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Deep thoughts from the Funeral

Any week in your life when you say goodbye to a friend is going to be difficult. I found myself asking the difficult question, “is this the tipping point in life, more funerals than weddings or baby showers. More sadness than celebration?”

Intellectually I know that is not the truth. Life keeps moving on, and there are always things to celebrate. I have been working diligently in the recent past to celebrate everything I can, and plan to continue that. I believe it is important. 

I am finding strength and support from new friends as I grow and change. I grow more distant from those who I once treasured so dearly.  

I have thought a lot recently about how growth is pain.  Much like fruit on the vine, that which does not grow is left to wither and die. Fruit that does grow, changes and is forced into a new shape, it enlarges, and is forced by the conditions around it, and the nutrition available to adapt, thrive, or whither and die.  Did you know they can make watermelons square, or pears shaped like Buddha? Adaptation to environment, and the result of need or desire for change. That pear or watermelon grew as it was forced, not all end up the same and that’s ok. 

It’s hard to think about loss because it makes us look sat ourselves. What is the legacy I want to leave behind? Would anyone come to my funeral? What would people say about me? As I sat in the pew at mass I did have the passing though that I did not care if anyone showed up at my funeral because those that matter show up when you are here. 

Funerals are not for the dead they are for the living… and while I am out living I want to be surrounded by the amazing and magical people that keep showing up.  This is why I invite people to be part of my life. Be present because you are a gift of spirit. 

You can raise someone up, or drag them down and it is your choice how to handle a situation. I will continue to raise others and myself up, saying yes and showing up when asked at every chance my body allows. We only get one shot in this life, find joy where we can, embrace it where it lives in whatever form it arrives in. 

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Courage

Watching to “To The Bone” on Netflix today a lot of it hit home. I have struggled as far back in my life as I remember with an eating disorder. More than that this movie was a good reminder about living life. 
Folks, I beg you to take note in the real world there is no way to be safe or see and live just the good moments. 

Stop waiting for life to be easy. The more you push through the muck and the mud; the garbage and the sludge the more brilliance and beauty you will find. 

Stop hoping for someone or something to come along and save you. We are meant to be resilient and when you stare down the demons and that awful shit… you are going to have an AMAZING life. 

I offer you this poem for a bit of reflection. Please enjoy and move into the week with intention! 

Courage 

     by Anne Sexton

It is in the small things we see it.

The child’s first step,

as awesome as an earthquake.

The first time you rode a bike,

wallowing up the sidewalk.

The first spanking when your heart

went on a journey all alone.

When they called you crybaby

or poor or fatty or crazy

and made you into an alien,

you drank their acid

and concealed it.


Later,

if you faced the death of bombs and bullets

you did not do it with a banner,

you did it with only a hat to

comver your heart.

You did not fondle the weakness inside you

though it was there.

Your courage was a small coal

that you kept swallowing.

If your buddy saved you

and died himself in so doing,

then his courage was not courage,

it was love; love as simple as shaving soap.


Later,

if you have endured a great despair,

then you did it alone,

getting a transfusion from the fire,

picking the scabs off your heart,

then wringing it out like a sock.

Next, my kinsman, you powdered your sorrow,

you gave it a back rub

and then you covered it with a blanket

and after it had slept a while

it woke to the wings of the roses

and was transformed.


Later,

when you face old age and its natural conclusion

your courage will still be shown in the little ways,

each spring will be a sword you’ll sharpen,

those you love will live in a fever of love,

and you’ll bargain with the calendar

and at the last moment

when death opens the back door

you’ll put on your carpet slippers

and stride out.



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My Summer of Dresses

So I literally spent the entire summer in dresses. Skater dresses, Maxi dresses, Sun dresses.  Workdays were spent in dresses and casual Fridays where jeans should be worn… dresses.

I am “not a dress person.” A former coworker who has now left my job said having my gallbladder removed was probably the best thing that could have happened to my fashion sense. … WOW. I guess maybe it was supposed to be a confidence booster about my dresses.  I have been trying not to criticize myself too harshly, especially as my wardrobe now contains an obscene number of dresses.

For those keeping track my galbladder surgery was back in… April.  I had not been able to wear pants for the longest time due to the incision in my belly button.  It would not heal.  The dissolvable stitches they used were not being disolved by my body.  They were also poking out through the incision causing further irritation and scarring.

About two weeks ago I tried jeans again for the full day.  It was uncomfortable, but manageable.  I have missed my “normal” clothes.  They are an expression of me… and while the dresses are an expression they don’t have the same way of expressing things as my unicorn, superhero, or coffee shirts do.

So I have now morn my jeans a few times, like maybe three… they are not as comfy as they once were… but they still fit! Which is something I was concerned about due to the possible weight gain or body shift having nothing forn fitting being worn in months!

Fall is here, which means it will be time to modify my wardrobe… adding leggings under my dresses, but I will likely continue my dresses into fall and winter since pants are still leave me counting down the time to get them off at the end of the day.

I am happy as a clam to be finally feeling like I am almost back to normal where I can get back to a starting point to regaining my stamina.  I can’t even begin to explain how difficult it has been to wrap my head around how kind i need to be to my body to allow it to recover on its own terms.

Kindness to ones own self is possibly one of the most dificult things I have had to learn.

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Everyone is Someones Replacement

So recently I have been trying to stay very in the moment.  Very conscious and connected to the here and now. I hear people call it being rooted, or a bunch of different things  I started calling it being in the flow when I started connecting to whatever “it” is that I have been experiencing.  The more I am in the flow, the more I find books, experiences, and people who are “in the flow.”  I am experiencing energy attracting like energy and I fully believe it.

If you view yourself as mediocre, and look at your circle of friends, and your job and your situation, you are going to find that you are surrounded by things that are exactly that.  If you view yourself as AMAZING, and that you do AWESOME things, and you try new things, and you like in a state of the here and now and are thankful for what you can do in the moment… you will attract more good energy.

So earlier this week I was having a nice chat with a friend, when a nerve was struck. It struck kinda hard and I am not sure why. We have been talking about a lot of things. We talk a lot about work, a lot about my old job, since we have that setting in common. We started talking about how I had left behind some big shoes to fill, that they haven’t quite found the right fit for and how I still feel a little bit of mixed emotions over that situation. We also talked about some things going on in life right now, big and little, mostly just empty chat… that somehow turned into deep insightful conversation as tends to happen when I just sit down to talk with someone.

When he said… “everyone is someones replacement” I just… I didn’t have words to respond.  I mean, it is truth, it is so profound… It makes me think about what kind of space I want to leave behind to be replaced in any aspect of my life.  About two weeks ago a friend of mine passed away suddenly.  If I were to pass away… who would be my replacement.

I know that is not exactly the context we were speaking in… but my mind went there.  I mean, I know I am replaceable at work… I never live under the illusion that I am not.  While I may have been told two jobs ago “you can be replaced by an add on craigslist” during a fit of frustration by my manager, for which when I gave my notice and said that was one of my reasons for leaving I received an apology, it is true.  My replacements may not be as qualified for the job as I was, or as hard-working, but as i said before you attract what you put out there… and if you are just looking for a body to be there at an ungodly hour… that is what you will get.

I don’t have kids of my own to worry about who would be mom to them… but I am an auntie… and it is sad to think who would replace what I teach them.  I am a daughter, and no matter what the state of my relationship with parents is, there is no one that could replace that role.  I am a sister, who would put her life on the line… or on hold in her brother needed something. Who would do that?

While everyone is someones replacement… no one is replaceable. I want those words to resonate with you right now.  Everyone is someones replacement… but NO ONE IS REPLACEABLE.  You are valuable.  You are unique and you touch people in ways you do not know, and can not understand.

I have struggled for years with depression.  Along with depression I have self-esteem issues, self-worth issues, anxiety, you name it it effects me in some way.  When I was a teen I attempted suicide, and as I have been in recovery from that for years it never really clicked that I am not replaceable.  I can be replaced but I am not replaceable.  My job in the transportation industry has I suppose served as a huge learning tool for me… because it keeps showing me over and over again that I can be replaced but I am not replaceable.

So take a look in the mirror, look into your eyes and tell yourself you are not replaceable, say it like you mean it. Say it until you believe it. Everyday.

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What Happens When you Move Out

So I haven’t really talked to anyone yet about WHY I moved out, or what happened to cause me to leave it all behind… You see last year at Fitbloggin I was not really in the best of heads-paces with my blog.  Along came Dan and Rachel, but mostly Dan from Blogging Concentrated.  Dan pushed me to know more about “my story”  I told him a little about me, and why I write… and where I wrote. I also told him what I wanted to write about.  He suggested I steer the boat in the direction I was talking about.

So after Fitbloggin14′ I bought a new domain… and pointed it at the old site. What is that old saying about insanity and expecting different results? Or better yet… if you always do what you have always done you will always get what you always got.  Yeah that sounds about right.  The problem was really not with the blog, or myself really it is that my expectations had shifted, and what my expectations for what “home” was to be, could no longer be a reality.

As I get older, and I am not saying I am old I am just saying that I am as everyone else is celebrating a birthday every year,I am not just now fighting the normal issues that accompany that process.  I am fighting the fact that I have a genetic issue that I cannot control. I am not letting it define my life, however it does cause me to take notice of some things more than others.  The physical decline makes the mental side of things even more difficult.  Framing the though of getting healthy, around a body that in my mind was a “big fat failure” was and remains VERY difficult.

I can’t tell you the number of days and nights I have said, Why the hell is my body such a fucking mess? Why is it so weak? Why does it have to fall apart over and over again? It is SUCH a struggle to feel like you can do all these amazing things in one moment, and the next literally have the floor drop out from under you because your body LITERALLY can’t hold it together.  It feels like a giant metaphor for life… you squeeze onto things so hard and then poof they are gone.

What I have been working on is to try to find the best way for me to accept myself, and my life in the moments that I am in. Some days are better than others, I can laugh loudly and easily find many things to be grateful for.  Some days are hard, and I am just thankful to have the strength to get out of bed… I muster all I have to get through the day at my job and come home to collapse with a frozen dinner and that’s all I have left in me.

The days where I have so little to “give” are the days I need to seek acceptance and forgiveness of myself the most.  Forgiveness of so many things I put upon myself.  Things like you didn’t work out, you didn’t eat right, you’re lazy, you’re a failure because you are weak and can’t do X Y or Z.  Acceptance that while I can’t do something in that moment that those days are not fatal, they are not final.

Not a single thing I do can define me. I am learning… it is a process… a process of forgiveness and acceptance.  A process of learning and loss.  I do believe I am grieving a loss at this point, a loss of a goal I had for myself.  I haven’t lost my goal, but my expectations have been more clearly defined and that has become a very harsh reality to face.

If you havent noticed I have migrated my social media names, I will be leaving my old blog up, because there is no reason to bury the past… but there is no reason to live there either.  Thanks to those of you that have already joined me on my way! we’re off on an adventure… and don’t worry there will be Unicorns, goats, llamas, sheep, alpacas and more along the way! Just wait and see!