Embracing Ennui: Happiness Days 23-24

photo 1Going into the 2nd week of a houseful of teenagers and young adults (now there are 4!), a degree of ennui has set in.  At first, my response is to fill the void with activities, outings, walks, anything to move the listlessness that abounds.  See last week’s blog for details.

And yet, now, the energy would not move.  I tried surrendering to it, but it seemed to just permeate rather than dissolve.  I look to my cat Comet for inspiration, since he seems to spend most of his life embracing ennui.  I asked him how he does it with grace.  He didn’t give me any answer directly, only barely moving while I stroked his soft coat.

And so, I went to work, did my errands, visited with friends, and when I’d return home, that holding, stagnation, maybe it was rest?, filled the home.  The palpable lack of motivation was wearing on me.  So I went into a deeper meditation/Reiki state to seek answers.

I’m embracing a path of happiness for 100 days, was there happiness in ennui?  Could there be?  I’m hardly a typical  type A person, but I definitely am a go-getter and on the move a bit, shaking things up, making things happen, these qualities bring happiness from me and to me.  I am easily bored, and when nothing is going on, it feels like something is wrong.

But maybe that’s an outdated belief I need to look at.  So I’m still working through finding the joy of it, wrapping my mind around how such an existence can bring happiness to the teenagers that have infused my life for the next few weeks.  They seem perfectly content waking up at 1pm, getting going around 3, regardless that a lot of things have happened already.   Events have come and gone this week without attendance.  Default is renting movies, listening to Ipod, watching Youtube.  My inner voice cries out, ‘this isn’t engaging stimulation!!!’, but perhaps, being a teen in 2014 is being in an overstimulated world, maybe for them, this introverted focus, this silent watching is the balance they seek.

My balance is different.  I like being out in the world, tasting, interacting, hearing something live, fresh, new.  Sigh.  Today I seek to find that.  If teenagers wish to join, so be it.  I’m happy to be living a different path.  Life is so much more.

Eileen Dey 2014

Taking care of Self: Happiness Day 22

ioI’ve gotten pretty good at self-care after all these years of teaching and practicing Reiki, but I’m reminded daily of it’s importance to maintain balance and harmony, and above all happiness!

It’s a beautiful summer day, and a quick blog before I venture back out into nature, sun and fresh air.  Had some chiropractic this morning to help a neck ache get better and hanging out with like-minded community always boosts spirits.

Next on my list is a discovery walk, to see what literally lies ahead on my path.  There are probably a whole host of work-related items I’m overlooking, but I can’t seem to wrangle myself into my office chair for long to stay put when my energy just wants to expand!

Self-care for me is listening to the wisdom of my body.  I spent a whole day yesterday teaching my form of it, Insight Reiki, which upholds that the body doesn’t lie.  It tells you what it needs and you can’t ignore that when you get a message so clear.  It’s a direct knowing, more like intuition than intellect.

So, I’m happy to follow that, and take in the scenery and bring that energy back into the world at large.

Eileen Dey 2014

21 Days of Happiness: Reflections

21days.fw_Wow, 3 weeks has flown by since I started this self-imposed challenge of 100 days of mindful happiness.  Today’s happiness comes from my partner Richard’s autistic son Walter, sitting on the couch next to my cat Comet.

Walter (age 15) is usually a bundle of energy, talking about Power Rangers, Godzilla or whatever else draws his attention for the moment.  Right now, he’s giving Comet Reiki (whether he knows it or not) and the kitty responds by lounging across his lap.  It’s truly magical to watch.

And since Walter’s arrival, and that of his other teenage siblings, I’ve experience many moments of surprising happiness (in the role of step mom).  There have been other moments of being challenged, for sure, but this blog experiment is one of focusing on the positive.  So that’s what I chose to do with this one.

Walter is finding soothing music on his Ipad to play for Comet.  He responds to gentleness with gentleness.  I hope that everyone gets a chance to see this.  But like moments, not sure how long it will last.

It’s a quiet time now, of soothing transcendence.  Now everyone is back in the house, Richard, and his other children, Joseph (18) and Cassandra (12).  And this aura of peace permeates the house now.

Eileen Dey 2014

Reiki Retreat Happiness coming up 8/8-10!

RetreatCan’t wait for the Reiki to shine all across the Mount Vernon/Darrington Vallley next month!  We’ll be having an incredible time tuning in to the land, flower and fauna that call this place home.

I hope you can join us in celebration and community.  Details are listed below.  For images on the retreat, visit our site www.reikifellowship.com.

Replenish yourself with a relaxing weekend on this 220 acre woodland petting farm and sanctuary.  Retreat includes inspiring talks, walks, guided meditations, fire ceremonies and of course, Reiki healing circles!

All meals, snacks and comfortable shared lodging included.  Open to those new to Reiki & practitioners and teachers of all lineages.

$280 for the whole weekend.  Register early!
Friday 8/8 Check-in 5:00pm (if you need later registration, let me know please)
Sunday 8/10 Check-out 11:00am

Camp Brotherhood was founded by Rabbi Levine and Father Treacy (who hosted the interfaith TV show, “Challenge” on KOMO for over 14 years).   This is a place of peace and harmony with guiding principles of universal compassion and unconditional love.  Located in Mount Vernon, WA.  Directions and information on retreat provided upon registration.

In love with lavender happiness

Lavender-FestivalAnother beautiful day in the Northwest and what a better way to spend summer celebrating lavender!  On this 19th day of mindful happiness I inhale deeply and let the power of this flower soothe my heart, my soul and my mind.

In all the years I’ve lived here, I’ve never been, so I’m looking forward to the journey, with my dear friend Trudy Wendelin, the amazing Reiki master and acupuncturist who has circumnavigated the world several times as a cruise ship healer!  We took a road trip years ago to the Baja and had a blast, so this is our Seattle version, but hopefully a longer sojourn at some point!

Trudy will be teaching the Reiki and 5 Elements workshop this fall, and if you have Reiki 1 and want to learn more about Chinese medicine, this is the lady!

Eileen Dey 2014

Didjeridoo Reiki Soundscape Happiness tonight!

didjeridoo-dreamtimeTonight at Embrace the Moon, 1716 NW Market Street from 7-9pm Carol Canterbury and the percussionists that make up the Reiki Fellowship!

Let’s get the groove on and celebrate summer tribal style!

Hope you can all join us.  No prior experience of Reiki required.  I have tons of happiness (day 18) for the Soundscape, which is a monthly event always filled with light and new sounds!


Eileen Dey 2014

Self-employment and patriotism happiness day 17

Self-EmployedFinally I have a day off in the middle of the week to go partake in this beautiful Northwest summer.  This is the joy of being self-employed, being able to have flexibility in your work schedule.

What lies ahead today?  A trip to the zoo?  A nature hike?  Some other outing where three teenagers and myself journey together in celebrating life?

Yesterday I had a full day of clients, who’s stories inspire me as they search to find meaning in their own lives despite the tragedies that life often brings.  At the end of the day, I found fellowship in my sober friends and watched an inspiring movie on the courage and bravery of Navy Seals in Afghanistan.

Whenever I watch a film, attend and event, or do the Reiki work I do with veterans, I am in awe and gratitude for the service of the men and women who fight for our country.  I’ve blogged about this before.  I am a liberal patriot.  I am happy to be an American.  There is an outreach organization called Soldier’s Project where mental health counselors offer services to wounded warriors.  It’s our way of giving back.

But both these topics, self-employment and patriotism, make me extremely happy.  They are about celebrating freedom.  No country’s politics are perfect, but the US is good model that has allowed all of the work I do, for civilians and and veterans to benefit.  For those that have seen the film Team America, you can play the soundtrack to this blog!

Ok, off my high horse, now on to the day ahead.

Eileen Dey 2014

Sweet 16 Reflections of Happiness

167905_1778247427037_2827614_nMy 16th year of life was probably the best of my whole teenage experience.  I was a junior in high school and life felt effortless and free.  This photo captures a lot of that.  I remember hanging out with friends, listening to a lot of 80′s hair bands like Bon Jovi, Motley Crue, Judas Priest, Def Leppard, Twisted Sister, Poison, Cinderella, Ratt and the first band I got into, Van Halen, which by 1996 had broken up and were forming Van Hagar and David Lee Roth’s solo career.

Living in New Jersey, we listened to the NY Howard Stern radio, watched MTV, went to the mall, once in awhile took the bus or train into Manhattan down into the Village and of course, during the summer, went down the shore.

In NJ, you get a learner’s permit at 16 and a driver’s license at 17, so I remember being driven around a lot by friends that year, and then later, by my first ‘serious’ boyfriend, Brian Shook.  He was (and still is) totally into hockey, so I remember watching a lot of games on TV with him and his best friend.  We’d eat Twinkies and Yoo-Hoo, this chocolate shake like drink, I haven’t seen out here in the West, but I’m sure you could still probably find it.

My friend Ann-Marie (in the photo with me) and our other gal pals, Gina and Lynn went to an unforgettable rock concert together (I’ll have to scan the photos).  Stern’s radio station had a contest to win the chance for Bon Jovi to come play at their school.  The private school I had gone to won the contest and my Dad was on the Board of Directors, so he was able to score me 4 tickets.  It was like winner the teenage lottery!

All 4 of us got decked out in 80′s zebra stripe/leather skirts and big hair and got to have an intimate experience with my favorite band on the planet.  My friend Ann-Marie even jumped on Jon Bon when he was leaving to go into his limo.  And my Dad went into the band’s ‘green room’ (the boys gym locker room) and got Richie Sambora’s autograph for us.

It’s a year I’ll probably always cherish.  I’m grateful and of course incredibly happy when I reminisce about it!

Eileen Dey 2014

Mexican Teen Happiness Day 15

22742_1299065607791_843435_nWhat an interesting life!  So here’s a photo of me as a teenager with this t-shirt and fast forward to now, almost 30 years later, and I’m hanging out these next 3 weeks with Richard’s teenagers, who just flew in from Mexico.

They were all born here in the States, but have pretty much grown up South of the Border, it’s a complex story, but with a lot of effort, on Richard’s part, their finally getting an opportunity to know their dad.

The whole experience has changed us both, in such an incredible way, and I find that I’ve become a more patient step parent, an identity I never thought I’d have.

I created a guide book of activities, events and festivals for everyone, and we’ll see what we actually end up doing.  But today, I’m happy they get a chance to indulge in the richness that is a Northwest summer.

I have to ask parents out there, does your own ‘inner teen’ come out when you are around other teens?  I’m listening to the radio station Hair Nation, 80′s heavy metal and I have a more carefree approach to life, even though I’ve got my clients and work ahead of me over this month.  But then, this is just the first day.  Let’s see what happens, because if I do recall, my own teenage years weren’t always ‘peachy keen’ as we used to say.

But I’ve got a positive attitude about it.  Perhaps more than two weeks of writing about happiness has something to do with it.  Perhaps maturity.  Perhaps a loving partner.  And I’m sure lots of good weather and sunshine help!!!

Eileen Dey 2014

Reflections on Reiki Happiness Day 14

0308091538-1Finished a weekend of Reiki training and had to reflect back on all the years of doing this work.  If I had to conceptualize it, it might look like this:

1994  Had my first introduction to bodywork via the Polarity Therapy program at the NY Open Center

1995  Found Reiki in a listing for a New Age phone book in a laundromat in NJ.  Began my first studies

1996  Deep into Reiki training, circles and assisting my Usui Reiki Ryoho teacher Cherie, with classes

1997  Moved to Philadelphia from NJ and worked with Alena Heble, a non-traditional Reiki master and completed my own master training

1998  Within a year had started teaching my first classes and holding my own circles establishing part of the Philly Reiki community

1999  Moved to Seattle following an intuitive vision, began meeting the local Reiki community

2000 Received spiritual name of Crystal Sky and took sabbatical and then pretty much permanent leave from the world of being employed to self-employment

Fast forward to 2014

That’s how the last 14 years have felt, in terms of my work with Reiki and it’s work with me.  I have 20 years of Reiki Happiness to celebrate!

Eileen Dey 2014


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