A few weeks ago, I attended a birthday party with my four-year-old daughter Abigail. It was a costume party and, Abigail chose to wear her ballet outfit and go as a ballerina. We arrived at the party and, as to be expected, the children were all dressed in different costumes; princess, astronaut, superhero. It wasn’t soon after Abigail joined the fun that I saw one of her friends, dressed as Snow White, run up to her and bluntly ask, “Why are you wearing a ballet outfit?”
I thought it was a funny question considering we were at a costume party and Abigail responded simply, “Because I’m a dancer.” But the little girl continued and asked again, and then again this time to her mother in front of Abigail. I could feel myself become increasingly protective, like a lioness protecting her cub.
I couldn’t help but wonder what the big deal was. Why was it such a “thing” that Abigail was wearing a ballet outfit, at costume party no less?
Then moments later, I heard the sound of whimpering in a quiet corner aside from the party. It was Snow White. She was softly crying, and her mother was asking what was wrong. The little Snow White replied, “Why couldn’t I wear my ballet costume like I wanted to?”
She was pestering Abigail because Abigail was wearing something she had wanted to wear, but couldn’t. Because she couldn’t be a ballerina for whatever reason, seeing someone else dressed as one made her sad, and caused her to show anger or judgment. It got me thinking, why can’t girls – and even women – say what they want? Why do we assume that the things we want are “not appropriate” or “not possible?” Why do we make our lack about someone else’s gain?
Last week we welcomed the month of Pisces, the twelfth and last month of the lunar calendar, and also the perfect month to ask these questions. Kabbalists teach that Pisces, or Adar in Hebrew, is a prime opportunity to draw down joy and happiness from the Supernal world, expanding our lives and our fulfillment. This energy offers an infinite well of joy, not only for the four weeks under Pisces but the entire year. We are all meant to be fulfilled and happy, the Creator’s desire is not for us to feel lack or sadness. So this month you have an invitation: what makes you happy? And do you feel empowered to ask for it?
As adults, we probably don’t find ourselves sulking at a party because someone went as a ballerina and we went as Snow White. But can you think of a time that someone else’s success made you notice your lack?
Have you ever watched a friend or colleague achieve something you have been too afraid to ask for or pursue yourself?
And now the big question: What is it that you truly want? What brings you real happiness? Have you ever let yourself really think about it?
Well, the time is now! The energy of Pisces is available to us to increase and expand our happiness. What does that look like for you? Is it increased health? A career change? Maybe it’s something small, like a deep-down dream you’ve always had to learn the tango. Whatever it is, what can you do today to harness the joyous energy of the month and begin to draw down your joy?
When we create happiness for ourselves, we help to create it for those around us as well. Making your happiness a priority is a gift that is given to everyone. While you may feel lack in the face of someone else’s fulfillment, it is really a gift showing you where you can grow your joy even more. Rav Brandwein explains that the moment we can shift our consciousness to know that true happiness is a gift from the Creator, is the moment when we can maintain high levels of joy in our lives no matter what is going on around us. Every situation is, in fact, an opportunity to change and therefore find everlasting joy and fulfillment.
Therefore, if someone else’s success is causing you to notice your lack, congratulations! You now know what it is that you want! And you can begin to take the steps to manifesting it for yourself.
And lastly, as you explore the ways, you hold yourself back and examine where you feel lack remember that the quickest antidote is gratitude. True happiness grows when we nurture an appreciation for everything that we already have and everything that we already are. This is the perfect time of year to do this work, to create blessings and joy, and to ask for what we want.
It is also helpful to know that you are not alone in this endeavor. All of the blessings and good fortune we experience come from the Light. When we remove our ego and our sense of lack or control, we begin to co-create with The Creator. There is a mantra for the month of Pisces, “Nothing of me,” meaning nothing I have done with my talents, genius, or perseverance has brought anything good into my life. Only the Creator can awaken miracles.
Our job is to stay present, cultivate daily gratitude, and keep ourselves focused on nurturing our joy and happiness.
THOUGHT INTO ACTION
This week write down three things you really want. Don’t think of how “impossible,” “inappropriate,” or “unrealistic” they might be. Ask yourself how you can start bringing these things into your life.