The Gift of Presence

Unconditional Love: The Gift of Presence





I think sometimes we tend to use words when what we want to do is to express feeling.

I think sometimes we make that which is so simple, extraordinarily complex.

I think sometimes we allow fear to re-direct our steps when really we just don’t know “how” and we want to stay and be shown the way.

I think sometimes we withdraw our presence–the only thing we truly have to give–because we have been taught and conditioned to do so… and any other way is beyond what we know.

And unconditional love says:

“I do not understand.  Yet I am here.  I see you. I hear you. And I love you just the same.

Thank you for being you. I *love* your essence.  I appreciate your presence in my life.”

Much peace,


Reminder: Experiment. Explore.  Experience.













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Comments on: "The Gift of Presence" (20)

  1. yes! to all of this. I think so too. And though I don’t always understand, I do know this: words can communicate love, sometimes, though never as simply as touch can… complexities can diffuse into simplicity in an instant, fear can be sat with until it looks us in the eyes and says, “I know. Me too. Let’s do it. Let’s stay anyway. I’m with you.” And then, and all of a sudden, presence returns, magnified by all that has been attempted, all who have tried and failed, tried and failed, and come back, again and again, and all who have shone their light into the darkness to lead the way back to the heart of the matter. You inspired me to post some of my morning reflections today. Thank you and thank you and thank you again. You are a Joy to know!

    • Hi Molly,
      I do believe that words are powerful–I *love* words mixed in just the right way and presented as a wonderful gift to me. However, sometimes people fear they do not have the “right” words and allow that fear to cause them to withdraw.

      The power of presence I share through these specific photos and words is the power of ‘just being there’. Of saying, I am here. I do not have to understand, nor to follow, just to be right here…that presence of unconditional love can transform anything and everything.

      I read somewhere that the greatest ‘punishment’ is solitary confinement…that people wish to be around others and when stripped of that freedom (unwillingly) suffering is immense. Yet, how often do we use that same technique of withdrawal within our own connections? Purposefully removing our presence to sting, to wound, and to hide. What if, instead, we learned to stand there and be present to the expansive, how peace-filled, how wonderful! What if we learned to do this with self–what a gift!

      (However, if one is in the process of being emotionally or physically abused, please withdraw and re-center–boundaries are amazingly healthy in this instance!).

      Thank you for affirming love :)

  2. This is so beautiful! I love what you’ve expressed. I have been noticing how frequently I withdraw my presence out of fear. With that awareness, I remember that love is everywhere, it is the essential fabric of life. And that brings me back and makes it okay to be fully present. Thank you for sharing your essence!

    • Hi Lynn,
      Thank you:)

      You are not alone in withdrawing your presence; it was my wish to present perhaps another, more peace-filled way to enrich our connections.

      What a beautiful affirmation: “love is everywhere, it is the essential fabric of life”. When we embody those words, we allow our hearts to experience freedom as we allow self to be fully present in this moment.

      Thank you for magnifying love!

  3. Megan Bord said:

    I think… I really like this post! Plus, I really really (that’s two really’s) like seeing your gorgeous new picture each time I visit your site. Hellooooooo, Stunner!

    What you wrote sounds about right. I know that I certainly withdraw my presence when I’m uncomfortable — whether it’s from something or someone. Distraction is a way of withdrawing (and humans have the most delicious ways of distracting themselves these days, yes?).

    Holding space – and holding our ground – is probably one of the toughest things to do because it means we have to become vulnerable when we probably don’t want to. In the “fight or flight” analogy, it would be considered “fight.” And it takes courage. Courage to be tender and vulnerable — imagine that?!

    Loving you and loving this simple, sweet post which speaks VOLUMES.

    • Hi Megan,
      Thank you:) May you enjoy the photo while it is in it’s current location…soon to change all things *joy* eventually do *grin*.

      A concept I am currently exploring within my own life is the concept of allowing each moment to be a sacred container. A sacred container is where we feel most comfortable allowing heart whispers and creative expression to rise fully. So, if I allow this moment to be my sacred container (versus a specific place “over there”) I may then allow my self the freedom and joy of being fully present. Unconditionally. Because even if fear is present, I would feel comfortable and safe.

      For me, the ability to be present is similar to my ability to trust. When I know I am tapped into flow, living in alignment, I trust that all is well, and being present (even in the midst of fear or uncertainty) is effortless. Trust seems to be something we may open to, while courage seems to be something we think we have to “attain”…or that someone else has in magnitude that we do not. I have found that the most “courageous” people are actually the most fear-filled and likely to withdraw presence rather than invest. In general, we feel safe pushing our edges beyond what we know possible when “we are in control” which allows us the illusion of courage. When are we really “in control”?

      Thank you for magnifying love…and for holding space as we continue to explore and experiment on our individual paths!

  4. jean sampson said:

    I know that I withdraw when I am scared or feel that I can’t help someone or that they “reject” me, maybe because they are scared, too. I think this is an area of myself that could use a little examining. Right now, my life is calling me to be “present” no matter what, because my husband has realized that he needs some help in healing his life. I want to be present even when he does not want me to be—very old pattern. I usually do go away —–has been a pattern in our marriage from the very first. Since I am aware of it, I can be the one to just hang in there, even when he says he doesn’t want me to. Thanks for helping me to be aware of this.
    Lots of love and hugs to you, Joy. And the picture of you is lovely!

    • Hi Jean,
      Thank you:) *grin* After the transformational wave of the last few months, I finally felt “ready” to be photographed (teaser: the subject of my next article).

      As Megan said, we are conditioned to withdraw when we are afraid…again this is neither “good” nor “bad”; another option is the gift of presence as I presented here–my way of presence to self and to another, then to world.

      We are curious in our actions, the whole push/pull dynamic–sometimes pushing away the very love we crave because we feel unworthy or “not enough” then sometimes pulling in the very presence that we need but then being upset with it. Curious.

      Thank you for sharing your experience! I cannot imagine what it feels like; you have wonderful energy and trust in universe and reflect to me so much that inspires me as I create within my own life. Your presence, energetic and physical, is healing for your husband and for all whom you connect with.

      Thank you for magnifying love:)

  5. Oh, what wise words for me to see/read today. All too often I’m so wordy. All too often, I forget that a calm hand can be worth a million calming words. Lovely.

    • Hi Jess,

      All too often I’m too wordy. I have learned, as you expressed here, that it is the gesture of being present that is transformational and empowering for the giver and the receiver.

      Thank you for affirming love!

  6. rosemary said:

    I am so with these other souls. I know for me I can be and many times I am very wordy because I am still learning to be confident that I am enough even in what I am saying… my love and concern for others is intense and yet I fear that without alot of words those that need to hear it won’t get it. Thank you for reminding me.

    • Hi Rosemary,

      What you have shared here is absolutely beautiful: “I am enough”; when we realize *we are enough* being present is effortless and a pleasure to share.

      I can convey with one heart-felt smile or one touch through my hand what one million words don’t even come close to saying. Those around you know that they are loved, they feel it beyond the words that you choose to share!

      Thank you for magnifying love:)

  7. that’s a great way of thinking, i love that new perspective :)

    • Hi Farouk,

      Thank you:) Do you practice sharing the gift of presence within your life? It is a wonderful way of being:)

  8. I’m fully with the idea of being present. You’re right thought, we often shrink away! It’s a practice.

    • Hi Sandra,

      “We often shrink away” is such a powerful insight! When we remove presence, we shrink; when we are present, we magnify.

      Thank you for affirming the practice of presence:)

  9. > I do not understand. Yet I am here.
    I like that. It helps for the strong, silent, type.

    • Hi J.D.,

      Thank you for sharing; often the strong silent types are the ones to withdraw because they don’t realize how significant their presence just as it is can be.

      It is lovely to see you here, thank you for your presence and for affirming this practice:)

  10. Excellence in action Joy!

    What you shared above is so right on…simplicity, presence…unconditional love…all such important ingredients for a full, rich and meaningful life based on heart wisdom.

    • Hi Evita,

      Thank you for the kind words:)

      What I hear in your reflection is: “a meaningful life based on heart wisdom“…it won’t be experienced in mind space, yet many of mainstream wish to relate from this surface level and wonder why they don’t feel unconditional love. We choose the space we relate from.

      Thank you for affirming presence and love:)

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