My Angel card yesterday was Entrepreneur. What is interesting about receiving this card yesterday is that the night prior I had dinner with one of my girlfriends and she had noticed that I have been posting items talking about the downside and awfulness of being an entrepreneur. To read some really accurate descriptions of the neurosis of entrepreneurship check out James Altucher on Facebook. He is not for the faint of heart, but neither is running a business.
Anyhow, she noted that I had been posting negative ideas of what being an entrepreneur. Then she reminded me that most of what I am feeling is because I have been living someone else's dream. Everything feels forced and hard because this isn't my baby. She suggested that I keep an open mind regarding how easy and worth it the effort would feel if I was managing my own dream.
Then I wake up and my Angels remind me again that "You have the ideas, the drive, and the self discipline required for entrepreneurial work. Ease out of your present job by moonlighting with your desired business idea. Your ideas for business are sound. Fully commit to succeeding in your new business."
The other interesting item is that she suggested I start a book club. Instead of sitting around until I can save the money needed to purchase the licensing for what I want to teach and guide, why not just start doing something that gets me brainstorming with other like minded people. I feel like this is the "Ease out of your present job by moonlighting with your desired business idea."
I am still kicking this around in my head...
Then today my Angels send me Be Honest With Yourself.
"You received this card as a gentle confrontation because the Angels know you've been hiding from your true feelings. You probably have been afraid that if you admit how you honestly felt you'd be overwhelmed with feelings & faced with making some necessary changes you feel unprepared for. The situation will improve if you face it squarely. Avoid getting caught up in the illusion that 'this is the way it is'."
I have been caught up in the illusion that "this is the way it is" and that nothing is going to change, so just keep soldiering on. So much so that my sleeping mind is giving me very vivid dreams in hopes that I will wake up from the illusion and see things as they really are.
I am taking time to listen and to make small changes towards my goals. Change is hard.
I would write every day emptying out as much of my heart and soul as possible so that my children would know me and be able to find me when they needed words only I could say to them.
I would write every thought and feeling and desire so that my children would understand the woman who loved them with all that she was.
Let me just start with I am generally a mess emotionally. If alternatively plugging my nose holes and breathing can lower my stress levels, I will give it a try! Bring on the calm!
I am very emotional. I am anxious, stressed, nervous, worried, wired, busy, highly agitated, a work-aholic, insomniac...
You can see it on my face (I flush easy), you can read it in my body language (tense, teeth grinding) and you can read it in my writing.
I know that I cannot win at poker. My body shows the wear and tear I put it through. Having said that, it is not until I am unable to sleep, am scratching my head, elbows, legs and back and find blood in my poop that I stop and notice how much my body is screaming at me to pay attention.
The biggest thing that has happened to shine the spotlight on my stress level was getting sick last summer. Blood in your poop kinda scares the shit out of you and stops you in your track. Learning that the reason you are double up in pain is because you have ulcers lining most of your colon is frightening when you realize how long your colon is. Another auto-immune disease added to my life. I have allergies, ezcema and now ulcerative colitis. The ezcema and colitis flare up when I get stressed and when I stay stressed.
My days of drinking and drugging and smoking have turned into juicing, forced water consumption and taking tons of medication to deal with consequences of the bad food & lifestyle choices of my teens, twenties and thirties.
My days of being a bad ass have caught up with me. I love that Dr. Gottfried uses that analogy.
All of the stress & striving & hard living are either going to take my health away and shorten my life or I can make some radical changes and ease my old age as best I can.
It is an easy choice for me to make, but not so easy to implement.
Some weeks are better than others. Some weeks I am better at hiding it than others. In the past couple of years, my stress has been very high and I truly have lived on a nasty scary roller coaster.
Getting sick last summer brought to my attention, again, that I have to learn to manage and lower my stress. Unlike your average person who believes they thrive on stress, I know it is making me sick and is damaging my internal organs. The more I learn, the more I understand that my colon is only the first of organs that are going to start showing the damage of the prolonged stress I have carried for two decades.
For the past year I have read everything I can get my hands on and watched countless hours of videos to learn just how the hell do you manage your stress. This has been a good year for me as I have found real "things" I can easily do to stop my physical reaction to stress. To limit the time I allow my body to stay in a stressed state of being.
So what does stress and cortisol have to do with each other? Why do I need to lower my cortisol level?
"Cortisol is a steroid hormone which regulates a wide range of processes throughout the body including metabolism and the immune response. It also has a very important role in helping the body respond to stress."~Society for Endocrinology
"The symptoms of too much cortisol include:
High cortisol levels over a prolonged time can also cause lack of sex drive and, in women, periods can become irregular, less frequent or stop altogether (amenorrhoea)."~Society for Endocrinology http://www.yourhormones.info/hormones/cortisol.aspx
Here is what I took from this video with Dr. Sara Gottfried on ways to lower my cortisol:
1. Pranayama breathing. For me, the first and easiest thing I now have in my tool box is paying attention to and changing my breath. This is a super easy one, but unlike the 4 count breath & hold I have used in the past, this one is very visible in public. Not that I mind looking crazy and for a quick fix, looking crazy is the least of my worries.
You can add this mantra Inhale: I am energized Exhale: I am focused while practicing pranayama.~ http://www.yogajournal.com/meditation/kathryn-budigs-rise-shine-meditation/
2. Cocktail Time: I heard the message again that my wine is waking me up at night. Choosing to ignore that, but I may go back to no wine on weekdays. The cocktail that Dr. Gottfried suggest is a Holy Basil, Phosphatidylserine and Omega 3's. I have a link at the bottom of this page with her doge recommendations. (Always talk to your doctor before trying any supplements or medications) Each of the items in the cocktail are to lower your cortisol levels.
3. Eat a pound of veggies every day. She wants you to eat veggies with breakfast, lunch & dinner to lower your cortisol. Holy shit that is a lot of veggies. Eating that many veggies will produce a Holy Shit.
4. Get/give 8 hugs a day. Easy to achieve! You have to hug men longer for them to get the same cortisol lowering response from a hug.
5. Sleep 8 1/2 hours a night. She talks about the full adrenal repair process and how it happens we when sleep and that most of us don't sleep long enough for our body to get through the entire process. She also states that the sleep you get before midnight counts double in effect for the sleep you get after midnight.
She suggest that if you are unable to sleep, to cut out caffeine all together.
6. Dark Chocolate lowers cortisol if it is 80 % cocoa.
7. Orgasms!!! She recommends these often as they also lower cortisol.
8. Do Yoga and enjoy Music, both lower cortisol.
My take away on reducing my stress and lowering my cortisol levels is to turn on the relaxing music, eat my veggies with my cocktail, follow it with eating dark chocolate while hugging, followed by orgasms and then 8.5 hours of sleep. Can I get a hell yea!!
Why didn't anyone tell me about this healthy way of life in my twenties? Oh well, doesn't matter. I know it now, and have a couple more decades left to dedicate to this healthy way of life!
After not sleeping for the past few days, I slept.
I slept because my daughter slept. She and I both have a hard time with sleep. We are taking magnesium supplements & no caffeine, herbal tea with mint and chamomile, essential oil diffuser wafting lavender oil throughout, low lights and relaxing music. It isn't enough some nights, but last night it was.
One night of sleeping feels good, but I would love to lay my head down now and take a small nap right now and it is not even 9 am yet.
So very much going on in my life that I hope to have completed in the coming days. Too much has been in the works or on hold and in such, my life has felt like slow and lethargic. I am ready to get back in gear on my projects.
I haven't written anything of substance in weeks. So much time in my head, beating stuff around, but no desire to share any of it. No desire to really do anything. I have just wanted to sit, curled up under blankets and watch tv, like hours and hours of documentaries.
Time to get this work crap wrapped up so I can focus on writing again.
Fingers crossed that this chapter gets wrapped up in beautiful paper and shiny ribbons!
Happy Rump Day!!
My Angel Card this morning was Fresh Air.
I had no idea how desperately I needed just a few minutes in the sun.
I love Colorado! Sunshine and 70 degrees today.
I found a dry patch of sidewalk and sat down for 10 minutes.
I have been inside too many days. My head felt stuffy and heavy. Before i stood up, I looked up at the sky.
Have you ever seen a sky so blue?
Tonight a powerful movie will be on PBS.
Head to http://apathappears.org/ Take 3 minutes and head over to watch the trailer to find out why you must watch this documentary.
Find out how you can make a difference. Join them on Facebook to share the message on your wall.
Walking meditation time for me today was 3 miles on the treadmill listening to an interview of Danielle LaPorte by...
I haven't felt like running this week, just walking and listening to interviews.
Walking has been the perfect pace for me to zone out & escape. Listening to the interviews has nourished my brain to stop the future tripping and take in new information. I forget how wonderful reading & watching documentaries & interviews is to stopping the running stream of negative thoughts & self talk in my head.
Maybe that is how I stayed sane when I was home alone with my children 5 nights a week? I would devour several books each week after they went to sleep.
When I focus or listen, really listen the noise inside my head stops.
I am very pleased that I walked 10.5 miles this week. I am trying to ramp up miles slowly so I give my poor knees a fighting chance. I want to be able to maintain 15 to 20 miles a week for the rest of my days. Those miles provided me with 3.5 hours of inner peace last week. I haven't dedicated this amount of time to myself in several years and my body & soul has suffered greatly from the lack.
I keep sticky notes next to the treadmill so if I hear something I want to remember I can write it down. This past week, I listened to several interviews with Danielle LaPorte as she first published her book, The Desire Map. I am so loving this concept of changing from goals to core feelings.
I am especially loving the simplicity of choosing small things daily that allow me to "feel" the way I want to. I just started yesterday, writing down some feelings. I will be one of those people who takes a few weeks to keep writing down feelings and words that pop into my head before I choose my core list of desires. I love the process of choosing words and want to find the perfect ones to describe me!
I also managed to finally get some polish on my toes!
Today is unfolding slowly. I am sitting in my recliner soaking up the sun coming through my windows. Groceries need to be bought in preparation of the kids coming home tomorrow!
Other than that I plan to relax & recharge as much as I can to prepare for the week ahead.
Time to go get in the first of this weeks miles!
Don't have time to read a book on how to get your life back on track? Fine, I totally get it. Click on this link or head over to you tube and watch this video, 48 minutes. Don't have 48 minutes? Fine, the beauty of you tube is you can watch in whatever chunks of time you have. Put it on while you shower and eat breakfast. Put it back on while you drive to work. Put it on while you drive home or while you prepare dinner.
I want to feel good now. She tells you how to start making that happen, today!
The 2015 Mediation Summit began yesterday. I am always a day or two behind. Day one has Davidji!! 16 seconds is all he asks of you to teach you how to meditate. 4 seconds breathe in. Hold at the top for 4 seconds. Release 4 seconds. Hold at the bottom 4 seconds. When you do this you have meditated for 16 seconds. You stayed present in this moment.
Any time you feel yourself being pulled or stretched or pushed, take 16 seconds. No one is too busy not to give themselves 16 seconds.
Davidji says to do this every day. Then each week add another minute of meditation.
This is a free online seminar that you get a link to listen to the days meditation and interviews. If you haven't already, head over to The Mediation Summit 2015 website and sign up for free.
This free summit could introduce you to a new type of meditation that might be just what you are looking for or to a new mediation teacher. You really do have to search to find the style and person's voice that you can gel with.
I love listening to Davidji on Hay House Radio!
Most days, hanging with my family, writing and eating yummy food tops the highlights of my day. Then there are cool days like today where I make a new online friends.
Today's new online friend is Nick Ortner.
I learned about Nick and his sister Jessica last year about this exact time.
The kids were out of school and I was searching for ways to ease my stress. I finally felt physically okay after treating my ulcerative colitis that had taken me to my knees in September of 2013. Two months of severe illness and two months of strong medicines had taken their toll on me body, mind and soul.
Having had my follow up doctor's appointment, I was sent home with vague information on dealing with this chronic illness. This is one of those fabulous auto-immune diseases that can be caused by how and what you eat and stress.
I had just finished a 21 Day Mediation program with Deepak & Oprah and was looking for something else to help me manage my stress.
I am not actually certain how I found EFT or Tapping, but I did. I watched the introduction on what it is and how to do it and thought, this is kooky as hell. I listened to the scientific explanation of how it works and again thought, kooky as hell.
Then I did a few rounds and felt relaxed. Like someone took the edge off my anxiety.
Then I scoured Nick's website for more guided tapping.
I believe that within a week or so of this fateful day, The Tapping World Summit 2014 was starting. I signed up for it because it was free. 10 days of interview and guided tapping with a really recognizable group of authors, doctors, psychologist etc... All free and each day's interviews were available for 24 hours so I could listen to them on my own time.
The Tapping World Summit introduced me authors that would change my life in the coming weeks. Iyanla Vanzant, Dr. Wayne Dyer, Louise Hay, Cheryl Richardson to name a few. After the summit ended, I logged on and bought access to it so I could keep listening to the interviews as it was just too much to digest at once. Each day Jessica would lead a guided tapping mediation. I have those on my Ipod to listen to when I drive and need to get my stress down.
This crazy kooky as hell tapping thing has been one of the tools to help me get my stress under control.
I am a driving tapper. If you should pull up next to me a red light and see me tapping my eyebrow, then under my eye, then under my nose, then on my chin, well I am tapping so don't bother me, just waive and smile.
I started talking to my friends about this crazy tapping thing because I just couldn't keep it to myself. While I haven't written any of my own scripts as suggested, I have found the people who resonate with my general stress and anxiety issues and I save their guided tappings on You-tube.
Then Jessica Ortner got a show on Hay House Radio. Every Tuesday at 2 p.m. Mountain time, I am driving up to go get my kids from school. I have an hour to listen and tap, tap and listen.
From Nick's web site The Tapping Solution on the science behind how this works--
"studies at Harvard Medical School have revealed that by stimulating the body’s meridian points – the same spots on your body that are manipulated by acupuncturists – you can significantly reduce activity in a part of your brain called the amygdala. Think of your amygdala as a personal alarm system. When you experience trauma or fear, the amygdala is triggered and your body is flooded with cortisol, commonly known as the “stress hormone.”
This intricate chain reaction – your stress response – significantly influences and sometimes even causes whatever it is that troubles you, whether that’s an illness, injury, or even an external problem such as your finances or a relationship.
These studies show that by stimulating these parts of your body – as we do in EFT Tapping – you can drastically reduce or eliminate the distress that accompanies or gives rise to these problems you face. By so doing, you can often eliminate the problems themselves!"
The 2015 Tapping World Summit starts on Feb. 2, 2015. Head on over to that website and register for free to listen to the interviews and tapping mediation.
It was really cool today to log onto Facebook and see that Nick Ortner had accepted my Facebook Friendship request! I wrote the piece What A Sweet Surprise several months ago putting my wish out to the Universe that one day I will be a Hay House author and will be presenting up on stage along side Nick and Jessica.
What a Sweet Surprise, Melissa Rasmussen Strong Starting Now
Use these links to learn more about EFT or Tapping:
The Tapping Solution, Nick Ortner
Jessica Ortner, EFT Weight Loss
2015 Tapping World Summit
I took off work today. I needed a down day to recharge. I walked on the treadmill for 4 miles today.
I watched the short 22 minute interview with Marie Forleo above and then kept walking and listened to the full hour launch of The Desire Map book shown below. I would have stayed on all day if this workshop had lasted longer. I just love the idea behind figuring out how to live my desires, today. Not tomorrow. Not 5 years from now, but today. What a brilliant question "What can I do today to live me desire to feel _____?"
The concept of figuring out your core desires still seems hard. I will be getting the book so I can get more detail on how to get this all out of my head and into the few really important desires.
I love that once I figure out what my desires are that I can stop myself mid freak out and ground myself in what my desires are and try and figure out what I can do to make me have that feeling. I love that everything doesn't have to be huge, that it can be small things such as what I wear or what I eat or who I spend my time with.
I need easy and simple. I need 2015 to be the year of ease and joy.
This was my morning trying to arrange to go to Qdoba for queso and chips for lunch.
It is too bad I didn't video tape myself while trying to speak slowly into my phone so it would recognize what I was trying to say. I was laughing so hard that I am surprised that it translated anything.
Case so, cool way so and K so, I don't care how it is spelled, I want cheesey goodness for lunch!
I have woken up to several inches of snow and a two hour delay for my kids!!
Colorado is so beautiful in the snow!
Since I was already in the shower when the school delay was posted, I am sitting here in the dark enjoying watching the snow fall & drinking my coffee.
I am grateful for my sweet coffee, the fabulous heater that has made my house warm to coax my kids from their beds later in the morning, and the quiet moments I was given this morning to sit & breathe & reflect on my blessings!
PS. I am grateful my own personal weather forecaster who has already predicted a school closure!!
After years watching my friends start businesses, I have finally found what I have been looking for.
It wasn't cookware, or essential oils, or baskets although I have enjoyed supporting them and purchasing and filling my house with some really cool stuff.
My business is love & passion & joy & speaking our truths!
This is one of those everything in a box program that comes with human support and tons of videos.
Open the box, watch it explode all over your house and go!
I have started a jar to save up for the licensing and initial product. I need about $3000 so I am starting now to put aside any money I can and I will try to attend one of the programs to see how someone else runs their program.
Just one of those things that has been in my head for about a month now that I need to commit to so that on the difficult days when I feel lost and beaten, I can remind myself I am working towards my goals.
This is just one of the ways I will create a life where I can support myself and my children!
I feel like each day I am stepping into the reality of what I want to be when I grow up. It feels so freakin awesome! 43 years old and I am figuring it all out and it is all coming together!
I get to have the life of my dreams for several decades to come!
This is what I look at every morning.
Every day I let my mind wander about when my next adventure will be and where life will take me.
Usually my head is flipped over and the hair dryer is providing the dull roar that allows me to zone out!
It is mini moments of meditation!
Read Terri Cole's post on What Happens When Words Are Left Unsaid
It is a fabulous and especially timely article as I have recently lost my father. While I feel I said what I needed to be said to him, there was so much I needed to hear him say, and will never get the chance to now.
I don't want to live my life, my "home" where I don't feel I can say what I need to, want to or where I can't be loved and accepted exactly as I am, where I am.
I would say that I choose to swallow my words and thoughts and feelings too damn often. It is just easier. It keeps my world comfy and stable (said in the most sarcastic voice ever). It feels safe, but it is literally making me sick.
Each day I take small steps in speaking my truth, then I stand there in fear and wait and see what happens. The reactions have been very good. I am learning to like the silence when I cause from those around me when I just speak. I like letting my "words fall out." This is the song I hear when I am brave and speak my truth.
If you would like to read my piece on leaving my words unsaid, read Paying Rent In Hell.
It is the coolest thing to get to connect with the people who are putting out really good information for those of us working through and on issues. Terri Cole is one of those people who has great information on her web site that you can go to for learning the how to and for getting the pat on the back for the progress and steps you have taken.
Go visit Terri Cole's Website!! Tell her Melissa sent you!
In the movie Wild, they show the character Cheryl's rubbed burned skin from the weight of her back pack.
First early on in her journey, like just mere days into her hiking. The skin rubbed by the straps of her too damn heavy pack pulling on her shoulders and chest and the rubbing on her lower back and hips. Until you see the bloody sores, you assume that while you know she is tired, hungry and dirty that she is doing fine physically. If you have ever hiked with an ill fitted backpack you flinch when you see the sores. She didn't walk with rubbing sores for a couple of hours, she did this every day for weeks and weeks.
I cannot image wearing that pack for weeks with the weight rubbing my skin until it bled. I cannot image the pain and irritation felt every foot step, all day. In the movie she says that in that first month, she was averaging 5 to 7 miles a day. That is a lot of foot steps.
I climbed Pikes Peak Mountain in the summer of 2011 for the first time. The hike is 24+ miles round trip with an elevation gain of 7,800 ft. and 14,115 ft at the summit. This was my 40th birthday present to myself. I would say this was my first mini-quest.
Prior to this trip, I hiked regularly during the year, but only short hour and a half to two hour hikes, and while there were hills, they were just hills. I had never done anything this long and difficult, but I wanted to really mark this milestone birthday.
The first day of my hike with full backpack was only 6.5 miles up to camp, then I dropped my big backpack and hiked the other 6 miles to the Summit and 6 miles back down to camp that day was with only a day pack which was mostly full of the water I would need. After 6.5 miles zigzagging up the side of a mountain in an improperly fitted full back pack my shoulders were hurting. I couldn't get the waist part of the harness tight enough to bear the weight of my pack. I had borrowed the pack from a slim young man, but regardless of the smallness of the pack it was fit for a man. I was so happy to drop my pack off at the campsite.
When I watched the character Cheryl pack up her backpack I was thinking the whole time, holy shit that is a ton of stuff she has crammed in there. For my arduous 14'er hike, I didn't even have to pack a tent or cooking utensils as I had booked a lean-to for sleeping in and bought dinner and breakfast from the camp. My backpack weighed a small fraction of her's, but because I couldn't wear it properly all of the weight was on my shoulders the entire time. I moved the straps out to the far reaches of my shoulders and would walk for a while, then I would move them in close to my neck and walk for a while. Over and over I would move the straps hoping for some relief. My lower back was sore from the weight of my pack pulling and me compensating by leaning forward.
My Trip Slideshow Pikes Peak August 2011
The second time they show her rubbed and worn skin in the movie is a point where she meets a man and she stands before him and he bears witnesses to the big bloody road rash that is her skin.
It makes me think how different life would be if everyone's road rash was visible.
If you could see how much and how severely I beat myself up mentally & emotionally for failures and fears, would you choose to see my whipped and torn body?
Can you imagine a world where you couldn't hide how you felt about yourself or what you current or previous mental state was?
If I could see your bloody ravaged body, would I show more kindness to you? Would our conversations be different? If I could see how you hurt yourself, would I even choose to speak to you? Or would I look and think, "no way, I have done the whole cutter thing and I can't handle being with someone like that again."
We meet people and begin friendships and relationships having absolutely no clue what is really going on inside the other person's head. We have people accept us into their lives without a clue that we are emotionally and verbally abusive in our self talk. That most of our scars are invisible, gives us a chance to present ourselves differently then if our bodies truly showed our hate and anger and fear.
I try to image dating in a world where our sins, our failures, our self loathing was visible across our bodies. You would walk up to the other person, strip off all of your clothing and slowly turn around for the other person to inspect all of your self inflicted sores & cuts & scars.
It is such a luxury that our self hate is hidden. There is great solace in being able to hide who we are, in having to allow people to be with us over time and get to know us before we reveal our inner workings.
But there is beauty and redemption in finding those few people who can stand in front of naked, revealing years and decades of self hate and have them embrace you, embrace the whole you.
It is a huge risk, but when you find those few people, put down your backpack and surrender to the gentle healing.
My Angel Card for today was Acceptance.
The next time you find you are tempted to judge others harshly, pray for their health & happiness instead.
Don't try to control or change others.
Let go of the tendency to force things to happen and you'll receive your desired outcome more peacefully.
Miracle Message #11 from the book Miracles Now, "Worry is a prayer for chaos." I do not need to pray for more chaos in my life.
I need to experience moments of love & peace everyday so that my prayers are for more love & peace! I need to bring more joy into my world, not chaos.
I am really going to try to not write 30 posts about the movie Wild, but honestly, I can't promise that.. I loved this movie. I have not felt so personally moved by a movie since Eat, Pray, Love. That movie spurred my waking up to notice how far down the important list I had put myself.
5 years ago I started working on making myself happy & figuring out what I wanted to do with my life.
I have heard Elizabeth Gilbert, author of Eat, Pray, Love speak several times now about the holy quest. She talks about how every culture, from the dawn of man has had a holy quest story.
What she only briefly touches on is that there aren't many holy quest stories for women. You don't often hear about the women who set off on a holy quest. More often we hear about women making do, getting through and putting themselves last on the list. Women usually play the role of needing to be rescued or are part of the prize in the holy quest.
I am a woman who hears the beat of the drum to start my holy quest. I heard it the first time 5 years ago. I have traveled a small bit on my own prior to having children. It is so wonderful and feels so selfish. Just me making all of the decisions, from where to eat, to where to spend the day and how long you stay in one place.
Motherhood currently pushes out my long solo quest off into the future. However, I want to be able to share with my kids that I am going to answer this call someday soon. There was too much sex and drugs in the movie for me to share it with my kids now, but I will own a copy as soon as it comes out so I can watch it again and one day share this woman's story with them. I want them to know there is a beat they may hear that leads them on a horrible and fabulous journey of self discovery.
Having to wait a bit until they are all grown up gives me time to make the money needed to keep my life moving & my bills being paid while I explore. I need to start a savings jar so that I feel it is really going to happen. I don't know where my epic holy quest will take me, so it is hard to start planning, yet...
Watching the movie Wild made the drum beat match my heart beat. I can hear it now as surely as I can feel it.
There is no more denying it. I will take a great solo quest. I might even need to plan some smaller mini-quests or "bite size" as Elizabeth said in an interview with Oprah to get me through until I can really jump into a long term plan.
I keep getting the Angel card "Day Dream." This card is supposed to spur me to spend time thinking about what I want. The thought is the clearer you can get, the easier it is to create or manifest the life you desire.
When I daydream, what I see is me, just me.
I don't think I am alone. I can't imagine being alone. I don't know what it feels like to be alone. I know that I pray that I will always have love, friendship and my kids in my life. But when I daydream, what I keep seeing is me. Me. Just me.
It is almost unnerving to let that settle into my head.
Could I be really be alone? Or is what I am seeing just my personal quest?
I can't image not seeing my boyfriend, kids or my girlfriends but in my day dream they aren't present.
I broached this subject yesterday with my boyfriend, "so what would you think if I told you I wanted to go on a solo long term quest?" He told me that he would miss me of course. Then he turned the question back to me, how would I feel if he told me he wanted to be alone for a year.
Honestly, I would miss him a great deal as we have spent every day together for the past few years. Full days of working together and then living together. It would seem weird to not curl up with him at night and not share meals together. But mostly I would be insanely jealous that he was getting to take off on a fucking quest.
Maybe I could be happy if I could go on my quest at the same time, so I didn't have to feel guilty being gone or pissed that he was getting to go.
I feel a sense of guilt writing that I desire to be alone. But both Eat, Pray, Love and Wild ignite a fire in me that makes me want to pack my backs and just go.
I want to know what it is like to keep my own company. I want to know not asking permission or coordinating, just freedom.
I want the time and silence to allow my shit to float up into my consciousness.
What would it be like to have no outside stimulus? To only hear my demons and my angels?
Go see Wild on the big screen while you can. Get the book too. I can't wait to get the book and read it. Go see the movie, then send me your itinerary plan of your own epic quest so I can add it to the list of places to research.
Can you hear the drums?
Have you ever said to yourself after have dried the tears of your girlfriend, "Omfg why did/does she put up with shit like that?"
If you are a non-shit taking woman, realize right now that you are not the majority. From where you sit, things are mostly very clear. You will do this, or you won't do that. You like him, or "ah heeeell no."
You probably started hearing your gut at an early stage and never allowed failures to discredit it. Maybe you used any small failures as a way to validate what your gut did tell you, and that you chose not to listen to it.
Maybe you had a good and healthy childhood, maybe not normal or typical, but good & safe. You may have had strong, happy, resilient adults in your life as helpers & role models.
Regardless of how, you held onto your personal foundation, you did.
Now, go back to the last time you left your girlfriend thinking what the hell was she thinking?
I am not saying turn into a know it all and nit pick the hell out of your girl friend's life, but I am asking that you remember that your voice of reason may be the only one she has to hear. Many of the rules and checklist you use to maneuver through your difficult times may be unknown to her.
You may have assumed that she was just choosing to ignore the signs, but I ask you to consider that she might not be seeing the signs at all, because they don't stand out in her life. Some women grow up not ever knowing what that feeling in their belly means.
If she grew up neglected, abused, with parents who were addicted, was over protected and controlled, she may never have had the small safe opportunities to learn to trust herself.
It also skews how normal and acceptable behavior looks to her.
So, dear strong girlfriend, please never stop telling her that she deserves more. That she doesn't have to settle for less than. Remind her that she is worthy of stable & normal love. Whisper to her that she is deserving of being wanted and desired. Buy her books and sit them on her bedside table for the nights she can't sleep.
Introduce her to women you meet who don't settle and don't put up with games, but who much like her keep looking & redefining their boundaries. Remind her that even though you are a take no shit kinda gal, that even you have fallen for the song & dance.
Be her bull-shit meter when she is deep in denial. Stand firm on throwing down the bull-shit card, then hug her & tell her to just listen for a moment. Remind her that although she comes with a ton of baggage, she is a good person who doesn't always protect herself.
Point out when you notice she is setting healthy boundaries and being true to herself. Help her recognize when she heard her gut and followed through on what it told her.
Remind her that she has permission to end a relationship before it starts or 11 months into it, without having to explain & discuss the reasons why. Repeatedly tell her that some things are "discussions" and some things are just "telling" and that she gets to decide which are which.
Dear strong girl friends,
I am so grateful that you have been in my life and have not given up on me. I am so blessed to have you to share my ups and downs with. Each time you have reached down to offer me a hand up or when you have gently pushed me forward have been important in helping me to create my own tool box from which I reach into now all on my own.
Thank you for the unconditional love that only a girlfriend who has ridden the roller coaster with you can provide. Thank you for rolling your eyes at me and raising your voice to that high squeaky place when you yell "really" and "bull-shit sister."
Thank you for teaching me skills I didn't have, because they are what I will pass down to my children.
For every girl friend who takes the time to invest in helping another sister stand on her own, thank you! Your investment helps cycles be broken!
I so needed to read this post on Facebook by Anne Lamott, Reluctant (read the entire post here)
Here is an excerpt from her post:
"But I got fixated on it, like a helicopter mom, and had begun researching "mini neck lifts." One reads about them everywhere--less invasive, less recovery time, local anesthesia. Magic! Yay.
Yet I am a feminist, a passionate supporter of women's rights, a follower of Jesus, especially His pleas that we take care of His poor.
So I thought I couldn't actually do it. But I was ashamed after the first of the year that I thought of it so constantly and of my conviction that I wanted to do it, and ashamed of my shame about it.
Obviously, I needed to fix this situation, which--left to my own devices--is my battle cry.
But I'm NOT left to my own devices. I believe in two things, God and my friends. They are both Love, and they stay close to me no matter how awful I am being.
Both have very low standards, which is all I have going for myself.
So I tried to heal myself of my obsessed and ashamed mind with my obsessive and ashamed mind. You know how well that works. Then I found myself in church. It was a nightmare, as my large heavy head had insisted on accompanying me.
But they say that when all else fails to follow instructions, so, it being church and all, I did what they say. It was silent confession. My usual confession is, "Look--I think we both know what we have on our hands here." But last Sunday, I said in silence that I was hating on myself for wanting a mini neck lift, and for being totally obsessed, in the face of my community's and world's profound suffering.
And in the silence, I heard a voice say, gently, "It's okay."
It was shocking. I opened my eyes to the sound, but all 25 congregants had their eyes closed. I gaped. It's okay? Wait--what?
And that was it--that it is okay to want a necklift, and it is okay to be screwed up and human and sad and cuckoo.
I started laughing to myself. This literally had not occurred to me.
Grace as spiritual WD-40, as buoyancy, as vitamins, 2nd winds. I got into serious affection with myself. I said to myself, "It's okay. Get a neck lift, don't get a neck lift. I'm right here, either way." --Anne Lamott
I can so relate to her internal dialogue and beating herself up.
I feel like I am letting God down by not taking the leap I think he has put before me. I needed to hear, "do or don't do," that he will still love me and be with me. I feel so much pressure to know what to do next, to be still, to hear the guidance I am seeking. To lift my foot and take that first step forward, to make that big leap. To not screw up again.
Honestly, I am flippin' tired of every decisions being so damn monumental. I am just tired.
I need to cut myself some damn slack.
Most days I feel like I am carrying the weight of the world on my shoulders, that I am keeping the earth spinning & chaos at bay for all that I love.
I know all about fixation & obsession as they are my bed partners. They like to tap me on the shoulder at 3 am every night to remind me of every aspect of my life that I am fucking up in and procrastinating.
I went to the doctor to get a prescription to help me sleep through their tapping. Hopefully if I can break the insomnia cycle I will feel better and more relaxed. I am doing so much future tripping lately that I have found myself missing whole days without being present in the moment.
Here is my plan for Extreme Self Care for this weekend:
Dinner with my girlfriend. Laughter and tears, without judgement or worry. Walls down, exposed and relaxed. Everyone should have a friend or two where you can shed your persona and just be spirit.
A hot bath, scented with something earthy.
Medication to help me sleep tonight.
Sleep through the visit of fixation & obsession. It is truly impressive what one can accomplish with 7 or 8 hours sleep fueling them.
Tomorrow, Living Social Snow Shoeing Trip bought last spring that hasn't expired yet! I need some outside time to breathe. I cannot wait to hear the crunch, crunch of the snow.
Even while writing this I started future tripping thinking, hopefully if I can relax this weekend, I will feel more have a more productive week next week. My head thinks that if I take down time today that I will have to work harder tomorrow. Man I need to meditate and get present. Maybe for just 5 minutes. Maybe 5 minutes is so little time that my brain won't even recognize that I am slacking?!
I need to allow myself to relax. I am giving myself permission to put down the weight of the world for just a little bit this weekend.
I am sure one of you will pick it up for me and keep the world spinning, right?
This is the young woman I met this summer who has already published her first book . When I met her she had just finished high school and was enjoying her summer before college starting by working on her next book. Her name is Micaela Luque and her book is Who We Are. I tried to pick her brains at an event I was invited to and it was so cool to listen to her explain to me that she just wrote her book, and then self published it.
I sat there with what I am certain looked like a crazy person face, just staring. "So you just wrote it and published it?" I asked. Her sweet shy reply was, "yes." I am sure I asked this repeatedly. There was wine involved as we were in wine country, so she might have written my weird look off to having too many glasses of wine. She was very kind. I am certain I looked back and forth between her parents with the same stupid crazy look of, you just let her write a book and publish it?
I think there is a point for all of us where we stood in that precious world of youth, before someone told us that our idea was stupid, to just fall in line and grow up. The blessed stay in that place of following their heart and gut. I want to raise my kids to live in that space of following their hearts desires.
Looking around that day it was clear to see Micaela is surrounded by a family that fully supports her dreams. It was absolutely beautiful to see with my own eyes.
Having witnessed this, I was surprised when I listened to her describe who she thought a writer was and her unease at initially calling herself a writer.
After meeting her, the seed was already planted in my soul again. I want to realize my dream of being a writer too. The thoughts churned in my head for weeks, but I still found myself waiting for someone to tell me it was okay for me to do this. I was waiting for the Universe to tell me it was okay.
The Universe spoke to me through Theresa on that fated night in July while we sat sharing a nice summer night & dinner & a margarita at the sidewalk table at Jose Muldoons downtown. Theresa gave me a life homework research project to find out what it would take to start the blog. Instead that night I went home and bought my domain name and started my blog. It was the best thing I have done for myself in decades!
Now I am trying to figure out how I go from blog writing to book writing, so I have been reading and listening to people who have put out there onto the internet how to write a book.
You know what these writer's say? They say, sit down and start writing, just start writing. 2015 will find me being a writer, writing my blog and writing a book.
Click here to learn more about Micaela and her book Who We Are.
On Facebook, I joined a group called 30 Days of Writing. I actually joined way late last year and the program was over, but after reading other people's post, I knew it was a great place to post my work.
I posted my piece Paying Rent In Hell based on reading the work of Danielle LaPorte on the Facebook group and woke up this morning with the sweetest surprise. One of the writers in this group wrote a poem based on my piece.
Her name is Liane Carter. She is the author of The Dream Devils, The Chronicles of Joya and she has a poetry book coming out later this year! Her website is www.lianecarter.com & you can join her on Facebook.
I wanted to share the poem she wrote inspired by my thoughts on swallowing my words & feelings.
I used to be a swallower
Now I spit it out
I no longer like the taste
Of bad feelings when they sprout
I prefer to leave the mutes
Stop chewing on deception roots
If not for others, at least for me
To free me from the travesty
Of living in a hell box wrapped in joy paper
That gets clawed and torn off sooner or later
I’m left with the devil writhing around
Head lost inside his jaws until my heart pounds
And screams, ‘Enough. Face your fears
You may have ten seconds, you may have ten years
Whatever you have, wear truth’s frilly knickers
Leave the victims and join the pickers’
This morning my first thought was that I love people who can turn a phrase like "truth's frilly knickers", but then I went back and read it again and had to sit down and think about "Face your fears you may have ten seconds, you may have ten years." Rereading the poem lead to rereading it again. as she has squeezed so much into a small poem. Each word well placed. I love poets!
So much of stress I am allowing to wear me out right now is side tracking me from where I want to be and who I want to be in ten years.
I need to leave the mutes and start speaking my truths (said in a really bad Jersey accent)!
Please leave me a message if you like this to let Liane know how cool her poem is! I will let you know when her new book of poems is out!
The Dream Devils and The Chronicles of Joya are available on Amazon.