Belonging

As I thumb through my 2017/2018 journals (yup, plural) a theme presented its self. I was searching for something to belong to. I was looking for anything that would take away the loneliness. You know “fill my cup”. The journal entries read as stories of my failed attempts to find a person, place, or thing that invoked feelings of worthiness. Screaming at me from these pages is my life long struggle. A struggle I want to move past. I finally see that I crave a belonging filled with purpose, a belonging to my self worth, a belonging to my choices. Rereading my words brought fear and shame, it made my heart heavy like the lead vest at the dentist office. So many rushed, confused choices made out of what was reading as desperation. (Ugg, truth can be so ugly). Not what I ever intended for myself.

I set aside my “ah ha” moment because I need to digest my findings. I need to shift my way of thinking. I have some really big work todo on myself.

In a Starbucks on on a Weekday morning I ran into a friend… Their recent life situation was painfully familiar to me. I got misty just thinking of the emotional torture that we were discussing. “How are you doing” promoted a candid snap shot of the loneliness my sweet friend was feeling. A loneliness that has burned my cookies for years. A loneliness I wouldn’t wish on any good intentioned person, ever. There we were bonding and belonging over a shared loneliness. My ah ha moment just kicked me in my soul.

OK universe, thank you for the push. Now it’s time to get to work:)

My Holiday in France Lifted a Fog

Grappling with the practice of calm and present has me realizing I’ve lost that piece of me that use too shine, that bit of je ne sais quoi that made me bright and vibrant.
Heading to France, I was worried I didn’t have it in me too relax and just vacation, too just be me. That I’d be unable to take a break from worrying about the things I can’t control. This anxious worrying often causes me too miss out on just being.What I’ve taken away from my trip is this, Don’t get hung up on where you think you should be, start living where you are.

Many kinds of conversations took place in France, shedding much needed light on my perceived state of limbo. Quietly reminding me through his conscious, kind choices, my friend unknowingly flipped a switch for me. Ah, yes, there is a space I can be apart of that has no expectations of me. That in that space I matter. The Door opening, (I can not work a door in France to save my life! This includes bathroom doors, lmao) bag carrying, inquiries of my preference… all things I forgot that are an important part of life. These selfless acts of small kindness flowed without shame or ridicule. With out a whisper of wanting anything in return from me.
As I taxi out on the run way saying goodbye to a lovely visit, I’m writing this with truly a new lease on life. Leaving limbo behind.

Am I a Passenger or am I a captain of the life I live?
Captain.

Fear Can Wreck Ya 

I believe it’s imbedded in our culture to do better, to be better, to be the best. 
I’m scared that I won’t make the cut. I could list for you my collection of failures and then tell you some mumbo jumbo about them being life lessons, but that’s not where I’m going with this.

Lessons from some of my failures birthed fear, and when faced with daily tasks like parenting, running a business, or even being a productive family member, I find that fear has me questioning myself about my choices. 

When faced with a new challenge I tend to air on the side of caution, bet ya didn’t know that about me. When fear sets in and the recording goes off in my head “do you really have what it takes to execute this?” It’s this recording that sends me into a tail spin. 

Dear fear please get out of my head. You are making life difficult. 

To rid my mind of it’s endless banter and quite the fear takes work. Being in the moment, mindful of how I’m feeling and how I’m addressing my emotions can be exhausting. Catching myself before the banter turns to worry, then to fear has been a priceless life skill. I hope to carry the skill with me always. 

Quiet my mind so I can be present and at peace. I may never fully master this skill,  but my awareness of it has given me back hours during my day. 

Happily Ever Afters Are Messy

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I can put together a pretty kickass pity party, I can really steep in it sometimes. I find myself quickly trying to turn that pity into a positive, cause who the hell doesn’t have struggles these days. I’ve met a huge amount of people in my line of work,  each one has a life struggle, major or not it impacts them in some way or another. What I’ve taken from these amazing poeple and thier life stories is that “Happily Ever Afters” are messy.

You never start out with the intention to lead a diffulcult life. We don’t grow up wishing for things to be tragic, so why do some of us find it diffucult to look on the bright side. I’ll never be certain what is in someone else’s head or how they interpret the world around them, if I had to make a guess, some of us got it wrong.  We are searching for a not so messy “Happliy Ever After” like the one in the movies. Spoiler alert! We ain’t ever gonna find it (not how we think that is). It’s like Santa, a great legend that brings us smiles and hope, but isn’t tangible. (Nothing against Santa, I love the holiday!)

Changing your mind set can be a powerful thing, now there is no need to lie to ourselves and say everything is coming up roses, but could, when the negitive recordings go off in our brains, it be possible to talk ourselves off the “my life sucks” ledge…

Could we train ourselves to be brighter side of life people…

Could that brighter side be the “Happliy Ever After” some of us think we are missing…

Can we be taught that happy is not perfect, it’s messy…

Can we learn to love our mess and think of it less as a struggle and more like a journey, not a journey that will end, but one that will continuly change…

Can we accept the moving pieces of change and be happy with that…

I vote yes! I would much rather live a life looking at a messy “Happily Ever After” than no “Happily Ever After” at all. Besides a pity party really eats into my much coveted free time.

Buck Up It’s Not That Bad

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Side Note: I often reflect on a terrible time in life (mine or others) by wrapping it in positives. I think it’s in part how I process it all.

This time it was hard to make my positivity sandwich. It started more than a year ago. My misdiagnosed tendonitis would bring me to my knees. Turns out I broke my collarbone at the shoulder joint. By the time I had gotten myself to an orthopedic surgeon I was missing an inch of it. I know what your thinking… If I hadn’t seen the x-ray myself I would think I’m crazy too.

The confirmation that I was actually broken (and it was not all in my head) came as a relief. Yes my heart filled with joy knowing I had broken a bone. Has anyone ever looked you dead in the eye and called you a liar… Me neither, but when the words “Buck up it’s not that bad” came out of the PTs mouth, I felt like he did just that… jerk. The blind trust I had for a so called professional quickly became a life lesson. I know me best, not anyone else. Always go with my gut.

Who would have thought a year plus of chronic pain could leak into ones total being and chip away at it. It started as a slow drip and ended as a raging waterfall of what I can only describe as awful. With that said I have a whole new respect for folks who live with incurable chronic pain.

The last six weeks before surgery were a struggle. I was irritable with a short fuse. Tired, because the pain didn’t allow me to sleep. I thought I was loosing my mind. I was sad, unfocused and over caffeinated. I often felt confused, unable to keep a thought in my head. The last 2weeks before surgery I was the kind of depressed that lead my thoughts to death. I cried more tears from the depression than from the pain.

Scary, for so many reasons.

Flash forward, waking up in recovery at the surgical center with my zombie arm, the awesome nerve block was to thank for that, I felt a relief I hadn’t before. The hope of “no more pain” rushed back into my life. My nurses all said how cheery I was and how quickly I was up and ready to go home. I couldn’t help but over share how excited I was to get my shit fixed and be in a new kind of light at the end of the tunnel pain. I couldn’t thank them all enough that day. They mentioned they wished more of their patient were as excited to get fixed as I was. I wished them the same, can’t be easy dealing with us cranky, depressed, broken people.

Nine days later I’m feeling like myself again. My break is fixed and healing nicely. I’ve gotten back my happy and have been sleeping like a baby without pain killers. I can remember tons more stuff and haven’t cried once. Woo!

To know we have it good sometimes we need to know the bad. I’m thanking my lucky stars I have another chance at the good.