Thanks to by brother Kevin MacConkey for the plug and the kind words about Music Mindful.
Kevin is another kindred spirit and soul that I disconnected with for too long as we both moved around the country. Aside from being an all around great guy and friend, Kevin holds a place in my heart for a couple of other personal reasons. He designed the Celtic cross tattoo on my right arm, and laid the ink into my arm in the comfort of my own dining room a number of years ago, over a couple cold ones and attracting the macabre interest of my then young daughter. When we were done we slapped the Vaseline on it, taped plastic over it, and were off to a concert in downtown Rochester where we caroused as I bled out into the plastic and eventually through the tape into the sleeve of my jacket. Alcohol thins the blood you see, but in those days drinking wasn’t an option, especially while seeing live music.
Kevin is also a very talented guitar player and singer, and used to sit in with the bands I’d play with and go out to see in the Rochester circuit. To this day I can’t hear anyone (including the Dead) play Sugaree without at some moment hearing Kevin’s unique vocal styling in my head.
It’s reassuring to find others on similar paths, discovering the same universal truths and evolving as souls.
It’s even more reassuring to find others using the art of writing to connect with the universe at a deeper level.
Kevin is the creator of, and chief contributor to The Daily Kickstand, which started as a simple daily post to Facebook and now has blossomed into a series of writings and self-improvement offerings. Kevin found his way out of crippling depression and anxiety using writing as a medium, and eventually found that it “…helps empower others to find the same love and light that led me from the darkness.”
My own writing started as a means of simply bringing friends and family up to speed on the convoluted trajectory my life had taken as I steamed towards my own spiritual awakening (though I had no idea what it was at the time), and the aftermath of that awakening that reshaped nearly every aspect of what I had come to know as my “normal” existence. Those writings became much more than a mere status report. Most of my friends, colleagues, family, and some people who were virtually strangers when they read the early drafts have connected with me at a much deeper level of understanding and compassion since, and many of them have reported their own epiphanies since reading them and relating my story to their own.
Now, on the other side of that awakening, I continue to learn, grow, struggle and worry daily. Writing and talking to people – any people- had become my therapy and the medium by which the universe communicated. Simply searching out people that “may have a story to share” and suggesting my story may be part of theirs has led to meeting amazing people, each with a unique message (or several) for me, pertinent to my journey and evolution. It seems that I in turn have been providing in some small part what these others need to continue their journey.
…all this a result of writing down your thoughts and talking to people about them.
Kevin is a bit further down the road than I , with volumes of great essays available on the The Daily Kickstand. After a surface level exploration, I found the following ones resonated with me and my journey, so if you’re looking for a good place to begin looking for some inspiration and guidance, you might try starting here:
- No, it is not, but it gets easier. Great tips for being mindful about, well…being mindful.
- My mind asks “what else would you do?!”, but I see people every day who wallow and suffer in their pain instead of using as a force for positive change, and I’ve done it myself to some degree.
- Sage advice. I think I have numbers one and five down, but still working on two through four
- Can’t repeat it enough, can we? YOU are the only person preventing your happiness. That, and a couple other tips.
The Daily Kickstand is full of great work by a great guy, and I’m happy for him and all he has accomplished over the past several years. I would have noticed sooner but I thought all this mindfulness and compassion stuff was hippy bullshit up until the last year, and now I stand as a testament to the fact that the universe talks and listens, most coincidences are not merely coincidences, ancient forces still surround us and push energies around with concerted purpose, and every person can manifest their craziest dreams if they are aligned with their true purpose.
Thanks to Kevin and everyone at The Daily Kickstand for being the latest in a short but growing line of others to ensure me I’m not alone, and that I’m not (completely) crazy.