“Where do I belong,” was a question that haunted my soul for as long as I can remember. While some children worried about where to put their hands when under the scrutiny of a disproving adult, I had no idea where to put me, ever. Deep, soul-wrenching questions haunted my nights, robbing me of sleep. My days were consumed with trying to undo the one thing I knew with every fibre of my being. “I did not fit in.” I did not need to wait for other children to taunt me or run away from me on the playground, their cruel words and actions already had a place carved out in my being where they were meant to live. I did not fight against them, I welcomed them home. Continue reading →
Life has given me everything. Every experience has taught me, whether positive or negative, every lesson has been perfectly delivered to burn its message deep into my heart. Sometimes I have fought the lesson and had to repeat the learning but all that I am today, I am because I have lived it.
If I am kind it is because I have chosen to be kind, over and over again. I cannot have lived a life of cruelty and revenge and be kind today. What I choose this very moment creates in me who I am. It changes and impacts the person I was before the action and it influences the person who will act in the next moment. Because I am imperfect and make mistakes, the only way to move forward in an effective way is to hold on to the lesson from the mistake and carry it forward to help me with the next lesson.
Every time I chose to deny who I was and try to adopt what others thought I should be, I gave away something so precious . . . Some of it I have never been able to get back. Our actions define us. Every single one of them, no matter how small.
I was lucky enough to have been born as a weirdo. I was weird because my brain was not wired to see things, to process them, in the same way, that everyone else did. I was not wanted as a child. I was usually alone, and seldom had friends who understood me. I learned that I could do it. I could make it without their help. I could figure things out on my own. I live my life unapologetically as who I am. I do things my way. I give myself permission to be me.
I am not special, or perfect, or some famous millionaire. But I am an awesome me. I took what I was given and I learned to love and nurture it and not just wish it away. Continue reading →
One of the blessings of getting older is that life slows down a lot, and the need for you to tend to every small detail for all the people you are responsible for and too, pretty much ends. Your kids are grown up and don’t need/want your advice, you no longer have a company hounding you for that deadline, and the general public thinks you just need a pat on the hand and an “aww isn’t she cute” once in awhile.
You get a lot of time to sit and look. You think.
Were we this obsessed with having everything? Probably. But our wants were not so much about fame and things way beyond our life probabilities, they were more about things that allowed us to be part of the average and edging to better. We surprised ourselves by surpassing that at times, but most of us breathed evenly when we were holding our own. In the end, we can say we did OK. We know that other did much better and others did not even come close. We did OK.
Now it seems to be about being the winner, the best, the one that gets to rub everyone else’s face in it. If a friend has a $30,000.00, wedding, yours has to be $45,000.00 and instead of establishing status quo with your peers, it is a process of leap frogging. Meaning, you have made your life an endless treadmill. There will never be a point where you just sit back and enjoy it. Continue reading →
“It is not the man who has to little who is poor, but the one who hankers after more.” Seneca, Letters from a Stoic
I am so appreciative for continual growth and expanding understanding. As I have aged I have come to realize how incredibly unimportant things are. I no longer care about acquiring more. I find that spiritually, I just want to reduce and simplify and focus on what is important . . . other people, the world around me, my connection to source.
The other day I was talking to my husband about winning a lottery and he shared that he would never want to win it. His reasoning was that we don’t need it, what would we do with it? It is true, we no longer have a list of things we want to buy. We focus on what we need, and that lessens and lessens. I said that I would still love to win it, because it would be thrilling to think of all the ways I could use it to bless the lives of others. I would give it all away, to people and to programs that would bless the lives of others. We both tried to think of things that we could buy and in the end, there really was nothing we needed, and neither of us have wants that involve material things.
I cannot tell you how incredibly freeing this feeling is and how much more meaningful life seems to me, once I was released from those chains of selfishness. It seems that once I was off that vicious endless cycle, I was able to truly appreciate what I do have. When I did that, I could see that I had more than enough. I let go of listening to advertisements telling me I needed to get a newer couch, a bigger house, a fancier car. Every day that I wake up I take time to look around me, to acknowledge how blessed my life is, to know I have more than enough, and to appreciate and care for what I do have. I am no longer me focused. I am not one giant appetite of need that defines what my life is about. Continue reading →
My husband shared this with me and I could not stop thinking about it.
It is interesting at face value but on a deeper level it is everything.
What are we teaching our children? Do we consider how much we shape their world for them by the experiences they have and the things they learn? My mind goes to so many instances where children are used to further the adults needs and sick wants.
Can we recognize in ourselves that we get stuck in ways of seeing things, ways of dealing with life, ways of problem solving … and we pass it on to our children. It is not that how we do things is right or wrong but rather that it is limited. It is just one way and defending that way as “right” and defending it to the point we “hate” other people who do not share our experiences and therefore thoughts is shallow and debilitating.
I have always NEEDED to understand HOW people think. I remember being a kid and asking a thousand questions because I could not let something go until I could understand why someone had a different opinion or idea than I did. Once I could see that path, I was ok with it. I was ok with that person being different than me. As an adult, when I cannot understand an action, I start on a journey to find a connection point. If I can understand how a person thinks then I can figure out why they ended up at the place they are in and I have a bridge from me to them. It does not mean I agree with them but I guess I have this fundamental understanding we are all human and we are all capable of both good and bad given the right circumstances. I can understand, for example, that a child who is incredibly abused as a child, might grow up to abuse others. I do not condone their actions but there is something in me that can say I get why that could happen for some people.
These types of understandings should free us all to realize we are so limited and contained with our own lives and experiences and that there is never an end to learning. Have we “chosen” to be limited? Is our comfort, our affluence, our pursuit of physical pleasure, shut us down and numbed us to the whole process of life? Were we meant to continue to grow and expand and experience instead of settling, switching off, and dying?
I have done things to challenge myself through out my life without really thinking about it. I move my watch from my preferred arm to my other arm. I write with my other hand. I sleep on the side less preferred. I move things around in my environment. I am now excited to think about expanding that. To perhaps immersing myself in different practices that change my thoughts. How else can this work.
Let me know if you try anything and what your experiences are.
Every human being wants to be loved and to feel that they belong. In order for there to be a place for a person to fit, they have to contribute in some way to the relationship, the group, or the project. When we feel needed, we feel invested. Our being invested means that we are part of the whole who is tending the whole, instead of us all being isolated and only self focused. Science is just now waking up to the fact that people need to have connections with one another. It is vital for our emotional, spiritual, and physical health. Continue reading →
This speaks to me today. There is so much going on in the world and people are either preparing for war, or cowering in their homes, afraid of every shadow that moves. There is talk of storing enough food, enough guns .. of being prepared to die, of having no choice but to accept you will die.
Within individual lives are storms of pain regarding relationships, addictions, financial worries, health . .. people struggle and feel isolated with the problems that greet them each morning with relentless regularity. Continue reading →
How sad that as we age we are expected to take life seriously. I have never understood why people assume because you are laughing and having a good time, or even dancing on your desk , that you are not being responsible.
I tried the “sit down and act like a grown up” and it was uncomfortable, restrictive , and boring.
It is hard to be tender hearted. Despite the best efforts of my grandparents who raised me, my teachers, all the cruelty of the world and the mean heartedness of some people, I have survived. I stopped fighting it as a young woman when I finally realized that despite the pain, it was also my greatest gift, affording me sight and understanding that not everyone else had.
But compassion is not just a gift, it is a necessity for our lives, and especially for the future of our children. Continue reading →
Letting go can seem like the end of the world. What will happen to us if we let go of something or someone that has been such a big part of our lives, especially if the letting go is not what we want to do? Our penchant, especially as women, is to love. We all paint pictures in our heads, tell ourselves stories about who we are, what we are supposed to do with our lives. We can race ahead of our decisions and imagine the negative outcome of our actions. We hear our families disapproving voices, we relive all the Sunday School Lessons, we feel the disgust of strangers who don’t even know us … judging. Are we bad people when we finally choose ourselves instead of bleeding ourselves dry for people and situations that are not healthy and may never be? Continue reading →