On Signs

I promised a post about signs a week ago and I will need to write one that is more in depth in the future. Today, I want to touch upon the concept of signs over all.

See, my second to last day in Japan, I looked up at the sky as I walked and I thought to myself the following questions:

“I wonder what will happen to all the signs that have found me during this trip?
Will they go away?
Will I look back on them as a memory, realizing that I imaged them all?
Will they appear while I continue my life journey back at home?
Will I get new signs?”

I landed in Los Angeles to one of the best welcomes EVER as well as my first sign that all was okay, a ladybug…

Ladybug luggage tag at LAX baggage claim.
Ladybug luggage tag at LAX baggage claim.

I’m not going to go back into what the ladybug signifies, but I will say that it is my guiding sign that I’m on the right track, or path, or better yet that things will be okay. That luggage tag I caught eye of as I wheeled my luggage cart out to the exit. It was a quick glance, but it stopped me in my tracks and I took a picture.

Back when I was wondering about the state of my signs, after three months of seeing them all over Japan, I ended with the decision to just take them for what they were. Signs letting me know everything would be okay, even if I never saw them again. Even if in five years they just seems like figments of my imagination.

After landing in LA and seeing the bug above,  I realized that I was where I was meant to be and that good things were on the horizon.  I should note that when I felt this same way about finding the Paper Goddess in Echizen, the woman who hosted me told me she found a problem with me saying that. I’ve since realized that she and I have different life philosophies. I by no means begrudge her for that difference. In fact, I wish her the best in life with her philosophy, but I choose to keep believing in mine. I firmly believe that sometimes you just have a feeling/sense that you are in the right place at the right time. When you feel that you have to accept it and run with it. I felt that way about Echizen and I feel the same way about my signs.

This all comes to play because the signs kept showing themselves in California. Not necessarily in the same way as they had in Japan, although some things did (ladybug), but they did appear. To say I was shocked is an understatement.

Here’s the thing about signs: I believe they appear,without rhyme or reason, when you’re on the right track. When you’re on the wrong track they appear only because you are looking for them. I say this quite confidently because I’ve been in both positions. I’ve both wanted something so badly that I sought it out intentionally and saw signs everywhere, and wanted to be rid of something so badly that I’ve gone so far to ask for guidance from above to forget it, to get over it, and the signs have shown themselves as bright as a neon-lit sign in Times Square.

I’ve always been a big fan of the Universe and our spiritual connections. I am a total horoscope lover and believer. In my youth, I believed that coincidences were every where and a sign of fate (which I still believe in), but now I believe that there are no coincidences. Every thing does happen for a reason.  In Japan, I had no choice but to dig deep into that side of me that loves philosophy and has one good existential crisis a year, to understand the world of nature and my deep connection to the signs in the natural world guiding me; the signs that touch into my heart and intuition, aka gut.

I know, it sounds like I’m talking BS again, but I’m serious here. I’m serious only because I questioned whether the signs would guide me post-Japan and I can honestly say that now, 18 days after leaving Japan, where the signs began, they are still following me.  Today, as I walked to Starbucks, I noticed one of the signs, a plant, along my way. That plant was along side my car yesterday evening when I parked at the grocery store on an errand. In the grocery store yesterday, as I walked toward the mangoes, I stopped in front of a display that had a ladybug on it.

It is important to mention that I had some thoughts in my mind that were questioning and bordered on insecure. In Japan, I learned that those moments-when doubts, insecurity, and questions prevailed-were the moments when the signs found me and found me strong; quickly correcting my thoughts and reminding me to just keep believing. To remember that all will be well as long as I keep faith and trust in myself. To remember that not everything I think is correct, real, or even true for that matter.

Today, I saw my plant, smiled, laughed, raised a cheeky fist up to the heavens, but only realized later in the day the truth in believing the signs…I received an email from Danielle LaPorte titled “55 inspirational quotes on desire & making it happen” and there in the middle was the following quote by Rumi (another sign within the signs),

“What you seek is seeking you.”

It is hard to explain this to people who don’t believe, or don’t see the magic in every day life. Not only is it hard, it can be exhausting. It’s caused me to ask myself if I’m crazy and yet, constantly my heart and intuition tell me I am not. I know not what the outcome will be, but it’s nice to feel that these signs that have found their way to me from a period of time full of confusion and uncertainty are still with me in a period filled with more peace, happiness, and security than I’ve felt in a long time.

Actually it’s the same feeling I felt back when I had that little dream that launched my stationery company. It’s important to follow the signs. Especially when they come from the heart.


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S2 Stationery & Design

A rule-breaking designer, artist & entrepreneur who's passionate about paper and handcrafting stationery. I also write, travel, and focus on eco + social good.

2 thoughts on “On Signs”

  1. Reminds me of a quote from The Alchemist: “The simple things are also the most extraordinary things, and only the wise can see them.” Signs, symbols and dreams follow the seeking heart. Your posts open my heart pilgrim! Continued blessings to you.

    1. Panya, my friend, thank you for this lovely comment. While I was experiencing these signs, I purchased a copy of “The Alchemist” on my kindle because I felt this NEED to read it. Funny, how as I started to read it in the freezing cold nights in Fukui, I read in the Introduction that the edition I was reading was the 10th Anniversary edition and was dated November 2002. There I was reading it in November 2012, so making it 20 years old. I took that as a simple sign as well. 🙂 More posts soon, friend! LOVE!

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