Monday, March 2, 2009

beginning again...

Hello to each of you and thank you for making the first few months of my entrance to blogger awesome. I've spent some time learning the ropes around here and think I am now finally ready to begin this blog spot wholeheartedly. Hence why I have created a new'll find me at: I hope you'll follow me there and our sharing journey will continue. Everyone have a super day/night and I will be typing with you soon ;o)
ps......I'll be checking back here periodically to make sure I don't lose touch with anyone who misses this message. At least for a month or so, then I'll be deleting this account.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Where the Past Meets Now

I'd walked this road many times before. Enough to know each bump and turn, even the gouges left unfilled where large stones had been removed to save on tires as they rolled through this small Georgian town.

Unpaved, there was almost a comfort floating above the road ahead. Dust blanketed my warm cheeks as I passed a long line of Cleveland Pear trees, marveled at a beautiful Autumn Purple Ash and quickly approached a single Weeping Willow in a clearing to my right.
Somewhere in the distance a Laughing Gull cackled as sparrows flew playfully above my head. It was a clear, warm autumn afternoon ...not too hot nor too cold...temperature near perfection as I paused to rest under the willow's shade.
It was here where my mind continued to wander. Years before, as a child I'd saundered down to the swimming hole with my brother, fishing pole in hand, eager to catch the biggest pickerel just to show him I could. After all, I was young and little but still could not be shown up by a boy, even if he was my brother.
Other travels along this roadway included Sunday jaunts to church. Always dressed like a little lady right down to my patten leather shoes and golden locket with my puppy's picture inside. After a couple of hours of sermons, singing and community connectedness, I'd skip home, often stopping under this same willow tree to catch my breath and steal a few more moments of childlike independence. "Oh to be so carefree again." I thought with a sigh.
My memories were abruptly interrupted by a sound I hadn't heard in years. *Creak* The wrought iron gate behind the willow tree had been loosened by a gentle breeze and in its old familiar whine it spoke to me.

Could it be? Even after all these years? Quickly I jerked to face the sound. Sure enough, the gate was still hanging from one hinge- three decades since I'd first noticed its dilemma. As a child, it had been the focal point for several ghost stories told by summer campfires or during teenage pajama parties. A smile crossed my face as I remembered telling my best friend one day I would write a screenplay about that eerie little gate.
Of course, the years melted away without another thought of my cinema creation, but today here I sat, still intrigued with this particular spot along the roadway to my childhood home.
Behind the wrought iron gate, gravestones painted the grassy hillside, tangible symbols of those who once frolicked these same neighborhoods long before I cut my first baby teeth.
The gate, untouched and unfixed, seemed to act as a passageway for the past to touch the future. Its whine, the suffering of those who walked before me. Their pain healed only by the goodness brought into the future from their efforts.
As my eyes squinted against the sun's piercing brightness, a thought materialized. Perhaps this gate's creaking should never be fixed. Let it catch the breeze and remain a constant reminder of past sacrifice. Allow that love to continue to touch our future, our now. Only by remembering where we came from, can we ever hope to move forward.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Facing Challenges- Part Three- Final

Hello my friends...
Here we are on part three and my thoughts are tired...perhaps a bit jumbled, but the blog must go on! lol... In part two we did some soul searching and after a few questions, we came to the realization that we matter. We validated our own existence. Confidence began to stir.

It is here we ask, "How do I change things? Make them more manageable? Attack problems successfully?" There are some great ideas found in quotations. The one that quickly comes to mind is, "When we change the way we look at things, the things we look at change." (Wayne Dyer) Let's see where this idea leads us...
Perhaps we've always wanted to be a professional football player. The idea makes our heart race and the adrenalin rush is euphoric. While our confidence laid dormant, we looked at this dream as unreachable. Our thoughts buried it deeper each day. "I'm only 145 pounds. They won't ever want me." "There's only so many people who ever make it big in this sport. Why would they choose me above the others?" "I didn't play college ball therefore I'm not good enough." We compound our misery until we are immersed in failure. The dream is broken before it even has a chance to be born. And us? We're left feeling empty, frustrated and overwhelmed.
Looking at the same dream in a new light....holding our validation and confidence in hand....we begin to see new opportunities. We stop sabotaging our desires. "So what if I am not as big as the other guys?! I can run twice as fast!" "I have as much chance as any other athlete to be selected to a team." "Who says college ball is a prerequisite? I've worked on my skills since high school by playing with the local guys. I have enough desire and determination to make up for not playing in a college." We've replaced the negativity with positive thoughts...again, building our confidence in our ability to achieve. We're left feeling hopeful, excited and confident. The world is our playground- grab some trucks and shovels!
Unfortunately, this new thought groove does not manifest itself overnight. It takes conscious effort and practice... seeing things as they are and then replacing every nagging negative thought with something fresh, new and positive. Eventually we don't even realize it's happening, but our minds begin to change and our ideas begin to take on a more open, optimistic viewpoint. Our dreams seem reachable. Our obstacles seem destructible. And with every successful achievement, we gain more confidence...we stop dogging and doubting ourselves. Here in this mind space, there's no limit to what we can accomplish! Not only do we believe we CAN overcome obstacles, we WANT to....our drive and determination have come alive.
Personally, I didn't know what I wanted to do with my life. I'd given up on success long before I had the chance to pursue any vocation. I did know what type of person I wanted to be. In retrospect, there was always someone present in my life who represented this person. Strong, powerful, intelligent, and creative women who had control of their lives. Each knew what they were capable of and never settled for less. Each also saw my capabilities and continually pushed me forward...until I pushed them away. But ya know, they never really left...they just gave me space....loved me enough to let me go...and yes, today I have much better than before.
Okay, where are we? We've developed our self-confidence, we feel validated from within, we've compassionately converted our negative thoughts to positives, and we've become aware of new drive and determination. Wow- how cool is that?!
Yes, it's time to take a moment just to breathe! Celebrate! We're feeling pretty good and life is looking a whole lot better! Sure there are still occasional fast balls coming in our direction, but they don't seem as scary anymore. We know how to duck! lol We've developed our coping skills...we're ready.
In this quiet moment of jubilation, take time to really feel the goodness. Not just a "Hurray I did it, what's next?" Let the feeling linger...feel it. Breathe. Feel it some more. This warm fuzziness is the quiet, comforting jubilation we've been missing while immersed in nothing but chaos. It's the goodness we'd forgotten how to feel while lost amongst our inner turmoil.
Okay, my friends, I could continue through about five more blog entries, but I will stop here. One final thought, when we can learn to remain mindfully in this moment, we are focused and giving 100 percent to whatever activity we are experiencing. There is no fear of the next thing or the future....there is no depression for past regrets and mistakes...but there sure is a moment of pure opportunity...we have a blank slate (tabula rasa) in which to create anything our hearts and souls desire... It is here where joy breathes and I hope you'll share its refreshing air.

On that note, good's wishing you peace, compassion, and yes, love, the greatest gift of all. Hugs :o)

Facing Challenges- Part Two

Hello again!
In part one, I wrote about challenges and shared a bit of my background to create a relateability factor. In this section, I want to discuss how we get back on the road to success. Of course, what I am sharing is based solely on my experiences and/or opinions and not to be used in place of medical or psychological advice. On that note, let's continue...

When we attempt to solve a difficult math problem, we do not add, subtract and multiply simultaneously. There are rules we must follow and an order of operations to solve the problem efficiently and correctly. Like solving geometric formulas, everything is a process.... therefore, we can never hope to fix ourselves by implementing tons of ideas at once. There must be a concentration focused on one change at a time. After all, we didn't break down in one day... we certainly cannot become whole in one day either.
Acceptance....that there is a problem...that we must begin again...that life is going to throw curve balls...that we can learn to be all right no matter a primary concept we must first allow to breathe from our insides. Kind of like an alcoholic walking into an AA meeting and sharing,"Hi, I'm Ted and I'm an alkie." Only in this case, it's "Hi, I'm me but I don't know who that is nor do I know what to do with the challenges I'm facing." After this admittance, we need to allow it to be okay- just the way it is- with no facades....allow ourselves to be human.
Once we hold the acceptance in our hearts, where do we go? It's one thing to recognize a challenge and quite another to place our feet on the road to overcoming and conquering a problem.
Somehow we must validate our existence. Give ourselves a reason, one we can easily believe ourselves, to validate our life. In simple terms, asking the questions, "Who am I?" and "What is my purpose?" In a world of billions of people, what makes me special? Why was I born? We must actually take the time to delve deep inside and answer these questions. Not off the cuff and flippant, but thoughtfully and completely. After all, we want our lives to be happier, don't we?
Obviously, we are not God. We don't know the exact reason why we are here, but with some time spent in honest reflection, we sure are capable of surmising what we feel is a plausible answer.

Perhaps after sitting in our comfy chairs for an hour and soul searching, we are still stumped. Perhaps the only answer is: "I am here just to be.... period." Or perhaps something profound hits us in our silence: "I am here because I was meant to carry a message of healing to others." Regardless of the meditative result, we have an answer of some sort and we must allow it to be okay also....allow it to add a degree of importance to our every breath...allow it to push us into the mindset of "I really do matter," "I count," "I am here and my existence is as important as anyone else's life." Maybe we even need to practice telling ourselves those statements until they become second nature. Maybe not. Everyone is different. But just what have we accomplished with these questions and answers?
We've validated our importance in this world. We've found the "truth of what is....just as it is." Suddenly, we realize we are not broken anymore... maybe a bit off track, but surely not broken beyond repair...nor is our life and the challenges before us. Our confidence, though up to this point hidden, now begins to awaken.

On that note, I'm ending part two before your heads knock into your monitor and you're out cold. ;o) In part three ( hopefully also the final part of this blog series- but I'm long winded so I can't guarantee that! lol) we will be taking our acceptance, validation, and confidence and begin to tackle new ground towards a better life....perhaps even find some joy along the way.

I wish each of you a night of reflection where you become one with what you see as the reason for your existence. Only when we look within, can we ever find direction.

Hugs, :o)

Facing Challenges- Part One

Hello my friends,
Today I want to talk about challenges. No, actually I don't want to talk so much about them as I want to discuss how we overcome them.
Sometimes life tosses an obstacle that hits us in the face with a sting like a snowball. Other times, it's more like a boulder runs us over and flattens us to the ground. Sometimes we see it coming, sometimes we create it even, but most times, it's a huge surprise.
For years I ran from anything I couldn't control, which, in retrospect, was most everything. Whether it was by using drugs, physically moving (geographical cure), or withdrawing into myself, I ran. Though I may have appeared to be strong, determined and capable of handling about anything, inside I was scared, quietly crumbling, and the owner of little to no coping skills.
Fear and cowardice led me nowhere...quickly. Wrong friends, abusive relationships, a less than admirable reputation....and the biggie- more obstacles to run from. Negative actions bred more negative results. Go figure!
The bottom fell out of my life several times. I lost almost everything I owned materially, but worse, I eventually lost my own identity. There was no "me." I didn't exist beyond being part of the chaos my actions, and life's surprises, created. Depressed, anxious, and in many ways, indifferent, I lost touch with goodness ...with myself...with the world...with life as a whole.
At these points, I felt I deserved whatever boulder I was being hit with at the time, and in some instances, I did. Lost my car- okay, I hadn't paid the bill. Lost my apartment- okay, my money was going to drugs, not rent. Lost my marriage- okay, he hated me anyway. Having been abused as a child, beaten by my husband (my high school sweetheart), and raped on three different occasions, I had no self-esteem--no self-worth. Those in my so called "inner circle" were incapable of providing any validation for their own existence, much less mine. So, when I realized I had lost "me"- so what?! In my own mind, I didn't deserve goodness in any form. Believing I had been born under the wrong star with the moon in retrograde, I kept running and found nowhere fast.
My point in sharing my past is simply to create some background to emphasize changes in thought, in action, and in me. A relateability factor, if you will. To say at one time I felt like slime under a whale's belly would be an understatement. So what changed?
Nothing. That is, no thing. Life continued to pitch its uncertainties and challenges my way, but ....I changed and how I interacted with the world around me changed dramatically. I stopped running...I had no choice. Not wanting to live and too afraid to die, I was a shadow of myself quickly losing the only glimmer of hope I'd been able to keep...the hope that one day I too could be "someone" ....someone who mattered... someone who could touch others and better our world...someone who was available for whatever goodness needed to be spread.
On that note, I'll end part one of "Facing Challenges."
In part two, I'll discuss these changes in thought and action.

Wishing everyone a wonderful today where hope and faith exist simultaneously and a moment is taken to give and receive goodness in its purest form.

Hugs :o)

Saturday, February 14, 2009

It was Fall...

One last burst of warmth before winter's cold tightens its icy grip upon us. It was one of those crisp autumn days when we feel restless. Unwilling to let go of fall's sunshine and almost afraid to look ahead toward winter's snowstorms, already peaking over the horizon. Watching the end of the colored leaves spiralling to the ground, I decided to take a walk through the local park.
Children were sneaking in one last afternoon of swinging, sliding and other outdoor activities. Their giggles floated on the air and tickled my ears as I passed by the playground toward the fenced off pond. A spot I had discovered earlier in the year when spring fever had me roaming the neighborhood.
It was quiet by the water. Only the sound of a slight breeze through the almost bare trees. Even the water was still as I stood reflecting and searching inward for a peice of calmness.
Since leaving behind my world of chaos and anxiety, I've spent many days sorting through ideas, thoughts, and yes, even memories. Boxing, labelling and storing away what was worth keeping. Letting go of more than I saved.
Most definitely this has been a transition year. A year of change. In fact, there have been times where I've stripped away so much, I don't even recognize myself anymore. Or at least, the person I've always known myself to be.
No, today was not a "mind in crisis" day, it was more of a "coming together of body, soul and mind" kind of afternoon. Redefining who I am. The truth of "what is" and full acceptance of that reality.
So many things I've longed searched for have been directly in front of my eyes and though I would like to use the excuse that I was blind to them, the truth is I was afraid of what their reality would entail.
Today I met fearlessness. I had touched it before, briefly. That awesome feeling of oneness with all things in my life where the sky could fold into itself and it wouldn't matter. I would be okay. Better than okay, joyous. The epitome of happy- from hair folicle to toe nail. Inside and out. Then slowly, my visits with this feeling became more frequent until today when it all just gelled.
It wasn't an earth shattering jubilation, but more of a quiet satisfaction warming from the pit of my stomach outward until my whole being became alive and radiant. As I meandered through the park, I could almost feel my thoughts, plans and dreams line up with a plan greater than my own.
So many questions no longer needed answers. I had found purpose for every obstacle I had ever overcome. Better still, I had found reason to celebrate every day of the rest of my life. Awestruck by the enormity of the universe, I couldn't help but wonder why I ever questioned life on life's terms, even for a second.
What an awesome feeling to know, and fully believe, we always end up where we are meant to be. We don't need to stress that fact. It just happens. When we stop fighting and find acceptance for this truth, wow, how much of a difference it makes. Our minds are no longer cluttered with mental garbage. We gain clarity.
How wonderful to be able to stand by a pond, surrounded by the beauty and wonder of nature, and know, no matter what, the sun will shine another day, the snow will fall, the spring will come and dandelions will again paint the country fields. Yes, all will be okay- including us- without our control.
Jumping back into my car, fully aware of all that's beautiful in my world, my insides remained warm and quietly grateful. Before turning the ignition key, I paused to breathe. One long slow breath. The exhale seemed to last an eternity, but once complete, not an ounce of stress remained.
My life may not be unfolding as I once imagined it would, but it sure is wondrous just the same. In fact, far more happier than I've ever had the capacity to dream.

Sunday, February 1, 2009


When darkness encapsulates the silence, I can hear you breathing. A steady, slow breath in...breath out...our spirits unite as one and rest comes easily. If the world were to fold unto itself, the event would go unnoticed. Peace, so powerful, has been captured within our quiet.

When the sun dances across your face and accentuates the sparkles in your eyes, as mortal as I am, I can see forever. Standing strong, side by side, and me, still euphoric feeling the warmth of your smile.

When uneasiness creeps upon my shoulders and I feel an inner crumbling, the warm softness of your hand upon mine instantly instills a quiet confidence. In these moments I feel I can move the universe with a slight tap of my finger tips.

While immersed in our childish silliness, I marvel at the intensity of our laughter. Gleeful, unashamed and twisting on the air it travels while I wonder how I deserve to be so blessed. Without question, gratitude consumes me.

While thinking of all you mean to me, words become lodged within my being. New to my existence, this connectedness at times allows me only a long loving silence. It's within these insecure instances when I hope you can read the raw emotion straight from my eyes.

Looking back at our history, I wonder how the mystery took so long to reveal its reality. Never have I loved this deeply and completely. You're the source of my dreams and my trust of the future. All who is cherished in my world, hence why I know, without a dash of doubt, I'll love you.....Always.