Tuesday, November 26, 2013


~ Afraid | Nelly Furtado (ft. Attitude) ~

Today I am fearful and I'm not sure of what . . . just fearful.

My emotional balance is off and harmony is not flowing in the least bit.

The holidays take my emotions as hostage and I let it take me time and time again.  I'm back on the merry-go-round that I don't know how to get off of.

I'm living proof of "The only thing to fear is fear itself" . . . thank you Franklin D. Roosevelt!

Many other quotes say it all about being scared, fearful and afraid much better than I . . . my thoughts are cloudy, but I needed to write . . .

So often, when you start hearing about deliberate creation or when you've been reared in a world of dos and don'ts, you're guarded and tentative, you're afraid you're going to make a mistake, you're afraid you're going to cross a line that you can't step back from, and we say, that cannot happen. Boldly flow, and you can tell by the way you feel whether you're flowing in harmony or not, you see. (Abraham through Esther Hicks) - abraham-hicks.com

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.” (Theodore Roosevelt)

“Life is either a daring adventure or nothing. Security does not exist in nature, nor do the children of men as a whole experience it. Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than exposure.” (Helen Keller)

When we have the courage to speak our minds and use our voice to send the desires of our hearts from our inner world to the world outside, we take a bold step in making them happen. (Author Unknown)

The only thing we have to fear is fear itself. (Franklin D. Roosevelt, 1882-1945)

Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly. (Robert F. Kennedy)

Determination, patience and courage are the only things needed to improve any situation. (Author Unknown)

Look well into thyself; there is a source of strength which will always spring up if thou wilt always look there. (Marcus Antoninus)

There would be nothing to frighten you if you refused to be afraid. (Gandhi)

Do the thing you fear to do and keep on doing it... that is the quickest and surest way ever yet discovered to conquer fear. (Dale Carnegie)

It is not death that man should fear, but he should never fear beginning to live. (Marcus Aurelius)

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Monday, November 25, 2013

The sum of your choices

~ Mediterranea | Duran Duran ~

A life without challenges would be like going to school without lessons to learn. Challenges come not to depress or get you down; but to master, and to grow, and unfold your abilities. (Source) - www.pravsworld.com

Acknowledge that you failed, draw your lessons from it, and use it to your advantage to make sure it never happens again.
(Michael Johnson)

It seems like every time something perceived as
 "bad" happens, many of us ask "why?"

A long time ago, I came to the conclusion that everything, good and bad, happens for a reason.  Most of the time there is a lesson to be learned.

It doesn't always seem that way if you have followed my blog for any length of time.  The dark side of me tends to go negative first, then slowly transcends to positive mode after analyzing the situation.  There are times I will nearly drive myself crazy trying to figure out the reason, although there are not always specific reasons, just realizations of life that need to be learned.

Reactions to life circumstances are choices made by our God given gift of free will and intuition. 

All of those choices make up our life.

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Saturday, November 23, 2013

Teetering on the edge

~ Vertigo (Do The Demolition) | Duran Duran ~

Relationships can become out of balance
 and one-sided if we don’t occasionally
 check in with each other.

"One of the most beautiful qualities of an intimate relationship is the give and take of energy that occurs between two people. In the best-case scenario, both people share the talking and listening, and the giving and receiving of support, equally. 
Occasionally, within any relationship, the balance shifts and one person needs to listen more, or give more. Generally, over a long period of time, even this exception will take on a balanced rhythm; we all go through times when we take more and times when we give more."
Source:  Daily Om 

It has been a trying time!  We are still without running water . . . the end of Week #7 . . . no immediate end in site.  Having a well system rather than the convenience of municipality provided water really does suck. Our municipality wants at least $15,000 to get hooked up since this area is not set up for this service you would think is routine in a "modern" big city.  It doesn't matter that we pay local taxes!

The strange thing is that this whole time of unforeseen hardship, The Captain and I have become closer than we were before.

There have been times I felt as though I absolutely could not deal with this problem any longer.  Those times of teetering on the edge of sanity and insanity, that loss of balance, proved to be opportunities of soul searching and comfort.  The discouraging times for The Captain found me experiencing optimism which has helped him going.

As problems arise, we find solutions . . . it is not the end of the world.  We have so much to be grateful for.

We are living the above quote . . . hardships can become blessings . . . believe it or not!

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Monday, November 18, 2013

The Dreaded Holidays

Can you relate to Grumpy Cat when it comes to the holidays?

I've been enjoying the Christmas movie marathon on the Hallmark Channel that started last week.  Major progress for me and the holidays in general.  My holiday Grumpy Cat days are over . . . thank God!

Since JR died, even though I have moved on with my life and remarried, I still don't have the festive urge to put up a Christmas tree.  The Captain and I have gone through the boxes of stuff so he could experience my past Christmas memories through the massive amount of ornaments that would fill the Christmas trees . . . that is all I have been able to handle.

Those times reminiscing and sharing memories with The Captain are very special for me.  In past years, we have celebrated the holidays . . . watched the holiday specials and movies . . . gone to dinners and parties, but the most special are the times we make our favorite holiday meals and share memories.  However, no evidence seen in the home decor that the holidays have arrived.

I've noticed a popular theme in Christmas movies is the dread of the holidays for those who have experienced some type of loss in their lives that can make the holidays unbearable.  I tend to really like those movies since they don't make me feel like such a freak of nature.  Most of the stories have happy endings and as a viewer, I can quickly experience how they progress through their healing to being "normal" again.

At least I can now watch those Christmas movies without cringing at the approaching holidays . . . I'm slowly getting back to enjoying the holidays and the festivities associated with them.  Will I ever consider myself "normal" again as far as the holidays are concerned?  Honestly . . . I don't know!

It is no reflection on how I feel about The Captain.  In fact, his past holiday seasons were none too festive either and I really believe he has no festive attachment to them as well.  At least he doesn't make me feel like a freak!  One day, I'm sure we will develop our own holiday traditions when the time is right, but for now we have a good time when we join in the holiday festivities with friends and family.

When I think back on holidays past shortly after JR died, this is definite progress!  I really wanted the holidays to go away and absolutely hated joining in family holiday festivities.  Not because I don't love my family . . . I just didn't want to feel like a freak in the midst of normalcy.

Don't feel like a freak if you don't enjoy or even dread the holidays . . . not everyone enjoys them for "whatever" reason . . . especially for those who are still healing from the open wounds of "whatever."

Everything happens in its own time!

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Saturday, November 16, 2013

Refuse to be a victim

~ Take On Me (Extended Version) | A-Ha ~

If you realized how powerful your thoughts are,
you would never think a negative thought.

Peace Pilgrim

"We focus on the negatives, losing ourselves in the ‘problem.’
We point to our unhappy circumstances to rationalize
our negative feelings. This is the easy way out.
It takes, after all, very little effort to feel victimized."

Elizabeth Kubler-Ross

We hold the power in our thoughts.

Nothing and no one can make us a victim.
We do it to ourselves when we allow external
circumstances to hold power over us.
Although we have no control over what happens to us,
we ALWAYS have a choice in how we respond.

We hold our power when we accept complete
responsibility for our thoughts, feelings and actions.

"A man may fall many times but he won't be a failure
until he says someone pushed him."

Elmer G. Letterman

"The most potent weapon in the hands
of the oppressor is the mind of the oppressed."

Steven Biko

Those of us afflicted with any type of depression can relate to the pity party.

When I look back at some of my parties, they have included a friend or two going through a bad time.  Funny thing about having a pity party with someone else is how we tend to "one up" each other with the problems.  It is a mind game.

Of course I still have them, but my life is finally on the path to where I want to be, so they are less frequent and don't last as long as they once did.  

I continue to work on my reaction to circumstances, seeing them in a positive light rather than totally negative eyes.  It is all perspective and the thoughts are in our control.

My healing really started to kick in at the end of 2008, a couple of months before I met The Captain . . . the following post is from that time.

This post was originally published
on December 8, 2008

I'll admit to my times of wanting to give up and wallow in the depths of a pity party, wailing "woe is me . . . poor me . . . I am a victim" . . . my long time online friends and readers of my blogs have been witness to those pity party posts. Some I left in my blogs to show myself and others how idiotic that behavior is, to measure the progression of my adventurous journey into a "normal" life.

Many of those posts have been buried deep in my blogs, some remain on Yahoo 360, waiting to be brought back to life . . . and they will . . . the entire story needs to be told. I need to go back periodically and see the really bad times so I can appreciate the progress.

It is so easy to sit back and be a victim of life circumstances . . . the difficult part is healing from whatever got you there. In my case, "friends and loved ones" did not agree with my methods and shunned me for being "strange" because I needed to be left alone at certain times, but abandoned me when I needed them. Isn't love, compassion and friendship about understanding a fellow human being's needs when they are hurting?

As a result of compounded emotions, the feeling of betrayal in the midst of dealing with the grief of death, I'm fearful of being myself with anyone who wants to get close to me . . . they will also think that I am "strange" for living this hermit lifestyle that has suited me fine as I healed from a myriad of emotions. It has all been along the path on my life's journey . . . bridges that needed to be crossed, even if they had to be burned once I was on the other side. I continue to have trust issues . . . and the positive aspect is that I have learned to deal with problems on my own.

Although I did not always deal with obstacles as well as I should have, I continued to pick myself up and attempt to move forward in my own way. It is the only way I know . . . one step at a time . . . one moment at a time . . . whatever it takes to get through it maintaining sanity.

All in all, I refuse to be a victim . . . I've never been a loser and will die trying to get myself back to the path of being a normal person again . . . even if I am alone for the rest of my life, I have embraced my solitude which has made me a stronger person. When and if I find that person who will become my significant other . . . that relationship will enhance the contentment in my life.

A couple of months after writing that post in 2008,
the course of the rest of my life changed when
The Captain came into my life.

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Thursday, November 7, 2013

Pondering Restless Impatience

~ Raised on You | Heart ~

“Perhaps there is only one cardinal sin: impatience.
Because of impatience we were driven out of Paradise,
because of impatience we cannot return.”

Auden, W. H.

The noun has 3 meanings:

Meaning #1: a lack of patience; irritation with anything that causes delay
Synonym: restlessness

Meaning #2: a restless desire for change and excitement

Meaning #3: a dislike of anything that causes delay

If I sound like a broken record, it is because the record is stuck on the same song and plays on a continuous loop.  That is what life has felt like since our well water system broke down . . . we are in the midst of Week #4.

What came to mind was a post I wrote many years ago on my birthday.  I had the same restless impatience to get on with my life in a meaningful way, still not completely happy with myself and the progress I had made up to that point.

For totally different reasons, the emotion felt is best described as a "raging sense of powerlessness" . . . in other words, restlessness, anxiety and extreme impatience.  Obviously, from my birthday horoscope thingie on the following post, it is what is to be expected of myself . . . it is written in the stars!

In present time, there are many factors, however, the one that really hits home is "irritation with anything that causes delay".  The only thing that I have wanted to hear these past weeks is that "we have running water again."  

It is a quality of life kind of thing. 

The long awaited words have not come . . . only to be replaced by "well, this latest experiment has not worked."  Actually I could tell from The Captain's face, he didn't need to even say the words.  The poor guy has so much patience, perseverance and faith like I have never seen in my life.  He has been determined to save us a couple thousand dollars or so.

He's my hero! 
My irritation and bad feelings 
have nothing to do with him!

As it turns out, he has figured out what the problem is, we have the money to fix it and in a few days, we should have running water again.  

The changes I have gone through in these few weeks have amazed me.  I have written about them and none too happy with myself for being so impatient.

Having said that . . . my behavior and attitude has been much better than I ever expected for myself.  For me, exceeding my own expectations is an amazing thing since I am always so rough on myself.

Everything in life happens for a reason!

The following post found me with that same feeling since I could see life passing me by as I became another year older . . .

The following post was
 originally published
on August 14, 2008

Ohhhhhhh today I'm feeling the raging sense of powerlessness . . . or is it just in the stars?

Today is my birthday . . . ok, hence the raging sense of powerlessness . . . becoming a year older is not a happy thought as it was when I was a teenager and wanted so bad to be an adult. I'm exhibiting "pewter power" and allowing my silver streaks to show . . . an all too visual reminder of becoming older.

Whatever . . . here is the meaning of my birthdate and there is the gruesome twosome . . . impatience and restlessness . . . 

- August 14 -
You are very independent and fearless. You have a lot of pride in yourself, and have confidence that you can do anything you put your mind to.QuizGalaxy.com
Positive Traits:
cooperative, versatile, organized, analytical, curious
Negative Traits:
impatience, restlessness, rebellious, irresponsible, breaking promises

Maybe it is just a restless desire for change and excitement!
God knows I have earned it . . .
I'm another year older and life is passing me by :(

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Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Jewel in the Rough

~ Born This Way | Lady Gaga ~

Everyone is a jewel in the rough since no one is perfect and never will be.

A recent comment made by a reader got me pondering life along the following line of thinking.  He said he would feel that peace, love and happiness that I write about when he finds love.  It made me think of the days that I thought love was that magic thing that would change everything.

My new life as a married woman is totally different than the life I was leading at that time.  Back in those days, shortly before writing that post, I had the fairy tale thinking that finding love again was the key to finding peace, love and happiness.  I was so wrong!

Of course finding love again is a huge part of it . . . I am definitely happily married . . . much happier than I was alone. However, the biggest lesson I have learned is that a bigger part of finding the elusive peace, love and happiness is accepting yourself as you are and loving yourself anyway.

Since writing the following post, I have learned so much about myself.  In fact, since meeting The Captain I have learned much more about myself.  

The phases of our lives continue peeling back the layers of who we are and reveal themselves to us at the time we need it most.  At least that is the way it has worked for me.  We continually evolve with time even though we are the same person born the way we are.  However, perspective of who we are changes the way we perceive ourselves . . . life circumstances can do that for us if we allow to analyze ourselves with a completely honest open mind.

Before finding love again, I truly believe I had to be comfortable within my skin, embrace my solitude and live for bliss . . . even if it meant that I would live my life alone.  It was a long and difficult journey to that place.

It was at that point in my life that when I least expected it, The Captain just appeared in my life and everything fell into place.  Did he make my life perfect, complete with the elusive peace, love and happiness I so craved in my life?  I would not be honest if I said yes.

The new life journey is striving toward the harmony of peace, love and happiness as a couple just as I struggled with learning to embrace my solitude when I was alone.

We are always a jewel in the rough!

This post was originally published on August 17, 2008:

I found the following post by Carrie Hart very inspirational and motivating this morning. It is so indicative of my life since I made my new year's resolutions as I prepared for my "new life" while watching the ball drop on New Year's Eve . . . that was my symbolic start to "normal".

Although I am firmly convinced that the past few years of my life have been a total refinement that has found me "walking the fires of hell", the reward will be the best person that I ever imagined being with an awesome life with lots of peace, love and happiness. The most important lesson is being more grateful for every little blessing that I've been given . . . it wasn't always that way. Walking through the fires will do that to you . . . appreciate the good things in life so much more.

As I look back at the trials and tribulations, I see the good in every one of them and the reason why I had to go through those things. It is all a personal growth process and the refinement of the spirit . . . the peeling of the layers, one by one.

One of the most important things to get from the struggles I've been through is to never lose faith and hope, no matter how bad the situation appears to be. Expect God to move in your life incrementally, working on one layer at a time, sometimes more . . . expect the emotional struggle of personal growth. It is necessary to make us the best person we can be.

The most important piece of my life puzzle was not presented to me until recently, although it was waiting for me before the start of the new year. The time was not right for the missing piece to present itself . . . I needed help to remove the rest of the layers . . . the time is now :)

My path was revealed at the appropriate time and I know exactly where I'm going . . . still going through the refinement and removing more layers to get there . . . just like a jewel in the rough, I'm almost ready to shine.

Here is the post by Carrie Hart . . .

You are like a precious jewel under layers of stone, your glow covered by fear, social conditioning and doubt. And here and there, there has been a deep chip in that stone and a little bit of light shines out from the jewel, showing the light and love that you are.

And often there was pain and loss in the creation of that little opening, as you felt life cut deeply through your protective coating to expose some of your true heart. And yet, that place is where you shine brightly and show your true self.

There are those who spend their entire lives decorating the stone covering. They paint on bright and colorful layers of success and achievement; they do intricate carvings on their stone shield.

But you desire more than this. You know that the answer lies in having the courage to remove these layers, these layers of fear, doubt, and yes, even the highly decorated achievements and successes. You know that praise, approval and recognition are not the true shine.

You are the jewel underneath, the gem of beauty and glory. You are all of that beauty and wonder, right now. And all you need to do is have the courage to chip away at the baser stone that covers you. Just chip and chip, removing layer after layer.

Yes, this does take courage. For as you do this, you are removing the intricate decoration that you have been using to disguise the stone, and there are moments, between the time you chip away the colorful paint and the time you reach the jewel, that you feel bare and vulnerable as you show to yourself and the world only your unadorned fears and doubts.

But continue. Continue to chip away until you reach the jewel underneath. Clear away more and more of the stone, exposing your true colors, your true light. And as you expose and express who you truly are, you can even cut beautiful facets in the stone, so that you shine ever more brightly as you begin to catch the light and love that flows toward you.

And one day, you will have cleared away enough stone that the star in your center can be seen, the unique and glowing self that is you, shining out endlessly, creating light and love, not only as a reflection but as a part of the creative force that drives all that is.

All of this is within you now, right now. You have the love, the light, the beauty and the power. You are deeply creative and shine with a light that is at once completely unique and yet one with all. You have all of this glory within you, right now.

Reach down and feel the star glowing within you. Reach down to that star and you will find there all of the courage you need to let yourself shine.

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Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Life's moments

~ Give Me Strength | Dido ~

When there's something that needs to be done,
give yourself a moment to do it.

When there's a decision that must be made,
give yourself a moment to think it through.

When life demands a response,
give yourself a moment to find the
most positive and meaningful one.

When someone is explaining something to you,
give yourself a moment to truly listen and to understand.

Life is made up of many moments, one right after another. The big outcomes, results and achievements depend on what you do with all those little moments along the way. With each moment you can choose to let it pass or to let it bring you down. Or, you can decide to make good use of that moment with positive purpose, value and love.

How many times have you looked back on your life with regret, and wished you had given yourself a moment to do what could have easily been done? Now is your opportunity to avoid such future regrets by recognizing the great value in each moment.

When life is asking something of you,
give yourself a moment to make it right.

And when you add up all those moments,
you'll find you've made life great.

(Ralph Marston)

Sometimes life's moments have got to be taken in tiny little doses . . . like minutes or seconds at a time, a day at a time or a week at a time . . . whatever is necessary to go through whatever you are going through.

Ralph Marston's writings are so inspirational to me!  Hope you were able to find inspiration in this one as I did.

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Sunday, November 3, 2013

Divine Discontent

~ Alright | Jeff Lynne/ELO ~

What a great story on taking a
 positive view of a bad situation!

Some lessons are more expensive

 than others . . . even if they
 don't cost a penny

A fellow came to my teacher Hilda Charlton and complained that he had been ripped off by an auto mechanic. "The guy charged me $500 for poor work and then refused to remedy it," he explained. "I had a bad feeling about this mechanic before he started the work. Now I wish I had listened to it."

Hilda responded, "If I were offering you a week-long course on following your intuition, and I guaranteed you that after this course you would be better able to hear your inner guidance and more willing to follow it, would you take the class?"

"Why, sure!" answered the fellow without hesitation.

"And if the tuition for the course was $500, would you pay it?"

"That would be a bargain."

"Then consider yourself lucky," Hilda told him. "You got the entire course from your mechanic in one day."

Now before you go out and seek pain to learn, hear this: Pain happens, but suffering is optional. When pain comes, make use of the experience, but do not wallow in it. When you accidentally place your finger in a flame, it is supposed to hurt just long enough for you to pull it out. If you think there is value in keeping it there, you will be a crispy critter. Pain is a minor element of life, unless you are indulging it. Then it becomes suffering. Get the message and then get on with your life, which is far more about joy than sorrow.

All experiences in life can be sorted into two categories: (1) Experiences to be enjoyed; and (2) Experiences to be learned from. There is no slot in between. Nothing random. Figure out which experiences fall into which category, and you are well on your way home.

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Anxiety and life phases

~ I'm Fine | Heart ~

It has occurred to me today that life is just a cycle of phases, some good, some bad, all contributing to the person we are today.  Of course each time we tend to feel as though we are losing it, like in my featured song by Heart.

Since we are entering Week #4 of no running water, I needed to read old posts and remind myself of where I have been and the anxiety associated with it. I always tell myself "this too shall pass" . . . and it does!

Anxiety comes in different phases, usually dependent on what the current life circumstances are.

I have selected two phases of my life to write about.

The first post found me entering an exciting new chapter in my life after successfully completing training for the job I knew was made for me.  I remember being so happy, although the disappointment of the job as it really was and the attitude of "corporate America" toward its employees ultimately took me through another time of anxiety and the feeling of failure.

The positive aspects of this experience was the feeling of accomplishment for finally getting out of the house, going after that job I wanted so badly and successfully completing some emotionally draining training.  Even though the job didn't work out, no one would have ever suspected I had previously been so apprehensive about leaving my comfort zone and shutting myself out of society for so many years.

Today I am so very grateful that I don't have to face "corporate America" again . . . I can say with certainty that those days are over. 

Notice a theme here?

The last post found me at a time of high anxiety as I had quit smoking and thought I had a grip on it . . . at the same time I decided I no longer needed my anxiety medication and was weaning myself off.  Big mistake!  The attempt of quitting smoking is a high anxiety endeavor anyway . . . not a time to get off of anxiety medication.  My doctor was very angry with me and convinced me to start taking them again.

The lesson I learned is taking medication for a legitimate problem is nothing to be ashamed of.  The shame is to not do anything about a problem that exists.

Many of us are afflicted with high anxiety for whatever reason.  Don't be afraid of medication . . . it is necessary when problems arise so you can deal with them with a clear head and attitude.  Mine has never gone away, I can just deal with it more effectively now.  Life challenges happen and you must be prepared for them.

This post was originally published on March 8, 2008

A new chapter in my life has begun. A time that I thought would never come, although I just took one day at a time and tried to deal with each one as best as I could. Every time I take out my certification for successfully completing training for a job that I set in my mind over two years ago, I am so grateful for the strength that God gave me to make it through those bad times and gave me enough faith in myself to go for it and make it through the training that I almost walked out of several times.

Positive attitude and faith in ourselves and our creator goes a long way and through times we think we can't get through. We can go through life in a bad mood and an awful attitude, resulting in a miserable existence. I've been through all the phases.

It was especially rough when I made the decision that I needed to quit smoking if I was going to join the real world and get a real job since the realization hit me that selling "whatever" on eBay was no longer going to provide the comfortable life that I had grown accustomed to. In retrospect I think it was divine intervention to finally get me out of my house. God works in mysterious ways to teach us lessons and make us stronger.

As I get ready for the new chapter of my life with a new career and the contentment, peace of mind and security I was searching for, I started my one day off with my first cup of coffee reading some of my old posts so I can truly savor this moment and appreciate the emotions of accomplishment.

The following post was written as I was well into my endeavor of quitting smoking . . . the "no smoking weight gain" was starting to creep up on me . . . it was just a bad time that gives me so much appreciation for the changes I have made in my life.

There was always hope for me even though I didn't always think so . . . there is also hope for anyone going through a bad time, no matter what the circumstance . . . with faith and a positive attitude.

This post was originally published on December 11, 2006

Not asking for much . . . not even happiness at the moment since that seems like an impossible dream, just CONTENTMENT and peace of mind would be great.

The past couple of days have been awful . . . I am convinced it is withdrawals from quitting smoking and/or getting off my medication. Feelings of restlessness and anxiety have consumed me and just about everything is making me irritable. The cravings to smoke a cigarette are virtually gone, although they do hit me when I least expect it, but pass quickly.

I had done some research on withdrawal from my medication and the good news is that my withdrawal symptoms are not as bad as I expected them to be based on my research. I always took way less than prescribed because I hate being dependent on anything and was so scared of becoming addicted to them. Today I am thankful that my withdrawal symptoms are not as bad as they could be even though I am ready to climb the walls from this anxiety.

My state of anxiety is all about my life's general frustrations and irritations.

I'm still dealing with no hot water and having to boil water for everything. The repair people will finally be here tomorrow and hopefully it will be fixed.

The one thing that is really irritating me is the weight that I have gained as a result of not smoking anymore. I am not doing anything different, although I am hungry all the time. The weight gain came fast and has really made me sad since I have worked so hard to take it off. Now I have to work doubly hard to get that under control. I just spent 1/2 hour on the exercise bike to get rid of anxiety and hopefully keep the weight gain from continuing. 

This is the story of my life . . . something positive always brings the negative to bring me down. I can't win!

I'm off to experience the one thing that always makes me happy and content . . . my first cup of coffee for the day. I'll also have to check out my music collection and find some happy music. Those two things will instantly put me in a better state of mind.

This is going to be an awesome week in spite of all of this . . . I'm determined!

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Saturday, November 2, 2013

Simple abundance and being grateful

~ Simple Things | Amy Grant ~

The following is an article from the Daily Om which beautifully describes the Simple Abundance lifestyle. It seems as though these articles show up just when my spirit needs to be renewed and reminded of what is important . . . just like the child-like joy I get from the image of the dogs playing poker. 

I remember this same image in black velvet from back in the day . . . that memory alone makes me smile since I always loved the concept of dogs playing poker . . . notice the bulldog is cheating :)

The World in a Bright Light

Everyday is a blessing, and in each moment there are many things that we can be grateful for. The world opens up to us when we live in a space of gratitude. In essence, gratitude has a snowball effect. When we are appreciative and express that gratitude, the universe glows a bit brighter and showers us with even more blessings.

There is always something to be grateful for, even when life seems hard. When times are tough, whether we are having a bad day or stuck in what may feel like an endless rut, it can be difficult to take the time to feel grateful. Yet, that is when gratitude can be most important. If we can look at our lives, during periods of challenge, and find something to be grateful for, then we can transform our realities in an instant. There are blessings to be found everywhere. When we are focusing on what is negative, our abundance can be easy to miss. Instead, choosing to find what already exists in our lives that we can appreciate can change what we see in our world. We start to notice one blessing, and then another.

When we constantly choose to be grateful, we notice that every breath is a miracle and each smile becomes a gift. We begin to understand that difficulties are also invaluable lessons. The sun is always shining for us when we are grateful, even if it is hidden behind clouds on a rainy day. A simple sandwich becomes a feast, and a trinket is transformed into a treasure. 

Living in a state of gratitude allows us to spread our abundance because that is the energy that we emanate from our beings. Because the world reflects back to us what we embody, the additional blessings that inevitably flow our way give us even more to be grateful for. The universe wants to shower us with blessings. The more we appreciate life, the more life appreciates and bestows us with more goodness.

Source: The Daily Om

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Friday, November 1, 2013

When Things Go Wrong In Life

~ Open Road | Bryan Adams ~

Things don't go wrong and
break your heart so you
can become bitter and give up.

They happen to break you down
and build you up so you can be
all that you were intended to be.

(Charles "Tremendous" Jones)

I guess this means that I'm going through
another time of building my character!

In times of uncomfortable life challenges, I always try to remember that there are so many others in this world who wish they could trade places with me.  This week marked the anniversary of Sandy, the super storm, and the news media was taking a look back at her victims and where they are today.  Many have not finished rebuilding and others lost everything.  Imagine, a year later! 

My sweetie is teaching me about perspective and how the way one perceives a situation can change the way you feel about it and get through it with less anxiety.  There is hope for me after all . . .

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