About a month ago, I was sitting at my desk. I have a large window in front and slightly to the right of me. From out of nowhere, a hummingbird flew into my line of view.
It hovered there in the middle of my open window while we gazed at each other for several seconds and it flitted off on its way.
I have lived in downtown Vancouver for about 7 years now and I have never seen a hummingbird in my 'hood. In fact, I don't know the last time I ever saw one anywhere!
My Mom's birthday was on Tuesday. She would have been 63. For those of you who haven't been reading my blog for awhile, it has been a year since she had a pulmonary embolism whilst canoeing in the Yukon (kind of a trooper) and 9 months since we said goodbye.
I told her that she could visit me anytime she wanted after she passed, but NOT to be too dramatic about it! Thinking she might be behind this incident...I immediately started researching what a visit from a hummingbird represented..
The hummingbird symbolizes many different concepts. Because of its speed, the hummingbird is known as a messenger and stopper of time. It is also a symbol of love, joy, and beauty.
Hummingbird is the creature that opens the heart. When the hurt that caused us to close our hearts gets a chance to heal, our hearts are free to open again.
I had been busily preparing for summer festivals and missing her more than ever. The reality of her physical absence was starting to hit pretty hard. Every little thing that happened in my life was immediately relayed to her via phone, text, email or Skype (she lived in a different province). She constantly encouraged me to chase my dreams and wholeheartedly believed in me.
By observing the Hummingbird, we see they are seemingly tireless. Always actively seeking the sweetest nectar, they remind us to forever seek out the good in life and the beauty in each day. Amazing migrators, some Hummingbirds are known to wing their way as far as 2000 miles to reach their destination. This quality reminds us to be persistent in the pursuit of our dreams, and adopt the tenacity of the Hummingbird in our lives.
Some of you know that I was pretty ill since returning from SE Asia/NZ in late 2008. I didn't know why and excuse my language but spent a SHIT TONNE of money and time trying to figure it all out as I just kept getting worse with time. Of course my Mom was my rock through it all...always there to give me hope and just to listen. I was at the end of my rope come March of this year. I felt like I had tried everything and literally had a 'come to Jesus' moment of surrender. 'I need help' and 'I can't do this anymore on my own' were sent out to the universe, God, my angels, Buddha, Allah, Jesus, Mom...anyone?
Someone was listening.
Someone was listening.
Not more than a few week later, I discovered an elixir (you wouldn't believe me if I told you what it was) that worked and...excuse my language again...I have felt fanfuckingtastic ever since!
When my Mom was here, there was nothing she wanted more than to solve this mystery so I could get on with living my life. Do I think she worked a little magic from the other side? I've never been more sure of anything...ever.
The hummingbird is able to fly backwards, teaching us that we can look back on our past. But, this bird also teaches that we must not dwell on our past; we need to move forward.
The hummingbird also has a powerful spiritual significance. In the Andes of South America the hummingbird is a symbol of resurrection.
It seems to die on cold nights, but comes back to life again at sunrise.
I honestly feel resurrected. Like a newborn babe. Every day that I feel human and normal is an absolute gift. Just being able to spring out of bed in the morning is a blessing to me. Being able to finally WORK consistently. Make commitments to people in advance. Engage socially! Make plans. TRAVEL!
When the hummingbird hovers over flowers while drinking nectar, we learn that we should savour each moment, and appreciate the things we love.
With hummingbird consciousness, we learn the truth of beauty. Our life becomes a wonderland of delights in flowers, aromas and tastes. We laugh and enjoy creation, we appreciate the magic of the present moment, and the magic of being alive.
At the beginning of my journey through SE Asia in 2008, I purchased a brass bracelet from a hill tribe lady in Chiang Mai, Thailand. I knew there was something very significant about buying that bracelet, but had no idea what it was at the time.
Several months later, I enclosed a letter with the bracelet to my Mom on her birthday (August 2008) that told of all the adventures it had encountered with me: scuba diving with tropical fish in the Perhentians, rock climbing in Vang Vieng, surfing days and dancing nights away in Bali, watching the sunset with monks on Phu Quoc Island, jumping off waterfalls in Luang Prabang and cavorting with dragons on Komodo Island. To my delight, she cherished the hell out of it and never took it off.
She was adamant that I take the bracelet when she left and I continue to wear it every day. Being a little bit famous for losing things (my Dad always said I would forget my head if it wasn't screwed on!), I decided I wanted a permanent way to remember her where I wear it, JUST in case!
I discovered this latin phrase in my very dear friend's (Natasha M. Freeman) novel, The Story of Q. I wrote in the post following my Mom's passing how the book had resonated with me and in particular the following excerpt:
VITA MUTATUR, NON TOLLITUR: Life is changed, not taken away.
"In ancient times," Master Lael said, "the descent of the soul into the human body was described as a type of 'death' through which the soul lives. Not because the soul actually died, but because it became contained within matter...Sunset symbolized the start of human life for this reason--because in setting, the sun sinking below the horizon imaged a containment of divine light, the soul immersed in earthly matter. Sunrise, on the other hand, was the freeing of the soul from matter."
When I learned of the similarities between the phrase and the hummingbird encounter, I became absolutely sure that this tattoo was going to happen on her birthday.
It is not commonly known that the fluttering wings of the hummingbird move in the pattern of an infinity symbol - further solidifying their symbolism of eternity, continuity, and infinity.
Life is not destroyed, but transformed.
In order to separate the beginning and end of the phrase, I placed a sun in between. The sun is symbolic of the fraternal aspect of guidance (yang) and the moon is maternal (yin). So I replaced the comma with a moon...matron of sea creatures and symbolic soul mate to water. The moon also represents potent change or renewal...a spiritual transition.
'Your soul, like the sun, is pure light, and contained within your soul an even brighter light - the light that lights the way through your human experience.'
- The Story of Q.
I wish she could be here physically to enjoy with me my newfound health and the exciting things that have been happening. But I know she is always here...in lieux of the phone, texts or personal visits, she whispers and guides me through the wind, the flowers, the trees...and the hummingbirds.
That ain't so bad:)
That ain't so bad:)
Love. Joy. Beauty. That's my Mom.
I love you more than all the flits that all the hummingbirds have ever flitted..in the world!
Hummingbird Symbolism Source: http://mara-gamiel.blogspot.ca/2009/09/hummingbird-symbolism.html