was before us at any given moment? The knowing that, as Tara Brach would say, “This too belongs.” This too belongs. As in, it all belongs. All of it. Every single bit of it. Nothing too ugly, shameful, painful, unwanted, difficult or disgusting to be here. And nothing too outrageous, wild, unkempt, fanciful or impossibly brilliant to be here.

But of course, this would take a commitment, and a kind of determination to no longer play the victim to your Life circumstances. To no longer believe and act as if you have no choice. To no longer leave your Life in the hands of something or someone else. To no longer abandon yourself because you do not like how you are feeling. Or what it is that is showing up.

Can you do it? Of course you can. Interestingly enough though, that is not the question. The question is, will you do it? Will you claim the totality of your Life? Beginning with, will you take ownership of, and responsibility for, what you are experiencing?

This is a tall order. This is something most of us have not been schooled in. Something most of us have not been given the skills to be with. Therefore, where to begin?

Begin at the beginning. Begin with one simple statement: “I commit to seeing everything I experience today as a necessary, loving and legitimate part of my life.” Knowing this then, the only sane response is to say “Yes” to what is here. Not to say I like it or want it, but instead to say out loud that I recognize this is, in fact, here. It is to say there must be a reason for whatever is here to be here, and I am open to knowing that reason.

Getting even more up close and personal: Instead of pushing you away, I am open to knowing why you are here for me. And I am committed to not succumbing to the belief that Life is against me, and you are opposed to me. That I am open to discovering what gifts you bring for my Life that I might not recognize as such unless I am willing to look differently. Gifts that I will never recognize when I am committed to being victimized by you. Gifts that I open to because that is what is here, and because there is a valid and good reason for it. Gifts I open to with no guarantees offered or expected.

Can we do it? Yes. Will we do it? Only you can say.