Swan – Taking Action after Searching Within – Picture to Ponder – v6 – Issue 10

by Sheila Finkelstein on March 10, 2010

Today’s swan photos were taken on the hotel grounds between sessions of Suzanne Evans “Be the Change Event” in which I was a participant last month. Before I describe the pictures and how they fit in with our lives, I want to update you on some exciting news.

If you are a new subscriber to Picture to Ponder, you may be unfamiliar with my Banana Sky DVD (more below). The exciting news is that it is going onto the retail market, being offered by a large company that does programs for caregivers. This means that our price, to match theirs, will be increasing by a minimum of four dollars at midnight on Sunday, March 14th.

To bring the restorative benefits of nature into your home any time, day or night, on your TV or your computer, at the still-low price of $7.97 you can go directly to the ORDER PAGE, or for Ellen Britt’s Video Testimonial and others, plus a one-minute preview, go to BANANA SKY DVD.

Today’s Photos

swan in pond
Considering what’s next

swan searching deep within
Searching deep within

swan still searching
Still searching for the last pieces rippling out into the world

Swan with top of head missing from photo
Confident in the reminder that it’s not all in the head –
Trust the whole body

Though these photographs were not taken with any of the above captions in mind they are reflective of my current journey into self-discovery. I suspect you, too, may relate to some of what’s expressed in the captions.

And, MORE IMPORTANTLY, I invite you to BE with each of the images without my words. Enjoy each for what it is and, if any “send” a message to you, play with that.

Self-Reflecting Queries
For today’s queries, I invite you to make a query for yourself from each of the photo captions above, IF this FITS for you.

In this week’s Writers Camp with Julie Jordan Scott, mentioned in Picture to Ponder last week, I have been grappling with the role of writing in my life. Some people are “driven” to write. That’s not the case with me.

Aside from my daily Morning Pages (Julia Cameron’s THE ARTIST’S WAY), where writing frees me up for the day, writing often feels like a “burden” and I do it because I made a commitment to do so, such as for this weekly Picture to Ponder.

One of the recurring themes in Picture to Ponder has been the freeing power of taking action, one step at a time, “getting out of our heads” (Swan photo #4). I invite you to look into your life to see if there is a current place where you are “burrowing” your head (Swan photo #2). If so, what single action can you take to start yourself in motion?

Is there an intention or commitment behind it? If not, setting that could be your first action step.

As always, have fun with this, and please share your experiences in the COMMENTS below.

Banana Sky DVD
Banana Sky DVD documents the life of a banana plant from pre-fruiting the the end of the life of the one plant. As importantly it reflects the beauty of the experiencing nature, particularly that of sunlight.

I discovered that watching a slide show of a selection of the photos would always relax me, especially during the moments I was experiencing hard-to-control anger, as a caregiver, at the effects of Parkinson’s Disease on my beloved Sam and, consequently, on both of us.

Sensing the possibility and power of the Banana Sky DVD video, I contacted Jeannie Fitzsimmons to use her healing music as an integral part of the experience.

The resulting DVD was set up as an endless loop that will play continuously on a DVD player connected to your TV, reaching those who are not on computers, and on any computer DVD player.

Though initially targeted toward caregivers, Banana Sky DVD has become popular with anyone looking to have immediate, 24/7, access to the healing powers of nature anytime.

As mentioned above, the price will be increasing to $12 at midnight on Sunday, March 14th. Save four plus dollars by going to ORDER now, or PREVIEW for more information and to read testimonials first if you wish.

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Lynn Ward March 10, 2010 at 3:07 pm

Sheila, your swan pictures are so much more interesting than mine, it’s hard to believe they’re the same swan! So I’m asking myself: Was I only looking for the ordinary? The posed? What other delicious things am I missing because I’m either not looking for them or have a preconceived notion about what they should look like?

It’s time to go back to Paying Attention 101!

Thanks for the reminder!


Sheila Finkelstein March 10, 2010 at 3:45 pm

Thanks, Lynn. In this case, it may be that I took more photos than you did. Rather than simply waiting for the “right” one, I simply keep “shooting” once I start. Do you recall, were you looking for anything specific when you were photographing the swans?

Also, I think part of the difference may be that my camera has a stronger telephoto lens than yours. And, I “cheated” a little on these photos, using Photoshop Elements “Auto Smart Fix” Enhancement tool. It lightened the murky water and allowed more of the swan to show up. On a couple I used the “Sharpen” tool also.


tlmiller March 10, 2010 at 7:17 pm

Dear Shiela,
thank you for these images today. years ago, i was given the gift of a soul retrieval, during which i was told the swan was an important creature to me. i was aghast. to me, the swan may as well have been a disney fairy princess. i was blind to the beauty such a creature could offer, seeing it only as a fluffy, powerless symbol of haughty beauty or ego.

just today, i have released a personal block, allowing a certain voice to flow through me in writing. as soon as i saw your swan photos, another block broke.

this is my spontaneous, unedited response below. again, thank you!

i am singing my swan song. not the end of me, but of all that is NOT me. sing your song with me, you toads and lizards, sing with me all manner of beast. sing from treetop to river to muddy brown bog. sing your self free of the binding skins, shake feathers free to feel a new air. this place is rebirthing itself all around. and music of beasts shall herald it in. don’t expect fanfare of trumpeting horns, rather your breath will set the rhythm and pace. as a newborn arrives with eyes fresh from god, and we look on in wonder at something so pure – purely life, purely love, purely trust. but we lose our wonder while busy with “safety”… so sing your song to recover your own godly eye, that each beast you cross paths with may find again its own breath and song.


Sheila Finkelstein March 10, 2010 at 9:57 pm

Beautiful writing and sharing, Tracy. Thank you!


Sandra Mindus March 13, 2010 at 6:32 pm

Hi Sheila,
Your swan photos were beautiful, but also whimsical. They reminded me to see the lighter side of life more often.

Seeing your swans, I remembered my own series of swan photos. I was watching a pair of black swans and their offspring when one of the swans swam within an arm’s reach of me, and my camera. As I clicked the shutter button he cocked his head and floated even closer, checking me out. When he was satisfied that I was neither threat nor food source, he curved his neck, gave me a haughty stare, wheeled around and showed me quite a display of his tail feathers!

Your swan series has inspired me to take another look at mine and have some fun with the captions. And of course, to review the message in the Ugly Duckling story.

Thanks for giving me a creative nudge, Sheila.

Sandra Mindus


Sheila Finkelstein March 13, 2010 at 7:32 pm

Thanks for the fun story, great share and acknowledgment. I’d love to see your photos and read your “story” when finished. Do you have a place where you can post it?




Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post:

© 2017 Sheila Finkelstein - All Rights Reserved - Photography and Writing are by Sheila Finkelstein unless otherwise noted. For information contact Sheila[at]SheilaFinkelstein.com