Hope Dances – A Note on Optimism – Day 15

Hope Dances – A Note on Optimism – Day 15

“Life has its own rhythms, we just have to learn how to dance.” – Cristian Andrei Nica

Self-expression is discovered in each individual’s dance style.  We all feel the rhythm differently, uniquely perceiving the tempo as each of our steps moves according to the way we feel it.

It’s difficult to think your way through dancing.  You must embrace and engage the music with your heart.

When you feel what you write, your words dance with the rhythm of your life.

There can be no naysayers as they look upon your heart.  When we don’t feel well with our soul, we may look upon someone else’s joy as self-serving.  Yet it is the example of a joyous heart that feeds us hope. 

Lately, I question whether I’ve become a little too optimistic.  And I realize I may have just learned to dance without worrying about what onlookers may think.  Others who have ventured before me have given me that courage.  I share openly with an audience I do not know personally, yet feel connected to on another level.

Am I offended that you may not like the way I dance?

No, I appreciate your perspective.  For it is in the differences that we connect.

I believe it is not for us to examine another’s motivation.  Optimism drives my hope that we can all learn to appreciate someone near or far who has taken the struggles that life has handed them and learned how to dance!

I look forward to continuing my journey while reading and being inspired by yours.  You make “dancing” all that much more special for me. 

-Erika K Rothwell

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Hope is a Beacon – Day 14

Hope is a Beacon – Day 14

I have a confession to share with you. My hope journey comes only after a great battle in the wilderness I spoke of yesterday.

As I have been reading many of my readers’ and other writers’ stories I am amazed at the individual struggles and triumphs faced by each and every one of us as we travel through the seasons of life. And I am humbly reminded of the time when I wandered not only through the wilderness but also in the dark.

For me, there was a beacon in the darkness, first a glimmer that soon moved to a guiding light. My writing lit up the shadows, and many of my early poems share the exposure of my sunless days.

I would now like to share one of my poems with you all and embrace the pain and process that was necessary to navigate to arrive at 2019 – The Hope Journey.

My hope is to publish a book of the poems I wrote in the sea of suffering. Lost in the waves, my soul was revealed as I struggled to make peace with what I could not understand. The gift of healing through words is available as a beacon for all. And this greatest gift of all is called Hope.


Glimmer of hope
Silently beckoning
Sliver of light opens
The passageway to another place
Streaming rays point the way
Striving desperately to capture
Unwittingly suffocating the momentary essence
Crying out for its return
Elusive mystery refuses to obey
And yet
I wait

  • Erika K Rothwell
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Hope Believes – Day 13

Hope Believes – Day 13

Hope believes the time will come.  I didn’t sleep well last night.  For some reason, my body clock believed it was time to be awake from 1:30 a.m to 4:00 a.m.  And as my mind conversed with itself, it was agreed that sleep would come when it’s time.

Carrying a heavy head today, slowly and mechanically going through the necessary motions of the day eventually brought me to my desk.  It was time to write.  Yet my mind and heart couldn’t connect as easily as yesterday.  And so the conversation with myself continued, “you will write something of value when it’s time.”

As many of you may have read in previous posts, time is one of my fascinations.  So it is fitting that my relationship with hope has brought me to the intersection of time and space.

Over many years, I used up time hurrying and struggling to keep up with self-imposed expectations.  It is only recently I learned to slow down enough to appreciate the space between time and the power of the pauses while I patiently wait for the right time.

However, I still need to learn.  My hopeful anticipation when I’m assured of a certain outcome differs significantly from enduring a proverbial walk through a desert searching for a stream.  Why do we find it so much easier to retain a hopeful spirit as we move toward an expected outcome than to believe that our needs will be met when wandering in the wilderness without a clear destination in sight? 

It takes faith to bring us hope.  Hope is the stream in the desert.  It will sustain us.  So many times we forget to believe and we may lose our way.  But believing that everything will come in its own due time…may just be the hope that brings us what we need.

-Erika K Rothwell

Hope Believes – Read by Erika K Rothwell
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Hope – Waking Up to Possibilities – Day 12

Hope – Waking Up to Possibilities – Day 12

Another day, another way to embrace hope.  The spirit of motivation drives my year-long writing journey to appreciate one small word with a grateful heart.

The writing possibilities seem endless.  A year may not be long enough.

I began the journey with an acronym, “H-Help O-one P-Person E-Everyday.”  And although my focus on this venture began with a desire to look outside of myself and become a helper, my natural tendency is still to fold inward.  So I look to nature for inspiration.

As a flower reacts to an early frost by closing its petals, my protective reaction is swift.  Blooming too early can cause unstable conditions and potential damage to a flower’s petals.  However, with roots intact, early spring trustfully continues coloring the cold ground with vibrant displays of hope.  

Raw and unfiltered trust is uncommon in a world that may appear filled with pretension and self-protective cloaking.  Yet hope can drive our desire to face even a frigid environment.  As the sun shines on our well-intentioned efforts we are reminded of the warmth existing in the hearts of humankind and the path from vulnerability to love and support.  

My meditation for the day is a reminder for me and hope for others to risk blooming.  Don’t let fear of sharing your true colors or harsh conditions prevent your hopeful steps forward into unfamiliar territory.  You were born to HOPE.

-Erika K Rothwell

Waking Up to Possibilities – Read by Erika K Rothwell
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Hope is a Constant – Day 11

Hope is a Constant – Day 11

I discovered an old journal today filled with random thoughts and insights, speckled with a few plans.  What was most apparent, was an ongoing theme of discovery, searching for something that I felt needed to be found.

On one of the pages, the words were written, “All progress requires change, but not all change is progress.”  Because I’m not sure where the thought originated, I cannot assume it was mine,  thus giving credit where credit is due.  However this powerful quote stands beside a random thought that did enter my mind this afternoon, “Hope is a constant through change.”

We all have goals that drive our actions, but unanticipated change can upset our direction, breaking up an established routine, sometimes even sending us into a tailspin.

Thus, we must focus on a constant.  Power beyond the moment, a strength provided from a belief that moves mountains.  This support system cannot be broken.  It is always there for us, even amidst the upheaval of uninvited change.

And as I reread my own words in that 10-year old journal, I believe I may have just found the “magical” something I was looking for back then.  

Change doesn’t always move us forward, but it doesn’t have to move us backward either.  Holding on to hope keeps us steady through the waves of the unexpected.  From this balance point, we can surely progress.

– Erika K Rothwell

Hope is a Constant – Read by Erika K Rothwell
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